When I was about 12 or 13, way before Amanda and Beatrice even left for America, way before I had a constant tiff with my brother over the sound space in our house and the shared computer, I bought him 72 guitar picks for christmas.
I was rummaging around in his drawer looking for playing cards the other day when I saw the pack of guitar picks. In my 13-year old mind, this was something he would really appreciate (him being in guitar ensemble at the time). Guitar picks. Lots of them. The more the better. They didn’t even play with picks in guitar ensemble but with bare fingernails.
The picks came in all shapes and sizes, all widths and thicknesses. First I went to Yamaha in Plaza Singapura to look for these picks, it being the definitive music store in my opinion at the time. But not the definitive guitar store it seems, for it only carried a paltry selection that wasn’t very interesting looking. The counter assistant told me to go to Swee Lee Music Shop in Bras Basah Complex. At the time (and now still), a rather sketchy looking place. I headed there and bought one of every pick they had. Each pick ranged from 60 cents to a dollar fifty.
I was really excited about his Christmas present and couldn’t wait for Christmas to come so I could see how much he liked them. When Christmas eve swung about and I couldn’t wait any longer (we were at a Christmas party somewhere) I shoved the picks triumphantly at him. All his older female friends thought I was the cutest thing ever.
Cute I suppose for being so clueless about useful Christmas presents and cute for really going all out for such a stupid idea. Cute as a synonym for pitiable, perhaps. The next day he gave me an ikea lamp.
There is no moral to the story. No twist, nothing.
Its sole purpose is to elucidate how many banal, uninteresting ideas can be expressed in a way that causes people to mistake really shitty, pointless stories for great literature.
Of course it could have had a punchline. If I fabricated it. But I didn’t. Some memories are for keeps.