‘What’s in a name’ is a question that lots of people ask, and fail to answer effectively. Even when all answers fail to convince, people do believe in importance of certain names anyway.
Likewise, numbers have a special significance to people who are geeks, astrologers, mathematicians and of course, astronomers. With that in mind, today has to be a special day as it is the 11th of November, 2011 or 11/11/11. This is the last binary date that most of us might see in our lifetimes. The next six digit binary date would arrive only on January 1, 2100. People across the world had planned to coincide the births of their babies with 11/11/11. Moreover, it also happens to be the Veteran’s Day when major conflicts of World War I came to an end. However, what intrigues us all is why numbers like 11/11/11 or 06/06/06 continue to enchant us and keep us talking.
There may no real significance to the number anyway, but they do tend to be good topics for making conversation. Most people who are geeky tend to find it difficult to socialize or so is the assumption. Thus, it is possible that numbers or dates such as today’s make for great topics to talk about. Moreover, today’s date being a binary number has a nerdy significance as well. As we all know, computers have traditionally been associated with binary numbers of 0 and 1.
This also makes me want to associate 11/11/11 with postmodernism and its great figureheads such as Ludwig Wittgenstein and Jean-François Lyotard, who spoke about the binaries in us and the postmodern condition. Lyotard explained postmodernism as incredulity towards overgeneralizations and simplifications like 0 and 1, good or bad, saint or sinner, etc. Such ‘black and white’ thinking can be termed as binaries too, and it is pretty much how the world works today. Perhaps, today signifies the importance of becoming aware of those binaries or black and white thinking which exists in all of us, so that we can try and see other peoples’ points of view as well. My 11/11/11 resolution is to look at the dichotomies or binaries that exist in my mind, and to explore alternate meanings. What is yours?