Not only is this Veterans Day, but it's an extra-special one. There can't be another one like it for a hundred years. That's because today's date--11/11/11--is a numeric palindrome. It reads the same from right to left as it does from left to right. In fact, if you use a sans serif font (one without all those little pointy things at the ends of the letters), this one even reads the same upside-down. Observe:
Upside-up: l l / l l / l l
Upside-down: l l / l l / l l
(Okay, so I fudged a bit by also using a lower-case letter L for a 1. Just pretend this is M's old manual typewriter.)
When you have a chance, you should find out (if you don't already know) why the number 11 is so important to Veterans Day--and an earlier version called Armistice Day. Then for fun of a whole different kind, check out why the number is also important for lots of numeric palindromes, not just today's date.
(Here's an example: 111,111 x 111,111 = 12,345,654,321.)
Final item: M likes to start his day by trying to work the Celebrity Cipher. This is a substitution-code puzzle by Luis Campos that appears in our local newspaper. Since today's cipher was a great one for Veterans Day, we thought we'd share it with you. See if you can figure it out:
"KFLY SBKLHS GLTT UZWBLS KFZ TBSX HN KFX NUZZ HSTO YH THSJ BY LK LY KFZ FHWZ HN KFZ IUBEZ."
- ZTWZU XBELY