The Great Midwest Trip: Actors and Magic
This is part two of The Great Midwest Trip, a series of advice and notes from my week-long journey.
Remember people by associating them with actors.
Talking to as many people as we had, N was fairly stunned I could remember so many names. Yes, I cheated and had been jotting them all down in my sketchbook, too. But I also realized I was following advice I either got from Stephen Silver or Walt Stanchfield (one of those geniuses.) Artists who draw caricatures sometimes associate people’s features with something or someone memorable. I’ve ran into people who reminded me of a stunning young Adama in a suit (Jamie Bamber from Battlestar Galactica), a portlier Pete Campbell (Vincent Kartheiser from Mad Men) and an auburn-haired Quinn Fabray. (Dianna Agron from Glee — her boyfriend totally agreed with me.)
For all my strategies though, it still didn’t save me from the embarrassment of introducing myself to the same girl twice in one day. (To be fair, she did change her top.) At least I recognized her the third time we ran into each other later that night. (without her glasses, too!)
People call it by different names – fate, destiny, coincidence. It doesn’t happen very often but once in a while, I get a glimpse of it and it never ceases to amaze. How else can I explain what happened to me in Ann Arbor, Michigan?
I was on my own for a few hours, N was attending events that day on his own. I wondered into the university’s art museum because having a fairly useless degree in Art History (so far) means you can at least appreciate artwork on a deeper level. I was seriously just killing time, browsing through the entire collection by myself when I walk into the Modern Art section and hear a graduate student instructor talking about a piece to her undergrad class.
It was somewhat crowded and I wanted to see other pieces in the gallery so I turned around the corner and hear another GSI speaking to his group and oh, that voice sounds pretty familiar…hmmm, he kinda reminds me of my Art History classmate in Berkeley….he even looks like him – down to the skinny, little frame… he eventually catches me staring and recognizes me. HOLY SNAP, IT’S ACTUALLY HIM.
I’m terrible at math and college-level statistics nearly killed me but what are the odds …
…I’d meet one of the few college friends I’ve made at Berkeley in California
…who is currently a PHD student at Ann Arbor, Michigan
…giving a talk on the same day N and I were in town
…at the same exact time I decided to visit the museum?
Somehow I remember seeing he was in Michigan for grad school on Facebook but I didn’t actually remember to look him up for this trip. I was just reading Wicked at the undergraduate library all morning so you know, there never would have been an opportunity to actually bump into him if I didn’t decide to check out the museum at 3 o’clock. Mind-blowing, isn’t it? A rationalist like N would say it’s all just a big coincidence but I say, there’s beauty and a kind of order in serendipity like this and I choose to appreciate it!
Next post will have cats and a Game of Thrones-related challenge we accomplished!