March is quite a celebratory month with a holiday for just about everybody tucked in there. There's Fat Tuesday and Ash Wednesday, Purim and St. Patrick's Day, Earth Day and the Spring Equinox. Apparently, however, the mathematicians were feeling a little underrepresented, and have thus declared March 14th to be Pi Day. Get it?
For those who don't recall much from high school geometry class, in other words most of us, pi is the letter from the Greek alphabet that represents the mathematical relationship between the diameter and circumference of a circle. That number extends on indefinitely, but it is best known for its first three digits, 3.14, and so it clearly makes sense that March 14th, or 3/14, would be deemed Pi Day.
What does one do on Pi Day, you might ask? Well surely it would not have gained the renown it has today if it were a holiday that involved doing any type of math, but a holiday that stands as an excuse to eat pie, well now there's something to celebrate.
Created by physicist Larry Shaw in 1989, and officially designated a holiday by congress in 2009, Pi Day likely gets its greatest recognition at the Exploratorium in San Francisco where pi, as well as pie, related activities abound. There’s probably a pi squared joke in there somewhere, but I digress.
For now, schools and government offices remain open on March 14th, and I'm fairly certain that there will be no parades marching down Main Street anytime soon, but what Pi Day lacks in notoriety, it surely makes up for in deliciousness. Throw some pizza pies into the mix, and Pi Day might soon become a holiday that elicits the same rationalized, excessive indulgence as Easter and Christmas, and by American standards, that's what distinguishes the real holidays from the poseurs.
In the meantime, I'm thinking that a double-crusted, cinnamon apple a la mode is in my near future.