More Than 3.14 Pi Day Memes, Jokes, Puns That Are Funnier Than Math Class

Time is a flat circle, Matthew McConaughey tells us, neglecting to explain how then we could measure time's circumference to derive its diameter, using pi. (Maybe it's best not to take the sentiment too literally.) But while we may not be able to interpret the past and future using the mathematical mainstay, we can say for sure that Pi Day is upon us once more: March 16, which in U.S. date format notation, can be written out as 3.16, a loose approximation of the mathematical constant.

Pi, or the Greek letter π in mathematical notation (from the word perimetros, or circumference), describes the ratio between a circle's circumference (its length around) and diameter (its length across). It is derived simply, by dividing the circumference of a circle by its diameter, or π = C/d, but the result is a never-ending "irrational" number: 3.14159265. Check out this visual demonstration of how pi works, using pizza:

With Pi Day just around the corner, let’s remember what Pi is all about.

After washing your hands thoroughly, cut the crust off a pizza pie and lay it across four others. You’ll see that the crust spans a little more than 3 pies. That’s Pi ≈ 3.14.

But that’s not all! (Cont’d)

— Alex Kontorovich (@AlexKontorovich) March 6, 2020

While a single number may not seem like much cause for celebration, let alone its own "Pi Day," pi has been a crucial part of mathematics and numerous other fields since ancient times, with Babylonian tablets and Chinese mathematical texts affirming its use, thousands of years ago. A foundational number in geometry, pi is employed in architecture, physics and cartography, popping up throughout the natural world as well.

Celebrate Pi Day, this March 14, with baked goods. Photo by Suzanne Cordeiro/Corbis via Getty Images

Pi Day itself was first celebrated in 1988, organized by physicist Larry Shaw of the San Francisco science museum, the Exploratorium. Celebrants walked around in circles and ate—what else—pies. Pi Day celebrations went mainstream in the internet era, consecrated by a National Pi Day resolution passed by Congress in 2009 and its own Google Doodle the year after. Since then, the holiday has become a staple day for online memes, polite chuckle jokes and wretched puns. Here are some of our favorite.

First, some Pi Day "jokes":

  • How far can you recite pie? Cherry, Apple, Blueberry... I'm sorry.
  • What do you get when you cut a pumpkin across its diameter? Pumpkin pi.
  • Why do people get excited about Pi Day? I don't know, it's completely irrational. I'm so sorry.
  • What do you call Tom Selleck when he's solving math problems? Magnum Pi.
  • What do you call a snake that's 3.14 feet long? A pithon. Okay, that's one a little funny maybe.

Then we have the puns:

  • 3.14 percent of sailors are Pi rates. Sigh.
  • The roundest knight of the Round Table was Sir Circumference. He ate too much pi. (I'm done apologizing, Excalibur is a good movie.)
  • Believe it or not, these are the best of what's out there!

Thankfully we've invented new ways of being funny since Pi Day first began in the 1980s, most importantly Vine, RIP. But there's also memes. Oh Pythagoras, are there a lot of Pi Day memes and well-wishes.

Nailed it.

— dr. jeff (@nerdfaced) January 11, 2013

Happy Pi Day!

— Calvin and Hobbes (@Calvinn_Hobbes) March 14, 2019

i remember on pi day in 3rd grade when the teacher used to turn off the lights and make us line up to get pinched until we cried. lol them days.

— nope (@LilNasX) March 14, 2019

You know I had to do it to em on pi day

— Wavy (@WavyOnTwitch) March 14, 2019

In honor of National Pi Day, here are the milepost 314s we can think of in the state highway system. Did we miss any? #PiDay #PiDay2019 #Pi #highway #milepost

— Arizona DOT (@ArizonaDOT) March 14, 2019

Happy (Pizza) Pi Day! 🍕

— Seattle Sounders FC (@SoundersFC) March 14, 2019

Happy Pi day from room 1149! #WeAreMaumee

— Tim Wilhelm (@twilhelmGMS) March 14, 2019

There's a lot more where that came from! Check out our Pi Day memes and jokes from 2019 and 2018 while you're scarfing whatever dessert you want (why should Pi Day be all about pies, other than the obvious reason?).