In physics, the number 137 is considered somewhat of a mystery. I can't pretend to understand exactly what it means to physicists but it's been described by physicist R. P. Feynman as "one of the greatest damn mysteries of physics: a magic number that comes to us with no understanding by man. You might say the 'hand of God' wrote that number, and we don't know how He pushed his pencil."
So I won't begin to describe how this number mystifies scientists, mostly because I wouldn't have a clue what I was saying, and I wouldn't want to scare any readers into some college physics phlashback for fear they might be tested on it or something.
I can relate, however, that early 20th Century theoretical physicist Wolfgang Pauli, when he became ill with cancer in 1958, was admitted to the hospital and assigned room 137. The significance of that wasn't lost on Pauli.
Pauli had spent much of his career preoccupied with the significance of 137. When assigned the hospital room with that number, Pauli feared the worst. His fears were realized. Pauli died in room 137.
So what prompted me to write on this today? Well, coincidentally, 137 is the body count in Iraq today. And nobody here in America knows the significance of that number either. But it's nice, as a common American lay person, to share in the mystery of a number that even the best scientific minds know is special, but don't know why.
(Dada footnote: At the time of writing this, astrophysists estimate of the age of the known universe, according to the best available data as returned by the Hubble space telescope is (ready?) -- 13.7 billion years. That means, unless refined, we are once more confronted with that "137" number and that all of us were born at the time the Universe was 13.7 billion years old and will die when the Universe is still 13.7 billion years old! Is it possible someone's trying to tell us something?)