Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Maybe

‘Maybe’ is a fascinating word.

In fact, I’ll go as far as to say ‘maybe’ just may-fucking-be the second
most interesting word after, well, ‘fuck’.

‘Maybe’ is better than ‘or’, and not because it’s three letters or a syllable heavier.
Come to think of it, ‘or’ is barely a word. Actually, it’s barely a sound, much like
a half-swallowed hiccup. Fundamentally, ‘or’ is dependent on the two choices
it needs to fit snugly between; in or out, soup or salad, your place or mine.
‘Maybe’, on the other hand, is a brand new choice altogether.

‘Maybe’ is shorter and sweeter than its overtly sophisticated cousin ‘perhaps’.
Perhaps, you’d disagree. See what I mean? ‘Maybe’ is easy on the tongue,
you can drop it at will, like a hydrogen bomb, which brings me to my next point.

Wielded well, ‘maybe’ is a potent weapon in the power hungry control-freak’s
(you, if you’re wondering) arsenal. Allow me to illustrate.

--

‘Do you love me?’

‘Yes.’

‘That was easy.’

‘Yes’ is acknowledgement, and although it presents the subject with success,
the feeling is short-lived. It’s precisely one chest thump, two fist bumps, three calls,
four social media posts or five eventful nights long. You can’t keep replaying
a single glorious instant for an eternity, can you?

Outcome: Power forfeited.

--

‘Do you love me?’

‘No.’

‘Bite me.’

‘No’ is outright rejection, a slap in the face, it’ll make the subject reel momentarily
but recover nonetheless. It’s a wake-up call, and some of us need more than one.
It puts the universe into perspective, and the jilted on an entirely disconnected
intellectual plane.

Outcome: Subject forfeited.

--

‘Do you love me?’

‘Maybe.’

‘What? How? Why? Okay.’

‘Maybe’ feeds both curiosity and hope in the precise measure required to place
the aggressor in a position of power. Even though the odds of approval and rejection
stand equally divided, it is human nature to disregard the latter. After all, hope sells
harder than sex ever did. And, while a part of the subject’s mind devotes itself to
optimism-laced flights of fancy, another dissects the response, probing desperately
for arguments that aggravate the former.

Simply put, when blind hope gets boring, one turns to curiosity to discover worthy
justification. A valid justification strengthens hope and the cycle completes its first,
but far from final, revolution.

Outcome: Power and subject retained.

--

‘Maybe’ is the grey in a world of black and white. It is the convenient middle path
between ‘Yes’ and ‘No’. Do I sense Buddha frowning? ‘Maybe’ is nonchalant,
noncommittal, nonconformist even. It has a certain air of suspense working for it.
It’s Bond-like, yet catty. It’s a veiled insult, yet sometimes pretty darn straight.
It’s absolute, yet throws open a world of countless probabilities and analyses.
It’s the answer to the question you weren’t seeking an answer to. It keeps you on
the prowl and your victims on their toes.

‘Maybe’ is a drug. Use it before you lose it, because you’re eventually going
to lose it anyway.

Well, maybe.

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Yes

It was quite simple, really.

If you said ‘Yes’, I’d take your dog on a walk so you could sneak in an hour of sleep,
and get back in time to watch the sight of your eyes adjusting to the light as the first
sip of freshly brewed tea kissed your lips. I’d make you breakfast.

If you said ‘Yes’, I’d ride you to work, buy you a croissant to go, even though
I secretly know you prefer muffins but are watching your sugar intake. I’d pick up
your dry cleaning, I’d offer to drop you home and hang on to every word
you said along the way.

I’d like every status update you put up just to let you know I read it. I’d make you
put up status updates just so I could like them.

I’d cover your head when it rained, wrap my jacket around you when it was cold,
hold your hand when we crossed the street, hold your hand as we weaved through
a crowd, hold your hand for no reason whatsoever and squeeze it gently
before letting go.

I’d take you to exhibitions, plays, films, festivals, concerts and carnivals.
I’d probably take you shopping. No, I would take you shopping.

I’d stay by your side when you were sick, make sure you took your medication
on time, never on an empty stomach, and take you to the doctor
if your condition worsened. I’d nurse you back to health even though it meant
I could fall ill the moment you recovered.

I’d write you a poem and ten songs to go with it. I’d sing you those songs
on days you needed to be told how beautiful you are. 

If you said ‘Yes’, I’d revel in your success, brush away your failures, push you
to try harder and give you a million reasons to refrain from entertaining the thought
of giving up. I’d be a partner to your crimes, an audience to your expression,
and the wall you often crave between you and the world.  

If you said ‘Yes’, I would do all of this and so much more, in the right amount
of moderation, so you never felt you owed me anything but always had just cause
to light up that smile. I would write a thesis about that smile.

But, you never said ‘Yes’. 

Because, I never asked.