Over the past week I’ve experienced a couple of startling coincidences–or possibly I only perceive them as such. I certainly don’t believe in any mysterious invisible forces that make these things happen, but these were definitely on the strange side. I’ve talked about them in a Facebook comment today, so if you know me there you might have already read the gist of what I’m about to say here
The first one was about a week ago when I was at the doctor’s office, sitting in an exam room. Passing the time with a crossword while waiting for the nurse practitioner, I had just answered the clue “Latin word for ‘goddess’”, which is “Dea”. At that moment the NP entered and introduced herself, and guess what her given name is? I’ll give you one guess. And it’s not like it’s a very common name. If the clue had been “______, Queen of Scots” and the NP’s name turned out to be Mary, one might have said “so what”.
Today’s coincidence was equally odd. A FB friend posted a request for slogans or quotes from advertisements that don’t necessarily mention the product name. For some reason I thought of the line “really rings the bell [ding! ding!]” from the old animated Good & Plenty candy commercials. I probably haven’t eaten or thought about Good & Plenty since I was about ten. I’m not an avid eater of candy by any stretch. But whatever, such was my response to my fiend’s post. To bring this shaggy dog story to its payoff, it so happened my wife walked in a few minutes later, returning from the store with a box of G&P in her hand. In 22 years of marriage I have NEVER seen her eat that kind of candy (or much of any candy really, she’s like me in that respect). She has NEVER seen me eat it, and I can’t remember a single time when we ever even mentioned it to each other.
So those are my two big coincidences. As I said, I don’t think there’s some mysterious unseen force, like “eddies in the space time continuum” that makes these things happen; coincidences are exactly that and nothing more. But they can certainly be unusual.
What are your recent experiences with coincidences?