Division, the process of dividing, is an odd duck.
In math, division makes things smaller.
Simultaneously, however, in biology, division makes things more numerous.
After all, division, as in meiosis, deals with the propagation of the species.
Similarly, though not identically, division, as in mitosis, sees the replication of whole cells, the propagation of a part; one mother cell becomes two identical daughter cells.
Division, like sex, can also lead to many challenges.
Seemingly sidling away from the topic of division, the Heroine, the Hero, and your humble scribe all love cheese, hard and soft cheeses both.
This hardly seems related to division, let alone problems.
Humble scribe, you may say, first, cheese is a mixture, not a separation; no division is required to make cheese, no, things are added. Second, you may say, if you like cheese, then cheese is hardly a problem.
But, gentle reader, you will, I am sure, concede that the hard/soft cheese dichotomy is clearly a categorical division.
And, on closer inspection, cheese is the product of physical division.
Yes, cheese is derived from a protein, fat, and water slurry, but, the special feature of cheese production is how that slurry is modified by dividing, and hence expanding, colonies of bacteria.
Division abounds and division is at the heart of the creation of cheeses (especially soft cheeses, where the bacteria at their centres, their hearts, are frequently most active).
So, where lies the problem?
The problem lies not in the creation of cheese, gentle reader, but in the division of the same.
For most cheeses, most people use knives to split cheeses, to divide them, to share them.
Almost all soft cheeses have to be cut to properly get to the fruits of their constituent bacterial guests' lives' labours, the steamy, fragrant divisional product of bacterial culture.
Now, usually, soft cheeses are cut into wedges prior to further division then consumption.
And, this is where the sexual problems of division begin, or, more accurately, the problems between the sexes, in our house, begin.
One divisional problem, portion equity, is well documented by that great Dane, Piet Hein (1905-1996).
SOCIAL MECHANISM (by Piet Hein)
When people alwaystry to takethe very smallestpiece of cakehow can it alsoalways bethat that's the onethat's left for me?
It should be noted that while Piet Hein was talking about (just) desserts, I believe that the same principle can be applied to cheeses.
After all, a savoury cheese platter may precede, follow, or even substitute for a sweet dessert.
It should also be noted that the Danes know whereof they speak, when they speak of division.
In the beginning, Danes acquired by dividing others' lands and things. They then amalgamated these divisions (from others' holdings) to their own holdings.
For a long while, the Danes never saw any problem with this.
It was when the Swedes started dividing Danish spoils, for their Swedish selves, that the joy of division was spoiled for the Danes.
(Here, one could note, is where Einstein's propositions on the importance of the observer, in physical dynamics, and relativity in general, make their application in social dynamics, long before Einstein was even around to observe or remark...)
Back to the present day and to the cheese.
Your Heroine, though of Northern European extraction, is relatively scrupulous regarding portion size when she creates fromage frontiers.
She steers clear of the Piet Hein Problem.
The Heroine's failing, from your humble scribe's perspective, is that she keeps the best parts for herself; she high grades; she takes the central part of soft cheeses.
The central part, the thin edge of the wedge, is, of course, where the bacterial culture, in soft cheeses, has had its strongest and greatest effects on flavour and on texture.
One must remember, though, that the Heroine is German; cultural high-grading is in her blood.
Germans love all things to do with culture; Goethe, Schiller, Cranach, Flanders, France...
Hurriedly skipping back to the cheese plate, your humble scribe has fulminated greatly on divisions, especially as a recipient of the outer, lesser graded sections of wedges of soft cheese.
So, today, I indulge myself and divide my thoughts ten ways to generate ten haiku along the simple theme of division.
For my pleasure, here they are:
If you take your cheese v. seriously...divorce might be rightthis separation? no good.i want high grade too
Early biological classificationanimaliaand vegetabiliaAristotle's split
*** Humble scribe's note of the use of poetic license.
It was the great Swedish classifier Carl von Linné (1707-1778), better known by his Latinized name, Carolus Linnaeus, who divided living organisms under the specific descriptors animalia and vegetabilia. But, Aristotle (384-322 BC) did separate the world into animals and vegetables, too (and almost 21 centuries earlier).
Aristotle just did it in Greek.
Animaliamulticellularsoft cell walls and motile, tooheterotrophic
Plantaemulticell(s/ulose)meiosis yields haploid cellsphotosynthesis
Innie and outie100 "k" "m"lowest earth orbit that worksinner/outer space
Western expansion in the USA, where does it begin?Demarcation, here.one hundredth meridianwet east/arid west
Peace, Order, and Good Government (POGG) versus Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happinessor, duelling values in constitutional residual clausesor, communalism (community values) vs. individualism (individual values)Canada: POGG (rules)the forty-ninth parallelUS: U. Party
How China, with Hong Kong, or Macau, copies Canada's handling of difference...deux cultures, un paysje me souviens, mais oui...two systems, one state
For the non-Canadian scholars, Canada not only has two languages, English and French, enshrined in the constitution, it also uses the continental legal system in its second biggest province, by population, Quebec.
Much of past-Prime Minister Brian Mulroney's testimony in a recenty inquiry was predicated upon a totally different legal regime than what Anglo Canada is used to, and I fear that these legal distinctions were lost on the majority of the populace judging by the polemical online comments on news articles posted in the national, public news media.
A further examples of demagoguery, in extremis...
Political religious divides on the great subcontinentHindu/Muslim splitpartition '47nation rent; two form...
*** Author's aside: I prefer this haiku orally when the "two" could equally be heard as "to"...
A division of colonial power aloneAfrican land/lorduti possedetis; changelord not boundaries
And ten is more than enough, I am sure.