Daina Taimina

It’s fair to say that I was intimidated at the thought of calling Dr. Taimina on the phone.  First of all, she was recommended by the very intelligent Sarah Kahn who spoke respectfully of Daina’s books and lectures; Then I did a Google search and read further accolades.   I convinced myself that there was no way I could simply contact a mathematician of this stature and actually have a conversation.  So I hedged my bets and sent a timid e-mail.  Boy did I learn a lesson about bogey men in the closet, I let my imagination create fear.  Daina is charming, talkative, friendly and oh so very approachable…I feel as though I already know her and look forward to meeting her next week.   Did you know she was featured in a TED talk?

We asked her to answer our interview questions and this is what she said…I love that she’s happiest when she’s learning…me too;)

When I was 16 I thought…That in year 2000 I will be very old – already 46! 🙂

My favorite time of the day is…morning –  full of hope that there is a whole day ahead to do so many things.

Proudest career moment…In January 2012 I received the Euler Book prize for “Crocheting Adventures with the Hyperbolic Planes”

The song/book/movie that changed my lifeThe Wren  by Resat Nuri Guntekin – after reading it when I was 14 I knew I will be a teacher.

Guiltiest pleasure…good chocolate – dark and bitter

My favorite item of clothing…jeans

I still get nervous when…I start teaching a new class and do not know what the audience will be

Daily practice…cooking – my husband says it is my meditation time.

The art tool I couldn’t live without…does knitting needles count?  But I still my watercolor brushes in sight in hope that one day I will get away from crochet hook and will paint again.

Words I live by…I can do it

What makes me happy…is learning. There are so many things I do not know! I am also happy to meet so any interesting and nice people through my crocheting.

The lesson I keep learning…I have trouble answering this – I guess there are lessons I will never learn.

You can never have too many…friends

Favorite spot on the planet…Sicily – Mount Etna.

Whole living means…to live every day like it your last one.  I like how Ray Bradbury said – every day we have to jump from a cliff and grow wings while falling.

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