Monday, March 23, 2009

Entry: Baader-Meinhof phenomenon

This is one of those things that requires theremin-heavy music in the background.

That'll do. Read on.

I StumbleUpon-ed the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon article this afternoon. The Baader-Meinhof phenomenon, something I'm sure everyone's experienced at least once, is that bizarre synchronicity whereupon you learn something for the first time and then hear about it again a short time later. The term itself was coined by someone writing an editorial in the St. Paul Pioneer Press about experiencing the B-M P; their readership responded overwhelmingly with similar stories.

I was glad to know that this is apparently a Thing, but didn't think I was going to write about it... until tonight! David Malki of Wondermark notoriety had Twittered about using the Valsalva maneuver; I made note of the unfamiliar phrase, but antithetical to my nature, did not Wiki it. I know, I'm disappointed in myself too. But then, not an hour later, I was goofing around on the Straight Dope, and Cecil Adams explained the very same Valsalva maneuver in the article I was reading! And, the Valsalva maneuver just happens to be exhaling forcibly with your mouth and nose closed to clear your ear canals, which I do all the damn time because my inner ear bits get congested especially during allergy season!

Baader-Meinhof phenomenon! Spooky stuff!


Pooka said...


(Not really. But I do get a weird sense of pleasure from performing the Manuever... that little sound of air rushing around is so soothing.)

Anonymous said...

Okay, it's a cliché joke, but actually I had just heard of the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon recently. So it's a sort of meta-BMP occurrence!

Anonymous said...

Weird but true: just had ANOTHER one. Actually involving Baader-Meinhof. I was looking at Oxford University Press's website, and the featured book is called "Baader-Meinhof: The Inside Story of the R.A.F."

So that's TWO meta-BMPs in a row. Freaky.

Anonymous said...

This is weird: You just mentioned Cecil Adams of Straight Dope, which I had just learned about three days ago. And this isn't the first time I've coincidentally heard of the Straight Dope in the last three days.

DBX said...

It's interesting how many thin layers of irony surround this whole topic

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Jim said...

Sadly, it seems like the deletionists got to that article... it's now gone. The only mention on WP is on the disambiguation page, and it's pretty short.

Too bad, there was some pretty good content there, and I learned about the concept from Wikipedia as well.

Seems to be a lot of that going around Wikipedia these days.

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