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“A person whom you regard as a ‘misfit'” by Qasim Salman‏


It was my first day at my new university. I sat in a cold seat among many others overwhelmed by the idea of a daunting new professor with a strict tall figure and years of experience to his name. As I was imagining how he would look, he entered the enormous hall from a big blue door behind me. He walked down the stairs in a shaky manner as if his mind was somewhere else; he was rushing through some steps and about to trip on some and very slow on others. He carried a large blue file with muddled old papers, topped with several tattered books. Eventually, he reached his massive table which he easily filled up with his books and notes. All the way he continuously looked down at the ground as if he was studying it. Then with a creaking white chalk he wrote his name in a messy manner.

He then turned around and I could finally see him. He was odd. He had many years on him and was a lean man. Oddly, his forehead was wrinkled but the skin of his entire remaining face was fresh. He had almost two or three hairs on his bright shining cranium, and his eyebrows were barely visible. His eyes were difficult to see behind the large glasses covering half of his face. The lenses were as thick as brick walls. Behind which his eyes narrowed to concentrate. As he turned I saw that he had skin coloured hearing aids in his alert ears. Underneath all this, however, was a big bright smile showing that he had no worry in the world, which opposed all his other features.

Overtime, I got to know him. He taught us things in a different manner, but a good one in which we could easily understand everything, which was written so vaguely in our concrete blocks of books. He instantly understood everything. His magnificent brain was Usain Bolt in understanding long, and out of this world equations which so many people do not even think of solving. His mind is always alert like a deer in a predator’s territory. He always had a hunger for knowledge and problem-solving; he was always thinking and working his extra-ordinary brain to the limit.

I think that his constant thirst for this knowledge has removed him from the world. This may be the cause of his untidy, stained clothes. The reason he is wearing his dark grey cotton sweater backwards or wearing short tang coloured pants. Or maybe the reason his brown oxford and brogues were unpolished. This may also be the cause his glasses were always dirty or his two, three strands of hair were not even in placed. But it was surely the reason for that amazing, yet rare look in his eye which show his want to learn which some may find scary, the same way his mismatched socks are found hilarious.

People may find him a ‘misfit’ as he was different and did not fit in and people were discomforted by him. But to me this magnificent man, who had not bathed for weeks, had in his head a masterpiece which could understand anything and everything. He was surely a ‘misfit’, but because all of us remaining people were too dumb for him and did not deserve to have him in our society.