Similar to how we tend
to either identify with Christina or Britney or with cake or pie, we tend to
think of ourselves as either a math person or an English person.

This is hard for me
because I consider both “Genie in a Bottle” and “Hit Me Baby One More Time” to
be my jams, and if I were presented with a slice of flourless chocolate cake
and rhubarb pie, I would shove them both in my mouth with equal gusto.

And the truth is
that I enjoy calculating and conjugating.

I am thinking about
this today because it’s National Pi Day (3/14), and just because I would be considered
more of an English person, I don’t want to be left out of any Pi Day festivities.

Plus, I don’t think
math and English are really as opposite as people think.

English is largely
considered to be the wilder of the two while math is considered
the more rational. To put it in Sweet Valley High terms, Jessica
would be English and Elizabeth would be math. And, of course, there are aspects
of English that are wild and creative, but it can also be quite mathematical. Writing
essays actually reminds me of the proofs I used to have to do in geometry: in
order to successfully prove the thesis, one must logically present the
supporting points. Also, I remember the phrase “if and only if” from math, and
I tell my students that we use a comma before *and *“if and only if” the *and*
joins two independent clauses:

Comma: To celebrate
Pi Day, I want to measure a circle’s diameter and circumference**,**** and** I also want to divide the circumference by
the diameter.

No comma: To celebrate
Pi Day, I want to measure a circle’s diameter and circumference** and** divide the circumference by the
diameter.

And to top it off, math isn't always a stick in the mud.
I know for a fact that Pi is totally irrational!

Do you consider
yourself a math person or an English person? Or a little bit of both
(manglish?)?