Monday, January 11, 2010


It's past seven in the evening. I am sitting at my desk in office, all alone, listening to a barely audible hum. I think it's from the central aircon. Or it could be the hard drive/fan in my laptop. Or both. I really can't be sure, especially over the clackety-clack of my keyboard. I stop typing, but that doesn't really help determine the source of the hum, so I continue with my clackety-clacking.

I wonder if that's what I would hear, the hum, if I ever managed to get into my own head and listened to my own brain working. So I get in and...wait, there isn't any hum in my head. No. Only a gentle swishing sound, the kind made by a gentle breeze in an empty room. Definitely no brain-work related hum. Only the breeze swishing. Wonder how the breeze got in. Maybe through the nose, since I breathe. Nope, I know the air I breathe goes down into my lungs, not up into my head. Ok, maybe through my ears. Hmmm, that must be it, the ears. More importantly though, no brain. Empty head.

But then I can't be a living, breathing human being without possessing atleast an excuse for a brain. And if it ain't in my head where the heck is it? It definitely wasn't moved because the room looks empty, covered with layers of dust, grime and....I mean, the inside of my head looks empty, it is covered with layers of dust and grime (must have been carried in by the breeze) and above all it shows the classic sign of not having been used - there is dust and grime all over the place. Hence proved, my brain hasn't been moved from my head. But I still don't know where it is. I start thinking and that upsets me more because there I am, in my empty head, thinking! On one hand, empty head, on the other, thought. A contradiction if ever one hit me in my face.

That's when I hear yet another noise. Not the hum, not the swish, not the clackety-clack. It's something else. Familiar. Melodious. Like a bell ringing. By this time, I am trying to figure out what this new noise is, having forgotten about the contradiction that had hit me in the face. The new noise is slowly growing in volume. And before I realise it, the noise is too loud, reverbrating off the walls of my empty head. It is so loud now I have to do something before my head splits and spits me out. But what do I do? I start running back the same way I came in. Atleast I think it is the same way. But there is no way to tell. The insides of my head look the same, dusty and grimy, any which way I turn and there is no way to be sure I am headed the right way. But I keep going. I need to, to escape the ringing noise. It didn't seem possible but it seemed to grow even louder with every step I take. There just doesn't seem to be a way out. Nor does there seem to be a possibility of getting away from the noise. It was like a physical thing, slowly, steadily and inexorably moving towards me, seemingly intent on...well I don't know what its intentions were. But they didn't seem friendly. I kept running, it kept getting louder and........

My wife is done with her work and is ready to leave for the day. She has just called. To ask if I can leave for home with her. I said yes, packed up and left the office.

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