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January 18, 2005


Richard Cameron

Dear Suzanne,

Well, you have something in common with the famous Italian mathematician

According the Bellevue Community College website
"The king of Syracuse once asked Archimedes to find a way of determining if
one of his crowns was pure gold without destroying the crown in the process.
The crown weighed the correct amount but that was not a guarantee that it
was pure gold. The story is told that as Archimedes lowered himself into a
bath he noticed that some of the water was displaced by his body and flowed
over the edge of the tub. This was just the insight he needed to realize
that the crown should not only weigh the right amount but should displace
the same volume as an equal weight of pure gold. He was so excited by this
idea that he reportedly ran naked through the streets shouting "Eureka" ("I
have found it")."

Hmm. Maybe I would be more creative if I took baths instead of showers. No
that's not it, I'm just not all that creative. Well, I do have other
qualities, including my love for books. Thanks again for sharing your love
of reading with all of us. As always, I enjoy your Dear Reader column as
much or more than the excerpts. Keep up the great work.


Richard Cameron

P.S. Next time you jump out of the tub, don't forget to shout Eureka!

Mary Beth Turek

Dear Suzanne,

You are not alone in your propensity for creative breakthroughs in the bath! I believe Agatha Christie used to always write in the bath. She had a special board she would prop across the tub, sort of like a breakfast-in-bed tray, to hold her paper, pens and snacks!

Keep on soaking and writing!

Mary Beth Turek


Suzanne, I love your book recommendations and had to respond to your quandry. I'd recently read some of the ideas around capturing ideas while in the shower at this site:

I'm sure some of them might work for a soak in the tub, too! It really is something about relaxing, tub, shower, car... that allows the creative to come out.

Keep us reading!

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