Wednesday, January 01, 2014

The Abandoned, The Murmurings of It All

Sitting in a dark corner bar, kissing you and thinking about all the things we will be doing together, asking the barman for two shots to take in the name of love… Doing what we do best.

I look back and I see myself. I see myself staring at me with eyes filled with big and small dreams. I was fourteen, impatiently waiting for the love of my life to arrive and to put me on a white horse and take me to the land of the amazing. I was fourteen and wearing Band-Aid on my nipples before putting on a dress to prevent the painful touch of the dress against my growing breasts. I was standing in a red dress that my mom had brought me from America where my cousins were said to live happily ever after, the land of the free, the land of big dreams, the land where Daddy always talked about with love and nostalgia.

Sitting in a corner bar, already well over the glamour of the land of the free, sitting there with you and living away the last hours of the year.

Sipping on your beer with much eagerness, you were telling me to set free, to not live to abide by all the freaking rules under the sky, to let my words out without aborting them like a fetus doomed to die unborn. You were almost yelling at me: “Azadeh, stop killing your mind. You have to let go. You must let go”.

The fourteen year old was standing behind the glass and watching me with her curious, adolescent and lustful eyes. She was free, a lot freer that I am now in the land of the free. She did not yet understand the true meaning of the word “consequence” in any language. She just didn't yet have a sky to fly in, but in her little tiny room located in a dictatorial spot on Earth, she would let go without even realizing what it is to let go.

The fourteen year old was looking at me. Your voice faded away in the land of the abandoned. I wondered if she wants to be me when she grows up or maybe a lot more famous and glamorous than me. The fourteen year old always had these dreams in which she would be on a stage with thousands of people cheering for her. She did not know why they were cheering for her. Nevertheless, she would proudly wave at the crowds.  So, maybe she did not want to become me sitting and chatting away 2013 in a dark quiet corner bar hiding in the arms of a man from Mars whom had become the most real thing on Earth to her. Regardless, I could tell in her eyes that a sense of familiarity, her institution perhaps, was attracting her to me. As if, she knew I was her.  

You were holding my shoulders and with your sweet colorful eyes you were staring into my eyes and tirelessly and loudly singing the same song, “You need to tell the world what’s up! You know what? Forget about the world! Tell me what’s up! You have been quiet for enough years. You have some shit to say. I know you do. You gotta talk! You know this world is not real. Nothing is real.” Knocking on my head, you continued, “This world inside this round head is all there is, it is the only real thing. Describe it”.

Unable to respond to your passionate plea, I looked away, trying to kill your voice that was interrupting the world of the abandoned, the world I have shared with no one for ages, not even with myself. The world that I see no point in sharing or to even bringing back to life. What’s dead is dead. The dead belong to the land of the forgotten. It’s a sin to bring them back to life. They don’t belong. We are all dead. We don’t belong. We just think we do.

The fourteen year old waved at me. Finally, she waved at me. She was real. I kissed you on the lips and excused myself to step out for a second. The fourteen year old was so happy to see me. I went up to her and said, “Hey”. Quietly smiling, she stepped forward to hug me. I hugged her. She smelled like my god damn room. My, how much I loved that room, that world, that universe. She smelled like Daddy’s cologne. She smelled like Mom’s old red lipstick, the one that I used to steal every time she was away. The fourteen year old was unwanted, the fourteen year old was terror, she was misery. She had to go. She had to die forever. She had to go.

The fourteen year old smelled like the candles in my room, the candles that Daddy was convinced will one day set our home on fire, since I loved falling asleep in their dim light every night. Her new red dress smelled like Mom’s suitcase, the one she loved the most when she still didn't yet hate suitcases.

Thinking that I was caressing her kindly in my arms, I let go of her to realize that I was beating her up this whole time. Her nose was bleeding; her eyes were filled with rage and humiliation. Waking up to my own crime, I beat her up even more until she ran away in terror while bleeding from her nose and her back. Just before she ran away, I grabbed her irritatingly naive face in my two hands and told her to die, to get lost forever. I told her that her naivete, her calm sense of belonging and her dreams bother me, that the thought of her makes me nauseous.  She only looked in terror. She never talked. I wonder if her voice was similar to mine.

Watching her run in disbelief and looking down at my bloody hands in despair, you stepped out of the bar for a smoke. With your usual smile, you kissed me and said, “Watching some young professionals pass by on this fine New Year’s Eve, madam? Indeed, indeed”, you mocked my usual “sophisto” talk and you laughed. I love your laugh. It’s the laughter of a child, something that you manage to preserve again the storm of adulthood.

I don’t know if you saw what I just did. Regardless, you have always been my partner in crime. I rest my head on your shoulder and tremble at the insanity of all times, of everything that runs by us faster than we can ever comprehend. I wanted to show you my bloody hands and to tell you why I don’t speak up, why I fear speaking up, but I didn't. Knowing you, even blood on my hands wouldn't convince you. I will speak up, somehow someday somewhere. I will.

The fourteen year old grew up last night with blood all over her face. She needed some pain that made her forget the pain of her breast growing underneath her dress. I helped her. We all grow up. We all die. So did I one night one too many years ago. I taught her rage last night. She needed to learn it. She will hate me all of her life. But, she will always remember me. Just like I always remember her, just like I thought of her for so many years before she set out to visit me from behind that corner bar last night.

“It’s cold outside”, I tell you. “Indeed madam”, you mock me. “It is rather chilly and all, indeed”, you mock me. We go back into the bar. You take one more shot and you quietly humor the couple who were sitting next to us. “You see, the girl doesn't give a shit. The poor guy is going to go to bed all alone. He looks 12 to me”, you say.  “What do you think, madam?” you mock me. I say nothing while smiling at your silly statement. “Rather indeed, madam”, you mock my silence.

“Happy New Year, YO!” you say before kissing me. “Happy New Year, sweetheart”, I say to you. “sweeeeeeeeeeetheaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaart!”, you mock me.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Café no more!

Café used to be the place to be. Café was the way to embrace loneliness and to wrap myself around all the dreams and the void that would take over my body every day. I would go the café and just lose myself in my work, research, paper, part-time job or simply playing around on Facebook.

Café no more. When all those dreams start to kick in or not one by one. When you get into the illusion of growing up and living differently than before. Café no more.

It becomes about planning everything the way you should, about trying to nurture your relationship. It becomes about being a responsible citizen, becoming the premium customer at your bank, paying all your bills on time, going to work on time, coming home like a half corpse, go for dinner with your fiancé and passing out much too early every night against your will. It becomes about pushing your real dreams such as working on your novel and reading all those books you always wanted to read back to the end of your to-do-list every day, every month, every year. It becomes about once in a while waking up to this routine and the void and about calming down yourself by thinking about the amazing things and love that you found in life. You tell yourself that when one has a nice job, a nice partner, a nice apartment and a loving family she should not complain. But, you still do and you get mad at yourself for complaining. You complain about all the wrong things. You complain about being tired when in reality you are angry with yourself for gradually retiring yourself from your big dreams that involved creativity, lots of it.

Café no more is a stage in life. In North America, the concept of the “stage of life” is how many of us define ourselves and try to justify the things that we presently do and we don’t.  It is a funny concept in reality. How much can “stage” change from one year to another. Maybe a lot. I don’t know. It gives you a sense of life going forward and you moving on to a better and more fulfilling life.

When you try to combat temporal depression that attacks you in the middle of a serious meeting or at a gathering with like-minded friends and colleagues, you try to think of yourself as the savvy driver of a truck that is simply parked for years, a driver that walked out of a lifetime dream and came to help the truck to serve its purpose in life.

You let your mind go, as a like-minded friend and colleague goes on at a cocktail party in telling you about her achievements in life. You think of a truck that has been long parked and you as a driver. Looking around, you worry that all these people around you think the truck is on the road, that it is moving. You worry that the truck has been parked for too long, that even the engine of the truck is lost in an illusion of motion, of moving forward.

You are a driver who knows she will find a way inside of that truck with or without keys and gets it moving, on the road, with music blasting in the background, and an indefinite destination in mind.  Then as the colleague asks you about your work and life, you catch yourself in a difficult position: “I am engaged. I work at an international organization. I work on the Middle East North Africa region.” Struggling to walk back to the truck, you are faced with yet another question: “Nice. That all sounds exciting. Where are you from?” Worried that the person may go on asking about your life story, like a robot that has answered one question much too many times, you put on a fake smile with emotions frozen behind your thankfully black eyes that don’t convey much anyways, you say “Iran. I am originally from Iran. But, I have been here for more than a decade.”

Tired and ready to go home, you convince yourself that being on the road is overrated. You remind yourself that in the past years you have lived in enough countries and continents to know they don’t solve your problem, that the void goes on, that the saga with self continues.

Café no more is a stage where you only go to a café when your routine is disrupted for some reason, an argument with a loved one perhaps. You go back to a café after months, you look around with tears in your eyes and you remember all the hours, days, months and years you spent with yourself at cafes.

You begin to overhear conversations around you. You can pick the regular customers from the occasional ones. You can easily pick out the café no more people from the rest. Those who have no plans to leave any time soon, who try to make a conversation with you by apologizing for kicking your foot under the table and their attempt failing with you responding, “No worries. You did not kick me, you probably kicked the chair”.
Then there are the rest: Those with lots of tattoos who meet up with their friends and talk about the philosophy of being punk, their punk group’s mascot and the meaning of their tattoos. 

The Afghan immigrant men behind you are talking about everything under the immigration sky starting getting their driver’s license and the road exam all the way to being single men, eligible and Afghan in DC and looking for a nice girl to meet and marry possibly. They say all that in a language, a tone, that has the magical force of awakening the long neglected sense of home and putting a smile on your face. Their voice arbitrarily reminds you the dry cold of the mountains in the margins of Tehran and you go on thinking of the smell of bonfires at home and the salty taste of grilled corn from childhood. You laugh at yourself for having developed "orientalist" tendencies about your own land. "How do three Afghan men talking about their life here remind you of a bonfire in the North of Iran, and of salty corn?", you ask yourself in a silly tone echoed in your blank thoughts and you move on from the smokey scent and the salty taste of home.

Then, you spot the café no more fellows: Those who ran away from home for not an hour, but “50 minutes”, to finish a “PowerPoint presentation” on the weekend for their talk on the following Tuesday. Those who get a phone call from the wife, have a strangely short and even annoyed conversation with her, and in one second after the phone call they disappear back into the café no more stage.

You then look at your watch. It has already been over 30 minutes that you have been at the café. Longer than your café no more stage recommends. You get a reminder on your Google calendar to go to a holiday party where you will meet like-minded professionals. You are late. You are always late. It's a battle against you and your Google Calender. Remembering that you forgot your business cards at the office, you hope to yourself that you meet some relevant colleagues for work purposes. And, you step out of the café, thinking which of your two night dresses you ought to wear tonight: the business casual black dress or the other business casual black dress?

The “café no more” stage is on full force. The saga goes on. 

Friday, March 01, 2013


I don’t like books that glorify India or any other journey to any such “exotic” lands. After all I am from one such land not too far away from India. So, let’s face away from the Gateway of India and all alike for now.

Let’s get to the rats. The dead ones. The smashed ones. The ones whose eyes are being eaten by a savage hungry crow four times the size of a normal crow.

You brought me here. You like life raw. I don’t. I like life dressed up in beautiful colors and with a touch of makeup. I like life in a beautiful night dress and eyes covered with a sky of blue shadow above them right underneath the eyebrows. I like nails polished with red, pink, purple or the heck with it maybe even green. I like beautiful, yet plain, jewelry sets. I like long dresses that bring out the curves and show them off to the world. I like a clean face with clear skin that shines against the glow of sunshine. I like nicely done hair either updo or dancing all the way below the shoulders. I like to color my lips with rosy lipstick. In my mind I was once a princess walking around in ballrooms with hundreds of people watching me in admiration.

I like to be the elite. You do, too. But you so naturally and easily connect with anyone anywhere anyway. I don’t. I like to sit on the balcony of colonial buildings, sip on my coffee and talk to a girl friend about the burdens of luxury. Once in a while I put a few rupees in the hands of beautiful glowing beggar whose eyes are wild, resentful, drunk, proud and lustful, and feel kindheartedly guilty as I pass them by.

To you rats are rats. Perhaps even born to be hit by cars and eaten by crows. To me rats are ugly disgusting creatures that I want nothing to do with. But, I can also cry for a rat whose eyes a crow joyously chews.

To you that kitten, whose beheaded body was lying on one side of the back street next to our apartment and her head on the other, is life. To me the beheaded kitten is death, is a sign of doomed life taken away prematurely.

To you, with all of your discipline, chaos is the vein of life. To me chaos is the root cause of stress, of trauma, of unexpected outcomes that I so passionately fear. You love unexpected outcomes. You find life in them. I find death in them; loss perhaps.

To you life is the state of being. To me life is a battlefield.

In a hundred years, I will shiver at the sight of every smashed rat. But, hey, after all crows crave some snacks once in a while and what better than a rat's eye?!

I love you and if you so happen to be in Bombay, I love Bombay, too.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Reminiscence in Soap Water

A closet actress, she was good at playing a little girl. Maybe in her own imagination, away from the huff and puff of this world, she never really grew up.

The little chubby girl with frizzy hair runs around the house and sings a song, “One day, a Mr. rabbit walked into a dark tiny hole where a mouse lived…” He picks her up, kisses her meaty cheek and takes her for the nightly bath. While sitting on her little pink stool with her feet in the large pink bowl designated for her nightly feet-washing ceremony, she taps on her dad’s shoulder who is busy washing her feet in warm soap water before bed. He looks up with a smile. She asks , “Babyee, will you come to my house when I grow up and get married and wash my feet every night?”

The spoiled little girl that she is waits for a pleasing response. Her dad chuckles while massaging her little chubby feet and says, “You will always be my little angel. But, I won’t be able to wash your feet when you grow up, little princess!” She pulls her foot from his strong hands and screams, “ No, you have to! I order you to! You have to! You must!” Then she starts to cry and calls out her mom, “Mummy, he doesn’t want to wash my feet when I grow up. Go away! I hate you. You don’t love me!”

While drying her feet, he lowers his head and kisses her chubby foot. She kicks his face and says, “No, you don’t love me. You have to come to my house when I grow up and wash my feet if you love me!” She kicks him with his every gesture of love. “Mummy, he doesn’t love me!” she screams.

Her mom walks into the bathroom. “What are you two doing here? Why are you screaming at your dad? Shshshshsh!” her mom says annoyingly.

She starts to cry even more loudly as he takes her in his arms and walks to her bedroom. It is time for a bedtime story. “He doesn’t love me!” the little girl says with a shaky voice while looking at her mom.

Her mom walks closer to them, wipes off the tears from her chubby face and asks, “Why? What happened?”

She begins to cry again and says, “He says that he won’t come to my house to wash my feet when I grow up! He hates me.” Her mom begins to laugh and her father kisses her short frizzy curly hair.

“You are a princess”, he whispered in her ear as she puts her thumb in her mouth while staring at him and commandingly waiting for him to tell her the same old story: “Once upon a time, there was a lonely princess…”

Twenty and some years pass. “You don’t love me anymore!” she whispers into the air while sitting on the edge of the bed and staring at her dirty feet. She smiles…and, little else to report.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

He was a Dog

He was a dog; pure and chaste. He was of the kind who had fallen in love once in his life and had lost that love due to shyness to express his feelings. Some call this quality of his a form of excessive pride. But, I think he is a chaste dog; a chaste dog whose morale is only fragile when it comes to politics. Once upon a time, he was a revolutionary. I do not recall in which place or year. I heard he was hanged once, but survived the execution by a mere coincidence the details of which I do not recall.

Such a handsome dog he is: fit and muscular, as white as a bridal dress of a virgin bride, stainless and with big curious eyes. He rarely barks and if he does, it is a gracious bark; one that has rhythm and commands respect. He looks seemingly indifferent to his immediate environment. But, he observes with the eyes of an eagle. He finds humans excessively boring and finds their ideas outdated and colorless. He especially hates those horrific animals, otherwise called humans, who violently show him affection as they pass by his owner and compliment the owner for her handsome dog. In particular, among the human race, he resents his owner. When his eyes meet hers, he conveys silent hatred and ridicules her when she misunderstands this revengeful glance as a sign of love and affection of the dog for her.

Her former lover called him disturbed. He thinks she was right. They only met once on the sidewalk when her owner was pulling her away from him. They fell in love on sight; or at least this is what he thinks. He thinks she was incredibly smart for detecting his disturbed soul on the spot. In fact, this might have been the reason for why he fell in love with her. Ever since, he embraces his own disturbed soul with pride as this is the only souvenir of that failed love extravaganza; as he calls it.

He does not recall when he was born a dog; he only speculates that it must have been when he faced the misery of his own revolution. He remembers giving a speech to a nation of sorts. He recalls millions of hopeful eyes staring at him in search of their prosperous future. He remembers killing them in the name of some glorious revolution of sorts. And, he remembers long evenings saturated with night letters, clandestine political lovemaking and glorious laughter filled with orgasmic fear of death and execution. He remembers dying and he remembers rising a hero who participated in bloody rebellions against his own revolution. But, nobody ever listened to him anymore.

He became a heroic statue glorified as a patriotic solider who lived and died for his own nation of sorts. And, once a hero, nobody cared about what he had to say anymore. He stood there with his lifeless body to represent death and cruelty in the name of some glorious revolution. They executed thousands in that square in front of his eyes and when he cried his tears rolled over his statue-body. Nobody ever noticed his tears, his screams, his regrets, his self-beatings and self-hatred. They only praised him and eventually when the time came they threw pebbles at his statue. He enjoyed the intolerable pain of the pebbles thrown against his statue-body beyond words. He remembered her say, “you are disturbed!” and he remembered that failed love extravaganza that had yet to happen.

He is not there anymore; wherever that was. He does not know where he is. In fact, the reason he does not escape the miserable life of his owner might be that he has no clue where in this world he is and he is afraid of getting lost; or at least this has been his excuse for staying around in the past years. “Such a handsome dog!” the owner’s neighbor disgustingly compliments him as she walks by.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Perhaps this is the Right Place to Start the Story..

Perhaps this is the right place to start the story. Right is such a funny word. But, you know what I mean, don’t you? Columbus Circle, New York City, Year 2011. I mean what other setting could be more typically authentic for the story of an Americanized immigrant than midtown Manhattan and its organized chaos? But, my story, this story, has very little to do with New York City. In fact, if anything this story is one of the loss of time and space altogether.

You know, I have lately started to like New York, because it makes me feel the very skin of the person who I feel I have grown to become: a lost exiled immigrant who looks more Americanized than anything else really perhaps. It is not like Washington DC where it gives me the illusion of one day climbing up the ladder of power with the help of my story and growing to become a serious American politician of sorts; a feeling that admittedly used to intoxicate me with one million dreams. It is also not like Cambridge, Massachusetts where I went to Harvard University and where one lives the illusion of being among the few intelligent minds of the world; a feeling that I admittedly embraced for some years. New York makes me feel like a commoner; even worse like an immigrant commoner who is going to have to start from point zero over and over again and never really reach the top or perhaps never really aspiring to reach the top. Now, I know I sound like an elitist woman who tries to resemble the sound of the masses. Don’t ask me why I have this feeling. I just somehow do. It could be the greatness of New York or somehow the invisibility that it grants the people or its particular rhythm. Whatever it is, it is only recently that I have begun to feel the the pulse of this town beating against mine or against millions rather. It is a rough feeling and an irritatingly honest one. It is like a man that does not know romance, but knows love, a man that does not know how to pamper you or rather does not think that pampering you is necessary, but knows how to love you better than all other men in the world or at least that is what you think.

Somehow sitting here today in my formal suit, waiting for work meetings and biting on a large slice of pizza while holding a second slice in my other hand, I feel the way I think I should have felt all these years: numb. I feel numb and therefore liberated. I feel I don’t belong to this place nor to any other place really. One tear drops from my left eye right on my ravaged slice of pizza. I blame it on the wind; the deceiving warm breeze of November that has been procrastinating in turning freezing cold.

I feel full. It is such a warm November day here in the city. I feel sleepy and lazy. I look at a homeless guy who is sleeping across the street and envy him for his deep sleep. It has been now almost a month that I have not been able to really sleep. My sleep has become as light as a feather; that’s only when I actually do fall asleep. Some Chinese woman at the other side of the circle shouts out somebody’s name and for some silly reason I hear her say my name in a Chinese accent. I get up and look around to see which of my long list of shadow-like friends have bumped into me and soon I realize it is the reunion of two Chinese ladies on the other side of the square and their excitement has nothing to do with me.I miss the days when I was certain that I were the center of the universe. I don't remember how and when my bubble burst. It must been hard to wake up from that dream. I do not really recall. Mild Alzheimer, I repeat the mild kind, could be a blessing at times.

Well, in any case, I said to you that I want to tell you some story. But, honestly, I wonder if you are even interested. It could be quite an arbitrary story. It certainly feels so damn irrelevant to where I am sitting as we speak. You must have heard these stories a million times. I mean looking around me here in this town, there must be at least some few million stories like the one that I wish I had the time to tell you. Maybe some other time! But, right now, I am enjoying the invisibility that this city has granted me. I have to run to my meeting. New York is a wonderland, but oh my, I miss Tehran so much. I heard it snowed there today. I wish I could just touch that silky snow of Tehran; this is just me romanticizing the snow that perhaps has already turned grey in the pollution of Tehran. I wonder if my dad was able to feel the snow this time around. It must have sat on his gravestone. I hope he enjoyed the fresh feeling of it. I am late for my meeting.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

I am a doorknob.

I am a doorknob. You don’t take us seriously because we don’t have eyes or ears or the ability to write in your language. And you have learned in your small world of human beings not to notice insignificant objects or even insignificant human beings. It’s funny actually, because were you aware of my presence my life would have been so incredibly boring with your overhyped consciousness.

You see, I am stuck in this door for as long as somehow someone decides to destroy this door and even if this door is destroyed my freedom is not entirely guaranteed as the door could well get thrown away along with its doorknob. But, unlike most of you, freedom has little meaning to me anyways. I am after all here in this world to serve the door. Without it I would have no identity. I even know a few doorknobs who awaited freedom from their tyrannical doors and now they are feeling lonely sitting in a secondhand hardware store waiting for a door or its owner to take them home. I heard from another doorknob friend in this hallway who was at that same secondhand store not too long ago that the life of used doorknobs that have to wait for a new door is, indeed, quite miserable. They apparently miss their old door and could never get over the trauma of this loss. At the same time, they feel quite liberated and feel that they could finally be themselves away from the rules, regulations and expectations of the door. But then the life on the shelves of a secondhand store is also not all that exciting. Yes, there is, of course, more freedom of expression and a sense of community that all the doorknobs on the shelves could enjoy. But, then again, there is always this fear that at any moment any one of them could get picked up and disappear forever.

The first time we all got sold after sitting on the shelves of a hardware store of sorts, we really never said goodbye, because we really did not understand what it was to be taken away for good for the sake of a door. We would see our doorknob friends leave and we also were impatiently and nervously waiting to leave the routine of the shelves. We sort of thought that the world out there must be more exciting than sitting idly on those shelves.

To be fair, co-existence with doors could be quite adventurous and interesting. For instance, I have had the chance to see and hear so much by just simply serving a door of a ... Well, actually, what does it matter which door I serve? Let it remain unknown as I enjoy mysteries. In fact, as a doorknob devoted to my job of separating various artificially built spaces and serving as the connecting object between the two worlds if necessary, I could tell you that there is no need for all mysteries to be revealed. You human beings are somehow obsessed with the idea of creating “mysteries” in your creative minds—that can’t stop imagining scenarios and things— and then you spend days, months, years or perhaps a lifetime trying to reveal the unknowns of this mystery.

While I agree with you that sometimes such curiosity is critical, I think you do too much uncovering of the unknowns and you somehow never seem to stop. After one mystery that eats your soul for some time, you find some other mystery to tackle. And, at the same time[imagine the humble doorknob that I am amusingly chuckling at your humanness right now] you create and hide behind so many mysteries yourself, hoping for nobody in the world or nobody that particularly matters to the story to find out about your mystery. Let me tell you, you are all somehow taking it all too seriously. Let’s be honest, you like this game of chasing after mysterious things and you also enjoy creating secrets that you are either ashamed or scared to reveal or you simply enjoy the mysterious look. Either way, my dear humans, you ought to relax with your divisions of facts and fictions. You are often working against your nature, I have realized. Your nature is to create and live in the grey area and yet you are mostly busy diagnosing your life or others in black and white terms. Let go of these ancestral complexes that you have allowed too deeply into your lives, if I may give you my humble opinion. How unappreciative of me to give advice to my creators and Gods, you might think.

In my years of being a doorknob to this particular door, I have had moments when I have cried or laughed with you. I have been there listening to your worries, private weak, emotional, strong and logical moments when you have thought nobody else is listening to you. Some of you keep thinking that there is a “mystery” out there in the sky named “God” that is watching over you; which well might or might not be true and anyways if you want it to be true it should well be true and if you don’t want it to be true it should well be untrue. But, sometimes I wonder. How could you be so aware of the presence of an at least seemingly physically absent existence (God) when you easily forget about the presence of so many things in your immediate surroundings? You know, you have created us. So, if you think about it, in essence, you are our God. And yet, I see your weakness. Your weakness is your discomfort with who you are and your lack of interest in your routine.

You create things and once they are there you forget about them. You only remember them again when they are absent. Have you ever thought of the doorknob when it has been properly working? Have you ever thought of it other than in moments that you were closing the door shut or opening it wide? Have you ever thought of a doorknob other than the moments when you were, rightfully or otherwise, secretly doing something or trying to sneak into the secret world of another human being? Have you ever thought of the doorknob when it has served no particular purpose for you other than simply being there? Ok, maybe I am asking for too much from you.

There is only one thing that I know, my dears: You are simpler than you think and even the illiterate insignificant doorknob that I am, I could understand your desire for sophisticated facts and certainties. I could tell your own stories to you better than you can imagine, because you are all incredibly interesting characters. Even the most seemingly boring of you has a story that could excite a doorknob that sits at the edge a door and watches all day. Or, perhaps I find it all amusing and story-like as all the restricting facts in your lives appear as unique fictions to me. You are all stories to me. I used to take you more seriously. But, then as your stories impacted me too much emotionally, the door advised me to watch you like I would watch a movie: as fictive characters who come and go and do normal or strange things as their story requires them to. Keep playing the movie, keep playing your roles, keep writing your story. Keep entertaining me!

And now that you read all my ramblings, I give you the unknown fact about me that bothered you all along. I am the doorknob of room 196 at a mental hospital not too far from you. I love my location as where I am (at least on the more private side of the door where one of my two sides is facing) there lives a man who lives his life like a story. Yet, on the other side of this door, the educated doctors, nurses or the worried loved ones of the man that keep appearing and disappearing seem to be too occupied with the world of facts. They keep speculating over the diseases of the man at the better side of this door and try to seek all the one million reasons for his endless misery. But, only I know that he is happy. He is just not in love with facts. Call me a crazy doorknob, but I relate much more with the man at the better side of this door. Whenever you stop seeking facts about him and his diagnosis for the day and shut the door of 196 closed for the evening, he looks at me, chuckles and says, “They all have to relax a bit! Poor things!” And, he apathetically goes on with his story away from the huff and puff of your factually obsessed world.

No offense, I am not insulting you or anything with all of this. In fact, go on with what you are doing. Without you, even the story of room 196 will become too plain and undisputed. Go on with your obsession with facts. After all, it’s who you are. Why change?

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