I’ve been a bit quiet of late on this blog – for reasons that I’ll go into at a later date – but I wanted to just share a little incident that happened today.

I work from home now, which means that I have my own little office upstairs. It appears to be a room that the flies like a lot. By flies, I mean houseflies. Your standard, everyday flies. Musca domestica. Not mosquitoes, anything that bites, or anything like that. Just flies.

Behind the computer on the desk, there is a notice board. I keep useful things pinned to it – the manifest for the boxes for my move when they arrive in a few days, my to-do list for work, things like that. And also – about an hour ago – a fly.

I’d been bothered by this fly a bit in the last hour. It had landed on my elbow, buzzed my hair, and generally done all sorts of things other than fly back out of the window where it came from. Something, I felt, had to be done. The fly had to go. So I flicked it.

I caught the fly, but only a glancing blow. It dropped to the desk, stunned. So I tried to kill it with the speakers. But that didn’t work too well. And the fly tried to free itself.

In short, I ended up with a fly with one wing, missing one leg. And it looked at me.

There was a surprising dignity about this fly. It stood, quite still, looking at me. And in my head, I imagined its thoughts.

That’s it then.

You’d better make it quick.

The one talent I had – the one thing I could do that would get myself out of this – was that I could fly. That’s gone now. You’ve taken that from me.

This hurts.

You’d better finish it.

So I did. I carefully moved the cables out of the way so I could use the flat side of the speaker. To make it quick. The fly didn’t move a muscle.

I’ve killed flies before. But never like this. I’ve never felt so guilty and so mean for killing a fly before.

Yes, they carry diseases, I know that. They’re pests and so on. But I never really thought about it before.

This morning, that was a (presumably) healthy, happy fly. All it did was fly through the wrong window. And its amazing ability, and eventually its life, was taken away by someone who can never possess it.

Life is weird, sometimes.

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