Last Friday the news reported that Jack Palance had died. My first thought was, "didn't he die a couple of years ago?" I liked Palance. I grew up with Ripley's Believe It or Not and thought he was great in anything that I saw him in. I clearly remembered hearing several years ago Jack Palance had died. Despite having a clear recollection of this previous event I passed it off as a figment of my imagination. Recently, however, I discovered many other people having the same feeling.
Performing a search on Google for "jack palance already died" will turn up a surprising number of people who are sharing the same sentiments. Although most people, like I did, pass it off as just one of "those things." Many of the people who have commented on this have made comments that would infer that they did not assume that he was already dead, but that they remember him having died.
Several people, can actually put a specific time-frame to it: shortly after the 2004 Oscars where he performed his astounding one-handed push ups.
Furthermore, in poking around on various forums I cam across a comment from someone who had something similar happen to him or her regarding the death, or non-death, of Arthur C. Clarke. This person was surprised to learn that Arthur C. Clarke was indeed still alive. I too was surprised, and shocked, to learn that my favorite author was still alive.
I happen to have a very vivid recollection of reading the story on BBC News. I recall the manner in which he died (peacefully in his sleep, no heart attack, just old age), Parliament issuing a statement calling for a National Day of Mourning, and the fact that he was going to be buried in Sri Lanka, not England.
Finding all of this amazing I consulted a friend. When I told him of many people recalling Jack Palance's previous death he wasn't too interested. However, when I mentioned Arthur C. Clarke's (non)death he because interested because he too has that recollection. I emailed several other friends with vague questions, trying to gauge whether or not other people may have thought the same thing. I was careful not to lead them. Three people responded immediately:
- One person didn't have any unusual reactions.
- One was certain that Arthur C. Clarke was currently dead and was surprised to learn that he was not. He was not surprised when he learned of Palance's recent death though.
- One was certain that both men had died several years ago. He did not hear of Palance's recent death, and was very surprised to learn of that and the fact that Arthur C. Clarke was indeed still alive. this person can also remember the same time-frame that others mentioned regarding Jack Palance's first death.
Certianly that was an unscientific poll and it proves nothing, but when put into context with the hundreds of comments on the net it does help to establish a pattern. The pattern is that there have been two "realities" co-existing. To establish whether or not these "realities" are a product of imaginations or a product of quantum irregularities will be difficult. We can speculate mass-hysteria and mistaken identities, or perhaps time-shifts and parallel universes. But it would be great to hear from other people who have experienced similar things, specifically with these two people.