Sunday, February 26, 2017

More Ask and Ye Shall Receive (Faster and Faster)

Recently, I had a distinct thought: I need a new book.

Approximately a minute later, I found a book, abandoned on a random park bench.

Sound incredible, perhaps impossible (or, perhaps fictional?) Wait'll you read the circumstances in which this occurred ...

* * *

First, the context on my latest ask-and-receive adventures (in case you don't see the post immediately below this one).

As for the circumstances of the event itself, this "receipt" occurred on a pleasant winter afternoon in a city park -- a city which, as it were, I did way too much walking in, for I ended up irritating an irritable knee, leaving me unable to walk even the short distance back home. Thus, I was forced to seek out a bench, on which I collapsed and then began calling up a ride on my phone.

Halfway through, however, I stopped: I needed a new book. About to finish my current read, I needed a new one lined up. And, I needed it before I retired for the evening (gotta have my reading material, as breath).

Need a new book, I thought then. I'd planned on stopping for one on the way home, but were I to hail a ride, a stop-off wouldn't be possible (unless I wanted to pay for two rides, and just complicate the whole thing in general).

With that, I decided to try walking again, if only to a bus stop. After all, my knee had spontaneously healed up in the past, after a short rest. And so I got up, walked several feet ... and promptly winced in pain as my knee screamed out, refusing to go further.

Ultimately, I made it only as far as the next sequential bench.

And it was there that I "received": when I began to sit down, something was in my way, occupying my intended bench-space. Of course, it was a book -- and not only a book, but one that actually appealed to me, of an appropriate length and type, and of a subject matter that engaged me at this particular time (I'm really picky about my books, with my tastes changing from day to day ...). And, it bears mentioning: this book, though resting just one bench down as I'd done my silent "asking," was completely invisible to me then, being tucked out of sight behind the second bench's arm rest -- such that I couldn't possibly have seen it and been "tipped off" to its presence, even subconsciously in my peripheral vision.

In this blog's previous post, I'd said my ask-and-receives were getting faster. Well, apparently this quickening process isn't yet finished.

* * *

But wait, there's more (as there almost always is with my synchronistic experiences).

The next day, it happened again, almost exactly the same: while walking down a random street, needing to stop randomly to sip some water and adjust my bags, I sat on a random bench -- only to find another book preceding me there. Just like the first one, less than 24 hours earlier. Déjà vu, big time.

Though, it wasn't exactly the same, for this time my discovery was not asked for; instead, I just ... found another book. All the same, it still makes me wonder: was this also a synchronistic incident, just of another kind? That is, perhaps rather than being a second "ask and receive"-type of incident, this one was, simply, a recurrence of yesterday's discovery of a book left randomly on a bench -- as a typical, "normal" synchronistic recurrence, one that just happened to "echo" a respectively different synchronicity.

Then again, maybe this repeat was just chance, however unlikely (is this a common practice, leaving books on benches for others to find? I mean, I've done it myself, setting out books in conspicuous places after I've finished them, in bread-on-the-waters fashion; but I had no idea others did this). But, to again go the other way, I'll say this: in all my life (and in the many flat surfaces I've graced with my rear end), I've never once found a book on a bench ... and then it happened twice, less than a day apart.

* * *

Oh, and just so there's no confusion: yes, this really happened. Proof? I have none, beyond my word (of an anonymous internet blogger, no less); but, then again, I pass along my experiences for informational purposes only. This post, like everything I write here, comes with the standard disclaimer: take it or leave it, believe it or don't, for what it's worth (whatever it's worth).

Monday, February 6, 2017

Ask and Ye Shall (More Quickly) Receive

Ah, the "ask and ye shall receive" synchronicity. One of my favorite varieties -- because, after all, who doesn't like receiving what they've asked-for?

These days, however, I've experienced a trend in these sort of incidents: they're speeding up. That is, I'm receiving faster.

* * *

 Let's begin with an example of a traditional, delayed, "normal" a-and-r-type synchro (as if anything of the sort can ever feel normal ...).

It happened this past December, right around Christmas time, beginning with a random, years-old copy of Rolling Stone. In one of the magazine's articles, it mentioned solitary confinement and the psychological effects it often has on prisoners. Hmm, wouldn't mind learning more on that subject, I thought.

Jump forward a couple days, when I was reading a second random copy of Rolling Stone, also several years old (but a year or two newer than the first). In this one, I came across a second article: about solitary confinement and the psychological effects it often has on prisoners. Except, this one was devoted fully to the subject, going at it in-depth -- and, thus, fully satisfying the explicit request I'd made just days previous.

In a touch of irony, the second article even mentioned how, in a previous issue of Rolling Stone, the topic of solitary confinement had been touched on in an unrelated piece. (And, of course, my selecting these two particular issues, and my receiving them in the first place, was entirely random, with each pulled blindly out of a thick stack in an enclosed drawer -- that is, with no way that I could've been influenced in my selections, even subconsciously.)

* * *

Interesting? Yes. But, apparently, waiting a few days for my "receipt" is too long, as a couple recent incidents demonstrate.

Take the one that occurred on February 3rd of this year, for instance.

As I drove up to a store, I was rocking out to "Girls, Girls, Girls," the classic Crue song, after it had cropped up unexpectedly on the radio. However, as much as I was enjoying myself, I was short on time and so had to leave the car before the song could finish, therefore depriving myself of its last leg (including the guitar solo and its top-octave peak).

Man, wish I could hear the rest of that, I thought as I killed the engine and stepped from the car.

I was only gone fifteen minutes, but, of course, the song was finished long before. However, as I keyed my car, I was startled to hear the unmistakable scratch of Mick Mars's guitar -- playing the solo of "Girls, Girls, Girls." As it were, the music was the backing track of an advertisement (for a strip club, hence the choice of song).

And, thus, I Received the last leg of "Girls, Girls, Girls," almost exactly where it had left off from before.

* * *

But, the Receiving would speed up even more.

Case in point: another incident involving a classic-rock song on the radio, occurring just the day after that of the "Girls, Girls, Girls."

I was cruising down the road, again grooving on some particularly agreeable guitar-rock that had come on at just the right time. This song, however, I didn't recognize, other than the fact that it sounded suspiciously like Journey.

Wonder who that is, I thought in between fits of air guitar. Sounds sorta like Journey.

Approximately two seconds later, I stopped at a red light, with a car in front of me -- a car with a big, prominent emblem reading "JOURNEY," arriving before the word had time to leave my mind. It created something of an echo effect, which I can only describe as utterly surreal.


(And, yes, it was indeed a Journey song, "Stone in Love," as confirmed later when I looked up the lyrics.)

If only Amazon could fulfill requests so quickly.

Friday, November 18, 2016

More Book Synchronicity

The book was echoing my present reality, it seemed.

It wasn't the first time I'd experienced this phenomenon, certainly. However, this latest instance of book synchronicity was probably the most surreal, with it seeming to directly reflect my life's events and circumstances at the time, even as they unfolded from day to day. Talk about a head-trip.

For starters, consider the context of my actually buying the book.

My copy of States of Confusion by Paul Jury, around which this incident centers, was bought from a library sale, as a discard, and it was synchronistically notable from the get-go. Just before the library-visit in question, while in the parking lot after making an important phone call, I'd decided on a long roadtrip West, with the goal of a cross-country journey beginning in coastal South Carolina and ending in California or thereabouts -- and, surprise surprise, the States of Confusion book, which I would buy just minutes later, was about just that: a big, meandering, cross-country roadtrip.

Just a coincidence? Not inconceivable ... until we consider the completely random circumstances of my buying the book (which, as it were, are doubly notable when it's considered that they fit the pattern of so many other synchronistic incidents I've experienced in the past). Namely, I'd first been illogically Compelled to browse the discards on sale, despite not needing any new books to read (I had a whole stack at the time). Next, I'd been strongly attracted to the States book, though I could only see the spine of it on the library rack, reading "States of Confusion" with "jury" underneath it -- that is, absolutely nothing about roadtrips or travel, or anything at all relating to the trip I'd just minutes previously decided upon, as to rule out any sort of subconscious influence. (And, that's not even considering the fact that I was at the library at all, with my having zero plans to go there that day, nor any overt reason to do so ...)

Regardless, the book's synchronistic purchase was just the beginning. As it so happened, I finished my last read and then began the States of Confusion book on the day of my departure, less than 24 hours after my fateful visit to the library. From there, more and more eerily surreal parallels began to crop up:

1) The first couple pages of the book mentioned the author's being a college student, and what transpired after his graduation; however, before I could read any farther, I was interrupted by someone saying "hello" to me. The person was a totally random stranger, approaching me at the bench outside the coffee shop where I was reading/eating at the time, and, somehow, we ended up in conversation about ... college and college graduation, along with several other subjects, almost all of which were exactly what I'd just read in the book, seconds earlier. What's more, these subjects all came up from the stranger's end, and with zero prompting on my part -- that is, I said absolutely nothing that would've subconsciously suggested that this person broach these subjects. In fact, the subjects were entirely offhand, awkwardly so, without any bearing whatsoever on anything we were discussing; the stranger literally just kind of tangented onto her time in college and how she'd graduated with a certain GPA, completely out of the blue.

2) Soon after, a couple states into my roadtrip, I was struck by a random, vague (yet very distinct) thought: of how an inordinate number of businesses are incorporated in Delaware, thanks to certain laws there. This thought was, as best as I can remember, apropos to nothing I was experiencing or thinking about at the time; I wasn't in Delaware, or reading of Delaware, or considering visit Delaware -- nada. And then, just hours later, while reading more of the States book, I came across a passage that mentioned precisely what I'd thought of that morning: Delaware's incorporation-friendly laws, and the glut of corporations headquartered there. As it were, it was the first the book had mentioned this, or anything Delaware-related (and, the last it mentioned it ...).

3) Towards the middle of the book, the author makes mention of how he was by then driving around the country foul-smelling and unshaven -- which, by the time I'd reached that part of the book, described my condition exactly. As it so happened, I'd been unable to steal the time to shave before departing, despite being visibly overdue; and, likewise, I'd developed a spontaneous and mysterious body odor just before leaving, such that, despite taking regular showers (unlike the book's author), I stayed smelly (and had an uncharacteristic five-o'-clock shadow). Just like I was reading about ...

4) On the very day I was passing through Atlanta, GA, I Just Happened to reach the part of the book where the author passes through ... Atlanta, GA. And, it bears saying: the book had, like the Delaware reference, made absolutely zero mention of Atlanta before or after this part, nor did I have any plans on even being in Atlanta on this day or ever in the trip -- such that I couldn't have possibly orchestrated the coincidence, even had I read the book beforehand, with the correlation hinging on so many objective elements and chance variables ...

5) My roadtrip was conducted in a van, in which I slept in at night, "van-camping"-style -- which, halfway through the book, is precisely what the author ends up doing: trading in his sedan for a van, in which he sleeps, van-camping-style ...

6) Several days into my trip, I decided, totally randomly and illogically yet strongly and distinctly (the same way I'd felt about buying the book upon first seeing its spine on the rack ...), to head south, to Florida, hence abandoning my Westerly ambitions. And, likewise, the day after taking this caprice, I'd been struck with a similar notion: to seek out a hot mineral spring in Florida, the kind that are soaked in for their purported therapeutic effects. Then, just a couple hours later while resuming my reading of the States book for the day, I came to a part where -- yeah, you guessed it -- the author mentions medicinal hot springs, specifically. Again: for the first time in the book, with no prior foreshadowing, or anything that could've possibly incited my spontaneous Compelling to seek out some hot springs ...

There were more synchronistic parallels -- lots more, actually, to the point that I felt to be in nothing less than a living dream. But, once again, I'll stop there, for the point is made.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

No I'm Not Making These Up (I Promise)

Just when I thought myself schooled in synchronicities, knowing all their variants and species and subspecies ... nope.

The newest to establish itself: the "involuntary bodily function" synchro.

What're these? Just what the name implies: my body performing some involuntary function at the exact instant that that function's essence is expressed elsewhere, externally from me (in, say, a book or a sign or some independent event). Example: my bowels churning  precisely as I randomly read "churn" in a book (this exact one has happened to me, multiple times, as it were). Besides the synchroshock value of the whole thing, these incidents are exceptionally noteworthy due to their involuntary nature -- which is to say, their objective nature, as to almost totally rule out chance coincidence as a reasonable explanation. After all, even if the "churn" I randomly read were visible to me, in my peripheral vision prior to directly reading the word, it could not have conceivably influenced the synchronistic corollary event, except perhaps on a deeply subconscious level (though, more often than not, this happens when the word isn't visible beforehand at all).

Try consciously making your bowels churn. It's like trying to wriggle your ears, but exponentially more difficult (and more awkward). Personally, I cannot make my bowels churn on command, however loudly I yell at them.

No I'm not kidding. I've actually had this happen to me, and not just a few times, either.

* * *

Take the afternoon of 10/20/16, for instance.

I had just sat down to lunch and a book, minding my own business -- when, a couple bites in, a weird (yet wonderful) energy shot up my spine and into the left side of my head, leaving me feeling like a Christmas tree with its star turned on. Then, coinciding perfectly with this phenomenon, I read "left side of the brain" in the book I had open. The phrase registered with precise, keen timing, as to correspond seamlessly with my thought of, "Energy in the left side of my brain."

And, it bears mentioning: I'd had no such weird/wonderful energy-jolts prior to that one, nor did I have any after. Likewise, the book's mention of the left side of the brain was as random and singular, not occurring before or after my physical phenomenon -- which is to say, I hadn't been having these all day, nor had the book devoted an entire chapter to the brain's left side. Instead, both of these single, fluke incidents Just Happened to coincide, and at that exact instant ...

* * *

Or, how about another, from a couple weeks earlier, on 10/6/16.

Same deal as before, except this time it involved my spleen rather than my head. Precisely as I randomly read "twitched" in a book -- my spleen twitched, in a distinctive (and irksome) way that I experience from time to time (but, on that day, I'd not had happen for hours).

* * *

Or, how about this one, also of recent note (10/14).

Just like the last one, basically, except that this time I was writing rather than reading, in a personal health-journal I keep. Precisely as I wrote about my spleen evacuating the night before (yeah, spleens do, when upset, evacuate gas and the like, if you've never had the pleasure of spleen dysfunction) -- BAM! -- it happened again, my typing out "spleen evacuated" 100% synchronistically with my spleen gurgling empty, as to coincide perfectly.

Ah! you might say. But this time, you were writing about the involuntary function, and thus thinking about it, and so the thought could've just acted as a subconscious trigger. Yes, good point -- and, perhaps, that was indeed the case. For this one, at least. (Then again, considering I've experienced several others which would fail to be explained in this manner, but were, pattern-wise, nearly identical ... perhaps this one wasn't just some subconscious tomfoolery.)

* * *

Here's a nice little pair, which occurred back-to-back, on the evening of 9/13/16.

Straight quote from my log:
Had a couple of late and highly notable reading synchros this evening, both of that "involuntary bodily function corresponding to something read" type. The first was when I was in the sauna and got a sudden surge of that bad upset deep in my left guts, a couple seconds before I read "a vicious congestion of the chest" -- a perfect description of this phenomenon in the guts of mine, couldn't have put it better myself. [...] And then, a little less notable but almost identical in nature: "not so tense" almost precisely as my shoulders visibly/palpably relaxed, causing me to slump, again not quite perfectly synchronistic but certainly close enough to be of note.
 * * *

Once more, I could post additional examples ... but I won't. If you're unconvinced (or curious), go to the log and search for "involuntary" in the 2015 and -16 sections. (Not that my log constitutes objective proof of the phenomenon, of course; if nothing else, it's good for a laugh.)

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

A Buckshot of "Ask and Ye Shall Receive"

In a random book, I read of someone listening to a NASCAR race on the radio. Afterward, I had the thought: You know, I've never once heard a race on the radio ...

After thirty-some years of life on Earth, you'd think I'd have heard at least a race or two. But no, not once.

The next day, I was in my car, traveling through a small town in another state, when I lost my radio station. Upon scanning for a new one, I came to a station with an announcer rather than music -- for a NASCAR race.

* * *

A few days ago, I noticed my toilet bowl needed cleaning. My first thought was to go for the chlorine-based spray I've always used, but I was stopped by a thought: This stuff is toxic, and pollutes the environment when flushed. There must be a good, nontoxic way to flush the toilet ...

Thirty minutes later, when reading a random magazine, I came across a how-to article for cleaning house -- which mentioned that baking soda and vinegar were great as a "nontoxic way to clean the toilet."

As it were, I had both. Worked great, and no nastiness.

(Oh yeah, and the magazine? An issue of 'Parents,' the first I'd never seen, which I'd been Compelled to get from the library's "free" bin, despite being neither a parent nor a parent-to-be nor having the slightest interest in anything parent-y. And, of course, there was nothing about toilet-cleaning anywhere on the magazine's cover ...)

* * *

When on the way to a doctor's appointment, I randomly thought of the waiting room there, and how I would sometimes read its complimentary copies of Rolling Stone. This triggered a second thought: Been a while since I've read a Rolling Stone. Wouldn't mind reading one again sometime.

At the doctor's, I was seen to right away, so I was deprived of waiting in the waiting room and, thus, of leafing through a Rolling Stone. But no matter, because, during my visit, the doctor informed me that she'd recently cleaned out all the magazines in the place, and had felt "led" to save all the copies of Rolling Stone -- for me.

I left with a veritable stack of the things, as to require a double-bagged bag.

* * *

I could list more -- many more. But I won't. You get the idea.

Friday, September 9, 2016

The Book-Synchro Returns

For those unfamiliar, allow me to recap.

The "book synchronicity," as I've dubbed it, is, categorically, as follows: I'll read of something in a given book -- usually a rare, new fact previously unknown to me -- and then, very soon after, I'll read of that same thing a second time, in my next sequential book. Usually, said books will have been purchased totally randomly, and read in a similar fashion; likewise, the books will be completely different (subject matter, author, type, etc). Another common component of these incidents: I'll have been Compelled, in a special, illogical way, to buy the books in question, and similarly motivated to read them when I do. Thus, a typical, patternistic reading-synchro would involve me being Compelled, for no particular reason, to buy several books, at different time periods, and then read them randomly, perhaps after they'd been sitting in my stack for weeks or months or longer, just waiting for me to get that illogical green-light to at last crack them open -- only to find that the two books will contain notably similar facts, mentions, or themes, and with a precision and nature that would render such recurrences highly unlikely (sometimes shockingly so, as to be of astronomically low probability).

To see what I mean, browse some past examples, why don't you.

* * *

Now, I've experienced some good, convincing book synchronicities, and plenty of them, such that I've stopped blogging these incidents unless they are truly exceptional.

Case in point.

This one breaks somewhat from the typical book-synchro pattern, in that the incident's first ingredient was a newspaper rather than a book. And, also somewhat unique, the paper came to me, and for free. As it were, the paper was in a supermarket I frequent, though not for sale; rather, it was lying atop a cooler, just beyond the checkout. When I passed, the paper Jumped Out at me, demanding my attention, in that special way typical of Compellings. So I stopped and picked it up, finding myself holding a week-old copy of The Wall Street Journal (from August 23rd, 2016). It would seem that some considerate soul had left it on the cooler after reading it through, to be recycled as is customary. Though not much of a Wall Street Journal-type, I proved to be the paper's savior from that lonely cooler (after I checked with a cashier that, indeed, the paper was fair game rather than just a misplaced for-sale copy). I had little interest in WSJ subject matter, of course, but interests don't factor into Compellings.

That night, we come to this incident's first synchronicity: While reading through this paper, I came across an article that mentioned the recent acquisition of a company called Syngenta, which I had never before heard of in my life. And then, approximately a half-hour later, when reading through my current book at the time (Fast Food Nation, as it were), I came to a section on GM foods, in which it mentioned the company Syngenta.

A classic book-synchro: my learning of something for the first time in my life, in some randomly bought- and read piece of reading material, and then, a short time after, encountering that same thing elsewhere, despite the sources being entirely different in subject matter (and time of purchase, and about everything else). It's only more notable that, in this case, the original source was a cast-off, week-old newspaper, involving news and information for which I had no logical need, and picked up totally on instinct in an equally random place.

But that was just the start. (Remember: the blog-worthy ones gotta be truly exceptional, these days.)

Next up, Exhibit B: the vitamin book, Planet Heal Thyself.

Here, we must rewind several weeks (remember, also, that my book-synchro books are often acquired weeks or months apart). This part, too, comes with a twist: instead of randomly buying this book, I got it for free, unexpectedly, when buying a vitamin supplement. When considering the supplement, I hadn't seen a sign for a free book; I learned of this bonus only upon checking out (the supplement was on sale, too, and I even had a coupon -- my lucky day!). The complimentary book, called Planet Heal Thyself, was about vitamins and minerals and the like, but I wasn't much drawn to it at the time, so it went in my stack, where it would sit for the next few weeks, while I entertained more-attractive books. Only after finishing Fast Food Nation (the book that first echoed Syngenta, thus instigating the whole mess) was I Compelled to read the vitamin book.

This too followed the pattern, with the book just seeming to glow amongst its brethren in the stack, saying Pick me! Pick me! in that special way I've come to recognize.

That brings us to the second synchronicity. Within the first few pages of the vitamin book, it mentioned a website, "23andMe," where one can have their DNA analyzed for various things. I'd never heard of this site before, and despite previously having no real interest in exploring my DNA, I was Compelled to write it down and visit it. However, as it turned out, I didn't get around to actually looking up 23andMe until a few days later, in a fit of determination to clear my desk of notes and other I'll-do-it-laters. Similarly, on the same evening, about thirty minutes later, I got around to finishing that curious copy of the WSJ I'd started reading the other night (I do this, picking through a section or two of a newspaper at a time). In the paper's final section, I came to an article about genetic testing, which mentioned a website where the public can be tested for various genetic conditions: 23andMe.com.

This recurrence, too, fits the book-synchro pattern, doubly so: first, I'd originally learned of the site just days before; and, second, I re-encountered it in the paper less than an hour after actually visiting the site. (And, keep in mind: the paper's mention of 23andMe was in the last, innermost section, totally concealed and out of view when I'd initially snatched up the paper and even after I'd read the first few sections -- so it's impossible that I could've been subconsciously influenced by it, in even the most subtle and imperceptible of ways).

Exceptional yet? Apparently not, because two days later, it happened all over again.

Same deal: another randomly bought book (a heady historical title called DNA USA, this time), read as randomly, just after finishing Planet Heal Thyself -- and, sure enough, this one, too, mentioned the 23andMe website. So, after somehow remaining ignorant to 23andMe for the several years of its existence, I suddenly bumped into it three times within a matter of days, from three sources that couldn't have been more random and misdirected (and, as it were, adhering to the pattern established by dozens of past incidents, which cranks up the notability factor exponentially).

For this third one, though, I can foresee an obvious rebuttal: Weren't you already thinking of genetics and the like when you began reading a book with "DNA" in the title? Ah, a good point, Watson, because this scenario would indeed suggest some subconscious influence in my choice of reading material. Except, here's the thing: I'd bought the DNA USA book before reading Planet Heal Thyself and the unexpected copy of The Wall Street Journal -- that is, before I'd ever first read of Syngenta and 23andMe in the others (and even before I'd come to the relevant part of that first, initial book, Fast Food Nation). As it so happened, just a couple days prior to my receiving the paper on charity, I'd picked up the DNA USA book from a thrift store, despite having a good, full stack of unread books back at home -- being Compelled to buy it, illogically yet distinctly, as is prominent with these things.

So, yeah ... exceptional.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

You Just Can't Force These Things

It was one of "those" days.

The synchronistic phenomenon was in full swing: the incidents coming left and right, the world alive with them, as to leave my head spinning in a surreal, living-dream daze. On the day in question, I'd experienced several "reading"-type synchronicities in particular, where my random thoughts and experiences would coincide with equally random phrases read in books or on signs and the like. To my resident skeptic, however, such high levels of "activity" only inspire negative, glass-half-full comments. For example: while I was sitting outside a coffee shop and read "A bell jingled," and no bell jingled in answer.

With that, my mind's resident skeptic spoke up: If you're really experiencing these surreal synchronicities as you think, then why no bell?

Good question, I thought in reply. Absently, I then set the book down to take a sip of coffee. Afterward, upon resuming the book, I picked back up where I'd left off, at "A bell jingled."

Immediately upon reading it this time, I heard a bell sound from behind me -- and not just any bell, but a jingling bell, a Christmas leftover, with holly and mistletoe and all, hung on the coffee-shop door (despite it being August). The door, opened by some random patron exiting the shop, lay at my back, totally out of sight, such that I couldn't have orchestrated its opening and my reading the phrase even subconsciously -- yet the two had coincided perfectly, as is patternistic of this phenomenon (and of the dozen or so similar occurrences that had transpired that day alone).

To this, my inner skeptic had no rebuttal. I sat silently for a moment, then laughed.

But, striking at this was, it wasn't through (whatever "it" is).

A minute later, a couple paragraphs down in my book, the phrase was repeated, exactly: "A bell jingled." And, again, a jingling bell coincided perfectly with my reading the words (albeit from a different door this time).

My skeptic and I shared another telling silence, then I refreshed my laugh.