At about 0:30 a.m. on November 27th 2010 I saw something go by on Twitter from Cliff Stanford - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cliff_Stanford
CliffStanford Cliff Stanford
http://bit.ly/ghXxz0 @akaSylvia @pewari For a browser to make this calculation, it must load all table contents, (cont) http://tl.gd/761l6j
At first I was confused but then followed the first link to find a site posted by fellow Twitterer, ratherdash, http://ratherdash.tumblr.com/post/1520795208/the-story-i-heard-was-that-the-dealer-grabbed-his, where people were being asked to turn to the nearest book when they would find that the third sentence of the second paragraph of the seventy-third page would define their life. Stanford had posted just that sentence with references to two other Twitterers one of whom, akaSylvia, I too was following.
The only book adjacent to my laptop was a biography of Richard Branson, Branson, by Tom Bower which I had recently started rereading. Turning to page 73 was not difficult because I had halted at page 72 and there was hence a bookmark between pages 72 and 73.
The appropriate sentence in it was -
"He eschewed expensive cars, preached that he flew economy class -´the extra comfort is not worth the extra cost´, scoffed the owner of an airline seeking business class passengers - and espoused a carefully refined casual style."
Not forgetting re accurate bookmarks, - http://james-plasketts-coincidence-diary.blogspot.com/2006/03/101-moons-balloon.html
I tweeted the coimcidence of the bookmark -
JamesPlaskett James Plaskett
@CLiffStanford @akaSylvia Guys:the book by me, which I am rereading, WAS with a bookmark at pages 72-73. BRANSON, by Tom Bower. HONESTLY!!
But the thing was that the previous afternoon Stanford had tweeted from an airport this - CliffStanford Cliff Stanford
So much for speedy boarding. SB sent to rear of plane while remainder of px allowed to fill the front. @EasyjetCare I want my money back. from Hertsmere, Hertfordshire 26 Nov
I had sent him one or two e mails over the previous weeks semi-seriously asking him to employ me, not least because he had financed a venture of mine 11 years previously - http://james-plasketts-coincidence-diary.blogspot.com/2006/03/158-past-and-future-glories.html
So I had promptly tweeted -
Plaskett James Plaskett
RT @CliffStanford sent to rear while remainder allowed to front. @EasyjetCare I want my money back. CLIFF: start an airline! + I´ll run it! 26 Nov
I seemed to recall some connection between akaSylvia and flying (I think she had made some remark about living in southern Spain) so I checked her details - http://www.intrigue.co.uk/ http://www.fearoflanding.com/about/
Sylvia Wrigley, it turned out, was not only a pilot but Stanford´s girlfriend and writes about sometimes flying him to the UK.
... ... ...
In late March 2011 I noted that a Facebook friend, Susan Grumer, had put something on her "wall" on March 22nd. It was a variation on this same game. Her specifications were -
: Grab the closest book to you. Go to page 56. Copy the 5th sentence as your status. Don't mention the book. Post these rules as part of your status.
And her example was -
"This idea would also seem to have occupied the very sanctum of materialism, physics."
Others followed suit, e.g. ,
· Curt Carlson Don't know if that works for me. My status would be "Another man or two followed each binder and stacked sheaves of grain vertically into shocks, with the head grains up."
· Jennifer Sivan Ryland- Thomas Marcus looked completely calm, like nothing had happened. lol The actual closest book to me was Thomas the train but it didn't have 56 pages lol
I chipped in with -
· H. James Plaskett "I´m going to tell you something only a father would tell you... After twenty, twenty-two, it´s never quite the same fror a man."
The book was the novel An Innocent Millionaire by Stephen Vizinczey. Then I realised that Susan had quoted from my book, and so added -
James Plaskett Nice to see that my book, COINCIDENCES, was the nearest one you had to hand, Susan.
Later Susan e mailed me to expand - Carl Fuglein is someone I used to work with. just wrote to him to ask where his "rules" came from... He seems to think it's just a silly game – no meaning to the sentence. Somebody sent it to him on Facebook.