# A Glut of Math Jokes

The Optimist & the Pessimist

The statistician, meanwhile, is not going to draw any hasty conclusions about glass fullness from a data set where n=1.

The Venn Diagram of Practicality and Fuzziness

Did I reverse-engineer the “practical” and “fuzzy” labels to make the diagram work? YOU HAD BETTER BELIEVE IT MY BLOG-READING FRIEND

Temperature/Pressure Diagrams

In hindsight I would draw this one rather differently. The existing diagram suggests that increasing life pressure can drive me from coffee to iced coffee (maybe true) but also that increased ambient temperature can drive me from iced coffee to lemonade (definitely false).

“What, are you saying the devil doesn’t deserve due process?”
“Yes! And also, the devil’s not on trial! We really don’t need the devil to have a representative in every meeting!

A Package for the Square Root of 2

Far and away the most positive response I’ve gotten for a cartoon on Facebook! It goes to show, I have no idea what cartoons people will love.

Step Count

I’ve seen 7th-graders do this not for fitness-related reasons, just for the love of the game. Right on, 7th-graders. Take the scenic route to an answer.

Platonic States of Matter

Alas, it’s very hard to tell Platonic liquids from Archimedean liquids – or irregular liquids, for that matter.

Data vs. Anecdotes

Prime Factorization

G.H. Hardy confidently asserted that number theory would never serve any “warlike purpose,” but I think we can all agree that G.H. Hardy was a rube and a fool.

Infimum Wage

I mean, what if there’s an infinite sequence of workers making \$8 + 1/n?

Scooped

Preliminary data points towards “probably not.”

“Are you finishing soon?
[bloodcurdling scream]Â “THE AGONY!!! OH, THE AGONY…”
“Nice, only two years left! Good luck with your thesis project.”

Time Moves Fast

This joke never gets old! Well, it does, but only at a rate of 1 year per year.

How Many Negatives Make a Positive?

I think this phrase is more useful in describing language (where it’s sometimes true, and at least easy to interpret) than in math (where it just confuses).

The Equation’s Story

Really, this equation is a murder mystery. One of the variables is zero, and you’ve got to find out which one!

(Twist ending: it’s both.)

Nuts and Bolts

Sounds like… a breakfast cereal? Or something to do with why tables don’t fall down? I’ve always wondered about that…

How Excited

8.7! That is pretty darn excited.

## 15 thoughts on “A Glut of Math Jokes”

1. monkey wonder where beer lie on temperature/pressure diagram.

1. Beer never lie, monkey.

2. From the great movie A Man for All Seasons:

Sir Thomas More: And go he should, if he were the Devil himself, until he broke the law.

William Roper: So, now you give the Devil the benefit of law!

Sir Thomas More: Yes! What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

William Roper: Yes, I’d cut down every law in England to do that!

Sir Thomas More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned ’round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast, Man’s laws, not God’s! And if you cut them down, and you’re just the man to do it, do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I’d give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety’s sake!

Video clip (above starts at 2:25 or so, but it’s all worth listening to).

3. Doug M says:

On glasses:
The Engineer says the glass has a 2x safety factor
The Economist says that there is excess capacity.

Cubes
I read the other day that the Queen insists that drinks be served with spherical-ice-cubes. What is a spherical cube?

Grad school — I didn’t pursue it myself. But looking at my friends on a PhD track.
Years 1 and 2 take course work.
Year 3 write thesis.

Stories.

Looks like one more variation on the Freshman’s dream. A familiar theme that has been retold many times. I had thought it was pure fantasy. Then in I learned about commutative rings of characteristic p.

1. Hey Doug! I have something I’d love to email you about but I realized I don’t have an email for you – if you see this, would you mind getting in touch with me? (My email is just the name of the blog at gmail).

4. Sanjay B.Kulkarni says:

Best way to create a maths mindset.

5. drkottaway says:

Frabjous drawings and stories! Love it, thank you and happy new year!

6. Mark Woodward says:

Double Positive — A linguist was teaching a class at an American university, and explained that a double negative could make a positive, but there was no language in the world in which a double positive made a negative. A heckler replied bluntly, “Yeah, right.”