It’s a sitcom cliche, when everyone thinks the same thing but nobody wants to be the first to say it. Eventually it slips out accidentally or is revealed by a third party, and the tension ends and everyone’s happy. It’s a recognizable archetype to which everyone can relate, and it’s the kind of thing that can be made to fit nicely into a half hour show.

In real life it’s not so simple; there’s always the question, does anyone else think this but me? And nobody wants to be the first to say anything, because all too often the agreement was a fantasy, pure imagination. Why can’t real life be more like television?

The real problem is patterns. I see them, even when they’re not there. I’m not quite at A Beautiful Mind level, but I’m close enough to see where it comes from. And, like the fictionalized Nash, all too often the patterns are entirely in my head; I want to see connections, I want to assume that if B follow A then A caused B. It’s hard.