Born and bred in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Rahad Abir is a fiction writer. His short stories have appeared in The Penmen Review, Aerodrome, Toad Suck Review, Blue Lyra Review and New Asian Writing. His wining short story ‘‘I am in London’’ has appeared in a UK anthology Brick Lane Tales. Currently he is working on his first novel. www.rahadabir.com
Johnson Road // short story by Rahad Abir
He knew it was simply unfair to go out on a date with his student’s mom. It involved risk too. But he said yes when she asked him. He was confused and fascinated and lost. The relationship was about three months of old, mostly talking and texting over the phone. Every evening he visited her home to tutor the second grade boy, and she hardly ever seemed to take any opportunity to talk to him then.
When someone asks me my profession, I always hesitate to answer. I cannot tell people that I write. I suspect that they will not take me seriously if I tell them about my profession or disclose that I left the US only to be a full-time writer. I always wanted to write a novel. The look they give me is easy to interpret. My gut feeling has always been that they are thinking, I am either stupid or insane. From time immemorial, intelligent people have been considered crazy, unsocial, and held on contempt for reading too much. Moreover, there is an orthodox belief in Bangladesh that all intellectuals are atheists. Or, shall I put it this way: the common belief is reading too much makes one agnostic. On rare occasions that I do tell the truth about my profession, they ask me ‘‘we do understand you write but what else you do?’’ "Nothing, I write full time" is an answer that has always evoked surprises. The majority finds it impossible to believe that a man with sound body and sound mind…