Background: One of my readers and correspondents has been experiencing a lot of synchronicities lately related to sequences of fives, and particularly 555.
On the morning of May 11, it occurred to me that the next day would be May 12, and that 5/12 seemed somehow mathematically significant. I couldn't figure out how, though; all that came to mind was that a dodecahedron is made up of 12 pentagons. I dismissed the matter from my mind.
That afternoon, I received a shipment of books for my school, and the invoice was for $3718. I immediately thought, "Hey, it's the number of the beast!" -- because 37 × 18 = 666. Then I realized that if I added instead of multiplying, 37 + 18 = 55. No sooner had I noticed this, and thought of my correspondent and his sequences of fives, than the phone number on the invoice caught my eye. It contained the string 555! As everyone knows, it is de rigueur to use 555 in fake phone numbers, but here it was in a real one!
I went about the rest of my day, and while I was on the way home, I thought about how I ought to email so-and-so and tell him about the fives. At the exact moment I thought this, I noticed an LED sign that said "5月5日到5月20日" -- meaning "from May 5 to May 20," and including three consecutive fives. Shortly after that, I passed another sign that had "55 50" on it (the prices of two different products, with the products' names written vertically above the numbers). And then I passed something I pass every day but had never particularly noticed before: the San Wu Rubber Company -- San Wu (三五) being Chinese for "three five."
Having noticed so many triple-fives in such a short span of time, I naturally thought of 5³, which is 125 -- and then I finally realized the mathematical significance of the next day's date. The date can be written either as 5/12 or 12/5 -- and both 512 and 125 are cubes. May 12 and its counterpart, December 5, are the only dates to have this property. The number 512 has the additional distinction of being (2³)³, the first (not counting the trivial cases of 0 and 1) cube-of-a-cube. Looking back at the San Wu logo, doesn't it suggest 888 as well as 𠄡𠄡𠄡? This is another link between 5³ = 125 and 8³ = 512.
So the numbers 5 and 12 can be combined in two different ways to make a cube. And how about the most obvious way of "combining" them? Well, 5 + 12 = 17 -- and, as anyone at all in touch with the world of conspiracy theories can tell you, the 17th letter of the alphabet is Q. (When Trump gave his Jan. 20 farewell speech with 17 American flags behind him, for example, this was seen as a reference to Q.)
I never really followed the whole "Q" thing, but the synchronicity fairies did occasionally take an interest. Back on January 13, I wrote a sync post about Q*bert, the video-game character whose name was originally going to be spelled "Cubert," a combination of "cubes" and "Hubert." So that's another link between cubes (plural) and the letter Q. In that post, I noted a Babylon Bee article that juxtaposed Q and Bert, which led me to the old "Bert is evil" meme and to the Scott Adams character "Catbert the evil HR director." Looking back at that post now, I see that two of the images I posted contain references to 5-and-12.