Fatal error

How weird to write about errors and mistakes on January 1st.

The approved and consolidated ritual requires an accurate list of New Year’s resolutions, many of which won’t even be able to see the end of this month. But we like to have great expectations for the months to come, and we like to add a burden on our shoulders… Ready? Steady? Go! The run starts. We love dreaming, so why not dreaming big, really big, at least once a year?

No, New Year’s resolutions are not a fatal error.

Leaving aside any definition coming from computer science, a fatale error is every decision that is apparently wrong, even the most insignificant one. We choose a certain direction, and then we spend days, months, years wondering how it would have been if we had chosen a different one. Who knows? And would we have been really happier?

My fatal error is represented by this photograph above, and shot on film almost two years ago*. Wrong choice of exposure. A fatal error to which there’s no remedy. Even if it’s not correct,  there’s something in this photograph that fascinates me, and that brings me to an instant of perfection.

In a society that does not allow any flaws nor imperfections, ordinary lives, or even worse any failures, I want to celebrate mistakes. They are part of who we are now, they define us, just as the good choices do. We are fallible beings, but this does not make us any less interesting or fascinating. Allowing ourselves to make mistakes is a revolutionary act in its simplicity, and why not, triviality.

Mistakes make us humble, they remind us that there’s still a lot we don’t know. They give us a chance to evolve, learn, expand. How many wrong choices turned out to be good for us! And all this fuss about labeling everything, wrong-right, success.failure, ugly-beautiful. Do we really need such restrictive categories?

My wish for the new-born year is to learn to celebrate mistakes, and accept as part of who we are. May this year be revolutionary, without labels and pointless comparisons, without fear for the results, and most of all may it be full of joy and freedom.

Happy 2017!


*Shot with a Leicaflex SL, with a 50mm lens and using a black and white Kodak TriX 400 film.

Questo post è disponibile anche in: Italian

6 November 2016
4 January 2017