11 September 2006

Can life be otherwise?

-- a post-mortem examination of a missed life


"Can life be otherwise?"
Have you ever asked yourself this question?

Oh, this is a question for the loser!
Yes, yes, you are right, this is a question for the loser.
And yet aren't we losers at a certain point of our life?

Do you really believe that you are in perfect mastery of your life?
Isn't our life consisted of millions of choices and probability?
....
chance encounter, chance success, chance failure, accidental variations...

cross roads, turn left, turn right, upstairs, downstairs...
"to be or not to be?"
....

Then, one day we wonder how life would be if we bought the film tickets for 7:30pm instead of 9:45pm? if we went to KFC instead of McDonald's? if we telephoned B first instead of A? if we sat at row H instead of K? if we cooked rice instead of spaghettis? If we did go to Prague? if we did ask that question? if we didn't rise our hand in the lecture hall? if we did get up that evening? if we didn't sing that song?
...

Do you know that history can be otherwise?

Do you know why Nagasaki was chosen as the target after Hiroshima? Do you know that originally Kokura was the first target to be bombed? On 9 August 1945, three aircrafts took the mission to drop the bomb "Fat Man". Weather was reported clear in Kokura. However, one aircraft mysteriously missed its route, when they reached Kokura 30 mins later than planned, a 7/10 cloud had already covered the city, so they flew to Nagasaki.

Do you know Nagasaki might not be bombed? Again, mysteriously an oil reserve tank of a second aircraft had failed before take-off, it might have to divert to Okinawa due to insufficient fuel to reach Iwo Jima. So, the initial plan was that if Nagasaki was obscured on their arrival they would carry the bomb to Okinawa and dispose of it in the ocean.

At 11:00 am, the three aircrafts arrived Nagasaki and the weather was obscure. At 11:01, a last minute break in the clouds over Nagasaki allowed the bombardier to sight the target. The "Fat Man" was dropped over the city and 43 seconds later, the sky was obscured again and 70,000 Nagasakians were killed instantly.

What's the calculation? What's the probability here?


Do you know that cities can be otherwise?


There is this comic book called Manhattan Guardian which is set in a Manhattan not chosen, the other Manhattan rebuilt with architectural projects not realised : Antonio Gaudi's New York Hotel, Hans Hollein's Rolls-Royce Building, Frank Lloyd Wright's Ellis Island Key. Can Manhattan in fact be the other Manhattan?

Have you ever thought about this, that the twin towers could have not be there on 11 September 2001?

Yet, in our life... how many paths not taken? how many trains missed? how many love abandoned? how many words misinterpreted? how many people misunderstood?

Photo courtesy: http://en.wikipedia.org

13 comments:

siu ming said...

I think it'll be very interesting to living with you. your brain is always full of thought. I know you more after talking to you, and after reading your articles. Last night, I read a few articles in your blog, really good! collect all and publish in future! your future half will be a very lucky man, but I'm now wondering that my monitor may not be suitable to you (the eyeball is too small/ narrow to you ; )

Siu Ming

dreamhunter said...

Thanks a lot. Just that we were too busy all of us that we didn't have time to talk in HK.

I don't know if it's interesting to live with me or not. But my brother used to complain to my noise: practice seesion of my piano scale, violin out of tune, telephone calls, screams at seeing a lizard, never-waking up alarms in the morning... and of course, occupying the bathroom for too longtime...

Teresa said...

Do you know the film "Sliding Door"? and there is another old song by Danny Chan "地下鐵遇著她...",then he tried to meet the same girl again every morning but in vain... 緣份,C'est la vie!!

Sometimes, i believe that whatever decision we made, we are going to regret for the the other choice anyway, no matter we choose A or B today...

Hey, my brother hates me when I play the boring scale too!!

dreamhunter said...

Oh, yeap, i knew it. But not very clear la... Meg Ryan?

walker said...

Ting, I'm looking for this comic book "Manhattan Guardian"... but couldn't find on Amazon. Pls provide full title/author/publisher details. Great thanks!

dreamhunter said...

Hi Walker,

The Manhattan Guardian by Cameron Stewart

Publisher DC Comics
First appearance The Manhattan Guardian #1
(May, 2005)
Created by Grant Morrison

Characteristics
Alter ego Jake Jordan
Affiliations Seven Soldiers of Victory, Newsboy Legion
Abilities None. However, Jake Jordan is a former police officer, physically fit, and a skilled fighter.

You can also go to the unofficial website:

http://www.dcuguide.com/who.php?name=manhattanguardian

or

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manhattan_Guardian

Good luck!

Walker said...

Thanks for the very comprehensive info. I read from Wiki too.

Actually, what I want to know is - from which issue did you get the Manhattan sketches in you post? ... I would like to show my friend an "otherwise" Manhattan. I'm looking for the issue details for back issue purchase. Thanks one more time if you have any idea.

dreamhunter said...

Hi Walker,

The image is from the first issue of the comics. I wrote an article for a Chinese magazine introducing the comics in Sept 05 when the it was just about to publish. I don't know where to get the back issues. You are in the States?

Walker said...

Great thanks, Hunter. I'll ask my friend in the States to try buying a back issue. BTW, what is that Chi magazine - a HK one, or a China one?

p.s. it's mid-autumn tomorrow.

dreamhunter said...

Oh, so in fact you are hongkonger then? I thought you were american or ....

It not possible for you to get the Chi magazine now, but if you read chinese, you can go to my blog, check out the October 2005 achieve, and you will find the article there.

Just one question, do I know you in person?

dreamhunter said...

Hi walker,

maybe you can try the following website.

http://www.splashpageart.com/GalleryRoom.asp?GSub=292

http://www.comicreaders.com/modules.php?name=News&file=print&sid=1401

Walker said...

how should I thank thee ...?

p.s. I share your words -「一個人的想法可以影響深遠,而我們的世界就在這種不知不覺中被許多人影響著、操控著。」... & HK is definitely not a place for dream hunting!

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