One time when Michigan State was playing UCLA in football, the score was tied at 14
with only seconds to play. Duffy Daugherty, Michigan State's coach, sent in placekicker
Dave Kaiser who booted a field goal that won the game.
When the kicker returned to the bench, Daugherty said, "nice going, but you didn't
watch the ball after you kicked it."
"That's right, Coach," Kaiser replied. "I was watching the referee
instead to see how he'd signal it. I forgot my contact lenses, and I couldn't see the goal
Bits & Pieces, September 15, 1994, pp. 7-8.
Hoagy Carmichael, the story goes, once decided to take up golf. Lessons were arranged with an instructor. At the first session
Carmichael was patiently shown the basics of the game: how to hold the club, How to stand, how to swing, etc.
Finally, after a half hour of this, the instructor felt Carmichael was ready to drive a few toward the first hole. The
ball was teed up. Hoagy stepped up to it, swung, then watched the ball sail down the fairway, bound onto the green and roll
into the cup--a hole in one!
The instructor was dumbfounded. Hoagy flipped the club to a caddy with a jaunty motion, then turned to the still speechless
instructor. "OK," he said casually, "I think I've got the idea now."
Bits & Pieces, January 9, 1992, pp.
William Lamm was scuba diving when he was sucked into an offshore water intake pipe for a nuclear power plant. He
traveled 1650 feet at seven feet per second before he was spat into a canal at the power station. The hands on his watch (Timex) glow in the
Edwin Robinson became blind and deaf after a truck accident. Nine years later he was struck by lightning and within hours his
vision and hearing were restored.
On NBC's Tonight Show, Johnny Carson read an item from the lost-and-found column of a
Midwestern newspaper: "Lost dog--brown fur, some missing due to mange, blind in one eye, deaf, lame leg due
to recent traffic accident, slightly arthritic. Goes by the name of 'Lucky.'"
I am a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.
Stephen Leacock, in Bits & Pieces, December, 1989, p. 12.
Luck is a matter of preparation meeting opportunity.