Prom Story

Math can be a surprisingly useful tool for dating, like lipstick, fragrance or a good haircut. For the prom, math helped me calculate the exact height of the heels I could wear without towering over my date. My fragile teenage confidence had distorted my self-image into a caricature of a tall, awkward girl with “monstrous” sized feet. The only pair of elegant high-heel shoes I'd found, bought especially for prom, lifted me above every guy and girl in my grade. Sifting through our teacher’s class records, I found out my date’s height, which was humiliatingly close to mine. I had to either sacrifice the shoes or calculate how far away I needed to stand from my partner so he wouldn't perceive me as a T-rex. I made a sketch that demonstrated that our apparent height difference would be inversely proportional to the distance between us. This ruled out any dancing. Flats were the final choice, but in reward, my long prom night ended with memorable romantic midnight kayaking.

More math adventures in dating: The Math of Dating - Mark Yourself Excelled.


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