Two and a half years in, I'm still kind of a dope about the metric system. It's not converting within the system - that is so mercifully easy and makes me sort of hate the imperial system. It's just having an idea of the sizes. I know what a centimeter looks like thanks to having it on the other side of all my rulers growing up. I have a good idea of one meter, since it's so close to one yard. And thanks to all the drinks I've had at restaurants, I'm pretty clear on 0.2 and 0.5 liters! I've also successfully revamped the way I think about temperatures and centigrade weather temperatures are good enough for me now without having to make any conversions in my head. Still have to whip out the converter feature on my cell phone for oven temperatures, though.
But when it comes to other things I have big problems! The restaurant is 200 meters that way? God help me - you might as well say how many miles it is, both are too abstract for me. Please tell me number of blocks or landmarks! People have also asked me how many meters away something is. Not a clue unless it's 3 or fewer meters away. I still can't remember my height in centimeters, either, although I've got my weight in kilograms down. I've got no idea about kilometers per hour, although I know that 300 km/h is a fast train! My grasp on grams - for instance, being able to say how many grams an apple weighs - is still sketchy.
This week xkcd.com has a cute metrics guide for those with similar problems:
Go here to see the whole thing, since it's cutting off on the side of my blog.
And, who loves Atom? We (the US) should use metrics because "Canadians will think we're smart! Or, at least, they will think we are not as dumb!"
Atom and His Package, "(Lord It's Hard to Be Happy When You're Not) Using the Metric System":
And speaking of the US, and while I'm on YouTube, I think you should watch this! :)