Thankful For Serendipity

Intuition, a hunch, listening to a hint I bought a new pair of jeans – just in time. The coolness wafting into my pants told me so.

Buy local! I do, or at least I try. South Whidbey has a (1) (one) place that calls itself a department store: Webbs. Clothing, bedding (which is just clothing for beds), shoes, socks, hats, etc. I tend to drop by as a treat every time I help someone buy or sell their house. Sometimes necessity urges action.

For the last two years I’ve worn one pair of jeans to the office. In some places, real estate brokers wear semi-formal wear and drive tastefully subdued luxury sedans. This is the south part of Whidbey Island. Sure, there are luxury properties, but I’m also likely to be stepping into the Before version of a fixer-upper, or strolling across fields or through forests. Jeans don’t get chewed up as much fine fabrics. Wingtips aren’t as practical as sandals that can be easily slipped on and off, or boots that can bash through brush.

Two years of my version of desk work, field work, and house work meant a hole grew in the knee. Not a very draft place. I’ll be getting there.


Recently I attended a county housing presentation, in the audience, this time. A young, stylish woman walked in wearing distressed jeans. The tastefully arranged holes and wear spots covered, or uncovered, about a third of where fabric should be. I pointed her out to an experienced fellow broker who understands women’s fashion because she is one. She pointed out to me that the young, stylish woman probably paid a lot more for her jeans than I did for mine, and achieved a completely different effect. Yep. Though, I may have paid for the hole in my jeans with lots of time, if not lots of money.

OK. After the last washing, the hole went from cute and easy to overlook to that’s not quite right. Break a habit and buy some pants for the first time in over two years. At least they’re mens jeans, not something that has to be sized, fitted, tailored, and pampered. As I paid for them the clerk asked whether I wanted a bag. Let’s see. They’re jeans. They better not bruise, tear, or break if I drop them. No bag necessary. Throw them across my shoulder, toss them in the truck, make fun of buying them as I walk into the office.

Before getting back to work, though, it made sense to visit the rest room. No need for details – but. As I walked back to my desk afterwards, I wondered if I’d sat in something. My butt felt far too cool. Discreetly put my hand on my butt hoping not to find a wet spot. None. Instead I felt my skin. Uh oh.


I wasn’t sure which would be worse, a wet spot or a hole. A wet spot could be temporary. A hole in the seat, however, could’ve been there for as long as the hole in the knee. Who knew? Literally. Who knew? Who knew but hadn’t told me? Someone in the office? Folks on the street? Clients? No one. No one noticed. Whew.

The washing that expanded the knee’s wear spot weakened the backside, but didn’t expose it – at least not in a way that anyone noticed. I may have just noticed it as it happened.

It is easy to forget about such events, but it made me think. Why did I have the sudden intuition or hunch to Go Buy Pants Now? What hints did my subconscious notice that I missed? I don’t know. I respect my subconscious but we rarely converse, and if dreams are our conversations then we have a lot of learning to do about communicating.

I believe in intuition and inspiration. … At times I feel certain I am right while not knowing the reason.” – Albert Einstein

About the time I became a real estate broker I was also pursuing other possibilities. Each had costs and benefits. My intuition suggested I become a broker. (Getting turned down for some of the other offers limited the field, too.) Since then, three of those jobs have vanished. Each was a steadier income. Some even had benefits like healthcare. All were more temporary than my conscious mind expected.

Getting older means unavoidably accumulating experiences. My intuition at twenty had less to work with than my intuition at sixty. As I look back, I find that following my intuition would not have been a panacea; but my biggest mistakes were when I didn’t follow my intuition. I did what I ‘should’, what I was supposed to do. An exercise I’ve worked from both ends is; “What advice would you give your younger self?” and the flip was to find someone older and ask them for the advice they wished they received at my age. (See Thirty Year Wisdom for that result.) My advice to me has been to trust myself more.

The only person that lives every moment of your life is you. Anyone trying to give you advice can only become aware of a small slice of your experiences. Many are very good at doing so, usually by narrowing the topic to something they have studied. None of us can be consciously aware of everything, which is why it is good to keep a council of advisors handy.

Advisors aren’t the people who will live my life. I live my life. The future is unknowable. Decisions made today will have a shifting set of unpredictable consequences. I know I won’t always pick right. I have enough examples of that, already. But I’ve found there’s one advisor who at least knows me the best, and is intimately tied to how my life is lived. My intuition may not speak the same language, but I’m becoming more confident in listening to its hints. In at least one instance, it’s saved me from mooning the people around me. Now, that’s valuable. Thank you, me.

PS My frugal friends quickly pointed out that a rip right below the pocket is the worst because it is difficult to turn them into cutoffs or garden pants. My ultra-frugal friends quickly concocted ways to patch it from the inside. Quick advice, and fun to watch them deliver it because they’d experienced it, too.

About Tom Trimbath

real estate broker / consultant / entrepreneur / writer / photographer / speaker / aerospace engineer / semi-semi-retired More info at: and at my amazon author page:
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2 Responses to Thankful For Serendipity

  1. Sue Averett says:

    That was fun reading, Tom. 🙂

  2. Pattie Beaven says:

    You know! You can turn those jeans into a workout sandbag! Reuse, Recycle, Reduce your waste and your waist! Just sayin’!

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