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The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

The Saratoga Falcon

What it’s like to be Aya-mese twins

“Are you guys identical or fraternal?”

No. No, we’re not. We aren’t cousins, sisters, twins or even the same person. We have two completely different brains and bodies, but sadly, our differing physical traits seem to go unrecognized by most people.

Even though Saya is nearly three inches taller, Maya has full braces, and we have completely different clothing styles, people continue to mix us up. They resolutely remain convinced that we look exactly the same.

Factors such as our black, curly hair, similar body type and Indian heritage make it easy for people to assume that we share DNA. We don’t.

We’ve been mixed up, misidentified and compared to each other ever since the first day we met nearly a year ago. In order to cope with the challenge of keeping our names straight, people have resorted to yelling “Aya” in our general direction and seeing which one of us turns around first. It’s become our collective noun.

Even our math teacher last year used “Aya” whenever he wanted one of us to do a problem on the board. It was rather frustrating, since he always gave participation points to the wrong person.

Driven by the state of confusion that seemed to follow us throughout the past year, we quickly became inseparable. This, of course, did not help matters much.

Now, rather than just the two of us, our entire families are being mixed up. Instead of being Maya Prasad and Saya Sivaram, we’ve become Saya Prasad and Maya Sivaram. It’s all pretty annoying.

To be honest, we’re sure that our parents confuse us every now and then when we’re together. There have been many times when our parents would give up trying to remember who is who, and just bark a collective “You!” to get our attention.

We’ll admit that we don’t make things easy. There are some things that make us uncannily similar, such as the fact that we have the same mannerisms and often finish each other’s sentences.

Even as we are typing up this story, we are finishing each other’s sentences. It can be irritating for us too, sometimes. Like right now. Maya, stop it.

There are times that we start laughing about the most random moments even if we have no clue as to what we are laughing about. Not just that, but we laugh at the exact same time. We think it’s telepathy.

Our conversations are often unintelligible to an outside audience, since we have intense debates about “Star Trek” and “Lord of the Rings” that are almost incomprehensible to an outsider. But when people do know what we’re talking about, they tune us out, as we have a great affinity for bad jokes that only we find funny. And besides our cringe-worthy jokes, the only other humor that we are capable of understanding is sarcasm.

For this reason, most people shy away from having a conversation with both of us at the same time.

While our friends attend parties and hang out on the weekends, we lounge on the reclining sofa in Maya’s house watching Netflix. When our classmates boast about their impressive cross country stats, we brag about our half marathons. They consist of watching four out of the eight “Harry Potter” movies.

So after reading this story multiple times, we can start to understand how it might be slightly difficult to tell us apart. But still, if we can do it, so can you.

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