May 21st, 2010

We are now entering the fifth power

I subscribe to a lunatic form of birthday numerology, which–while pleasing to me–has no known correlation whatsoever with reality. Sometimes when I start prattling on to someone about what their current age means for their fortunes, I assume they know I am being in(s)ane, but then they say, “Really?” and I get worried. So just to be clear:

I made this shit up.

I was good at high school math, not amazing, but good enough that I took it in university too. I was not good at university math, but I was a ways into it before I realized that. So now…I know a lot of low-level math stuff, but my life is pretty word-based. My only chances to use numbers are 1) calculating the tip in a restaurant, 2) tax season (I got reassessed yesterday–boo!), 3) birthdays.

My age is the number most central to my life, and I like thinking about it (certainly more central and more pleasant than my income, or my address, SIN, whatever). My mom and I even have an adorable algorithm that spits out the years in which our ages will be the reverse (diget-wise) of each other (this is possible because I was born in a year in which my mother’s age was divisble by nine–isn’t that cool? Did you just stop reading?)

All this is by way of saying, I am going to turn 32 on Sunday. Do you know what 32 is? Well, the subject line mentions it, but maybe you had a boyfriend/girlfriend in grade 9 and thus your math homework from that year does not loom in your memory as vividly as it does in mine.

32 is 25 or 2 x 2 x 2 x2 x2 or the only fifth power in the human lifespan!!! The next one is 263, possible mainly for trees and coral. I guess you could count age 1 as a fifth power, because it is all powers (all powerful?) but that seems like sort of cheating and anyway I didn’t get much out of math as an infant.

So this year is going to be a year unlike any other for me, unlike anything I’ve ever experienced…and yet, because it is so divisible, I think that 32 will contain much that is familiar as component parts, though perhaps in new forms.

This is where I figure it is ok if I believe my own mumbo-jumbo, but I have to FYI anyone who is listening to me without rolling their eyes that they probably shouldn’t (listen to me, not roll their eyes–they probably should do that).

Do I have a point? Oh, barely. I’m just really really excited to be 25. Though 31 (a prime, and therefore a year of strength due to indivisibility) was a pretty fantastic age, too. Actually, I liked 30 too…

Maybe mathiness is just excuse to talk about my birthday. I like other things about birthdays besides numbers…cake, glitter, gifts, hugs, balloons…

This is going to be a really good weekend, I think. The rest of the year, too.

6 Responses to “We are now entering the fifth power”

  • Wren says:

    I do this, too! I was boycotting 31 last year, on the grounds that prime numbers give me the creeps. I just told everyone that I was 32. No one seemed very confused that I didn’t get any older last month. I, too, am please to be a power of two. Even better, my mom is 64 this year!


  • Wren says:

    PS. Happy Birthday!


  • Rebecca says:

    That is amazing–*the* fifth power and *the* sixth power of the human lifespan, in one year in one family. You guys are so united this year!

    And thanks for the birthday wishes!


  • Sachiko says:

    This is the theory of a raving nerd. I heartily approve!


  • Rebecca says:

    Sachiko, I like the idea of a “raving near”–eyes wild behind glasses, waving an atlas and a calculator, ranting about barometric pressure–c’est moi!


  • Sachiko says:

    And then writing about it on the Internet. Rave on!


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So Much Love by Rebecca Rosenblum

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