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Pythagoras – remember him? He came up with the theorem for the hypotenuse, which most of us never use. Besides a mathematician he was also a philosopher and when it came to a consumer a strict vegetarian – fava beans, however, were anathema to his frugal diet; and the gas in particular when released wasn’t quiet. Pythagoras was a numbers buff. At its deepest level reality was the very stuff of all things numerical. Whether true or not the fact remains that numbers are a fact of life especially for the bureaucrat. If you doubt this, try contacting a government agency – for a particular service without the needed numbers ready.

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