Having read about it repeatedly in recent years, I am fairly well-versed in the phenomenon of the Mandela Effect. Regardless of articles read, and listening to testimonies by those who have experienced it, nothing prepared me for my own, personal “what in the name of all that makes sense is going on here?” Mandela Effect jolt.
I still am questioning my memory, checking and rechecking articles I have read before, and reexamining photographs I have looked at long and hard in the past. It is shocking and unsettling to have clear, concise learning and memories turned upside down, without a single clue explaining when or how everything on a subject changed, so radically.
For anyone who may not be fully aware of just what it is: The Mandela Effect is an observable phenomenon where people have clear memories of events that did not occur, or they misremember events and facts that did happen. There are various theories explaining the phenomenon; however, a prevailing theory among those who have studied evidence and testimonies places the cause squarely on memories implanted from parallel universes.
The name, itself, arose from a memory people around the world shared that Nelson Mandela died in prison in South Africa in the 1980s. Later, when he did die in 2013, they could only express their stunned disbelief. He already had died, and they watched his funeral on TV.
The list of events and items common to this phenomenon is lengthy and baffling, especially to anyone who attempts to understand what strange twist or turn made something become completely different. Just a few examples:
1. Oscar Mayer Hot Dogs. Is it Meyer or Mayer?
2. Is it Sex In The City or Sex And The City?
3. Does Uncle Pennybags in Monopoly have a monocle or not?
4. Is it Berenstain Bears or Berenstein Bears?
5. Is C-3PO all gold?
And what is my very own experience? I have to begin by stating I am wild about James Dean. I discovered him sometime in the ’80s, when I stumbled upon Rebel Without A Cause, and since then, have read everything I could find about him multiple times, attempting to know who he was, and what contributed to his amazing ability as an actor. There are not enough adjectives to describe his incredible presence on screen, and how devastated the world was when he was killed at age twenty-four in a grotesque automobile accident.
I knew everything there was to know about that horrible car crash, every gruesome detail. Until today. As I was reading a different online story, a reference to James Dean caught my eye, and I began reading the accompanying story.
The car he was driving and his destination were correct. But the rest was upside down. Until today, he was alone in his Porsche, and crashed into a truck driven by a local Paso Robles, California farmhand named, ironically, Donald Turnupseed, who drove his older truck onto the highway, attempting to cross it, pulling directly into Dean’s speeding path.
In the new version, Turnupseed is a twenty-three year old college student attending Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, California, and was driving a black and white 1950 Ford Tudor. He turned left in front of James Dean, and they hit practically head on. There are even photos of his car showing damage from the collision.
I was so surprised finding these new details, I read every article in Google to make sure it was not one mistaken piece. No. They all reported the same thing. As trivial as it is, this story is one more added to the legion of Mandela Effect stories; an incident, reported a certain way in a certain time, is now, more or less, the same, yet altered by forces we do not see, nor truly understand. Multiple dimensions? Time travel? Mind manipulation? We will know, someday. But not this day.