This gay maths problem has gone viral

A maths problem about a gay couple is going viral.

Ireland’s Got Talent 2018 semi-finallist Paul Ryder tweeted the question, which has surprised and delighted people all over the internet.

In a post which now has more than 2,000 retweets and likes, the drag performer showed a picture of a question which appears to be in a school textbook.


It said: “Craig buys his boyfriend a birthday present that costs €215.65 including VAT @ 13.5 percent. What was the original bill before VAT was added?”

Above the photo, Paul wrote: “Friend of mine is a teacher and just sent this to our WhatsApp group saying she’d never seen anything like it before. ‍❤️‍ ‍ ”

Happy gay couple sitting on white brick wall background

Stock image of gay couple

We haven’t either.

Educational textbooks which contain anti-gay comments are relatively common – in February, Open University apologised for a book which listed homosexuality as a “social problem” alongside drug-taking and rape.

And a textbook which launched in Chinese schools last year taught children about sexuality, same-sex couples and gender equality in the most adorable, accurate way.

But this question slips a gay couple into a question in a subject with nothing to do with sexuality, simply because it’s a normal, natural occurrence that makes for a good example of real-life maths.

There is no fuss – just acceptance.

Paul, 30, commented underneath: “Makes me smile to see how far things have come since I was in school which was a shite experience for me. ”

Other Twitter users were equally enthusiastic about the development, with one writing: “Both myself and my daughter thought there was something wrong with the sum and had to read it a few times before I realised the boyfriend bit was the point.


“About time, but it’s also good that we read the question as nothing unusual. #Boyfriend #present #VAT #LGBTQisNatural.”

Another said: “This is fab. Small things like this help to unpick the heteronormative programming that our kids are subjected to on a daily basis. ❤️ ”


One commenter summed up a lot of people’s reactions to the picture, writing: “I didn’t realise the boyfriend was the thing until I read the comments. That’s so lovely .”


Another person wrote, insightfully: “The littlest of things like these can help kids that are coming to terms with who they are.

“It would’ve definitely helped me to more normal in my teen years when I was realising who I am & coming out & dealing with all of the things that come with that process.”


And one mother commented: “My daughter is 10, and I kind of think she wouldn’t bat an eyelid at seeing this in a test… Happily, they are growing up in a world where kids are much more aware of LGBT people, & more of this kind of thing will help. ️‍ ”


Speaking to INSIDER, Paul said: “I think it’s a shock to see the school system getting on board with the changing Ireland we live in and it becoming the ‘norm,’ which helps the cause against bullying so much.”