February 02, 2004


"So, you've known it all this while?" She asked in a surprised tone.

"Yes, I have. You thought I did not?" I replied.

"Yeah," came the 'damn-what-do-I-say-now' response.

It is a graphic description of how much you can talk about an issue, one which everyone pretends to be unaware of, and still not talk about it at all.

Did it smart? Yes and no. No to the degree and yes to the sensation. It is something like getting bruised. Each subsequent trip to the doctor, after the first, is always a degree lesser in intensity in the suffering it causes. But I am doing rather well, taking the blows in my stride and moving on, philosophising, rationalising and commenting here in a 'yes-baby-I-know-it-all' manner, in the hope that the frequent non-seperation from the subject matter would degrade with time and with some luck, erase itself from my memory.

Then there are excuses. And then there are reasons and arguments. Like two old friends at a common acquaintances's memorial service, we would recount past instances, tally the notes, cry a lot, laugh a bit and agree that it was a good chap and it was a good time. Then we would go back to our respective lives, to brood, to rejoice, to bring up kids, buy a house, buy a car, pay back loans and tell ourselves facts that have been written before, a million times, about time and its merciless progress and then move on to yet another compartment of our worldly worries.

It is in this background that I find myself more and more attracted to the status of being incommunicado. The words here only express a minute portion of the 'broken-record' feeling. Change a few faces, a name or two and the story remains the same. I can't ignore for much longer the cries of the salesman within me, loudly advertising the latest exchange offer to get rid of the old and get something new. But I do not want anything new, I just want to keep quiet, not say anything at all and demonstrate to myself how life goes on regardless.

But the thing I want to least look at is my sense of judgement and value. It has already had a very checkered history and to be very honest, is becoming quite a liability. A liability that I cannot quite get rid of. But what do I replace it with? To live without feeling is an oxymoron and quite a stupid concept. After all, it is a matter of proportion, there must be a right one for me too. A concept not very unlike the existence of life elsewhere in the universe. We do not quite know where it is, but we sure do hope and spend a mammoth amount of energy and time on it, while ordinary life here pass us by, unnoticed.