As a writer of any sort, details are important. In journalistic pieces, the correct details are critical. In fiction, the details can be parts of patterns, clues for the reader, used to set the scene, and to have fun with.
In real life, there is a randomness to details at times and this is one fun tale I wanted to share.
Recently, I was spending a Sunday with Little Sis (I’m part of Big Brothers Big Sisters), and in telling me a story (she’s 16), she mentioned that she has little kids call her Peanut Butter. Of course I asked why. She giggled and said because most little kids can’t pronounce her name, but they all like peanut butter and can say that.
Okay. We continued with our day. One stop was a used book store. As we were checking out, the booksmith randomly mentioned an article in a recent magazine for writers that talked about a particular writer’s passion for peanut butter.
All we had said to him before that was, ‘hi, thanks for having the AC on today.’ I wasn’t purchasing a magazine, hadn’t mentioned the author he brought up, and there was no way he could know about us and peanut butter. So random!
Later, Little Sis and I headed to a pet shop (it’s so fun to check out the cats up for adoption and roam the aisles to meet the dogs who get to shop with their owners.) As we’re driving to the pet store, we passed a Salvation Army location. On the sign, I can’t make this stuff up, was “Donations needed: peanut butter and ” (I can’t remember the second item).
Three times in less than 4 hours. What were the odds? I laughed, told her what I saw (we drove past too fast for me to read the sign, tell her, and for her to turn around to see it). She just said, “You’re weird, Lisa.”
We’re then at the pet store. We ooh and ahh at the cats and I read the details. No joke, one of the cats was named Peanut Butter. I threw up my hands, said “no way,” told Little Sis to check out the name, and then we both lost it to laughter. The cat was black and white.
Of all the places to run into ‘peanut butter’, I feel those are 4 unique ones. And they did all happen on 1 day. I haven’t seen any references to peanut butter out of context since.
I could write a fun children’s story from this, don’t you think?
Can you recall a time you had this type of randomness with something? Was it in real life, or something you read? Or maybe something you wrote?
Lisa J. Jackson is a New England-region journalist and a year-round chocolate and iced coffee lover. She’s been a Big Sister for over 7 years and enjoys time with her Little Sis. She writes fiction as Lisa Haselton, has an award-winning blog for book reviews and author interviews, and is on the staff of The Writer’s Chatroom. Connect with her on Facebook or Twitter.