It Really IS A Small World

People often use the phrase "What a small world" when a seemingly impossible coincidence crops up. I've always been a firm believer in this phrase, because, after all, it really is a small world. With people growing up together, then moving away and spreading their roots in a new area, it is inevitable that eventually, people will meet a friend of a friend.

My mum always used to say to me "No matter where you are, no matter what you are doing, there is someone who knows you, watching" It's a phrase that was my undoing on so many occasions as a child it's now part of my Daddy Repertoire. When ever I was up to no good, I always, without fail, got caught. Someone that knew me saw me doing something and would always let someone know, that would let someone know, that invariably got back to my mother.

Yesterday, while sitting around picking my nose, I get a message from one of my heart mum friends, Karlie who lives in Wales. Known her for quite a while from the CHD-UK list, and we occasionally chat and text. Out of nowhere, she messages me and asks "You know a Rich Smith?"

Well, yes, one of my childhood friends was Richard Smith - which, let's face it, a pretty common name - and he moved away several years ago to, of all places, Wales. Turns out that Karlie's other half is friends with, and works with, the very same chap. Now, had it been that he moved an hour up the road, fair enough. But to the other side of the country?

It got me to thinking about how we're all interconnected, especially around here. It seems that people that partake of the Role Playing hobby especially - D&D players, Live Action Role Players, Vampire Players - we all seem to be inbred and inter mingled. Now, bear with me on this, as I'm hoping it translates into a list...

My local childhood friends were Jay and Rich, the only ones of the similar age.
Jay came home with a girlfriend one day, Sarah.
Sarah went on to marry someone called Grant.
Rich got a girlfriend I'd never met.
I got to know Grant through the local games shop.
Grant invited me and Jay to a live roleplay game.
Rich went along with his girlfriend, Jo.
Jo turned out to be Grants brother.
Me and Jay would go some evenings to play Vampire with Amber.
Amber was Sarahs sister.
The guy I thought was Jo's boyfriend was Ben.
Ben is Amber and Sarahs brother.
There were other links as well - a guy from school I lost contact with turned out to be Ambers fella. Another guy from school hung around with Grant. A kid I was in a fight with in my area went to school with Jo's little brother Greg. Bens missus is someone that Jo used to go Live Roleplaying with in Portsmouth. A guy I used to play WoW with on another server is good friends with another of our friends, Gailey.

And on and on.

Facebook has a fairly nifty little application that lets you see the links between and to all your friends on there. Called Friend Wheel, it basically puts all your friends in a circle and connects them with lines. Here's mine:

One hundred and twelve friends, most of which are connected through other friends in some way or another. This Link will take you to the flash-based version (Well, I HOPE it does!), whereby hovering over one person will show you their links. Hovering over Jo is scary ;)

I mentioned it before back in the dim distant past, but I wonder how many friends or friends-of-friends know one another. I'm a firm believer in the Six Degrees of Seperation theory, in that everyone in the world can be connected to any other person by six or less people... This craziness just proves it to be even more likely.

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2 Responses to “It Really IS A Small World”

Phoenix said...

I totally agree. I worked with u and i was in the same class as jo's bro. And I worked wiv Rich Smith too! Its all very scary!

Stuart Wilson said...

Hmmmm.. Wasn't that the same Richard Smith whom was in my IT group at Basildon College in 93/94?

It IS a small world, isn't it!!