Look around you, in your office, or on your bus, or in the tube train you’re on, hot and humid. Perhaps you are on your gap year, with foreign sand in your shoes (I hope you are the latter).
Everyone around you sprung from two other people, this you know, but think for a moment how those people were accidental people. Yes, some children were planned, but nearly everyone around you was an accident, an accidental conception during a pleasurable (one should hope) moment of two other probable accidental people enjoying each other’s company or love. Even planned children are the produce of accidents within accidents, from the miscarriage to the chemical weather that saw you become a girl instead of a boy, or vice versa, or both. The entire human race is a cacophonous, beautiful mess of accidents created by accidents created by accidents.
From the one you call mum, mam, maman, mutti or mom, through to him or her, sat right there (look up), the words we use for colours and the way the trees are in the park, the accidents are all around. Each accident a collection of timings, locations, numbers and letters. Missed trains. Caught trains. Phone calls. Someone using a word that struck a chord with someone who loved the sound of that word. The left or right turn that day. Once you accept the nature of humanity and society, you begin to realise how everything around you has been so delicately delivered to you. Most things around you have rolled to us like marbles across a floor, knocking into each other and changing each other’s path and speed.
Overlay onto this mesh of moments all of the discoveries, combinations of ideas, mixtures of accidents and accident’s accidents, their outputs, and how those moments are unlikely to ever occur again. You wonder how lucky you are to be here at all, your childhood memories, or songs you knew before what songs were, or things that happened, people who were there, what filled your brain that day. You are usually tempted by magic at this point; words like fate or determinism. Do not falter. Take a moment to marvel at the blunt, brilliant accident of how the human brain named itself, and how the world turns on an axis forged by the biggest accident of all.
There is nothing to say other than 1) It’s fucking brilliant, 2) Do things, make things, break things, mix things. Make accidents happen, good ones wherever possible, and embrace the homogeneity, heterogeneity, evolution, development, recurrence, coincidence, serendipity and ingenuity of everything around you. By embracing these things you will steer your accidents and moments as best you can to moments of pleasure and benefit. These are your things, your times and they, and their construct, are all too precious and amazing to write off as fate. It is not fate. It is not fate that led you to my heart, or you to another’s heart, or your eyes to these words, or your eyes to another’s eyes. It is all a massive accident, a cosmic car crash that we all walked away from together, exhilarated. And it is fucking brilliant.