So far there are two possibilities. A) I’m remembering a story by a different autho, which I don’t think is the case. Or, B) this is the first bleg to ever stump readers. Lots and lots of folks have suggested that it was this or that short story by this or that other author, but none of them sound right to me. I did read a lot of sci-fi short story collections when I was a kid so it’s possible I’m confused.
This email seems irrefutable:
Subject: “R” IS FOR ROCKET?
How about “N” is for “Nerd”. Sorry – irresistible cheap shot from a longtime fan.