The Travails of a Paper


Hey everyone! I have decided to start a new series to publish on my blog. It’s called- ‘The Diaries of Seemingly Insignificant Things’.
Within this series, I talk about the lives and stories of myriad everyday objects, thus rendering their insignificance non-existent.
I feel that these voiceless, lifeless things around us would have very interesting perspectives and are definitely worth sharing.
‘If only walls could speak’, they say; well, what if they actually can? That, I found to be a very intriguing concept and perspective thus leading me to ‘The Diaries’.
The first of the stories is about this paper. It begins with the paper at a factory somewhere narrating its story.
Read on and find out what it has to say.

I was white, as white as it gets. Spotless. Smooth. Soft. And boy, was I fit! My grains were all tight together making for one hell of an attractive texture. But the best part was my length. never had I seen that kind of length, not even from the other rolls around me who kept talking about how they’d grow out to be all long and smooth. Well, maybe they did but I, on the other hand, had grown out to be a dream.

Oh yes, the humans all around at the factory kept talking about how their ‘supercalendar’ and ‘bladecoater’ were unbelievably efficient and how that hateful pressing machine’s consistency at churning out rolls like me was amazing. But I knew better. It had absolutely nothing to do with any of these new fangled contraptions men were so inexplicably fond of, nothing to do with all those horrid, hurtful chemicals. No. It was all in my genes.

Coming from an elite plantation of fine Chestnut, I was cut out of one of the finest fellows on the estate. I was brought over to this mill- all pulpy and dirty but a fine specimen nevertheless. Initially, the lignin (glue holding our fibre together) removal was quite traumatic but I got over it- I couldn’t falter there, I was meant for bigger things.
And after a whole lot of processes, painful ones I might add, I finally reached the bladecoater. And here I was, post all the processes.

I was sitting pretty on this table looking at the other rolls around me- quite a few of them were riff-raff from wild trees who, very evidently, were outright toilet paper material.
There were others too, from good enough plantations but looked like I alone made it out of mine. Oh well, as long as I made it out, i suppose.
I was silently chuckling at this roll who was wailing after getting assigned to the toilet paper department when this other roll said, ‘Hey! How are you holding up?’
I gave him a quick head-to-toe (technically, we don’t have those but you pick up all kinds of stuff from these humans); he seemed OK. ‘I’m great. Why wouldn’t  I be?’ And after a pause, I added- ‘Where do you think they’ll send you?’
The roll gave a weak shudder and said ruefully, ‘I really don’t want to think about it. Anything but toilet paper is fine with me. Change the topic. What kind are you from?’

Although I sympathized with him, I couldn’t help but rub in- ‘You have no idea how excited I am about my future! I’m quite sure I’ll end up as a novel!’ Before he could start moaning again, I quickly answered his question- ‘Chestnut and in all modesty, of the best kind.’
At this, he fell into a complete slump. He muttered something about how he had stuff to do and dragged his sorry self away.
‘Ha!’, I said to myself. ‘What a mess! He was so abso-‘ BEEEEEEEP, blared the factory speakers. It was time for the decision.
I was going to become a novel. Maybe Ludlum’s latest. Or this amazing reprint of some great literary work, Shakespeare perhaps? I would go down in history as being the paper that bore the great man’s words in the latest reprint. I deserved nothing less, being the fine specimen I was.
I glanced at the others around me- a nervous lot of quivering and scared papers. Ha! Mere peasants- helpless against fate! I wasn’t. I wouldn’t accept anything lesser than a novel. I’d revolt, in whatever way I can. I won’t let myself get cut nor would I let them move me. I would- I broke off.
‘Why on Earth am I tensed?’, I asked myself. ‘Nothing but the best will happen’. With this, I resumed waiting for the announcement, pretending I didn’t notice the tension rapidly building up inside.
Novel. Novel. Novel. Novel. Novel. Novel. Novel. ‘Notebook!’
That wasn’t for me, right? I’m not notebook material. That’s for the peasants.
This big, hairy man walked up to me. ‘Notebook’. No. Impossible. ‘Notebook’.
I’m elite. This is a dream.




  1. amruta00487 · Nov 20, 2014

    Very well written!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. QUY · Sep 25, 2015

    Great Sunny


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