Three, Five, Seven Steps To Whatever


Why does everything need to be in numbers?

numbersThere are fifty ways to leave your lover, twelve steps to sobriety, numerous ways to kill someone and leave them in a farm field, and–of course–the ten commandments.

I’ve been noticing a lot of articles about seven steps toward success, five ways to get your website noticed, twenty must-haves (and I mean MUST HAVES) for any bridal shower, blah, blah, blah….

I think we are quantifying ourselves into data purgatory.

I mean, we have stats about how far we walk, when we wake up, how you want to sleep (thanks Select Comfort).  We count calories and then want to slit our throats because we didn’t do enough activity to exhaust that dreaded number of calories we are obsessed with, we collect numbers on how far we ran, swam, and then followed that up with your heart rate.

I’m often asked if I have a heart.

When you’ve collected all your numbers–intimate or not–you post them on social media.

What is this telling you?

I can’t read your damn mind, but what it’s telling me is that we are more concerned about the quantity of life than the quality.

Let’s start with the “Amazing Race.” They have to visit thirteen or maybe fifteen countries over the course of a three or two month period while attempting different tasks–mental and physical–until the final couple crosses the finish line first to win a million bucks. When they are traveling to all of these countries, do you think they would have the time to stop and smell whatever it is that that country is famous for?

No.

It’s like when people go on vacation with their family. Halfway through your vacation, you’re pissed off and exhausted. Why? Because you need to cram ten activities into each fucking day, that’s why.

And, that’s just stupid because…..it’s VACATION. Instead of the quality of time spent on a much needed rest (i.e. vacation), your stress level is rising way past your blood pressure count–which you checked on your new iWatch–while waiting in line for a fun little ride at Disney World that will cost you about two hours of your life you’ll never get back, plus an enormous amount of money to even enjoy the damn ride.

Are you enjoying your vacation because it’s filled with quantity rather than quality?

I didn’t think so.

We act upon numbers, or data. That’s just the way it is. But, what happens when the data is full of shit? What if the numbers are skewed? If you have a tattoo on your wrist your iWatch won’t be accurate, so why bother?

Why did they use the number fifty in titling the book, “Fifty Shades of Grey?” Is it because this guy has fifty different personalities? Fifty ways to have hedonistic sex? Fifty ways to make you squirm in your seat?

I guess numbers seem more concrete to us. Perhaps it’s simpler to identify with. Numbers are fast.

Quick! Give me three things you want to do right now!

Six Easy Ways To Retire At 45. There are six easy ways? Seriously? I thought there were more like, oh, I don’t know, 82.

What? I can lose ten pounds just following three simple rules? Sign me up!

I forgot: which five foods will make me live until I’m 100? I want to be certain I don’t eat them because I don’t want to live to be fucking 100.

Numbers appear more rational to people. This is why they believe them more than they believe there is a tooth fairy and a big rabbit called the Easter bunny.

People also like numbers with social media. You only have 140 characters–or less–to write your thoughts, promotion, skill, rant or mantra. Facebook will tell you have 350 friends, but half of them are never on Facebook.

Facebook will give you insights to your ads. Isn’t that insightful of them?

So, think about it. Next time you’re at the store and want to get that two for one sale of crack cream for the heels of your feet, is the data really viable? Are there other crack creams that are less money so you can buy, like maybe ten jars?

I gotta go. I have to make a recipe that calls for fifteen drumsticks. The only packages in the grocery store had the “family size” of about forty-five drumsticks. That’s a lot of drumsticks for two people.

I’ll have to check my calorie counter after dinner to see how close I am to killing myself.

And, lastly, I was told there would be no math in writing blog posts.

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