February,the 14th.

One of my friends commented on this day, about this day - ‘It’s not love. It’s pseudo-ness in the air’.

She perhaps remarked so seeing the ostentation marking the hollow (and not so hollow) relationships around her. Or perhaps she said it because, like many others, she does not believe in earmarking a single day to celebrate the feeling of ‘being together’. Or perhaps all of it is a charade to her; maybe something as potent and intense a thing like ‘love’ doesn’t exist. Or perhaps…wait let me not blabber too much here; I might just give you the truth!

Anyways, she said it.

                                                            ***

It had been an aggressive match of badminton. Playing, after bleeding in the day’s battle at the workplace, in the heat of action can be quite enlivening. The match had got over. It had been more than the usual I played everyday. I looked at my watch. There were still 10 minutes to go. There was still some time to catch my bus back home. I hurried past the court. I was panting halfway, losing my breath with my cheeks red hot when I bumped into a colleague. I rendered my apologies to which she gave me her timid smile. I smiled back at her.

She was beaming and blushing all over in her rich red satin dress. All red she was.

All red even I was, for a different reason.

She stood at one end to put her dress on display; it sure was her valentine gift

“Nice!” I managed to exclaim.

She then held out her hand and showed me her diamond ring.

“Is your boyfriend a millionaire?” I asked, wheezing a bit.

“He is the …….” something she said. Sure she did, but I wasn’t paying attention to her. I wasn’t there anymore.

I saw him coming towards us.

“Hi”, he smiled at me.

“Hi”, I smiled back.


He then turned towards her. He complimented her on her rich red satin dress. His eyes turned back on me. He stood, smiled and left. I kept on smiling.

Yes, all red even I was, for some reason, (or so I thought.)

'It’s not love. It’s pseudo-ness in the air’.



                                                               ***

"Hi”, he smiled at me.

“Hi”, I smiled back.

We exchanged our quotidian pleasantries.

We met at the photocopier often. He logged out of the machine. His work was not over yet. It seemed a little out of place.

“You may have to go early today. Go ahead”

This was the first that would qualify to be a conversation (in all these days).A thought darted across my mind.

“Thank you!” I said half surprised and half amused. It had been many days when the two of us had run into each other at that very spot. Neither of us had offered the machine to either. Anyway, I logged in and got my work done.

He stood there at a distance and smiled at me.

“What are you doing today?”

Working! Does that not show?
 “Nothing”

“Oh! You won’t be leaving early today then!”

“I never said I would!”

(Pause)

“Why did you think I would have to leave early today?’

He looked at me with a deriding expression on his face, as if I had asked him something very frivolous. Or that I was consciously trying to sound naive. Or that I was trying to elicit something out of him. Or maybe…ok no blabbering!

“Anjali is on leave today. Sana and Irrfan are officially out of the office today, if you know what I mean. I don’t know about the rest, actually I don’t care to know about the rest. But I was expecting to observe a similar pattern in your behavior too."

“Is the department out of work for you?” the words came out without restraint.

“The department also knows what the priority is!” he retorted.” Anyway, the department does not care as long as I attend to them too,”

"Ahem…That somehow sounds spooky to me”

"Not today! Everything is fair in love and war!” He winked.

“When did I say that spooky is unfair? Anyway happy Valentine’s!”

“Happy Valentine’s to you too”. He boyishly smiled

“You sounded as if it was a rule or a protocol or something!” I said before he could say anything.

“With a beautiful weather outside, and the rain, and the general buzz and …”

“And your system and the deadlines and this photo machine, which by the way is now... available for you”

 “uhh well I just thought …”

 I laughed and left.

He laughed and left too. (Without using the machine!)


 ‘It’s not love. It’s pseudo-ness in the air’.


                                                              ***

Comments

hehehe beautifully done.

It's pseudo-ness, or maybe its pseudorandom coincidences that bring lives closer and builds lovely friends.

Nice write up.

Cheers,
Blasphemous Aesthete
Sourav said…
Hahaha! It really is pseudo-ness in the air! ;) well with you atleast it seems :p
look who is talking!:P
An absolutely enjoyable read :)
Saru Singhal said…
Ah, the charm of your writing.

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