Peter Sellers as Inspector Clouseau

Introducing Chief Inspector Jacques Clouseau

In the autumn of 1989, I was a student. I left a dormitory because I did not fit in the group. Most notably, I could not get along with a particular Lady. I returned to my parental home to gather courage before trying out another dormitory.

There was not much to laugh about in those days, except for a few episodes of Chief Inspector Jacques Clouseau aired on German television. My parents lived near the German border so that I could watch them.

Clouseau was inept, but he always managed to solve the mystery. Guided by a few hunches and vague clues that only made sense to him, he ignored the apparent explanations of the facts and uncovered the truth by accident.

How could a bumbling clown like Clouseau be correct while the competent fail? The answer is that he is a fictional character in a story. The plot is always that Clouseau is right in the end, much to the chagrin of his superior officer.

And what about my claims about this universe and the identity of God? The world we live in could be fiction, and we could be characters in a story, just like an episode of Chief Inspector Clouseau. And so, I could be right after all.

Feature image: Peter Sellers as Inspector Clouseau. [copyright info]

Getting used to strangeness

Eleven is the fool’s number in the Netherlands. 11 November (11-11) is the day the Councils of Eleven are elected. It marks the beginning of the carnival season ending in the celebrations of carnival in February. In the former Roman Catholic areas of the Netherlands, the south, forty days of fasting ended with a feast of excessive eating and drinking, in which people dressed in costumes. In any case, in the Netherlands, eleven is associated with oddity.

Apart from being the fool’s number, eleven is the first double-digit number. Eleven is like a repeating of the same strange event. That is often the nature of coincidences. Something unusual might happen. And that might make you wonder, but if something similar or related happens again shortly afterwards for unexplained reasons, that could be amazing.

There have been several incidents of this kind in my life. For instance, I was once making a bike trip. A car door suddenly opened in front of me. I could barely avoid a collision. Within ten minutes on the same trip, it happened again with another car on another road. These coincidences can occur by chance, but if many of such coincidences happen in one life span, that could make you wonder.

My son Rob had two biking accidents that injured him. The first happened near our home just before the home of a retired physician who could help him with his injuries. The second transpired on our holidays in Ameland just before the home of a retired physician who could help him. That is odd, even more so because these were the two only biking accidents he ever had.

Just before the discovery of Natural Money, a strange accident occurred before our house in Sneek. A car had crashed on a lamppost. The lamppost broke off. Two men stepped out and hared away. A few years later, I realised that the accident may have been a prelude to the deluge of strange events that came later on. That same day I biked towards IJlst, a village near home. There I found a broken-off lamppost already removed. That was remarkable because it was on the same road as our house as it is on the road to IJlst.

The following happened when I was visiting my father in Nijverdal. I was driving on a narrow road in the vicinity. An oncoming car hit the rear-view mirror, and it broke off. A few weeks later, my father had the same type of accident in his car. As far as I know, never before or after had anyone I knew had an accident of this kind.

Ingrid and I have one specific person with whom they can’t get along. They both have the same last name. In the case of Ingrid, the person has been a friend previously. She had unreasonable demands, so at some point, Ingrid decided not to see her again. In my case, it is the lawyer living next door. He first demanded to cut down the trees in my garden. Later he required me to remove overhanging branches. I did so without mutilating the tree. He later ordered his gardener to do a more thorough job, and now the tree is damaged. He further commanded that I would remove the pine needles that fell in his garden. This demand had no legal basis, and his actions may have been illegal, depending on how an expert would assess the damage done to the tree.

In August 2014, we were waiting for a traffic light near home in Sneek. In the back of the car before us sat a guy who looked like my cousin Rob. And so I told Ingrid about that. My cousin and I had been best friends for over a decade. We made the funny newspaper together. Immediately after I finished speaking, four trucks from the transport company Leemans came from the right. My cousin Rob had once decorated a truck of Leemans. When I was eighteen, I went with him on holiday, hitchhiking in Scandinavia. A truck driver from Leemans brought us to Sweden.

I had never seen a Leemans truck in Sneek before. They were there because of railroad construction work. My cousin came from Haaksbergen, a village halfway between Eibergen, where I was born, and Enschede, where A******* was born. In June 2015, we left Nijverdal after visiting my father. Haaksbergen was in the news because of a shooting incident.1 Haaksbergen had been on the news a few times because of electricity failures,2 3, skating,4 and a monster truck accident.5 And so I said to Ingrid that Haaksbergen is in the news quite often. Just after I had finished speaking, we passed a Leeman’s truck by the side of the road.

In 2014 a woman rang our doorbell. Her father was about to turn eighty. He had lived in our house during the 1950s. She wanted to give him a tour around his old home as a birthday present. She made an appointment to visit us the following Saturday. She showed up with her sister and father, and I gave them a tour around the house. A few hours later, the doorbell rang again. Ingrid opened the door to an elderly woman with her daughter and son-in-law. They asked if they could see the house because she had lived there in the 1960s. Both groups had taken up this idea independently and hadn’t spoken to each other.

In July 2014, we went on holiday to Sweden and Norway. My son Rob wanted to visit Hessdalen Valley. People have spotted mysterious lights there. Those lights look like orbs and are known as the Hessdalen orbs. Some people have claimed they were UFOs. When we were in Hessdalen, we went to a viewing point on the top of a hill. A few Norwegian guys stood there already for hours, hoping to photograph a UFO. We didn’t see anything unusual. We took some pictures of the environment. After we had returned home, we noticed orbs on one of the photos we had taken there. Orbs on photographs are a phenomenon unrelated to the Hessdalen orbs, so this is remarkable.

Latest revision: 8 February 2023

Featured image: Orbs on a photograph taken at Hessdalen, Norway (2014).

1. Schietpartij Haaksbergen, politie geeft beelden vrij en toont auto schutter. RTV Oost (7 May 2015) [link]
2. Leger helpt Haaksbergen bij stroomstoring. (26 November 2005). [link]
3. Stroomstoring treft Haaksbergen en omgeving. De Volkskrant (29 March 2007). [link]
4. Natuurijsbaan. Wikipedia. [link]
5. Derde dode door ongeluk monstertruck Haaksbergen [link]

Witbreuksweg dormitory

Meaningful coincidences

Is it possible to prove that this universe is a virtual reality created by an advanced civilisation? The properties of this universe can’t be used for that because we don’t know what a real universe looks like. There may be another way. If coincidences have meaning to us and if they happen numbers that are improbable, this may be because an intelligent force is directing events. Perhaps there is even a script. If there is a script then this universe may be created by an advanced civilisation. A script can generate meaningful and peculiar coincidences. And indeed, peculiar coincidences happen, for instance similar extremely rare events happening on the same day.

On 15 July 2011 two television towers in the Netherlands caught fire. One collapsed in a spectacular way. There never had been a fire in a television tower in the Netherlands before while those television towers had been there for more than fifty years. And there are only a few television towers, making such an incident even more improbable. There was some speculation about these incidents having a common cause. This is unlikely as these towers are two individual masts in different areas.1

The following happened to me. In 1992 I was making a bike trip in Groningen where I lived back then. While I was on my way a car door suddenly opened just in front of me. I could barely avoid a collision. Some ten minutes later, while I was still on the same trip, it happened again with another car on another road. Remarkably, it never happened before or after this trip that a car door just opened in front of me, even though I made bike trips nearly every day.

Incidents like these might be mere random events. Bizarre accidents happen all the time by chance because so many things happen at the same time. Some of them are bizarre but it doesn’t require an intelligent force to make that happen. There is no way of calculating the odds of an event like two television towers catching fire in one country in one day because these events are extremely rare. The probability of each of these events happening is extremely low, but the number of possible rare accidents is extremely high.

But how low and how high? That matters a lot. If there are a million of these events, and the odds of one of them happening on a certain day is one in a million, we shouldn’t be surprised to see such events happening. On average an event like that should happen every day. But if the odds are one in a trillion, and these events happen quite often, we may be on to something, because on average it should happen once in a million days.

We attribute meaning in many different ways and we are not inclined to think of randomness in the case of unusual events. The number of possible meaningful coincidences is close to infinite so it should not surprise us that meaningful coincidences happen. On the other hand, bizarre and meaningful coincidences are more likely to happen to someone but are less likely to happen to me. Several meaningful coincidences happening in one person’s life has more significance than a simple incident like two car doors opening in front of me on the same day.

There were plenty unusual incidents in my life. For instance, once I entered a do-it-yourself store. There was a couch near the entrance. The price tag was € 389. This caught my attention because as a student I lived in dormitory 389-second-floor on the campus of the University of Twente. Price tags often end with a nine so the incident wasn’t impressive. Then I realised that it would be far more curious to find a price tag of € 401 as I also had lived on dormitory 401-right-side and price tags rarely end with a 1.

A few seconds later I ran into a pile of bags of potting soil. These bags had 40l conspicuously printed on them, noting that they contained forty litres of potting soil. That was close enough to 401 to be intriguing. There weren’t any other bags to be seen. Potting soil comes in bags of 10, 20, 25, 40 and 50 litres, and bags of 40 litres come with markings like 40L and 40 litres, so the marking 40l is peculiar.

And more was to come. Two years later I came back to the same store. Bags of potting soil with the 40l marking were situated outside near the entrance. This reminded me of the previous incident. There was no couch near the entrance nor did I see a price tag of € 389 there. These things I was contemplating while I proceeded to fetch the item I was planning to buy. The price of this item turned out to be € 3.89.

This scheme is more intricate than two television towers catching fire or two car doors opening in front of you on the same day, most notably because there was a repeating pattern while these incidents also appear to be part of a larger scheme, in this case of a sequence of peculiar coincidences referring to a certain lady who lived on dormitory 401-right-side. The first coincidence was already remarkable. The second one was truly inconceivable if you come to think of it, or perhaps not if you are a sceptic.

Featured image: Number 381 dormitory. University Of Twente (2013). [copyright info]

1. Onderzoek: Hoe konden twee zendmasten vandaag in brand vliegen? Algemeen Dagblad (15-07-2011). [link]