My wife introduced a theory to me years ago. She observed that certain odd themes tend to repeat themselves in high frequency over the course of about a week, then disappear back into obscurity.
Her theory was that if you apply numerology to these coincidences, you could translate chance into good fortune, e.g. using the coincidences to pick lottery numbers.
It was like she planted a seed. I started to notice coincidences, which led me to wonder if they’d always been there and I was finally connecting the dots. For example, I can’t tell you the last time I heard John Denver’s “Take Me Home, Country Roads” before last week. Best guess is back in the ’80s.
Last week, I heard it twice. Once as sung by actors on “My Name is Earl”, then a couple days later while shopping at Fred Meyer.
This stuff happens pretty often, at least to me. I refer to these as bugs in the matrix because they don’t really make sense to me. If there’s a reason behind “Take Me Home, Country Road”, I’m totally missing it. Trying to discern meaning from these coincidences is a lot like trying to interpret dreams, impossible and maddening.
So, what constitutes a theme? These are highly subjective in nature, but I think anything that causes you pause when it’s repeated counts, songs, movies, words, names, any objects, etc.
My theory is that themes exist all around us, but we don’t notice them. I know, way off topic, but something interesting to me.
Does this happen to you? Sound off in comments.
Update: I had one this evening. I walked into a BBQ place, close to my house, reminding myself of a line from “The Lost Boys”, which I recently watched for the first time in probably 10 years. The quote is “One thing that always bothered me about Santa Carla . . . all the damn vampires.” Some places in Portland give you that vibe.
I walk in the BBQ place, and immediately Echo and Bunneymen’s cover of “People Are Strange” comes on the radio. I have only ever heard that song in “The Lost Boys” and on that movie’s soundtrack. This is a bit of stretch, but it fits the MO.