Tag Archive: Thomas Brown

(Submitted by reader Thomas Brown)

In the fifth grade, living in Seattle, WA, my best friend and I were on the same little league team and one Saturday had hopped on our bikes and rode down to the park for our game.  Typical of the times and our age, we just let our bikes drop in the grass near the dugout and proceeded to warm up and then played ball.

After the game, to my friend’s dismay, someone had stolen his bike.  I don’t know what possessed me to do it, but I vowed to find it and hopped on my bike and started riding in no particular direction.  I came to one of many apartment buildings some ways away and went in and around the back where, lo and behold someone had locked up my friend’s bike to a railing (it still had all my friend’s decals on it — it was really his bike).  I pedaled like crazy back to my friend’s house and his dad drove us back out, with a pair of bolt cutters, and we simply stole the bike back.

Out of all the homes and apartment buildings in a two or three mile radius of that park, I somehow picked the exact right direction to go and right building to turn into (I was not methodically searching and none of us saw the bike being take and ridden away).  The Odds were truly Crazy that day!

[EDITOR: Vigilante justice combined with sheer dumb luck, or was our submitter IN ON IT THE WHOLE TIME?!?! Nah, probably just sheer dumb luck.]

Right Name, Right Time

(Submitted by reader Thomas Brown)

Way back before our wedding, my wife and I were making a short list of wedding guests and my wife was stumped…  She wanted to invite this friend of a friend that she liked but could not remember her name.

I was going to start brainstorming names for her and started out, “Maria?”  A slight pause and then, “Elena?”  Whereupon my wife’s eyes grew wide as she said, “Maria Elena — that’s it!!”

I had not (yet) met this woman, and my wife had never spoken of her until this occurrence.  Now, granted, I was pretty sure that this woman was Latina which narrowed down my choice of names — but to nail both her names, in order?!?!

[EDITOR: While we can’t delve into the submitter’s mind and pick out names for him, anyone with stats on popularity of Latina names want to take a stab at the stats on this one? It could definitely skew either way, but even with common American names guessing “Robert” and “James” is unlikely to stumble upon someone with that combo. Culturally, could the combination in question be likely enough for this to be expected, or is it as surprising as it sounds at first blush?]