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My Son Likes Pi · 5 May 2013


My son likes pi. 3.141592653589793238462643383


Personally, I have found it sufficient to only know pi out to the fifth decimal place (the first 9 if anybody is checking), so I do not know why anybody needs to know pi out to the nth decimal place (27th in his case), but Thing 3 does. (I had him type it in and then I checked.)


If I was the blaming type, I would blame the school system on our son’s obsession with pi (“3 point 1 4 …”). Every math teacher seems to have a pi chart (pardon the pun) on the wall where pi is shown out to a hundred decimal places. Or more. Kids like to see who can memorize more digits than the others. At least my kid does.


Thing 3 also enjoys word play (like his father) and uses every opportunity to demonstrate both loves at once. Consequently, any time somebody says, “pie” in our house, Thing 3 starts reciting, “Three point one four one five nine, blah, blah, blah.” We always get pi with our pie. “3 point 1 4 1 5 9 …”


Speaking of pi (“3 point 1 4 1 5 9 2 6 5 …”), today is Thing 2’s birthday. We will be having pie today as it is the dessert he wants to share with his family. He got to have cupcakes with his friends yesterday, but he wants pie (“3 point 1 4 1 5 9 2 6 5 3 5 …”) today.


I am sure that each time somebody asks for another piece of pie we will hear the chant from Thing 3. “3 point 1 4 1 5 9 2 6 5 3 5 8 9 7 9 …” He will smile (like he always does) as he hears the pun and recites as far as he can before somebody interrupts him. “3 point 1 4 1 5 9 2 6 5 3 5 8 9 7 9 3 2 3 8 …” It is a ritual of which he never tires. “3 point 1 4 1 5 9 2 6 5 3 5 8 9 7 9 3 2 3 8 4 6 2 6 …”


The funny thing about Thing 3’s fascination with pi (“3 point 1 4 1 5 9 2 6 5 3 5 8 9 7 9 3 2 3 8 4 6 2 6 4 3 …”) is that if I recite it out with him, he will correct me if the digit needs to be rounded up. As a matter of fact, I am sure he wants to correct one of my numbers above.


Thankfully Thing 3’s fascination with pi does not include a need to celebrate pi day (March 14 for those who are not pi inclined). Nor do we need to get one of those pi charts (sorry again). We just get to hear pi out to the 27th decimal place (“3 point 1 4 1 5 9 2 6 5 3 5 8 9 7 9 3 2 3 8 4 6 2 6 4 3 3 8 3 …”) every time anybody says anything that sounds like pi.


Thing 3 would love it if everybody who read this post had subliminally memorized pi (“3 point 1 4 1 5 9 2 6 5 3 5 8 9 7 9 3 2 3 8 4 6 2 6 4 3 3 8 3 …”) out to the 27th digit. Of course, that was not the purpose, but he would love it if it was. After all, my son likes pi.


3.141592653589793238462643383

© 2013 Michael T. Miyoshi

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