I’m in my car in the parking lot of Home Depot, George Harrison on the radio, and I'm staring at the back of a package of Mylar numbers, considering that a strange little accident may have led to me uncovering a hidden agenda with the potential for world domination.
A couple of days ago my neighbor backed into my mailbox. This was either a) an accident as he claimed, or b) a purposeful act because he didn’t like it. Dutifully, he went out and bought me a new one and offered his sincere (or contrived) apology. With the new mail box installed I went to Home Depot to buy some new numbers.
I was thankful that my house number is simply 121 (this is a foreshadowing of things to come) and that my neighborhood decided to not number houses with thirty or forty numbers. That always seemed awful damned contentious to me. I could never understand long house numbers. It serves zero purpose other than what appears a lame attempt at status.
But back to me sitting in the car. For some reason, I turned the package of numbers over and read this. “This package contains 32 total characters: 4 each of 1-2-3 & 0; 3 each of 4-5-7 & 8; 2 each of 6 & 9.” What the hell is up with that disparity? Since when have numbers been relegated to such classification? What, 6 is not as prominent as 1? This seems like an overt attempt to profile numbers and to minimize some of these numbers directly out of existence.
Since I pretend to be a writer, I thought I would pretend to be a journalist and called the offending company. (A company whose zip is 45231, by the way.) I talked to Len in customer service.
“Len,” I said, “What’s up with the disparity of numbers in your product?”
“I wasn’t aware of that,” he responded, “Let me look.” After a few keystrokes (he was either looking at the product data or emailing the FBI my phone number) he said, “Not really sure. I guess it is from their market research.”
“Curious, don’t you think, Len?”
“I guess some numbers are used more than others,” he said.
Len drank the Kool-Aid.
But the scary thing is, if Len is right, and his company did do market research, who is the cabal behind slowly eliminating numbers so that businesses like Len’s eventually stop making certain numbers altogether? If the package of numbers I have is any indication of the future, numbers will soon be: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 0. Then: 1, 2, 3, 0. Let your mind get around that! (As I mentioned earlier, my house number is 121. Accident? I think not.)
You may ask, “What would be the motive behind this?” It’s quite obvious this is an attempt to bring about social discord and revolution. Think of it in these terms. Your telephone number has ten digits, and currently there are ten numbers, 0-9. Now, if you limit the available numbers to 1, 2, 3, and 0 the possible ten digit phone number combinations greatly decrease. Are you ready to give up your phone? Extrapolate that. Ready to give up your Social Security Number? Grasp the hugeness of this issue?
Am I wrong? Maybe. But if I’m not, this may be the last dispatch you will have from me. I changed “Len’s” name out of courtesy, but if I disappear, his real name is in the notebook on my bar. And by the way, the company that made the Mylar numbers? Their phone number has six 0’s.