You may ask yourself (quite rightly) what this post’s about. What have I, an illustrator and graphic designer in the North East of England, got in common with the renowned fictional Belgian detective?
It’s NOT that I have got to have a tisane at 11 o’clock every morning, It’s not that I live in Whitehaven Mansions. I don’t have a black cane topped with a beautiful silver swan (sadly) and it’s not that I have a remarkably efficient secretary called Miss Lemon.
But I DO…have the same fetish, as Poirot does, for same-digit numbers. I was watching the episode (last night) – ‘The Lost Mine’ when Poirot visits the bank to sort out a problem. Finding that he is overdrawn, he states to the cashier that it is a point of principle that he always keeps his balance at four hundred and forty-four pounds, four shillings and four pence. A point of principle! I was amazed and astounded the first time that I heard this, as I have a similar fetish for symmetry and in Poirot’s words “order and method”; particularly when it comes to numbers. My favourite numbers all contain the same digit, such as 11, 22, 33 etc and my personal favourite 88.
Whatever Hercule has got stirring around in those ‘little grey cells’ concerning same-digit numbers, I am under the same persuasion too. Perhaps I should have turned my hand to crime detection. I might have been the next Hercule Poirot or Sherlock Holmes (I am almost tempted to include Miss Marple too!).
Perhaps my unseen affinity with Monsieur Poirot allowed me to be the delighted winner of the signed David Suchet book ‘Poirot and Me’ competition that I entered last year (with little hope of winning).
So, I still query this number fascination and leave you with the query as Mr Poirot himself would utter, “c’est quoi mon ami?“.