I had the most unusual visitor today. Not so much because of anything he said, but his face. He had a really wide gap tooth, which I had a hard time trying not to look at. To look or not to look, was the great debate.
"Don’t look," i said to myself.
I would look.
|Kinda hard to look away from eh?|
I would still look.
(I trust you have figured out that this was a debate between the left and right part of my brain)
To understand why, I have to explain to you what this peculiar visitor looked like.
He had asymmetrical lips Yes I noticed those two. One slightly crooked thin upper lip attached to a very full-quite sensual- lower lip. These I had to notice first before I saw those teeth I mentioned earlier.
So yes, in between those lips which seemed a hybrid of Sylvester Stallone and somebody else who lies tauntingly at the edge of memory- was that gap. Now, I have to point out that from the moment he walked into my office this man began talking.
About workers, unions and non-payment of fees. lawyers, disputes and non-payment of fees, you get the picture.
I nodded; this way and that way up and down.. I crossed and uncrossed my hands, took out my pen scribbled a little. Looked this way and that way, through him and at him. Glanced at my computer screen, fidgeted with my mouse. On and on he talked, and still I listened.
Now because I was listening and nodding, it was hard to get my brain to really focus on instructing my eyes not to stare. So I looked and looked away, looked and looked away at those teeth, much like a thief eying something in your hand. Or to bring it closer to home, like a hwindi (bus conductor) trying to decide if you have paid your fare or not.
It was hard not to look. His gap tooth was that 'gappy'. So much so, you could see his tongue flashing in the pits of his mouth, and if you looked carefully you could seed saliva balling up and being ejected in a salvo of well placed vowels.
On and on he went. Spitting and talking.
Now the tongue, now the spit.
I daresay the the whole process was quite mesmerising. I just couldn’t look away, his face seemed to have so much going on. His awfully large nose,(i hope you are picturing it) flaring out in punctuation of every sentence, now what you need to understand is that most people punctuate statements with and gestures, and foot stamps.
|wooooow, easy does it!|
His eyes too had an eerie quality. They peered at me from a high gleaming birdlike in his overlarge head. for the life of me I couldn't tell whether he was looking at me or through me.
When thirty minutes later he got up to leave I was glad.
He did it with quite a flourish too, ceremoniously picking up his attaché case, he made as if to lean back. Then he continued, with a heavy sigh he hiked his overly large trouser, straightened his tie and stood up to leave.
He wasn’t pleased.
I know this because he was scowling when we shook his hands. I didn’t care though. Those hands of his were cold and clammy. Reminding me how very hot it was out, and how the little fan perched on the edge of my desk was doing a good job of keeping me cool, without my body needing to resort to sweating like his was doing.
With that, he turned and left, I was glad to see the back of him, much, I didn’t care when he slammed my door shut. Instead my attention had shifted to the little flecks of saliva he had left on my desk.
“Please Lord, don’t let him come back,” I implored, and with that I reached for the phone to summon the cleaning lady.