Monday, November 21, 2016

Happy Birthday

So, Ok.  According to a reliable source (some guy's blog post from 2010), the odds of two people in a group having the same birthdate reach 100% when the group size reaches 366 people.  There is a big fancy math equation which remarkably ends up achieving the same result as the equation:

x = "Days of the [non-leap] Year" + 1

but I am assured that is just a strange mathematical coincidence [by the very people who like math to be complex and mystical].

I would envision 366 to be low because I'm sure that's based on a mathematical presumption of an equal distribution.  If you've ever been in a hospital maternity ward [as an adult] you know that there is no such thing as a true Gaussian curve when it comes to babies being born.  They are all born when the doctors are at home, or playing golf or on a Saturday at two in the morning. 

So, let's just round it up because math ain't the point of where I'm going.  Let's say, just for conversation sake, its 500 people.  That means, if you know 500 people or you pass them in the course of your day or if you add up your facebook friends and people you see when going about your day, just about anyone can get somewhere close to 500.  I work for a company of 2,500 people, so there - boom.  I'm there.  Just for conversation sake, let's assume that 500 is not a stretch for you.

Ergo, if you know 500 people, there is like a 100% chance that today is someone you know's birthday.   Which means that (unless there is a lot of overlap in your 500 person's inventory), it is also probably the birthday of someone you know indirectly, one-step removed.

I don't want to blow your mind, but if you take that out a few more steps, you get to - and I'm rounding it up here - a shit load of people.

Therefore, it is safe to say that we have the birthday thing all wrong.  You see, its not really unusual for it to be someone you know's birthday.  What's unusual is you KNOWING its their birthday.

Therefore, you should CYA and just wish the universe Happy Birthday every morning when you wake up, because if you don't, you're skipping someone.  And we all know how it feels to be skipped on your birthday.

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