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Numbers Request Station

A numbers station you can contact to have the numbers you want read out
  [vote for,

As far as I can tell, numbers stations tend to be random within the range of integers they broadcast. Instead of this, they could be contacted with requests to broadcast a specific number at a specific time and date, or a sequence, pseudorandom or otherwise, such as the Fibonacci sequence from 55 to 196418 in reverse, or from a formula submitted to the station. Useful as a different kind of anniversary or birthday present or just if you want to hear a specific number or series of numbers. It would also be useful for processing data sets and the like. Children could ring it up and have it do their maths homework, or you could request sequences from the Cold War and feel nostalgic. There could also be a Top 40 and possibly a reviews programme.
nineteenthly, Apr 03 2016


       I always assumed they were just the results of some lottery with very, very poor odds.   

       Which gives me an idea.
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 03 2016

       Which is the best number of cups of coffee to have?
xenzag, Apr 03 2016

       "One...Yarrr! Two...Shiver me timbers! Three...Yo ho ho! Four...Arrghh! Five...Hoist the mains'l! Six...Piece of Eight!"   

       Pirate Numbers Station
zen_tom, Apr 04 2016

       Numbers stations almost certainly broadcasts coded messages. If you knew how to decode them – likely with a one-time pad – you could.   

       There’s nothing to stop any radio operator from speaking lists of numbers, so if you have a HAM license, or can find someone who does, you can send whatever coded or even nonsense messages you want. It would be interesting to see if Homeland Security would get alarmed, track down your transmitter, and pay you a visit – if you find that sort of interaction “interesting”.
CraigD, Apr 04 2016

       Lists of numbers would not seem to have any particular charm. They can be cold, the numbers, one after the other, in no obvious order. One would not think that such a list, read aloud, would be something to retain the attention. Especially such a limited set - there are a lot of numbers – an infinity of numbers - but this particular list used only those under 100, no fractions and none less than 2. He knew because they had in fact retained his attention. He had listened carefully. Partly this was because he had always been fond of numbers, but mostly it was because the reader had such an amazing voice. When she said “nineteen” it was as though she were confiding a secret to him. “Fifty-five” was a like a joke, especially the time it had come up three times in a row. On the third repetition he thought by her voice that she could tell how ridiculous it was, and he laughed out loud in the privacy of his room. “Two” seemed serious. Down to just two. He listened for hours, the numbers assorting themselves in his head, taking their place beside the new ones as she escorted them through the radio. The cool order of numbers against the rich warmth of her voice. She was a person that you would want to speak to you and she did speak to him, with her numbers. A beautiful person. He could imagine the smell of her perfume, the feel of her hair. She never laughed but he knew that her laugh would be a wonder to hear. He could almost hear the giggle in her voice when she said “Ninety-nine” just like that crazy song. He fell in love.   

       He listened and listened. Sometimes it seemed that certain numbers were of more import. Were they directed at him personally? He was not mad, and he knew with his mind that they could not be; that there was no way she could know he was listening. But in his heart he wanted them to be his. A special gift from her. He began keeping track of them – just those important ones. His landlady had mentioned the lottery before and after thinking long on the matter, he decided to give her the money so that she might play the special numbers on his behalf.   

       The nineteenth play won. It was a very big number.   

       And so he had to find her. He had considered it before, but only briefly – what stories could he share with such a beautiful voice? His own voice was only serviceable, and his life had not been an eventful one. It occurred to him that the idea of reading numbers back to her was funny - like that Monty Python from the television - and maybe could serve as an introduction? He had the perfect numbers for it – the ones from #19, and now he also had a story to share that came with them.   

       Finding her was difficult. It was not something one could just look up. Without prior experience in such matters he went about it somewhat ham-handedly at first. He did, though, have recordings of her voice and the numbers, and there were people who took an interest in such things. Also, he perceived that some of these might feel some pity for him and his quest. He tried to be businesslike, but probably his face gave him away when he played the recordings. The radio station itself was secret, but there was a person who knew a person, and that person knew where the numbers had come from originally, and a person in the place where they had come from remembered a person who had recorded them. That person remembered her name.   

       She lived in the city. Getting there was frightening and required all of his determination. He took a train, and then from the station a cab to the hotel where he had reserved a room. In the train station had been a woman selling flowers with a wonderful scent and he had bought one, trimming the end with his penknife and putting it in a glass of water to keep the night. That night he played his favorite recording of numbers. It sounded like she had a cold but not enough to skip work. He could imagine her, perhaps a little embarrassed at her stuffy nose, perhaps clearing her throat between the numbers, her voice husky and charming.   

       The cab brought him to her apartment, and after a few false starts he found the door and rang, flower in hand. When she answered he smiled and spoke. “Twelve. Fourteen. Twenty-two”. The ridiculousness of it made him smile more broadly. “Thirty-two. Thirty nine. Forty-seven!” Then he bowed.   

       Her laugh was a wonder and his heart jumped in his chest. “Oh, my numbers!” she laughed. “You’ve been listening? I wondered if they still played them!” Her musical voice was better even than he remembered. He could tell that she got the joke.   

       “Yes they do,” he told her, inclining his head. “They are a great comfort to me, your numbers. They come in handy too.” He held out his flower and felt it taken from his hand. “And you are just as beautiful as you sound on the radio.”   

       “Oh my,” she said in embarrassment. “That was a very long time ago that I recorded those numbers. Back during the war. I am afraid my beautiful days are long past.” There was a pause and he knew she was looking more closely at him. “But maybe you didn’t know that.” She paused again, and he felt her soft skin as she took his hand. “Would you like to come in? I just put the tea on.”   

       Her perfume was exactly as he had imagined it.
bungston, Apr 05 2016

       Nicely done, [bungston]. I guessed she would be old, and the numbers an old thing from her past, but his twist I didn't get until "..felt it taken...". Have you left any other stories hidden among the comments (other than the awesomeness in "Spinal Cord Signal Intercept Passthrough")?
neutrinos_shadow, Apr 05 2016

       Thanks, neutrino. This story came to me so completely when I read nineteenthly's post that I worry I have already read it somewhere. Just like a mad scheme, once these stories arrive I have to write them down before anything else can get done.
bungston, Apr 05 2016

       That's just brilliant!
nineteenthly, Apr 06 2016


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