Today is December 12, 2012 or, more succinctly — 12-12-12 — or, more elaborately, “Twelve, Twelve, Twelve.”  I love it when calendrical numbers unify like that and create a grander meaning together than they do apart.  I haven’t felt this delighted since, well, the wondrous double November whammy way back in aught ’11: 11-11-11 and 11-1-11 ten days before that.

I’m not the only one obsessing over 12-12-12 — which reads in my mind as “1-212” repeating ad infinitum, that eerily, and doubly, reflects my latest 212 Area Code phone number purchase two days ago — but today is also a big day for weddings:

They are among the thousands of couples expected to declare their vows of everlasting love in Las Vegas on Wednesday, Dec. 12 — the last such triple-date likely to occur in their lifetimes.

Many couples consider it lucky to get married on such a propitious date; there was an especially large crush on 07-07-07, which broke Las Vegas records, and 10-10-10 and 11-11-11. During the four-day periods leading up to those dates, Clark County, which includes Las Vegas, issued licenses to 4,333; 3,090; and 3,342 couples. The total for an average month would be about 7,500.

Growing up, 12 was always my favorite number.  I have no idea why.  Most kids had a single digit as their lucky number.  Mine was 12 and I have the sense that number has served me well across the lingering arc of my lifetime even though I can’t think of any particular benefit I can name, other than the calming, if infrequent, invocation of my mantra: “When it doubt, pick twelve!” The fact that 12 is rarely an option to choose in most “pick a number” events really does pare down the availability of actually ever employing my lucky number in a real life situation.

Is there a number has served you well over the years?  I don’t play the lottery and I don’t frequent casinos, so favoring one number over another doesn’t appear to have any quantifiable imprint on my life.

I do sort of feel an absolute longing for 01-01-2101 — the next time the calendar plays into our numeric favor — only because I’ll surely miss its arrival in 89 years.


  1. I am reminded of a story that my physics teacher told us when I was in high school. When he enlisted in the army years beforehand, they asked him his height. He said “five feet” and they marked it on the sheet with a mark in the appropriate place, and then he added “and twelve inches…” Well there was no way to mark twelve inches on the form — it only had one through eleven, and they had already marked five so they couldn’t unmark it — so they had to start from scratch with a new form. He was reprimanded for being correct yet incorrect at the same time, from their perspective!

    Twelve is the only number that, when rolled in Monopoly, always means that you rolled a double — and therefore usually get something good associated with rolling a double!

    I suppose I am also a fan of the number. 🙂 Thanks for the interesting read!

    1. I’m not sure I understand why your physics teacher gave his height in that way unless he was trying to be a jerk. Was he? No one is ever measured as “12 inches” when it comes to determining height. Of course they’d have to start over!

      Right! Double Sixes = 12! That’s always fun to see come shining up in a game.

      I may like the number 12 because it is the simplest lowest number that divides so cleanly and easily so often — 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 12 — I like having options!

      As well, 12 — in my mind — is the last true year of childhood. 13, and you’re in the teen years, and everything else is downhill from there… SMILE!

      1. David,

        I don’t think he was trying to be a jerk so much as he was trying to be Richard Feynman. He wanted to be technically accurate in his answer yet incorrect at the same time! Of course if this were to happen today, the person would just move their mouse over an inch and fix it!

        13 is also the age at which a Jewish boy becomes a Bar Mitzvah — considered like an adult!

        1. I have to say he was being a bit of a jerk, Gordon, and to brag about it to his high school students later is even more evidence of his witting bad behavior. It is never technically accurate to use “12 inches” when talking about one’s height. His answer was 100% incorrect.

          Ah! 13! So young to be man! But better than staying 12. SMILE!

  2. 5′ 12″ as an answer is being a smart aleck, there’s no other way to define it. 🙂

    I watch on days like 12.12.12 to see if anything fun, interesting, or out of the ordinary happens. It usually doesn’t. So I have more fun counting weddings in Vegas, and watching the others scramble.
    It’s like going to the mall. It’s great people-watching.

    1. Right, Lillian! Who wants to deal with a smart aleck, anyway! They are attention seekers.

      I love to people watch, too. You learn a lot about the world that way!

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