Cambridge Coincidences Collection

Well I Never!

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

phone box wrong number was for passer by

In the mid 80s I lived in south Birmingham and after the pub my friends and I would walk home past a row of shops and then peel off to our various houses. One day when walking home the public phone box on the row of shops was ringing (this was about 11.30 at night). One of our group decided to answer it for a laugh and when he answered it the call was for him!

United States Air Force

My name is Robert Jamieson and I emigrated from Glasgow to the United States in 1957. I enlisted in the United States Air Force and by 1959 I had attained the rank of Airman Second Class. My parents sent me Scottish newspapers and I read in one of them that a Scot from Ayr had emigrated to the United States and had enlisted in the United States Air Force and was then serving at a USAF base in England and had married an English girl. His name was Robert Jamieson and his rank was Airman Second Class. The gist of the story was that he had crossed the Atlantic twice to meet his future wife.

Drinks Party

Still recovering from the fact that our respective mother-in-laws had at the age of ten shared a cabin on a banana boat as they were evacuated to the West Indies, we just had to go to Barbados for our honeymoon. A friend of mine, Bill, heard about this and told me he had a house on Barbados and we must come and see him and gave me his phone number. I forget the exact number but let's say it was 26075.

United States Air Force

My name is Robert Jamieson and I emigrated from Glasgow to the United States in 1957. I enlisted in the United States Air Force and by 1959 I had attained the rank of Airman Second Class. My parents sent me Scottish newspapers and I read in one of them that a Scot from Ayr had emigrated to the United States and had enlisted in the United States Air Force and was then serving at a USAF base in England and had married an English girl. His name was Robert Jamieson and his rank was Airman Second Class. The gist of the story was that he had crossed the Atlantic twice to meet his future wife.

Lusitania survivors

I was walking my dogs in my local park in Northampton a few years ago when i got into conversation with a lady who i had seen several times,but never really talked to;she was wearing a Grand Canyon sweatshirt,so i said that as a teenager i had often stayed with my couisin in Arizona,and had been there.We got talking about trips to America,and Una (her name!) asked if i had ever been to New York,to which i replied that i had ,and in fact my mother had been born there.I went on to say that as a baby of 3 months she had come over on the Lusitania with her parents and siblings,and that all barring

town coincidence

In the RAF I was once based in Digby north of Sleaford,and for a time went out with a local girl.When I left the RAF I eventually went to a college in Essex,and my colleagues on the course knew I went to Sleaford at the weekend.A few years later I became a salesman and one night was staying in a hotel in Sleaford(I had stopped seeing the local girl some years before).Over breakfast at the hotel the receptionist gave me a letter addressed "Simon Meek, Sleaford"The people who had been on my college course were having a reunion and the only idea they had about my wherabouts was that at

Mother-in-laws early meeting!

I took my then girlfriend now wife of 30+ years home to meet my mother. On meeting you could sense that my mother was slightly twitchy about something but she couldn't work out why. She asked Julia, my girlfriend "What's your mothers name" and was told Topsy Woodwark which didn't mean anything to her at all. Then with no prompting and completely out of the blue my mother said "Elizabeth Glendinning" which blew Julia away because those were indeed her mother's christian and maiden names.

Taxi coincidence

In 2001 I got a temporary job in Melbourne. After getting out of the airport I got a taxi to take me to the house where I would be staying for the first couple of weeks. The following day I went to the office to meet the people I'd be working with. We went out for drinks after work. Still feeling a little jet lagged, I left early in the evening, flagged down a taxi outside the bar we were in and it happened to be the same taxi driver who had picked me up from the airport the previous evening!

Birthday coincidences

My sister's first daughter was born on my birth date and my daughter was born on the birth date of my wife's brother - so both uncle's had their first nieces born on their birth dates

I once met a professor of the public understanding of risk

A few years ago I went to a meeting in Cambridge. On the last evening I was dragged (willingly) to a talk about how J.S. Bach tuned his harpsichord. By some amazing coincidence I bumped into Prof. Spiegelhalter, who is now asking about coincidences. (in context this is more remarkable than it sounds, although not really much more)

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