July 22, 2012 marked the first ever electoral defeat for Purno Agitok Sangma , the 5′ something upstart who aspired to be a giant-killer . The loser’s painfully-cross-legged posture ( vide his pic at Sabarmati trying to look like Bapu on his Charkha ) was sufficient ground to disqualify him from Presidential candidature , given his ample girth & inadequate height ( BJP platform notwithstanding !! ) . Besides , he does not bear as endearing a name as Poltu does . And , most intriguingly , his polled votes to the total electoral college bore a ratio of 3.14 something : cross-voting in Karnataka & a near-total thumbs-down from his home county in the North East ensured that !! No wonder the upstart had to eat the proverbial Humble Pie.
Talking about intriguing ratios , the day also marked Global Pi- Day ( 22/7=3.14 something ) : global barring the US of A , where they drive on the wrong side ( right ! ) & have their calendar all mixed up ( Month / Day instead of Day / Month ) & therefore celebrate the most intriguing constant in Mathematics on 14th March ( 3.14 ) , reportedly by baking , throwing , & eating of pies after their area & circumference have been calculated .
Most of us , if not all , know the mathematical significance of Pi in determining the area of a circle @ Pir2 , Pi being the ratio of circumference of a circle to its diameter. As a corollary , Pi also helps determine the volume of a sphere. In field events at the forthcoming London Olympics , the start- point for each runner must be carefully marked on the track through a Pi -based calculation to ensure that each runner covers the same distance per lap. And so the list goes on ( always a helpful way to end a sentance when one knows not any more & yet knows that there is in fact plenty more !! )
What has defied any rational explanation through centuries is the frequent occurance of the irrationally inexact value of Pi in some of Mother Nature’s bounty. An example is in the meandering distance covered by many a leading river from point A to point B mostly approximating 3.14 times the staright-line distance between points A & B.
An addition to the ever growing mystique of Pi could be the omen for a Presidential candidate without an endearing name such as Poltu, that if the poll results are scheduled to coincide with World Pi-day namely 22/7 ( = 3.14 something ) , chances are he will poll no more than 31.4 % votes , & end up with a Pied face ( = variegated coll. for red -faced ) . Stretching it a bit ( blogger’s prerogative when out of interesting ideas !! ) , Sangma adds up to 55 if you assign a numeric to each alphabet , against Poltu Mukherjee’s healthy 84+86 = 170 : & there you have it : a ratio approximating the mystical 3.14 .
A bit unfair , you might think , to corelate a Surname on the one hand , to , a Nick-Surname aggregate on the other. But then, one might argue with vehemence that ( a ) no one stopped the loser from coming- up with an equally if not a more endearing childhood name , in the absence of which , zero got assigned by default !! , & ( b ) whoever said the Presidential poll was a fair contest in the first place !!
Written with utmost respect for the Constitutional office of the President of India , though not necessarily in equal measure to the incumbent , the imminent , & the loser- aspirant .
Cheers & a Happy Pi-day