Friday, May 17, 2024

The 96, the 48, and the white bull

In his May 15 post "Alpha and Omega, and the 144 or gross," William Wright writes that in Tolkien's writings there were originally 144 elves who were invited to Aman. Two-thirds (called the Eldar) accepted the invitation, while one-third (called the Avari) declined. (As the Babylon Bee recently complained, "every time a group of elves does something they get a new name!") Two-thirds of 144 is 96, a number which William goes on to discuss extensively. He doesn't mention the number 48, but that's how many Avari there would have been.

The number 48 is potentially interesting because of the recent emphasis on the word buy. ("'Come buy, come buy,' was still their cry.") In Simple English Gematria (S:E:G:) -- where you add up the value of a word by counting A as 1, B as 2, and so on -- we get these interesting equations:
  • buy = 2 + 21 + 25 = 48
  • sell = 19 + 5 + 12 + 12 = 48
  • trade = 20 + 18 + 1 + 4 + 5 = 48
I was thinking about this as I ate my lunch today. After lunch, I went to the place where I had parked my motorcycle, only to find that a big white SUV had parked me in. Motorcycles are maneuverable, and I was able to wriggle my way out, but it took some time and was annoying.

The thought popped into my head, "Parking you in was a good way to make sure you notice this particular car." Then I realized that I hadn't really processed the car at all beyond "white SUV," so I turned and looked at it:

I noticed the number 96 first and then the word bull. (The numeral 1 looks like a lowercase l -- so if you wanted to write "BULL 96" in ABC-1234 format, this is how you'd do it.) The moon Europa has been in the sync-stream of late, and what is the Europa of mythology best known for? Being carried away by a big white bull:

This event is commonly known as the Rape of Europa. Speaking of rape, after discovering the novella Europa Affair (about the moon, not the mythical figure), I checked its Amazon page. The top review gave it one star, citing "violence against women":

For William Wright, Europa has to do with Númenor, while the number 96 has reference to elves, so I'm not sure what to make of seeing them together on that SUV, but I note it for future reference.

Note added (May 18):

The YouTube algorithm served up this video, a commentary on the symbolism of Under the Silver Lake, a 2018 movie I'd never heard of:

In Under the Silver Lake, there's a scene with a white Volkswagen Rabbit, and the video emphasizes that this is a white rabbit, as in Alice or The Matrix:

Sam's whole journey begins after Sarah disappears by trying to find her following three girls literally driving around in a white Rabbit -- you know, a redhead, a blonde, and a brunette that drive a white convertible Rabbit, so he's following three women in a white Rabbit. He's following a white Rabbit.

This is conceptually very similar to my post above, where a white SUV with bull on its license plate represents the white bull of Greek myth.

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