It is now practically impossible to shop without a PhD in maths.Let me clarify this, you don't actually need a postgraduate qualification to get the £1 into the shopping trolley, release it and fill it with shopping. No a GCSE should be fine for that.
But if you want to make the most of all the offers, you need to do quick and, I would argue, complex calculations if the £ in your pocket is going to get you your 20 shillings' worth.
Let's take toilet rolls for example. The eggheads do the sums for you, working out how much per sheet, which in itself is a bit of an eyeopener, I'd never put a price on my toilet habits up until now. But what if they are on special offer, with free rolls, or BOGOFs? (buy one, get one free..) And what if they have the double-length rolls and give you two free?
Then there's the green variable. Your bog roll might be cheaper, but what about use of recycled paper and packaging?
I would say my maths is a little rusty, but that would imply it has, at some point in time, been put to use. Don't get me wrong, I can do sums, I may be the last woman on earth to use long division and long multiplication, but it works. It's just that I am the founder and sole proponent of Organic Maths, a world where 1 x 0 = 1. Oh the fun I have with that. Almost as much fun as the maths lessons where I managed to do no maths at all, though I was very good at putting the wastebin over the door so it fell on the maths teacher when he came in (it didn't), or a drawing pin on his chair for him to sit on (he didn't do that either) or – and I'm not proud of this – offering him laxative chocolate, which, thanks to the alert from some internal antenna, he turned down.Glad I didn't have that on my conscience. All I can say to Mr W, wherever you are, sorry, maths just wasn't my thing, but I think you guessed that.
So using my Organic Maths, I've come up with a formula, where:
tr is toilet roll and
b is bargain.
p is packaging and
p is purchase (mmmm, I may have hit a snag here)
If tr=8+4 and trx2=b then p=p
So if there are four free toilet rolls in an eight pack and the double-sized rolls are a bargain, then, well, you just buy whichever pack is the prettiest. Sorted.
Today's lovely thing
The cat pursued by a paper bag he'd got caught around his head. Priceless.