(70 + 9)x(80 + 6)
70x80 + 9x80 + 6x70 + 6x9
56(00) + 72(0) + 42(0) + 54
Guess what - long story short you need to know your times tables. I don't see how the lines method is any easier than long multiplication, which in itself is not hard with a little time and explanation. If you can use the lines, or any other method, as a way of conveying what I did above - then you've succeeded.
Edit: Stars go to italics and I don't know the escape character
I think you can only do * with an unpaired * terminator * ?
I think you can only do * with an unpaired * terminator ?
I think you can only do xx with an unpaired xx terminator xx ?
[that line is this with no spaces around :I think you can only do x * x with an unpaired x * x terminator x * x ?
Nope, looks like as long as it's spaced from the prior/next character then it doesn't cause italicisation.
Help says: "Text surrounded by asterisks is italicized, if the character after the first asterisk isn't whitespace."
You probably learned multiplication using something similar to the lines method. If you had 3 x 4, you'd draw out 3 circles and then put 4 more circles inside and count up all the small ones. This is just a logical extension of that.