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  • Writer's pictureanjali mohapatra

Sharks eyes!

Updated: Aug 7, 2023

It was Thursday morning. I was already frustrated for not getting enough feedback. All my dreams of being a writer were met by a cold, uncaring silence. I wished for the barest scrap of attention for my writing. My stupid mind was running after the mirage- worldwide acknowledgment! I felt like someone told me, ‘You need alignment in your writing, polished, high-quality vocabulary, and unique content. Can you do it?’

I answered hesitatingly, ‘I will try.’ Then leisurely, I went to finish the rest of my work. I was annoyed with myself and my racing, pessimistic mind. ‘I think, I have to relax a bit, to get rid of my nuisance thoughts,’ I grumbled to myself.

The only relaxation, suitable for the moment was the TV. I surfed the Channels to watch some entertaining programs. Somewhere, I stopped and gazed at the program very keenly. No movie, no serial, nothing impressed me much but that last program I watched lingered in my mind. Gradually every day after finishing my work, particularly at 10 p.m. I sat in front of the TV to watch that show. Somehow that program drew my eye.

My daydreaming was never drafted clearly. With thousands of uncertain thoughts, I laid down on my bed but that serial had captured my mind. Perhaps, it was a lucid dream, an effect of excess involvement of myself in that show……..

‘Five greatest entrepreneurs of the world had occupied their seats! They looked fresh, vibrant, and their smiles were sharp! As if they are waiting for their prey to slip. The door was opened. One by one the participants stood before the sharks, and gave a short spiel of their product, its importance, benefits, and advantages with some pictures, and some actions too to impress them for their partnership!

My turn was pretty behind. So, I had enough time to watch, grasp, and intricately analyze the style of presentation of others, and the response of veteran sharks! I was really scared! The interaction of sharks with the participants was quite tough- mixed with sweet and sour feelings! My heart was throbbing badly. Perhaps, I was the only candidate who hadn't prepared anything. When the turn came, I was totally numb!!!

The door was opened, and I entered the room. My empty stomach churned inside, and saliva dried up on my tongue. But somehow, my brain worked out instantly.

‘Hi, sharks!’ gently, I addressed all of them and forgot to introduce myself.

‘How can we help you, ma’am?’ a mild voice pierced through my ears.

‘Um, yes, no?’ I stuttered looking at her dignified smiling face.

Perhaps, they could understand my discomfort. With the gesture in their eyes, I could guess that I did something wrong.

‘Sorry! I didn't introduce myself. I am Aditi, shortly called Adi, a simple writer.’

They responded to me with a friendly smile. One of the sharks asked, ‘OK Adi, what do you want from us? You must be aware of what we are, right?!’

‘Yes, sir, I am! I don't want anything from you. But, um, I just want to request you something.’

‘What?! A request?’ They all laughed, pulling their eyebrows up, hunched their shoulders, and looked at each other with a big surprise!

‘Ok, Adi. What’s your request? May we know that?’ a sweet questioning voice came from one of the sharks.

I focused on the shark, who asked me. I took a deep breath, then said, ‘Ma’am, my request is: Please, go through my stories. That’s it.’

‘Stories?! What stories? Have you come to the ‘Shark Tank’ program, just for that?! Unbelievable!’ She was stunned!

‘Ma’am, I am so sorry! Directly, I knew, I couldn't meet anyone of you. I write simple stories based on some themes. I have no money sparing for either editing or for asking for reviews. I wished to be a well-known writer. The stories are not based on love or romance. They are just simple stories.’

‘But, then why didn't you approach a high-level critique?’ she asked genuinely.

I smiled and said, ‘Ma’am, this whole world is nothing but crazy after money! One out of a million, maybe an exception! Well, people are in demand, if and till they have money! The day you lose that, you would be unrecognizable by them. When I said ‘I have no money for editing’, how can I ask a high-level critique to review my stories? Everything requires money and money!’ After finishing my speech, I gazed at all five sharks for their reaction.

‘Ok! Since you are a storyteller, can you tell us a two-minute impressive story instantly as a sample?’ One among the five sharks asked mischievously.

‘Of course, sir!’

‘Ok, then start,’ the shark gazed at me eagerly.

I was too excited and felt extremely nervous. Immediately, I started my microfiction story:

‘Once, a smart ten years old boy prayed to God with full of heart. God was pleased with his prayer. He offered him a boon of his own. The little boy was extremely crazy after beautiful cars, so out of excitement, he stuttered, ‘Please God, give me the most beautiful, and the most expensive car, which I can only drive.’ God smiled, and said, ‘As you wish! The car can only be driven by you, nobody else!’ The next moment, an extra-ordinarily beautiful red color car appeared before him. He was overwhelmed with joy, but the very next moment he realized what blunder he did! He was only ten years! He has to wait for another long eight years for eligibility and by that time the charm would be vanished! It would be outdated!! He started crying for his foolishness.’

Either out of courtesy or genuinely, they clapped. But one of the sharks asked, ‘Um, ok! Good! But, how all of us and you would be benefited from that?’

‘Maybe, if you appreciate, people would come to know about me!’ I spoke honestly.

‘But, ma’am! For that matter, we are not the right people. You know that we are business people. Without any additional value, why should we do that?’ they all questioned at a time.

I swiveled my head so roughly, that it broke my dream. I came to my sense. Yes, it was nothing but a lucid dream! ‘Have I gone crazy? Why did I go to ‘Shark Tank’? Perhaps, my subconscious mind was haunted by the recognition! Maybe, while watching the program, I imagined my involvement in the show too much!

‘Oops! Enough!’ I got up from my bed, washed my face, then decided not to think too much, neither for my recognition nor to watch the program for a long time! ‘Shark eyes are not meant for me, after all, they are business enterpreneurs! Why should they care for me?’ Let me write for my satisfaction.

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