"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