Monday, April 9, 2007

Ackley Avatars

He kept standing there. He was exactly the kind of guy that wouldn't get out of your light when you asked him to. He'd do it, finally, but it took him a lot longer if you asked him to. 'What the hellya reading?' he said.
'Goddam book'.
He shoved my book back with his hand so that he could see the name of it. 'Any good?' he said.
'This sentence I am reading is terrific'. I can be quite sarcastic when I am in the mood. He didn't get it, though. He started walking around the room again, picking up all my personal stuff, and Stradlater's. Finally, I put my book down on the floor. You couldn't read anything with a guy like Ackley around. It was impossible.

I came across this piece in a book called 'The Catcher in The Rye' yesterday in the night. It is the narrative of a rebellious young boy living in a residential high school. This scene reminded me such vividly of my college days. It was identical then. There were some people(refered to as 'he' henceforth) who were living example of Ackley. He used to march into the room in much the same way and if he finds you studying something earnestly he will get pissed or worried, not sure what. He will come right next to your desk and keep standing there, looking attentively and trying to figure out what are you studying. Arey, what the heck man, I am not solving some tremendous problem or inventing some brilliant formula. I am not doing anything which people haven't done before here or are never expected to do. But, such thoughts are far removed from him. He is really hooked, he is thinking "Oh God, what is this?I better find out. "My brother, if you want to know, ask, please ask I will bare it all and then please move. I am obviously getting disturbed. "But, as its written above I put my book down on the floor. You couldn't read anything with a guy like like him around. It was impossible. ;)

P. S. -The author (Joseph Salinger) has made this boy(Holden) lament so much so bluntly in this book, that it finds a place in the '100 most controversial books of the 20th century' list. By the way, this book is also there in the '100 top books of the 20th century list'. To top it all, it is included in the curriculum of many schools throughout US. I am not saying its a bad book and all, but there is such blatantly vitriolic material in it that it beats me to no end that how this book came to be read aloud in the classrooms.


G. said...

'he' usually has no intention of doing something but seeing someone do something usually provokes and tingles him in the weirdest of ways.

i ought to come with a new word for this feeling. it is not jealousy but might seem like it. it is not stupidity but might seem like it. it is not intended pun but he might make it seem like it.

i used to be him before the start of my exams and now i feel that it probably hurt my ego to see some1 do the right thing wich i should be doing but wont just to prove that i-dont-need-that-kinda-stuff.

this feeling is similar to what is felt when one is reprimanded by a colleague and is differeent from that when scolded by a superior.

tell me if i am wrong.

P.S. i'll read ur blogs.

Anand said...

Yes,it ain't jealousy..its a sense of insecurity..But i knew better than being the 'he'..I decided I will rather go down the barell than be the 'he'
But most take the easy way out,they try to be th 'he'...
Phew!forget it :) enjoy