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Thread: Trivial coincidences from everyday life.

  1. #1
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    Smile Trivial coincidences from everyday life.

    Today: Out shopping, stop at a favorite store. Pull into the lot, select a parking space. I'm just about to shut car's engine off when a woman pulls into the parking space directly ahead of me. So we arrived at the same time.

    Roughly 40 minutes later I'm done shopping (in an adjoining store to the first), deep in thought, in my car about to turn it on and leave...when I hear an engine directly across from me start.

    It's that woman, starting her car and leaving at the same time I was.

    We arrived and left at the same time.

    You?
    Dip me in ink and toss me to the Poets.

  2. #2
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    My 15 year old and I have a habit of replying to conversations with the exact same sentences, putting the exact same emphasis in the exact same place. It's getting a bit scary. Is a 15 year old thinking like a 35 year old or is a 35 year old thinking like a 15 year old?

  3. #3
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    I'd say it's two people who around each other a great deal of the time getting used to each other's thought and speech patterns. Twins are especially noted for doing that.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

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    Back in October: I spent a very long time looking up Bob Herbert's article "The Best of America", having forgotten the author, the title, and the name of the book I saw it published in. I finally found it, and re-read it. A few days later, it ws announced that Bob Herbert would be giving a lecture at my university. (I didn't get to go, though, because I was busy.)

    Last Monday: I was listening to the radio on a long car trip and heard a song start up. I thought it was Jewel's "Hands", but it turned out to be some other song. I was disappointed, because I like that song and I thought about how I hadn't heard it on the radio in a while. About an hour later, the station played "Hands".

    Saturday: I was walking to the campus bookstore to see if some of my textbooks had come in yet (they hadn't), and I thought about the new book about George Mallory that I'd seen a capsule review of in Newsweek and how much I wanted to read it. When I got into the bookstore, that very book was on the "New Books" table. (It was too expensive for me to buy, though.)
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

  5. #5
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    About 18 years ago, I worked in a store and was forever bumping into people I knew.

    One day, I noticed a young woman out the corner of my eye and mistook her for my ex-girlfriend. Before I could turn she said my name. I looked up and said "Jen! How are you?" Then there was a very long pause.

    I did not know that woman and it was obvious she didn't know me. But we both mistook each other for someone else with the same name. It was really a strange feeling.

    We stood there staring at each other for about sixty seconds before we both started in with the "sorry, I thought you were someone else" excuses. That caused another long pause.

    I finally said "Ex?" and she answered "Yes." That caused another thoughtful pause. I gave her my phone number.

    She never called, but it makes a great story.
    Solfe

  6. #6
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    About 25 years ago I was Christmas shopping mall and decided to buy a sweater for my uncle. As the cashier was folding it to put it into the bag, I noticed the pattern on the sweater and realized that it was definitely a woman's sweater. I realized that I could not possibly give him this sweater, and I was a little embarrased to have to cancel the sale because I thought it was a man's sweater. Just then, there was a power failure and the cash register stopped working. The saleslady apologized profusely and explained that she couldn't complete the sale until the power came back on. She told me she would hold the sweater and I could come back later after the power was restored. I said "OK", left the store and never returned.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfribrg View Post
    About 25 years ago I was Christmas shopping mall and decided to buy a sweater for my uncle. As the cashier was folding it to put it into the bag, I noticed the pattern on the sweater and realized that it was definitely a woman's sweater. I realized that I could not possibly give him this sweater, and I was a little embarrased to have to cancel the sale because I thought it was a man's sweater. Just then, there was a power failure and the cash register stopped working. The saleslady apologized profusely and explained that she couldn't complete the sale until the power came back on. She told me she would hold the sweater and I could come back later after the power was restored. I said "OK", left the store and never returned.
    Lol!!! Saved by the power failure!

  8. #8
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    I was out and about doing errands a couple of weekends ago and at one point, I got back into my truck and...ahem...broke wind (a side effect of medication, honest!). Just as I did so, a commercial came on the radio for a local Mexican restaurant, that opened with the line, "What is that wonderful aroma?" If that weren't conincidence enough, it just so happened that I'd had Mexican the night before...although, not from that restaurant.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    I was out and about doing errands a couple of weekends ago and at one point, I got back into my truck and...ahem...broke wind (a side effect of medication, honest!). Just as I did so, a commercial came on the radio for a local Mexican restaurant, that opened with the line, "What is that wonderful aroma?" If that weren't conincidence enough, it just so happened that I'd had Mexican the night before...although, not from that restaurant.
    Lol!! And that's the last thing you expected to hear from the radio at that very moment.

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    My sister-in-law gave the wife and I a CD of funny songs, comedy bits, etc. but she didn't write down who the performers were. There was one guy we found quite funny and after having the CD for a while, we decided to see if we could figure out who it was. I gave it a half-hearted google and searched for some of the words and phrases that he used but didn't have any luck. Then, a night or two later, we fell asleep with the Comedy Central channel on and they were showing some standup comedians. A few hours later, I woke up, heard a comedian, said to myself, "That's they guy.", and then promptly fell back asleep. I mentioned it to my wife in the morning and she remembered what names they said were going to be on so we tried searching for those artists and found who we were looking for.
    Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

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    A number of years ago, I got a job as a contract employee building some research equipment for a local university. We were located in a small lab that had a glass window to a much larger room with many, many racks of computer equipment. My work bench faced that window, and I was working on a small equipment rack with several wire-wrapped electronics boards.

    I inserted my circuit board and flipped the power switch on the rack. Just as the switch went "snap", all the power in the computer room behind the window went dark. I stood there dumbfounded for a moment until I heard my supervisor's voice from behind say "It wasn't you."
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

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    Almost 5 years ago I taught the last month of a community college astronomy course for a professor on emergency family leave. There was one student who was about 8 months pregnant. She was one of the first students to turn in her final exam, and she got the best grade in the class--over 90%. I was very impressed. Most students did not do well at all.

    Last week I gave a guest presentation at the same college. In the class was a student that reminded me of her. She came up to me after the presentation, and it turns out she's pregnant too!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by pumpkinpie View Post
    Almost 5 years ago I taught the last month of a community college astronomy course for a professor on emergency family leave. There was one student who was about 8 months pregnant. She was one of the first students to turn in her final exam, and she got the best grade in the class--over 90%. I was very impressed. Most students did not do well at all.

    Last week I gave a guest presentation at the same college. In the class was a student that reminded me of her. She came up to me after the presentation, and it turns out she's pregnant too!
    That's a cool coincidence.

  14. #14
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    As far as coincidences go, a man can't lie about what I'm going to relate and still call himself a good person to his friends. Even internet ones.

    Years ago I took a friend to dinner as a way to say thank you for a favor he did for me. My favorite Chinese restarant, Lai Lai's in San Bruno. My friend, I had no idea, had a serious problem with Asians.

    I was so mortified by my friend's behavior towards the waitress and staff I was too embarrassed to ever go back. But I loved their hot and sour soup. I have a weakness for well made hot and sour soup that's nearly an addiction and they made the best in the Bay Area.

    So four years pass and I live down my shagrin and order a meal by phone as I'm still too embarrassed to go there in person.

    Just as I put the first spoon full to my lips the Loma Prietta earthquake struck. Never got to finish it as the carpet got most of it.

    Seven years later I order Lai Lai's again, after making jokes about the last time I ordered from Lai Lai's.

    Before I eat the soup the wife and I go take a bath and as we were drying off she informs me out of the blue she's leaving me. The next morning she and my two children were gone and never came back. When you have super good hearing one of the things you can hear is how empty your place is when you used to have children in it. It was like they all died in a car crash or something. I had to get a big ticking wall clock so I couldn't hear how empty the place was. The soup went unnoticed until it spoiled

    Three years after THAT and I'm still sad and I thought "What have I got to lose? My wife is gone and took my babies with her. At least I'll have a nice bowl of soup."

    Once again, and for the last time, I order their best in the world hot and sour soup. It arrives and just as I'm once again raising spoon to mouth my phone rings.

    I debate answering it. I give in. It's my aunt. My father had a heart attack in his assisted living facility and nobody noticed for about six hours, with him on the floor face down.

    I fly up north and spent a week watching my father die. I was present when his life left him.

    Proves that exchange between Hyde and Jackie from That 70's Show.

    Hyde:"What can they do to me? I've got nothing!"

    Jackie: "Oh, you can always have less!"

    I don't order anything from Lai Lai's anymore, nor do I partake if somebody else does.

    It's just a coincidence after all.
    Time wasted having fun is not time wasted - Lennon
    (John, not the other one.)

  15. #15
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    There are three things that you need to know to understand this story:

    1) My son had an art assignment to draw something relating to obsolete technology. I showed him my slide rule, but he was not enthusiastic about having to draw all of those tiny lines.

    2) My daughter and I collect scrap metal to sell at the local scrapyard. It gives her some spending money.

    3)This past Christmas I received a lathe as a gift. I had been hinting for years that I wanted one. So for the past month it has been sitting on my workbench. I just bought a nice set of lathe chisels, but how to use them?


    Here is where the coincidences start. My daughter was walking the dog in the neighborhood when she sees a very nice but rather old metal tool box in someone's trash. Of course she grabs it and brings it home. On opening it she finds two old books on how to use a wood lathe. Also in the box is a very nice hand crank drill, which my son proceeded to use in his art project.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    Last Monday: I was listening to the radio on a long car trip and heard a song start up. I thought it was Jewel's "Hands", but it turned out to be some other song. I was disappointed, because I like that song and I thought about how I hadn't heard it on the radio in a while. About an hour later, the station played "Hands".
    That might have an explanation, where it reminded the DJ or someone else who requested that song be played soon.

    I, on the other hand, have stopped believing in coincidences. Several times in the past, I've been in my car with the radio off. A song suddenly pops into my head and I start singing it. Then it hits me that I'd rather hear it and turn on the radio and tune in the nearest station (if it's not already tuned in) and that exact song is playing and picks up where I left off.
    Et tu BAUT? Quantum mutatus ab illo.

  17. #17
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    Quite a few years ago, in the middle of summer, my brother and I were on a canoe trip with some friends down one of the little rivers of New Jersey. This was a relatively boring trip that meandered through the pine barrens.

    Out of nowhere, and exactly at the same time, we both started singing a song from "Mr Magoo's Christmas Carol". Something must have triggered it, but to this day, nobody knows what it was.
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  18. #18
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    I keep meeting people via the internet, that have some kind of connection in real life. A while back, I joined a social group who's members were spread out all over Long Island. We eventually met at one woman's house for dinner one evening. While we were all talking about little tidbits of our lives, one woman got really surprised when I said I was born and raised in East Islip. She said, "I grew up there, too." As it turns out, we went to the same elementary school. We then learned, she was in the same grade as my sister. I asked what her maiden name was and it turned out that she and my sister were best friends in first grade.

    I once joined an AOL Mom's group. As I got to know the organizer, we discovered that her childhood best friend and neighbor was my (now) ex husbands first serious girlfriend.

    I now live in Florida. My fiance joined a Camaro club. When we went to the Christmas dinner we ended up talking to the people sitting across from us. A few words stood out with a distinct Long Island accent so I asked where they were from. I said I was from Long Island, too. I lived in East Islip but moved to Coram when I was 15. The wife said, "Wow! I am from West Islip but he's from Coram." I said the name of the neighborhood where I lived and that's the same neighborhood where he grew up. He literally lived two blocks over from me. He was a few years ahead of me, in school, but we probably passed each other, all the time in the neighborhood.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by closetgeek View Post
    I keep meeting people via the internet, that have some kind of connection in real life. A while back, I joined a social group who's members were spread out all over Long Island. We eventually met at one woman's house for dinner one evening. While we were all talking about little tidbits of our lives, one woman got really surprised when I said I was born and raised in East Islip. She said, "I grew up there, too." As it turns out, we went to the same elementary school. We then learned, she was in the same grade as my sister. I asked what her maiden name was and it turned out that she and my sister were best friends in first grade.

    I once joined an AOL Mom's group. As I got to know the organizer, we discovered that her childhood best friend and neighbor was my (now) ex husbands first serious girlfriend.

    I now live in Florida. My fiance joined a Camaro club. When we went to the Christmas dinner we ended up talking to the people sitting across from us. A few words stood out with a distinct Long Island accent so I asked where they were from. I said I was from Long Island, too. I lived in East Islip but moved to Coram when I was 15. The wife said, "Wow! I am from West Islip but he's from Coram." I said the name of the neighborhood where I lived and that's the same neighborhood where he grew up. He literally lived two blocks over from me. He was a few years ahead of me, in school, but we probably passed each other, all the time in the neighborhood.
    Oh wow, those are really interesting coincidences.

    The closest I come to something similar was discovering a McDonald's coworker (during college days, and 185 miles from my hometown) had, about 12 years earlier when we were kids, bought my clarinet. She came to me one day prior to punching in, said "I've got your clarinet." She'd gotten it out again for whatever reason, there was my name on its box and sheet music -- which she now recognized. I was stunned, and then remembered the day a middle-aged couple and a girl about my age came to our house to buy the clarinet and sheet music. They'd actually been in our house, and lived about 40 miles away. Years later we're both in college (different colleges), working at McD's together.

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    I was in Germany for two weeks one summer, and my mom told me a group from the high school where she taught would be there at the same time. She had no idea where.

    I was based in Heidelberg but one day took the couple hour train ride to Neuschwanstein castle. Theer I saw a person wearing a shirt from my mom's high school, and lo and behold, it was them!

  21. #21
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    Just now I had a large folder open on my hard drive, with all kinds
    of miscellaneous things in it. The name of one sub-folder caught
    my eye. It was "Planetary". I had no idea what it was. Turned out
    to contain a single PDF file that I saved one year and 33 minutes
    earlier.

    -- Jeff, in Minneapolis

  22. #22
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    Quite a few years ago, my wife and I brought our children to one of the Native American museums in Connecticut (the Institute for American Indian Studies, in Washington). We ran into one my cousins and her husband, finding out that they both had small (less than 1/8) proportions of Native-American ancestry (I don't; my cousin got that part of her ancestry from her mother, who married my mother's brother).
    Information about American English usage here and here. Floating point issues? Please read this before posting.

    How do things fly? This explains it all.

    Actually they can't: "Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible." - Lord Kelvin, president, Royal Society, 1895.



  23. #23
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    I need to correct an error in my post just above. Math.
    It was 33 minutes *short of* one year.

    Also, in another part of the forum, HUb' just posted a link
    to a photo of a galaxy, in a reply to me. I saved that same
    photo on my hard drive just three hours before I saved
    that PDF file, a year ago today.

    -- Jeff, in Minneapolis

  24. #24
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    I once ran into my boss at a job fair.
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  25. #25
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    Years ago, a friend of mine went on vacation in Austria. His phone number was close enough to mine that someone calling him dial wrong and got me instead. It happened while he was in Austria. I told the person that he dialed the wrong number, but that the person whom he was trying to call was out of the country anyway. I never explained the fact that we were friends or anything like that. He probably thought that I have ESP or something.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    I once ran into my boss at a job fair.
    Was he looking for a job or for employees?
    Information about American English usage here and here. Floating point issues? Please read this before posting.

    How do things fly? This explains it all.

    Actually they can't: "Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible." - Lord Kelvin, president, Royal Society, 1895.



  27. #27
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    I think he was looking for a job. It was a very strange situation. We just kind of nodded hello to each other and never mentioned it again.
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  28. #28
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    Only my wife could have this happen...

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Solfe

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Solfe View Post
    Only my wife could have this happen...
    Had to google that.
    Et tu BAUT? Quantum mutatus ab illo.

  30. #30
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    Here's one from one of our own members (not active recently, however):

    The Strangest Coincidence EVER
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

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