March 23, 2017

I know– pi day was a week ago, or 8 days ago to be exact. But with 3(.14159?) midterms last week, I don’t think I had the chance to properly appreciate pi day. So I will try my best to do that today.

Have you ever thought about why we call certain numbers rational and others irrational? To me it always seemed like we were the irrational ones for classifying numbers as “reasonable” or “unreasonable” based on whether they had definite values.

An irrational number: A real number that cannot be expressed as a ratio p/q such that p and q are integers. (having serious EN.550.171 flashbacks as I type this)

By mathematical definition pi is by all means an irrational number. But think about it this way: within the limitless digits of pi, any combination of digits can be found. Maybe within the digits of pi is the numerical representation of your birthday. The call number of your favorite book. Your phone number.

I always thought that was beautiful, how we can make sense of strings of seemingly random digits. Because in life we are constantly processing an infinite stream of thoughts for a word, pattern, or idea. And to that end, pi almost feels–rational.