One day I was standing by the window gazing vacantly and smoking at the lunch break at work, when a colleague came and stood by me without me noticing her. I was looking out blankly and she was, probably, looking at my look, or the way I looked. Then out of sudden she asked me in a decisive and assuring tone: “Are you existentialist Sami?” I was shocked and startled for that direct unexpected questions and remembered the “parties” of interrogation they held on me in jail.
What? Existentialist? What’s that? And I was really astonished not only from the question but from the questioning person whom I never thought she knows (and I was right) anything of Sartre or Fanon.
What? Existentialist? Why the hell I am always taken to be –ist?
“You are communist, and we know that” roared the interrogator suddenly (actually not one but three interrogators to complete the “party”) which is part of their job to surprise you with new dimentions that you have never heard of!!!
“What? Existentialist?” and I, realizing that she is not an interrogator, burst in a sudden hysteric laugh. “why do you think I am ‘existentialis’” I got the courrage to ask in a defensive way as if facing a mean interrogator in a decisive time of a “session”. “No, but really just asking. I mean the way you think, the way you talk, they way you contemplate dreamingly.” She explained apologetically “Is all that (existentialism) in me?” I asked in a sarcastic but polite way. “I don’t know but just asking!!”
‘why the hell you ask’ I thought feeling the blood dripping on my side cheek. “I am the one to ask here, son of a bitch!” shouted the interrogator while his two mates were watching angrily as if echoing his tone. One of them seemed to be taking initial training on me, such a little “academician” probably studying my case of a “strong headed” person, or probably having a seminar of “crises management”!!!!…. I looked at him, at them actually, and took my final decision (I am not going to talk, even after death)
Existentialist!!! Communist!!! Atheist!!! Tribalist!! Why the hell you ask, you little ignorant lady. Does it matter for you if I am existentialist or f-k-ist?
So, I am existential-IST, sweet lady!!!!
“What does it mean to be existentialist dear?” I asked her in a defensive retaliation for her unexpected, perplexing and torturing question.
“I don’t know exactly, but it means to believe that you exist.”
‘The hell, I do exist. I am still not driven crazy.” I thought to myself. ‘I do feel the blood bruising over my side face.’ Silence! Silence… silence is my only weapon in this battle. Patience!! Who in Satan sake can be patient wile a very “academician” is holding his experiment on him, on his very body, very mind, on his ability to hold a “sustainable” coordination between his mind and body!!! Can an existentialist do?
“Get up, you dirty athe-IST” and he was looking at me in a clear irritation. ‘you mustn’t be irritated, dear interrogator. Irritation is the first step for falling’ I thought to myself and kept motionless and silent, and didn’t get up. He got up swiftly looking at his mates urging them to help him and they all jumped standing. ‘Is it time for a new “party”’ I thought to myself, still trying to hold silent and “coherent”, I loath this word “coherent”.
“I don’t know, but I am sure you can give me a full and “coherent” explanation.” Said the lady cunningly smiling while still looking that perplexing look of… of… don’t know but so sweet and submissive.
Oh sweet lady!! Why in heaven you come to “irritate” me? Why should I give a “coherent” explanation to everybody, including the Israeli interrogators?!!!
“take his clothes off!” the chief interrogator ordered his mates. They jumped on me but I kept completely silent, motionless. The very “academician” bunched my head angrily then retreated as if stung by a snake: “Oh, shit!! His dirty blood, this asshole!!” and he was “smeared” by my dripping blood on my side face.
Oh!! So clean and soft “academician”!! It’s awful to have a “blood-smeared hands”!!! But it’s my dear blood!!!
The hell, I have to start writing!!!
But still the crazy question is angwishly waiting for a quenching answer…. Why the hell I am taken to be –ist all the time…. Why I cant be just a simple Bedouin who is dreaming to live a normal life in this very “holy, or promised” land of the “chosen people”???
Sami, the bedouin.