Blog Post #9: Beauty

Dear Readers,

In Blog Post #7, I left you with a super-sizzling summer brainteaser to enjoy tussling with during the month of July, as I didn’t expect to be writing more here before August. However, after seeing a very interesting new film entitled “2:22” at the cinema last night, and then waking up this morning with a fresh, fun “discovery” in my mind, I decided to share it quickly. Please do have fun with it, too!


Haley: Shall we halve your birthday cake to have half each, Tony?

Tony: Well…OK, but…I’d still like to have two pieces too!


The famous Italian scientist, philosopher and mathematician Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) once said, “Mathematics is the language with which God created the Universe.” To my mind, everything that God created–including Mathematics–is beautiful, and was meant to be used for good.

I have no doubt that many variations and extensions are possible with the following fun Math ideas, but today I’ll stick to using four-digit numbers like 2886 or 3774, for example. The two middle digits should be equal, and the sum of the two outer digits should equal either of the middle digits.

As I enjoyed the film “2:22” last night, I invite you today to choose your own special four-digit number (as described in bold letters above) and divide your four-digit number by 2.22.

If your answer is not a decimal, but rather a whole number ending in 00 or 50 on the right, then our fun Math has worked perfectly, and is ready for you to try out on some friends, if you wish.

Before I sign off for now, I’d like to mention that I really liked the music in “2:22”, and you can (still for now at least) enjoy listening to a lovely piece by clicking on the following hyperlinked photo.

Click on the photo to listen to a beautiful song.

“Our Lord does not look so much at the greatness of our actions, nor even at their difficulty, but at the love with which we do them”–St. Thérèse of Lisieux.

Author: Paul A. Motwani

My name is Paul Motwani, but my colleagues, my students and their parents mostly call me "Mr. Mo"! My middle initial, A, stands for Anthony, because I was born on the official feast day of St. Anthony of Padua, the patron saint of miracles and of lost souls. I love teaching Mathematics and Chess, and giving fun-packed talks and shows in schools and clubs. The popular ingredients of Math, Chess, Mystery and Magic are my "Fantastic Four", and I give prizes too! I am an International Chess Grandmaster, and (loooooong ago!) I was the World Under-17 Champion. I am the author of five published chess books and hundreds of newspaper articles. I live with my wonderful wife and son in Belgium. I also love music, movies and puzzles. I blog at My e-mail address is You can find me on Facebook, too.

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