by Steve


700 is the natural number following 699.

700 is the natural number preceding 701.

700 is the sum of four consecutive prime numbers, 167 + 173 + 179 + 181. I’m not sure if this has any mathematical value. These kinds of things feel a little like arithmetical gymnastics, something that is impressive, looks impossible to do yourself, but essentially forgettable. Or maybe it feels like the steps towards a greater understanding of the world, but the sort of understanding someone else comes to, that will be essentially unobtainable to the likes of me. Or even something more mystical, less about unlocking reason, more about some deeper meaning. I explored 700 in numerology, the practice of finding the mystical and divine in numbers. Unfortunately, I couldn’t make much sense of it all. I think the jist of it was 700 means I’m doing well and should keep on trucking. I’m paraphrasing slightly here. I imagine there is similar symbolism behind other numbers, but like astrology there is a degree of interpretation and making the definition or reading broad enough that everyone can relate. I may be wrong with that assumption, but I wasn’t willing to dive down the numerology rabbit hole. Most numerology websites appear to have been designed by someone with a fetish for Geocities sites circa 1998. However, for all I know, the number 700, and other numbers that are the sum of consecutive prime numbers, may be incredibly important in our day-to-day lives, either mystically or scientifically.

Peter Parker died in issue 700 of The Amazing Spider-Man, the last edition of the particular comic book. Parker would eventually return, as you can do that sort of thing in comic books. I very much feel for those people who have to maintain continuity in comic books, with all the twists and turns, reboots and alternate universes. Overarching comic book plots may be the most complex narratives in modern culture. Or they might just be a good means of creating more titles and shifting more units. Or maybe both.

The 700 Club is the flagship programme on the Christian Broadcasting Network. It is apparently one of the longest running shows on cable television in the United States. I guess Christianity is something you can keep talking about for many years. However, I generally feel a little queasy about religious television programmes. I can see the value and importance of ceremony. I’m not sure a TV show is the best place for it. And generally, I prefer religion without the right-wing editorialising, which is not always possible, but seems even less so when religion gets all showbusiness-y. It appears that the longest running cable TV shows in America cover either religion or sport, which sounds about right. The two great faiths.

Arnold Schwarzenegger had 700 words of dialogue in Terminator 2: Judgment Day. I prefer the spelling “Judgement” to “Judgment”, that always looks wrong to me. However, from a quick read of various heated online discussions among grammarians I’d do well to stay out of that fight.

Year 700 was a leap year. I didn’t realise leap years were that old. It turns out they are really old, like Roman old. But I suppose once you start having calendars, it doesn’t take that long a time before everything is a little out of sync. But how do you work out the days/dates are getting all screwy, rather than it just being odd weather for the time of year? I guess it goes back to the maths. And looking at the sun, I guess. Although not too closely.

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood? About 700 pounds. I knew the phrase, but I didn’t know the answer. I didn’t even know what I woodchuck is. It turns out it is a groundhog. So, with the rhyme and the Day woodchucks/groundhogs have got the broader cultural relevance thing pretty much covered.

This is post 700 on this blog. I would like to pretend that each and every post has been of immaculate quality. However, I think this post probably disproves that. I’m not sure it is a particularly remarkable milestone. Not much more impressive than 699, less impressive than 701. But I figured I’d mark the occasion anyway. And through the medium of the number 700 I’ve nearly, almost learned a few things.

Today’s post has been brought to you by the number 700.

Image from leduc divad, via Flickr