# HowTo:Divide by One

Dividing by One is the simplest way to prove that mathematics is wrong. Most proofs depend upon division by zero, or imaginary numbers. As such, controversy shrouds these "proofs." But Division by One is well-defined. And while One may be the loneliest number, it is certainly not imaginary.

## Analogy

Before attempting even the simplest arithmetic, it is important to have a good analogy. In our case, we shall think of division as being like slicing a cake. If you were ever a child, and ever went to school, and didn't suffer from some congenital brain malady, you should have the picture by now. But just in case...

If we want to divide by two, we simply slice the cake into two equal pieces. If we want to divide by three, we slice it into three equal pieces (or "in thirds," as it were).

At this point, the question arises, "Why can't we use a pie for our analogy?" To this I say, "For the love of God, man, be rational!"

## Tools

Obviously, the only tool we need is a sharp knife. This knife will represent the "slash" in fractions such as 1/2 or 2/3. In other words, the knife shall represent the operation of division itself.

## First Attempt

Since x/1 = x, we can choose any number for x, try to divide by one, and see if the result is the number we chose.

Let's choose x=1 since he still looks lonely. Returning to our analogy (where all good mathematics is done), we have one single cake which we wish to cut into one equal piece. We raise our knife, and lo, the result is before us before we even begin!