It’s my birthday and Erev Rosh Hashanah. Just as it was on the day I was born. My mother went into labour over brisket (or maybe it was roast chicken), and my Dad drove her down to Mt. Sinai and left her there when they said it might be a while. Come back in a few hours Mr. Rubin to collect your prize.
I never mention my age because aside from my parents, it seems I’m always older than almost everyone I know. But today I turn 57, in this year of 5777. It seems worthy of numerological note.
So I went looking for some information about the number 57. Much to my surprise, it seems there’s a lot said about it – profound, spiritual, obvious and inane thingamabobs, doohickeys and reference items.
I’m told 57 tends to be both an extrovert and an introvert, both talkative and introspective, both consulting with others and looking inward for answers. But the extroversion prevails most of the time. That’s all so weirdly true, but what about all the years when I’m not 57?
The number 57 is especially adept with creative writing. Writing is a creative expression that resonates with both 57's sense of personal freedom and its introspection. (I wouldn’t have used the word creative twice like that.) Better get to it immediately. There’s a lot to get done this year. I can already feel the pressure.
It seems the word moon is mentioned 57 times in the Bible, 47 in the Old Testament and ten in the New. What was happening at night during that New Testament? Not a lot it seems.
Fifty-seven is the sixteenth discrete semiprime and the sixth in the (3.q) family. With 58 it forms the fourth discrete bi-prime pair. 57 has an aliquot sum of 23 and is the first composite member of the 23-aliquot tree. Although 57 is not prime, it is jokingly known as the "Grothendieck prime" (Math humour. In some circles this has them spitting out their beer with laughter) after a story in which mathematician Alexander Grothendieck supposedly gave it as an example of a particular prime number. Hilarious, right? This story is repeated (I’m so glad, because a good joke deserves to be told over and over) in Part 2 of a biographical article on Grothendieck in Notices of the American Mathematical Society.
The number 57 is also a message from my angels to confidently follow the promptings of my intuition and higher-self. (Clearly I’ve relied too much on my lower-self. I’ll be asking for forgiveness for that over the next ten days, but I’ll start looking for my higher-self tomorrow.) I’m to trust my inner wisdom to lead and guide me through important life changes that will bring about positive outcomes on many levels.
Then something about making bold choices and changes in my life. I’m a Libra, I’m too busy weighing them to actually make them. But I’ll try to weigh them boldly.
There’s Heinz 57 sauce. Which is significant because I’ll put sauce on pretty much anything (not Heinz 57 sauce, but I’m told Sriracha has 57 secret ingredients.) Lightning McQueen from the Pixar movie Cars was originally supposed to have the number 57 (but then they changed it to 95). That just seems like a metaphor for being overlooked – so forget about that one.
Wikipedia helpfully told me that 57 is the natural number following 56 and proceeding 58. So I’m well prepared for what’s coming next year.
When I was younger and the high holidays fell on my birthday, I always felt ripped off. (Obviously fasting on the day was the worst of it, but synagogue didn’t seem much better.) Now I look at it as a gift.
Let me start this new year of mine, of ours, with apples and honey, with optimism, hope, newness. The fresh start that the high holidays offers the world (for God’s sake, can’t we learn to take it?) is itself a blessing – the blessing of possibly getting it right.
Shana Tova Tova Tova to us all.