Author Topic: Strange coincidences and twists of fate  (Read 2570 times)

falafel

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Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #30 on: June 19, 2004, 08:47:27 AM »
Quote from: "Kingboy_D"
stuff


That's what I think too.

You seen Waking Life? It's fascinating. A bit pretentious perhaps, but overall quite a dreamy overview of a range of ideas on fate and such, from the genius to the bizarre to the downright stupid.

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Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #31 on: June 19, 2004, 09:10:57 AM »
Excellent post, Kingboy D.  

The Number 23 thing occupied my waking thoughts on many an occasion as well - though I have to honestly say that these days I hardly see any 23s around at all.  I'll still periodically leave them around for other people to find them so that they'll be freaked out, though.

The best number 23 event I can think of is when I was trying to explain to a friend the concept of the number 23, and it's inevitable occurrences at bizarre and opportune moments.  We were walking along Elm Road in Portsmouth and he was laughing at me, refusing to take me seriously.  I was so into convincing him that I turned to face him as I crossed the road, and said "No, honestly, consider it over the next week or so and see what happens, see how many times you spot it".  Just at that very moment, a number 23 bus came far too fast around the corner and my friend had to pull me back on the kerb to stop me from being hit.  He was quite visibly shaken up.  
"It's OK, I believe you now", he said.

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #32 on: June 19, 2004, 11:14:48 AM »
Quote from: "23 Daves"
23 shenanigans...


bizzarre, that's what happens at the end of a song i did a month or 2 back...

about being so busy looking around for 23's narrator nearly gets hit by a 22 bus...

i think i'll put that down to coincidence though. :)

edit to bung in in a more appropriate thread (se. post your chowns if you're interested)

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #33 on: June 19, 2004, 11:41:48 AM »
The composer Alban Berg was obssesed by the number 23, and included it in all sorts of ways in his music (metronome marks = 46, 69 etc) as well as in the actual notes he chose.

But the best story about composers and numbers is this one about Schoenberg:

Quote
In later life he became increasingly superstitious about the number thirteen, so much so that he even numbered bar 13 as '12a' in some works.  He became convinced that the number 13 would signify his own death: at the age of 76 (7+6=13) he became increasingly fearful of the day of Friday, 13th July.  He took to his bed for most of this day, but awoke at 11.45 p.m. and asked the time: at thirteen minutes to midnight (11:47: 1+1+4+7=13), he died.


From this book

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« Reply #34 on: June 19, 2004, 01:50:44 PM »
Quote from: "poison popcorn"


bizzarre, that's what happens at the end of a song i did a month or 2 back...

about being so busy looking around for 23's narrator nearly gets hit by a 22 bus...


Well, I have posted that story up on here before (a long time ago though, I think) so it's not impossible it was just buried deep in your subconscience.  

I'd prefer to think it's just the number 23 doing its coincidental thang again, though, that is if I actually really completely believed it anymore.

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #35 on: June 19, 2004, 04:05:03 PM »
Quote from: "Timmay"

I've got some fairly major and many minor "fateful" stories myself, and I along with everyone else sometimes ponders on "what could have have been", or "where would I be now if...". But take no_offenc's story; what if they hadn't played any Andrew WK? You might not have bothered going so soon, and may have met a pair of rich 19 year old blonde bisexual incestuous Swedish twins instead, and probably wouldn't be wasting your hours away on t'internet, talking to us geeks, other than to come on between sessions, and post "ahhahahahhahhaahhhahhahhah, suckers."
...


That's the thing, whatever situation you're in, there's always a situation you could be in that would be better, which is why thinking "well it could have been like this...." is both counter-productive and maddening.

It's like when you get people who go "I'm soooo glad I'm with [so and so], they're the best in the world" How do they know? Unless they've been out with every single other person in the world there's no way to know. I had an argument with a friend of mine a while back because she was saying that if her husband died she'd kill herself because she was certain there was no-one else out there and that he was "the one". That's a lovely attitude to have, I think, and to be fair it was a bit mean of me to argue against it, but it just seemed ridiculous to me that someone who has only lived in a couple of places in the UK in her life and is only 21 could know for certain that this one person is "the one". The fact that she met him by utter chance when a train broke down and they were forced to share a hotel room makes it even more so. If that train hadn't broke down she'd likely to married to someone else and saying "he's the one". She's definetly a believer in fate though so to her I guess that moment was "the fateful day".

I think you just have to "go with the flow" really. Go with what you feel is right at the time, don't worry about the fact that you could be missing out on something else, because at the end of the day you're always going to be missing out on something, it's impossible to avoid it. I don't think there's anything wrong with believing in fate though. To be honest I wish I believed in God and fate and all that stuff, it would make life seem a lot more purposeful and I wouldn't be so worried about whether I've made the right choices in life .

terminallyrelaxed

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Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #36 on: June 19, 2004, 06:09:54 PM »
Quote from: "falafel"
Quote from: "Kingboy_D"
stuff


That's what I think too.

You seen Waking Life? It's fascinating. A bit pretentious perhaps, but overall quite a dreamy overview of a range of ideas on fate and such, from the genius to the bizarre to the downright stupid.


As a slight coincidence, I hadn't read you post yet but was in the video shop not ten minutes ago looking at renting this, before it was vetoed (not by me) because its animation. Oh well.

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #37 on: June 19, 2004, 06:54:48 PM »
Coincidence and fate seems to me to be little more than an expression of the human trait to create patterns in random things. We like order and rules, and thus try to impose them on on that which has none.

Certain things are common enough (e.g lower order numbers such as 13 or 23) that it is almost inevitable we will experience events that feature these marks and can make some false link between them.

It's not supernatural, fate, or any other deterministic force. It's just a series of unrelated events with a common feature that makes for a good story.

Bogey

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Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #38 on: June 19, 2004, 07:04:07 PM »
Someone, on some other thread, some time ago, mentioned the "penguin effect" (I think), that being the thing where once you've noticed something, you start to notice it everywhere, as if it's magically appeared all over the place, which it never has of course. So it's funny to think that our brains are always on the lookout for things, even when we think we've forgotten about them.
Anyway, the "penguin effect"? Why the hell is it called that, anyone know?

Yay! 400! I'll be a big boy soon!

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #39 on: June 19, 2004, 07:13:07 PM »
Quote from: "Bogey"
Someone, on some other thread, some time ago, mentioned the "penguin effect" (I think), that being the thing where once you've noticed something, you start to notice it everywhere, as if it's magically appeared all over the place, which it never has of course. So it's funny to think that our brains are always on the lookout for things, even when we think we've forgotten about them.
Anyway, the "penguin effect"? Why the hell is it called that, anyone know?

Yay! 400! I'll be a big boy soon!


It's because it's based on the premise that if someone tells you not to think about penguins you won't be able to think about anything else. This courtesy of a Bash Street Kids strip in one of the Beano annuals.

Bogey

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« Reply #40 on: June 19, 2004, 07:16:12 PM »
...which actually rings a tiny tiny little bell in my brain. I did used to get Beano annuals when I was little... don't think of a penguin... yep, it's small and shrivelled, and starting to smell a bit, but the memory's still there.
Thanks for that!

Lt Plonker

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« Reply #41 on: June 19, 2004, 08:23:12 PM »
Quote from: "terminallyrelaxed"
Quote from: "falafel"
Quote from: "Kingboy_D"
stuff


That's what I think too.

You seen Waking Life? It's fascinating. A bit pretentious perhaps, but overall quite a dreamy overview of a range of ideas on fate and such, from the genius to the bizarre to the downright stupid.


As a slight coincidence, I hadn't read you post yet but was in the video shop not ten minutes ago looking at renting this, before it was vetoed (not by me) because its animation. Oh well.


Wow, me too! I think this means we need to get married now.

Vermschneid Mehearties

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« Reply #42 on: June 19, 2004, 08:38:28 PM »
My identical twin Ben died just after he was born. The only time anyone gets my name wrong, they call me Ben, and each time it happens, I get gradually more freaked out. I'm Jack by the way, in case you want to call me Ben.

Maybe it's my punishment for hogging the placenta.

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #43 on: June 19, 2004, 09:13:19 PM »
Is there some sort of saying that goes for every death there is a life?

Well many years ago when I was not nearly as old as I am now we lost my favorite uncle. He went missing. A few days later my youngest sister was born, with meningitus ,might I add. She was not expected to live.
A couple of  days later I remember answering the door to two policemen when my mum was out shopping and they seemed to have something important to say. Just as I told them my mum was out she returned and it turned out that they had found my uncle in his car in a field. Dead. He had commited suicide. Stupid fucker had killed himself over some bird that had spent all his money.
After we had buried our uncle my sisters health dramatically increased and she was allowed home just in time for Christmas on the 23rd December.
Is this just a coincidence that a family can lose one member and gain another one with a degree of uncertainty inbetween. I mean, would my sister have died if the police had not found my uncles body when they did, or at all?
And why does my sister have goofy teeth? She gets the silly walk off me but I can't remember my uncle having goofy teeth.

In another strange set of family circumstances, not long after I found out that I had a brother. I was around 14 years old. He was older and looked like my dad, but I looked like my mum. He had decided to contact my dad for reasons of his own and subsequently wanted to meet his brother and sister. I've only ever seen him once since but I know that he is into exactly the same sports (fishing and formula 1) as me and my dad are.
In the very same week that I first met him. A man who looked like Marti Pellow contacted my Auntie. It turned out that he was her son who she hadn't seen since birth.

We then find out that my oldest brother that I've only met twice is actually my youngest sister's cousin.

Finally at another cousins wedding, I decide to pull a moony and get another one of my uncles to take a photo with a camera which is left lying on a table. The rest of the night I spent in complete horror as I discovered that my uncle, who I had just shown my arse (and probably balls) to, was gay and the camera that he took the photo with belonged to my youngest sister.

What the fuck is God playing at?

Joy Nktonga

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« Reply #44 on: June 19, 2004, 09:23:10 PM »
At exactly the same time I read this:
Quote from: "Vermschneid Mehearties"
I'm Jack by the way

Inspector Frost, on the telly like, says
Quote
I'm Jack by the way

Totally unrelated to each other, but a coincidence nonetheless.

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #45 on: June 19, 2004, 10:16:16 PM »
Quote from: "Mister Six"
I think fate is a load of arse, though I did notice a handful of interesting coincidences when I was writing a history dissertation on John F Kennedy. The best of these was when I was strugging to think of the word that describes a phrase or rhyme which assists the memory. Defeated, I turned on the TV only for Ron Manager from The Fast Show to pop up and say "...it's a mnemonic, isn't it?"

Not that I took any of these as Signs from Beyond; I was just in the right frame of mind to actually notice coincidences that would otherwise have gone by undetected.


The number of times I've said or typed something to someone while listening to radio four, only to have the person on the radio say the word I've just said/ typed two seconds later.  And I'm not talking about words like "the" and "a" either.

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« Reply #46 on: June 19, 2004, 10:18:10 PM »
Yes, but that's because they've got secret cameras trained on your every move.

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #47 on: June 19, 2004, 10:47:49 PM »
Quote from: "Cerys"
Yes, but that's because they've got secret cameras trained on your every move.



0_o

I was only half way through page 1 when I posted, so there's another coincidence with what  Joy Nktonga turned out to have posted afore me.

Another thing that occured to me after reading the whole thread is that I had a psycho mate once who was convinced fate was out to get her, that it was making bad things happen to victimise her.  Ironically this victim complex was what was making bad things happen to her - she refused to take responsibility for all the shit going on, blaming it on fate, hence never doing anything to stop it happening. Silly moo.


Off to take some mental immodium now. soz.

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #48 on: June 20, 2004, 02:58:31 PM »
Quote from: "23 Daves"
Quote from: "poison popcorn"


bizzarre, that's what happens at the end of a song i did a month or 2 back...

about being so busy looking around for 23's narrator nearly gets hit by a 22 bus...


Well, I have posted that story up on here before (a long time ago though, I think) so it's not impossible it was just buried deep in your subconscience.  

I'd prefer to think it's just the number 23 doing its coincidental thang again, though, that is if I actually really completely believed it anymore.


ooh, that's possible, my memory is a bit shafted, things often seem familiar and i don't know why... although this one was more to do with my ex who had a fascination with all things 23, and i wrote most of it on the train back from my last trip to see her.

but like you say, it's not impossible you could be due some credit/blame for it happening.

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« Reply #49 on: June 20, 2004, 03:04:11 PM »
I think I've said this before on this very forum in a similar thread:

Coincidences aren't amazing. For everything that is a coincidence, think of everything that isn't a coincidence. Coincidences exist purely because they have to by virue of mathematical logic.

Despite the above, they make for some interesting stories (as long as you don't take them too seriously), as others have mentioned.

And I definitely agree with that "penguin theory" thing. That story about Schoenerg is bollocks. It would be more interesting if the number 13 materialised out of everywhere exactly as it is, but if you have to twist things, adding, subtracting etc to get to the number 13 then it's just human meddling and nothing else.

E.g. If Schoenberg had died at 13.13 on the 13th of....well there's no thirteenth month...of 1913...then maybe it would be sorta cool. But saying..."Oh he died at fourteen minutes past the hour...which is one more than thirteen!!!!111" or whatever, is just silly.

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« Reply #50 on: June 20, 2004, 03:13:05 PM »
This thread reminds me of Will Self's superlative book "The Quantity Theory of Insanity". In one of the stories (the title story I think) the main character thinks that he can predict when this other character (a professor, I think) will suddenly walk into a random toilet in London. He spends ages working out the formula and when the guy walks into the toilet, he is absolutely awestruck. However, straight away his elation is dashed as he realises that it was just pure coincidence.

Something like that, anyway: it's been a while since I read the book (must dig it out again). It's a great book, full of whimsy, delighful language and bizzare situations.

Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #51 on: June 20, 2004, 06:35:58 PM »
It didn't change my life or anything but a few years ago I phoned my Mum at work to find out if my car insurance stuff had been sent through (I had just bought a place and hadn’t changed the address). Now I would very rarely ever have the need to call my Mum from my work (can't remember the last time, could be years). She answered and said

"Hello Robert, there is someone here who wants a word with you."
"Alright Bob, how you doing?"
Well, only my work mates call me Bob.
"Eer, who's this?"
"It's Paul Hawkridge."

Now my Mum works in the Royal Hallamshire Hospital in one of the thousands of offices spread out around its 18 floors. Minutes before I called my Mum, a bloke knocked and entered her office to install a new computer and noticed the pictures she had on her wall. Pictures of my Dad, my Bro and of me.
"Is that Bob?" he asked.
"You mean Robert, yes it is."
"I used to work with him"

At this point I called.
The thing is is that I use to work with Paul in the RAF and he was from Hull and when he left as far as I was aware, he had returned to Hull.

What were the odds of that?

 what’s that you say, about 12 -1?

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« Reply #52 on: June 20, 2004, 08:52:34 PM »
Only just remembered  something that could go in this thread...

One night in 1997, I strangely woke up at about 5 o'clock in the morning. Fairly rare occurance for me at the time. Generally the only reason I wake up that early unintentionally is from sun rise if I have thin curtains. However, it was still dark.
Anyhow, even rarer, instead of just rolling over and going back to sleep, I turned the tv on. To discover that the BBC were in Newsflash mode, covering the crash of Princess Diana's car...  Watched it for a few minutes, long enough to hear the BBC start to say "we have unconfirmed reports that Princess Diana has died. We are trying to confirm these reports...."

Slightly odd. But nothing really to do with fate. The Crow Road by Iain Banks has some good stuff about coincidences and God... Uhhh, not that it's hugely relelvant.

Bogey

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Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #53 on: June 20, 2004, 10:07:38 PM »
I happened to be up that night as well actually, for some reason, and I saw it all unfold live.
Crap telly though, you didn't get to see any blood or owt.

Cerys

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« Reply #54 on: June 20, 2004, 10:11:12 PM »
Hmmm.  I dropped an acid tab that night.  Enough said.

Bogey

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Strange coincidences and twists of fate
« Reply #55 on: June 20, 2004, 10:53:47 PM »
I hope you found it, and it didn't have too much fluff on it.

Right, I've posted far, far too many times today. I'm off.

Cerys

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« Reply #56 on: June 20, 2004, 11:05:53 PM »
Thankyou for your concern, Bogey - no, it was largely fluffless when I located it.  And very sparkly.

falafel

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« Reply #57 on: June 21, 2004, 10:35:18 AM »
My alarm didn't work this morning, but the Jehova's Witnesses just woke me up. What a coincidence. Still threw  their leaflet in the bin though.

The following conversation is paraphrased:

Quote
"We're just going round asking some people this question that we know a lot of people are concerned about, what with war, disease, the Gays and all that. What a lot of people want to know is, will this world survive [points at little leaflet with aforesaid title]. Does this ever concern you at all?"

"No."

"Are you sure you're not just burying your head in the sand?"

"Yes."

"Well, creator, prophesy, famine, apocalypse, blah, saved, comfort, etc..."

"That's nice [struggles to keep from laughing at these poor deluded old biddies]"

"Well, would you like a copy?"

"Ooh, yes. That'd be lovely. Thank you."

"Gawd bless ya, luv"


I really didn't know what to think. I mean, they seemed so nice and all, but their belief system is just such bollocks. I felt like saying ,"Hey, wasn't the world meant to end 29 years ago? What happened to that then?"

So I just smiled and shut the door. Apparently my grandad used to just tell them violently to fuck off , but that's a bit unfair, really. It's not their fault they're easily manipulable and completely deluded. Is it?

Anyway, this post is about fate in a roundabout way. You just have to read between the lines.

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« Reply #58 on: June 21, 2004, 11:24:32 AM »
I am remembering Oragazmo,

Quote
Joe Young: We're from The Church of Jesus Christ.
Old Lady: Oh, the Mormons?
Joe Young: That's right. I'm elder Young and this is elder White.
Old Lady: Well, you two boys can just fuck right off.
Joe Young: Ma'am?
Old Lady: You heard me. Take that book of Mormons and shove it so far up your righteous asses that you choke, you soul soliciting pigfuckers.

Cerys

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« Reply #59 on: June 21, 2004, 03:18:26 PM »
On the subject of coincidences -

Quote from: "In the 'Obvious Things...' thread, The Boston Crab"
Americans say 'maul' for that big shopping centre thing but we say 'mall.'

Imagine a game of Monopoly, you land on 'Paul Maul.' Sounds fucking stupid doesn't it?


Last night I was reading in bed, (Our Mutual Friend, Dickens), and came across the word 'pall'.  This got me thinking about its pronunciation (pawl), and the fact that it isn't pronounced like that in 'Pall Mall'.

Spooky....