Morning Mathematical Monsters & Maniacs!
(Today’s post is sponsored by the letter “M”)
Over the past 600+ episodes, The Simpsons has taken us on an amazing mathematical journey involving fractions, probability, Fermat’s last theorem, and hundreds of other aspects from the wonderful world off mathematics.
And what better way to start your week, then by discussing math Monday morning?
This week we go back to an episode of The Simpsons from 20 years ago and look at the Imperial Units for lengths.
In Brother’s Little Helper (Season 11, Episode 02), while Bart is diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder and being treated with Focusyn, Homer gets a personal digital assistant and ask the system:
Homer [to Lenny and Carl]: I tell you, the kid’s a wonder. He organized all the lawsuits against me into one class action.
Lenny: That’s gotta save all kinds of travel time.
Homer: You know it. Plus, he gave me this appointment dealy. It’s got my whole week in there.
Carl: [whistles] Sweet.
Homer: Ah, this thing will do anything. Watch, I’ll ask it how many leagues in a furlong. No, wait, I’ll make it say, “Whassamatta, you?” in Turkish. And look at this: [pulls out a grater from the side of the organizer] a cheese grater!
Lenny: Man, technology’s amazing.
Carl: A guy can do great things with a gadget like that.
So let’s look at how many leagues in a furlong.
The Weights and Measures Act of 1824 was the first act for ascertaining and establishing uniformity of weights and measures and is considered the origin of Imperial Units.
The Weights and Measures Act of 1824 established 8 units of length – thou, inch, foot, yard, chain, furlong, mile, and league.
From the info above, we can answer Homer’s question how many leagues in a furlong. The correct answer is 1/24th of a league is in a furlong.
Now that we’ve completed a look at imperial units for length, why not show your love for math and factorials with your own Math Mayhem shirt or hoodie.
If you love math or enjoy reading these posts, don’t forget to stop by the Addicts Shop and check out all the paraphernalia, including the Math Mayhem shirts and hoodies.
Were you familiar with furlongs and leagues? What’s your favourite unit of length? Do you recall the episode from 20 years ago? Did you recall it features a cameo by Mark McGwire? Sound off in the comments below. You know we love hearing from you.