My Mission Statement

I write to serve, to unite, to educate. I write to share literature and flesh out ideas that may be of interest to others. I write to document an emotion, experience, or a blip in time. My mission is to write in such a way that the reader is reminded that we can find humor in all situations. It's one of the great blessings of life.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Birthday Statistics

I heard a very interesting statistic on the radio yesterday, and I want to share it with you.

Say you make a new friend in line at carpool pick-up. What, would you think, is the likelihood of the two of you sharing the SAME birthday (not year, just month and day)? Well, my knee jerk reaction is to say the chance is 1 in 365, right? There are 365 days in a year, you're one person, etc. So here's the fun part. I heard yesterday that the actual chance of you having the same birthday as a new acquaintance is 1 in 117. WHAAAAT? Why is that? Well, the explanation given on is two fold: 1. Some days have more birthdays than others. As in, babies are more likely to be born at certain times of year than others and on certain days than others. and 2. (and this is the one that blew my mind) The reason you are more likely to meet someone with your same birthday is also that you are likely to be in a similar place as someone with your same birthday. Is that, like, a "What's your sign?" kind of thing? Like, a stubborn Taurus like me is more likely to meet another Taurus in line at the customer service desk at Food Lion complaining about the spoiled broccoli? Hmmmmm...

When I used to teach 8th grade, there was a popular song called "Things that Make you Go Hmmmm..." and I used to use it as a writing prompt. This little tidbit of trivia would definitely make my "Things that Make You Go Hmmm... Essay.

At pick-up yesterday, I wanted to ask everyone their birthdays, but I was kind of late. I'll have to ask today or in the grocery line or maybe at the post office. This is going to be fun! I used to be in a critique group where all our birthdays were within about 6 weeks of each other. Many of us were only a day or two apart. It was kind of crazy.

So, do me a favor? Ask around. Whose birthdays are near yours? Not family, but friends? Now start asking acquaintances that you see on a regular basis--now when is your birthday? And report back. I'm intrigued with the idea of testing this...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I have a group of women (5 of us) that get together every month to socialize. All of us have birthdays within 6 weeks, starting in June, ending August 6. Your theory is interesting!

Isabel by Donna Jones Koppelman

Isabel by Donna Jones Koppelman

Major Bear at the Grove Park Inn by Donna Jones Koppelman

Major Bear at the Grove Park Inn by Donna Jones Koppelman