Pattaya Mail turns over two little ducks

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As you read this, the Pattaya Mail is celebrating its 22nd birthday, and a very significant birthday indeed. For me, writing for the Pattaya Mail is very reminiscent of Catch-22, the 1961 novel (and its 1970 film version) by Joseph Heller, which consequently gave rise to the expression “Catch-22”. The editor says I can stop writing next week, but when next week comes, there is another ‘next week’ looming and the editor waiting again! It never ends.

Of course, at all birthdays one tends to reminisce, but for me, I prefer these days to gaze into the future and 22 becomes highly significant. Consult the Tarot and you find traditional Tarot decks have 22 cards with allegorical subjects.

These serve as trump cards in the game. Occult Tarot decks usually have 22 similar cards which are called Major Arcana by fortune-tellers. Occultists have related this number to the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet and the 22 paths in the Kabbalistic Tree of Life. This could be very significant! (Memo to self: I must get myself down to the closest fortune teller as soon as possible.)

Pattaya Mail is well known for its extensive coverage of sport in Pattaya and 22 is very significant when you remember that 22 is the number of players on the field in a football (soccer) match, and also the number of players on the field at any one time in an American football match. And the length of a cricket pitch is 22 yards.

Pattaya Mail is also known for the Dining Out columns penned by Miss Terry Diner and she advises that when dividing a pizza with just six line segments, the maximum number of pieces that can be so created is 22. Forget the loaves and fishes, you can get 22 slices from your pizza on your next BBQ.

In fact, 22 seems to be a very important milestone, being a pentagonal number and a centered heptagonal number. This means that the sum of the totient function for the first eight integers is 22. Thus 22 is a Perrin number, preceded in the sequence by 10, 12, 17. And please ask your local mathematician to explain this, not me!

Yes, 22 is really an important factor in all our lives and will be for all at the Pattaya Mail for the next 12 months.

And two little ducks? The call in the game of Bingo to denote the number 22. I’m done writing this item. Bingo!