I count things

Whenever I write about odd things I do someone chimes in and says “Hey, me too!” which I find very comforting. I’m not so weird after all – Yay!

I’m a counter. I’m a calculator – as in – determine the amount or number of something mathematically. 

My husband and I take 2 prescription medications each and a number of supplements. I have those pill organizer where you can dole out a weeks worth of pills at a time. Since our prescriptions must be taken morning and night I have two each of the pill organizers – morning and night. My husband’s prescriptions require 2 pills, twice a day. Therefore I am dispensing 7 or 14 pills at a time in each organizer. 

There are 7 boxes in the organizer, all I have to do is drop the required doses in each little box, I don’t need to count. But I do – sometimes silently in my head, sometimes out loud. I dump a bunch of pills in my hand and then count out – One, two, three, four, five, six, seven. The 2-pill doses get counted – two, four, six, eight, ten, twelve, fourteen as I drop 2 of the pills in each box.  This counting is NOT necessary. Just fill each little box with the proper dose, right? One pill or two. And yet, I count.

Then there is my thing about dates. Oy! If I’m reading anything, book, newspaper article – anything – and a date is given I store that. Say it’s a DOB. Then later on I read that the person did something at age 31, I automatically pull up the DOB from memory, add 31 years and get a new date which I then store in my memory for use later, say when the story then states this person died 37 years after that. Ok, now I have the birth year, the 31st year, and then I add the 37 years and Bingo, I get the year the person died. 

I do this all the time with dates. I’m always putting them in some sort of perspective. If you say “Oh that happened back in ’37” I immediately deduct 1937 from the current year to get however many years have passed. There is no need for this (most of the time). But I can’t help myself. I’ve never even tried to NOT do this. I can carry this whole date thing throughout a entire book. 

I would give you more example but it gets confusing, doesn’t it? This past week in a newspaper column dates and ages and time spans were sprinkled throughout and when I did my mental calculations as I read along they didn’t add it up. That disturbed me. I almost sent in a correction “No, given those dates that person only lived there for 20 years, not 30.” I didn’t but it still is playing in my mind leading to this post. 

I love digital clocks because then I can do precise calculations – it’s now 9:13 and this has to cook for 19 minutes so it will be done at 9:32.  I’m not all that good with telling time using the 24-hour clock so if time is referenced that way of course I have to re-calculate it to 12-hour clock time but I think everyone does that, so not an odd habit. 

If I’m slicing something, and it doesn’t matter in the least how many slices there are, I still count how many slices I make. Why? I’m just taking a big piece and making it smaller – the number doesn’t matter. If I have two big pieces, after I cut up the first one, I will then cut the second one into the same amount of pieces as the first – EVEN THO IT DOESN’T MATTER. 

Am I crazy, or do any of you do this automatic counting thing too?

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