Revel in the basic math errors of others!
Pointing out bad math feels quite different than pointing out bad grammar/spelling/punctuation, even though both are firmly in the same pedantic family. Making a note of a grammar mistake comes off much more smug, much more condescending. Making a note of a basic math mistake somehow seems to skirt those implications. At least that was what I was telling myself over and over as I researched and wrote this list.
Here are 11 pictures of egregiously bad math mistakes in the real world…
1 | Partners in education
The partnership had been going for 15 years in 2007, not 25. But I don’t blame them for the mistake — Comic Sans makes everyone instantly dumber.
2 | #CougarWives
If one screenshot could ever sum up The Learning Channel’s transition into TLC: Parade of Fools, this is it. A show called Cougar Wives AND a basic subtraction error, all in one sad package.
3 | Gold Hill
Well, their addition is solid. Their methodology does bring up some questions.
4 | So… which is it?
Two Florida papers, nearly identical, by the same publisher to serve two different communities, somehow come out with a nine-percent discrepancy on a study. I looked it up — which wasn’t super easy, since “FATTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!” studies come out constantly — and I believe The Stuart News got it right. Giving them a victory in this Right Twix-Left Twixian battle with the St. Lucie News Tribune.
5 | Gas or Milk?
I guess 43 percent of people think “What” should be the cheapest of all?
6 | McNugget role call
Look, I’m ALL about things going up to 11 instead of 10. But when the box shows 11 and the package only contains 10, I think the feeling of being “nuggetized” is far more disappointing than anticipated.
7 | Swagger ain’t cheap. (Is Swagger cheap?)
Target seems to be aiming to take advantage of people who want their gel douche in a mistakenly labeled “Save with Two at Once” pack. Maybe it’s $1.03 worth of cardboard packaging?
8 | Check the operating budget
Looks like the person making the sign glanced at the pie chart and got a little confused. Maybe take a little more out of the budget for a new sign guy? Everyone’s already being mislead about where the money is going anyway.
9 | Independent Scotland
The actual numbers, before getting CNN-ized, were 52 percent no, 48 percent yes. Which, based on other recent U.K. exit votes, means Scotland will be as good as gone if this ever goes to a vote.
10 | To infinity and…
Badass knuckle tattoos of a catchphrase from a kid’s movie featuring the very confused and incorrect usage of the less than sign. This should be one of those things math teachers whip out when kids ask, “When are we ever going to need this in the real world?”
11 | So close!
The whole “math equations as decorations” motif isn’t new. I’m just not sure HP should’ve given themselves that A+ with that glaring error in their quadratic formula. Perhaps they should’ve given themselves — fittingly — a C.