Monday, January 9, 2012

An Unorthodox Ordinal Number

Wow, check out this sign my friend Lindsay, of IAMNOTASTALKER, saw hanging outside a rugs store in Pasadena, California. Where to begin?

What store celebrates a 31-year anniversary? Don't get me wrong. Thirty-one is actually my favorite number. It has been ever since Yankees outfielder Dave Winfield first donned his No. 31 uniform in the early '80s. But it's not exactly a popular number, a milestone number. The world's finest hotels earn five stars. Bo Derek was a 10. Sixteen is sweet. Fifty is golden. Thirty-one? Baskin-Robbins notwithstanding, it has little cachet.

My main issue, however, is not with 31 but with those two little letters that follow. I've heard of imaginary numbers, but this is ridiculous. How on earth could this mistake go unnoticed? Go ahead, try to pronounce "31th." It's a tongue twister. As you reach the \ f \ sound, your mind can't help but segue into the start of the \ …ôr \ sound. But wait, there's a \ th \ sound at the end. What to do? Confusion reigns. THER-TEE-FERTH.

Lindsay saw this sign each time she headed to Old Town Pasadena. She walked by it for months, and each time she marveled at the fact that it was still up. I don't blame you, Lindsay. Someone did a number on this sign.


  1. If you think that's bad, how do you miss this?

  2. Uh, feel free to delete my previous comment. Something went terribly wrong. Here's the right link:

    Sorry for the cut-and-paste link...

  3. Thanks for the link. That's a classic. Well, it looks like there is a new blog out there quite similar to mine. It's nice to know I'm not the only one who enjoys finding errors and sharing them, with a touch of (I hope) humor. If you come across any, readers, call me at 1.800.OWEN. (If you read the pencilectomy link above, that number will make sense.)