Coincidence

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Chris Davies
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Coincidence

Post by Chris Davies » Tue Feb 17, 2009 9:47 pm

Just a couple of hours ago, I was playing my favourite Itbox game, Word Soup, at a local restaurant where I often go with my family, and a few members of the bar staff were watching me (impressed with my clearing the board in a previous game, apparently). When I mentioned to them that I was going to audition for Countdown, one of them told me he'd actually BEEN on Countdown. Turned out to be Martin May, a contestant from Series 56/57. What are the odds?

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Kai Laddiman » Tue Feb 17, 2009 9:53 pm

Chris Davies wrote:What are the odds?
Approximately 1723 to 1. By induction.
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Ben Hunter » Wed Feb 18, 2009 12:52 am

Chris Davies wrote:Just a couple of hours ago, I was playing my favourite Itbox game, Word Soup, at a local restaurant where I often go with my family, and a few members of the bar staff were watching me (impressed with my clearing the board in a previous game, apparently). When I mentioned to them that I was going to audition for Countdown, one of them told me he'd actually BEEN on Countdown. Turned out to be Martin May, a contestant from Series 56/57. What are the odds?
Martin May is notable for cutting short forum member Mikey Lear's octochamp run at the last, before being beaten by a contestant whose own octochamp run was cut short at the last.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Martin Gardner » Wed Feb 18, 2009 1:39 pm

Best coincidence I've ever had is this:

When I was a youngish teenager (about 13 or 14) I went to stay with my step-mother's parents in Wadebridge, Cornwall. While there, we went looking round some shops and I bumped into someone from my English class at school in one of the shops! Wadebridge is 350 miles away from Leeds (source: Google Maps).
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Ian Fitzpatrick » Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:15 pm

Martin Gardner wrote:Best coincidence I've ever had is this:

When I was a youngish teenager (about 13 or 14) I went to stay with my step-mother's parents in Wadebridge, Cornwall. While there, we went looking round some shops and I bumped into someone from my English class at school in one of the shops! Wadebridge is 350 miles away from Leeds (source: Google Maps).
In the last century (ie 1990's) I was on a cheap four day trip to New York and while in the serpentine queue to go through their obnoxious immigration check I came across a guy I had worked with about ten years earlier. That's 3,00 miles or so (haven't checked Google maps)
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jon Corby » Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:18 pm

That probably suggests he was on the exact same flight as you though. Martin's is better :P

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Matt Morrison » Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:24 pm

I've been to Amsterdam six times and every single time I've been I've bumped into someone I know from the UK.
Was super surprising the first couple of times but now I seem to expect it (which is an odd situation in itself).
On second thoughts, this might just be an appraisal of the kind of people I have hung around with at times.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Charlie Reams » Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:40 pm

Matt Morrison wrote:I've been to Amsterdam six times and every single time I've been I've bumped into someone I know from the UK.
Was super surprising the first couple of times but now I seem to expect it (which is an odd situation in itself).
On second thoughts, this might just be an appraisal of the kind of people I have hung around with at times.
I can't imagine what aspect of Amsterdam appeals so dependably to you and your friends.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Debbi Flack » Wed Feb 18, 2009 5:07 pm

When I was living in Australia in 1995 I bumped into an old nursing tutor of mine (from UK) who had taught me in 1979. I thought that was a pretty amazing coinidence - but then I'm easily impressed.
She came, she saw - oh well, at least she tried!

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Kai Laddiman » Wed Feb 18, 2009 5:17 pm

My mum just randomly turned the TV on to that awful show Goldenballs, when up on the screen appears Richard Pascoe. Amay-zing.
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Ian Volante » Wed Feb 18, 2009 9:36 pm

I was in a pub in Sydney supping on my own at the bar, and a lad from my class who I'd not seen since the last day of school six years earlier walked in with his wife.
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jon O'Neill » Wed Feb 18, 2009 9:48 pm

I was reading this thread and then I went outside and it was raining.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Ian Volante » Wed Feb 18, 2009 9:49 pm

Jon O'Neill wrote:I was reading this thread and then I went outside and it was raining.
Fook!
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Martin Gardner » Wed Feb 18, 2009 10:20 pm

Not quite as good, but Countdown related, is that while in Nice in 2004 someone recognised me as being on Countdown. It was a British person, and I'd stopped to talk to home for no other reason than he was talking in English and my French was pretty sh*t back then, so it's not really a massive coincidence. It just shows that loads of people watch Countdown, yet when I'm at uni people hardly ever talk about it. I have one friend that quite likes it, and because she works evenings/nights she gets to watch a couple of times a week.
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Dinos Sfyris » Thu Feb 19, 2009 12:50 am

Jon O'Neill wrote:I was reading this thread and then I went outside and it was raining.
:)

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Debbi Flack » Thu Feb 19, 2009 8:20 am

Ian Volante wrote:I was in a pub in Sydney supping on my own at the bar, and a lad from my class who I'd not seen since the last day of school six years earlier walked in with his wife.
I went into a pub in Sydney once :o :shock: ;)
She came, she saw - oh well, at least she tried!

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Phil Reynolds » Thu Feb 19, 2009 10:38 am

Debbi Flack wrote:I went into a pub in Sydney once :o :shock: ;)
So did I. The Lord Nelson, if I remember correctly, in The Rocks. What a coincidence.

And what's even more of a coincidence is that I was told a supposedly true story there, about coincidence. When HM Queen Elizabeth II was on a state visit to Australia some time in the 1980s, she was shaking hands with a line of well-wishers and asked one the traditional royal question: "And what do you do?" The guy replied, "I'm a photographer." "Oh, that's a coincidence," said Her Maj. "My brother-in-law's a photographer."

"That is a coincidence," said the Aussie. "My brother-in-law's a queen."

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Thu Feb 19, 2009 12:47 pm

I recall being on holiday with my parents a very long time ago in a small hotel in the Isle of Skye. My father got talking to a Canadian couple, and as we have Canadian relatives, asked where they were from. Having narrowed it down to Ottawa, he gave the relative's name and said it would really be a coincidence if they knew him. When the Canadian picked himself up, he revealed that he lived next door to him.....

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jason Larsen » Thu Feb 19, 2009 4:34 pm

Damian and Jeff Stelling both call Countdown Alphabet Soup, but Damian first came up with that name because he wanted to figure out an easy way to remember the format of the show.

Also, how did it feel to see Richard Pascoe on Golden Balls?

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Re: Coincidence

Post by AnnieHall » Thu Feb 19, 2009 4:47 pm

I like Goldenballs, it's fun guessing who has the killers and whether or not they split or steal at the end.
It's amazing how many people turn up in several game shows over & over again!

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jason Larsen » Thu Feb 19, 2009 5:09 pm

Countdown is so different from Golden Balls though. In the case that we are thinking of, we consider asking Richard Pascoe, "Are you really good at Countdown, or do you want to humiliate yourself on British television?"

It's funny, because I'll probably never know how Richard did. Most likely though, he was hanging his head in shame and either had his balls binned or had a missed opportunity occur!

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Chris Corby » Thu Feb 19, 2009 6:21 pm

When I was six I was in Gibraltar where my father was stationed and the Queen paid us a visit and all the kids from all the schools travelled to see her inspect the troops so were bussed there in army lorries which had canvas sides and roofs and we were going through a tunnel to get there and the driver drove too close to the side of the tunnel and a pipe or something was sticking out from the rock face and ripped through the canvas on the lorry and sliced the arm of this lad called Martin and we had to divert to the hospital drop him off then rush to the barracks to see the Queen and then back I came back to England two years' later and when I was fifteen I got on the bus to go home from school and sat next to this lad and looked once then twice at him and realised it was not Martin. Amazing!

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Charlie Reams » Thu Feb 19, 2009 6:26 pm

Chris Corby wrote:When I was six I was in Gibraltar where my father was stationed and the Queen paid us a visit and all the kids from all the schools travelled to see her inspect the troops so were bussed there in army lorries which had canvas sides and roofs and we were going through a tunnel to get there and the driver drove too close to the side of the tunnel and a pipe or something was sticking out from the rock face and ripped through the canvas on the lorry and sliced the arm of this lad called Martin and we had to divert to the hospital drop him off then rush to the barracks to see the Queen and then back I came back to England two years' later and when I was fifteen I got on the bus to go home from school and sat next to this lad and looked once then twice at him and realised it was not Martin. Amazing!
Was this in 1945 by any chance?

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Chris Corby » Thu Feb 19, 2009 6:43 pm

There was a King on the throne in 1945 you moron. University educations these days, tut tut......

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Charlie Reams » Thu Feb 19, 2009 6:44 pm

I'm a revisionist historian.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jason Larsen » Thu Feb 19, 2009 6:52 pm

I was just thinking about someone who I ran into recently!

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Re: Coincidence

Post by JimBentley » Thu Feb 19, 2009 7:06 pm

Jason Larsen wrote:I was just thinking about someone who I ran into recently!
I hope you weren't in your car, Jason, that would have been awful!

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Re: Coincidence

Post by David Williams » Thu Feb 19, 2009 7:22 pm

There was a King on the throne in 1945.

He had a wife, I believe, who was not known as the Queen Mother in those days.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jason Larsen » Thu Feb 19, 2009 7:53 pm

I was on the city bus, Jim.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Phil Reynolds » Thu Feb 19, 2009 8:06 pm

Chris Corby wrote:There was a King on the throne in 1945 you moron.
1845 then?

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Ian Volante » Thu Feb 19, 2009 8:19 pm

David Williams wrote:There was a King on the throne in 1945.

He had a wife, I believe, who was not known as the Queen Mother in those days.
Indeed, she was known as Princess Elizabeth. Lovely smile.
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Re: Coincidence

Post by David Williams » Thu Feb 19, 2009 9:06 pm

Must have been confusing to have a wife and daughter with the same name and title. I think not.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Kirk Bevins » Thu Feb 19, 2009 9:12 pm

Jason Larsen wrote:I was on the city bus, Jim.
Hahahaha, best post ever. Made me laugh out loud. Brilliant.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Ian Volante » Thu Feb 19, 2009 9:24 pm

David Williams wrote:Must have been confusing to have a wife and daughter with the same name and title. I think not.
I suppose Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother is a bit of giveaway.
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Chris Corby » Fri Feb 20, 2009 12:39 am

Phil Reynolds wrote:
Chris Corby wrote:There was a King on the throne in 1945 you moron.
1845 then?
No it wasn't 1845, it was early afternoon, around 1415.........

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Matt Morrison » Fri Feb 20, 2009 11:37 pm

Charlie Reams wrote:
Matt Morrison wrote:I've been to Amsterdam six times and every single time I've been I've bumped into someone I know from the UK.
Was super surprising the first couple of times but now I seem to expect it (which is an odd situation in itself).
On second thoughts, this might just be an appraisal of the kind of people I have hung around with at times.
I can't imagine what aspect of Amsterdam appeals so dependably to you and your friends.
Well now that you mention it; canals. Oh, and tall thin houses.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Charlie Reams » Sat Feb 21, 2009 1:04 am

Surely this is the greatest coincidence of all time.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Lesley Jeavons » Wed Mar 04, 2009 4:55 pm

After Linda McCartney died there was a memorial service in the church by Leicester Square, and lots of us animal rights types gathered in the square to pay our respects.

Loads of news channels were there, and the BBC were looking for someone who had gone veggie because of Linda. I hadn't, but I did have a story about my friend Joanne and I who started buying her foods before becoming veggie as we thought if you can have the cruelty free version, then why not? So they interviewed me.

Cut to my friend Joanne, sat in her house in Edinburgh, dozing off while watching something on Sky when her arm slipped, elbow pressed the remote, which turned the TV over to BBC News 24 and there was me on TV talking about "me and my friend Joanne"! 8-)

(I've yet to see it, though hope it turns up in the BBC archives one day.)

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jason Larsen » Wed Mar 04, 2009 6:31 pm

How did they end up interviewing you, Lesley?

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Lesley Jeavons » Wed Mar 04, 2009 6:49 pm

They were interviewing a friend of mine who worked for PeTA at the time, and she suggested me when they said what they were looking for.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jason Larsen » Wed Mar 04, 2009 7:08 pm

PETA is an international organization?

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Lesley Jeavons » Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:09 pm

Yes. They have a UK office and campaign over here, but they're still more thought of as a US organisation.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jason Larsen » Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:19 pm

Very nice!

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Kai Laddiman » Wed Jun 10, 2009 8:20 pm

I randomly clicked on a wiki episode and picked this, the game from the day I was born. Fascinating.
16/10/2007 - Episode 4460
Dinos Sfyris 76 - 78 Dorian Lidell
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jon O'Neill » Wed Jun 10, 2009 8:29 pm

http://www.countdownwiki.com/Episode_863

My birthdate. Good old Georgia Hole in DC.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by kevin manthorpe » Fri Jun 12, 2009 8:03 pm

Phil Reynolds wrote:
Debbi Flack wrote:I went into a pub in Sydney once :o :shock: ;)
So did I. The Lord Nelson, if I remember correctly, in The Rocks. What a coincidence.
You only went to one pub in Sydney? Did anyone tell you about Oxford Street?
Phil Reynolds wrote: And what's even more of a coincidence is that I was told a supposedly true story there, about coincidence. When HM Queen Elizabeth II was on a state visit to Australia some time in the 1980s, she was shaking hands with a line of well-wishers and asked one the traditional royal question: "And what do you do?" The guy replied, "I'm a photographer." "Oh, that's a coincidence," said Her Maj. "My brother-in-law's a photographer."

"That is a coincidence," said the Aussie. "My brother-in-law's a queen."
Aussie (gay) urban myth!!!

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Phil Reynolds » Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:58 pm

kevin manthorpe wrote:You only went to one pub in Sydney? Did anyone tell you about Oxford Street?
I abandoned my (straight) travelling companions to devote one entire evening to the delights of Oxford Street. I can't remember the names of any of the bars though.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by kevin manthorpe » Sat Jun 13, 2009 1:28 pm

Phil Reynolds wrote:I can't remember the names of any of the bars though.
FYI and to in rememberance to my misspent youth, you most likely went to The Albury, The Exchange, Midnight Shift and possibly even Patches!

And to bring this thread back on topic, I once chatted on Omegle to the only female bartender at the Shift.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Andy Wilson » Tue Jun 16, 2009 9:36 pm

I went to London with a mate and met up with a friend(i'd never met before) of a friend to keep a promise at one of those Pubs at Hammersmith bridge where you can sit outside and my buddy's mate on whose floor we were crashing came along too. Anyway, said friend of friend who we were all meeting for the first time made use of the dutch courage and unfamiliar faces to bitch about her relationship with her boyfriend, only to find out later that my buddy's mate was a work colleague of his, cue much begging and snivling.

Another time i went to London to play some gigs in Stoke Newington but was crashing at my girlfriend's friends' place. We were hoping it wasn't gonna be the other side of town as we'd heard London was quite big. They happened to live in Stoke Newington. Convenient.

Oh, yeah, and i moved in with this dude in Cork in 04 and after a chat about Dublin, where we were both from, it turned out he was the brother of the guy who sat in the chair directly in front of me at first year in secondary school, whose family had moved to Cork after that summer.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Sue Sanders » Wed Oct 14, 2009 11:40 am

My (then) husband and I were on holiday in Tenerife and got talking with the bloke in the next apartment. Although he lived somewhere in the South East, he knew a few people in Wellingborough, where we lived. Turned out after quite a long conversation that he'd been to the flat that I lived in before I got married, because a few years before, his best mate's brother had lived there.

Some years later, a girl I was at school with was a customer at the opticians I worked at. We got talking. Turns out she'd moved into that same flat about 5 years after me.
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Kirk Bevins » Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:30 pm

Oh my God. Just had the weirdest coincidence ever.

I was flicking through the dictionary looking for awesome new words and found TZEDAKAH and thought "Jesus, if I get that in CofC that's definitely a winner and would be word of the CofC series". 10 minutes later I log onto apterous and up comes the TTT.

"Your new teaser is AKETZAHD. You have one minute to answer!"

I looked - HAKATZED? Nope, can't get it.

Then: "Time's up and no one got it! The answer to AKETZAHD was TZEDAKAH."

I couldn't believe my eyes - weirdest coincidence ever. Annoyed to miss the word though.

Moral of the story? You can't learn new words/learn how to spot new words just be looking at them in a dictionary - more needs to be done.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Gavin Chipper » Tue Nov 10, 2009 6:45 pm

Kirk Bevins wrote:Moral of the story? You can't learn new words/learn how to spot new words just be looking at them in a dictionary - more needs to be done.
Yeah, but you're rubbish at Countdown.

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Re: Coincidence

Post by Sue Sanders » Tue Nov 10, 2009 9:57 pm

Kirk Bevins wrote: ( a story).............Moral of the story? You can't learn new words/learn how to spot new words just be looking at them in a dictionary - more needs to be done.
Or, maybe you shouldn't have let Damo get you to cut all your hair off.
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Alice Moore » Wed Nov 11, 2009 8:54 pm

All these coincidences are much more likely than they appear to be.

I guess this is all parade rain, but I can't resist...

Let's take the bumping-into-people-in-unlikely-places one.

During the course of your life you will become acquainted with hundreds, or more likely thousands, of people. This may sound surprising but if you think about everyone you ever lived near, everyone you ever went to school with, worked with, everyone who ever served you in a local shop / library / cafe, every friend of a friend that you met at a party, etc etc...

Now think about all the people you pass on a daily basis. On the street, on the bus, in the library. Not people you interact with, just people you walk past / sit near, etc. It's millions. Millions.

Eventually, one of those people you walk past / sit near etc will be one of the people you know, or vaguely know.

And this includes on holiday, particularly when you consider that foreign travel is very common and that most British people tend to holiday in the same small subset of destinations.

You can apply the same logic to things like spotting an unlikely word in an unlikely place; opening a book in a random place and seeing something significant to you; picking up the phone before it rings; having a person in your head and then suddenly seeing them; having anything in your head and then suddenly coming across it unexpectedly... What you have to think about is all the times the coincidences don't happen. You mosey on through your life, having random thoughts, opening books, etc etc, and these small moments all occur a lot of times. Most of the time they pass without event and you don't even notice their passing. Occasionally small pieces of your life collide. Given all the millions of opportunities there are, it's bound to happen from time to time. It's not unlikely - or even amazing - at all.

Sorry.

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Jon Corby
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Jon Corby » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:55 pm

What a patronising post Alice.

I think everyone's aware of that, but it's probably still interesting when a one-in-a-million chance happens, isn't it? Even if it's actually your millionth go at it (without realising it).

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Kirk Bevins
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Kirk Bevins » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:58 pm

Jon Corby wrote:What a patronising post Alice.

I think everyone's aware of that, but it's probably still interesting when a one-in-a-million chance happens, isn't it? Even if it's actually your millionth go at it (without realising it).
Hear hear.

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Lesley Hines
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Lesley Hines » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:15 pm

I needed a new liver at 36 hours notice, and got one. It helped that I was put straight to the top of the list in Europe, but I was still bloody lucky.
Lowering the averages since 2009

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Charlie Reams
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Charlie Reams » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:17 pm

Lesley Hines wrote:I needed a new liver at 36 hours notice, and got one. It helped that I was put straight to the top of the list in Europe, but I was still bloody lucky.
Cool story bro. What nationality was your liver giver, in the end?

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Derek Hazell
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Derek Hazell » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:24 pm

Charlie Reams wrote:Cool story bro. What nationality was your liver giver, in the end?
Ginger.
Living life in a gyratory circus kind of way.

Gavin Chipper
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Re: Coincidence

Post by Gavin Chipper » Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:49 pm

I found out on Facebook that my then girlfriend's cousin was going out with an ex next-door neighbour of mine who I was good friends with. Also this was another part of the country - he'd long since moved well away from me. That's the best coincidence ever.

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