The Royal Chain Mail Factory had received a large order for battle uniforms. Each uniform consisted of a chain-mail toga and a pair of chain-mail short pants. Their only problem was how long to make the pants: too short and a soldier could be exposed; too long and a uniform would be excessively heavy.
Perplexed most by the problem was the Royal Mathematician. He had a uniform made and tested. The hem on the pants proved to be too short, so he increased it a little bit, then a little more, and then a little bit more, and so on until finally he was able to derive an exact relationship between the trouser-length and the leg-length of the soldier.
The chief tailor was curious. “How did you determine this ratio?” he asked?
“Easy,” said the Mathematician. “I just used the Wire-trousers Hem Test of Uniform Convergence.”
There was once a very smart horse. Anything that was shown it, it mastered easily.
That is until the day its teachers tried to teach it about analytic geometry. To there surprise, the horse simply could not understand rectangular coordinates at all. All the horse’s acquaintances and friends tried to help, but neither they nor the horse could figure out what was the matter, and the so the horse continued to be confused by the subject.
Finally, a mathematician was brought in to assist. He looked at the problem, and then shook his head. “Of course he can’t do it,” he replied. “Do you know you’re putting Descartes before the horse?”
A man travelling through the Orient passed a small courtyard and heard voices murmuring. He went in and saw an altar with a large stone O in the middle. White-robed people were kneeling before the altar, softly chanting “Nil… nil… nil…” while ceremonial priests sang prayers to The Great Nullity and The Blessed Emptiness.
Eventually, the man turned to a white-robed observer beside him and asked “Is Nothing sacred?”
There were three Medieval kingdoms on the shores of a lake. There was an island in the middle of the lake, which the kingdoms had been fighting over 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 5 squires, all of whom were busily polishing armor, brushing horses, and cooking food. The second kingdom had 20 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 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.
A tribe of Native Americans generally referred to their woman by the animal hide with which they made their blanket. Thus, one woman might be known as Squaw of Buffalo Hide, while another might be known as Squaw of Deer Hide. This tribe had a particularly large and strong woman, with a very unique (for North America anyway) animal hide for her blanket. This woman was known as Squaw of Hippopotamus hide, and she was as large and powerful as the animal from which her blanket was made.
Year after year, this woman entered the tribal wrestling tournament, and easily defeated all challengers; male or female. As the men of the tribe admired her strength and power, this made many of the other woman of the tribe extremely jealous. One year, two of the squaws petitioned the Chief to allow them to enter their sons together as a wrestling tandem in order to wrestle Squaw of the Hippopotamus hide as a team. In this way, they hoped to see that she would no longer be champion wrestler of the tribe.
As the luck of the draw would have it, the two sons who were wrestling as a tandem met the squaw in the final and championship round of the wrestling contest. As the match began, it became clear that the squaw had finally met an opponent that was her equal. The two sons wrestled and struggled vigorously and were clearly on an equal footing with the powerful squaw. Their match lasted for hours without a clear victor. Finally the chief intervened and declared that, in the interests of the health and safety of the wrestlers, the match was to be terminated and that he would declare a winner.
The chief retired to his teepee and contemplated the great struggle he had witnessed, and found it extremely difficult to decide a winner. While the two young men had clearly outmatched the squaw, he found it difficult to force the squaw to relinquish her tribal championship. After all, it had taken two young men to finally provide her with a decent match. Finally, after much deliberation, the chief came out from his teepee, and announced his decision. He said…
“The Squaw of the Hippopotamus hide is equal to the sons of the squaws of the other two hides.”
A group of Polish tourists is flying on a small airplane through the Grand Canyon on a sightseeing tour. The tour guide announces: “On the right of the airplane, you can see the famous Bright Angle Falls.” The tourists leap out of their seats and crowd to the windows on the right side. This causes a dynamic imbalance, and the plane violently rolls to the side and crashes into the canyon wall. All aboard are lost.
The moral to this story? Always keep your poles off the right side of the plane.
A bunch of Polish scientists decided to flee their repressive government by hijacking an airliner and forcing the pilot to fly them to a western country. They drove to the airport, forced their way on board a large passenger jet, and found there was no pilot on board. Terrified, they listened as the sirens got louder. Finally, one of the scientists suggested that since he was an experimentalist, he would try to fly the aircraft.
He sat down at the controls and tried to figure them out. The sirens got louder and louder. Armed men surrounded the jet. The would be pilot’s friends cried out, “Please, please take off now! Hurry!!”
The experimentalist calmly replied, “Have patience. I’m just a simple pole in a complex plane.”
A husband is beginning to worry that the passion has gone out of his marriage. He starts going secretly to a marriage counselor in order to find ways to spice up his marriage and satisfy his wife. The counselor listens, and instructs him to get a bear-skin rug for his living room.
The husband goes right our and buys the biggest bear-skin rug that he can find. He takes it home and drapes it across the hardwood floor. As soon as his wife came home from work, she spied the rug and suddenly grabbed her husband’s hand, took him upstairs, and treated him to the wildest night of passion they’d had since they were both teenagers.
The next day, the husband, truly greatful, returned to the counselor to say thanks. “By the way, how did you know that the bear-skin rug would do the trick?”
“Simple mathematics,” replied the counselor. “It’s Fur Mats Lust Theorem.”
In the bayous of Louisiana, there is a small river called the Dirac. Many wealthy people have their mansions near its mouth. One of the social leaders decided to have a grand ball. Being a cousin of the Governor, she arranged for a detachment of the state militia to serve as guards and traffic directors for the big doings. A captain was sent over with a small company; naturally he asked if there was enough room for him and his unit. The social leader replied, “But of course, Captain! It is well known that the Dirac delta function has unit area.”
A mathematician gives a talk intended for a general audience. The talk is announced in the local newspaper, but he expects few people to show up because nobody who is not a mathematician will be able to make any sense of the title: Convex sets and inequalities.
To his surprise, the auditorium is crammed when his talk begins. After he has finished, someone in the audience raises his hand.
“But you said nothing about the actual topic of your talk!”
“What topic to you mean?”
“Well, the one that was announced in the paper: Convicts, sex, and inequality.”