When Nature Reminds You That You Really Aren’t the Boss

Mother nature. That thing. Sometimes, you love it, sometimes, you just can’t…

1 Here’s a scenario: You are a very lazy person who doesn’t like to wash. Day after day, sometimes weeks, you watch your washing pile up, but can’t ever gather up that drive to get it done with already.

And then, one day, you feel a burst of productive energy. “Let me do this washing,” you say to yourself, after which you cut open that new bag of Sunlight washing powder that should have been finished two weeks ago, if you’d been responsible, and through a really strategic economisation of pegs, you managed to was and hang EVERYTHING. That night, you go to bed with peace in your heart.

You wake up to a relentless shower, which looks like all the rains of the previous month combined.

In case you can’t tell what happens after this, let me just tell you your reaction: you cri evritiem.

2 Just when we thought we’d beaten the sun, what with the invention of photochromic spectacles, we the victims of myopia were in for a nasty shock: rain. You just can’t beat that thing.

No, just think about it. Already, you can’t see far. Then rain, which already impairs normal people’s vision, comes to impair yours again – exponentially! And even though your glasses have found a way to beat the sun, it decides not to shine. It’s like preparing so hard for a test, then having the teacher forget he was going to conduct it. As3m b3n ni?

So, you find yourself walking through life with a windshield in front of your eyes, sans the wipers. The. Freaking. Struggle.

3 This is not a rain issue. It is, however, largely to do with washing.

You ought to congratulate me anytime I’m washing something earlier than the night before I need to wear it. This weekend, I had washed my school skirt, fine-fine. My too-known, I didn’t remove it from the line. Monday was a holiday, so on Monday night, proud of myself for being ready before time, I went to the drying line and picked up my skirt.

Lo and behold, a glorious large splotch of something brown, crusty and dried glared at me from the bottom right of the front of the skirt. All I have to say to that bird is this: of all the clothes you could have released your no doubt majestic droppings on…why my skirt? Curse you.

Needless to say, late that night, I was washing.

 -Yours in Laziness and Misfortune,



Alice blissfully devoured a tuna sandwich, sitting on the picnic mat that was laid out on the grass in the middle of the garden. Her mother sat beside her, eating a sandwich of her own. The day was bright and cheerful, and even the animals seemed to agree; different caws, calls and cheeps from different birds could be heard from all directions.

Presently, two little bluebirds settled themselves on a nearby tree. One of them took up a repetitive series of chirps in exactly regular intervals, like a metronome on a synthesizer turned on. It went on for about two minutes before little Alice asked her mother, “Mommy, what do birds talk about all the time?”

Mother thought. “I don’t know, honey. What do humans talk about all the time?”

“All kinds of stuff!” replied Alice. “But I thought all birds do is fly, and eat, and sleep. How can you keep talking about flying and eating and sleeping?”

“Who knows, Alice? Maybe they talk about things a bit more interesting than that.”

“But mommy! Everything that comes out of their beaks sounds exactly the same!”


Baby Bluebird asked Mommy Bluebird, “Mommy, what do humans talk about all the time?”

Mommy Bluebird regarded the human duo in front of them and said, “They talk about themselves and how to live. They talk about finding new homes to place their ever-increasing number of baby humans in. And they talk about how to destroy our homes so they can make homes for their baby humans. They talk about how we mean nothing to them.”

Baby Bluebird was astonished! “Really?” she asked. “How could they possibly be talking about all that? Everything they say always sounds the same!”

“It’s a trick they use so that we can’t understand their evil plans. Look out, Baby!”

Both birds took off swiftly and landed in another tree. Baby Bluebird was frightened and began to sob.

“It tried to touch me, Mommy. It’s so ugly!” cried Baby Bluebird.

“It’s okay, sweetie. At least we got away.”




Alice turned back to her mother with a loo of dejection on her face. “Mommy, they ran away! They don’t like me!” She began to cry.

Mother consoled, “My love, sometimes nature just wants to be left alone.”




The sky had never looked so amazing. The sexy reds and oranges mingled with the yellow to form a gradient of a colour that should, by all rights, have its own name. Coupled with the blues, indigos and purples somewhere in the distance, where it had already turned dark, it was quite the soul-stirring sight.

It was the kind of scene to bring a poet to his knees; a sprinter to a halt; an atheist to sing odes. It was the kind of scene that some people dreamed of seeing, just to have the pleasure of describing the magnificence to their children someday.

Lucy sat right in front of it, and saw none of it. She was perched on a rock that overlooked gently lapping waves in the low tide. But she wasn’t looking at the sea. Heck, she hadn’t even wanted to come to the beach in the first place, having been forced out of the air-conditioned, wi-fi-equipped comfort of her room.

Who cared about surroundings and all that nonsense? In her opinion, there were more riveting things to look at, like this new gallery she’d just come across, a scene featuring a black sky, with white, rebellious clouds, and the last, feeble rays of a rapidly-setting sun, whose feeble colour reflected slightly on the ocean ripples below it. Beautiful. She had always credited herself for her appreciation of nature.

The irony.

“This can be my new wallpaper,” she said to herself. It was as simple as a touch of the ‘download’ button. That was all; she now had a whole sunset within reach, on seven inches of a sophisticated screen.

The sky was almost fully dark now.

A gentle gust of wind attempted to invite her to look up – a last chance to catch a glorious glimpse. Lucy felt it, and flipped her hair back to how it was before the stupid wind had blown it in her face. “Ugh, I can’t stand it out here anymore,” she thought, scared of the wind blowing ocean mist; scared that the water might get in her device and spoil the charger port or earphone jack. She picked up her tablet and went inside.

By this time, it was fully dark.

Somewhere in heaven, a spirit watched the whole episode, then said morosely to no-one in particular, “God, You used to be a best-selling artist.”