Ficus elastica

‘You write?’ I asked opening my laptop.

She turned her head to my direction from her bed on the opposite side of the room and replied ‘Yes.’

‘Where?’ I was curious.

‘Somewhere you don’t look for.’ She seemed uninterested.

But I had to know.

‘On the internet?’ I continued.

‘Why does it matter?’

‘Everything does for curious souls’ I replied tapping away on my keyboard.

The next few minutes passed in silence.

‘Are you an introvert?’ She asked lying on her stomach facing me. ‘I don’t mean in the enlightened sense, the looking within yourself definition of it.’

‘What do you mean then?’ I asked just for the sake of it.

‘Introvert in the general understanding of it.. The Wordweb version of it. Can you read the definition out loud for me?’

‘Do I have to?’ I groaned.

‘You started this conversation. There is no escape midway.’ She had a point.

Introvert:

Noun (psychology) a person who tends to shrink from social contacts and to become preoccupied with their own thoughts

Verb: fold inwards..turn

‘That much of definition is fine’ she interrupted me. ‘Are you one?’

‘What?’

‘Introvert, what are we discussing?’

‘I thought I was asking you about your writing not this!’ I protested.

‘Answer my question. Are you an introvert?’ she continued.

‘You think I am?’ I dodged the question.

‘Why can’t you ever give a normal answer? Yes or No.

‘You say.’ I still refused to answer.

‘No.’ She said now laying on her back looking up at the ceiling.

I looked at the spot right above her head. There was a long crack running from one end of the room to the other. I glanced back at my laptop not knowing why I had looked up in the first place.

‘I think there is something called an ‘Introvert’s dilemma’ she continued.

‘Okies….’ I couldn’t think of a better response.

‘An introvert is never truly herself out in the open. But everyone needs an outlet like the yelling at the top of the building scene in that Irfan Khan movie…which one was it?’

‘Life in a Metro.’ I answered.

‘Yah, that one. Everyone needs to do that or else people would go mad, don’t you think?’

‘No, I don’t’ I said.

‘Ok let’s forget what you think for the moment’ she said.’Introverts need outlets but they express themselves in bits and pieces. Even their personal diaries are cryptic. You get what I mean?’

‘No’ I replied.

‘Look at me’ she ordered sitting crossed leg on her bed. ‘If you are introvert you can’t express yourself in writing unless you are anonymous. And even if you are anonymous you still can’t do justice to the expression as you are constantly at war with your so-called ‘nature’ of not expressing yourself in the open. A diary is a bundle of pages outside your physical body so it’s the ‘open’ too. Get the picture now?’ She asked raising her eyebrows.

I gave her a blank uninterested look.

‘Something like the inherent crisis in capitalism. You write to get some peace of mind but it the very act of doing so leads to unrest as it is the very nature of ‘introvert-ism’.I think I just made a smart analysis! ‘ She laughed. Made any sense?’ she asked me.

‘TATA element is recognized by GTF called TFIID’. Did you understand any part of this sentence?’ I asked her back.

‘No.’ She answered laughing. ‘What are you getting at?’

‘Your psychotic analysis of the so-called ‘introvert-ism’ made as much sense to me as did my sentence made to you. Get the picture?’ I smiled back at her.

‘Ha ha ha ha ha’ she laughed as if I had just tickled her.

‘I’ll sleep now’ she said lying down on her bed after a few minutes.

I could see the trees swaying in the wind outside our window.

‘Which tree are you looking at?’ I asked.

‘Ficus elastica: the one that’s relatively swaying less than the others’ she murmured.

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