“99 Word Problems” Lyrics

Jerome A. White

If you got math homework I feel bad for you son
99 word problems and you ain’t solved one

[Verse One]
I got kids lined in rows in this class they chose
Minds so bright that their earholes glow
But when I throw ‘em word problems, mental progress slows
A third stare catatonic like their brains just froze
One in eight throw off their shoes and start to count on their toes
Another 25% have fingers shoved up their nose
The remaining seven drop their heads and doze
Well that’s my whole class, so the story goes
And did you note the word problem that’s contained in the prose?
How many schmoes in my class? That’s the question I pose, SO
If you can’t solve it you’re not using your brain
Just try for a minute ‘fore you start to complain, sucka
There’s so much to lose but even more to gain
I’m seein’ drizzles of effort, yo, make it rain!
I know you can do it kid, you ain’t dumb
But out of 99 problems bro, you ain’t solved one
Hit me

99 word problems and you ain’t solved one
If you got math homework I feel bad for you son
99 word problems and you ain’t solved one
Hit me

[Verse Two]
The year’s ’91 and I’m the king of my school
My mathematical skills make the girlies drool
I’m out hustlin’ for dough so I can pay for college
Standin’ on the corner spittin’ pure number knowledge
Up rolls 5-0, he starts stirrin’ up static
I guess he wanna arrest me for possessin’ quadratics
I heard “Son, do you know what I approached you for?”
‘Cause my SAT score is better than yours?
I learned math on these streets, my equation’s legit
But I been sellin’ logarithms with a phony permit
Man, I ain’t gettin’ locked up back in Rikers, yo
So I hops on my supa-fly bicycle
Blazin’ 20 miles an hour through my middle class suburbs
Duck in my mama’s crib and stash my math in her cupboard
Other punks on the corner might pack a thirty-eight
I pack a TI-83 fool, it suits me great
So when the block cools off I hop back on my ride
Cruise 15 miles an hour back to the mathsiiiiide!
Arrive back at my corner, suckas givin’ me lip
‘Cause I took 10 minutes longer than my previous trip
Now how far did I travel, yo, does anyone know?
That’s the word problem that’s contained in the prose!
Go figure it out; That’s part of the fun
99 word problems; Can you solve this one?
Hit me

[Chorus 2x]

[Verse Three]
Now once upon a time not too long ago
I stepped up to this chick and I said “Hello” (hehe-snort)
I’m da mellow math gangsta, you wanna get with it?
She said “I’ll give you some clues, calculate my digits
If you a real man, it won’t take you long to solve ‘em”
Well Ima never back down from a sexy word problem.
“I got a standard phone number separated by a dash
And lemme tell you something special about the two halves:
The three digits at the front as well as the final four
Both make perfect squares,” and then she turned for the door
I said “Hold on baby doll, you gotta give me more”
She paused, licked her lips, and walked back real slow
“The first digit ain’t one, I tell you that fo’ sho’
Now here’s the last clue, and then I gots to go:
The entire seven digits, that’s a perfect square too!”
I thought for a minute; Right there, that’s when I knew
She gazed into my eyes, she knew I got it right
We went back to my crib and made math all night!
Number nerd gets the girl, and that’s a perfect sum
Now did you catch the word problem? I can solve every one!
Hit me

[Chorus 2x]

I’m crazy for this one!
It’s your math teacher (hehe-snort)