Once when I was in Vegas playing Twenty-One, the dealer got three blackjacks in a row. The people at the table started grumbling. The pit boss came over and said "hey, that could even happen in an honest game."
Fluke, a new book by mathematician Joseph Mazur. People look at mysterious coincidences and often see something deeper, though if they properly analyze them they might not be so mystified.
Still, as Mazur admits, such moments are fascinating. So I thought I'd mention the two biggest coincidences in my life I can remember. Perhaps others were just as big, but these are the two that stick with me.
1) Years ago I was walking around Ann Arbor, thinking about an old friend from high school. Next thing you know, I bump into him. There was no reason to expect him to be there. He didn't live there and had not attended the University of Michigan. But there he was, nonetheless. The next week I flew to Los Angeles. Walking around Venice Beach, I ran into him again. Once again, no reason to expect him to be there--he didn't live anywhere near California.
Maybe these two stories are so memorable because they're double coincidences.
By the way, when I was looking at new books in the library and saw Fluke: The Math And Myth Of Coincidence, next on the bookshelf was The Math Myth. What are the odds two books using the same play on words would be published around the same time?