Saturday, July 19, 2008

3D puzzle

When we first moved in about two years ago, this lamp was a housewarming gift from C, who bought it in Thailand on one of his frequent trips there. It's actually comprised of flat little plastic rectangles with hook-like corners and you hook all the rectangles together and they somehow magically form a sphere. It's a really clever piece of design.

Knowing what a klutz I am and how anti-DIY L is, C had warned us that it required a little assembly. But by the time he gave it to us, he quite kindly took pity on us and put it together for us, complete with a light bulb. We were still renovating then and we simply handed the assembled lamp to the electrician who installed it for us. When we needed to change the bulb, we just had to unhook a panel, reach in, screw the bulb off and put a new one in, C instructed.

That was last week. It seemed simple enough. Only when I hooked the panels back up, the beautifully perfect sphere wasn't perfect and I know I messed it up somehow and a couple of panels aren't where they're supposed to be.

L, with his statistics background, says there's a mathematical formula to it. I'll be damned if I, the maths failure in school, needed to apply maths to changing a light bulb. I just slotted slats back where they could fit and let it be, beautiful perfect sphere of a lamp be damned. The statistician, being a non-DIY guy, didn't help beyond postulating mathematical theories. He'll fix it later. One very fine day. Or until the next bulb change.

So how many statisticians does it take to change a light bulb?

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