the man who loved numbers (1) my brain is open

Paul Erdös was the world's most prolific mathematician. With no job, no home and his few clothes in an orange carrier bag, he arrive at colleagues' houses, 'My brain is open' and stay. His fuel was Benzedrine and espresso, his motto was 'Another roof, another proof'.

It was dinnertime in Greenbrook, New Jersey, on a cold spring day in 1987 and Paul Erdös, then 74, lost four mathematical colleagues, who were sitting 50ft in front of him, green tea. , Erdös scanned the tables of the small Japanese restaurant, one arm held out to the side like . He was angry with himself his friends slip out of sight. His mistake was to pause at the while they went ahead. His arm was flapping wildly now and he was coughing.

"I don't understand why the SF has to send me a cold," he wheezed. (The SF is the Supreme Fascist, God, who was always Erdös by hiding his glasses, stealing his Hungarian passport or, worse yet, to Himself the elegant solutions to all sorts of mathematical problems.) "The SF created us to enjoy our suffering," said Erdös. "The sooner we die, the sooner we His plans."