I cannot get over my obsession with cheap fruit. Ripe papaya, thirty bucks a kilo, bananas forty bucks a kilo, musk melon, thirty five, pineapple, again thirty. I buy a fruit a week, cut them up real nice, carry a fork with me wherever I go and eat them in the afternoon. Sometimes the papayas are slimy, the bananas are near black. But eat them still. I have always hated apples, and you can never trust oranges or grapes for how sour they might turn out to be, so I never prefer them. And pomegranate takes too long to peel and box and carry. So yes, I have my order of preference. With reason.
But why do I feel poor then? Is it because of my preference for cheap fruit? Is it because I am getting nowhere? Is it because I actually don't make as much money, as in cash. Or because no matter what I save, my savings are a pittance. Is it because I cannot make my money work hard? Is it because I have got no cushion. I am going to be middle class and work myself to exhaustion and a slow death, or a quick one preferably.
Is it because I don't have the clothes for it? Is it because my skin don't shine as much? Is it because I stutter when I need to speak of important things? Is it because I have zilch skills at impression management? Or because my growth in life is excruciatingly slow? Is it because I don't travel much? Is it because I end up staying home a lot? Is it because I don't pursue writing as much. Is it because of my fear of knowing that I ain't good enough on the surface or deep inside either.
Is it because of all this? That I find everything depressing. Endlessly so. And I distract myself with food and television. Or am I imagining my problems. Or am I just buying cheap fruit. I cannot remember which.
If only they would stop spamming me, I would be a better version of myself. The one who doesn't twist her thumb into the handle of her handbag slung from her shoulder while crossing the road. May be, if they stopped spamming me, my face would grow smaller and I wouldn't have this penchant for midnight smoking. If they stopped spamming me, I would get up earlier, sleep earlier, have longer days and on the contrary, longer nights as well. If they stopped spamming me 24 fucking 7, I would not have to distract myself constantly from what's important to me with the utter nonsense that consumes all my time. If only they stopped sending me texts about Ladies' Night offers and about cash back of three hundred bucks, or if I needed a motherfucking credit card, I would be less angry all the time. If they left me alone, if they just left me alone and kept that useless secret of how many reward points I had (couldn't care any less), or what stocks I should pick, or till when their mega sale is extended to, or how much discount they offer (no matter what I do, I am poor, poverty is my religion). If only I could find a way to unsubscribe and close the chapter. I send texts and mails and missed calls and never stop unsubscribing, yet they keep spamming me from newer avenues. They are tireless and I am dead. In the long run. In the short run, I am so exhausted and waiting for any leeway to allow me to become a better, less fucked up as this version of myself. I am.
If they just let a human being speak to me every time I called the customer care, I would be a far better person than I so pretend to be. If I didn't have to select the motherfucking language every time, each and every time and dial 1 and then 4 and then 7 and then 0 again and then 9 and then # to repeat the options because I was distracted and had passed into a coma by just dialing and then * to go back to previous menu, because there is nothing here. This menu is just as empty and pointless as my current life. And then call back again and again and then get lost in loops and hoops waiting to speak to a human being who could ask how they would help me today, yes that. But nobody ever. And once they do, by that fraction of chance in the cosmos, they fucking hangup before I have even begun asking what I need to know. You understand my misery. I doubt you would. My call is not important to you, so don't you tell me that again. They would sincerely wait for me to tweet them some shit and they would listen. Sometimes, not even then, that audacity. I am largely inconsequential woman, I get that, large and inconsequential, but I have earned the right to speak to a human being. Dontcha fuckin hang up on me, ever.
I just can't. Just can't.
in the dark, I see its sparks
but can't figure out what
or where it be
I'm breaking, slowly
Flake after flake
In chunks, may be
Into a grey pile of dust, beside me
from the past
and allowing them to get to me
this has been, my darling
what unthrottled waste
of my spirit, this all is proving to be
She sat on the next table. Appeared to be in mid thirties. Her skin was dry, almost grainy. I imagined. I would see her, why not. If we met on Tinder, on whatever. She's the ripe age for a woman to be. She must be married though, I deduced from the bits of her conversation with her friend which I overheard.
Both their bags were placed on the table. At the exact center of the table was an ash tray. I stole glimpses. At them. Her friend was quietly the prettier of them both. And better dressed, probably. But this woman, whose only half face I could see, looked like the most engrossed human. She was perhaps reading something on her phone. From the way her eyes moved, I surmised she wasn't whiling away time on some social media. She was reading a story, definitely. From the waves of lust arising in her eyes, I imagined it was an erotic story.
So I was sitting next to a woman in a grey sweater who must have been heaving up and down with libido, in a cafe by a lake whose dark waters had recently become my muse. If her friend went to the ladies room, I would get a better view of her. Her face. Half wavy half straight hair, dusky complexion, mildly erased kohl, remains of a tired Friday on her face, and everything else.
May be I would also walk up to her and ask her name. I think she's called Toshi. No I haven't overheard that. But she looks like it.
Now she's smoking. Twirls of smoke rapidly leaving her mouth. Oh she's praising the coffee. It's the best coffee she's had in weeks. With the backdrop of the lake and the music that's playing, she looks semi ethereal.
Like she's dissolving into time and space, slowly. Merging with the dark waters of the lake behind her. In a few hours, her friend would be found sitting there alone.