One in A Million Coincidences - Part 2
From impeccable timing to totally mind-blowing historic events, here are some one in a million coincidences you’ll have to see to believe.Stories
You don’t need to believe in fate to accept that some spooky happenings are so coincidental that they just can’t be explained. From impeccable timing to totally mind-blowing historic events, here are some one in a million coincidences you’ll have to see to believe.
Mark Twain and Halley's Comet
American writer Mark Twain will go down in history for more than just his life’s work after he successfully managed to predict his own death in one seriously spooky coincidence. Twain was born on November 30th, 1835, shortly after the historic appearance of Halley’s Comet which only passes by Earth every 75 years.
In 1909, the writer famously declared that: “it will be the greatest disappointment of my life if I don’t go out with Halley’s comet. The Almighty has said, no doubt: now here are these two unaccountable freaks; they came in together, they must go out together.”
The following year, Halley’s comet returned to Earth brighter than ever before, and sure enough, Twain died of a heart attack a day after its arrival on April 21st, 1910.
Dennis the Menace
Dennis the Menace is a well-loved cartoon character, and the blonde-haired, dungaree-clad chump and his dog Ruff have got into all sorts of trouble over the years, strikingly similar to, well, Dennis the Menace, the spiky black-haired boy in his signature striped shirt.
Back in 1951, American cartoonist Hank Ketchum devised the idea for Dennis the Menace based on his own son, and the mayhem-prone Dennis Mitchell first appeared in US newspapers on March 12, 1951.
What Ketchum didn’t know was that across the pond in the UK the renowned Beano comic strip was also debuting their latest cartoon: the mischievous Dennis the Menace and his dog Gnasher.
The characters appeared just days apart, and despite their striking similarities, there’s no way either creator could’ve been aware of the other. Both Dennis Mitchell and the UK’s Dennis and Gnasher went on to be hugely successful in their own right, but few are aware of this truly unbelievable coincidence.
A Fishy Predicament
They say curiosity kills the cat, but it seems like curiosity almost killed the fish in a surprising photo taken after one devilish cat swiped the bowl off the table. Cats can be mischievous at the best of times, but this unlucky pet owner learned the hard way not to leave their feline companion alone when there’s a tempting goldfish swimming around just feet away.
In one incredible stroke of luck, the bowl landed upside down, containing the water, and, most importantly, the goldfish itself. I would love to see how they went about solving this tricky predicament though.
Most hopeless romantics believe in the power of fate to bring them their soul mate, and you might have a hard time denying it after hearing this next story. Esther and Paul Grachan had been dating for a while when Paul asked Esther to be his girlfriend.
Later that day, Paul was buying lunch at a sandwich shop when he noticed a dollar bill with the name ‘Esther’ written on it in pencil, so he pocketed it to frame it as a gift for his girlfriend. When he presented her with the gift, she was speechless, but it wasn’t until years later after the pair were married that things got even more coincidental.
After rediscovering the framed dollar, Esther revealed that she had actually written on the note after a heartbreak in her teenage years. Esther swore that she would marry the man to return the dollar to her, so it’s a good job Paul fancied a sandwich that day.
Every amateur photographer has one winning shot in mind, and for Bennet Christiansen that goal was capturing a lightning strike in action. Christiansen spent over a year waiting for the perfect moment, and when he was walking down at the harbor during a storm one evening the opportunity finally arose.
The final shot alone is pretty impressive, but it wasn’t until he got home that his brother noticed something in the bottom left corner which made this a one-in-a-million photograph. One of the boats docked at the harbor is literally called ‘perfect timing’. When was the last time you got congratulated by a boat?
The famous saying “an eye for an eye” certainly applies to this next crazy coincidence, which took place when two one-eyed pups met their doppelgangers at the store. The adorable cavalier spaniel on the left, named Flirt (who I hope gets her name from the fact she’s constantly winking) was enjoying her ride in the shopping cart when she bumped into a near-identical spaniel who also happened to be missing the opposite eye.
This coincidence either formed a strong bond between the two or caused some serious tension, because both dogs have something the other wants.
John Parr and George Ellison
Over 700,000 British soldiers were killed during the first world war between 1914 and 1918 and their commemorative headstones can be found all over Europe, but there is one truly remarkable coincidence in Belgium’s Saint Symphorien cemetery.
Buried just 15 feet apart are Private John Parr, the first British soldier killed on August 21st, 1914, and George Ellison, who was killed at 9:30 am before the armistice became effective at 11 am on November 11th, 1918.
By pure coincidence, their historic headstones are now only separated by a small stretch of grass, and the two even face each other like symbolic bookends to one terrible chapter in British history.
Why Did The Chicken Cross The Road?
We’ve all heard the classic joke “Why did the chicken cross the road?” but one lucky driver will now know the answer for definite after snapping this hilarious photo.
What are the odds of stopping at a red light only to watch a chicken strut its way across the street? Most people would wait a lifetime for a coincidence like this one to come along.
Anne Parrish Book Coincidence
Sometime in the 1920s, American novelist Anne Parrish was browsing bookshops with her husband while on holiday in Paris when she picked up a worn copy of ‘Jack Frost and Other Stories’. Parish explained to her husband that she used to have one just like it as a child, and seeing the book bought back many fond memories.
When her husband opened the cover, though, he was surprised to find an inscription that read “Anne Parish, 209 Weber Street, Colorado Springs”. It was, by pure chance, the exact copy she owned as a child.
The Rare Quadruple Egg Yolk
The quadruple yolk in the image below is one seriously rare sight, especially considering the chances of a double egg being laid are about 0.1%. In fact, "eggsperts" suggest that the chances of this four-yolk phenomenon happening are 11 billion to 1, making this one insanely lucky coincidence.
Poor Richard Parker
Edgar Allan Poe may be one of the most famous writers in history, but he only ever wrote one novel in 1838, titled ‘The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket’. In the story, four men are shipwrecked and eventually resort to cannibalism to survive. They decide to draw straws, and the man who pulls the short straw – named Richard Parker – is eaten.
46 years later, on July 5, 1884, in the real world, a yacht named ‘The Mignonette’ was shipwrecked on its way from England to Australia, and its four survivors drifted on a lifeboat 700 miles from land.
One of the men fell overboard, drank seawater and quickly became delirious, so the remaining sailors decided to eat him out of desperation. This unlucky man’s name was also Richard Parker, and his shipmates were eventually charged with his murder after being rescued
Mosquito Killed By a Dart
Unless you’re a seasoned darts player the odds are pretty stacked against you when it comes to scoring a bullseye, but one person managed an even more impressive shot when they somehow speared a pesky mosquito with their dart.
It's not confirmed if the unfortunate insect was taking a breather on the board or whether it actually flew into the path of the dart. Either way, at least there’s photo evidence.
Baby Falling On The Same Person Twice
On a normal day in 1937, a man named Joseph Fidlock was walking down the street in Detroit when he was suddenly struck on the head by a large object. A baby had fallen from a fourth-story window above and Fidlock managed to cushion the blow, so neither sustained any major injuries.
A year later, Fidlock was sweeping an alley in the very same area when a 2-year-old boy named David Thomas also fell from a four-story window and was saved by Fidlock. One thing is for sure, if you were a lousy mother in the 1930s you could rely on this unlucky man to save the day!
Choosing an outfit in the morning can be tricky enough with factors like the weather and the appropriate dress code to consider, but it’s not very often we have to think about the chances of our clothes blending into our surroundings.
By pure coincidence one girl picked out a top which lines up perfectly with the lines on her milkshake cup, right down to the order of the colors. I bet she had a hard time telling people she didn’t actually work there that day.
CLIF Bars are delicious and nutritious energy bars perfect for adventurists, and the ubiquitous packaging, which shows a rock climber scaling a nauseating cliff, was inspired by a hike taken by the creator in 1990.
Imagine the luck of the hiker who stopped for a snack break only to realize that the rock in front of them seems to be the exact same rock from the CLIF wrapper, right down to the mountain range on the horizon. This picture-perfect photo is definitely one for the books, and it’s lucky the sky was blue, too.
The Will and William West Case
Back in 1903, a man named William West was sent to Leavenworth prison for committing a small crime, but upon his arrival, he was surprised to be told that he had already been serving prison time there since 1901 for first-degree murder.
At the time, The Bertillion System for criminal identification only relied on mugshots and a series of facial, skull and bodily measurements to register inmates at the prison. Although Mr. West had never served time before, another man – also named William West – was serving a life sentence, and his records were so identical that the two men could’ve been twins.
However, there was no relation between them. After some confusion, prison staff realized that they were dealing with two different men, and newly developed fingerprint identification systems were used in prisons across the US from then on. This is one coincidence that changed history for the better.
A day at the beach is fun for everyone, but the girl in the image below must’ve had quite the shock when most of her body miraculously vanished in front of everyone. This wacky camouflage coincidence is a matter of perspective as the shoreline and sandy beach match up perfectly with the design.
Some people spend forever planning the perfect proposal, and the grandest of gestures really don’t hold back on the romance, but nothing could be more symbolic of true love than this next coincidence.
Becky McCabe and Jessa Gillaspie met several years ago at grad school, and their first date was at Memphis Zoo. When the couple decided to return to the zoo to relive the early days, Becky saw it as the perfect opportunity to pop the question, so she arranged for her friends to pretend to take photos of them at the entrance as she hid the engagement ring behind her back.
As she got down on one knee, though, Jessa scrambled inside her purse and pulled out a ring she’d bought for Becky for the exact same day. What are the chances?!
Disney Photo Shows Couple Together 15 Before They Met
You’re probably wondering what makes the vintage Disneyland photo below so unusual, besides the strangely creepy life-size Mr. Smee from Peter Pan, but it’s solid proof that it really is a small world after all.
Alex and Donna Voutsinas were sorting through old photos for a wedding slideshow the night before the big day when Donna pulled out a photo of her visiting Disneyland in 1980 at 5 years old. When Alex examined the photo a little closer, he was gobsmacked to recognize his father on Main Street in the background, who is even pushing 3-year-old Alex in a stroller!
Not only were the couple in the same place at the same time 15 years before they even met, but they were lucky enough to be snapped in a photo together, proving that no coincidence is too big.
If you were amazed at these one in a million coincidences, you might want to read this article about bizarre historical coincidences and part 1 of this series. Thanks for reading!