Bookmark #708

On a rather regular day with a rather regular sky, I had a rather regular realisation regarding the range of my reticence. How did it begin? It began with a friend saying something, and it sticking like a spot of ink accidentally sputtered onto a white wall—unintentional, sure, but permanent for all intents and purposes. What was said, what it meant is all irrelevant, for the inquiry has been made, and the thinking has been done: I have realised how much I have changed.

The world claims, as part of its peevish plethora of platitudes, that people can’t place much but remember how we made them feel. It’s a popular claim based on a popular quote, but like all things that are too simple as all popular things often are, it is as true as the time on a broken clock—which is to say it is mostly wrong. People only remember what they remember. On most days, they forget most about others and themselves. It’s a tall order for them to remember your continuity. Recency is all that is remembered, and it rewrites and resets the rest in its reflection. But why this sudden detour into what the world says about what people remember? Because of how we change.

We change slowly, in pieces and places no one—not even we—can notice. But then, the toll of remembering how and who we were falls only on ourselves. Nobody can remember this for us; we must do the heavy lifting. And how do we change?

Time passes, and something gets knocked down here and there. If we notice it, we replace it, but what if we don’t? If it is something small like a split of paint on the wall, or a screw that moves freely if you turn it too tight, or a table that wobbles a bit, what then? What if it is something we ignore? Then, we change as things change—without anyone knowing or, better, remembering.

Summer slowly swerves and swivels with the splashes of monsoon, and I sit at this cafe, tallying the little things I have ignored too long, of how they have changed who I am. But of course, there is no answer, no conclusion, and if you ask anyone else but myself, I assure you, there will be no memory. No one but we, ourselves, are the reliable narrators. We write about it if we can; otherwise, we write it off.

// if you want to support this walk to nowhere, you can pitch in here