The late, great Lawrence Auster would often remark on the synchronicity that he frequently experienced. I thought of him last month when I encountered the word Brobdingnagian. I had recently downloaded a hangman game application on my Blackberry and was playing it in the morning before I started the day. During the game, the hangman word was Brobdingnagian. My little digital man went swinging. I looked up the word. I have never read Gulliver’s Travels, and I do not remember ever seeing the word before.
About twelve hours later, I came upon the word in Middlemarch. What are the chances?
Now, I recognize that we seem to make note of a new word once we learn it. It seems to pop up everywhere, and it is possible that we just never noticed it before when we were ignorant of it. Yet, Brobdingnagian is such a queer word that I am sure that I would have remembered it. I live for years without encountering the word and then learn about it, and then it shows up in the novel that I am reading just hours later. Weird.