posted on Jun, 7 2004 @ 10:02 PM
You're experiencing one of the effects of the limbic system in your brain.
Your eyes actually take in much more information than you can consciously process at once, and "limbic" thought is an evolved mecanism that helps
you to "spot" the things that are important to your for survival that you might not otherwise have consciously considered.
In you case, you've noticed clock a couple of times and it read the same time. You probably thought "that's a coincidence" and will have
unknowingly filed it away somewhere as a "relevant" memory or idea.
Then the limbic system kicks in. the next time you're eyes pass a clock, even if you're not thinking about it, subconsciously you still read the
time. This can happen hundreds of times a day. There's just under 2% chance each time that the clock WILL be at 16 minutes past the hour, and if this
is the case, the limbic system "flags" your conciousness and you notice it!
It's the same reason you always notice lots of other cars just like yours when you buy model. You "saw" similar cars before, but didn't "notice"
I can't find anything on the web that describes this particularly well, but there's some other background stuff on the brian here.