Saturday, March 21, 2009

Errant Math Joke Collection

Here's a bunch of Math Jokes I've collected. I find them decently amusing. Also, you can read these essays if you haven't already.

Solving an Equation:


What's the difference between having a Ph.D in Math and having a Pizza?
You can feed a family of four with a pizza.

Two Math Pick Up Lines

I'd like to be your derivate... you know, tangent to all your curves...
I'd love to be your integral... you know, the area under your curves...

Work It Out

What does a mathematician do about constipation?
He sits down and tries to work it out with a pencil.

Finding X:

A Math Limerick:

A mathematician confided
That the Mobius band is one-sided
And you'll get quite a laugh
If you cut one in half
'Cause it stays in one piece when divided.

Limerick by John Saxon:

A Dozen, a Gross and a Score,
plus three times the square root of four,
divided by seven,
plus five times eleven,
is nine squared and not a bit more.
((12 + 144 + 20 + (3 * 4^(1/2))) / 7) + (5 * 11) = 9^2 + 0

A more complex equation limerick:

Integral z-squared dz
from one to the cube root of three
times the cosine
of three pi over nine
equals log of the cube root of 'e'.
(this last line kind of makes more sense today as "Is ln the cube root of e")


Hot Air Balloon:

     Three men are in a hot-air balloon. Soon, they find themselves lost in a canyon somewhere. One of the three men says, "I've got an idea. We can call for help in this canyon and the echo will carry our voices far.
     So he leans over the basket and yells out, "Helllloooooo! Where are we?" (They hear the echo several times).
     15 minutes later, they hear this echoing voice: "Helllloooooo! You're lost!!"
     One of the men says, "That must have been a mathematician." Puzzled, one of the other men asks, "Why do you say that?" The reply: "For three reasons.
     (1) he took a long time to answer,
     (2) he was absolutely correct, and
     (3) his answer was absolutely useless.


What do you get when you cross a sherpa and a mountain goat?
Nothing. You can't cross two scalars.

The Party:

e^x goes to a party where a bunch of other functions are hanging out and having a good time, but e^x is just sitting in the corner looking miserable. After a while, another function comes over to e^x and says, "Hey man! What are you doing over here moping? Why don't you integrate yourself into the party and have a little fun?", and e^x says, "I can't! I've tried integrating myself over and over and it never seems to make any difference!"


Christmas and Halloween:

Q: Why do mathematicians often confuse Christmas and Halloween?
A: Because Oct 31 = Dec 25.

Absent Minded Professor:

     Norbert Wiener was in fact very absent minded. The following story is told about him: When they moved from Cambridge to Newton his wife, knowing that he would be absolutely useless on the move, packed him off to MIT while she directed the move. Since she was certain that he would forget that they had moved and where they had moved to, she wrote down the new address on a piece of paper, and gave it to him. Naturally, in the course of the day, an insight occurred to him. He reached in his pocket, found a piece of paper on which he furiously scribbled some notes, thought it over, decided there was a fallacy in his idea, and threw the piece of paper away. At the end of the day he went home (to the old address in Cambridge, of course). When he got there he realised that they had moved, that he had no idea where they had moved to, and that the piece of paper with the address was long gone. Fortunately inspiration struck. There was a young girl on the street and he conceived the idea of asking her where he had moved to, saying, "Excuse me, perhaps you know me. I'm Norbert Wiener and we've just moved. Would you know where we've moved to?" To which the young girl replied, "Yes daddy, mommy thought you would forget."

Favorite Subject:

     A math professor is talking to her little brother who just started his first year of graduate school in mathematics.
"What's your favorite thing about mathematics?" the brother wants to know.
"Knot theory."
"Yeah, me neither."


I know, I know it doesn't really quite work....


     At the end of his course on mathematical methods in optimization, the professor sternly looks at his students and says: "There is one final piece of advice I'm going to give you now: Whatever you have learned in my course - never ever try to apply it to your personal lives!"
     "Why?" the students ask.
     "Well, some years ago, I observed my wife preparing breakfast, and I noticed that she wasted a lot of time walking back and forth in the kitchen. So, I went to work, optimized the whole procedure, and told my wife about it."
     "And what happened?!"
     "Before I applied my expert knowledge, my wife needed about half an hour to prepare breakfast for the two of us. And now, it takes me less than fifteen minutes..."

The Math Professor's Affair

     When the math professor's wife returns home from work, she finds an envelope on the living room table. She opens it and finds a letter from her husband:
     My dearest wife,
     We have been married for nearly thirty years, and I still love you as much as on the day I proposed. You must realize, however, that you are now 54 years old and no longer able to satisfy certain needs I still have. I very much hope that you are not hurt to learn that, while you're reading this, I'm in a hotel room with an 18-year-old freshman girl from my calculus class. I'll be home before midnight.
     Your husband, who will never stop loving you.

When the professor returns from the hotel shortly before midnight, he also finds an envelope in the living room. He opens it and reads:

     My beloved husband,
     You may recall that you, too, are 54 years old and no longer able to satisfy certain needs I still have. I thus hope that you are not hurt to learn that, while you're reading this, I am in a hotel room with the 18-year-old pool boy.
     Your loving wife.
     P.S. As a mathematician, you are certainly aware of the fact that 18 goes into 54 many more times than 54 goes into 18. Therefore, don't stay up and wait for me.

Tale of the Battle

     There were three medieval kingdoms on the shores of a lake. There was an island in the middle of the lake, over which the kingdoms had been fighting for years. Finally, the three kings decided that they would send their knights out to do battle, and the winner would take the island.
     The night before the battle, the knights and their squires pitched camp and readied themselves for the fight. The first kingdom had 12 knights, and each knight had five squires, all of whom were busily polishing armor, brushing horses, and cooking food. The second kingdom had twenty knights, and each knight had 10 squires. Everyone at that camp was also busy preparing for battle. At the camp of the third kingdom, there was only one knight, with his squire. This squire took a large pot and hung it from a looped rope in a tall tree. He busied himself preparing the meal, while the knight polished his own armor.
     When the hour of the battle came, the three kingdoms sent their squires out to fight (this was too trivial a matter for the knights to join in).
     The battle raged, and when the dust had cleared, the only person left was the lone squire from the third kingdom, having defeated the squires from the other two kingdoms, thus proving that the squire of the high pot and noose is equal to the sum of the squires of the other two sides.

Did I Get the Job? (Yes, not really math...)

Wasting Money:

Dean, to the physics department: "Why do I always have to give you guys so much money? Your laboratories and equipment are so expensive? Why can't you be like the math department - all they need is money for pencils, paper and waste-paper baskets. Or even better, like the philosophy department. All they need are the pencils and paper."


A famous mathematician was to give a keynote speech at a conference. Asked for an advance summary, he said he would present a proof of Fermat's Last Theorem -- but they should keep it under their hats. When he arrived, though, he spoke on a much more prosaic topic. Afterwards the conference organizers asked why he said he'd talk about the theorem and then didn't. He replied this was his standard practice, just in case he was killed on the way to the conference.


A Quiz:

What follows is a "quiz". It's multiple choice, and if you sort the letters (with upper and lower case disjoint) questions and answers will come out next to each other. Enjoy...

S. What the acorn said when he grew up
N. bisects
u. A dead parrot
g. centre
F. What you should do when it rains
R. hypotenuse
m. A geometer who has been to the beach
H. coincide
h. The set of cards is missing
y. polygon
A. The boy has a speech defect
t. secant
K. How they schedule gym class
p. tangent
b. What he did when his mother-in-law wanted to go home
D. ellipse
O. The tall kettle boiling on the stove
W. geometry
r. Why the girl doesn't run a 4-minute mile
j. decagon

A Train Problem

Helping Ralph with Homework:

Ralph: Dad, will you do my math for me tonight?
Dad: No, son, it wouldn't be right.
Ralph: You don't know until you try!


What do you call a young eigensheep?
A lamb, duh!!!

The Ark:

The ark lands after The Flood. Noah lets all the animals out. Says, "Go and multiply." Several months pass. Noah decides to check up on the animals. All are doing fine except a pair of snakes. "What's the problem?" says Noah. "Cut down some trees and let us live there", say the snakes. Noah follows their advice. Several more weeks pass. Noah checks on the snakes again. Lots of little snakes, everybody is happy. Noah asks, "Want to tell me how the trees helped?" "Certainly", say the snakes. "We're adders, and we need logs to multiply."

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