Monday, January 26, 2009

My life in numbers

There are some numbers that will always stand out to me. They don't necessarily define who I am as a person, but no matter where I am, when I see these sequences of numbers, it reminds me of their importance in my life.

My house numbers. This is the house I've lived in for almost 27 years. My childhood home. My "first" house. My shelter, albeit, tumultuous at times.

My ID number. I'm not required to give much of my personal information at work, other than this number. I am operator 462, dispatcher 462, employee number 462. These three numbers are on all my employee documents and files. I am a number there. A number with a voice, but, nonetheless, a number.

What I am to the public. What pays my bills. What I'm trained to do. The sum of the requests and calls that come in to these three telephone numbers is, well, innumerable. Still if you had to choose a number, this is not a bad number to have to represent yourself to the public at large.

The first time I went to Hawaii, I was so enamored with the North Shore, I bought up all kinds of souveniers including this license plate. It was from this "art gallery" which was basically an run down old surfer pad/Marley shrine run by some local vagrants who sold odds and ends and knick-knacks for whatever they could convinve a buyer to pay for them. This place was a sight. There were chickens running around, an old VW bug made into a plater box, kids in tie-dye shirt playing soccer in the front yard, and some sort of archway mantle made out of surfboards that were spraypainted with Marley lyrics that graced you as you walked into the front yard. I recall that there was a sign somewhere that read pictures were welcome but they would cost the photographer for each shot. It was part of the "museum upkeep" plan. In lieu of paying for each of my shots, I went ahead bought 2 license plates that day. An old black bicycle plate and this one. I keep it up on the shelf next to some old shells, a few starfish, and the pictures I would come to take of the Lagoons at Ko'Olina over the next few years. It's gone from one "museum" to the next.

Other than being another Hawaiian chochki, there's no real significance to this plate outside of the numbers up in the right hand corner. This plate and I were born in the same year. '81. I always recognize the significance of those two numbers when I see them side by side. Good ol' 1981.


  1. Maybe DSS will mean something to you someday too. You know, "DSS" is lack of paying child support so maybe thats something to look forward to. I'm just saying....