Pythagoras sketch on Radio 4

We emerge from our slumbers briefly to let you know about a cameo appearance of mathematics in a Radio 4 comedy sketch programme. Episode 2 of John Finnemore’s Souvenir Programme on Thursday 20 September featured a scene in which Pythagoras and his agent discuss the tricky business of releasing his next theorem…  The reason it gets a tip of the hat on this blog is that not only does the sketch capture some of the frustration of being a mathematician in a world that doesn’t understand mathematics, but the writer had the decency to quote a proper theorem rather than making up some rubbish. (The theorem in question is a famous piece of projective geometry with the splendid name of Pascal’s Mystic Hexagram.)

The episode is available on the BBC iPlayer until 27 September. If you want to skip the non-mathsy stuff, the Pythagoras sketch starts about 14 minutes and 40 seconds in. Enjoy.

(DP)

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