Believing In Good Or Bad Luck ~ All A Matter Of Perspective

Not The Best Solution For A Runny Nose!

This is not the best solution for a runny nose! He IS a cutie, though!
This is not the best solution for a runny nose! He IS a cutie, though! | Source

Rod Stewart ~ Some Guys Have All The Luck ~

Good Luck Or Bad Luck, It's All A Matter Of Perspective...

I remember reading a story in the news a while back about a man who had a runny nose. This wasn't just any runny nose. This was a constant drip, drip, drip that went on for at least eighteen months. Nothing he did would stop it. He took medications and had to constantly keep tissues with him. It was not only annoying, at times it was embarrassing as well.

He found out through medical tests that this wasn't your run of the mill ... kind of like a pun... runny nose. Nope, this was his brain fluid leaking down into his nose and dripping. Constantly, non-stop. I remember when I saw this story, my first thought was "this is what probably would have happened to me, because 'I'm just lucky that way.'"

There was a happy ending for him, though. His doctors WERE able to do surgery and repair where the leak had been and the man is now free from his continuous runny nose. I bet he is VERY glad about that!

Anyway, after my initial reaction of ewwww and feeling a little nauseous at the very thought of what had been happening to that man for over a year... I thought of that phrase that first popped into my head "I'm just lucky that way." I thought about all the times I've carelessly used that phrase. It isn't that I've had any more of a share of bad luck than any other person in the world.

In fact, I bet I've had a lot more good luck than many people have had in life and not so much bad luck. It's just that the bad luck times are the ones that we are more prone to remember. They seem to stand out in our memories and become ingrained, making us think we surely must have more bad luck than others.

I think it's really all a matter of perspective. If you look at life in a grateful way, feeling as if you really have been lucky and try to take life with an attitude of thankfulness and gratitude, I believe things will seem to you as if you've had some very good luck in life after all.

This whole luck and life thing got me thinking and I began to do some research on the Internet, because I am a curious person by nature. I found one story that was mind blowing to me. It was about people who might just be some of the unluckiest people in the entire world. Bad luck just seems to follow them wherever they go, unrelenting and hounding them in a persistent way.

A Pretty Lightning Show Over Las Cruces, New Mexico

Seven times Roy Sullivan was struck by lightning, overcoming 22 Septillion to ONE odds of that happening.
Seven times Roy Sullivan was struck by lightning, overcoming 22 Septillion to ONE odds of that happening. | Source

The Unsinkable Titanic ~ Or Not ~ One Woman Survived The Sinking Of Three Different Ships ~

The Titanic at the Southhampton Docks.
The Titanic at the Southhampton Docks. | Source

Three Of The Unluckiest People On The Planet! No, Seriously ~

I came across these articles about some of the unluckiest people in the world, and two of these unfortunate souls had stories that really stood out for me.

First, there was a man who once worked as a Park Ranger for the U.S. Park Service, in the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. His name was Roy Sullivan and the reason he is so unlucky? He was struck by lightning seven times.

Now the chance of getting hit by lightning just one time in a person's life is about 3,000 to 1. Those are some pretty steep odds. Once you get to your SEVENTH time of lightning bolts landing somewhere on your body, I think it's time to play the lottery. Because you have just successfully overcome 22 SEPTILLION to 1 odds as if they are an everyday occurrence.

Scientists have tried to explain this guy's... unique... attractiveness to lightning bolts - without much success. They attempted to claim that it was because of his job, working in the forest where there is a tendency for thunderstorms to naturally occur. But they never could come up with an acceptable likely reason for him being struck seven times by lightning.

The first time he was hit was in 1942. He was working in a lookout tower, when suddenly a bolt of lightning hit his leg and exited through his big toe... and in the coolest thing ever to happen to a person, it shot his toenail into the air. OK, so maybe I'm the only one who thinks that cool... ehem. It's that bizarre sense of humor of mine again kicking in.

He was also hit another time while he was driving down the side of a mountain. Once, he was hit while fishing and again while he was INSIDE of one of the Ranger stations. When lightning begins to search for you inside of a building, I'd say Houston, we have a problem (in this case, Virginia, we have a problem).

At one point, a lightning strike set Roy Sullivan's hair on fire, so he thought it would be a good idea to carry water around with him wherever he went. The next time lightning struck him, it hit his ankle, so the water did no good whatsoever.

I guess Roy Sullivan really could have said "I'm just lucky that way" and meant it!


Another Unlucky Soul ~ Violet Jessop


Another atrociously unlucky person was a lady by the name of Violet Jessop. She was unlucky for quite a different reason. She was on-board THREE different ships in her lifetime, all of which sank. What are the odds of that? I don't even want to know!

The first ship she was on was a sister ship of Titanic, called the Olympic. This was in the year 1911, and she was a stewardess on-board the ship. In September of 2011, this ship collided with a British warship.

Feeling as if she should probably look for someplace else to work, she promptly found a new job ~ on the Titanic. We all know how that one ended. The captain of the Olympic was, coincidentally, also the captain of the Titanic, Edward J. Smith. You might think AHA, that HAD to be the reason for the two ships sinking!

Still, what could the chances have been that the same woman would be on both ships when they sank? Violet made it into one of the lifeboats on-board the Titanic, and found her way to safety. She watched incredulously from the lifeboat as the Titanic went under, first one end and then the other, kind of like in the movie. I can't begin to imagine what thoughts were going through her head as she watched the Titanic go down.

This isn't the end of her story, however. She decided to take a break from working jobs on the sea for a few years. Then, in 1916, she accepted a job on-board a third ship. This one was called The Britannic. There was no way this could happen again, right? Wrong. This unfortunate ship ran into a mine and sank. Violet made it onto another lifeboat, only this lifeboat didn't get far enough away from the ship.

Violet found herself having to JUMP into the water this time and thought, this is it. She hit her head on the boat's keel, and she miraculously survived... for the third time. She made it back to dry land.

She died in 1971 of heart failure. And guess what? She was buried at sea. A "fitting" or is that an "ironic" end to one especially unlucky person's life.


Last But Not Least ~ The Unluckiest, Luckiest Man!

Then there is the story of a music teacher from Croatia who escaped death while being involved in seven accidents in his lifetime. Yes, you read that right ~ seven different times he escaped being killed, while there were other casualties in some of these accidents.

The first one is said to have happened in the winter of 1962, when this music teacher, Frane Selak, was on a train going through a canyon. It was freezing cold and raining at the time, and the train ended up being derailed. Most of the train ended up in a river. Fortunately for Selak, however, someone was able to reach him and pull him to the shore and to safety. In that unfortunate accident, seventeen other people lost their lives.

In 1963, he decided to take a trip in a plane and it turned out to be the last time for him. One of the doors on the plane malfunctioned, and he was pulled through a hole in the plane door. He managed to land on a soft enough haystack and survived the ordeal. Unfortunately, nineteen other people lost their lives in this mishap.

Frane Selak's third brush with death came about in 1966, a mere three years later. It turned out that a bus that he was in careened off the road and into an icy river. Four people perished in this incident, while Mr. Selak was able to swim to the shore and suffered only bruises and cuts.

The fourth incident happened in 1970 when a car he was driving caught on fire. He managed to get free of the car before the fuel tank blew the car up. In 1973, a fuel pump in a car he was driving began to leak. A leak of oil caused fire to blow in through his air vents, causing him to be burned and have his hair badly singed, but he was fortunate not to have other injuries.

The next incident happened in 1995, when Frane Selak was hit by a bus in the town of Zagreb. Fortunately, he only had minor injuries in this mishap.

The last incident happened in 1996 when he was involved in a major head-on crash with a United Nations truck. It happened on the curve of a mountain where the accident caused his car to break through a guardrail. Because he wasn't wearing a seat belt, he was ejected from the vehicle, which ended up saving his life as he watched his car plunge down the mountainside.

In an even more bizarre twist of fate, he won the lottery, over a million dollars. This happened coincidentally just a couple days after his 73rd birthday. He married his fifth wife about this time and a few years later, he ended up giving most of the money away, opting for a more frugal way of life. He decided that money didn't matter. Because of all the experiences he had in his lifetime, he was lucky just to be alive and he wanted to share his winnings with others who could use the money.

There are definitely lessons to be learned from Frane Selak's fascinating, seemingly tandem unlucky and lucky life. It just takes a bit of thought to glean those lessons from his incredible story.


Not Even Close To Being So Unlucky

Now I think the next time I say to myself how unlucky I am... I will look back and remember these two unfortunate souls an think... I am NOT so unlucky after all, in fact, I am VERY lucky!

Yes I am! I am blessed beyond belief lucky. Geez, I feel my nose starting to drip... can it be? Nah, no way... there it went again. It can't be.... I need to go find a kleenex~ brain fluid? No way ~ I can't possibly be THAT unlucky!

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Comments 20 comments

hawaiianodysseus profile image

hawaiianodysseus 3 years ago from Southeast Washington state

Very interesting, Kathy! That poor man who got struck by lightning 7 times...how was it that he never died? That in itself makes him LUCKY! Thanks for sharing! Aloha, my friend!

Joe


moneyfairy profile image

moneyfairy 3 years ago

Kathy this is a very interesting hub. That both of these people you mentioned survived such bizarre incidents is beyond me. Wow!! It definitely makes us feel lucky for not having those things happen to us. I voted you up and interesting. Thanks for this info. Wow amazing!!


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

Wow what a great write and I have always just loved that Rod Stewart video! ^


kidscrafts profile image

kidscrafts 3 years ago from Ottawa, Canada

Interesting and funny!

In fact, I think those two persons are quite lucky!

A lot of people don't survive to be hit by lightning only once.... and he did it 7 times! It's a miracle that Roy Sullivan survived all that!

And Violet Jessop, surviving three sinking boat...wow!

One thing for sure.... I would have avoid walking to close to him! And for sure I would not have travelled in the same boat as Violet Jessop!

Thanks for sharing! Very interesting!


KathyH profile image

KathyH 3 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

You're very welcome, Joe! I'm so glad you enjoyed this! I wondered the same thing, how in the world he was struck by lightning seven times, while still staying alive. He must have had some element of good luck on his side for sure! Thanks so much for your great comment! :) Aloha to you too! :)


KathyH profile image

KathyH 3 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

Glad you enjoyed this, moneyfairy! I was amazed too at how both of these people survived their ordeals! Thanks so much for the votes, I really appreciate them! :)


KathyH profile image

KathyH 3 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

Thank you too, Jackie! :) Rod is a cutie for sure!! I love that song and video, too. Thanks so much for your great comment!


KathyH profile image

KathyH 3 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

I know what you mean, kidscrafts! I wouldn't have wanted to be near to either one of them, either! I'd be afraid some of their "luck" might rub off!

I'm so glad you liked this, thanks so much for reading and for your great comment, I appreciate that! :)


travmaj profile image

travmaj 3 years ago from australia

Love reading this and made me think - I change my mind all the time. I mean when things go well I have been known thank my lucky stars.

After reading all the stories - wow - did they experience bad luck or good? Bad because they were in a terrible situation or good luck because they were able to survive it all.

Very impressive and most entertaining. Thanks


KathyH profile image

KathyH 3 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

Thanks for your thoughtful comment, travmaj! I would say it was about half and half, bad luck and good! :) Bad things that happened, and lucky they did survive. So glad you found this entertaining! Thanks again!


SilentReed profile image

SilentReed 3 years ago from Philippines

The two examples you use prove your point that luck is a matter of perspective or our attitude towards adverse situations. Comparing our life circumstance with others also affect our idea of luck. Trying to live up to the Joneses and being frustrated, we become envious and think we are unlucky. We take for granted the many things we have to be grateful for. If we should happen to win the lottery, well, that's a very welcome addition.:)


KathyH profile image

KathyH 3 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

I agree, SilentReed! :) You said it well! We need to try to be more grateful for all that is GOOD in our lives! :) Thanks so much for commenting, I appreciate that!


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean

Very interesting! Those stories seem unexplainable, but maybe someday someone will make sense of them. If not, good and bad luck continues to be the default answer.


KathyH profile image

KathyH 3 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

That's so true, Ms.Dora! I wonder in the case of the guy being hit by lightning so many times, if they might find a physical reason for it in the future. Great comment! Thanks so much for reading and commenting! I appreciate that! :-)


GetitScene profile image

GetitScene 3 years ago from The High Seas

I don't think I believe in luck (although I have been extremely blessed in life). As a young lad everyone around me used to have 'bad luck' and it often splashed onto me, making my life somewhat difficult. I decided to pack up and leave everyone and everything I knew and viola! No more bad luck around me.


KathyH profile image

KathyH 3 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

That's a really interesting take on the subject, Getitscene! :) I do believe those around us can affect some parts of the "luck" equation for sure! Thanks so much for your great comment! :)


susansisk profile image

susansisk 3 years ago from Georgia, USA

Great hub! I have heard of the lightning survivor, but unbelievable about the woman who was on the three sinking ships.


KathyH profile image

KathyH 3 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

I thought that was pretty unbelievable too, Susan! I found it fascinating, though, and it made me think of how really lucky I have been in life, compared to the things these people went through! Thanks so much for your great comment! :)


B. Leekley profile image

B. Leekley 2 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

Up, Useful, and Interesting. Taoists tell the story of a poor farmer who had only his son and one horse, a stallion, to help him. One night the horse broke out of the corral and ran away. "How unlucky!" the neighbors said. Next morning the horse returned leading several wild mares. "How lucky!" the neighbors said. Father and son got busy taming the wild horses, and one of them bucked off the young man in such a way that he broke a leg. "How unlucky!" the neighbors said. The son had his leg in a cast when the army of that country came by, looking for recruits to draft, so they didn't take him. "How lucky!" the neighbors said. I forget the rest of the story. Can you make up some more lucky and unlucky experiences the farmer had?

I decided years ago that calling an experience lucky or unlucky is presumptuous. Like one time my boss where I was working called me into his office, I thought to praise me, but instead he said he was not keeping me past my trial period, because they were looking for a less quiet personality. I was left stranded, broke, and in debt. As a direct result I ended up becoming a used book dealer for nearly 30 years, doing work I loved. Another time I thought I was one of the luckiest men in the world when my lover and I were choosing a minister to marry us, but she left instead and left me with a broken heart, but eventually that loss made possible the gain of my wife, whom I cherish. Who knows what's lucky and what's unlucky?


KathyH profile image

KathyH 2 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada Author

You've added such a fascinating and beautiful perspective to this. Thank you so much for your wonderful, thoughtful comment! :)

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