Most mornings, after finishing my meditation, I move to the kitchen to have my morning mix of different cereals. A little bit of everything from various boxes, with raisins thrown in the mix.
On the fateful day of the 13th of July, my ritual hit a snag. No milk in the fridge. Had to open a new carton.
One of the great unwritten laws of universal happenstance, right next to the bread landing the buttered side on the floor, states that to satisfy the God of Small Accidents, you must spill some milk from a freshly opened carton. You know, try to be super careful pouring it, and then act surprised when the inevitable bloop sends a white fountain away from the cup of coffee, over the cereal bowl, past the porridge pot.
For the determined rationalist, there’s a way to trick fate if you hold the carton upside down, the beak up rather than down. The air bubble never forms, and milk can freely flow to your morning treat.
On the 13th, I used that trick, but I must’ve caught the Gods of Chaos on a bad day because the milk, undisturbed by any air bubbles, hit the middle of an abnormally large cornflake. Same effect as putting a spoon under an open tap.
The milk catastrophe looked so picturesque I photographed it. Second mistake of the day. You see, one must never make fun of the laws of universal happenstance.
Little did I know in the morning that this would be the last picture I took before some real-life milk would spill that day, and nothing would be the same again.
The events are too fresh, the wounds too deep to discuss on a blog. However, this manifestation of the power of photography is too striking not to share. A single image, a slice of life, meaning smuggled back in time, an innocent event telegraphing a seismic shift in how the rest of a lifetime will play out.
How much do we really understand of the work we produce?