Sunday, 28 July 2013

"I don't really exist"

Tring Tring the phone rang. I hoped it to be Ritika and it was her to my delight.

“If I ever become famous and if anyone from my future generations would ever decide to pen down our family history  apart from a lot of chaotic confusions ,it would contain 7 world wars and if someone decides to do a thesis of the same they would discover a very important facet i.e the source of genes for weak mathematics was me.”

“Shamika, it all lies in your head. I have recently read somewhere- whatever you tell your mind you become that. There are so many people who aren’t good at Maths, you aren’t the first one”

“ But Ritika, I’m the first one in my entire family and extended family. They are all good at Maths, Mom got me checked when I was 7.”

“Yes, but it was to know your mental state and not for tracing your DNA. Plus, the doctor had told her very clearly that you are normal. Your problem is that you refuse to concentrate.”

“That isn’t true, ofcourse I try to but just when I begin to try to understand the shapes of all those numbers get the hell out me. '0' is my favourite number, because it is the only number that is a complete shape, all other numbers are incomplete shapes. The moment those numbers come before my eyes I spontaneously begin thinking of ways to reshape it and just when I start imagining nicer shapes, I realize that the solution to the problem is already explained.”

“By concentration , I mean this. You focus in the wrong areas.”

“I don’t deliberately do that, it just happens. I cannot explain you. According to you Maths is the most logical subject, but I think the other way round.  Who decided to name numbers?  Why do we stretch only 4 fingers to show 4? And could anyone tell me why all the scientists known to us were all good at maths…. Why wasn’t there anyone who wasn’t good at Math?”

“Scientists who were uninterested in math were mostly called Artists. Anyway,  why do you make such a deal out of Maths every time? You know you are intelligent, you top in History every year  and you are not bad in other subjects?”

“Yes, but our school mark sheet has a column for Math Marks?  Until that column disappears, it is normal to worry.”

“Okay, Okay, what is it that you are studying now? How much is left?”

“Firstly, I don’t study Maths … I learn it and secondly ask me how much is done….because I forget what I studied 10 mins ago after every 10 mins. I’m left with everything I guess! WoW… tomorrow is Maths paper”

“Relax Shamika, you still have one night to go.”

“That is exactly the problem. Like every year Mom had taken a leave today for my Maths paper.”

“hahahaha… 7th world war in 7th grade, ahhahaha”


“Ritika,I will have to hang the phone now, I think she is done with pleasing all the Gods… now she’ll displease me. I’ll call you later. Byee”


I ran into the kitchen, checked on my mother’s gestures to know her mood when she said, “God, be with my child, let only those questions whose answers are known to Shamika  be asked in the paper.”

I told myself in my mind, “If god was with me, there would never be Maths.”

My mom stared at me as if she was trying to read my mind.

I grabbed hold of the bananas lying in the fruit basket and said, “Do you think GOD will listen to a woman who hits her child so brutally.”

My mom looked me in the eye. Her sight penetrated right through such that all her thoughts passed like cosmic rays into my brain and screamt  saying ,”My hands are swollen, I’ve just got an  injection, my headache refuses to lessen such that I had to give up on you like every time and you are eating bananas.”

After a 6.5 second short stare she said, “Any woman will, if her 12 year old child tells her- 2x3 is 5 a day before the Maths paper.  You have told yourself that you aren’t good at Maths and have accepted it but I haven’t.”

I was about to bite the banana however I lost all hopes in life, no , not in me but my mother and I returned to my room. I decided to demonstrate the- “you are what you tell your mind” theory. I told my mind that I’m Pythagoras. I imagined a Triangle and just when  was about to figure out the triplet 2-3-5, I heard something ringing, however I tried to focus on the triplets.... now the sound was even stronger. I suddenly opened my eyes, just to check if it was my landline. Although my landline wasn’t ringing  I  decided to  pick up the phone. When I placed the receiver at my ear , TRING TRING  the phone rang…..

I was stumped; how come there was a TRING TRING sound being heard when I hadn’t dialed anyone’s number? So I kept the receiver down and again placed it near my ear… The TRING TRING sound was still being heard. This time I didn’t keep the phone down. I wanted to know who was on the other line and how come the phone had dialed a number on its own. I thought, maybe, this is how the phone ends up calling random people on its own and mom shouts at me for the never decreasing bills.  It was an unusually long dial tone. 

Then, it seems the receptionist picked the phone and instead of asking me , “Whom can I connect you to?” She said, “Ms Shamika  you are on hold for the next 7 seconds, 5…4…3…2..1…”

Then came a heavenly voice, “Shamika, first let me tell you that out of the vast population out there we only select 1 person in every one hundred years to communicate with, that too ,only when we find something really logical in their worry. Congratulations, you are the chosen one in the past 100 years.”

I was on top of the world, I didn’t care who they were because I had never felt so happy about not knowing anything ever before.  

I said,"Who are you and how am I talking to you without dialing your number?”

“I’m talking to you because you remembered me.”

“Ohh my GOD… You are GOD? My mom shall go mad at me if she comes to know that you spoke to me and not her, wait I’ll call her.”

“Ohh common, I’m not GOD but we function more or less like him. If I was, I would come in your dream. Well we do not have access to dreams because we do not have a face, in your words, what you rightly pointed at – THE SHAPE.  By the way,I’m INFINITY.”


“I’m the Number GOD.”

“What , so you should know that I hate you all…

He cut my sentence and said, “That is exactly why I’m talking to you.  See, I did tell you that we more or less function like GOD’s . Just as God sometimes talks to Atheists, people who do not believe in him; we too talk to people who don’t believe in us.”

“But I’m not the only one who hates you.”

“You’re right, but you are a loyal unbeliever. Others sometimes like us when they score well in Maths, however you have hated us even after you’ve scored well; which was in Grade 3 – Sem 3 and Grade 5 –Sem 2, the time when you’re mother had got a migraine attack and was hospitalized.”

“What else do you expect? She was on leave for 5 days and I had said, 10x1 is 0.”

“Yes, so coming to the point, we believe a loyal unbeliever could be a remarkable believer. However, no bread is free. We believe in business.”

“Yeah I know, numbers and business go hand in hand. Tell me what you want?”

Infinity cleared his throat and said, “Just like 0 , we want you to reshape the rest of the numbers. Remember, you had said, the moment these numbers appear before you, you think of how badly they’re shaped and fail to understand the solution of the problem. The entire digit questioning of yours –Why do we stretch only 4 fingers to show 4?  So we want you to design us in a way that you could understand.

Give us any shape, any design,any color.”

“Why don’t you ask the one who designed 0, my favourite number.”

“Actually, no one knows who designed us. We don’t know our womb”

“Awwww, I’m so sorry !!”

“Never mind”

“Infinity, are you serious? Because I’m on the job…. Give me a pen and a paper, I have thought of excellent shapes for you.”

“Shamika, no , we don’t need a paper, Just like the telephone we work through telepathy. Telepathy means reading one’s mind. So, as far as you can imagine those shapes, we can see them.”

“Cool Infinity, are you ready? So note down  ONE, TWO, THREE, FOUR, FIVE, SIX , SEVEN, EIGHT, NINE”

“Shamika, you are a genius….. You have given us not only eyes and other features but  different colored clothes as well. Thank You so much.”

“Actually, I should be thanking you…. WOW, now it would be much easier for me to understand Maths. I can now figure out everything I studied…. Suddenly it is all getting organized in my head. Everything is rising from the ashes, hahhaa. I think tomorrow’s paper is going to be really good.”

“Yeah, it will. All the best.”

“That reminds me to ask you, have you called me or has my phone called you? If the bill is too much…aaaa ..Are you from Maharashtra ? If you are from some other state, difficult times lie in the next month for me. Are you even from my country? How much would a call charge in the universe? The bill would be my last will…

“Hahahahhaha, check your next months bill, you’ll come to know.”

“By the way, I forgot to design you, Infinity?’’

“Shamika, I don’t really exist, I'm Infinity.”

Those were the last words I heard. That day onward, no, I never topped in Maths, but my Mom never had to hit me a day prior to my Maths exams. I'd like to believe, it wasn't just an imagination.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda


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