Tag Archives: coincidence

Rebus and Marillion and the Passing of Time

Where to start? As usual i have a lot to say and a feeling that much of it is boring. So I will cut out what I was going to say about the Inspector Rebus stories on TV and go straight to Marillion.  Their song Kayleigh was played on the pop quiz earlier in the evening and, as ever, took me back to an earlier place in my life. That was probably what induced me to watch Rebus, despite my opinion that John Hannah as Rebus is one of the worst casting choices of all time. Great actor, great character, but put them together and it didn’t work. And then, the dodgy club owner came to the screen. I thought “He’s familiar.” and he was. It was the singer better known as Fish, who wrote and sang sang Kayleigh before leaving Marillion for a career of solo work and acting.

I’ve always, by the way, thought that singers with nicknames, are a touch pretentious. This probably seems a little unfair from a blogger known as Quercus, but it seems to happen on wordPress – we end up being known by others by nicknames relating to our blog titles. That never seems pretentious. However, in fairness, they are nicknames given by others, not ones we give ourselves.  I am now going to quote Fish on the subject of his nickname. I do see his point, and probably forgive him.

“With a real name of Derek William Dick, it became very necessary to find a nickname as quickly as possible.”

Yes, I can see that, though it could have been worse. We had an Andrew Dick at school, or A Dick, as he used to appear on lists.  It must have all been rather wearing for him after a while, because the humour displayed by children between the ages of 11 and 18 is neither subtle nor varied. To be fair, mine hasn’t really move on much since then.

Do you ever get those days when something takes you back in time?

Strange Meetings

In 1932 a Mrs Reginald Hargreaves, then aged 80, met a man called Peter Llewellyn Davies in a bookshop. I was intrigued by it when I found out, and John Logan actually wrote a play about it.

Mrs Hargreaves was, you see, better known to history as Alice Liddell and young Llewellyn Davies was the inspiration behind Peter Pan.

I’ve always been interested in such things, though I suppose some of them aren’t as surprising as I think. When Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen they were both in the Army, and both tortured poetic souls so I don’t suppose it’s too surprising they met at Craiglockhart. There’s a play about that too, and a book.

Sassoon also knew Robert Graves, though that’s well known. It’s also well known that they fell out. What I didn’t know was that they met again in the 1950s when taking their sons to Oundle School. I’ve often driven through Oundle, but had never known that.

Clark Gable and Jimmy Stewart both flew combat missions from England during the war, once meeting up for a photo-opportunity. Gable flew from Polebrook and Molesworth, neither of which are too far from Oundle. I’m struggling to find a reference for the meeting, but you can find a photo here, where Pacific Paratrooper comes up trumps. This shows you don’t need the internet when you have bloggers.

I suppose the chances of two Hollywood stars being photographed together when serving overseas is quite high.

Same goes for the chances of two academics with literary leanings joining the same literary society, as J. J. R. Tolkien  and C. S. Lewis did with The Inklings. It’s a small pool, so the chances were probably good.

There’s a good article on probability and coincidence here. I’ve actually been in a room with around 75 people and done the birthday one – we had three matches.