#1

Two mathematicians are in a bar, having an argument. One claims that the average person knows very little about mathematics while the other disagrees, saying that most people can cope with maths very well.

The first mathematician goes off to the washroom. The second mathematician then calls the waitress over and tells her, “When my friend comes back, I’m going to ask you a question. All you have to do is answer, ‘One third x cubed.’ Understand?”

The waitress looks a bit surprised. “You mean you want me to say …”

“Yes,” says the mathematician, “‘one third x cubed’, that’s all. Can you say it? ‘One third x cubed’” …” he repeats the phrase over and over, and makes the waitress say it over and over again until he is satisfied that she has got it all memorized.

The first mathematician returns and his friend proposes a bet to prove his point, that most people do know something about maths. He says he will ask the blonde waitress a simple calculus question, and the first mathematician laughingly agrees. The second mathematician calls over the waitress and asks: “What is the integral of x squared?”

“One third x cubed,” replies the waitress, to the astonishment of the first mathematician and the chuckling delight of the other. She walks away, but in a moment she returns to their table and says, "Plus an arbitrary constant.”