These two bizarre seemingly miraculous coincidences happened to me just last week. Tuesday, September 6th (2011), I was driving home from work and I was listening to a song on the radio that I knew was from sometime in the early 70′s, but I couldn’t remember exactly which year, ’72 or ’73.
I tried to think of another song that had possibly been playing regularly on the radio in the same year, and the first song that popped into my head as a possibility was “Layla” by Eric Clapton (otherwise known as “Derek and the Dominoes” for the purpose of the LP known as “Layla” on which the song “Layla” appears), and I tried to hear in my mind the two songs together to “see” if they sounded as though they might have played regularly on the radio in the same year.
Astoundingly, at that very moment, a car passed me in the lane on my left, and the license plate on the rear actually read in its entirety “LAYLA”!!!!!!!! I can only imagine that whoever was driving this car was a huge fan of Eric Clapton (AKA Derek and the Dominoes from that time period) and specifically the song and album titled “LAYLA”!!!
Of course, I was totally wigged out when I saw this license plate go past me at the exact moment when I was wondering if the song I was listening to was playing on the radio in the same year as “Layla”. I managed to get over my goosebumps in about ten minutes, and when I got home I researched the songs and found out that they had INDEED been released to radio in the same year, 1972!! Therefore, I got the CORRECT ANSWER from a license plate at the exact moment I wondered about it! Is that weird, or what??
However, I apparently wasn’t finished with answers from license plates that week, as just three days later (9/9) I was driving to a relative’s bay-house for the weekend, and I found myself on a highway (288) that was deserted enough for me to feel comfortable enough to play some harmonica with the Grand Funk Railroad cd I had the good fortune to grace my player at that time. The kickbutt Grand Funk piece I was listening and playing my harmonica to ended, and a new song started, but in an obviously different key. I knew I would have to change to a different harmonica, and I had four other harmonicas in a leather pouch in the passenger seat, but I didn’t know which harmonica would be the correct key for the Grand Funk Railroad song (Walk Like a Man) that had just started.
I normally have to go through all the harmonicas I have on hand to see if I have the right key by playing a few notes until I get the right one, but I certainly don’t like to have to go through all of that while driving. Feeling just a little bit frustrated about the prospect of rummaging through my remaining harmonicas for the right key, I said out loud: “For cryin’ out loud, can I just get the right harmonica the first time?”
Amazingly, at that very instant a black pickup passed me in the left lane, and its license plate read simply: HOHNER
My blood ran cold. HOHNER is the largest and oldest manufacturer of harmonicas, having been a well-established company since the mid 1800′s. Though I have owned many Hohner harmonicas, I had but one in the leather pouch next to me while driving, the rest of them being Lee Oskar brand harmonicas, made by the company TOMBO in Japan. I had no doubt in my mind as I watched the black pickup disappear into the distance, that the driver was a harmonica enthusiast like myself, and that the one and only HOHNER I had in my pouch would turn out to be the correct key. Holy crap, I was RIGHT!!! The only way this license plate could have been more specific is if it had said: HOHNER, KEY OF A!!!
Naturally, if the license plate had simply said KEY OF A, that would have worked for me just fine, but seeing HOHNER on the plate was even MORE fun that that! Even though I was not able to attract the driver of the truck’s attention (the truck passed me at a speed I don’t like to go, about ten miles an hour faster than I was traveling), it took about half an hour for my goosebumps to subside, and I felt confident that if I HAD been able to get the driver’s attention, he would probably waved a HOHNER harmonica at me after seeing me waving mine at him!
So, naturally the question is, were these two “license plate answers” just spectacular coincidences, or were they indicative of something MUCH more significant?? You probably can guess which way I lean on this, but I admit there’s no way to prove anything about it. Pretty cool though, ain’t it?