Stan Crader

Author & Lecturer on Writing About Rural America

Saturday is Archimedes Pi Day

Remember when you first learned about Pi and then, in an attempt to prove and display superior intelligence, ran around the playground stirring up the underclassmen by screaming at them, “pie are square?” The act usually had the reverse affect, leaving the underclassmen with a sense of both superior intellect and momentary sympathy for the upperclassman that had lost their minds. Everyone knows that pies are round–semantics. Semantics began rearing its dreary head before we knew the meaning of the word. For example, the term ‘underclassmen’ is no longer politically correct. It takes courage to be both politically incorrect and semantically confusing. I’m brave!

Let’s review. Pi is an irrational and transcendental number. Just in case you’re like me and most of the population, I’ll explain, this eruditious term simply means Pi continues infinitely without repetition or pattern. By the way, eruditious isn’t a recognized word. That’s all fine and dandy, but the Pi we all love and remember is the capped double squiggly line symbol that represents 3.14, which is the common multiplier used to determine a circle’s circumference…3.14 x the square of the radius, which is the root of the playground chant.

Begin the day this Saturday by telling the first people you see,” today is the day we celebrate the world’s most famous irrational transcendental number.” You’ll no doubt get some irrational looks for rational reasons. And when that special someone gives you that dog-whistle look, simply say, “pie are square,” with a sentence-ending valley speak uptick inflection.

Why is Saturday Pi day? Glad you asked. Unlike all of those discriminatory Hallmark Card promoted days, such as mother’s, father’s, parent’s, grandparent’s, secretary’s, boss’s, and the list goes on, Pi day actually makes sense. Friday is March 14, 2015, or presented another way—3/14/15, which is representative of Pi’s first five numbers…3.1415.

The best part…it’s the one special equal opportunity day on which you don’t need to buy someone a card. Pi are square, but pie is round; celebrate 3.1415 by having an irregular triangular piece of your favorite circular dessert while calculating the circumference of the pie by using Pi.

Was Archimedes the inspiration for Archie, the comic book character?


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