So, msnbc has a story about a waitress who was given her own–previously stolen–driver’s license from a customer who was trying to prove she was 21.

The 22-year-old waitress, whose name was not released, called police last week and said she had been handed her own stolen driver’s license by a woman trying to prove she was 21. The woman, who became suspicious of the delay as the waitress went to call police, fled the Moosehead Saloon, but her companion provided her name.

Clearly, this is a case of supernatural intervention, aka “design,” as evidenced by this quote from a local police officer:

“The odds of this waitress recovering her own license defy calculation,” police Capt. Guy Turner said Monday.

Someone contact the Discovery Institute, stat!

Or, this may simply be a coincidence–an event with no metaphysical significance at all, made more likely by the fact that the two girls frequent the same bars in two fairly small (pop ~55,000 and 30,000) Ohio towns.

Nah, that’s too logical. Must have been God.

Comments

  1. #1 Mark Paris
    August 1, 2006

    If “defy calculation” means “I don’t know how to calculate it,” then the police captain is probably correct. I suspect this is the case. It’s also probably correct if he is simply being hyperbolic. I wouldn’t want to be graded strictly on my own calculation of the odds. On the other hand, maybe he does believe in miracles. In that case, he probably belives it’s a miracle every time someone wins a big lottery. Personally, I’m going with your idea of coincidence.

  2. #2 Tara C. Smith
    August 1, 2006

    Oh, I don’t mean the police officer thought it was due to God; just that these kind of natural occurrences are hijacked by the DI all the time as “proof” of intelligent intervention.

  3. #3 jepler
    August 1, 2006

    If we’re given that the woman is a bartender and the ID was stolen to use as ID to purchase alcohol, and the theif is dumb as a post, it doesn’t seem that unlikely that she would eventually be shown her stolen ID.

  4. #4 Joseph Hertzlinger
    August 1, 2006

    This makes sense to me. The problem with ID theories is that they make the development of complex life look like the result of a different set of laws than the rest of reality.

    This also means that the fact that scientists don’t try to guess God’s plan while investigating evolution should not be held against them any more than the fact that the police don’t try to guess God’s plan while investigating credit card fraud.

    This might be a way to get potential Creationists to stop being suspicious of science.

  5. #5 brachiator
    August 2, 2006

    Clearly, God Manipulated the fake ID (I mean “fake identification,” not “fake intelligent design…” Whew!) with His Noodly Appendages back into the clutches of she for whom He Intended It.

    He has little else to Do these days.

  6. #6 MT
    August 2, 2006

    The miracle is that a 22 year-old’s license could prove anybody is 21. I hypothesize a typo, thus excluding the involvement by any Entity, Whose typing must be Divine by definition.

  7. #7 Stephen Uitti
    August 3, 2006

    The odds of winning the big jackpot at the state lottery are negligible. No one has to win, yet, every now and then, someone wins. A good thing, too, at least for the game owners. When someone wins, people who are inclined to play get the idea that it is possible to win, and play the game.

    I don’t see how this waitress’ story is much different. Except the poetic justice part. The poetic justice bit is assigned after the story is complete, of course.

    Let me get this straight. The DI jumped on this ID story to promote ID? Doh! Good fundamentalists shouldn’t be having anything to do with alcohol.

  8. #8 Ginger Yellow
    August 3, 2006

    I had the same thought as MT. “Look, I am 21! My licence says so.” “It says you’re 22.” “Oh, yeah. Right.”

  9. #9 John Spiteri
    April 10, 2009

    Your sarcasm only betrays a high level of ignorance. the chances in the case you mention are 1/300 million or thereabouts – if they lived in the same state or indeed same area, much much less. On the other hand the chances of a 200 part system forming by chance is 1/10 to the power of 60. With a bit of mathematical knowledge and common sense you would say the is beyond probability – and then again an organism is usually made up of 10’s of thousands if not millions of parts. so if the officer thought that this incident was incalculable – go figure what we should make out of evolution.