Depends on what you do, man. :-) And what your interests are. Now generally the only math everyone really need is enough to ballance your checkbook. But depending on what your interests are, it can be either a useless abstract discipline, or an extremly powerfull tool. Take me for example. I used what I learned in trig to invent my own 3d engine. I'm now at work at my first 3d game demo. Video games use all sorts of complex math, without it my game could not exist. Also I'm into diy video projectors. Built my own movie theatre projector. Just yesterday I was questioning the focal length of my spherical reflector, I used math to write a formula for the radius of the reflector and confirm the exact focal length and where to place the reflector. Lets see... me and my friend were splitting a polarizer sheet for our projectors, and I wrote a formula to calculate the dimensions of each piece for a given height or width (the size was limited thus the width was dependant on the height and vice versa) I've used math in.. baking tripple batches of cookies or making coffee (easy stuff) I helped my mom calculate how many calories she can have daily. Uh... what the odds are for winning the lotterly. Lots of stuff, I can't remember all of it. Theres so much cool stuff I did with math! My life would be so boring without it!

As for what role math takes in daily life, math is the language of truth. Whether you you're a calculus wizard, or a 1st grade arithmatic drop out, math remains true, whether you like it or not. This is why it can be so powerfull. Nature is bound by math. Studying math allows you to harness nature. The most powerfull physical force in the world.

And btw, without math we wouldn't have, computers, automobiles, cell phones, tv's video games, radio's, ipods, refridgerators, toasters, ovens, and many other things we take for granted.