Six facets, eight vertices, and twelve edges. I use the elements of these simple forms to imitate, imitate the life itself.

I am a professor. This is the only thing I am 100% sure about myself. I do not bother to recall my name and age. I am not sure whether I can remember it or not; because when I try to remember my name, which may not even exist, or any clues in my mind, my head is pounded and heavy. The world is spinning and I want to vomit. To be short, the word “professor” is everything to me, like the only two digital numbers to computers.

Beep, Beep, Beep. What is buzzing? A clock or my phone, maybe.

There is some liquid stickiness on my face. A sense of coldness from the marble floor becomes more real, and then I find myself lying there, wherever there is, with my face dipping into a puddle of coffee. I pull myself up and grab a remote control lying nearby. Without anyone telling me what to do, I press a button and the irritating sound stops.

Lots of paper scatters everywhere on the ground. I can see different names and numbers randomly drown on them, dimly. I bend down and start to collect them. I have no interest to see what those papers are about. At this time, I need to hurry up because, for no reason, I know my students are waiting for me. Waiting for me to teach them a good lesson about… about what?  A sudden chill swept through me; I cannot recall anything I can teach and talk about. Once again, the only voice rings in my head, “You have to go and teach students, now!” It is like an instinct, the unconditional learning, deeply carved in my bone and flows in my blood.

            “Unbelievable!” I start to rummage through the papers and try to find some evidence. Most of the papers are splashed with coffee blots. A Basic Introduction to the Origin and Structure of English (What the hell?); Cell Division and the Law of Distribution (What the hell??); Main consequences of the Industrialization in Europe. (What the hell???) Hundreds of thousands of irrelevant papers piles up in front of me, as though a giant beast is mocking me. The debris of a coffee cup is visible on the ground once I remove all the papers. I wipe all the coffee spots with some tissue and pack all the fragments in a plastic bag. When I throw all the waste into the trash can, I find there are already ten plastic bags and rolls of tissue piling up in the can, perhaps there will be more.

             On the dresser lies a tie and my formal suit. Near the tie is a full cup of coffee, reeky and steaming. I conveniently place the papers and remote aside on the desk and begin to put on my suit and tie. “Now I am ready to greet my students,” I think, picking up the coffee. Out of the corner of my eyes, I see the reflection from the mirror, and nothing is there.

            Nothing is there; I cannot see my own figure, only the marble floor and white lime wall. Astonished, I grasp the edge and shake the stupid mirror. Even though I can see the ripple in the cup. The cup is floating in the air. I am still invisible to myself.

            The cup drops out of my hand and smashes on the ground. I do not care. I have to run away and hind somewhere. But once I step on the puddle of coffee, I lose my balance and fall down like a sack of potatoes. My head knocks on the remote and it drops off the desk and onto the ground. All the papers flutter in the air like a confused flock of magpies. I did not feel the pain when hitting the ground, but I hear the silvery crash. My consciousness rises from my body gradually.

I am an accountant but I cannot remember my name. I try to recall but I fail because of the heavy headache. Though I cannot tell you the concrete reasons, “Accountant” means so much to me, means everything.

Beep, Beep, Beep. What is buzzing? A clock or my phone, maybe.                                                                                                                      

There is some liquid sticking in my face. I find myself lying on the floor with my face dipping into a puddle of coffee…

Maybe life is a cube, where I live and die, where I can never see through, where I can never hear clear. 

Published by Sam Chen