Numeric Nonsense

Fraser’s Spiral

The Fraser’s spiral illusion is an optical illusion that was first described by the British psychologist Sir James Fraser. The illusion is also known as the false spiral or by its original name, the twisted cord illusion. The overlapping black arc segments appear to form a spiral, but the arcs are in fact concentric circles. The visual distortion is produced by combining a regular line pattern (the black circles) with misaligned parts (the differently colored strands). It is like many other visual effects, in which a sequence of tilted elements cause the eye to perceive phantom twists and deviations. The illusion is augmented by the spiral components in the checkered background. It is a unique illusion, where the observer can verify the concentric strands manually. When the strands are colored differently, it becomes obvious to the observer that no spiral is present. So class, take out your Sharpie and outline one of these circles on your screen.

Infinitely many mathematicians walk into a bar. The first says, “I’ll have a beer.” The second says, “I’ll have half a beer.” The third says, “I’ll have a quarter of a beer.” The barman pulls out just two beers. The mathematicians are all like, “That’s all you’re giving us? How drunk do you expect us to get on that?” The bartender says, “Come on guys. Know your limits.”

G.H. Hardy, an Oxford and Cambridge mathematics professor, professed to be an atheist, but in dealing with providence, he bore in mind the possibility that life’s operation might, after all, be manipulated by God, with an understandably low opinion of Hardy. He also considered air travel dangerous. Once, shortly after Hardy had left on an overseas flight, a colleague found a note lying on his desk that read, “I have proven Fermat’s last theorem.” The news spread and by the time Hardy returned home all the world was agog to learn the proof. Hardy had to explain that he had not proved it—the note had been insurance. God, he said, had been forced to bring him back alive to show him up as an imposter.

How many mathematicians does it take to change a light bulb? One: she gives it to three physicists, thus reducing it to a problem that has already been solved.

Find x

Why’d the chicken cross the road? The answer is trivial & is left as an exercise.

Finally, I’ll leave you with Mathgen, an Internet toy that allows you to generate fake scientific papers. It is a program to randomly generate professional-looking mathematics papers, including theorems, proofs, equations, discussion, and references. Try it for yourself! Here is one of mine: Fermat’s Last Theorem, M. Regenaxe, T. Maxwell and V. Fermat. The results look realistic enough. Just don’t hang around so long that you are asked to explain them. 

All that Glitters

Tablecloth, Milky Way, Marguerita Mergentime, 1939

Anne’s yarn-a-month club gift box states that she “crafts so hard that she sweats glitter,” which really makes a mess, especially in-between the sheets. Glitter in bed is worse than beach sand, if you ask me. Still, I was intrigued by Caity Weaver’s New York Times article about glitter. In it she waxes poetic, while describing a glitter factory’s appearance that she visited for her story:

…which looked like an industrial manufacturing plant colonized by pixies. The concrete floor was finely coated with what appeared to be crushed moonbeams. The forklift winked with shiny crimson flecks.

I was actually more intrigued with the underlying science. There wasn’t all that much in her article, trade secrets precluded many disclosures, but one could read between the lines. I’ve had some similar experience that guides my guesses on how glitter is made. Those processes were even more closely guarded than gold.

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Boxing Day, the day after Christmas, the day that the boys practice pugilism. We got out and about today. First, lunch and Literati, which I kept wanting to call Illuminati. Anne and I walked home from there, the boys taking the car, having more boxing yet to do.

Lunch was at the Blue Tractor, which was not as good as Grizzly’s, even though Grizzly’s serves the beer brewed at the Tractor, but more about that later. The luncheon clientele consisted primarily of families with small children. The table next to us had two couples, with between them four children in high chairs, plus one still strapped to mom. Anne observed that everyone was taking their kids out to lunch, which we were too, but I also observed that our boys were bigger and could probably take anyone else’s there. Boxing Day, don’t you know.

Ordering there was somewhat difficult. The first beer selection that Dave chose, they were out of. So too for the first beer that Dan ordered and again for Dave’s second attempt. They were also out of the food that I first ordered and the same for Dave. We did all eventually get food and drink, but when it came time to pay the bill, both the first and second pens handed to me were out of ink. 

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Back to the glitterati. On the way home, Anne told me a glitter related joke. It is a little bit racy, but here it goes:

A woman getting ready for her GYN appointment, first took a washcloth to her lady parts. Her doctor upon examination commented, “Wow, you really did something special.” “Thank you for noticing,” she replied. Returning home, she was immediately queried by her teenage daughter, “Mom have you seen the washcloth that I used to clean off my glitter makeup?”  

The Smocking Gun

The Smocking Gun

This is a National Emergy! Many people say that my text massages are very well written, but the Fake News distorts everything I say. It is unpresidented. It is such a waist. I have written many best selling books and somewhat priding myself on my ability to write. The worse ones are the WH press core. Their press covfefe was so mean. Thr coverage about me gas been so false and angry. They never treated Barrack Obama the way they do me, even though he tapp me. I am honered to be your 45th President of the United States. This is a roll that I was elected to, even though there were many amoung you who thought that I would loose. My WH council says that because of the special councel, I should not tweet so much. Melanie says the same, but what does she know. 

A Christmas Toad

A Christmas Toad

This post is the story of a blogger who goes undercover and masquerades as a smart teacher to get the inside scoop on a playboy toad and then gets tangled in some royal intrigue and ends up finding true luv or at least some warts, but how long can you keep up such a lie? “Where there’s a Tiara, there’s dirt. Trust me.” 

At this point, you the reader might be asking yourself, shouldn’t this piece be about a Christmas frog? I mean in fairy-tales the princess kisses a frog not a toad and gets her charming prince. Well, not to get all Anura on you, but the whole prince-frog trope has been done so many times. Order! Order! I mean, it has gotten to be so tiresome. Let’s try to mix it up some. Shall we?

Back to the story. What we’ve got here is a legit Aldovian birther scandal. The prince, I mean toad, may have been born in Kenya, but why do all of his Aldovian relatives have British accents? If at this point, like at the beginning, you feel that you know everything that will happen in this story, don’t tell me.

This is a story of his royal hotness, at least on a summer’s day. Otherwise, even  with darting tongue, he is just sort of ambient. Still, as the leading amphibian, you find romance in the darnedest places. Just don’t drain the swamp. We need more wetlands after all. That’s enough ecological soap-boxing for now. 

It is so heartwarming to see that Aldovians with disabilities has become the law of the land. Not to get all political on you again, but the acorn act has got to go. It is hardly constitutional to govern through ornamental proclamations. Ah, but a king’s reach from beyond the grave should never exceed his grasp, or what’s a parliament for? Beside big set pieces that is…

Please don’t throw me to the wolves. I had to get them in here, but truly, I have not watched A Christmas Toad or whatever you want to call it. Humbug! That’s my big reveal. I just heard on NPR that its sequel drops today and thought that it was a subject rife for derision. I hope dear reader that you have enjoyed my snark and like I asked, please don’t throw me to the wolves. They’re protected.

It’s no mystery that this post is just a puff piece. That’s not rocket science. As satire, it is not even very good theater, but still, I hope that it garners like 3,000 likes. And I admire the fact that you read my blog online, instead of anywhere else. You know who you are. And to the people who have reread this post 18 times: Who hurt you? – Net-Flics

Wordplay

California Poppies

I’m a sucker for wordplay. Here’s a few from a list that I found on Buzzfeed:

  • The past, the present and the future walk into a bar. It was tense. 
  • Hyphenated, non-hyphenated, how ironic.
  • i before e, except when your foreign neighbor Keith received eight counterfeit beige sleighs from feisty caffeinated weightlifters. Weird.
  • Doctor: I’m afraid that you have onomatopoeia.
    Patient: Oh no! What is that?
    Doctor: It’s exactly what it sounds like.
  • What if women had apostrophes instead of periods?
    They’d be even more possessive and prone to contractions.
  • Teacher: Name two pronouns.
    Student: Who? Me?
  • Let’s eat Grandma.
    Let’s eat, Grandma.
    Commas save lives.
  • An oxymoron walked into a bar and the silence was deafening.
  • Today, I will be as useless as the “g” in lasagna.
  • A dangling modifier walks into a bar. After finishing a drink, the bartender asks it to leave.
  • I’m so adjective, I verb nouns.