Cambridge Coincidences Collection

Well I Never!

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

Real dementia muddles and coincidences

Mum has alzheimer's disease, so it was initially tricky piecing the beginning of this story together. One evening last Summer, a man (Albert) phoned Mum asking for Brian (my Dad). Mum said sorry but he was very unwell and was in hospital (also with alzheimer's disease). Albert was devastated and said he had no idea. Mum asked him how they knew each other and Albert said "through Church". Mum was confused as she would know any church friend too, but she was certain that she did not know Albert.

Coincidence inside a Coincidence

I spent the Christmas holiday (1988) with a friend who lives in Spain. As it was the first Christmas I had spent away from my family I promised my Daughter I would phone her on Christmas morning (she lives in Rushden, Northants). I was staying in the basement flat of my friend's villa, which also served as his 'Radio Shack' as he is a Radio Ham. On Christmas morning as I was dressing, my friend came into the flat to use his radio to wish his friends from all over the world a Merry Christmas.

Family Coincidence

About 32 years ago, aged 18, I was working in an advertising agency in Chancery Lane, London EC4 and I was calling a paper in Fleet Street, to place an advert also in the same area. When the phone connected I got a cross line between my father who was working in E1 talking to my mother who was living in Chigwell Essex. I have never forgotten it!!

The Wife and 2x Fathers

My wife was born on exactly the same day and same year my parents got married in October 1982. As if this wasn't strange enough, both of our fathers have the first names "Christopher John" and both were born in 1947.

Mother-in-law same name

I came to the UK over 13 years ago for work and met my future husband the first week I arrived from USA. On our first date he took me to Stratford upon Avon for a picnic and I had my passport with me. He asked to look at it and that's when we discovered I had his mothers first and middle name Patricia Ann. My maiden name at the time was Wilson and he was shocked that I had his mothers exact name and said his mothers maiden name was Wolsey giving us the exact same initials PAW before marriage.

Random connection in small Oregon town

Holiday last year. Visiting Portland, Oregon, from Glasgow, Scotland. Hosted by local PR people. One of whom tells me that my accent reminds her of a guy she knows in a small town call Bend. Four days later, I'm in Bend, walking down street with PR girl who spots this other Scottish guy, shouts him over. We get talking. He has lived in Oregon for 20 years. He comes from the small village in Scotland right next tothe small village I grew up in. My mother was his school dinner lady in a school in Scotland of just 200 kids. And my sister was in his class.

Heard & Read Words

I tend to have the TV or radio on when I'm reading a book, magazine or internet, or when I'm writing a blog for my website. For several years I've noted that just as I read (or write) a word someone will say it on the programme that's on. Context is irrelevant. Say I'm reading a Terry Pratchett novel while "listening" to NPR's "All Things Considered." As my eyes see the word, let's say "coincidence" the reporter on NPR says "coincidence". Neither sentence has anything to do with the other.

Cat coincidence

Here's another one. I had a cat named Saki, after the author HH Munro. Saki the cat died on Munro's birthday. Unfortunately for the sake of coincidence she had not been born on the date of his death in WWI. But I have always wondered what the odds were that she died on 18 December.

MRS DIANA H

a close relative had died and we were trying to contact a next of kin who was on holiday in florida. no-one knew her contact address or phone number so we had given up. our daughter and family were also on holiday and had gone to an office to collect the key to their accomodation. while waiting, my daughter became aware of another couple. on hearing the man's voice, she enquired if his name was Jim.(she had only met him once before, several years earlier at a family wedding )it was him and he was the husband of the lady we were trying to contact.

death in the family

a close relative had died and we were trying to contact a next of kin who was on holiday in florida. no-one knew her contact address or phone number so we had given up. our daughter and family were also on holiday and had gone to an office to collect the key to their accomodation. while waiting, my daughter became aware of another couple. on hearing the man's voice, she enquired if his name was Jim.(she had only met him once before, several years earlier at a family wedding )it was him and he was the husband of the lady we were trying to contact.

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