The numbers were after me again.
73. 37. 1137. 317. 1703. They would vary in this manner, as if to mock me, but the underlying phenomenon always shone through. And shine it did, for on that morning when I went to the store, the numbers were repeating like crazy, appearing everywhere I looked, whether I wanted to see them or not.
Even the grocery store wasn't beyond their reach.
In the checkout line, I stayed poker-faced when the man in front of me rung up a total of $31.17, as announced by the cashier. Yet, despite everything, there was still a voice of dissent in my head: Just a coincidence. If not, then shouldn't your total be seventy-three-something, too?
It came my turn. I handed over my few purchases. The cashier rung them up -- and the total avoided 73 in all forms. I was neither pleased nor displeased. My total was $17.27, as it were. I produced a twenty, and took up my bag.
Then the cashier gave me my change, coins first. "Seventy-three cents," she said, before silently handing over two dollar bills.
I held my laughter until the parking lot.