Little by little, we all grew up. The school days were too much fun, yet the stepping stone into the rat race. Slowly, the rules of the combat were injected inside us : numbers, grades mattered more than drawings, mumblings, games. Come college, reputation and image started creeping their heads out. No matter how you were, you had to put up an image.
There is an idea of a Patrick Bateman ~ not the real self.
College had us expressing in myriads of ways, but in ways it was time for us to carry forward our batons. Four years had a lot of things manifested in me. Probably the best and the worst years of my life, period. But the innocence inside me was getting a hard armour built around it. Such was the power of humiliation that it had transformed a shy creature like me into a defiant snob.
Somehow I could never let go of my past. My nickname has been a prime example of how people always saw features before nature, body before demeanour. For every single one of the college folks (barring very few), I will always be Big Show. That is what they know me by. They never cared to know who I was underneath.
That I had a real name.
Even a couple of days ago I heard from someone that one of my college buddies was referring to me by that name, yet with all his memory he could not recall my real name. It used to hurt before, all their ‘fat’ jokes, all their mockings. But I am who I am. It doesn’t hurt anymore.
I am graced with people who understand me and accept me as I am. I will always be grateful to those few.
Maybe Big Show was my anonymity – the dichotomy fulfilled in the most unusual of ways. I was popular, yet anonymous.
Isn’t this what I always wanted?
The First Rain, by Yehuda Amichai
The first rain reminds me
Of the rising summer dust.
The rain doesn’t remember the rain of yesteryear.
A year is a trained beast with no memories.
Soon you will again wear your harnesses,
Beautiful and embroidered, to hold
Sheer stockings: you
Mare and harnesser in one body.
The white panic of soft flesh
In the panic of a sudden vision
Of ancient saints.