Probability defied.

Cover Image

I suppose it started as I walked along Halsted in Greektown. It was light out, bright I think, and I was in my usual state of mind for the moment, which was to be completely within the eternal confines of my own mind. It descended, casually falling down; and it met me, not on purpose, by either of us. I was enamored, captive, subverted by whatever this meeting was. I had a shift in consciousness, the confines rearranged. My eyes widened as a layer of thinking was being peeled from them, and then burning from the pungent freshness. The old film discarded. All I could think was how did it get here? And not of all the different ways it could have, but just of its natural procession. And how did we get here? There were no choices made, none could be. And by that logic, where was it going? I was momentarily taken out of the picture and allowed to see through the lens. It was absolutely wonderful. (I have been so lucky enough to feel a handful of them, these moments that change the connections in your mind. I’m not talking about acts of life either, say someone taken from you or something introduced to you; none of the moments in which you are acted on by life. I’m talking about the moments where the frame you were looking through changes to a virgin one, so entirely pure and raw.) But that’s not the point. The point is that it got me thinking. Thinking about paths crossing, but not connecting, and how grand they are. On a number line spanning to infinity and in infinitely many directions, a point is only made by a very select precious set. A path is made by the most stripped down abstract function. And for two of these to meet is a phenomenon of obscured proportion.


We live where we are trained to think that this event is a common thing, that it is status quo, that to not expect it is paltry and naïve. That “missed connections” are real. Suppose you want to go talk to someone but you have to build your esteem first to do so. But the time passes and you don’t. You think about that opportunity that has passed and you feel this sense of sadness of what could have been. But the thing is, it wasn’t supposed to happen if it didn’t. I am in no way saying that you should never try for anything and act like a released leaf in the wind. What I am saying is that you only have control over what you’re supposed to control, when you are supposed to control it, and regret is a dirty word invented by people who only traverse life facing backwards. Don’t stop yourself, or maybe do stop yourself, who knows what you should do, you’ll only know while it’s happening. And if it weren’t happening, you wouldn’t know it anyway.


Here’s what I see:

 A frame split in two. Focused on two different people. But it doesn’t have to be people, it could be any two separate entities: a person and crack in the sidewalk, a bee and a flower, a rock and a raindrop, a carbon atom and a nitrogen atom, whatever, but easily I see two people. The frame shows images, scenes of their lifeline; it could start before they existed even. Each side showing the development of their course. Maybe they have similar circumstances or opposing one, but more likely unrelated. At times I may block out one side and focus in on the other for a while if I choose. And then I let them lead me here: Six corners, Wicker Park, a sunny afternoon during the busy rush home. The backgrounds on each side of the frame start to resemble each other, I begin to realize their physical proximity to each other. Something passes by one person moments before it passes the other: maybe a person on a bike, an insect, or a breeze. They get closer; the division in the frame begins to become ambiguous. Just South of North Avenue, on Damen in front of Forno, the divide is lost. They are a stride away from each other; a car passes by, urgently and swiftly blocking my view of them, and then I see them again. They are a stride past each other.  My frame of view stays in place, and they each leave the frame at their intended time.

I find it beautiful and wondrous. Probability defied. 

Created: Jul 01, 2012


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