“Do you know what you want from your life?”
“Money. Fame. Name. This. That…eh?”
“No, I can live without money; what’s more important is ‘name’, the identity.”
“And how do you define an identity?”
She is mute.
I continue. “I guess it’s a kind of recognition, something that people identify you with.”
“A frame across the real you. Isn’t that an identity?”
“yeah…may be.” She stuttered after a long. Thinking takes the better of you. And renders you abstract in no time.
“So, which frame you want?”
“Look, it doesn’t matter which frame I am caged into, as long as I love doing what I am doing, and I do it in the best possible way.”
A stare. She makes me cold all through, with just one stare, just one. And I go numb, voiceless, motionless, clueless.
Questioning life. That’s what appeals me most these days. Different. That’s what I want to be. Iconoclast. That’s what I want to be called.
And I want her to understand how hard I am trying, how focused I am. I want her to see how am I writhing inside – how am I controlling my energies that threaten to rip open me every time I try concentrating them upon something – how I am living in truce with myself, the dangerous war just a moment ahead. I want her to know that I am not weak.
Life’s plans, its expectations never meet the expense life demands.
And you die meeting ends.
And you just harp over the identity, all your life, the recognition you want to earn.
Dreams never meet lives.
“What do you want from your life, Animesh?” The barrel is now towards me.
“Nothing…” I choke, grope for definitions that she had denied, for words lost in dictionaries, in brains of men, and with a little effort, and a poignant stoke, “…I only want to kill the anonymity that has fogged me.”
Once upon a time, when I was still a kid, life was easy to me. Little did I ask of life, little did it charge me.
Now, things are different.
I want a hell lot of things. And I have nothing for mortgage. How will I do it? What would I put for security? Luck or toil?
I don’t understand. She doesn’t understand. And life goes on, time passes through.
“I want to become a writer. Few months back, I had started writing a novel, I worked upon the synopsis, prepared the blue print, wrote some hundred pages. Few publishers were interested too…but I couldn’t finish. I abandoned it in middle.”
She gaped at me; perhaps, thinking how weak I was, and that’s not true, in letting go of things, of my own decisions, own convictions and…my own future.
Doesn’t life do same to you? You never call life weak. Life simply loses the belief in you. I lost my belief in my book. And I quit.
‘Girls want men who are focused, passionate.’ DP‘s famous sermon, ‘so, if you are not, pretend to be one.’
Pretensions…ah! To pretend, you need to know the difference between the ‘original’ and the ‘fake’. You need to know yourself. Do I know myself?
I steer the topic into a totally different territory. “You are very normal. Everyone I see is abnormal these days, trying to pretend to be someone different than oneself. Totally different! They would ride a roller coaster just to prove that they are not scared. They would commit their love only to prove…something, I don’t know what, why, but they do it…Tell me, can you really prove that you are in love? That you understand someone?”
Silence. It is now perpetual between us. I think she is immersed into my words; she thinks…I am not sure…perhaps…how abstract, or stupid I am. Either way things are set and done. And no words are needed.
“…and I appreciate the fact that you are normal. The best thing anyone can have.”
And I look at her, chuckling.