The Professor's Song Lyrics - Tom Lehrer

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To "If You Give Me Your Attention."
If you give me your attention, I will tell you what I am.
I'm a brilliant math'matician - also something of a ham.
I have tried for numerous degrees, in fact I've one of each;
Of course that makes me eminently qualified to teach.
I understand the subject matter thoroughly, it's true,
And I can't see why it isn't all as obvious to you.
Each lecture is a masterpiece, meticulously planned,
Yet everybody tells me that I'm hard to understand,
And I can't think why.

My diagrams are models of true art, you must agree,
And my handwriting is famous for its legibility.
Take a word like "minimum" (to choose a random word),
This was performed at a blackboard, and the professor wrote:
/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/
For anyone to say he cannot read that, is absurd.
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The anecdotes I tell get more amusing every year,
Though frankly, what they go to prove is sometimes less than clear,
And all my explanations are quite lucid, I am sure,
Yet everybody tells me that my lectures are obscure,
And I can't think why.

Consider, for example, just the force of gravity:
It's inversely proportional to something - let me see -
It's r^3 - no, r^2 - no, it's just r, I'll bet -
The sign in front is plus - or is it minus, I forget -
Well, anyway, there is a force, of that there is no doubt.
All these formulas are trivial if you only think them out.
Yet students tell me, "I have memorized the whole year through
Ev'rything you've told us, but the problems I can't do."
And I can't think why!



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Tom Lehrer at his best | Reviewer: Requiem | 5/30/2007

Tom Lehrer is well known for his sarcastic sense of humour, and this song strongly emphasizes it. Knowing that he was a Maths professor at Harvard makes this song very self-ironic and Lehrer-stilish. I guess most of you will recognize the professor described in this song as yours, while thinking about those good old university days and those crazy professors. :)

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