Sunday 25 December 2022

Holiday Singalong 2022


The 12th annual Christmath parody is linked here at: "Plane Geometry".



I'm speaking only in terms of my stress levels and general availability of free time (for anything outside of teaching and parenting). Those two things keep getting worse. My serial site continues to be queued up weeks in advance with old material. I've had to shift to part time work again to stay sane. And given Ontario elected Ford for another 4 years last June (by virtue of 50+% not voting) I'll probably stay that way. Nothing's going to get better without funding, which isn't happening.

On the flip side, some very good things did happen this year, including:
-My daughter starting Kindergarten in the French Public system, and being eligible for a Covid19 vaccine. I was able to put together one single video of her this year, of her gymnastics course in Dec (plus a short clip set for Halloween).
-Another new parody I wrote and sung in class (Gayle's a-b-c-d-e-f(x) ) which I'll get online god knows when.
-Meeting some amazing Time Travel authors on Twitter in the summer (before Musk killed that website last month, by the way I'm now on Mastodon). In fact, we all published The Accidental Time Travelers Collective, a set of 12 short stories, which is currently available on Kindle. Yes, I'm officially published now with my thanks to them!

And then there's our annual math parody. I selected it late this year, Sat Dec 17th, and only finished it before midnight on the 23rd (with tweaks earlier today). "Winter Wonderland" felt like it would work for discussing the three types of "Plane Geometry", namely Euclidean (parabolic), Lobachevsky (hyperbolic) and Riemannian (elliptic). You'd have the option of singing all three, or repeating hyperbolic ("Parson Brown") twice.

Then, after getting a start on it, I discovered there's BRIDGE verses that exist between the traditionally sung ones. Namely because the 1934 original just went "Chorus1 Chorus2 Chorus2". Then in 1947 they created the "circus clown" snowman to avoid "Parson Brown" going twice, meaning "Chorus1 Chorus2a Chorus2b"... and the version by Johnny Mathis put verses in between those.

Obviously I went for maximum coverage, and included those as well, which help to bring in the history and the names of the people involved in the mathematics. The verses can be found in some other later versions (Eurythmics move them to the start, for instance), but you'd be forgiven for not knowing about them because there's some 200 different singers for "Winter Wonderland" out there.

Seriously, that's more than 2 per year, who hasn't covered this? I guess what's key is that I now have. The original lyric origins are a bit of a sad story too... the research part of this continues to be interesting.

As always, hope you enjoy it. Take care, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and here's to whatever avoids jinxing 2023.

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