A long time ago I asked my aging, hippy-ish Algebra II teacher why I needed to know algebra, since I didn’t plan on using math in my profession.
“To be a better person,” she said.
What she should have said was: “Because eventually you’ll grow up and your brain will start to grow moss after you’ve deluged it with Robert Rodriguez movies and Afro Celt Sound System CDs, and you’ll desperately need the rigor that Algebra could have afforded you when you’re trying to write a CGI script that allows people to mail you from your web site using a form field rather than an ugly HTML tag.”
If she had said that, I would have started paying attention. Damn hippies.