Friday, 30 December 2016

The bulbul story

The Bulbul story ... continued. 

Earlier today, in the afternoon, as Aryan and I sat in his room studying chemistry.  I saw my beloved bulbul spending some quality time with his mate.  

They were both sitting quietly , doing "Nothing".   There was no hurried rush to find food, or the constant flurry of activity with which they normally surround themselves.  They were, to use Aryan's words, simply chilling.  

This crazy bulbul, for the last 6 months, has been a constant source of pain and frustration for me.  

He has woken me up almost every morning with his pecking at his own reflection on my reflective glass window.   
Sometimes, even his mate would accompany him.        He would not only peck at his own reflection but would also hurl himself at the window in a way that his wings would hit his reflected enemy.   The amount of ruckus he's made early in the morning has made me want to kill him on more than one occasion.  

And he has done this pecking, like clockwork, every morning and then in the afternoons. 

I know this because in morning he would wake me up and later in many of the afternoon when I came home from office to study with Aryan, we would watch him from Aryans room (while we sat studying) pecking away at my window.  ( I can see  the outside of my rooms' window from Aryan's window)

Last week, after coming to my wits end, I finally went to a web site and figured out the way to stop the bulbul from pecking at his own reflection.    I put up a cloth outside the window and covered the glass ! 

Since then, the bulbul has stopped coming to peck at his own reflection.  

Today as I saw the bulbul and his mate relaxing in the afternoon, I  thought of the sheer amount of time and energy that the bulbul had spent in fighting his own reflection.  I know for a fact that there was no other bulbul trying to steal his mate or enter his territory.   But he was completely convinced of this and had spent so many hours fighting this completely imaginary fear.  

The amount of damage he must have done to his brains and skull as his beak banged away at the reflective glass must have been tremendous.   

The time he spent fighting his own reflection could have been spent on finding food or building or guarding his nest or simply hanging around with his mate doing nothing or perhaps even doing something constructive.   (Doing the right 'nothing' sometimes and doing right 'something' sometimes is the cornerstone of every good relationship, be it amongst bulbuls or humans) 

And so I now wonder.  What are the things that I worry about ? Which imaginary enemy am I pecking away at ? How much energy of mine is getting wasted on fighting a fear which really isn't there and is but a fragment of my imagination. 

I watched the whole futility of the bulbuls fight with his own reflection. 
He never saw it. I saw it clearly.   

This whole episode reminded me of the movie "Men in Black".  
In the movie "K"(tommy lee jones) opens a locker at a train station.  The small locker is inhabited by tiny alien creatures (C 18 Locker aliens) who think that the locker is the whole Universe and who looked upon K as the "the keeper of light " since he had left his watch (the light giver) inside the locker.  This watch illuminated the locker with its fluorescence.   
To the small aliens, inhabiting the locker, it was the entire Universe and all their problems were real and the size of locker was the sum total of their Universe 

In the last scene of the movie, K and J ( Will Smith) open another door and then they find that they themselves were inside a similar small locker which they had thought was the Universe.  They were in a small locker themselves.  The world outside was huge and there were gigantic aliens walking around. 


I saw the bulbul who in his understanding of the universe was fighting with his real enemy. His problem was real to him. His enemy was real to him.   But his position and the futility of his fight was completely apparent to me.  He was only fighting himself. 

But I realise that I too am a bulbul. 
I too am fighting imaginary fears and enemies.  I too am banging my head against imaginary problems.   

This world and its problems are part of my tiny locker.  
I too am doing so many idiotic things And banging my head against so many imaginary problems. 

I just hope that in the days to come Someone puts a cloth on my reflective glass and makes my imaginary fears go away.  And then, perhaps, I too can end up sitting with my mate, every lazy afternoon, in the shade of a lovely tree doing the right "Nothing" or perhaps doing the right "Something". 


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