Forty-seven percent: Sounds like some of my scores on college exams. Well, not exactly 47 percent but around there. You get my drift.
Six trillion: All I understand about this number is there are about a trillion zeroes after the six.
One percenters and ninety-nine percenters: All I know about this is that 99 is a much cooler-looking football number on a jersey than one. Hot dogs, divas, and pretty boys wear the number 1 on their football jerseys and who likes any of those types?
These are three numbers being pounded into our collective living rooms and noggins about the competition for the next president of the United States.
What I don't like about the number 47 is there are no football players I like, or any athletes in any sport, who wear or wore that number. This is my litmus test for wether a number is cool or not; whether a cool player wore that number. If you have ever learned anything about the psychology of numbers, you find out that people, for whatever reason, tend to like odd numbers more than even numbers. It's a subtle thing, deep in the human psyche. Forty-seven just looks more pleasing to the eye than, say, 46 and 48, even numbers, according to research findings. I learned about even and odd numbers in fourth grade or so and still remember despite my early senility now coalescing.
I love the number six trillion even though it's an even number. It's wild, like Mike Tyson wrestling an untamed tiger in front of a beachfront motel on the Jersey Shore. Anything trillion wasn't even on the radar when learning math in school. Billions were as far out as teachers were willing to wade. At the time I thought billions were the most far out and mysterious of all numbers, like going to the planet Mars on Santa's sleigh in a windstorm while eating Oreos. Trillions weren't even mentioned, except maybe once or twice in all my years of school. Trillions were the untouchables the unmentionables, almost taboo.
The problem with six trillion is there are no sports jerseys big enough to fit all the zeroes. In case you hadn't noticed, the Boston Red Sox have had difficulty squeezing in Saltalamacchia on the back of Jarrod's jersey. He plays catcher for them. Can you imagine if Jarrod's number was six trillion? The jersey would look like, well, I don't even want to imagine.
The best part of six trillion is fantasizing what I would do if I had six trillion dollars. Two things at the outset for sure: Eat at McDonalds at least twice a day instead of my once a day routine now; buy the Washington Redskins and oust current owner, Dan Snyder. He's inept.
I'm favorably disposed to 99 because it reminds me of the classic Prince lyric in one of his most famous songs, "We're gonna party like it's 1999." Who doesn't love thinking about an upcoming party? I would love to party with 99 people, all Larry Bird clones. At least one of them, based on the laws of probability and statistics, would tell me what it was like to grow up in Nowhere, Indiana and become one of the top three greatest basketball players of all time. The other 98 would ignore me.
If I were at a party, I would want to hang out with the football players who wore the number 99 in their high school days. They would be down to Earth, real, drinkers of cheap beer. The guys who wore number one would be posturing, looking over my shoulder for someone else at the party more connected to the more powerful. I would get in a dispute with at least one of these guys by asking if in addition to wearing the number one did they also wear white cleats and date the prettiest cheerleaders? I would mock them and they would sense me doing so and it would make them perturbed.
So as you go to the ballot booth this November, keep in mind my thoughts about these key numbers. If you do, you will become one of my one percenters in the most positive sense you can imagine.