Monday, August 16, 2010

The Most Amazing Photo Of A Toilet

정말 놀랍고 기막힌 사진 (과장 아님)

This is astonishing! There are many names that could fit this phenomenon: coincidence; synchronicity; serendipity; acausal connecting principle; even a glitch in The Matrix -- call it what you will, but it's proof that there truly is order everywhere (to what purpose I cannot imagine -- call it Random Order, perhaps)!

I took the following photos back in 2008, on my vacation trip to Seoul, South Korea. Now, Seoul is located in mountainous terrain (well, most of Korea is). There are hills and mountains within and surrounding the city, and the most prominent of these is Namsan, 'South Mountain'.

On Namsan there is a landmark structure called Seoul Tower, in a lovely wooded park.

Like any good tourist I went to check it out (it's kind of strange to call myself a tourist in the city I was born in), and up on the observation deck I saw a sign stating that the restroom there is the highest lavatory in the city -- so of course I had to take a few photos.

I have to say, it was beautiful -- if you can call a toilet beautiful -- it actually looked like a piece of environmental sculpture or something. Anyway, I took my shots, burned them to a disc and pretty much forgot about them.

So after nearly 2 years, I open up the file to check out the photos, and imagine my amazement when I noticed this:

Check it out -- in each of the three fully imaged windows, just barely visible in the distant sky, there is an advertising banner being towed by an airplane, in the same quadrant of each window (the leftmost one looks like a two-in-one(?)).

What are the odds? The angle and the distance between the tower and the planes, the altitude, speed, and timing of the planes, the relative positions and distances between them, the placement of the windows and the intervals between them, even the timing of my visit -- all the factors that would have to come together (or in physics lingo, all the world-lines that would have to converge) in order to present this particular image just as I walked in and took this shot -- you can call me weird, but man, I'm almost shaking.

Doubters can say in their deflating fashion that the planes were simply following a schedule that happened to have them flying together in that fashion; sure, that's factually true, but saying that doesn't really mean anything beyond that it's a strange coincidence, which is the point. I think it's a pretty safe bet that nobody else in Seoul ever noticed those planes together like that through those windows -- nor probably ever again.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Sam 성민오빠 for posting these awesome photos. I would say 경이롭다 in Korean. It is great to have this opportunity to re-appreciate the beauty of Korea through your artistic gaze. Your cousin in London