Bill Sykes' Newsletter
An ex-Brit gives his views-(without fear
or favor)---of the American Scene
This one is for the mathematicians amongst you:
(Please read the following very carefully and
you will find that if you accentuate the positive and
eliminate the negative then it will all add up). These
words of mathematical and geometrical ingenuity come from
an unknown author.
At New York’s airport some weeks/months ago, or
so the story goes, an individual, (later to be discovered
to be a public school teacher), was arrested trying to
board a flight while in possession of a ruler, a protractor,
a set square, a slide rule, and a calculator.
At the following mornings press conference, Attorney General
John Ashcroft was reported to have said that he believes
that the man is a member of the notorious al-gebra movement.
He is being charged with carrying "weapons of math
"Al-gebra is a fearsome cult", Ashcroft declared.
They desire average solutions by means and extremes, and
sometimes go off on tangents in search of absolute values.
They use secret code names like "x" and "y"
and refer to themselves as "unknowns". But we
have determined that they belong to a common denominator
of the axis of medieval with coordinates in every country,
and as the Greek philanderer Isosceles used to say, "there
are three sides to every triangle".
When asked to comment on the person’s arrest,
President Bush was reported to have said, "If God
had wanted us to have better weapons of math instruction
he would have given us more fingers and toes".
The President then said, "I am gratified that our
government has given us a sine that it is intent on protracting
us from these mad dogs who are willing to disintegrate
us with calculus disregard", and added "statisticians
love to inflict a plane on every sphere of influence”.
He then went on to say. "Under the circumferences
we must differentiate their root, make our point, and
draw the line", and warned that, "These weapons
of math instruction have the potential to decimal everything
in their math on a scalene never before seen, unless we
become exponents of a higher power and begin to factor-in
random facts of vertex".
Attorney General Ashcroft was then reported to have said,
"As our great leader would say, read my ellipse.
There is one principal to be sure of, that although they
continue to multiply their days are numbered as the hypotenuse
tightens around their necks".
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