I’d like to start by disclaiming that I am in the camp of people that considers τ the correct circle constant. This does not constitute one of the reasons I hate π day. It’s something that I think is the wrong choice, but it doesn’t make me hate it.
The first reason I hated π day was that it’s a brutal and arbitrary bastardization of a beautiful mathematical construct. Celebrating π on March 14 is like celebrating Labor Day on January 4 because “14” is the 1337ification of “la”, the first letters in ‘Labor Day’. Celebrating π on the 22nd day of the 7th month of some sort of year would at least be celebrating π on numbers that represent a significant rational approximation, and not just an arbitrary cutoff in a string of digits. On top of this, though, π day is conceived on the coincidence of the digits in a decimal approximation of π imposed on a calendar that’s religiously conceived; this imposes non-secularity onto math.
The second reason I hated π day was because of its role in painting nerds in the general public vision. π day has somehow become one of the ways most people are most exposed to what they would see as nerdiness. It has definitely somehow taken an exclusive pedestal as the holiday of nerds. And thus, common traditions of π day easily become what people see as the center of nerd culture. And what are these traditions? Things like memorizing digits of π and obsessing about circles in weirdly fetishistic ways. There are far cooler and more awesome things to be associated with being nerdy that could be the façade of nerdy communities to the general world, but π day puts on display the silliest possible facet.
And now, there is a new third reason: the way π day has become commercialized and appropriated. Walking around on π day is now a rapidfire march of cringe, filled with silly substitutions of π wherever the string ‘pi’ comes up in a word. See, πzza sale! The joke’s that the word ‘pizza’ starts with ‘pi’, get it? Haha, so funny! Seriously, though, these substitutions were funny the first time we saw them. And then they stopped being so. They only ever look forced now. It is so freaking old. Please stop. (I promise I’m not just bitter that I’m allergic to most pizzas and pies.)
Happy birthday to Albert Einstein, everyone.