Math Jokes, Yo! Let It Snow…
If you live near northern Virginia, then you’re stuck inside on a snowy day. If you’re bored and need something to do, you could attempt to solve the snowplow problem from R. P. Agnew’s Differential Equations (McGraw-Hill, New York, 1942).
One day it started snowing at a heavy and steady rate. A snowplow started out at noon, going 2 miles the first hour and 1 mile the second hour. What time did it start snowing?
If you can’t find the solution easily (or if you think that the problem is unsolvable), don’t fret. This problem has befuddled students for 71 years.
If you’re not a masochist, though, then you may just like some math jokes for a snowy day.
Math Teacher: We’re going to have an exam tomorrow, rain or shine.
Student: Great! It’s snowing.
What math do Snowy Owls study?
Or perhaps you enjoy jokes with more elaborate set-ups…
An elder in a Native American tribe is asked, “Will it be cold this winter?” Not wanting to appear ignorant, he tells them, “Yes, it will be cold this winter. I suggest you start collecting firewood to be prepared.” The tribe disperses immediately to start collecting wood. Meanwhile, the elder heads to a phone and calls the National Weather Service. He asks the person who answers, “Will it be cold this winter?”
The agent at NWS responds, “Yes, our early data indicates that it will be a cold winter.”
The elder returns to the tribe and tells them, “Keep collecting wood! A cold winter is on the way!” Just to be sure, the next day he calls NWS, and again he asks, “Will it be cold this winter?”
The agent responds, “Our data now suggests that the winter will be very cold.”
The elder informs the tribe, “It will be a very cold winter! More wood!”
Wanting to be certain that he is sharing correct information, he calls NWS again the following day. “Are you absolutely certain that it will be very cold this winter?”
“Yes!” says the NWS agent. “The Native Americans are collecting firewood at an unprecedented rate!”