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A Claustrophobic Nightmare: A Junior Narrative Diptych by Davis Brown (2012)

The story behind my diptych is a fairly universal experience that many could relate to. It is about a man named Mr. Machida with a horrible fear of tight spaces. He boards a plane heading on a direct 12-hour flight to Tokyo Japan. Mr. Machida finds his seat in the very back corner of the plane. Since nobody else is traveling with him, his seat to the left is open to anybody. He soon sees a gigantic man slowly pushing and pulling his way down the aisle. Unfortunately this man happens sit right next to Mr. Machida. The man plops down into the seat and oozes sweat from his face down to his arm. Mr. Machida is now confined on both sides, the wall to his right, and the large man to his left. He is surrounded on all sides! Mr. Machida's fear kicked in. He felt claustrophobic as the walls of the airplane began crunching inward towards his doom. It went dark. Mr. Machida awakes to a slight change in humidity. He has reached Japan, but the man next to him is nowhere to be found. The only trace left is a slight wet stain left on the cushioned seat. Mr. Machida walks out and is relieved that the plane ride was over. Although the worst of his problems has yet to come when he realizes he must take a packed full subway train to his next destination. The main idea behind the story is the convergence of an internal and external conflict. The internal conflict is that Mr. Machida has a serious claustrophobia issue, so fears cramped areas like a plane ride, and especially a packed subway train. If you have ever been to Japan, you may have had a first hand experience of how cramped it is. Metaphorically I decided to represent claustrophobia as a can of sardines, because sardines are closely packed and held in a small metal container. In my diptych I wanted an angle looking into the container, so people can envision the cramped space inside. Next, the external conflict in the story was that Mr. Machida ends up sitting next to somebody who was unfavorable. The unfavorable person was the large sweaty man who sits next to him. Metaphorically I thought that an unfavorable person is like an onion, because onions are typically thought of as being repulsive because they can make your eyes water because of the piercing smell.
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