27 February, 2013

Counting Sheep

I need to sleep better. At 4:00 am, I found myself awake and marveling at my use of a number system that didn't really have any numbers in it. Eschewing specificity, I guess. I remember in high school I once calculated all the conversions for a fortnight-stone-furlong system; I mention it only to indicate that this is an old obsession for me. I like to count, but I can't hold a candle to Monk or the Rainman.

a tad - fewer than one.

a - one, but not necessarily the only one. Just the one you're talking about.

the - one, and the only one.

pair - two, always, even when it's quite a pair. Could be a brace if you wanted to show off.

couple - usually two, but not as specific as a pair.

few - three to six or so.

several - seven to thirteen (as in "these several states").

about a dozen - eleven to fifteen.

a few dozen- twenty to forty.

bunches - more than forty.

a ton - a whole lot of bunches.

oceans - mega-tons.

bazillion - untold numbers defying imagination.