This is a post by Dax, but I (Anne) need to provide a brief note of explanation. We require Dax and McKane to write one blog post per week as part of their schoolwork (and you thought they were voluntary!). Dax wasn’t happy with any of the possible topics this past week, so I told him to do a creative writing exercise based on a picture I took in the square outside the Blue Mosque in Istanbul. We couldn’t figure out what the guy with the typewriter was doing but we had a lot of fun speculating. He ended up writing another post anyway about our overnight bus rides, but I liked this one so much, I thought we should post it as well. So here goes….
The following is 90% fiction. It is mostly illogical. That’s the way my parents want this post to be and so it’s the way I have to write it. And so I give you The Typewriter’s Grudge.
The Typewriter’s Grudge
It was a cool April afternoon in Istanbul. There wasn’t too much going on as far as Mustafa could see. Today had been good for his work. A group of illiterates were already lined up. He slid the carriage on his typewriter and yelled, “Open for business!” The waiting men hurriedly pushed and shoved to get to the front of the line. The burliest was always first. He began dictating to Mustafa. After a few sentences Mustafa began to laugh at the man. He was attempting to write a resume for a job at the McDonald’s a few meters down the street. He was obviously ill qualified. The man looked at Mustafa angrily and grabbed his collar. Mustafa quit laughing and went back to writing. The next few were quite boring, tax forms, legal documents and the like. This trend continued with a few marriage proposals, a string of resumes, and thee restaurant menus. Then one entirely unlike the others came.
“Dear Mustafa, I would like all the lira you stole from me back and I’d like it now or I’m going to have to take it from your flesh…” Mustafa kept typing.
“Idiot, you’ve got it all wrong!” Mustafa came out of the little writing trance he was in and said, “No, I’m quite sure I’ve got it all right. Let me recite: ‘Dear Mustafa, I would like all the lira you stole from me…'”
He stopped speaking and looked up at the man. He recognized him immediately. Two years ago Mustafa and his friends in an act of drunken stupidity had robbed this man’s house and gotten away with a fortune in bills. The man raised his fist and was about to strike Mustafa when a foreign family of six walked by. The crowd turned and looked, and so did the man. Sensing opportunity, Mustafa quickly picked up his steaming apple tea and threw it in the man’s face. The man grabbed at his eyes and doubled over in pain. Mustafa picked up his typewriter and ran.
He soon realized there was no escape. If Mohammed had tracked him down this far, there was little he could do to hide. Still he ran into a small alley and hid behind a pile of decaying wood. He caught his breath and thought to himself. He could do nothing. Sure, he could run, but that would just prolong the inevitable. He stood up and with an air of dignity went back to his typewriting post, sat down, and yelled, “Next!” Almost immediately following this, Mohammed’s fist found Mustafa’s face. Mustafa groaned and fell unconscious to the ground.