I like to think of myself as the type of person who would never hurt a fly, but, this morning there was one on my laptop. First he flew back and forth over my keys, and then he landed on my water bottle. He walked around for a while, checking things out, twirling his little mustache between his fingers, and then he flew up to my lampshade. He rubbed his little hands on the fabric, most likely he vomited on it, and then he took another spin around the room. He was young, spry and carefree. A “catch me if you can” type trying out his new wings. After I swatted at him a few times, he figured out that I was no match for him and he planted himself on my computer screen and just stood there reading for the longest time. I tried to shoo him away again and again, but at a certain point, he didn’t even try to get away, knowing he could. He just stood there motioning that I should get off his back.
And then I killed him.
Why did I do it? I wondered.He wasn’t a criminal. He didn’t try to bite or kick me. If someone were to ask me why I killed him, I would have to say it was because he flew around. That’s it! That was the cause of his death. Flying.
Afterwards I couldn’t get any work done. Hours went by. I made phone calls to distract myself, but I couldn’t get the fly out of my head. I wondered if he’d eaten anything that day. I thought about how thin he looked. Was he hoping to put on weight? Was he looking for something small to eat when I thought he was reading. Did he have a girlfriend?Who were his parents? Did he have any friends at all to speak of?
Why did God even make flies? I Googled “what is the purpose of flies anyway?” and learned they not only help decompose rotting matter, they are great pollinators.
It is now 6:17 PM and I wasted the entire day thinking about the fact that I took an innocent life. A great pollinator no less. I wondered how I could make it up to the fly community. At the very least I could make him a proper burial and put a little rotting matter on my doorstep for his friends and relatives. I think I will do that. I’ll make him a little shiva. Just as soon as I get rid of this annoying spider.