A Target of Numbers

I remember the "paint by numbers" kits were located in the center aisle of one of the Woolworth's stores where my mom shopped. Clearly it was bullseye-marketing on the part of the store manager. After my constant nagging, finally one day my mom bought me one of those paint-by-number kits. I was so thrilled at the purchase. Although I loved it as a child, today, looking back, in my opinion, I think they stifle creativity in children instead of enhancing it. The numbers made it so matter-of-fact, #3 paint, dark brown, for the tree bark, #8 paint, green, for the leaves, and #12 paint, blue, for the sky. But wonder if a kid wants to paint the tree bark orange, leaves purple, or the sky pink? What's so wrong with changing the color numbers?! Don't block the imagination with numbers!

On the other hand, numbers do stand out in literary headlines. Numbers can make or break a story. Next time at the grocery, check the tabloids. How many times do headlines begin with numbers? For instance, would you be inclined to read an article "5 Ideas for a Better World" or "Let's Make a Better World"? The number 5 seems to grab the attention. There are many examples, "8 Weight Loss Tips to Start the New Year", "10 Best-Dressed Celebrities at the Oscars", "25 Affordable Romantic Trips", "50 Shades of Grey"...well, scratch this one, even though this writer has not seen the movie or read the book, I've heard the book is poorly written, the stars of the movie were embarrassed by their movie roles, and some people, especially women, are just plain insulted by the book and movie hype! Unfortunately, this hype worked! This title sold a slew of books!

But why not "50 Shades of Gratitude"? No, I'm not a prude, just a realist. Down-deep inside, most people want real, positive life applications, not wasted words from a trashy novel or movie! Sadly since most of the world's view of this book/movie is a good one, my next article in this blog will be "5 Ideas for a Better World"! It might not be a best-seller, but it's one that's gotta be told!

Thought for the Day:  Target numbers that make the article, not break it!


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