Christopher Slattery contributed this post in honor of the upcoming Pi Day.
Monday, March 14 is the 116th anniversary of the ratification of the Gold Standard Act for the United States (I know, take the kids out of school and teach them the necessities of bullion and fixed quantities on Monday!), but also the day that we celebrate and remind ourselves that geometry is complicated, by means of Pi Day.
Now, as many of you are probably aware, we’ve already celebrated a similarly-title National Pie Day on January 23, which begs the questions: “What’s the difference?” and “Why do I care?” and “Is 2016’s leap day responsible for the loss of an “e” between Pie Day and Pi Day?” Simply put, the answers are “Plenty!” and “Because I said so!” and “Yes!”
To state it more completely, Pi Day is the celebration of π, a Greek letter representing a circle’s circumference divided by its diameter. Essentially, pi is the stand-in for a number that never ends, but is most commonly known as 3.14, hence the significance of the third month (March) and the fourteenth day (14).
But what does this mean for citizens and visitors of Lansing? How can we celebrate such a Greek-based holiday when we are at least—carry the one, multiply for the tangential proof…—18 miles away from Greece? (To be fair, math was never my strong suit; my teachers graded on a curve. I Googled most of this.)
So what do we care? As with most major holidays celebrated in this country, we celebrate by expanding our own personal circumferences. The world is ripe with a surprising amount of round-shaped foods, not the least of which is cake. We can argue all day about which baked good is superior—pie or cake—but it ignores the larger point. Regardless of whether you eat pie on Pie Day in January or eat cake on Pi Day in March or eat smiley face fries on Smiley Face Fry Day in August (which, as of yet, is not real, but I hope Governor Snyder drafts legislation soon), it’s important to acknowledge the shape that literally makes the world go ’round: the ellipse. Wait, I’m off track…
So gather a close circle of friends (or anyone within a three-block radius) and enjoy any food you find appropriate: hamburgers, bagels, M&Ms, quiches, pancakes, or—to round this whole list out—pepperoni pizza, which is basically an Inception version of pi—a Piception. Eat a paper plate, a frisbee, a manhole cover. The possibilities are as endless as the number pi itself.
I do have one exception, and it brings up 360-degrees to the beginning of this blog: those little chocolates dressed up like gold coins. Save those. Even though the gold standard was dropped in 1933, who knows when we’ll go back.
Where do you find round thingies and pi(e)s in Greater Lansing? Here are some of Lori in Lansing’s suggestions:
Bubble Island – those bubbles in the tea
Bake N’ Cakes – those cakes
Chapelure Fine Pastry and Espresso – those macarons
Grand Traverse Pie Company – those PIES
Roma Bakery – those fruit tarts
Sugar Shack – those cupcakes
Sweetie-licious Bakery Cafe – those PIES
Pizza House – those pizza pies
DeLuca’s Restaurant – those pizza pies
The Cosmos – those pizza pies
Dominos – those pizza pies
Glazed & Confused – those donuts
So get out in Greater Lansing and celebrate Pi Day!