No Story Today

In the morning you are still sleepy. But it’s 49 minutes to 8. The fuckin power is back and since you don’t go to work any longer, you decide to sit in front of the screen and give it one more try. You close your eyes and shut down rationality. You let the hands strike the keys and pour out the flow in your mind. Your eyes are still shut but you trust that whatever your fingers are doing will not let you down. You harass the keys proper. Then when you are through, you paste the text on your ‘Posts’ page. You give it a title you think little about. Then you punch ‘Publish’. You check your watch; it is 7:56 a.m. Some four minutes to pleasure. You even resist the urge to go through and edit the post.

When you have tried very much to make a story.

As an amateur blogger, sometimes you go out there and find no story for your blog. You try to engage your muses, even for a miracle; your muses laugh at you. It thus pains you that the reader will today have no shit to bother them. It pains that today your reader will enjoy the cheapness of life and at the end go unpunished. This cannot be allowed. You therefore think of a way in. You think of a fake story.

You are now faking a twelfth story today. You are travelling aboard KQ510 and you are in the yellow rain clouds, which means that you guys are sailing. The yellow has covered your plane that you can’t see outside. It has also fissured into your plane. You curse that you can no longer see the Italian blonde that was on the adjacent seat. So you write about the clouds smelling like the smoke at Grandma’s. But a problem arises. You have never travelled by air and perhaps the clouds bit is the only thing you know about planes. Your story won’t be bought by a toddler and you throw it away.

Then you think, why don’t I write about Diego Maradona? Good idea. Google gives enough of his information. But you want to look like you were in Santiago interviewing him and you are so far doing good. You have asked very tough questions, most of which he couldn’t score home. Your mind goes dry and you cannot any longer imagine anything interesting. The interview therefore hits a rock 376 miles into the sea of words.

But your lazy reader must be tormented by millions of words, not just three hundred. They must know you can write. You conjure something about the Argentines sending a spy into the Samba camp. Here you need some solid facts.

Alejandro will feign Samba nationality and pick the name Flavio. So Flavio is an established doctor living in Ireland but whose native home is Sao Paulo. He’s back home on holiday and would like to watch the boys’ training session and hand over some motivation. He has one million shillings for them. He has a video camera hanging from his neck. Day one he talks to the coach and gives his promise. Day two he calls aside Faustino, the captain, and tells him about his errors on the pitch. Captain laments over delayed allowances. Doc Flavio vows to bring something for the team on 22/06/1999, which is the following day. Shit, this story sounds Kenyan!

You have even forgotten the name of the coach and you are telling Captain Fantastic that the AU is soon deploying you to Sierra Leone to fight Ebola. You have already cursed Uncle Sam thrice for inventing Ebola. You also curse your story and tell yourself that the reader can as well go to hell.

You look at your watch. Seventeen minutes of God past midnight. You imagine night-runners showing their shrivelled nudity to the darkness somewhere around Lake Victoria. You and them have something in common: you are both awake and at work. The only difference is that they are happy while you are a frustrated mass of a loser in the city. Don’t even pinch yourself – it won’t help.

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Somehow, you admire the story about night-runners. You imagine Oroya being their ringleader and commander. You ponder over this story for so long that you almost start writing it. Almost, until another more appealing idea comes.

It is one, midnight, right? Grandpa used to tell me stories of ghosts from the coast. Why don’t I terrorise the lazy reader with one?

The big ghost walks in the heart of the night, eating the intestines of everyone awake (you change it to ‘everyone asleep’). Everyone¬†Almost everyone is scared. You open a new window and start hitting the keyboard. “He ate raw blood and human intestines, roamed the night and walked without noise. Every rainy night, his diet was thirty three intestines of teenage girls and two pots of blood from old men who still combed their beards….”

The lights go off.

Fwakni! You had not saved the work. And fwakni, the ghosts! You immediately become scared in the dark, wondering whether your beard is combed. The house is scaring silent! You curse the power company. You curse the rain. You curse your neighbours for being asleep when important literary issues are being addressed. You curse the ass of your reader and swear you will revenge. And that’s how sleep finds you.

In the morning you are still sleepy. But it’s 49 minutes to 8. The fuckin power is back and since you don’t go to work any longer, you decide to sit in front of the screen and give it one more try. You close your eyes and shut down rationality. You let the hands strike the keys and pour out the flow in your mind. Your eyes are still shut but you trust that whatever your fingers are doing will not let you down. You harass the keys proper. Then when you are through, you paste the text on your ‘Posts’ page. You give it a title you think little about. Then you punch ‘Publish’. You check your watch; it is 7:56 a.m. Some four minutes to pleasure. You even resist the urge to go through and edit the post.

And as you go back to sleep, you pray that your reader is still alive, and that they find the work very terrible and very tormenting. And you start thinking of another story, perhaps about the eternal punishment to those who do nonsense on the web.

Reply and run away.