I once called this suicide helpline just to see how they function. I had a truck load of problems to recite and the guy on the other line totally thought I was going to kill myself. He very calmly told me that life is beautiful and I should not even THINK of dying. I asked him how he would feel if I went ahead and killed myself anyway. He then begged me to not do it, asked for my address and offered to send some volunteers over to help me. I was really pleased with him. He seemed like the sort of person who could genuinely help people who were contemplating on making that final journey to hell. Don't raise your eyebrows. The first lesson I learnt about suicide was that people who commit it, get a sure shot ticket to hell. There was just no other place for them. This suicide talk reminds me of this quirky classmate I had during my first year of Grad school. We were all studying Arts and we had Philosophy in our curriculum. Needless to mention, I didn't take it up and went for Political Science instead. But this dude was totally into it. One fine day I trooped into college looking like I'd lost my mind (which happened almost thrice a week) and I was informed solemnly that said dude had killed himself. I did not know how to react. I was also told that he had written a letter saying that nobody was supposed to be blamed and everyone should take this lightly as he was just passing over to the other side to see how it felt. How the hell did he plan to share his findings with us? I remember feeling extremely stupid that day. I kept going back to the day I had last seen him. I tried hard to recall his expressions. Had he already made up his mind by then or was it a last moment decision? I wanted to go back in time, slap some sense into him and take him out for a slushie. I was at a place in my life where a slushie could make me forget my sorrows and move on. Was he at a different place? I don't know. I never will.