When Did This Start, for You? (Two-week survey)

calendarIn private correspondence, I’ve received information that might relate to when the timeslip (or slide, or reality shift) happened for many people.

To confirm this, I need your help. The year it happened for you may be important.

That is, not necessarily a date when you thought an external event happened (like Mandela’s death), but when you noticed that some (or many) things had changed.

In the past, some readers have referenced a near-death experience and — after that — everything seemed different. It’s like they woke up in a slightly different reality.

Others have talked about a sudden awareness of something major being different… and, on exploring it, they discovered a lot of other things had changed, too.

Right now, I’ve paused my other research to survey the thousands of past comments and emails I’ve received, tabulating the years that relate to this question.  This may be very important.

Now, I need your help to clarify whether sliding (or slipping, or shifting) seemed to happen during specific years.

I hope you’ll leave a comment, at this post (not at Major Memories, etc.), and tell me if you feel that many major things seemed to change at a certain point — a particular year.

If it did, let me know what year it was.

If you explained the change to yourself as something related to an event — a near-death experience, or a traumatic event in your life — it may help to know about that, too. (I don’t need the details, just a reference to the kind of event it was.)

It may also help if you can tell me what country you were in when that happened. (If it’s a large country, like the U.S., the state or general location — northeast, southwest, etc. — may be helpful.)

But, mostly, I need the year when you feel you first noticed that the world was a little (or a lot) different than it had been, prior to that time.

(If you feel that you’ve shifted realities multiple times, please list the years, if you can, but also let me know if one year seemed like an especially major shift.)

Note: To avoid any “me, too” influence, all comments will be hidden from view for two weeks. After that, I’ll make all responses (at this post) public, and follow-up with my conclusions.

Poll: Mandela’s Death (Poll is Closed)

This is the first of several polls I’m using to find patterns in alternate memories.

If you recall Nelson Mandela’s death prior to December 2013, I hope you’ll remember (or provide a thoughtful guess about) the year — in the 1980s — you think he died.

Please vote just once, and for just one year. The default — remembering his death in 2013 — is included for those who want to register that they don’t have the alternate Mandela memory.


This poll is closed! Poll activity:
start_date 2014-12-05 12:47:12
end_date 2015-03-27 01:01:23
Poll Results:
If you recall the death of Nelson Mandela in the 1980s, which year makes the most sense?

Jif or Jiffy Peanut Butter?

Jif peanut butter ad, 1960

Jif peanut butter ad, 1960

Do you recall Jif peanut butter launching as “Jiffy”?  Apparently, this alternate memory is fairly widespread.

Discussing the history of peanut butter, PeanutButterLovers.com insists:
“1955: Procter & Gamble entered the peanut butter business, introduced Jif in 1958. Now owned by the J.M. Smucker Company, Jif operates the world’s largest peanut butter plant, producing 250,000 jars every day!”

I was raised with another brand of peanut butter, so I can’t be confident my “Jif v. Jiffy” memories are accurate. However, many readers clearly recall “Jiffy” as the original brand name.

(And, before anyone insists people are mixing it up with Skippy: I’m pretty sure the advertising has always made the difference clear.)

Here are some of the many comments about this topic.

On 23 Jan 15, Rick asked:

Does anyone else have a memory of the peanut butter brand Jif previously being called Jiffy? I recall having seen this change somewhere around the age of 10 (1989), and it sticks with me because even at that young age I actually considered that I may have jumped to a parallel universe. However part of the memory I’m not as sure of is discovering that it was in fact a name change by the company. At least this is what I’ve always thought until finding this website caused me to look that fact up. It seems that at least in this reality there was never a name change and it has always been Jif.

On 24 Jan, Chris said:

I have goosebumps about this one. I always remember it as “Jiffy” and commercials when I was young about how moms could whip up a sandwich “in a Jiffy.”

After Googling it, we aren’t the only ones who remember it as Jiffy.

Julia said:

Yes, I do remember. I was absolutely 100% sure it was Jiffy when I read your comments. Then I started questioning myself a little. I was born in 1964. My mom is pretty “brand loyal” and always had peanut butter in the house and it was always Jiffy, not Peanut Pan or Skippy. I had so many peanut butter sandwiches as a kid (no jelly, just PB) that I don’t even buy peanut butter now. I do have a vague memory of hearing/seeing “Jif” on a commercial and wondering why they had abbreviated it. I’m questioning myself because I read someone else’s comments on this on line and they mentioned “Jiffy Pop Popcorn” which we also had as a treat sometimes. Even though I am familiar with the company slogan, “Choosy moms choose Jif”, perhaps at one time they said, “Choosy moms choose Jiffy.” Jif on the bottle looks funny but more convincing to me is just the “sound memory” of the name “Jiffy” as a kid. I can’t be as sure of this alternate memory as I am of a few of my others, but I figure if the other changes are possible, this might be too.

Piper asked:

At first glance I too thought it was called Jiffy as well, but after thinking about it I wonder if we are perhaps mixing up Jif peanut butter with Jiffy Pop popcorn?

In February 2015, deanna said:

yes ,not only do i remember “jiffy” being on the peanut butter label yet i remember the commercial said “choosey moms choose jif”

Julia did some research and reported:

I found some new information on the Jiffy / Jif peanut butter question. The man who created what is now called Jif Peanut Butter was William T. Young, who was from Lexington, Kentucky. He also bred horses , or at least he did after Jiffy Peanut Butter and other business ventures made him very rich. I found this out in a kind of backward way. I googled “Jiffy Peanut Butter” and came across a reference to a horse of the same name. Here is the horse’s pedigree.


I wondered who would own a horse with the name Jiffy Peanut Butter and I’m going to make a leap and say it was most likely Mr. Young, or someone familiar to him. If you look up William T. Young on Wikipedia, it says that he created W. T. Young Foods, which developed “Big Top” brand peanut butter, which was sold to Proctor & Gamble in 1955, and became Jif. However I found this link which shows a page from “Gambling in America, An Encyclopedia of History, Issues and Society.” I don’t know when the book was published, but from the text, it was before Young’s death in 2004. And it clearly states on page 209, that Young made a fortune developing, “JIFFY Peanut Butter.”

[Edited link: https://books.google.com/books?id=QAI9BgAAQBAJ&pg=PA209&lpg=PA209#v=onepage&q&f=false The book says: “Lexington, Kentucky, native William T. Young made a fortune developing Jiffy Peanut Butter and selling the brand to Procter and Gamble.” ]

…The name “Jif” on the label just looks weird and truncated to me, but none of my family remembered it being Jiffy. When I first noticed it, I thought it must be a name change, but supposedly not. But since there is evidence of “Jiffy Peanut Butter” having existed, it either really was changed, or there is “bleed-in” from the another reality…

dani feist said:

JifFY peanut butter.

Daniel said:

I remember Jiffy and spouse as well but the spouse says it was a brand name change….?

Julia went the extra mile:

Fiona, Daniel and all ME friends,

A few days ago I found Jif’s website and used their email to send a question. I said I clearly remembered the peanut butter being called Jiffy etc. and even gave the information I had found written regarding Jif’s creator, Williams T. Young (not that I expected them to respond to that) and they actually wrote back and said,

“Thank you for contacting The J.M. Smucker Company regarding Jif® Peanut Butter. We appreciate your interest in our Company and products. In response to your inquiry, the name Jif® was chosen because it was easy to say, spell and remember. This is the only name we have used. It was nationally launched in the late 50’s as Jif®.”

(Smuckers bought Jif from Procter and Gamble, fyi.)

That gave me a great starting point for my own research.

Many sites that reference William T. Young also seem to talk about his brand as either Jiffy or Jif. However, Young’s biography at Overbrook Farm says, “Young returned to Lexington… and started a peanut butter company. Big Top peanut butter later became Jif after Young sold W. T. Young Foods to Procter & Gamble in 1955.”

So, according to his business, Young’s peanut butter became Jif after he sold the company.

(That doesn’t match the Sigma Alpha Epsilon website, which lists their late member as “William T. Young – Businessman, Founder and former CEO of JIF peanut butter, University of Kentucky.” However, that’s a different conflict: whether the company was JIF or Big Top or William T. Young Foods.)

Returning to the Jiffy question, the Bright Side of the News article (at the Wayback Machine) says about Steve Wilhite, inventor of the GIF, and how he pronounces that acronym:

Wilhite prefers the sound of JIF, as in Jiffy Peanut Butter which has been rumored to be a staple in a programmer’s diet.

Even Amazon allows the “Jiffy” name in some of their Jif listings… which may only suggest that a lot of people type in “Jiffy” instead of the actual brand name.

Jiffy peanut butter product, in Amazon description

I tested this just entering “jif creamy peanut butter” in the search form, and it still came up as “Jiffy.” (However, that listing was created by a “Fulfilled by Amazon” seller, not Amazon itself. Clever marketing by that FBA seller!)

Jif leads to Jiffy at Amazon

Jiffy brand name among listings at AmazonAlso, Amazon lists “Jiffy” as a brand name (see screenshot on the right), but if you’re at Amazon and click on that link, it only returns the listing shown immediately above.

The Amazon listings only reinforce the confusion about the product name.

Still, it surprised me to see “Jiffy” in such popular use for Jif products.

Google ads confirm that by making use of the brand name “Jiffy.” (Any advertiser can choose search terms like this.)

Jiffy ads at Google

However,the book Julia found isn’t the only reference in print using the “Jiffy” peanut butter brand name.

In a May 1996 article, Sports of The Times;Lukas Lives The Life Of RileyThe New York Times reporter Harvey Araton said about Jif’s creator, William T. Young:

Alongside the gracious but taciturn Young, Lukas lit up the winner’s circle. The owner’s claim to fame is having created Jiffy peanut butter.

That’s odd. Did the NY Times not fact-check? While errors do slip past them, now and then, most proofreaders would have caught the Jif/Jiffy transposition, unless the proofreader also thought it was Jiffy.

So, this is a quirky topic. I’m wondering if — as with the TAPS v. Ghost Hunters issue — we can’t be sure if it’s a Mandela Effect issue, or an early media error that was repeated and amplified by the audience.

I did a Google Image Search looking for any ad or product package for “Jiffy” peanut butter, and — so far — I can’t find one.

If you clearly recall the product label as “Jiffy,” or if you have other insights about this topic, I hope you’ll leave a comment.

Doppelganger Questions

Meeting yourself - a doppelganger - represented in a painting

1864 painting: “How They Met Themselves”

Doppelgangers have been encountered for centuries.

A doppelganger (literally, a “double walker”) is the duplicate or double of of a living person.

Could both of them be the same person, but one is from an alternate reality, and has merely “slid” into this world?

That’s where this phenomenon might be relevant to the Mandela Effect.

In some cases, the “duplicate” person is only seen by other people. At other times, the person encounters himself.

For our studies, I’m not sure the distinction matters.

However, in the 19th century, some people believed the doppelganger predicted death. This is especially true in Irish literature, where the double is described as a Fetch.

(Its Scandinavia counterpart, Fylgja, relates to an animal whose appearance may sometimes predict death. So, it is not a true doppelganger.)

So far, no one has a satisfactory explanation for doppelganger-like phenomena.

Note: In popular use, the word “doppelganger” can refer to someone who’s a mere look-alike for someone else. (Dr. Who has featured many variations of this concept.)

Also, some politicians hire look-alikes for security or other reasons. (The 1993 movie, Dave, made use of this trope.) They’re sometimes referred to as doppelgangers.

That’s not what we’re talking about at this website.

Other literary tropes include these doppelgangers:

  • In Prometheus Unbound by Percy Bysshe Shelley, the concept of a doppelgänger double was described as a counterpart to the self.
  • Edgar Allan Poe’s story “William Wilson” describes the double with sinister, demonic qualities.
  • George Gordon Byron used doppelgänger imagery to explore the duality of human nature.
  • Charles Williams’ Descent Into Hell (1939), has character Pauline Anstruther seeing her own doppelgänger all through her life.
  • Clive Barker‘s story “Human Remains” in his Books of Blood is a doppelgänger tale.
  • Cathy MacPhail’s story, “Another Me” was a best-selling young adult novel, later made into a movie.

(Portions of that list courtesy of Wikipedia)

Shelley’s own encounter with a doppelganger remains one of the most baffling (and legendary). As described in a letter by his wife, Mary Wollestonecraft Shelley (author of the novel, Frankenstein):

…he told me that he had had many visions lately — he had seen the figure of himself which met him as he walked on the terrace and said to him — “How long do you mean to be content” — No very terrific words & certainly not prophetic of what has occurred. But Shelley had often seen these figures when ill; but the strangest thing is that Mrs Williams saw him. Now Jane, though a woman of sensibility, has not much imagination & is not in the slightest degree nervous — neither in dreams or otherwise. She was standing one day, the day before I was taken ill, [June 15] at a window that looked on the Terrace with Trelawny — it was day — she saw as she thought Shelley pass by the window, as he often was then, without a coat or jacket — he passed again — now as he passed both times the same way — and as from the side towards which he went each time there was no way to get back except past the window again (except over a wall twenty feet from the ground) she was struck at seeing him pass twice thus & looked out & seeing him no more she cried — “Good God can Shelley have leapt from the wall?…. Where can he be gone?” Shelley, said Trelawny — “No Shelley has past — What do you mean?” Trelawny says that she trembled exceedingly when she heard this & it proved indeed that Shelley had never been on the terrace & was far off at the time she saw him. [emphasis added]

About two weeks after this sighting, Percy Shelley was dead. The details and witness of his doppelganger make it a particularly compelling tale.

However, from a Mandela Effect viewpoint, what if the doppelganger is really “another you” from a different timestream? Recently, this possibility was raised by a reader.

Debs described the following incident:

The class was asked to take out the art projects that we stated the day before. I didn’t open my desk because I “knew” I didn’t have a project, thinking I was absent the day before….I had NO recollection of the day or the project. The teacher came over and asked why I hadn’t taken my project out and I informed her that I didn’t have one because I had been “absent” the day before. She said, “you were here yesterday, I worked on it with you”. She opened my desk and took out a project that had my name on it in what looked like my hand writing. I will NEVER forget that day. I was young and it scared me that I had no recollection of it when art and making things were my two favorite things to do.

Many science fiction tropes — including some used in Dr. Who — present the idea that timestreams should not cross so you “see yourself” in passing. (Of course, that may be rooted in the centuries-old folklore that seeing yourself means death… at least for one of you.)

Are doppelgangers further evidence of Mandela Effect? Might the “don’t see yourself” warning reflect something about the physics of this phenomenon?

Or, could doppelgangers be attributed to time travel, in general?  Is it more likely that the person who looks like you is actually someone else… perhaps a descendant? (As sci-fi as it sounds, is that more probable than a Mandela Effect encounter?)

Are there other explanations?

Note: If you’ve had a doppelganger experience, and you’d like to share it with others in a book, I hope you’ll contact me via the Doppelganger reports form. (Comments below will not be included in the book unless also submitted via the report form.)

Illustration: How They Met Themselves, by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, 1864, courtesy of the Fitzwilliam Museum, via Wikipedia.

Chartreuse: Red or Green?

Color wheel - which is chartreuse?The color chartreuse is broadly remembered as a shade of red. Some recall it as a maroon-ish red. Others describe it as a reddish magenta.

The fact is, in this timestream, the color is yellow-green. The color gets its name from the liqueur, Chartreuse.

However, I clearly recall a discussion with my mother, an artist, about the color chartreuse. I was a teen and used “chartreuse” to describe a magenta-ish dress. My mother couldn’t believe I was serious, and I remember looking in my childhood crayon box for a reddish crayon labeled “chartreuse,” but couldn’t find it.

It was a humiliating moment for me, because she was right and — in our household — that was like confusing Miro and Michelangelo. It just wasn’t done.

I didn’t think about it again until a comment about chartreuse appeared at this site. Then another did, and yet another. No matter how long I study this topic, I’m still astonished when a memory matches one of mine.

(Also, collecting comments for this article, I was amazed at how many there were. I’ve included many of them — not all — below, and apologize for the length of this article. I wanted to include enough to make it clear: This is a widespread alternate memory.)

Recent comments included the following.

In September 2014, Stephanie said:

I distinctly remember Chartreuse being a purple-pink color close to Magenta but a little darker. Less pink, more purple, but still too pink to be a true purple. I’m so confused??

In Oct 2014, Misty said:

…chartreuse was a dark red color…

Cas said:

I thought chartreuse was a rich sort of pinkish-magenta color?

I really thought chartreuse was a shade of red? Not green or yellow at all? When I clicked the Wikipedia link to see what color it is, I was so confused. I’m glad other people share in this confusion as well.
Seems like too pretty of a name for “lime green”. Ick. Doesn’t sit right with me.

I. K. said:

And yet the etymology makes perfect sense. Then again, that might be at the heart of the potential difference. So, if this Carthusian order, who’s liquor got the name associated with it, and lend itself to the name of the colour instead made a particular blend of red wine, perhaps Chartreuse would get a different colour association.

Honestly, without saying anything one way or the other on the matter, if I would have guessed without knowing, I’m certain I would have guessed it was a reddish colour. It does have the ring of a warm red drink to it.

(source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carthusians)

One of the JMs (we have two) said:

Yeah the whole color changing business is a weird one.

Tee said:

I asked a friend of mine, what color she remembers Chartreuse being and she remembers it as always being the yellow/green color, but she also remembers it as being part of a series of colors spanning yellow/green to red/pink/purple, which is very interesting. I myself remember it being the red/pink/purple color only and not the yellow/green that it is now(that looks and sounds way off) nor as part of a series of colors that are in different color groupings.

Natalie said:

I’m shocked that chartreuse is now suddenly a shade of green. I always thought it was a reddy/purple colour too. I have a vague recollection of thinking that chartreuse sounded french, like a red wine, so it made sense. And now it’s green? WEIRD! The mind boggles.

Rebecca said:

I most definitely remember chartreuse as being a dark purplish pink colour. My mum laughed at me when she realised that was what I thought. I was astonished to find it’s actually a yellow-green.

I remember it as being similar to the crayon marked “scarlet red” in this image: http://www.crayoncollecting.com/ccolor29_files/image035.jpg

Could it be something to do with them being in the same collection? The similarities of the words “chartreuse” and “cerise”?

jma said:

I remember a while back (maybe 12-15 years ago? I’m pushing 40 now) I was driving my car, describing something to my friend in the passenger seat and I used the word “chartreuse” . She was surprised and we ended up getting into a debate about the definition of chartreuse. I was shocked to learn that it was the color it is now (that yellow-green-aqua color)… and had to “eat-crow”, so to speak. BUT I had forgotten the color I previously thought it was, since I’ve known the “official” definition for so long. Upon reading your post, I realize the reddish color you describe is exactly the color I used to think it was.

Becca said:

I could have sworn that chartreuse was like a magenta colour. I remember watching (and yes, i know how this sounds) blues clues, and the guy went, red and purple make chaaaaarrtruuuuuuuuuse.

dm said:

I was more than positive chartreuse was a sort of purple color until a year or two ago.

Dani said:

Chartreuse was a pink color; I’ve ALWAYS associated chartreuse with pink (sort of a pinky-orange?), and never with anything green.

Jane said:

I have always been bothered by chartreuse not being a maroon color. It is NOT yellow-green, just no, that drives me crazy every time somebody mentions it! When I was younger, I would have sworn it was deep red/purple.

Rich said:

Had to make it all the way to the bottom [of the Major Memories comment thread] for someone to finally answer the Chartreuse question. And the whole time I was waiting for some one to say a pink/ashy purple. Glad someone else has a memory of that.  the Chartreuse question. And the whole time I was waiting for some one to say a pink/ashy purple. Glad someone else has a memory of that.

Lea said:

I could have SWORN that… chartreuse was a reddish-brown color. What the heck?!

In November 2014, Emily said:

Chartreuse is a wine red, I’ve had that argument many times.

Omer said:

– I know chartreuse was a pinkish color; I was watching a Modern Marvels episode on firefighting and they were talking about how some fire trucks are starting to be painted in chartreuse instead of red because of the increased visibility. I was curious what a chartreuse firetruck would look like so I went looking for pictures online, at which point I found out that chartreuse was basically neon yellow. I distinctly remember how weird this experience was for me, especially because I had never before heard someone refer to “neon yellow” as “chartreuse”. (I was watching this sometime in 2005, so I learned about chartreuse sometime before then)

Saffie Kaplan said:

I definitely thought chartreuse was some sort of purple. I remember asking my mom about it, which was the first time I heard of it as a yellow-green.

Rachel Lynn said:

When I think of Chartreuse, for whatever reason, the first colour that popped into my head was a blue-green colour, followed closely by thinking “wait, or maybe a pink colour.” I feel more strongly that its a blue-green, but yellow-green would never have been a guess, and the more k think about it the more i swear that it was blue-green crayon and i’m tempted to go find old crayons and look.

Morgan said:

Both my mom and I remember the color Chartreuse being a pinkish-purple color, almost like a neon purple. but most definitely not a yellow-green color.

Early in 2015, Hannah Carr said:

I swear to god chartreuse was like a dark red.

Chris said:

I also remember chartreuse as being a purple-ish color

Elise said:

Chartreuse is not yellow-green. It’s an orange fiery-red. I’m a synesthete with words and music. I had huge crayon boxes because I could not spell or write if words were not in the “correct” color (I couldn’t understand why other children didn’t get confused when, for instance, teachers wrote in colored chalk on the chalk board but wrote complete sentences in 1 color!). Luckily my gifted teacher researched my instances and realized it as synesthesia. She encouraged me to color code (which is the fist time I really understood math) and it allowed me to learn different languages at a young age (words which have the same meaning in another language represent in the same color – unlike music which seems to represent based on tonal sound).
All this to say that the word “aerospace” is a chartreuse word. In German the word “Raumfahrt” is also a chartreuse word. Both are a fiery orange-red.

Another Rachel said:

I used to think chartreuse was a dark red or burgundy color.

Cameron said:

Oh dear lord, i’m not alone. My whole life i thought Chartruese was a deep red or purple. I considered it my favorite color for a long time. It wasn’t until my sophmore year in highschool that i found out it was a light yellow or green. My best friend was ordering her dress and wanted my opinion. She said that she was getting it in Chartruse and i told her that was the one I thought would look nice, but the only picture she has was this gross pukey yellow and i said, “i’m glad you’re getting a different color than in the picture, because that is an awful color”. She then corrected me that the one pictured was the Chartrues one. I guess, all along the color i thought i loved was actually Mauve?

Donna said:

Yes chartreuse was a maroon-red color. It was only a couple years ago that I saw a crayon marked chartreuse and it was this awful green-yellow color, and I thought that Crayola must have made a mistake!

If you’d like to add a comment, you can use the numbers on the following color wheel to indicate the color you recall as chartreuse.

Color wheel

Color wheel courtesy of Sylveno at Wikimedia Commons.