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My Incoherent World

Unintelligibility is where I start

The Martian Roomate

Back in 2011 when I was living in Bangalore I shared a room with an old school mate of mine. He was quite a normal fellow except for a few peculiar “Alien” traits & behaviors.

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Visually he would stand out owing to unnaturally pale skin (which I suspect is his human suit) and an exceptionally large head (this was confirmed when he went to buy a helmet, they dint have a size or shape that fit him). This oversized head would bob uncontrollably from side to side during his walks (fast paced & accurately placed strides) which ironically appeared as a poor imitation of the natural homosapien walk. Another little quirk was his obsession with his keys (they probably opened doors to an intergalactic spaceway or just dirty alien underwear) and had them chained to his body at all times; although practical, it made him sound like an old bicycle when he ran or jogged up some stairs.

Then there are the many bizarre morning rituals which I would awaken to, the first being the image of a silent and still being; staring at tiny dot on a mirror, kneeling like the Japanese “Seiza” sitting position on a cushion. His palms resting on his thighs and eyes staring intently  at the dot with utmost concentration but with a calm expression on his face (like he was taking the most relaxing dump of his life). I imagine he was telepathically communicating through the reflective portal which bridges vast planetary distances, but we both acted as if it was a meditation exercise.

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The rituals progressed into much stranger ones, this second one was a bit disturbing (mentally) for me because of the visuals and noises involved. There lay a gigantic ritualistic bottle beside the bed which would be filled with water and then I would simply gape open-mouthed as he chugged it all down like an ogre downing some magical potion.  He would then turn his spell cast, satisfied face; eyeballs swimming randomly independent of each other in watery pools and calmly walk over to the bathroom and regurgitate it all. The whole thing was unsettling but then he would just wash his face and instantly give off an expression which can only be interpreted as “DAILY INTERNAL WASHING OF HUMAN SUIT: CHECK “.

He always had a practical way of looking at things, if you wanted an emotionless and completely mechanical solution to any problem or situation; all you had to do was feed him the variables and he would output the most pragmatic fix for them. Things were always black and white for him and anything grey that did not compute was quickly and promptly pointed out and questioned with utmost curiosity.

He walked, talked and socially behaved like his interface badly needed an update and upgrade of human emotions, but one thing which I will never forget is his stupidly happy grin and baby laugh. Even the smallest and silliest jokes (fart jokes and butt jokes included) would cause him to erupt into uncontrollable giggles and every time he would see a familiar face a happy-go-lucky grin would burst on to an otherwise pale and placid face.

It just goes to show that fart jokes and butt jokes transcend planetary boundaries and a happy familiar face is always welcome. I never thought I would miss those weird antics of his, but here I am feeling nostalgic while writing about the Martian.

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Quicksand – Into the Darkness

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I left work that Friday unenthusiastic and miserable, the situation at work was “complicated” as is the relationship with most people and their work places. I realized I needed company, someone to talk, laugh and skip the cold stony thoughts away into a deep pond somewhere;but I don’t have anyone.

Well, its not entirely true; I do have someone but how many times would I meet up, talk or socialize in a week. I feel awkward forcing myself or another person to be in my company repeatedly. People have plans for the weekend with their friends, and for as long as I can remember I was never part of any such group.

I wonder why I don’t have many friends, I start to think maybe I am a horrible person and people secretly hate me (I don’t think I am, but I may be biased). My best friends are a couple of assholes whom I love dearly, but work-life have made it geographically and monetarily hard for me to meet them often; even if I did meet em, they would probably just tell me to grow a pair and man up.

But how long will I be able to keep up this charade, the weight of living alone, coming home to an empty room; whenever I meet up with a friend, its like a drug that keeps me alive, temporarily shielding me from this endless pointless loop of emptiness and I want to go back to that person just to feel that brief relief from this nightmare.

I realize this cannot continue forever, everyone has to leave at some point and I cannot expect them to be there for me. I am unable to be happy alone, One of my friends told me the secret to being happy when you are alone is to be “comfortable” with your own “self”.
How can I tell him that is the very thing I fear.

My mind corrupts further, putrefying any remaining good thought; bringing up any and every memory, infecting it, killing me softly while my screams go unheard; I sink slowly into the darkness.

I am unable to escape this quick sand, every time I feel a rope has been thrown by someone they don’t always stick around to pull me out completely, life comes and calls them away because everyone has their own little worlds that they live in.

 

 

THE FLOATING GHOST DOT

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My day in office began as usual with the ceremonial switching ON of the computer followed by the customary droopy eyed meditation session with the monitor. Bappi, our office chai wala had brought the morning tea earlier and just as the magic potion began to work its enlivening effects, I started noticing something quite otherworldly.

Everywhere I looked, I saw what can only described as a “floating ghost dot”. He was swimming around without a care in the world, in what seemed like the astral fluid of an invisible dimension. He would rise, fall and often disappear for a brief moment only to pop out suddenly from one of corners. I never managed to look at him directly and any effort made would result in him immediately torpedoing away into a random corner. I guess he must be shy or conscious of his appearance; maybe he doesn’t know that he is a floating ghostly dot.

I started getting used to his presence as the day progressed and I often felt myself break into a smile when he came to grab my attention, whizzing into my vision as if he was shot out of a phantasmal cannon somewhere close. He seemed like a footloose, cheerful wraith-like spectre, who enjoyed grabbing the attention of people.

As the afternoon work piled and my progress dragged, irritation set in and his constant floating antics were becoming an eyesore. I went to the toilet and decided to wash my eyes; I came back to my desk and resumed my work. It took me while to notice that there were no more sudden popping up, whizzing or erratic movements of the “floating ghostly dot”; he was gone, vanished without a trace. I wondered where he might have flown off to; maybe he was just bored of me or maybe he had better things to do. I sat there regretting not having named the litter guy, for I wanted to call him back to my world one more time.

PS: These are actually called “floaters” and are generally harmless and go away, if they persist and you have problems, then they may indicate some underlying optical condition. Please consult a doctor, you can read more about them here.

THE NECROMANCER CYBORG

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My days in office are spent observing the most unremarkable run-of-the-mill activities because exciting is not a word that is often used to describe the daily atmosphere here. You might think you have a idea of how mundane & boring it is , but the room which I call my office is actually a storage room where old unwanted office equipment come to die; an electronic graveyard if you will. So yeah! its that boring!!

It’s quiet here in my “office” for the most part, but today the IT repair guy came into my room with a determined look on his face. He wore one of those skinny tight fit jeans which did not help his appearance one bit, as his johnny bravo feet were supporting a giant wrecking ball of a stomach that hung from his waist wobbling up and down with each lumbering step. He walked over, scratched his head and started rummaging through the graveyard like a necromancer, ripping out organs, intestines and limbs from dead machines and then just flinging them into a corner if it did not seem to meet his shady requirements.

He took his own sweet time and slowly the parts started accumulating on his body whilst he rummaged for more; by the time he was done he looked like a retro homemade cyborg with power cables twisted around his arms, a motherboard integrated carefully on his shapely belly and some old white keyboards under his arms. He  grinned with the satisfaction of finding what he came for and scurried off with a mad twinkle in his eyes like that of a mad scientist going to create his Frankenstein.

 THE CURATOR FLY

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The tea cup sat on a white wooden table with black borders. It was a quaint little tea cup with a white base and a sandal colored ribbon which stretched between two thin golden lines all around the cup. A fly was getting busy on the surface; strangely it seemed to focus most of its attention on the outside of the cup rather than the inside where the sweet stuff lay. I was engrossed in observing this little master hopping around the outside of the cup, studying the lines, the curvature, the colors and the details of it all; occasionally diving in to get a taste of the remnant tea and smacking his little fly legs together in satisfaction.

It kept buzzing and exploring the tea cup like an expert art curator examining every inch of a sculpture seemingly hell bent on deciding whether to deem it the next masterpiece or just another piece of garbage that was created in the kitchen. He would get excited for a moment and I would imagine that he had come to a conclusion but then he would prop his neck at an angle, shake his head almost as if disagreeing with his own decision and continue his meticulous study.

Then just as I thought he had arrived at a decision, my office door burst open without warning and Bappi my chai wala came with short quick strides, swiftly snatching away the tea cup to be cleaned and put away so it can used later for the afternoon tea. I was alone again in my room, the fly had disappeared and I was left wondering what his big decision was.

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