You took the time to come up with the algorithm you have.
You took the time to use Super Search to find a better way.
You took the time to post and ask about a better way.
You are taking the time to follow up on your post.
If you had "resorted to importing an entire module" your application would be done and you'd be doing something else right now.
Are you posting in the right place? Check out Where do I post X? to know for sure.
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Want more info? How to link or
or How to display code and escape characters
are good places to start.