things aren't always as they seem

Birds of North America

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Birds of North America, life histories of more than 930 species. It’s a Smithsonian book. It has 1,008 pages.


I say “maybe” because one day when I looked up owls — a barred owl, for example, on page 505, according to the index — I discovered that there was no page 505. The page numbers go from 496 (Great Horned Owl) to page 529 (Fork-Tailed Swift). Huh.

Later on, while I am perusing the book, I find that page 881 (the American Tree Sparrow) comes after page 976 (Hoary Redpoll). Actually, 881 is in there twice, the first time just after page 880 (Five-Striped Sparrow) and then again after 976. Starting with the second page 881, the book continues until page 912 (Lapland Longspur) then jumps to page 977 (Eurasian Siskin). The American Tree Sparrow is on both pages 881, so at least the book is consistent as to which bird is on which page (if you can find the page).

Is this the “new math” they were talking about, decades ago?

I don’t know how many pages this book has. I’m not going to count them. To be accurate, I will say that the last page in the book has page number 1,008.

Postaday2011 #47


Author: Tresha Barger

Writer (blogs, humor, short stories, poetry) and artist (miniature art quilts, watercolor paintings, soft sculpture dolls)

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