There has always been one constant in my life, that one thing that defined me, that which handed over to me the right to look down upon on other fellow beings, that which made me feel like a prodigy, the very fact that I was always always always sure : of anything and everything.
Which ice cream? Vanilla; all my life.
Would it rain tomorrow? Not a drop will touch your head; no cloud droppings at least.
Which shirt? White. Cotton. With one breast pocket.
Suit or denim? Denim; Faded and distressed.
Which tie? If you really insist, it would be striped.
Dinner tomorrow night? No. I don’t eat out for dinners as a rule.
Lunch then? Always alright.
Venice or Vegas? Cairo.
And then it all changed one day.
For the first time, I understood what those words from the dictionary, ‘indecisive’, ‘indeterminate’, ‘nonplussed’, etc, really meant at heart and not just in ink and paper. After dragging my pen across the divorce papers, I suddenly wasn’t sure anymore. Was it ok to go for lunch or would that be inappropriately apathetic and apathetically inappropriate? Was it ok to go home or would that be uncomfortably depressing and depressingly uncomfortable? Was it ok to go back to office or would that be numbingly uncouth and uncouthly numb. I felt like a feather floating through the air and there was nowhere to settle down on.
Not knowing where to go, my steering wheel steered me down to Millennium Park; not knowing what to do, my feet walked me down to the ‘Cloud Gate’; and not knowing what to think about, my eyes stared at the mobile beings around. There were people everywhere, and the marmalade of their constant and comfortably unclear chatter was soothing like a barrier cream on freshly scraped skin. They were busy posing in amusing ways and capturing with their camera how the Cloud Gate’s mirrored surface distorted their image.
Just then, my eyes fell on someone walking towards me. Do I know him? I rattled my brain. He was dressed in a satin white shirt and a nice deep blue suit for which he must have paid more than what one ought to spend on things that are after all just clothes. ‘Jeans and t-shirt rule, man,’ I thought. His hair was short and gelled to perfection leaving no scope for a few wisps of hair to playfully escape. I could have chuckled at the thought of rockstar-ish long mane that I liked to sport. He wore a silk tie, expensive shoes and even had an overindulgent looking pen in his breast pocket. Ho ho ho! The man had forgotten to wear a smile. Call me narcissist, and you can call my college friends to confirm, but I was always the life of every party around.
As he approached me, I noticed the wrinkles and grays. His steps were slow and he almost dragged himself with every next step. I possibly couldn’t count how many times my friends swore when they often had to run to keep up with me for a stroll. I stared till I found a common ground in his unsure eyes. Who was he? I looked at the man in the cloud-gate’s mirror and wondered for how long I haven’t been me.