Archive for February 28, 2014

If I Had a Million Dollars…

The Daily Prompt at the Daily Post @ WordPress for December 28 gave the following hypothetical situation:

You’ve just won $1 billion dollars in the local lottery. You do not have to pay tax on your winnings. How will you spend the money?

I would have written about this sooner, but I’ve been too busy (a) fantasizing about how I’d spend that kind of money, (b) sending emails to the Daily Post telling them that they needn’t be so greedy; a million dollars would be plenty, and (c) sending more emails to the Daily Post telling them that the lottery is a tax on the mathematically challenged, that it’s insane to think that such a lottery would have no tax implications, that no lottery has ever had a billion-dollar prize, and that promulgating the possibility of winning such an unlikely sum only gives hope to those who should be putting their money in a savings account instead.

But I digress.

Part of me thinks I’d heed the advice of the Barenaked Ladies…

If I had a million dollars
I’d buy you some art
A Picasso or a Garfunkel

But I’m not sure that a million dollars would be enough to afford a painting by the world’s greatest cubist or to purchase the poet who rode Paul Simon’s coattails to musical fame, so instead I’d commission a mathematical sculpture by Zach Abel. Or maybe I’d just buy binder clips and construct some sculptures myself — at $3.68 per dozen, I could afford enough binder clips to make 746,268 copies of Stressful:

Part of me thinks I’d just withdraw the money in $1 bills from the bank. But how would I get it home? Do you have any idea how much that would weigh? Take some time to figure it out… the result will surprise you. The FAQ at the Bureau of Printing and Engraving might be helpful, as might this picture of a million dollars, although it’s $100 bills, not singles:

Million Dollars

And here’s a great problem about $1,000,000, which I learned from Martin Gardner:

On January 1, I deposited $x in a bank account. On January 2, I deposited $y in the same account. Every day thereafter, I deposited an amount equal to the sum of the previous two days’ deposits. On January 20, I deposited exactly $1,000,000. How much did I deposit on January 1?

February 28, 2014 at 10:50 pm Leave a comment

About MJ4MF

The Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks blog is an online extension to the book Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks. The blog contains jokes submitted by readers, new jokes discovered by the author, details about speaking appearances and workshops, and other random bits of information that might be interesting to the strange folks who like math jokes.

MJ4MF (offline version)

Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks is available from Amazon, Borders, Barnes & Noble, NCTM, Robert D. Reed Publishers, and other purveyors of exceptional literature.

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February 2014

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