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Significant Digits For Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news.


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2 members

After the death of Sister Frances Carr on Monday, there are only two members of the religious society known as the Shakers. The group — officially the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearance — preaches celibacy and stopped adopting orphans some time ago, hence its membership drought. [The Guardian]


-4 percent

College football game attendance is down 4 percent on average since 2009 at the 130 Football Bowl Subdivision schools. That’s eating into the lucrative business of college football. [Bloomberg]


19 states

It is now 2017, which means a bunch of people got government-mandated raises as 19 states and 21 local jurisdictions increased their minimum wage. Lots of people have all sorts of economics-informed ideas about what will happen now — as is their wont, economists disagree on the specifics — so it’s a great real-life experiment for that crowd. [FiveThirtyEight]


4,200 “gifts”

I have no idea if it’s a protest, or a celebration, or just a cannabis-induced moment of inspiration, but the DC Cannabis Coalition is giving out 4,200 free joints at Dupont Circle in Washington on Inauguration Day, Jan. 20. It’s legal to give away but not to sell marijuana in Washington, hence the great price. Then 4 minutes and 20 seconds into the incoming president’s speech — you know, the weed number — the 4,200 recipients are encouraged to spark up. Things are changing in America, so it provides a brief moment of consistency when potheads pull weird attention-seeking stunts regardless of who’s in office, you know? [WUSA 9]


554 million tacos

Jack in the Box, a fast-food chain, sells a ridiculous number of tacos that — based on the testimonials of people interviewed by The Wall Street Journal — are somewhere between gross and immensely addictive. That’s about as many Big Macs as McDonalds says it moved in the U.S. in 2007. [The Wall Street Journal]


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Walt Hickey is FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer.

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