I’ve written about my encounters with coincidences. They seem to be regular occurrences in my otherwise predictable existence. The great psychoanalyst Carl Jung thought they were examples of what he called archetypes, vestiges in our subconscious of our primitive ancestors.
Last week, for example, the brakes on my Mitsubishi Lancer had started to grind, so I dropped it off at the Sears Auto-Center in the Chicago Ridge Mall. A oil change was due, and— not surprisingly for a car over 10 years old— a few other repairs were called for.
With more than a few hours to kill, I naturally gravitated to the nearest bookstore where I casually browsed among the American History offerings. I’d been captivated by the Ken Burns’ PBS saga on the Roosevelts and looked for the companion volume. Not seeing it, I went with a book about conspiracies by Brad Meltzer based on his History Channel series.
When I got to the check-out counter my curiosity was piqued by some card games on a nearby rack. I thought one of them would be perfect to while away the time with my grandson Holden whenever I picked him up from school and brought him to my place until his mom arrived.
The card game? Rock, Paper, Scissors. For 2 players. Ages 4 and up. Perfect.
I grabbed a bite to eat at the mall’s food mart, returned to check on the car, then took off on foot to kill more time at my mother-in-law’s condo a few blocks away. En route I stopped at a Walgreens to buy the Sun-Times; I figured the New York Times Crossword would be a pleasant diversion while my car underwent surgery. Wednesday’s usually is easier, but I was in no hurry.
I was moving along taking my time through the clues when …WHAT!…. 55 Across= Loser to paper? 4 letters. Of course, ‘rock’.
Now if I hadn’t bought the card game, I don’t think I would have automatically come up with that.