I was an average student up until I finished high school. Why was I just “average”? Well, you see, I was top of the class in English, a born writer. I won every spelling bee in grammar school. I made A’s in history and geography and in anything that interested me, like biology.

But I flunked every math course I ever took, and when I took the course over, I usually passed it with a “D”. No wonder it took so many years to get into vet school. I totaled “average”.

However, things turned out well. I did finally become a veterinarian and practiced happily and successfully, and my writing and cartooning talents blossomed as the years went by. I still can’t do math. Long division stumps me. I “round off” numbers.

But, I have had twenty-two books published. True, a dozen are cartoon books, but you have to write the captions, right? The newest book, available from robertmmiller.com (don’t leave out the middle “M”, there are more Bob Millers than there are John Smiths), is Cowboy Practical Jokes. It is a combination of cartoons and hard-to-believe true stories about very, very funny practical jokes. Even though I wrote it I still crack up when I read it, because the incidents are all true and impossibly funny.

On the other hand, I cannot quote the price and I don’t know how many pages or chapters there are. You see, I’m bad in math. Really bad.

The fourth time I was turned down as a veterinary student, I asked the Dean why. He said, “Well, for one thing, you don’t have enough math. You need trigonometry.”

I asked him if I could substitute a course called “Agricultural Mathematics”. It was required for my Bachelor’s degree at the University of Arizona College of Agriculture where I majored in Animal Husbandry. The Dean approved, because the course was in the Math Department.

I made an A in Agricultural Math. That’s because it was actually a marketing course. I never did study Triggernometry. I don’t even know how to spell it.

The Final Exam for Agricultural Math was an essay, so that’s why I got an A. No numbers were involved.

Anyway, I was involved in many of the practical jokes described in the book, either as a victim or as perpetrator. In other cases, I was told about the prank by a reliable witness. The episodes mostly occurred during summer ranch jobs, or in veterinary school, or in practice.

I dedicated the book to my friend and colleague, Dr. Rex Hinshaw, of Prescott, Arizona. From him I learned of an incredible practical joke played upon his Alma Mater and which is still in effect after more than half a century. Must be a world’s record.

Curious? Read the book! Then ask Rex if it is true. It is. Hard to believe, but — it’s true!