One of my good friends and fellow nuts was talking the other day about her personal trifecta of goals/achievements for the year. She’s flat out amazing, I must say, and has pushed herself to the highest levels. I get the honor of sharing the third part of that list with her in a few weeks.
All of this got me thinking about numbers. I’ve talked about numbers before, of course. If you know me, you know I am all about music. It’s 50/50 that I’m connecting what you just said to an obscure song lyric while we talk, for the record. And, not surprisingly as a music person, I have an affinity for numbers. After all, music is math out loud. I’m a #mathnerd, yes, and I enjoy stats and Excel files. It is who I am. If you know me you may know that about me as well.
When I see the meme on the web, “Add 28 + 47 – what’s the answer and how did your brain get there?” Well, for me, the answer is clearly 75 and I got there because… it just is. Can I do the “20 + 40 + 7 + 8” breakout or whatever? Sure I can. But the first time I saw those numbers it was just 75. These are things I can just do. On the flip side, I can follow all the steps for a plumbing project and it will still leak. Stupid plumbing…
Let’s Talk Levels of Nerd-dom
Here’s something you may NOT know, though: I do this thing. Numbers “in the wild” as it were are there to be computed. If I see a string of numbers, I add it. When I see a license plate I convert the letters to numbers (A=1, E=5, J=10, etc.) and add the total up. I just do it, have for decades. If the total comes to, say, 42 on a particular plate, that’s somehow good in my head because it’s divisible by 3. Even better is if it’s divisible by 9. It just is.
Three runs throughout our culture and history. Good/bad things are said to happen in 3s. Christianity has the Trinity. The ancient Greeks thought 3 was the perfect number, symbolic of harmony, wisdom, and understanding. And, of course, there’s Schoolhouse Rock. If you’re in my age range, you likely remember this. “I’m Just A Bill,” “Conjunction Junction,” and this little ditty:
This is the original, not the Blind Melon cover. Yes, that’s a thing.
If I’m honest, I’m not big on numerology or anything like that. However, if I’m honest, I’ve become more aware and accepting of things I don’t really understand over the last few years. Just because it doesn’t sync with me right now doesn’t mean it doesn’t have value or isn’t true. Maybe I just haven’t found my way to it yet.
3 though (and 9 too), there’s something about it that clicks for me. I have completed two Spartan trifectas. In October I will run my 3rd half marathon with my sister and help her achieve her goal. Is 3 really a magic number? I can’t say for sure, but it feels pretty special to me.
Last year the world stopped and I didn’t hit my Spartan trifecta… but this year we will get back on track. My friend will complete her personal trifecta in grand style, I believe that. I will be there with her and crush a few goals of my own. There may even be a few 3s along the way. Let’s get to it!
Photo by Will Bolding on Unsplash