Jim Nuzum

Against a white wall there is a plant on a stand. The stand is white and shaped like an obelisk except it has a flat top. The surface is smooth and shiny.

It is like Formica.

The plant resides inside pot on the stand. The pot is light gray, shade #34. The pot is a perfect cylinder. With a height of 30.018 cm and a diameter of 16.310 cm. It is plastic: poly------. it is .413 cm thick. It has a red design on it. The design looks like this: it has the area of a square with a semicircle (equal in diameter to the length of one side of the square) butted to one of its sides and a congruent semi circle butted to an adjacent side. This design covers 6.444 cm2.

The plant is very simple, it is one shoot which rises four decimeters from the surface of the soil, after which it splits into five leaves as per Fibonnacci.

The single shoot is .502cm in diameter at its base and .396cm just before it splits.

The leaves are at angles: 72 degrees 30 minutes and 27 seconds, 73'26'18', 75'00'03', 70'57'00', and 68'06'11'.

One leaf is 7.011cm long, another is 6.993, the others are 5.630, 5.458, and 5.111cm. The widths: 4.230cm, 3.670cm, 3.725cm, 3.900cm, and 2.110cm, respectively.

The leaves are .081cm thick, .083cm thick, .086cm, .07...

I tire of measurements. They begin to sicken me. I move away from the plant, disgusted, convulsing.

Down a white corridor I walk for some time. Nothing but white around me. White walls, white floor, white ceiling, white vanishing point ahead, white vanishing point behind. Somewhere inside of me a white skeleton walks, legs moving, arms swinging, head wobbling, spinal chord flexing with each step.

Boredom finds me sitting down against one of the white walls--it is the left hand wall unless I turn around, then it is the right hand wall. It really doesn't matter though, left or right. If I had a compass I could easily settle the matter, unless I am at the e north pole or the south pole for that matter. This business of which wall I am leaning against stumbles me for a while. I work over the polar riddle: if you are at one of the magnetic poles in a hall way whose walls are identical, how do you know which wall is which?

The issue sickens me and I decide that if the walls have no distinguishing features of their own then it does not matter which is which. With this idea in mind I spit on one of the walls and call it the Spit wall. The other wall I term the No Spit wall.

Surely I could come up with names a little more elegant, but it really would be a waste of time so I just sit against the No Spit wall and doze.

I sleep until I am terribly uncomfortable. I have to move, so I lie down on the floor and sleep some more. I go through several different positions and finally cannot sleep any longer. I have to get up.

On my feet, I try to sleep but I can't, so I just stand there looking down one end of the corridor and then down the other. Each end of the corridor is identical. It occurs to me that I could walk one direction, fall asleep, wake up, and walk in the opposite direction believing that I was walking in the same direction that I had been waking before I slept.

Except, of course I have the spit wall to guide me. I grow tired of standing here and decide to walk away from here. I can walk left of the spit, or right of the spit. The decision is too much for me so I carefully rub away all the spit from the wall. I set to spinning myself about. I count one revolution, two, three, four,... I soon fall down on the floor, dizzy.

When I am steady enough to raise myself I realise that each direction is identical, and was identical before I defined left of the spit and right of the spit.

So I decide to walk.

I walk until I come to a fishtank five decimeters tall, three decimeters deep and a whole meter in length. There are several fish inside. it takes me a while to come up with a precise number because the fish keep moving around even while I try to count them. besides they all look more or less the same. I finally come up with 24 as a reliable number. Two dozens.

I spend a lot of time looking at those fish, they are really quite interesting. I take great care in naming them and come up with twenty four names, each name an individual trait that corresponds to only one fish. For example, I come up with Biggest Fish, Smallest Fish, Fungus Faced Fish, Sharpest Tail Fin, Whitest Fish, Orangest Fish, and Black Spotted Fish #43 (the number corresponds to the number of spots on the fish)

Once I have them named, it takes me a while to actually recongise each fish by its name. Some of them I can only recognise by careful and tedious studies. I even try to come up with a few relations between the fish, suchas, Black Spotted Fish #42 is actually longer than Black Spotted Fish #43.

So once I get the names all strait I track the fish to see what they do.

After a while I get very disheartened: these fish only look around for food. Sometimes in their searching they bump into each other but they quickly seem to forget their encounters. Indeed, except for occasional collisions they ignore each other all together in their search for food, swimming back and forth in the same 15 liters of water.

The fish really disgust me. I walk away convulsing.

It's all white again, sickening white. This white disgusts me more than anything. I sleep on until its too uncomfortable to sleep and then I walk some more.

I wake up and find a painting on the wall above me. The frame is wooden with a height of 4 decimeters and a width of 6 decimeters. The wood is maple. The frame contains a forest scene with large pine trees with brown needles on the floor below them. A brook cuts across the canvas, flowing over stones. There are many stones along the bank of the brook and there are also pale white and violet and pink and yellow flowers. Further down the brook there are clovers and grass on the banks. In the grass there is a small rabbit viewed in profile. Its fur is white and gray, its nose pink an its eye yellow. It appears to be munching on something and looking cautiously out of its eye. In the background the forest is dark.

I stare at the painting for a long time. It pleases my senses and gives me respite from the whiteness all about. I drink in the colors, the shapes, the forms. A human made this painting. Human labor was put into it. Time, it is worthwhile. Look at the fine details, the rabbits fur, the tiny nose and eye, the rocks, the shadows, individual blades of grass, clovers, the leaves on the trees...

They are brush strokes that's all.

This particular blade of grass is 0.301cm long and travels the catenary curve described by the equation----------. That leaf covers an area of canvas .001cm2 in size. In all only eight different pigments were used to paint this painting. All eight pigments perfectly reproducible in a factory. If I had the materials I could painstakingly paint a painting so exact, so close to the original, with a maple frame, that the difference between the two would only be discernible with a magnifying glass and careful study. The two paintings would be so similar, like Black Spotted Fish #'s 34 and 36. Two things so similar in appearance, in action, and in location--they might as well be the same.

This painting is worthless. Human effort. What effort I have put into merely walking this sterile hallway. Is this painting worth any more than my passage?

I could spend hours randomly scraping paint from this painting and produce a much more interesting and inventive painting. Randomly scraping. Or painstakingly scraping.

But scraping paint is worth no more than walking, and since I am so sick of this painting I will walk.

I begin to convulse and fall to my knees. There is a gagging in the back of my throat. My head is dizzy and sick. I want to be away from this painting that hangs over me. I claw my way down the hall gurgling and spitting.

I feel better now, good enough to walk. The walls are white. The ceiling is white. The floor is white. The vanishing point ahead of me is white. I don't bother to look behind me because I know that all I will see is white.

I sleep and walk.

Up ahead there is a window, I see it in the wall. I move towards it. I look out and see animals and vegetation. Its all so disgusting so I keep walking.

I sleep. I walk.

Up ahead there is a mirror, I can see it in the wall. I move towards it. I look into it and I see myself.