Today is March 14. National Pi Day. Not to be confused with Pie Day which was back in January. Pi as in 3.14159265and on and on and on forever and ever with no end or at least no one has found the end yet. That pi.
Never ever will I understand Pi.
All it does is make me hungry.
Let me stop right here and say to all you math fans, you may want to skip this post. My confession and confusion may frustrate and annoy you. Please don’t feel the need to educate me, I’m okay with my cluelessness. I’ve made it this far.
Of course there was a time when I was forced to face Pi head on. I did what any clever student would do. I faked it. I memorized what was needed to get through a geometry test (sorry Mrs. Meadows), the school year, high school, and so on (just like pi)… In the off chance I actually learned something about Pi during high school, I evidently forgot it because I never used it.
And just because Pi has its own day doesn’t really make it a big deal. Everything has its own day. For those of us who don’t embrace Pi, tomorrow is Everything You Think Is Wrong Day… (like Pi?)
I sought clarification and understanding from the official Pi Day dot org website which even includes a freakin count down! Like its Christmas or something. (They also sell Pi t-shirts and coffee mugs…Yes.They.Do.) Pi Day dot org offered the following explanation:
Pi (Greek letter “π”) is the symbol used in mathematics to represent a constant — the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter — which is approximately 3.14159. Pi has been calculated to over one trillion digits beyond its decimal point. As an irrational and transcendental number, it will continue infinitely without repetition or pattern. While only a handful of digits are needed for typical calculations, Pi’s infinite nature makes it a fun challenge to memorize, and to computationally calculate more and more digits.
Okay Pi Day people, the only thing I understood from this was the word irrational, and I couldn’t agree more. I got a bit lost right off the bat at the word constant. Don’t laugh, I’m being serious. I hate to disappoint, but since tenth grade I haven’t calculated the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter. Do people sit around doing this? I question why anyone would calculate anything to over one trillion digits… And just so you know, after the word transcendental, I heard Charlie Brown’s teacher in my head.
I realize I’m showing my ignorance. Just being honest. Even so, I can still appreciate a day of celebration.
Grace Grits and Gardening
“…all numbers are by their nature correct. Well, except for Pi, of course. I can’t be doing with Pi. Gives me a headache just thinking about it, going on and on and on and on and on….”
“The world isn’t just the way it is. It is how we understand it.”
― Yann Martel, Life of Pi