When I was at University many many moons ago the Students Union (or Guild of Undergraduates as it was known at this particular establishment) gave grants of £50 for bona-fide student societies. Now since this was at a time when the grant for the year was only £360, an extra £50 was not to be sniffed at. But how to take advantage of it?
The answer came in a flash – and the Palindromic Date Society, dedicated to drinking beer whenever the date was palindromic, was born. This year would be a good one to be in the society with today, 11/1/11, being the first opportunity to celebrate. Of course, the real focus will be on remembrance day this year when we get to the holy grail of palindromic dates, 11/11/11.
For those interested in numerical curiosities, this year – 2011 – is a prime number. That is not unusual in itself, 2003 was prime and so will 2017 be.
What makes 2011 so unusual is that it is the sum of a prime number (11) of consecutive prime numbers!
2011 = 157 + 163 + 167 + 173 + 179 + 181 + 191 + 193 + 197 + 199 + 211
and just to compound it, it’s also the sum of a different prime number (3) of consecutive primes: 2011 = 661 + 673 + 677.
Make the most of it, the next year that is (a) prime and (b) the sum of a prime number of consecutive primes doesn’t arrive for another 70 years. 2081 = 401 + 409 + 419 + 421 + 431