It can’t all be killer


It’s hot as a furnace in Colombo and my house smells like fish. We bought the cheap fish for the cat and it actually stinks. The cat got his nuts snipped today. Today he’s wandering around, stoned out of his gourd. The kids are home and they want to play. I’ve been playing so much Monopoly Deal that I can tell you the properties in my sleep. States Avenue, purple. North Carolina Avenue, green. This is all a roundabout way of saying, I haven’t gotten any writing done today. I was also lazy and watched a bunch of football videos, but let’s blame it on the children.

Blame The Children

The problem is not the time I’m interrupted. All together it’s maybe an hour. The problem is the interruption. As a writer, if I can write down what comes to me in dreams, I’m done in 45 minutes. If I’m interrupted, however, it takes me the whole day. And I’m interrupted the whole day (when they’re not at school). If I ever catch that train of thought again, it’s quickly derailed. Right now, for example, I’m on a train of thought which my son derails to ask me about some dumb shit. He was pointing out a moth on a lamp. Which is actually pretty cool. Where was I again?

Interruptions shatter the hours like so much sweet shrapnel. Now he’s asking me if Sri Lanka put a flag on the moon. ‘You can be the first!’ I’m ashamed to say I yell at them for such cute questions, but I do. But I have things to do. Right now, for example, I could spend the next 15 minutes bathing the child, or spend 30 minutes yelling at him to bathe himself. I think I’ll choose the latter as I always do. Pride goeth before the fall, which means, logically, that as long as you stay proud, you’ll never fall.

Wait, We’re All Children

Where was I? Who cares, it’s a new paragraph. This is the absolute state of writing (or doing anything) when you should really be doing something else. A child’s interruptions, of course, are not for no reason. I’m a parent, I should be parenting! If you spend one focused hour with a child they’ll actually leave you alone. Instead we give children many distracted hours, and no one…



Indrajit (Indi) Samarajiva is a Sri Lankan writer. Follow me at, or just email me at