He sat in the corner, curled up in a fetal position, looking exceptionally sad. The poor thing always looked sad and withdrawn but this time it was at an alarming level that it was very hard to dismiss. Actually, in retrospect, I think he made a point of making me feel obliged to ask, knowing fully well that if I could deal with the guilt of ignoring such a carefully designed scene, my curiosity would spiral out of control. And so it happened…
Me: Hey, why the long face?
Tubby [with a feeble voice]: I’m bored
Me: is that it? Well, go check out the memory closet, knock yourself out. Check 1993, that was an interesting year.
Tubby: No, thank you. The boredom I’m suffering isn’t something your third grade memories can cure.
Me [sitting up straight and assuming a more serious look]: What’s this about? This isn’t just boredom, come on, tell me.
Tubby: Well, I’m not sure you’d understand
Me: I can’t promise you that but at least Ii can try to
Tubby: Okay… I’ve been… feeling… as of late… a little bit…
Me: hahahaha Oh good old Tubby! You’ve gone soft
Tubby: See? You’re making fun of me. I shouldn’t have told you
Me: Oh no, sorry. You feel lonely, that’s totally understandable. Now, how can I help you?
Tubby: Well, maybe if you can get me some company…
Me: Company? What am I doing here?
Tubby: Not you. You’re a human, always busy with your human stuff. I live inside your head alone. I need someone of my own kind… A girl
Me: Tubby you realize that at your astronomical age asking for a girl makes you a pedofile
Tubby: Oh shucks! A woman… and I promise I’ll be good to her. I’ll spoil her, and cherish her and…
Me: Hold on there. Tubby, I’m sure millions of women would kill to fill such a coveted position. I mean, it’s you, a 100+ year-old man with white exploding hair receding to the sides of your head and the cutest gaps between every other tooth… yeah, that should be a piece of cake, I’ll just snap my fingers and your fairy princess will be her
Tubby: When have you become so shallow? I know I’m not exactly a sight for the sore eyes but ugly people need love too. I don’t care how old is she or how she looks, she can’t complain about me being a beast if she wasn’t a beauty herself. Haven’t you seen Shrek?
Me: Well, Tubby, it’s just that I’m not sure she will deserve you. What if she breaks your heart? I don’t have the time or the energy to nurse your wounds
Tubby: Why would she? She will be a figment of your imagination, just like me, you can control here
Me: No, forget it, I won’t have two love birds singing around inside my head. I have more important things to focus on
Tubby: Oh I get it. You’re jealous
Me: What? You worthless piece of rubbish, how dare you? Why on earth would I be jealous of you?
Tubby: Because I’m capable of human feelings that you’re not capable of
Me: You’re not even human
Tubby: My point exactly
Me: you better season your words mister because you might have to eat them later on. I’m perfectly capable of these whatever human feelings you’re talking about. As a matter of fact I have abundant amounts of love and what not that I don’t know what to do with, honestly I can just lend you some of that to solve your problem
Tubby: Really? Define “love”
Me: Well, it’s too general a concept…
Tubby: No, the specific meaning for which I’m asking you to find me company
Me: Okay, let’s see… It’s a condition characterized by the singling out a human being out of the whole earth population that suddenly you worry about that person and you crave their attention, it becomes like oxygen you know except you don’t want to share it with everyone. It’s also being aware of that person’s special qualities as well as their needs and being sensitive to them, so it’s not just what they say about butterflies and all these stupid hormonal side effects. It’s that feeling that everything you do or say is connected one way or another to that particular someone. Of course that’s the theoretical part to it, because it is not just a feelings or a myriad of feelings, it’s also the set of actions based on those feelings, like respecting the other person, making compromises, trying to make each other happy, you know. You can’t say you love someone if you ridicule them at every chance you get or shout at them day and night. Now, if reciprocated this condition could lead to that certain someone becoming the only one of their kind, they seem almost indispensable. But of course it only feels like it because nobody is indispensable.
Tubby: God! That felt like you were reading from an encyclopedia. What are you, a robot?
Me: Shut up, you wouldn’t give such an answer in a million years you dim-wit
Tubby: of course, because it’s not a mathematical equation.
Me: Well, maybe it is. You see, that’s why I can’t help you fulfill your wish, because I can define it but I can’t reproduce that feeling, I don’t know how it feels, the whole reciprocated fulfilling thing. And there’s no shame in it, it’s perfectly okay, not everyone will have that and not everyone is worthy of it, no? However, I have a good suggestion for you
Tubby [discouraged]: What?
Me: Go to sleep and maybe you’ll dream about it. I mean, I was reading that dreams are wish fulfillments, even the dreams that distress you, they fulfill a wish one way or another. Freud believed that and I tend to agree with him on that regard, I just hope that wasn’t his “medicinal” cocaine speaking
Tubby: you mean even when I dream about being chased by a bear?
Me: Yeah. Even the dream I had two days ago about me being accused of murdering a Syrian actor, who’s already dead by the way, and my father wanting to turn me in to the police and then me planning to escape but not before writing a book about that actor. It was a horrible dream but when I analyzed it I found that it was fulfilling a certain wish I had.
Tubby: the wish to kill an already dead Syrian actor?
Me: Of course not, silly! Dreams can be “disguised” fulfillment of “suppressed” wishes. It meant something to me and it’s none of your business.
Tubby: Even if I dream about it, the feeling of fulfillment will evaporate as soon as I wake up and I will feel even worse
Me: yeah… I really wish I can help you buddy but… please, stop this nonsense. What happened to our interesting conversations?
Don’t you disappear on me…