Meeting Mr Koreana in the museum

October 16, 2015

For the woman who is different from all other all women. It is not unusual. Not at all, for her to regard an act no matter how well conceived to resemble a pinball bounced from one thing to another, to go up, down only to be flipped up again, slide, run against, jostle and bumped only to be repeated all over again.

As only a woman who has acquired the unusual habit of regarding life in this strange manner to even see it prosaically without even the slightest compulsion to question why the sum of all life could be nothing other than a series of random events at play could be drawn inexorably to such an unusual person like Mr Koreana – for the woman who was different from all other women, only such a man like Her dearest Mr Koreana was capable to harboring the seemingly ridiculous idea that a person heading in a planned direction could ever really reach it – as somewhere in that causal chain, chance has ever prerogative to suddenly appear like one of the many invisible lines that only the girl who is different from all other girls can sense and intercept that planned trajectory…only for it to take a sharp turn in mid-course, pause, drift and end up in a place quite different from the one it was supposed to reach.

As the girl walked into the museum, she saw Mr Koreana sitting on a bench before a painting…it looked like an abstraction of sorts. The type that struck her as mangled…jumbled…random – what struck her most intensely then was the acuteness of how she was suddenly aware of how this desolate figure who seemed to be there and yet somewhere else – was so different from all others who walked indolently around each exhibit. For as long as she looked on, she couldn’t but help resist the very idea, these curious wanderers were merely like protagonists who were following a well choreographed script. There was a sense of nihilism about the these people who flitted by Mr Koreana – as if only he was the true protagonist while the rest were merely there as props to lend the scene a patina of reality like in movie set. While this observation may seem anything but particularly new to the girl who is different from all other girls – this was the one indelible feature that drew her to Mr Koreana.

Standing behind him from a distance – he was indeed there…part of the world even, and yet at the same time there was a detached quality of inaccessible about him – it wasn’t his demeanor of mild interest in what hung before him. Neither was it the curious manner in which he had the habit of turning his head to one side from time, as if to make out a shape or pattern. For the woman who was different from all other women, only she could sense a hidden door that nestled deep within Mr Koreana at that moment, that could never be penetrated, a mysterious center of hiddenness that from time to time she merely caught a glimpse of – like the moment when he told her, ‘I trade coffee.’ Or how he had suddenly stopped on one of their unusual silent nocturnal walks that seemed to go nowhere, yet everywhere at the same time only to look at a building as if conjuring some distant thought stirred up by the past.

That was the moment when the woman who is different all women was suddenly filled by an inexplicable compulsion to participate in that mystery that was Mr Koreana – the man who knew her so well. But as he turned to look at her just then, suddenly like the wind that had snatched away a thought and ripped it into a thousand pieces – she was filled with the realization that one could never really know such a man…not really. One could perhaps approximate…postulate…draw lines only to lead to dead ends….there were simply too many lines that ran thru this man and in that moment she felt naked before him. As if he knew what she was thinking.

It was as if he knew what streaked thru her mind like a solitary meteorite crisscrossing the night sky.

During dinner Mr Koreana spoke nothing whatsoever about the future….past only the present. Though he did mentioned just once, ‘I trade coffee.’ It wasn’t a statement, not to the woman who was different from all other women – rather the words rolled deliberately…slowly…like amber from ancient wood to emphasis that he was indeed very much of the world that she knew he had was an exile. She liked the way he spoke – it differed markedly from the same everydayness conversations of her friends, colleagues and acquaintances, whose names she hardly remembered. Only because of her acute realization she could be nothing but different and this compelled her to at least appear to remain congenial…friendly…and the opposite of different..that’s how girls who are different get by…she even made it a point to get accustomed to the litany of conversation for conversation sake. During her office lunch breaks in the luncheonette, they had talked about sometime that always ended as nothing, and now, when the woman who was different from all other women was with her dearest Mr Koreana all that she could be reminded of was the the hopelessness of that misguided passion to be same like everyone else and to even relish her difference – as all other conversations she had ever once experienced could never once compared to the man who never once spoke about the past or future….only the present truly mattered to Mr Koreana and it was this characteristic about him that truly validated and even approved of her condition which she had always seen as an affliction, her difference.

Its hard to say for certain what goes thru a woman’s mind especially a woman who is different from all other women who spends the evening dinning with a man who trade in coffee…harder even to fathom whether perhaps she wore lipstick, mascara and an evening dress that she had bought on a moment of impulse…only to look at herself with a mixture of curiosity and apprehension in the mirror and murmur…I am not doing this for him…I am not! only to wonder thru out that dinner that seemed to stretch on for eternity that perhaps it was really only all for her dearest Mr Koreana….thereby proving without a shadow of doubt he was most certainly the only man who had the power to intercept her life line and stop it dead in it’s tracks by holding time in the way only the woman who was different from all other suddenly realized that she could perhaps be like others as well…..

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