My Epitaph

If you don't question everything, you will know nothing and believe anything!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Am I really the 1

More than once in my lifetime since first taking (and literally teaching the class to a small group of coeds as part of my learning the material) statistics (E270 through the Economics Department as a prerequisite to being admitted into the Business School) have I tried to crudely contemplate the various aspects whose probabilities would have to be including in calculating the odds-against-chance of something happening to me.

The first time I literally stopped in amazement was at 21 years old and walking the streets of Amsterdam.  I admit I was early into the 10-12 years I smoked cigarettes, and, at least at that time, the sidewalks and pedestrian streets of Amsterdam were terribly littered with cigarette butts, so what difference would mine make?  As I am walking with the two traveling companions who attending the overseas program with me, I flick a butt out of fingers and watch as the butt hits the sidewalk and then bounces off the sidewalk to land standing straight up on the filter!

I immediately call it to my traveling companions' attention and proceed to ask for help in thinking of the the different things that would need to be included in calculating the odds-against-chance of having a flicked butt bounce and land standing straight up on the filter since we all had passed E270.  I don't want to type all night recalling as many times as I can off the top my head that I've literally stopped to try and at least roughly guesstimate the odds-against-chance that of all the people that could possibly be the 1 out xyz chance, that it would be me.  10 years ago when I was driving a motor home across the USA burning a pathetic excuse of a settlement for having endured 5 spinal fractures and being sentenced to a life sentence of pain (a double life sentence if I include the pain meds), the biggest question was whether I needed to add that day's odds-against-chance to the previous day's (they may not have been sequential days because I was bedridden for a day or two between each day I estimated odds-against-chance), or whether they needed to be multiplied together to give a closer guess to the odds I should have experienced what caused me to pause and think.

Eventually, having been stopped by life to contemplate the odds of the event/experience occurring, let alone to me, I began to just accept that I am a statistical anomaly, or maybe even more precisely The Statistical Anomaly and if there's a way to beat the odds in something, I am the Will(iam) for that way!  One of the many bands names I hope someday to be billed under (what better way to keep it underground than a different name every tour?) is Statistical Anomaly and the Odds Against Chance.

So what triggered this post today?

As I was leaving this link in a YouTube comment concerning William Cooper's Mystery Babylon series and Manly P Hall, I was verifying that this first edition was identical to the one I read at Hall's Philosophical Research Society's Library circa 2012 by checking the final 20 or so words Hall wrote in the book.  I scrolled too far from the pages I was seeking (86 of 89) and landed on 109/114 which should have been blank pages at the end of the booklet.  If you scroll to 109/114 you will see a date stamp from the library.  The date of the stamp was May 4, 1938.  May the Fourth will be with me always, at least on any form of ID requiring a birthdate, but I did not turn 80 this year.

When I calculated how many years before my birth was this first edition of Hall's inaugural publication from 1922 stamped, I chuckled when it came up as 33 and thought Manly Hall would love it!

I really don't know how to calculate those odds-against-chance because I might have to go back to that upright butt's odds and combine every instance in my life I have guessed as the various factors required to accurately calculate the odds-against-chance, and that's even before I go all Casablanca on it with "of all the copies, of all the books, to have been scanned into the Internet Archive, why did you have to have that date stamped in you?"

I may not really be the 1 like Neo in the Matrix, but I seem to be comfortable being the 1 out of ridiculous odds because I've inhabited that realm countless times in my life where I've literally paused to begin calculating the odds-against-chance of that event occurring, as well as the odds of it occurring to me.
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