Don't think China's number is up. The dragon has decided to knock off ‘unlucky numbers' such as four, 13 and 14 in registration of addresses and residences. Let us tell you this much. It is neither aimed at making the lives of its 1.3 billion citizens easier nor is it an attempt to coalesce might with good fortune to help the dragon extend its influence far and wide. We know what has really triggered Beijing to take a solemn vow to prohibit these numbers. And as on many other matters, dear reader, you can take our word for it. The latest move by the Beijing Municipal Administration of Quality and Technology Supervision is that country's attempt at doing away with superstition.
In our case, we have no such inhibitions. We say bring it on. We have no qualms, if we have the resources that is, to buy a fancy number plate for millions of rupees. If 007 is what catches your imagination, then it can be had with the government actively pitching in to make this yours for a price.
But our obsession with numerology does not stop there. For those of you from the south, it is well known that the more orthodox will not step out of the house until an appointed time, this being rahu kalam. Then there is the little matter of not getting married, travelling, taking up a job and so on unless it is on a particular date. If this is not numerology, then what is? Beijing may not be able to fathom this, but we even go so far as to change the spelling of our names in keeping with numerology. The more famous among us are the venerable Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa and numerous film stars. And yes, we are a bit worried about the number 13, though our new president Pranab Mukherjee is not one to be concerned about this. Can you tell us of too many high rises which have a 13th floor in them? Or for that matter, luxury hotels. But have no fear, we editorial writers are not so numerically worried. So on the 13th of every month, be sure that you will get your daily fare.