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10 Pies for Pi Day

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March 14th, often written as 3-14, is Pi Day! It's a day set aside to pay homage to the ratio of a circle to its diameter. The traditional way to celebrate is to eat a pie. Or bake one. Here are some wonderful Pi Day pies you might try this year.

1. Amazing One Hundred Digit Pie

ScienceBlogs, together with Serious Eats, held a Pi Day Bake-Off to celebrate Pi Day in 2010. Shown at the top is Claudette's amazing One-Hundred-Digit pie made with cherries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, and strawberries. Sure, it's not round, but remember, pie are square!

2. The Apple Pi


Serious Eats also held a Pi(e) Day Baking Challenge in conjunction with with Instructables in 2012. The winner was the apple Pi by Shannon. She cut the apples into number shapes with cookie cutters, and also cut the pie crust into numbers to decorate the top. And she posted the directions for doing so.  

3. Mini Pi Pies


Instructables user dlgauthier made Mini Pi PIes, so that everyone at her office Pi Day lunch could have a whole pie. The pi symbol provided enough crust on the top of each.

4. Pi-Shaped Pie


Jessie Oleson of Cakespy created a recipe for Pi-Shaped Pie to celebrate Pi Day in 2011. This one is more of a big turnover, filled with chocolate and peanut butter. The instructions are at Serious Eats.

5. To 3.14 or not to pie


Instructables member hertzgamma took the idea of a pi-symbol-shaped pipe to the next level with a pie called "To 3.14 or not to pie." This one has cherry filling, but you can use any fruit filling. The lattice strips on top are engraved with even more numbers. She used a soldering iron for that part. If you feel up to this project, all the steps are laid out at Instructables.

6. Fried Pi Pies


Maybe you prefer your pies fried. If that doesn't sound yummy to you, you probably haven't tried a real Southern homemade fried pie! Instructables member starshipminivan made Fried Pi Pies for Pi Day 2010. This one has a chocolate filling, but you can put your favorite flavor inside.

7. Easy as Apple Pie


This creative pie dates back to 2004, from Flickr user Jhayne, and has become a classic. The crust is shaped like a book (a math text, no doubt), and the first 24 digits of pi are carved out of the cover, letting us peek at the apples inside.

8. Pies Are Round? No, Pi(es) Are Squared!


What you see here are 101 mini pies, adorned with one digit each, arranged in sequence showing pi to 100 decimal points. But look closer: even in that exact arrangement, there is a pi symbol visible among them. Instructables member brooklynbrownie plotted them all out before she began baking. The recipe has directions for three different fillings: caramelized mango, strawberry/raspberry chai, and blueberry.

9. Cookie Pi Crust


A cookie for Pi Day? That seems so wrong, but it's okay, because this cookie is made from pie crust! Instructables member craftknowitall tells how her mother made crisp cookies out of leftover pie crust and adapted the recipe by shaping that crust into a pi symbol. The topping is cinnamon sugar.

10. Pizza Pi


You can make things a whole lot easier on yourself by rearranging the pepperonis on a pizza (before baking) instead of putting a pie together, like this pizza from Flickr user Ludie Cochrane. Or better yet, have the pizza pi for dinner and your pi pie for dessert!

Bonus: Pi Is (still) Wrong

Mathemusician Vi Hart tried to make pi as easy as pie by making a pie. She ended up making two pies, because it's not that simple. Hart prefers tau to pi, which is fine, as I prefer blackberry pie to peach pie.

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Live Smarter
Why the Best Time to Book Your Thanksgiving Travel Is Right Now
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You're never going to get a true steal on holiday plane tickets, but if you want to avoid spending your whole salary flying to visit your relatives over Thanksgiving, the time is nigh to start picking seats. That's according to the experts at Condé Nast Traveler, who cite data from Expedia and Skyscanner.

The latter found that it was cheapest to secure Thanksgiving tickets 11 weeks before the holiday. That means that you should have bought your ticket around September 4, but it's not too late; you can still save if you book now. Expedia's data shows that the cheapest time to buy is 61 to 90 days before you leave, so you still have until September 23 to snag a seat on a major airline without paying an obscene premium. (Relatively speaking, of course.)

When major travel holidays aren't involved, data shows that the best time to book a plane ticket is on a Sunday, at least 21 days ahead of your travel. But given that millions of other Americans also want to fly on the exact same days during Thanksgiving and Christmas, the calculus of booking is a bit more high stakes. If you sleep on tickets this month, you could be missing out on hundreds of dollars in savings. In the recent study cited by Condé Nast Traveler, Expedia found that people booking during the 61- to 90-day window saved up to 10 percent off the average ticket price, while last-minute bookers who bought tickets six days or less from their travel day paid up to 20 percent more.

Once you secure those Turkey Day tickets, you've got a new project: Your Christmas flights. By Hopper's estimates, those flights rise in price by $1.50 every day between the end of October and December 15 (after which they get even more expensive). However, playing the waiting game can be beneficial, too. Expedia found that the cheapest time to book Christmas flights was just 14 to 20 days out.

Before you buy, we also recommend checking CheapAir.com, which tracks 11,000 different airfares for flights around the holidays to analyze price trends. Because as miserable as holiday travel can be, you don't want to pay any more than you have to.

[h/t Condé Nast Traveler]

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Big Questions
Why Can’t You Wear White After Labor Day?
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Wearing white in the summer makes sense. Desert peoples have known for thousands of years that white clothing seems to keep you a little bit cooler than other colors. But wearing white only during the summer? While no one is completely sure exactly when or why this fashion rule came into effect, our best guess is that it had to do with snobbery in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

The wives of the super-rich ruled high society with an iron fist after the Civil War. As more and more people became millionaires, though, it was difficult to tell the difference between respectable old money families and those who only had vulgar new money. By the 1880s, in order to tell who was acceptable and who wasn’t, the women who were already “in” felt it necessary to create dozens of fashion rules that everyone in the know had to follow. That way, if a woman showed up at the opera in a dress that cost more than most Americans made in a year, but it had the wrong sleeve length, other women would know not to give her the time of day.

Not wearing white outside the summer months was another one of these silly rules. White was for weddings and resort wear, not dinner parties in the fall. Of course it could get extremely hot in September, and wearing white might make the most sense, but if you wanted to be appropriately attired you just did not do it. Labor Day became a federal holiday in 1894, and society eventually adopted it as the natural endpoint for summer fashion.

Not everyone followed this rule. Even some socialites continued to buck the trend, most famously Coco Chanel, who wore white year-round. But even though the rule was originally enforced by only a few hundred women, over the decades it trickled down to everyone else. By the 1950s, women’s magazines made it clear to middle class America: White clothing came out on Memorial Day and went away on Labor Day.

These days the fashion world is much more relaxed about what colors to wear and when, but every year you will still hear people say that white after Labor Day is unacceptable, all thanks to some snobby millionaires who decided that was a fashion no-no more than 100 years ago.

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