Math Goes Trick Or Treating Yet Again

Another year, another night of dressing in costumes on a quest for candy and/or debauchery. In previous years, I’ve tried to encourage mathematically influenced Halloween costumes (see here and here), and so if for no other reason than the sake of consistency, this year will be no different. Here are some new ideas for 2010:

1. The Count

This costume idea was suggested to me in the comments section of last year’s list. Known and loved by children and adults alike, this costume would give the wearer ample opportunity to teach children about the wonders of math. If you’re one of those people who give out pennies or toothbrushes, though, I would caution you against this costume decision, since the combination of a lack of candy and an insistence on discussing mathematics may dramatically increase the likelihood of you being at the receiving end of a “trick.”

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Math Gets Around: Breakfast

I admire the food blog Serious Eats because, as we’ve seen before, it’s not afraid to get a little mathematical. This month they have upped the ante with a post on the delicious object now known as the Mobius strip bagel.

Named for the classical geometric object of the same name, the Mobius strip bagel (and its cousin, the Mobius strip donut) give an elegant mathematical spin on ordinary edibles. In addition to the aesthetic value, the Mobius strip bagel also has the advantage of added surface area, meaning that one can pile on even more cream cheese before stuffing one’s face.

Mathematician George Hart has step-by-step instructions for the transformation from torus to Mobius strip here. I have yet to try this technique myself, but I can think of no better way to celebrate the holidays than by transforming breakfast food into mathematically themed breakfast food. . . . → Read More: Math Gets Around: Breakfast