It’s a very, very small world

[Or, ‘the things we’d never discover were it not for Facebook’.]

We discover a lot of random stuff via Facebook. (I say ‘we’, obviously those who shun it – Phil, I’m thinking of you – don’t discover anything at all.) We all have those friends who were real friends once upon a time, but nowadays we glean random facts from their status updates. I’m sure I’m not the only person who, when out with friends, finds conversation turning to the activities of once upon a time mutual friends fuelled by information gleaned solely from Facebook – who’s married, had children, been on holiday, moved to London…it’s scary how much we can know about people we don’t even seem to like most of the time!

On Friday morning, while on the way to Wimbledon, K mentioned that an old school friend of ours had been at the Kings of Leon gig in Hyde Park on Wednesday which she’d been at too. (In fact, most of my friends seemed to be at that gig, while I was living it up in Portsmouth…not that I’m bitter, much.) This friend had once been in our wider social circle, particularly in 6th form and early years at university, but none of us had seen her for years and years. Thanks to Facebook, I know that she’s now in London and studying midwifery (and that she had Kings of Leon tickets), but haven’t made any attempt to meet up with her.

Yesterday, a photo of her at Wimbledon popped up in my newsfeed. I took a closer look and realised that it was taken on Friday. A further delve into her album revealed that she’d been sat on the hill watching the Murray-Nadal match – along with us and several thousand others. Closer inspection of one photo indicated that she was sat not terribly far from me and K. Witness, exhibits A and B:

Exhibit A – Emily’s photo
Exhibit B – My photo

Initially, it was the view of the screen that gave it away – it was a pretty good, dead centre one, plus there were the pond plants, which I’d had a great view of from my spot. Then I took a closer look and realised that some of the same people appeared in both. In the first photo is a woman (on the right, partially visible) in a green sleeveless top – in my photo she appears further away, to the right of the screen. I can’t spot Emily in the picture, but she must be there somewhere – very weird.

Talking of weird, photo-related coincidences – I recently came across a story of a couple who, when looking through old photos just before their wedding, discovered their paths had crossed as children on a trip to Disneyland. The woman’s future husband could be seen in the background of a photo of her with one of the seven dwarves. Random.


  1. This is a kinda cool/scary thought. I wonder if they’ll need to redefine the concept of stalking seeing as so many of us now participate in it in a socially acceptable way?

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