What a Coincidence!

“Coincidence is God’s way of remaining anonymous.”
― Albert Einstein, The World as I See It

This week started with an amazing coincidence that sent chills down my spine. On Monday I posted a message to Meghan, Emily, and Sarah asking them to wear jewelry on Tuesday as a way to honor their granny who died on February 26th, 2010. I encouraged them to wear pearls, diamonds, necklaces, and rings because we all know how much Granny enjoyed her jewelry. Then on Tuesday, John received a call from the assisted living facility informing him they found a ring in their safe that belonged to his mother. The call came on the anniversary of her death, on the day I’d asked the girls to not only remember her, but to remember her by wearing jewelry. That call sent chills down my spine.

Well, it turns out the ring wasn’t actually hers. I’m sure they’re right that it was at one time in her possession, but she probably traded a piece of her jewelry for this ring or maybe just picked it up and wore it for awhile. Nevertheless, the coincidence of these events occurring can’t help but make you wonder how these things happen…and, they make for a great story.

Then yesterday on our drive to Palatka we heard an episode of the radio program, This American Life, called No Coincidence, No Story. What a coincidence!

Here’s an example of the type of stories included in the 60 minute episode:

Blind Man

About ten years ago, Jon Schmidt — who lives in Philadelphia — took a business trip to Boston, working out of his company’s new Boston office. One day, sitting at his desk, Jon noticed a piece of paper curling out from behind the vertical blinds.

“I got up and pulled the blinds closed and then flipped them to the reverse side,” says Jon. “There, cut into strips and pasted to the back of the blinds, was a very large photo of my identical twin.”

It turns out that years earlier, the company that Jon’s twin brother, Jeff, worked for had leased the same office space. As a prank, Jeff’s co-workers had planted his photo on the back of the vertical blinds, and no one had removed the picture when the company moved out. Jon was working in his twin brother’s same building, in the same office, at the same desk, with a life-sized picture of his brother on the back of the blinds.

You can read more coincidence stories at This American Life. Better yet, listen to the archive of the program at This American Life Archives. The stories of Esther’s dollar bill and the one about Stephen’s mother-in-law’s bombshell send that chill down your spine while the coins in the shower can only make you chuckle.

I love a good coincidence! Click the comment link if you’d like to share your own coincidence story.

 “Coincidences mean you’re on the right path.”
― Simon Van Booy, Love Begins in Winter: Five Stories


Granny Update

Granny wearing her jewelry before playing kickball.
Granny wearing her jewelry before playing kickball.

John received the strangest call this afternoon from the Assisted Living Facility where his mom lived. They called to let him know they found a ring that belonged to his mom locked in their safe. Today, on the third anniversary of her death…after I wrote about her love of jewelry yesterday…too strange!


I think she approves of us wearing jewelry in her memory today.


Be Like Granny

Granny loved her jewelry. She loved bracelets, rings, earrings, and necklaces; and she enjoyed wearing it. Today I want to encourage you to be like Granny by wearing your jewelry as well.

Whether it was a ring made from the sapphires she mined in North Carolina or diamond earrings, Granny wore her jewelry to work, to meetings, to church, and just around the house. I heard her say she felt naked without any jewelry. In fact, one time we flew down to visit Granny for the weekend and were driving to Lighthouse Point to visit my parents when she suddenly realized that she had forgotten to put on her earrings. She insisted that we stop at the mall on the way so she could buy a pair of earrings. I assured her that my parents would not notice if she wasn’t wearing earrings, but  she wouldn’t be comfortable without them so we stopped at the Pompano Fashion Square a couple of miles from my parent’s house so she could purchase a pair of gold earrings; and she was right. She immediately became more relaxed as soon as she put them on.

If you look back at pictures of Granny you’ll notice she’s always wearing a necklace…usually a gold chain but sometimes one with a stone or pearls. Even when she moved into an assisted living facility Granny wore her jewelry. She greeted us on every visit not only adorned in her standard jewelry but with additional pins. It brought her great joy everyday.


Many people suggested that we not let her keep it when she moved…warning it would be lost or stolen; and they were right. Eventually she was no longer able to put in the earrings and they eventually disappeared. Later other pieces were missing, but we weren’t about to take it from her. Remember, she told us years earlier that she felt naked without it. We knew she was more relaxed and confident when she wore her jewelry. Moving out of her home was the time she most needed the security of a gold chain.

I know there are risks when you wear gold or silver or pearls or diamonds in public; but why buy jewelry if you don’t wear it? Wear it to work. Wear it on a date. Wear it when shopping. Wear it around the house. Of course, you need to take it off when you sleep or shower or swim or exercise but wear your jewelry often.

I haven’t always done this, but my Granny was a lot like your Granny in this respect. She too wore her jewelry…a diamond necklace…everyday. She wore it even though she spent most days at home where no one saw it simply because she enjoyed it; and I’ve let that necklace sit in the jewelry box for safe keeping for more than thirty years. Yes, it’s safe; but no one has seen it or enjoyed it. That doesn’t make sense.

In remembrance of Granny I’d like for you to proudly wear your jewelry tomorrow on the third anniversary of her death. Wear the good stuff and maybe you’ll decide to wear it more often…not just on special occasions but just because.

Don’t stash away your favorite jewelry in a jewelry box or safe. Enjoy it. Wear it. Be like Granny.