Sunday, July 31, 2011

3 Odd Coinkydinks

A week ago I was walking home from work, totally absorbed in work-related thoughts. As I approached the gate to my condo complex, I dug absentmindedly in my bag for my keys.  I grabbed them, stuck one in the lock, and turned.  The knob would not move.

I sighed in exasperation and started wiggling the key.  The property, which covers half a city block, is surrounded by a fence, which has several gates in it at various intervals.  Because the gates are outside, exposed to precipitation and all the extremes of outdoor temperature, the locks regularly jam.  Sometimes wiggling the key will free up the lock. Sometimes I stick my hand through the bars and put the key in from the other side (you need the key to get in and out of the complex, so the locks are double-sided) and sometimes that works.  Sometimes I eventually give up and walk to the next gate.

On this particular day I was tired and annoyed, and I didn't feel like walking to the next gate.  I wiggled and jiggled the key until the lock slid open.  I went through, and as I proceeded homeward I looked down at my keys, intending to locate the key for the entrance to my building, which is on the same key ring.

Except it wasn't.  I realized that I was holding my work keys.  I had been thinking so hard about work that I took my work keys from my bag.  Physically it bears no resemblance to my home keys.  I have five home-related keys on a big ring, each with a brightly-coloured key cover.  I have two work keys, not covered, on a yellow plastic clip-fob.

I had opened the gate with my work key.  That shouldn't be possible.  The key to my complex has extra security - a second set of teeth carved into it where other keys simply have a smooth groove.  I'm not sure how I got that door open.  It was very odd.


On Friday I visited my much beloved massage therapist.  Her office is on the 29th floor of a 30-storey office building.  There are six elevators which serve the top floors.  It is almost inevitable that I have to wait for an elevator, unless someone else has already arrived before me to summon one.

After my massage, I walked into the hallway where the elevators are located.  As I approached, there was a "DING", the red "down" arrow lit above one set of elevator doors, and the doors slid open.  I had not pressed the call button.  There was no one in the car.  There was no one in the corridor.  There were no cleaners' carts in sight.  It seemed strange to me, but convenient, had I been heading straight down.

I was not.  My plan was to vist the nice, clean, corporate-calibre facilities in the office tower before heading home.  There are washrooms in the mall below, but they are usually disgusting.  I passed the waiting elevator and went around the corner.

On my way back to the elevators from the ladies' room, I again noticed no one in the corridors, and no cleaners' carts anywhere.  I approached the bank of elevators.  I did not get a chance to press the call button.  Once again, there was a "DING", the red "down" arrow lit up, and a set of elevator doors slid open just in time for me to walk straight into the empty car.  It was downright creepy.  I half expected the elevator to take me down to some kind of supernatural underworld, but it did not.


The best odd coincidence was experienced by my friend Val, the bingo and karaoke queen.  After her birthday party last weekend, she happened to be out on her balcony at 2:15 am, having a smoke.  From where she was standing she had a clear view of the entrance to the underground parking garage.  She happened to be staring right at it when the door opened and a tow truck drove out - with her car attached to the back.  She had an extreme WTF moment, and promptly called the police.  Turns out that the tow was a repo man, and it was a case of mistaken car identity.  He had taken the wrong vehicle.  He had snuck into the garage by tailing a resident's car as it went in.  The odds of Val being out on her balcony, staring right at the garage entrance, at 2:15 am when the repo man drove away with her car are pretty impressively against.  I don't know whether to call this lucky or unlucky.  Maybe equal portions of both.


DarcKnyt said...

Too bad about that secret supernatural underworld. I need story ideas; you might've been able to tell me about it.

And WOW about your friend and her car! WOW!

ileana said...

Wow, those ARE freaky incidents...especially the elevator experience. I have a fear of elevators....I'll take them but I don't trust them.

Lynn said...

The elevator thing is very twilight zone - and so is the key thing. Hmmm.

G said...

I've had that deja vu with keys at work. We have two separate keys for the supply cabinet and the file cabinet in which we lock the paychecks in.

In theory, neither one is suppose to open the other, but sometimes, they do.

Perfect timing by your friend to be having her cigarette break at the exact same time her car was being hustled away.

As for the elevators, spooky indeed.

Warped Mind of Ron said...

Maybe you're developing super powers!!! Ummmm... don't test the flying power yet, start with something small like super speed on a nice flat surface.

Sparkling Red said...

DarcKnyt: If you'd like to start a story with a sinister elevator and write how it might end up, I'd be very keen to read it.

Ileana: I used to have an active fear of elevators. Now I only get antsy in old, small ones that go "clunk". The elevators in this office tower seem to be in very good repair, so I have never worried about them.

Lynn: I start to get a wee bit wary when several odd things all happen back-to-back. That seems to happen every once in a while. What next?

G: How odd - you also have "interchangeable" keys. Or at least "sometimes" interchangeable, which makes it even weirder.

Ron: I'm going to start with teleportation so don't be surprised when I appear at your front door. ;-)

kenju said... such thing as a coincidence - just synchronicity! I would tell your management about the key mixup so they can investigate and your friend was very lucky to have seen her car get taken.

DarcsFalcon said...

This is a good place where I can use "fortuitous"! Some of those events were really fortuitous. :D

Okay, end of my vocabulary urges, lol. :)

I'd have the key thing checked out. It's good you got in, but it would make me a little nervous to know that random keys work in a lock like that.

I know repo guys are just doing a job, still, that was pretty dumb. Check the VIN# next time! Sheesh! Glad your friend caught it. :)

wigsf3 said...

Here's a coinkydink. The word verification is olocke.

Here's a key-related story for you.
My father locked the keys to his Honda in the car one afternoon. He scavenged the house looking for what might be the extra set of keys, which we later found out were also in the Honda. But he tried every key in the house he could find. One key worked. It was a car key. It had an H on it. That H stood for Hummer, not Honda, but it worked. It required a bit of jiggling and cajoling, but it worked.

Sparkling Red said...

Kenju: Er, I thought those words were synonyms? Anyhoo, you're right; I should probably tell management about the key thing. Probably would be the 1st time they had a complaint about a lock that opened easily; usually all the problems are locks that jam.

DarcsFalcon: Please feel free to break out your obscure words anytime here. I loves me some vocabulary!

wigsf: It's almost enough to make you believe in "The Secret". All you have to do is believe that a key will open a door and it will!
Olocke. That's a good one.