Who were you before you started ‘working for a living’? What were your likes or dislikes? These questions bring out the true horrors of reality that we are all part of. I recollect my own childhood in third person. I caught dragonflies, tied a string to their tails and let them fly with the other end of the string in my hands. Eventually, they’d stop flying and crash kamikaze at my feet, their murderer, their 10-year-old God. Little did He know that 10 years down the line, He would find himself on the flying end of the string and that His God on the other end of the string would be the demons of His creation.

Before it was my turn to place myself in the pocket of the slingshot of career and destruction, my biggest passion was Time. Oh, it was so dear to me, my first love. I would do anything for her and anything with her. She treated me fairly; she treated me well and spoke to me of no heaven or hell. She healed me, cleansed me, spoilt me, tempted me and truly made the best of me. On my first day of work, the first thing I lost was her, Time. I cheated on her with a misplaced dream, betrayed her and she never came back.

With passion gone, the next to go was my misplaced dream. After my romantic entanglement with Time came to a tragic end, over the next few days I flirted with my misplaced dream. I was never sure about her, I had known of her promiscuous past. She had destroyed many before me, but then she was all I had left. Slowly, the flirtations turned serious and there I was, love struck, all over again. I knew this wouldn’t end well, but ignored all intuition and signs. For a while, she tempted me to be the best of myself. A few years passed and I began to feel that this was meant to be, until her demands turned outrageous. No matter what I did, it wasn’t enough. She got bigger, more ugly and eventually she died of a cancer that was I.

Now you’d think that without Time and a misplaced dream, what does a man have left to live for? As it turns out, plenty! After I lost my misplaced dream, I felt relieved. I was going to stay away from obsessions for a while. It was time for a distraction. I needed a hobby, something to develop my own set of skills. The world had started networking on a surreal platform, I lost myself in this network and in this network I found a nameless face that introduced me to the myth of work-life balance. I was transfixed with this idea; I knew this was my way out, my true calling. So I picked up my briefcase on one hand, and dangled my camera and pen in the other. I felt so liberated without realizing that with both hands tied, I was in bondage of my own creation. Then she came, the dominatrix, Will Power. She was the most exciting of them all, so far. She gave reason to temptation, logic to chaos and thrill to pain. Most of all, she showed me that with both hands tied, anything is possible. She led the way into my first big date with destruction. Before I knew it, I was promoted to the role of a new demon. This is where I started to transform into something I hadn’t foreseen or wished for. Will Power just left one day, without notice. I think she got tired of my arrogance and newfound addiction for self-preservation, I’ll never know for sure. Today, I miss her.

At the peak of my downfall, my career, I turned towards humans for rehabilitation and celebration. This was the most awkward interaction of my life for they were not human anymore. They were just consumers and they consumed whatever came their way. They had exchanged decency for different drugs, drugs for different poisons. Their opinions came out of advertisements and ideologies regurgitated. They seemed to know all the answers, they seemed to care but so bloodthirsty, they’d never share. Celebrations would continue late into the night until it turned to carnage. They dug their canines deep into whatever was left of me, and bit out huge chunks off my sanity. Consumers are most dangerous, most evil, and most unhygienic and I became one of them.

At this point of time, I have two things that remain, a prison schedule and a payday. Fellow consumers tell me that I need to be grateful for I have the power to purchase, the freedom to loathe and a right to dream the improbable. Although, every day I laugh aimlessly with my pack of rabid hyenas, gobble up the death served on my plate and drink the wine juiced from despair, I know what I have lost and I know that I signed my soul to my own demons the day I signed my first offer letter.

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