Example: [Collected via e-mail, January 2011]
This year we will experience 4 unusual dates....
Origins: Since the current year (2011) ends in the digits '11,' and we commonly express dates by writing only the last two digits of the year and excluding the century indicator, some days falling in the 1st and
The second half of this item, that the last two digits of the year you were born in added to your age will equal 111, is mundane and has no real connection to the fact that some of this year's dates can be expressed as a string of ones.
This "trick" is basic math: Your year of birth added to your age will obviously equal the current year, since that's the definition of how we reckon age. For example:
1952 + 59 = 2011
1970 + 41 = 2011
1989 + 22 = 2011
The only catch is that since we're omitting the first two digits of our birth years in this calculation (the '19' that indicates the century of the 1900s), our answers will be 1900 less than if we used the full year:
This "trick" also has a limited applicability that depends upon the participant's having been born between 1900 and 1999. Anyone born in 1899 or earlier will get an answer of 211 instead of 111; anyone born in 2000 or later will get an answer of 11 instead of 111.
Last updated: 26 January 2011