Have you ever considered how difficult it might be to have someone tell you their phone number in a format other than the typical xxx-xxx-xxxx sequence? Instead of hearing 984-873-3548 someone might tell you 984-87-335-48. You would hear 3 numbers, then 2, followed by 3 and then another 2. Or someone might break it up more and say 98-48-73-35-48. In Playa del Carmen, I am frequently told phone numbers in a wide range of formats, and have consequently had a difficult time adjusting.
As an American I'm used to hearing phone numbers in a predetermined arrangement of 3-3-4. Thinking logically the area code is 3 digits, then the city code is another 3, which leaves the last 4 of the number. The American format makes sense: it's put together correctly. The varying number arrangements in Mexico aren't logical at all. I've pondered why anyone would format a phone number differently. Perhaps the pattern of 3-2-2-3 is easier to remember than 3-3-4. Maybe groups of two and three digit numbers are easier to remember than groups of 3 and 4. That is really the only logical explanation I can come up with.
It is even difficult to recite phone numbers from memory in any other arranagement other than 3-3-4. As a test, try repeating your number from memory in a sequence of 3-2-3-2 or even 2-2-2-2-2. I have even heard a phone number as 2-3-1-2-2. Have someone tell you their number in a foreign sequence and see if your brain has trouble processing it. My ears and brain experience a disconnect in terms of what I expect to hear and what is actually being told to me.
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Please enjoy these photos taken the other night at a friend's birthday party held at a local pool hall, where we feasted on pizza, beer and cake!