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More of the Same...Plus Some Light Bulb Humor

The esteemed Notices of the AMS (January 2005) included an article by Paul Renteln and Alan Dundes, entitled "Foolproof: A Sampling of Mathematical Folk Humor." Below is an offering that ranges from calculus to number theory to even the Bourbakis to ....Again, Enjoy or Boo & Hiss or even Scratch Your Head in Puzzlement!

Q: What is a proof?
A: One-half percent alcohol.

Q: What's very old, used by farmers, and obeys the fundamental theorem of arithmetic?
A: An antique tractorization domain.

Q: What is clear and used by trendy sophisticated engineers to solve other differential equations?
A: The Perrier transform.

Q: Why do truncated Maclaurin series fit the original function so well?
A: Because they are "Taylor" made.

Q: What is black and white ivory and fills space?
A: A piano curve.

Q: What does an analytic number theorist say when he is drowning?
A: Log-log, log-log, log-log,....

Q: How many topologists does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: Just one, but what will you do with the doughnut.

Q: How many number theorists does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: That is not known, but is conjectured to be an elegant prime.

Q: How many geometers does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: None. You can't do it with a straightedge and compass.

Q: How many analysts does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: Three. One to prove existence, one to prove uniqueness, and one to derive a nonconstructive algorithm to do it.

Q: How many mathematicians does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: 0.99999999....

Q: How many Bourbakists does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: Changing a light bulb is a special casze of a more general theorem concerning maintenance and repair of an electrical system. to establish upper and lower bounds for the number of personnel required, we must determine whether the sufficient conditions of Lemma 2.1 (Availability of personnel) and those of Corollary 2.3.55 (Motivation of personnel) apply. If and only if these conditions are met, we derive the result by an application of theorems in Section 3.1123. The resulting upper bound is, of course, a result in an abstract measure space, in the weak-* topology.