Her swiveling arm deposits a sock on the floor.

Distance covered: Approx. 6ft.
Accuracy: Poor. She missed my face.

She sits on the bed with her legs crossed in front of her, the smooth skin from her knees downards shining pink in the light of the glowing tube in front of her, from behind me. Her toes, nails each painted a different colour, point towards me; the big toe of her left foot flicks the toe next to it repeatedly.

The sock on the floor is blue. I like blue. I always have. The nail of the little toe on her left foot is painted blue. The jeans I hold in my hand are blue. My sneakers are blue. That makes it three blue things that I've thought of. Four, if you include my mood. But then I've only just thought of it.

Her big toe keeps flicking, up and down. Again. And again. And again. And again; beautiful in its abruptness and repititiveness.

"So you liked the socks, didn't you?"

I look up from the toes, my eyes travelling along her legs with her arms across them, to her glowing face, that rests just above her knee caps.

When in doubt, fib.

Fib. Fib. Fib. What should I say? What should I say? Should I fib? Should I flee? I can't lie.

Her cold blue eyes cloak the flames of a thousand burning embers. Her lips curl upwards like a tight chicane that I can't travese without slipping. Why is one so melodramatic when one is tense? I gotta get away. God, I gotta get away.

Should I end it?

"You know," I say quietly, sternly, "as well as I do, that they were a prop. The socks were a prop."

"A prop?"

"A prop."

I can tell from her face that she's thinking; "The Unexpected Statement That Launched A Million Moments of Self-Introspection" would be the headline in her personal newspaper, tomorrow. This is my chance to flee.

"For what?"

Not quite.

"For me. For anyone. For everyone."

"They're not."

"What about your toenails?" I point towards them.

"That's me. I do them differently because that's what I do. I don't do things like everyone else."

"Do people notice them?"

"Yes. So?"

"They're a prop."

There ain't no easy way out

She looks away at the wall, thinking. About to sob. No, please. Please don't sob. I think I see a tear forming, but I'm wrong. She looks back towards me with renewed fierceness, her hands squeezing her kneecaps tightly.

"So everything about me is a prop?"

"What do you think?" In all honesty, I want to tell her that I didn't mean that. I can't lie and say yes, but I can't tell her no either.

"My toenails," she says, glancing at them, and raising them upwards, "are a prop. My socks are a prop. My clothes, probably are a prop. So is my hairstyle. And my coloured hair."

She pauses and looks right through me.

"What about you, then?"

"What do you mean?"

"Wasn't I a prop for you?"

Like I said - there ain't no easy way out.


(Wrote this a couple of months ago. T'was experimental and I intended to explore the style further. Didn't think it possible, but my propensity to write - even blog- has waned further. Reading, however, is on the up, largely forced by the impending literature exams. I'm sure this will spill over into writing. Soon. Oh and, I'd appreciate some comments, even if they're not complimentary.)

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6 Comments:
Blogger Jabberwock said...

I think you should consider expanding it a bit, there's a lot of promise here. Forget about the Kunzru story now and take it down a different track.

April 04, 2006 9:58 PM  
Blogger Sue said...

Needs work. Polishing is what I mean. Maybe expansion will help too.

April 04, 2006 11:59 PM  
Blogger mungojerrie said...

you put it up!

and even on second read, its not putting off. i agree. you should work on this re. and meanwhile, watch dancer in the dark.

April 05, 2006 2:31 AM  
Blogger Nikhil Pahwa said...

Jai and Shreya: Thanks. I tend to go with the flow while writing. I do this for fun, yes? :D

Will try to get the flow back one of these days...right now trying hard not to not study.

Sue: Thanks. I'm just trying to not do the ordinary thing with this. Will rework it and make it more palpable.

April 05, 2006 8:29 AM  
Anonymous tarun said...

You should go away to some really rustic place in the northeast or one south of delhi with a friend and just backpack across the region for a while and you'll feel like your home is your own mind. And there won't be crap to distract you nd indulge you in things not worth living for. You'll be free to write more... and more... and summore...

Maybe you can go the Salman Rushdie way (literary wise) and the JK Rowling way ($$ wise)...

We're all stuck. aren't we? Cages can both protect and imprison.

"How much can you possibly know about yourself if you've never been in a fight? I don't want to die without any scars." - Tyler Durden, FC

"slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don't need. We're the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our Great War's a spiritual war... our Great Depression is our lives. We've all been raised on television to believe that one day we'd all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won't. And we're slowly learning that fact. And we're very, very pissed off."

April 05, 2006 12:25 PM  
Blogger mayank said...

is it the new writing style or only i didn't get it. anyway keep writing

April 12, 2006 11:43 AM  

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