The question Amir Aczel asks in his New York Times piece—"Why would so many talented mathematicians forsake academia to write outrageous stories and gags for an animated TV show?"— is one quite likely to occur to many who learn from Simon Singh's newly released The Simpsons and Their Mathematical Secrets that many of the show's writers boast impressive quantitative credentials.
Aczel's answer draws on the parallels he sees between telling a story and, say, proving a theorem. He concludes:
In their basic structure, then, mathematical reasoning and storytelling might not be so different after all.
Read the piece.