Cambridge Coincidences Collection

Well I Never!

Professor David Spiegelhalter of Cambridge University wants to know about your coincidences!

Sibling Birthdays

I'm the eldest daughter of six children (5 girls, 1 boy). My dob is 1/11/57 (natural birth). One of my sister's dob is 1/11/58 (no2 in family - natural birth) and another sister's dob is 2/11/68 (no5 in family - Caesarian Section).

Wrong bus route

When I was younger I used to walk to school each day there and back. One morning as I turned left off the busy main road down a quieter suburban street I was thinking to myself how quiet this street was. Further, I wondered why the bus didn't take this route as it would make the route a lot shorter. Lost in thought I considered that it must be rather nice for the residents not to have buses thundering up and down their street. No sooner had I thought this, a number 1 bus went racing passed me stopping me in my tracks dumbfounded.

Multiple coincidences

In 1966, two years after I married my wife, Anne, we ended up one day visiting a village called Knot End on a day out with Anne's parents. Anne's mother said that her cousin Lottie lived in the village having retired there and bought a bungalow with her husband Jack. We decided to look them up. I did not know them at all but after the initial welcome, during the conversation ( about family naturally), it turned out that my mother-in-law's cousin Lottie was married to my father's cousin Jack.

Births Deaths & Marriages

My sister's youngest child, a daughter and my eldest child, also a daughter were born on exactly the same day. My father was born on New Years day, my sister on St Patrick's day and my youngest daughter on St George's day.

Would we have married anyway?

Just before I was born my mother's eldest sister married a widower with two sons. Douglas was 4 years older than me and Gordon 8 years. We did not live very near to each other but were brought up as cousins Soon after the war started Gordon, by then engaged, went into the Royal Engineers but soon after being sent out to the Middle East he got a "Dear John" letter. Later Douglas went into the RAF and I wrote to them both. In 1942 Douglas was killed over Germany and perhaps that made me write to Gordon a little more.

Surely thats very strange.....

Back in 1975 I was working in an office in Regent Street.

Examination coincidence

On Friday 13th January I had taken my Merchant Navy Officer of the Watch oral examination at the Maritime and Coastguard Agency building in Southampton. I passed the exam, and then set off on the drive home to Formby, near Liverpool, a 250 mile journey. When I arrived in Formby I stopped for a pint in my local pub. I was at the bar talking to my friend about my exam, when a man approached me asking if I had just done my OOW oral exam as he had overheard me talking about it. It turned out that he was an MCA examiner who knew the person who examined me by name.

Saved from being a matching pair at interview

In 1972 I travelled overnight to attend a job interview. There was to be only one other candidate. On the morning of the interview I was annoyed to discover that I had forgotten to pack the bold striped jumper that went with my outfit and I had to make do with another one. On arriving for the interview the other girl was wearing the same bold striped jumper I should have been wearing - how silly would we have looked - a lucky escape from a strange coincidence (I got the job.)

Digital clock numbers

Often when I awake in the night my bedside digital clock shows times with repetitive numbers e.g. 2.22 or 4.44 etc. I canot detect any associated sound which could cause me to wake. I never win raffle ticket draws or any other chance. I do have a good sense of time of day and time span. I can usually correctly assess a persons character within five or so minutes of meeting them: worryingly so. Would I go up the side of a mountain with this person? Rarely is the answer yes.

Loads of different coincidences

1. I'm adopted - found out that sister I'd never met had an abortion on exact same day I had my first child. 2. I grew up in Lancashire and moved to Worcester in 1982. Discovered neighbour 5 doors away in Worcester used to live opposite me in Lancashire. 3. My Dad had physiotherapy treatment in Lancaster. Physiotherapist had relative who had previously lived in my house in Worcester. 4. As a student I worked/travelled in USA. In San Francisco I was watching street dancing then went to tourist office and signed visitors' book.