Archive for October 30th, 2008

Mathematical Halloween Costumes

October 30, 2008

Halloween is just a day away, and (unless you’re under the age of 15) you probably haven’t given much thought to what you might wear as a costume.

What is a mathematician to do?

I’ve been brainstorming for ideas for mathematically-themed Halloween costumes [sadly, the “storm” has been more of a light mist at best], but here are a few thoughts:

  • The Mod SquadDress up as your favorite character from the iconic 60’s television series, featuring three groovy cats fighting crime on the streets of LA.  [Short shameful confession:  the inspiration for this Halloween costume post was seeing Batman’s implication that we should teach science using rap, wondering what the sixties version of that might have been, and then remembering that I myself had dressed up as Pete Cochran of the Mod Squad on the day of my number theory final as an undergrad.  At the time I was puzzled that no one commented on the outfit, but then again, it was California, and many far stranger things happened on the streets and on campus to as little notice as possible.]
  • Or you could go political, choosing from a selection of “trig” puns:
    • Draw the first page of Trig Palin’s passport on a piece of cardboard and hang it around your neck. Voila! You’re a Trig Identity!
    • Dress up like a generic child. When asked, say you’re Sarah Palin’s youngest child’s doppelgänger. Yes, that’s right, a Trig Substitution.
    • sorry, uh, this isn’t a costume, but did you hear that if the McCain-Palin ticket wins the election, the Palin kids will be going to DC public schools? Yeah, that’s right. In a few years, it will lead to trig integration.  (“Thank you, thank you, I’m here all week… try the veal…”)
  • One could always dress up as your favorite mathematician.  (A trip to the costume store for powdered wigs if you’re thinking 17th C, or for ZZ-Top costumes if you’re thinking 19th C….)

So, what are you dressing up as for Halloween?