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The JoJo Chronicles

January 22, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 127


The pebble inside the shoe...the left one throbbing like a thorn to a throne, under his left foot toes. Jojo stamped his feet casually, hoping the pebble would slide down the side. Pebble was static. Wish he just could reach out and yank out his shoes and set his toes free. Yet he was crammed in a bus full of strangers, waiting impatiently for their respective stops. Its not as if they have been packed like sardines like where he came from, where one is more worried about the rampant pick pockets than the duration of the trip. The stink, the constant crushing of someone's boots that leave your shoes look like crushed eggs, the overwhelming smell of sweat and dirt. And of course the noise, man the noise at times it is more entertaining than a radio. Still there are little things that make any journey so unbearable, like the pebble that is ping ponging around his toes every time he moved. In a vain attempt he crossed his right feet and pressed the other on the heels to ease the pressure of his feet. The pebble rolled down like a pinball and planted itself right under the ball of his feet. Beautiful, the day can't get no better than that. He contemplated if he just take his shoes off and pluck the thing out once and for all. But then the day had not begun his way....

Like a good friend of his once said about a particular Friday " I think I know this day, some Tuesday a couple of years ago. A messed up day! i tell you my friend...the messing up kept getting worse and worse by the hour, so am staying inside and let this one roll by, see ya tomorrow!" It was not what he said, rather the way he said with a deadly conviction that convinced Jojo, maybe it was possible. He had the same feeling today, yet it was a defining moment in his career, one he would not miss even if it came on a rerun of his worst day.

With the mental preparation taking its toll and his anxiety and fear of another disappointment conjuring his imagination with scene after scene probable events of the fateful day, he was wide awake for most of the night. On those nights his consciousness mysteriously gives in to the cousin of death at around 3:14. There was something weird about that. How many times had he glanced at the hour just before he drifted away and it was exactly 3:14. Maybe it was nothing to get worked over, could just be his mental state snoozing time. He had been tempted once or twice check the verses 3:14 in every gospel of the bible to get some answers, but then the answers might bring more questions and he might end up sleeping around 4:14 and the quest might go on and on....

The alarm went off at 7. Funny how it always startled him, every time! Still his body remained limp. He reset the alarm for ten more minutes and closed his eyes in a mere attempt to crawl back to sleep. Ten minutes passed by. Surprisingly he was in a deep sleep, when the song chant down Babylon, set as the ring tone to the alarm, sprang him back to the living in the Babylon. He could barely open his eyes. Sometimes he wondered if he had been with the dead when he was asleep. Instead of feeling fresh after a good rest, his body woke up depleted and stiff no matter how long he slept.

Jojo thought about the things he would be doing with the dead after he had snoozed the alarm. The love making would be a bone to bone affair; he quickly brushed of the grotesque bony graphics, as he even never liked skinny chicks in real life. He desired a little flesh here and there, not too chubby though, for a pleasurable copulation. He ran a mental top ten list of the women who quenched his ever insatiable thrust. Funny though, how his memory placed every detail of every encounter immaculately, while he is yet to memorize the name of the street he had moved in, a couple of weeks ago. It baffled him why they always had to name streets with long weird names....

He drifted away from the sexy subject in hand, and began analyzing how his memory had really deteriorated in recent years. It has got to a point where he has begun to admire his ability to just forget things. He figured ' maybe it was a skill. Or rather a power; the power to forget!' that sounds catchy, who said it was that easy to forget. When one forgets, one is relieving some much needed space in ones memory for the incoming rush of data. The memory is thus forced to stash aside trivial and redundant matters, to make way for what is important. Maybe his, filters out more data than others, saving some much needed space for something important yet to happen, sometime in the future' he concluded buoyantly while still lying lazily in on his back.

Speaking of forgetting he realized the bus to town left at 10 to 8. He reached for his phone and wearily looked at the time. It was already 7:35. Jojo could not believe it. He sprang into action and rushed to the bathroom. He had to make up his mind. there was just not enough time, so he had to cut some of his early morning routines. ' think, think fast' he rushed himself and decided to take a quick shower. He let the faucet to run, the water was really cold. He knew he had to multitask the time. He had to cleanse his bowl otherwise he felt heavy the whole day.

Jojo sweating in labor realized he was shading precious minutes ' too much rice would do that to you' he exclaimed with the lost pop. He flushed and jumped towards the shower. For some strange reason a wet towel lying flat on the floor snarled and entangled his feet, he could swear the thing came to life like the 'snakes on the plane'. Jojo lost his bearing and bang he went down face flat, knocking down every bottle and plastic in that bathroom of a closet. He was now wide awake. No time to first aid! He jumped in the shower, which was still unexplainably cold. Cussing and trembling he was in and out in not more than a minute. He checked the time, 7:42. No time for breakfast.

He put on the same light blue jeans he had been wearing for the past week. Ruffled through the pile of cloth on the stool next to his bed and picked a clean white t-shirt and a blue sweater. There was no clean socks, he kneeled down and swiped his hands under the bed in search of a pair from the dozen worn discarded bunch. He fished a pair. Though they don't seem to match, who cares thought Jojo. As he put them on he realized the left one had a big hole in the front. His big toe stuck out like the tongue of an annoying idiot kid in the neighborhood. He tried to tuck in his protruding toe by pulling the sock to the front and ended up tearing the over worn sock from behind. Jojo sighed heavily in morning rage and put on his black boots and his thick black bubble jacket. It will be freezing cold they had predicted in the news.

Jojo once again checked the time 7:44. Thank God the bus stop is just 30 seconds away from his doorstep. With a quick mental calculation, he figured he had a minute left to search for something to fill the empty belly. He strode past his tiny apartment towards the fridge. Wow what was he expecting anyway, apart from one fat tomato sitting pretty in the middle of the centre tray, the fridge looked so bright and spacious. He stuck his head in for closer inspection of anything edible. Half empty ketchup bottle, a quarter of a discolored onion, a tiny opened can of concentrated tomato paste, a pair of rotting potatoes and vinegar jar. He gave up, not even the hells kitchen guy could make something out of those. Typical lazy bachelor's fridge, he had no idea why they make them so big anyway. The last time that fridge had been stuffed beyond its capacity was when he had a party some time ago; emptied by the end of the night.

He raced outside just on time. He had to get across town and switch busses to the other end, if he was to make his appointment on time. As he was about to climb the bus he felt a tingle in his left toes. It was cold day in Tromsø. Wish he had smoked one cigarette before he got on the bus, but then he chain smoked the night away, lost in the chain of thoughts.

Jojo despised the morning buses. They were often full with students and all the rest heading for work. With all the seats occupied, he had no choice but to stand in the middle of the bus, hanging and swinging by the flap, trying not to bump hard on anyone. He hated that spot. It made him feel vulnerable, like a caged bird. Especially in those days where he wished just to stay invisible and get through the day unnoticed. Instead one is stuck in the middle of a crowd and nothing to stare the time away with; all the outside vision blocked, the eyes scour the crowd helplessly. You look in every direction and can't find a spot where none would stare back. He would not mind staring back but it just too exhausting and so annoying. Its just involves a lot of work for a guy on an empty stomach and nicotine cravings.

Besides the stare or a quick glance is often followed by thoughts about the person, be it positive or not. Then you got to look back cautiously, to be certain of ones first impression. Thereafter one takes a second or two to asses the situation before making a conclusion regarding the intention behind the stare. Finally one has to think of a proper reaction. Ignore or stare back. Uffff it is just too exhausting! When he was in a god mood or if the eyes were set upon a beautiful woman, Jojo had no complaints. But when ones mind is wandering about, a glare is the last thing one needs! Can't avoid every stare though, that would take away something out of his manhood; some just need to be stared back. Otherwise one resorts to the awkward moments. Pretending to see through or beyond someone as if lost in ones thought, still trying ones best not to blink and strain the mind to wander away fast. Or at times you look down and fumble through your pockets and play with whatever gadget you posses; still one could feel the stare. Or worse look away and still you can see their reflection on the side glass. 'It is just truly excruciating and consuming manner, some of us had to put ourselves through, for a harmless stare' pondered Jojo, while the tiny pebble was starting to get really annoying down at his feet. He wiggled his toes in an attempt to maneuver the pebble somewhere less uncomfortable. The pebble did not budge!

He looked down at his battered left shoe in dismay. The longer he glared at it the more compressed the depressive world got around him. In fact the whole left shoe situation epitomized his entire existence, Jojo deducted. The cheep worn out Chinese boot was more of an excuse for his fate in life, what stood beyond was all the irrelevant distraction, the world they call it. Jojo felt like he was the crammed left foot, with barely a room to breathe let alone toss and turn. The filthy rug of a sock, blindfolding and gagging him as if set for another round of torture,was the system man handling him. Asphyxiating and bound Jojos only hope came from the glint of light that occasionally made it through the lace punctures and the holes in the socks. Stationed and languishing inside the shoe, like an inmate inside a solitary confinement, the best one can hope for is a better shoe. More breathing space, though one still gets to serve the time, confined. Claustrophobia is an alien thought, the foot had been institutionalized by the shoe system. The occasional freedom to wander free and be with his fellow footy leaves it nothing but vulnerable. It is much safer inside. The world is a dangerous place!

The foot had been subjected to the seasonal flooding, the freezing cold, the numbing drift, the searing heat, the occasional knock and pressure, the stench and stink of its dark cell. Those are occupational hazards, he can deal with! What works his nerve was the tiny pebble making what's little comfort left, a living hell. Worse only the foot knows and feels the discomfort. The constant tingle of a tiny stone feels as big a hurdle as the rock of the dome, in every stride. The pebble stood for every road block that had hindered his stride in life. The jealous friends, the greedy tenants, the annoying x's, the nosy neighbors, the boring teachers, the demanding bosses were all pebbles that multiply your existing problems. All work tirelessly to mess up your day. Man at times they even come in pairs, working every corner of your nerves like synchronized swimmers.

He has had it with the pebbles, all of them. he shook his head in dismay. Then it hit him ' you can get rid of the pebble. Unless it was a case of atonement, you can live a pebble free life'. Hell ya all it takes is a stand! got to root them pebbles out one by one. And it begins with this one!' What a revelation! Jojo felt real good about himself already. The ever observant Jojo scanned the occupants of the bus one by one. There were 12 of them stranded in the middle of the bus. three elderly white woman, one Indian looking man in his late 30's, a father and a mixed heritage son, one gorgeous young blonde, two heavily built white guys, a Kurdish youngster and a handsome fat blonde in her mid 40's. They were all lost in their thoughts, definitely about them pebbles.

He weighed his options; take off his shoes and get rid of that pebble before it multiples like a bacteria or something or wait till he gets to his stop. ' if I wait then I am letting the pebble win. Can't let that happen, got to take a stand!' he concluded.

With one swift motion he bent down and yanked his left shoes. With such venom Jojo flipped the shoe upside down and shook it around like he never shook before. He could swear the pebble dropped like a nickel. So tiny yet so mean! Satisfied that he did not let it ruin his day, put on his shoes with a grin and stood upright to a stunned audience! Some with disgust others with utter surprise, parted away from him, like the red sea. 'Jojo don't care mon'! the shocking artistic foot show plus the stench of his Chinese boots lingering thick in the air, might had been repulsive for some, yet for Jojo it was the beautiful sight and smell of freedom! 'only who feels it, knows it' wise men have said.

Source: EzineArticles
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Jojo Chronicles


Jojo And The Pebble


Poor Jojo


Tiny Pebble

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