It’s a long one….
While reading an article about a survivor of the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, I had one of those moments where a few simple words took my thoughts to a whole other realm.
I’m one of those folks where a single thought conjures up a seemingly unrelated topic from time to time and where simple tasks create other tasks. For instance, doing the dishes can often take me on a great adventure. If time permits, it may go something like this….Once the dishes are done, a simple look around starts a little tidying-up of the countertops. Then I might as well sort through the cupboard with all of the plastic containers – just match-up a few lids, you know. Next thing you know the “junk drawer” is torn apart and left on the kitchen floor, because I found the missing puzzle piece to the Christmas puzzle that’s in a tub out in the garage. On the way to the garage, I get side-tracked while walking through the living room by someone’s dirty socks left on the floor. Better start some laundry. Might as well fold a load too. Shoot, where did I put that puzzle piece? You see where this is going….I wish I would have written the children’s book If You Give a Mouse a Cookie.
So….back to the article. In this article, a survivor describes how, when the bomb detonated, she fell three floors, and landed lodged between concrete slabs. She spends several hours buried alive, but is eventually rescued after a rescue team “counted to three” and pulled her out. That was it….you may have missed it….”counted to three”. That was the phrase that sent my thoughts a flutter. My first thought was, “Are you kidding?! They counted to three?!” Just get her out! Forget about the universal “ready-set-go” of “counting to three”. And then it started – “Why three?” Hmmm…..
Think about it, counting to three is pretty powerful in many ways. When I was a kid, it was pretty terrifying to hear “One –“, because we knew we only had until “Three” to shape-up! When I started school, I heard there were some moms that threw in the occasional “two and a half”. The lucky boogers! Imagine the luck! A fraction thrown in for extra time! Thankfully, my own kids are semi-terrified of hearing me say “I’m counting to three”, but admittedly I throw in a few more fractions from time to time…it’s in my nature to bombard them with math.
After thinking about “counting to three”, my brain then led me to other threes of significance. We often count to three to start a race; there’s three strikes in baseball; a young Michael Jackson sang about 1-2-3 in one of my favorite songs; many games require three of a kind to win. I’m sure there’s more, but, as you now know, my brain doesn’t like to stay on a topic for long.
So, my next thought, of course, was – why three?! Why do we count to three? Who started it? Why 3? Why not 2, 4, 5, or 10? Now, at this point, I could have done a little research, but I didn’t have the time, and besides my brain landed on a reason of its own:
Someone, somewhere recognized that three was significant because he or she was a Christian who knew the power of three in The Trinity and that Jesus rose on the third day. Now, maybe there’s another reason, but I really kind of like mine. So much so, that my favorite number, 6, may get cut in half from here on and counting to three will forever have a new meaning.
Ahhh…the randomness of my thoughts. Have a good one!