Photo Credit:  Gemma Ganrner

I saw a recent challenge for posts that asked to take a picture that would put numbers front and center.  I love pictures … but I’m a words kind of person.  So here’s a toast to all the number lovers out there.  These words are for you …

The numbers on the calculator are the closest things to the numbers I remember from about 20 years ago when something called the “pager” was in.  This device has probably gone the way of cassette and VHS players, something called the mini-disk, or maybe in a few years the modern fad of the “Fit-bit.”  But you’ll see it referred to in the popular culture media of the 90s.  Phrases like “Blowing someone up on their pager,” or numerical messages like 143 – which was the pager shorthand for “I love you,” still find their way into music.  Imagine my surprise in 2010 listening to the radio and hearing a song by Bobby Brackins featuring Ray J that utilized the 3 number message copiously in the chorus of the song.  Needless to say I thought, would the current generation even understand what this means.  Nope – not unless someone made it meaningful.  When I say meaningful, I don’t mean like something deep and profound.  I mean instilling within those symbols another meaning than whatever purpose they serve … like how 80085 elicits giggles from little Middle School boys.  Or how 911 can bring up images of an ambulance rushing to a hospital or conjure up the terrorist attack on the United States fifteen years ago.  Numbers can hold so much within that symbol of straight and curved lines … anniversaries and birthdays.  Or going back to the calculator – which reminds me of a hilarious joke in an Ali Wong standup about Texas Instruments calculators being the biggest hustle back in the day … I remember feeling like I needed that cumbersome and expensive tool to do “math.”  Now there’s no need for calculators because truthfully you can Google almost any answer to a mathematical equation (cough – cough Wolfram Alpha).  Numbers – though, they do hold some mystical power … how 3’s, 4’s and 7’s, oooooh even 13’s have so many associations.  How about 23 for any basketball fans out there?  Or keeping track of Adele’s age along with her albums.

Then there’s the number zero.  0 – which can be so much added to other numbers – alone it is the harshest criticism you can give as a grade or as a title.  Then bring up the number one – the Ace in a suit of cards, the place that means you’re a winner.  I mean it sounds just like the past tense of winning – WON.  But perhaps the most magical of numbers … in my opinion, is the number two.  Just like letting people know you have a table for two.  It’s the number of possibility – or maybe just the favorite of hopeless romantics like myself.



  1. Pingback: Numbers (Public Phone) | What's (in) the picture?
  2. taphian · June 8, 2016

    wonderful photo

  3. jmacindoe · June 9, 2016

    Nice shot!

  4. Yousuf Bawany · June 9, 2016

    Beautiful composition; makes me want to see more of your work as a photographer.

    I’ll be following you from now on. Have an amazing day! 🙂

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