I must have mentioned this already. MUST HAVE.
So I made a movie. It'a about the Ogopogo.
This past weekend it was at the Mississauga Independent Film Festival where it won Best Feature.
I KNOW! Best Feature who would have guessed?
But it's pretty cool.
Before the screening I was the feature speaker at Cafe Skeptique in Toronto. That was fun and rather skeptic-light. In the end it was more "tell me about your movie" than "fill in some blanks about crypto-zoology for me."
Next week we have our World Premiere. Yeah yeah, how do you have a World Premiere that isn't your first public screening? I'm not going to bother with the tale here, but it does make some sense in the end.
The Premiere appropriately is going to be in the Okanagan where the Ogopogo myth originates.
I'll be doing the Kelowna Skeptics in the Pub the night following that - I'll post about that separately.
I expect it will be kind of skeptic-light too.
Anyways, preparing and doing all of that has kind of sidelined my more active skepticism - heck the Mississauga screening was on the same week as TAM8, so there was no way I could be there. Did you see the line-up of speakers? No skeptic-light there!
Speaking of skeptic-light...
Have you seen this?
It's cool. It's sweet. It's a heart warming co-incidence.
A married couple discover that when they were kids they were at Disney World on the same day. Not 30 feet from one another and they have a photo to prove it.
The husband is quoted as saying "“I got chills. It was just too much of a coincidence. It was fate.”
No. It wasn't.
It was extremely unlikely for any given couple. But when you start considering the sheer number of people in the world and all the places they might have been where a camera was taking pictures, it was bound to happen somewhere sometime. Being in the same place is not that remarkable.
My ex-fiancee and I met when we were in our early 30s. But check this string of coincidences. For one year in grade one she lived in the same town as me. My best friend from then (and now) sat beside her in school. She and I were pretty confident (but there is no photographic evidence to prove it) that we were in swimming lessons together during that year. When I went to university in a totally different city, one of the coffee shops I hung out at all the time... she worked at. With another good friend of mine. Neither of us actually remembered each other, but when I was introduced to her ex-boss (a roommate and friend of hers) he took one look at me and said "you used to hang our at Java all the time." I even spent a fair bit of time (possibly not while she worked there - we never did nail that down) at another trendy restaurant she worked at. Granted, we never lived in different countries. But that seems to me to be a fairly unlikely set of coincidences - especially as we remained oblivious of one another.
Anyway - back to the Disneyland couple. It is a great story. But fate? No.
How many couples, like myself and my ex have walked within feet of one another earlier in their lives but never had a photo to commemorate it? Or have had it happen at a time that would have in anyway triggered either of their memories? The answer is plenty.
Have you ever been on the other side of the country and just bumped into someone you knew who did not live there and had no reason connected to your reason (IE. You weren't attending the saem convention.) for being there? It has happened to me three times - twice with the exact same person. It can't be that unlikely if it happens that easily - or maybe I am the outlier here.
Heck, on this trip to Mississauga and Toronto I had an unlikely pair of coincidences happen.
1) On Friday night I was at the airport about to get on the red-eye, but first I had to do an interview about the film for a Calgary based radio show I did the interview and hopped on the plane. When I got to Toronto I recieved a text from Scott Gavura of Science Based Pharmacy (and Skeptic North and Science Based Medicine) suggesting we meet up for lunch. That fell through, but he did come to Cafe Skeptique. His was the first familiar face I saw in Toronto. But get this - the segment after mine on the radio show had been Scott. Neither of us had known that the other was going to be on the show when we recorded our interviews. Weird huh?
2) It had been 15 years since I had last been in Toronto. Indeed I think it was 15 years minus a day - certainly very close - possibly even to the day. Last time I had been there I had slept on the couch of my friend Shemina in a place near The Annex. Pretty much the only neighbourhood I knew at all in Toronto, and since then I'd forgotten the specifics of street names - which was what, where. Shortly after that Shemina and I lost complete touch with one another. So when I get off the subway in downtown Toronto I was really just following google maps directions to find the place where Cafe Skeptique was going to be. When I walked outside I immediately recognized that I was in The Annex. I had walked past that same subway station dozens of times. but never gone in. My first thought was "hey, Shemina used to live around the corner from here." And that was that. I went to Cafe Skeptique and then back out to Mississauga for the screening. When I got to my hotel room I went on Facebook and there was a Freind Request from Shemina. Seriously, what are the chances of that? On my way back to the airport on Monday I stopped at her new place and had dinner with her and her husband. It was not fate.