The 67th death.
[Text by Sayantan Ghosh; photo by a ‘House Guest’]
“I thought he had died long ago” — this was the first reaction of Sayantan Ghosh’s friend Nandu when we contacted him over the phone, informing him of Mr Ghosh’s demise. Nandu, who is a fisherman in Varkala, a coastal town in Kerala, was otherwise happy to hear that his was the only number that was found on Mr Ghosh’s phone at the time of his death.
The body was discovered by a neighbor who had sneaked inside Mr Ghosh’s one-room apartment in Pondicherry to steal his collection of rare first editions of Albert Camus’s books, the only thing he was possessive about during his final years.
Mr Ghosh’s half-eaten corpse was found lying on the kitchen floor with a bottle of ketchup in his hand. His cat, Dr Lecter, is the prime suspect concerning his missing body parts.
Mr Ghosh’s failed writing career became the interest of many after he decided to go on a hunger strike following the popular rejection of his fifth book in a row. The caretaker of his building had something profound to add when we spoke to him. He said, “Sooner or later he would have just drowned in his sorrow. He had even stopped eating fish!”
Mr Ghosh died at the age of 69, and one of his friends, who seems to have been in school with him, wrote this message on his Facebook wall: “69 bro, you finally made it!!! xoxoxo #bucketlist”
A memorial service was to be held by the caretaker at his residence but was cancelled at the last minute due to poor attendance. Unconfirmed reports suggest that out of the four copies of Camus’s The Stranger that he owned, one shall be cremated along with him.
Nandu, the fisherman, later called us back to ask, “You’re sure it is him?”
Meanwhile publishers have lined up to bid for Mr Ghosh’s forthcoming official biography, temporarily titled The Man Who Became Cat Food.
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