Another Tri-Centennial March Mathness Magazine


Happy March! Happy Third Month of the Gregorian Calendar!

Being it’s the third month, here’s a salute to the very fine and lovely number three.

Hurray for The Three!

Hurray for the Triad!

The Triangle!

The Holy Trinity!

The Three Graces!

There’s definitely something about the three. It seems that everybody loves the three. Three is the charm.

OK. Let’s get spiritual:

The Two (the number two) splits unity (the One) and creates our world of opposites: life and death, present and absent, up and down, back and forth, figure/ground, yin and yang, etc. etc.

The vesica picsis – the intersection of the two circles – generates the equilateral triangle. The three is created by the intersection of the two. Connect the points of intersection: and voila, an equilateral triangle! We were introduced to the triangle in geometry class. Remember? Congruent triangles, similar triangles, isoscoles triangles, and right triangles? The triangle is the cornerstone of trigonometry – and the main character in Euclid’s plane geometry – which has provided scientists and the rest of us with a template for logic – a system where you need to prove things before you think they’re true – a condition which is apparently hard to swallow for people who are too lazy to bother thinking.

Once again, hurray for the triangle! Hurray for its strength of structure! Paste two of those sturdy equilateral triangles together and you get a hexagon. And then, if you happen to be a bee, well, you’ll have a place to store your honey. More about the hexagon in another post. Back to the three. And now we’re gonna get a bit nostalgic, nay sentimental.

We grow up listening to stories about the Three: The Three Bears, The Three Little Pigs. Three wishes! As we grow we encounter the Three Musketeers, Three Coins in the Fountain, Three Days of the Condor, Three Dog Night, the Three Stooges, and the Tri-State area. In basketball there’s Phil Jackson’s triangle offense and the Triple Double (which sounds like an oxymoron, however). Baseball has the triple play (it’s a treat to see one, and I did see one live at Dodger Stadium). Baseball has three bases to touch or tag (the fourth is called Home). You get three strikes (and you’re out!). Hey, baseball season is fast upon us. It’s spring season already! It’s spring, the time of rebirth, the time to plant seeds, a time of renewal and new beginnings.

Here’s a song in 3/4 time. Three beats to a measure! Sing along! Admittedly, I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry is one of Hank Williams’ saddest ones. But one his most beautiful ones too. And one plus two is three, so I’m out of here.

Moron March in another post. I mean more on March in another post. Anyhoo, Happy March and Three Cheers!

9 thoughts on “Another Tri-Centennial March Mathness Magazine

  1. Being the third month I can trot out my usual menage a trois comment. It’s a relief to get that one ou of the way for another year.

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