CAN THIS BE TRUE?

My oldest daughter Sallie sent me a link to a truly astounding coincidence.  What I first saw was from You Tube: /www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_j3bVYwAp4   It seemed real, but I noticed that the date was April 1, so I felt forced to discount it.  An awful lot of people get off on playing tricks. I don’t want this site to be spoofy. I have read instances of identical twins separated at birth whose lives turn out so extremely similar that it’s hard to believe, but then genetics itself is pretty surprising.

Sallie and Nan at the airport. New Years Eve, 20152016

Then she sent me a link to a  radio program about the incident:  /www.wnyc.org/radio/#/ondemand/91686    and   http://www.radiolab.org/story/91686-a-very-lucky-wind/#commentlist

Here are several excerpts from some  of the 67 responses that describe the coincidence:

Yu from Anaheim:

There was a story of Laura Buxton who lives in England. It seems that in June 2001 she released a helium filled balloon during celebrations for her grandparents’ gold wedding anniversary in Blurton, Staffordshire, England. Attached to the balloon was her name and address and a note asking the finder to write back. Ten days later she received a reply. The balloon had been found by another Laura Buxton in the garden hedge of her home in Pewsey, Wiltshire, 140 miles away. One Laura was 10 years the other was 9 years 6 months. Both had three year old black Labradors, a guinea pig, and a rabbit. When they met t hey were the same height, had the same hair color, and were dressed in similar outfits, both wearing pink jumpers and jeans. They each had brought, unbeknownst to the other, their guinea pig with them to the meeting. Both guinea pigs were brown and each had an orange patch on their bottom. Each girl had a pet rabbit – a gray one, and a 3-year-old black Labrador .

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Li Zhi from Cleveland

There’s so many holes in this story. Most obvious is that Jad claims that the girls are both 10, yet previously the first admitted she was only 9. Jad also admits that he selected from a long list of traits those the girls shared. Not one comment here suggests that the TV show they met on for the first time did the same thing. Do you really think they both decided to bring pets onto the stage without any prompting? Really? How about their clothes, chance or influenced by the producers? How many guinea pigs did each girl own? There’s a lot of missing information and yet a lot of comments on this ancient thread aren’t interested in finding out the facts, they want to believe what they want to believe, damn the facts. I wonder which of the girls, the one studying science and the other liberal arts, I wonder which was the one believing in miracles. The other was, not so strangely, silent – I’d hope that the science oriented mind would be more interested in facts. But I’d be stereotyping…

Jun. 17 2016 04:01 PM
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Gene Yakub from Italy

For those who believe in coincidences these types of events, and similar ones which can be placed under “coincidence”, seem wondrously unrelated and unexpected. But to those, like myself, who know that reincarnation is a reality, everything happens as it is supposed to, as has been chose by us before each reincarnation.
How can it make sense that as we look around us, there is a continuity and a unity even in diversity that has been there since the year dot, all fits together perfectly, everything sustains everything else – or it did before we interfered.
Yet we humans supposedly live a comparatively brief life span and all our experiences and knowledge disappear into thin air with that body? Why would that be true of the most sophisticated component of all creation?
What is human life about then, what is the purpose of being alive? Just to waffle along and accumulate book knowledge so as to earn money? No, life is for learning and growing, to rid ourselves of the negative consequences of the mistaken choices we previously made (the Law of Action and Reaction, Cause and Effect) by having as many other opportunities as necessary to understand where we went wrong and correct ourselves so we can move on.
Destiny v. Freedome of Choice? No versus, they act in tandem when we have to make choices every single moment of our lives because we don’t remember what happened in a previous life except during the transition stage between one life another when we make our choices for the next one.

Dec. 04 2013 01:43 PM
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WatchTheClock from Up

The balloon story was really interesting, but I couldn’t help but think of all of the wildlife destruction that is caused by balloons.
PLEASE don’t release a balloon. Balloon releases are “celebrating by littering.”
Dolphins, whales, turtles, and many other marine species, as well as terrestrial animals such as cows, dogs, sheep, tortoises, birds and other animals have all been hurt or killed by balloons.
More information here: http://balloonsblow.org/impacts-on-wildlife-and-environment

Jul. 14 2012 02:17 PM

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Gina Mireault from Vermont

I also teach Research Methods in Psychology as well as Developmental Psychology. In the latter, we explore the “uncanny” similarities between between identical twins who are reared apart. Researchers make the assumption that these similarities (e.g., using the same unusual toothpaste or drinking the same brand of beer) are genetically based, even though they would not apply such explanations to the same similarities found between total strangers (like the Laura’s in this edition of RL). I’ll use this segment in class to illustrate that coincidence works as a third variable in explaining such similarities, as well as to discuss the human tendency to “see patterns in randomness”. Thanks for an outstanding show!

Nov. 22 2009 09:21 PM
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Alexander Nekrasov from Purchase, NY

I have a logical explanation for this event. As a matter of fact I am convinced that the following has happened. Somebody who knows the second girl(or where the Buxton family lives)saw this balloon floating around and dropped it in front of her house not paying too much attention to the address. The fact that they turned out similar is in fact a coincidence, however this simple coincidence makes this event possible on the scale of the world population.

Nov. 27 2014 08:17 PM

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SNOPES

http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/trivia/buxton.asp

Indeed, a farmer in Milton Lilbourne, Wiltshire — about 140 miles away from Staffordshire — had found the balloon in a hedge adjoining his property. He was about to discard the deflated balloon in the rubbish when he spotted the name “Laura Buxton” on the attached note, and knowing his neighbors had a daughter by that name, he delivered the balloon to their home instead.

But the neighbors’ daughter wasn’t the same Laura Buxton who had sent the balloon winging on its way from Staffordshire; she was a different girl who coincidentally bore the same given name and surname as the originator of the message. (Contrary to the account reproduced in the “Example” block above, the balloon wasn’t found in the Buxtons’ back yard, and both Lauras were not 10 years old at the time — oneof the girls was just short of her tenth birthday.)

Laura Buxton #2 in Milton Lilbourne, Wiltshire, wrote to Laura Buxton #1 in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, to inform her that her balloon had been found and report the unusual coincidence of that it had ended up in the hands of someone with the very same name. The two girls got in touch by telephone, and the coincidence was amusing and harmless enough that the girls’ parents arranged for them to meet face-to-face, whereupon they discovered a number of similarities beyond the two girls’ sharing a name: the Lauras were the same height, had the same build and eye color, both were fair-haired, both wore jeans with pink jumpers to their initial meeting, and both had grey rabbits, guinea pigs, and three-year-old black Labradors as pets. Both girls brought their guinea pigs (which were of the same color with similar markings) to their initial meeting.

Outside of the similarity in the girls’ names (and they didn’t have terribly unusual names), much of this tale isn’t all that remarkable: it’s hardly amazing that two girls of similar age would be the same height and build, or that two girls from the same geographic region would have the same color of hair and eyes, or that two young girls would keep the same types of animals at home (since Labrador retriever dogs, rabbits, and guinea pigs are all very common household pets). Nonetheless, the balloon coincidence led to the two Laura Buxtons’ striking up a friendship that was unlikely to have begun without it, and the girls have kept in touch ever since, with the mother of Laura Buxton #1 reporting nine years later that:

[The] Laura Buxton that released the balloon is my daughter and she is now 19 years old. The girls are still very good friends and meet up as and when time and commitments allow them — in fact, they are meeting again before they both go back to University. We have no idea why this happened but it did and out of it has come a wonderful friendship.

About Nan Mykel

At 79, I was just about to stop keeping a journal, but that felt like accepting that growth was finished. I don't want to be finished, yet! I'm 80 now, and struggling to communicate with you, if you'll come and set awhile. P.S. My how time flies! I'm 82 now.
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2 Responses to CAN THIS BE TRUE?

  1. Carpentier, Sallie says:

    Here is the radio show I heard it on, it has a nice exploration of randomness that you might find interesting.
    https://www.wnyc.org/radio/#/ondemand/91686

    FYI, the Snopes report. The balloon thing happened in June of 2001. http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/trivia/buxton.asp

    Like

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