Avoid, On the Whole, Mathematicians
I was recently shown a chapter from Graham Masterson’s book How to Drive Your Man Wild in Bed. The chapter gives suggestions on how to choose a mate, and it includes a list of professions to avoid. At the top of the list, Masterson writes:
Avoid, on the whole, mathematicians…
Of course, I think this advice should be ignored. My reaction, of course, is an ego defense, since I’m a mathy folk. But it also seems to me that a heterosexual male horror writer should not be trusted when dispensing advice about pleasing men in bed.
As it turns out, math and sex have a lot in common…
- Explicit discussions of either topic are generally not received well at social events.
- Historically, men have had control, but recent efforts have tried to get women more involved.
- People engage prominently in both activities on college campuses.
- Most people wish they knew more about both subjects.
- Both activities are typically practiced indoors.
- Both involve long and hard problems and can produce interesting topology and geometry.
- Both merit undivided attention, but mathematicians are prone to thinking about one while doing the other.
- Saint Augustine was hostile to both.
- Alan Turing took an unusual approach to both.
- Both typically begin with a lot of hard work and end with a great but brief reward.
- Professionals are viewed with suspicion, and most of them are underpaid.