Saturday, June 12, 2010


Some say that I live in my own private little world of a bubble, that I'm distracted, unobservant, sometimes oblivious of my surroundings, never paying attention.

Little do they know, my bubble is so large and spacious that it fits their world inside as well as mine.

Despite what one might occasionally think, I miss nothing.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Such a perfect day

Flying high, free, nothing but deep blue skies and perfectly white fluffy clouds. The sensation of the wind all around me, filling my nostrils, my lungs, my mind, my very existence, exhilarated, totally overwhelmed, no pull of gravity, no pull of responsibility, luxuriating in the lightness and the speed, I don’t look down, I don’t look back; flying high and free…

I open my eyes to an extremely irritating repetitive ear-piercing sound. Alarm clock. The relentless pull of gravity, the unfailing pushing and shoving of responsibility as reality kicks in. Time to land…

Better watch out, better not cry, better not stall, I’m telling you why: You’re late... Get your butt moving. Ah, just another day.

Out on the street, driving in the car, stuck in the familiar megacity traffic. Vehicles turning this way or another trying to escape, forming chaotic patterns and lines like ants on the ground, this must look really interesting from the helicopter above; horns blaring, people cussing to themselves, at each other, at nothing in particular, thunderous exhausts and drills piercing holes right through your scull and straight into your brain, pedestrians walking groggily, as if in shock, hypnotized hurry…

Futile attempt to tune the uproar out: turn on the radio; the prosaic sound of contemporary mainstream babble fills the air in the car, making the confined space of the cab feel almost claustrophobic. All of a sudden, tic-toc, it’s about eight-thirty, time for commercials. Sales, someone’s shrieks punch through my eardrums with deliberate exuberance. Don’t miss this chance, unique opportunity, get out of your seat NOW. Never before. Come in time. Obtain. Buy. Eat, drink, dress. Consume. Become. Haven’t you heard? Haven’t you done it yet? Once, twice, thrice, sold. Daym. Head throbbing. The spokesperson takes his turn to the torture stand. Ha ha ha, did you see her last night? What was it she said? OMG you should have heard her. You should have seen her. Sanctimonious, self-gratifying, self-reverential, the words crawl out of the speakers soaking every surface of the car, venom saturating the morning breeze. The trite, the petty and the tedious in a constant circle of self-preservation, playing mind games with my consciousness.

Enough. Feeling slightly ill, I push the cd in the player with a bit too much force, wondering why the car hasn’t come to life to protest just yet. The sonorous whistle of flute accompanied by a perfect rhythm of drums and bass, the sweet hoarseness of guitar flowing sinuously around me. In the shuffling madness, I’ve got locomotive breath… thank God for small breaks. Roll down the automatic windows; let the air in with a gust. Step on the gas pedal, leave the sluggish convoy of cars behind.

The horns are still honking, the pedestrians are still walking with zombie-like grace, the sun is climbing higher in the morning sky, the temperature rising. And I’m finally there.

So… who should we backstab today? One of our colleagues? One of our clients? One of our bosses? Gossiping, whispering, muffled laughs and sniggers and stolen glances all around. Mock concern and envy, vulgar thoughts, and the same scream blaring from the speakers: Sales, have you heard yet? Are you late? Be the person of your dreams; consume!

NO. Headphones plug my ears with an instant reflex movement. We used to swim the same moonlight waters, oceans away from the wakeful day… Ring ring. Who’s there? The brutal reality calling regarding a fax not sent, a payment not made, a draft not yet finished, a commitment not kept. Troubleshooting. What’s not working? Why not? Who’s being impatient? Who’s being perversely and deliberately rude? Who’s tampering with my temper?

Shhhh….. I place my head once again between my headphones. His fingers touch the piano keys, and the magic of the profound melody is unleashed to compose the soundtrack of the shapes, forms and textures; images of possible futures being produced as if on their own on my screen right before my incredulous eyes.

Buzz kill: the phone, the door, the e-mail, the cell, the guy across the room with a trivial remark on something I couldn’t care less about or a personal question I hold no interest whatsoever in answering. Grumph. Shrug. Back to work, back to my magic bubble world of magical notes and colorful images. Run, on and on, run on and on, the loneliness of the long distance runner… the loneliness of the high-endurance interior designer…


Jump-cut several hours later, with my hair pulled back and stuffed securely in my swim cap, my eyes looking through goggles. The shock of the cool water raises goose bumps on my skin, washing away the sticky residue of the troublesome day that clings on my body like perspiration under the scorching sun. Ears, thoughts, senses submerged, flooded with the soothingly familiar smell of chlorine. Watching the lazy reflections sent off by the water dancing wriggly on the ceiling, marveling at the perfect diagram of refracted little waves projected all over the bottom, the silence of the solitary pool is almost eerie in its tranquility.

Swimming on and on, nothing but clear water and dim light. The fluid invigoration all around me, its freshness filling my nostrils, my lungs, my mind, my very existence, exhilarated, totally overwhelmed, no pull of gravity, no pull of responsibility, luxuriating in the lightness and the speed, I don’t look out, I don’t look back; swimming on and on, I smile to myself, totally free...

Perfect antigravity. Perfect motion. Perfect speed.
Perfect day.