A person is counting something - be it exercise reps, money, items, etc. At first their counting is honest, but then said person intentionally jumps their count.
This can happen for several reasons: The person is tired of counting or doing something repeatedly (especially for exercise reps), or he/she is trying to impress someone nearby, or conversely, he/she is trying to deceive his friend/higher-up (especially with money count).
Contrast Losing Count.
There's a MAD Magazine comic featuring two guys at the gym, one of whom is counting "..105, 106, 107..". The other says "You must have awesome strength to do that many reps." "It's mind over matter. Whenever a pretty girl walks by, I start counting at 100".
Used twice in Calvin and Hobbes. In one strip he's doing push-ups and his counting is well in the hundreds, because he claims exercise is more rewarding if you count what it feels like. In another he's jump-roping, and is counting in the millions because higher numbers give him more time to jump over the rope.
A variant from the Sgt Bilko movie, during a surprise inspection by Major Thorn, the title character has to tell one of his out-of-shape men to "drop and give me twenty". While the Major is distracted by something else, Bilko mercifully says "And 20", even though the private only managed about one and a half pushups.
Monsters Versus Aliens: The Missing Link is lifting weights when Susan walks by. "Seven, eight, nine hundred ninety-nine, one thousand."
A variant in an episode of Red Dwarf, when Rimmer is trying to dictate an essay for a practice astronomy exam question, "What does the red spectrum tell us about quasars?" - although it's clear that he has no idea what a red spectrum or a quasar is. Lister enters the room and Rimmer immediately skips to "...in conclusion, this comprehensively answers the question of what the red spectrum tells us about quasars."
In the stage adaptation of 'Allo 'Allo!, a scene begins with Herr Flick doing push-ups; when his love interest Helga enters, he adds a thousand to his count.
Don Draper does this by the book in a Season 1 episode of Mad Men. He's doing push-ups in his bedroom, counting under his breath, and when his wife enters the room he abruptly goes from single digits to somewhere in the nineties.
As another example, the song Heroes by Sunday Driver has this directly in the lyrics: "Now I better stay home, counting brain cells. One, two, skip a few. Put them up for resale."
Israeli playwright Khanokh Levin once wrote a skit satirising the peace talks between Israel and Egypt, showing the leaders of both sides in an ‘introductory round’, pondering meaningfully before giving a slightly higher number in an apparently meaningless count, making the mediator quickly lose his patience. When both of them have to leave for some time and leave him to continue in their place, he uses their absence to speed up the counting until he ‘reaches’ 2000 and declares the round over.
In the Animaniacs episode, "Chalkboard Bungle", Miss Flamiel asks Yakko to count to 100. Yakko counts to two before skipping to 99. When Miss Flamiel tells him to give her all the numbers, Yakko reminds her the cartoon's only six minutes long, implying that he has the ability to count all the numbers, just not the time to do so.
Lobo: Okay on the count of 10, I'm gonna slag this dump (paraphrased)
Lobo: Ooooone, TEN!
[Lobo pulls out a big gun, scene cuts to outside the bar with blasts of light creating holes in its structure from the inside]
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