Monday, December 31, 2007

The Red Areas of My Brain

I've been thinking of my no-compromise zones. Thought you might want to know too....

1. Privacy: I'm fierce about me-time, and I'll tell you straight-out if you're not wanted right then. I expect knocks on my door before you enter. I leave things scattered about my space in the trust that they will not be picked up/misused/poked into. Whether I am bathing, sleeping, staring into space or whatever, I would really appreciate it if you were sensitive and intelligent enough to let me be.

2. Books: I believe in sharing these small pieces of delight as fully as I can. You tell me you want to read/borrow something off my shelf...I'll gladly give it to you. But I do not appreciate books being removed from my room without my permission. Also, I will not lend books to a 'friend's friend, cousin, aunt'...in short, no one I have not met and evaluated. Any book lent out is expected to be returned in very good condition. I don't care if you are the most bindass, carefree person ever, you screw up my books, I'll come and cut out your tongue.

3. Writing: I write. I do ok. I'll write what I'm told if it brings in money. I'll write what I'm not told if it gives me a kick. I'll write the opposite to what I'm told because I'm feeling like a wuss and I need a small act of rebellion. Don't come round with a list of shoulds and should-nots. I'll slap you!

4. Love: I'm blind, deaf and dumb in defence of certain people. I might (and probably do) yell at them most of the time myself, but YOU can't. Don't come telling me 'I really think your mum, dad, brother, friend etc, should....' I appreciate that you have an opinion. I appreciate that you have the right to express it. I do not appreciate imposition, even verbally. If the only way you can express yourself is to be pseudo-righteous, self-satisfied and with an air of let-me-show-you-how-to-manage-your-life-better, either shut up or get slugged.

5. The politics of Bengal: This is a very recent development in my consciousness.
Yes, tis a mess. Yes, it's regressed terribly this past year. But were you there? Have you grown up in the textures and scents of Calcutta? Bengal, however she is....dark, volatile, full of talk...is woven tightly into my blood. And that's the only way you 'get' Bengal. You don't read newspapers and shake your head disapprovingly and snigger at Communism and understand.
You go into the storm. You wear the muzzle. You rally against it.
You don't show your utter stupidity by standing miles away, pointing at the mess and saying, 'Shit, what are those Communists up to?'

6. Change: I'm very good at standing outside and giving myself the critical once-over. I don't need you to do it. Don't look at me as an Improvement Project. Don't ever try and bulldoze me. If you are one of those authoritarian, thick-skinned people who begin every sentence with 'what I want you to do is...,' I suggest you tone it down. I am completely aware of the way I am...if I need a reminder, suggest, don't walk all over me simply because you have a compulsive need to manage other people's lives.

I loved writing that out!

Hope yall have just the kind of night and year you want.

Much love.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

The Better Song Baby

I went out and had fun today after a long time. A concert at Anandban Club. Did me a world of good just to dress, moisturize and wear kajal.

Some good music...superlative guitar and drums....some hilarious vocals, but most of all, a lot of familiar faces made up the evening.

Twas good to see Mannu and Kashmira who can chase the blues off by simply being around. Good to sing along to 'Bittersweet Symphony' and 'Summer of '69' and 'Country Roads' all while flapping my hands and doing other dance movements which clearly indicated that Coke and antibiotics do not mix well.
Weed and I did a lot of giggling and bitching. I firmly believe that the healing process is nothing, nothing without these! Missed the Rambler immensely :)
The kiddie performers were adorable, if off-key.
There was a rendition of 'Kiss Me,' which made me want to slap the singers, throttle them...do anything but kiss them.


And it was good to tickle and have pointless arguments with the Oddball. Gives me a real rush!
Grin!

So the song I'm singing is...I'm getting better I'm getting Better yeah yeah...

While you think of ways you can

a) avoid me
or
b) quickly slip some arsenic into my food

read this.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Waking up, slowly

I've been sick for over ten days now. I've never had a prolonged illness before so...new experience there. I'm recovering slowly.
The temperature is subsiding, the cough softening...but the tiredness that is deeply physical, the inability to enjoy eating, the shortness of temper... will take time.

I miss my non-illness days intensely. College, meeting friends in Savera, the iced tea and cigarette that is a morning ritual for many of us, movies, insane laughter, chips and chip-books...
I've wanted to be left alone these past few days. But I've also wanted pampering, a good laugh, Mum...
I've been perfectly irritable and nasty at times..and Dad has been the best of sports about it. He's home now, so..he got to hang out with Grubby, Sick, Snappy Me the most. He worried a lot, made me lovely soup, left me alone without my having to tell him, made no demands at all...

I am definitely not enjoying this learning. The knowledge that my famously steely backbone and constitution can, in fact falter, is hardly gratifying. I don't take kindly to being looked after. I am yet to be comfortable with that kind of loving :)

What I am realizing, is that it is terrible to be sick. My illness will last perhaps two weeks...my impatience to get well, to taste life again makes me think of those who may never get well. Who lie in strange, impersonal hospital beds for months and months. How do they reconcile themselves? Or do they keep fighting? How do you tell yourself, and accept, that you will never see the sun again?
I missed the tnt Christmas party at Sassoon this year. I mean, I really missed it!
I wanted to hear Yam and Nan sing. I really wanted to see the kiddies and the way they look at the decorations we put up. With all my love for Christmas, I can never get that look.
And I wanted to see Santa, cos we only get to fight once a year. So yeah Shri-Kant, even though you don't read this, and Boss there is absolutely no need to tell him...missed seeing you this year :)

I have pictures to put up and stories to tell...soon as I've woken up a bit more.

Keep in good health, now :)






Monday, December 24, 2007

Rand a Rary Rappy Ristmas Ro Roo Rooo




A Politically Correct Christmas Story


'Twas the night before Christmas and Santa's a wreck...

How to live in a world that's politically correct?

His workers no longer would answer to "Elves".

"Vertically Challenged" they were calling themselves.


And labour conditions at the North Pole were alleged by the union to stifle the soul.

Four reindeer had vanished, without much propriety,

Released to the wilds by the Humane Society.


That Santa had better not use just reindeer.

So Dancer and Donner, Comet and Cupid

Were replaced with 4 pigs,

and you know that looked stupid!


The runners had been removed from his sleigh;

The ruts were termed dangerous by the E.P.A.

And people had started to call for the cops

When they heard sled noises on their rooftops.


Second-hand smoke from his pipe

had his workers quite frightened.

His fur trimmed red suit was called

"Unenlightened."


And to show you the strangeness of life's ebbs and flows,

Rudolf was suing over unauthorised use of his nose

And had gone on Geraldo, in front of the nation,

Demanding millions in over-due compensation.


So, half of the reindeer were gone; and his wife,

Who suddenly said she'd enough of this life,

Joined a self-help group, packed, and left in a whiz,

Demanding from now on her title was Ms.


And as for the gifts, why, he'd never had a notion

That making a choice could cause so much commotion.

Nothing of leather, nothing of fur,

Which meant nothing for him.

And nothing for her.


Nothing that might be construed to pollute.

Nothing to aim, Nothing to shoot.

Nothing that clamoured or made lots of noise.

Nothing for just girls, or just for the boys.


Nothing that claimed to be gender specific.

Nothing that's warlike or non-pacifistic.

No candy or sweets...they were bad for the tooth.

Nothing that seemed to embellish a truth.


And fairy tales, while not yet forbidden,

Were like Ken and Barbie, better off hidden.

For they raised the hackles of those psychological

Who claimed the only good gift was one ecological.


No baseball, no football...someone could get hurt;

Besides, playing sports exposed kids to dirt.

Dolls were said to be sexist, and should be passe;

And Nintendo would rot your entire brain away.


So Santa just stood there, dishevelled, perplexed;

He just could not figure out what to do next.

He tried to be merry, tried to be gay,

But you've got to be careful with that word today.


His sack was quite empty, limp to the ground;

Nothing fully acceptable was to be found.

Something special was needed,

a gift that he might Give to all without angering the left or the right.


A gift that would satisfy, with no indecision,

Each group of people, every religion;

Every ethnicity, every hue, Everyone, everywhere...even you.

So here is that gift, it's price beyond worth...

May you and your loved ones,

enjoy peace on Earth.



~~~~


Author Unknown


~~~~~
Wishing yall lit candles, laughter and wonderful memories this Christmas.

Choosing



I had all the realities to choose from, I chose instead the fairy tale

told to me by a gypsy

in a red-bell skirt

and pretty eyes

I chose

to believe

in sand being a natural exfoliant

In listening to the sea

In twined fingers

and love songs

Oh but the sharp edges I had to see

Before I chose...

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Hmm..


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Erich Fried

What It Is

It is madness
says reason

It is what it is
says love

It is unhappiness
says caution

It is nothing but pain
says fear

It has no future
says insight

It is what it is
says love

It is ridiculous
says pride

It is foolish
says caution

It is impossible
says experience

It is what it is
says love.



Bush with Heart-shaped Leaves

Warm summer rain:
When a heavy drop falls

the whole leaf quivers.

So my heart quivers
each time

your name falls on it.




But


At first I fell in love with

the brightness of your eyes
with
your laugh

with your joy in life


Now I love your weeping too
and your fear of life
and the helplessness
in your eyes

But I will help youwith your fear
for my joy in life
is still
the brightness of your eyes





Without You


Not nothingwithout you
but not the same
Not nothingwithout you

but perhaps less

Not nothingbut less
and less
Perhaps not nothing

without you
but not much more



An Attempt

I have attempted-

while working -

to try
thinking of my work

and not of you

And I am happy
that the attempt
did not succeed.



Cancellation


Being able to breathe out

one's unhappiness

breathe out deeply
so that one can
breathe in again

And perhaps also being able to speak
one's unhappiness
in words

in real words

which are coherent
and make sense
and which one can
understand oneself
and which perhaps

someone else can understand
or could understand
And being able to try

That again would

almost be

happiness



Perhaps


Rememberingthat is
perhaps

the most painful way
of forgetting
and perhaps

the kindest way
of easing
this pain

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Just a little..


My neck is in spasm and I'm a little weepy. But black-and white images, Humphrey Bogart saying 'Here's lookin at you kid,'

and these lines

never fail to soften me..


You must remember this

A kiss is just a kiss

A sigh...just a sigh...


...the world will always welcome lovers

as time goes by





Thursday, December 13, 2007

Ugh...all around me are relationships! Two great ones, one a muddled up mess, one on the recycle track and one fast disappearing.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Dad-Daughter Current Favourite

Must have left my house at eight, because I always do
My train, I'm certain, left the station just when it was due
I must have read the morning paper going into town
And having gotten through the editorial,
no doubt I must have frowned.

I must have made my desk around a quarter after nine
With letters to be read, and heaps of papers waiting to be signed
I must have gone to lunch at half past twelve or so
The usual place, the usual bunch
And still on top of this I'm pretty sure it must have rained....
The day before you came...

I must have lit my seventh cigarette at half past two
And at the time I never even noticed I was blue
I must have kept on dragging through the business of the day
Without really knowing anything, I hid a part of me away.
At five I must have left, there's no exception to the rule
A matter of routine, I've done it ever since I finished school
The train back home again
Undoubtedly I must have read the evening paper then
Oh yes, I'm sure my life was well within it's usual frame
The day before you came....

Must have opened my front door at eight o'clock or so
And stopped along the way to buy some Chinese food to go
I'm sure I had my dinner watching something on TV
There's not, I think, a single episode of Dallas that I didn't see.

I must have gone to bed around a quarter after ten
I sleep so much these days, and so I like to be in bed by then
I must have read a while
The latest one by Marilyn French or something in that style
It's funny, but I had no sense of living without aim
The day before you came.

And turning out the lightI must have yawned and cuddled up for yet another night
And rattling on the roof
I must have heard the sound of rain
The day before you came.

This is originally by ABBA. Very recently, however Dad and I have been obsessively listening to a cover version by The Real Tuesday Weld. Beautiful it is.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Chhoto dadu died last night of a heart attack. He was in his 80's, my great-great uncle. He loved the song 'Bindass'. He would ask me what it meant, and was never wholly satisfied with the answer. He simply loved it.
He never let me get away with saying 'hello' and 'goodbye'. They each had to be accompanied by kisses.

He and his wife would come to the Gestapo Headquarters nearly every Sunday evening. They didn't always call in advance, they just rang the doorbell, certain the we were home. They lived quite a distance away, their bus-stop I remember, is called Bansdroni.
They would come and the Grandmother would whip up three different kinds of snacks to have with tea. Chhoto dadu and Phooldidu. How they would quarrel over everything, everything. He in his simple, humourous way, she with her nasal whine that drove me mad.

He is the second of my distant dadus to go. Toby dadu, a charming gentle man with a great love for drink was the first. Everytime we met, he would ask me how the boyfriend was. I would tell him there was no boyfriend. he would nod approvingly and say I must not commit to anyone without his approval.
In most cases, I find the men in my paternal line much more agreeable than the women. In Toby dadu's case, I think he would have been able to survive just fine if his wife had died before him. But otherwise, the women are far better able to handle such circumstances.

As dry and dispassionate as this post reads, I am...slightly numb. Death is no longer a stranger to me, but he remains strange. I am not heartbroken, not even intensely upset. I am...curious at my own reaction...or lack thereof. At my superior level of acceptance. I haven't shrugged it off and forgotten, I am watching it touch me.
I realize that I really only miss people I share my everydays with. There are some who I hardly see or talk to, but who are with me. Rare, starry creatures.
Chhoto dadu, I know would have accepted his fate with his usual humour. He rarely worried over things. Phooldidu herself isn't well, this won't be easy on her. For all that they quarrelled and whined....they were there for one another. For years and years.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

cry

'Nandigram embarrasses me,' writes Rohini.

I've been living out of Calcutta for almost three years now. Wherever I speak, write or think of it, it is my City. I say it with pride, i say it laughingly, sometimes with a touch of mockery or ruefulness.

I flew in to the city about two weeks back. Into the eye of Nandigram. I have been following it at a distance, but boy was I unprepared for the close-up.

I have lost faith in my City. My love for it never extended to its political parties. But I realize now that there is no such thing as being a-political. I belong to no party, but I have my ideals. And my ideals are ashamed and bruised.
My City, that is famous for its famous cholbe na cholbe na public is being forcefully silenced. In Nandigram, the people do not know whom they are serving. They are being hit from all sides. Brutally.

We the people are kept down by bandhs and threats. Those who speak out are jailed instantly.

I know my City by its roads and its people. Both appear vacant. I am disgusted, trite as it sounds. L.M. Montgomery once spoke of feeling ' a sort of nausea with life.' That is just how I feel.

War has always seemed such a faraway thing. I have read about it, analyzed, dispassionately distributed blame...
I am selfish. 9/11 horrified me. The bombing in Afghanistan, the Iraq war, I hated it all. But this closeness, knowing that within Bengal this is taking place is....
People are dying. Homes, land...everything is politicised, everyone wants a piece.

My City...how shall I speak of you now? When I am teased and called a Communist, simply because I am from Bengal...I shall cringe.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Party Games

Bengal is under indefinite strike. For anyone who has spent a few years in Kolkata, this is a commonplace occurance. A month without a bandh is a surprise in my City.

This time however, I am not apathetic.

Tis a tangled story will two or three political parties...all of whom are in for their own gains and no more. Innocent people have been killed in the scummy relations that exist between these parties.

The villages of Nandigram are being held at gunpoint, as are the villagers. That is all I understand. I could write of SEZ and the brutally distorted Communism and all the isms that Bengal upholds with such vigor. I like long words and I love using technical terms...but...there is a war raging very close to where I am. Helpless people are being held hostage, others are being mercilessly gunned down.
And it's all about party games.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Off to the City

Hi all. I'm off to Kolkata in about 6 hours, will be away till end-November. If you need me, mail me :) I'll post as regularly as I can, so keep reading.

Have a bright and safe Diwali.

Much love.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Of Linguistics and Anneishness


How thankful little Phil will be when all this examinating is over!

Examinating! I never heard of such a word.

Well, haven't I as good a right to make a word as anyone else??

Words aren't made, they grow.

From 'Anne of the Island' by L.M.
Montgomery







God! Somebody get me a bed quick!
Actually, I'm too zombied even to sleep. Transcription has taken its toll!
Yes indeedy, words aren't made. They aren't meant to be transcribed either I'm sure!

Tia cannot transcribe words. REPEAT! Tia CANNOT transcribe words! So why why why would they make me do it!!!!!

On the plus-side, I knew everything. I studied with a single-mindedness that was lovely. It's amazing when this one thing matters here and now, this moment, and all else falls away. I studied and mulled over notebooks till my body sank. And it was nice. The thing about English is...I've always been good at it. But it's been instinctive so far. I can interpret any text anytime and come up with ideas and concepts. My language is good because I read furiously. I've never had to prepare for an English exam per say.
Linguistics, being the technical part, is different. I have had lots and lots of new information to remember. And remember accurately. You can't get away with a clever turn of phrase in this paper. It's systematic, almost mathematical in its precision. So, I put in hard, academic effort. And liked it.
People so often look askance at me for studying English. As I told Boss the other day, why would I want to study anything else :)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Da-ba-dee-dah


Ok, so my head is crammed so full it's about to go KA-BOOM and spill linguistically accurate blood and little bits of syntactical brain everywhere.


I stayed up till 3 this morning working on my two Honours papers, and then had another session with P and V till lunchtime.

I'm supposed to be On A Break, but I'm in overdrive, so I'll probably just run on borrowed energy till 10 am Friday....and then get drunk.


P is my study-date extraordinaire. She's sexy and can bullshit real good, which is SO important during exam-time.


The good thing about being completely immersed in Freud and criticism and Semantics and Phonetics...is that you have no time to be disgruntled.

Yes I am dissatisfied with the way a few things are going, but the urgency of these two papers have kept me too dishevelled and excited to give them much thought.

Also, my basic instincts kick in like a thoroughbred during exams. I need constant food, constant fizzy drinks, constant sex...or constant sexual fantasies atleast, and constant bad jokes.




Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Reasons I don't need to buy joke-books

Reason 1

Mum: I got a perm and now I look like a palm-tree!

Reason 2

Dad: Hmm...I'm getting a double chin. (Looks round at me.) Heyyy! You're just like me..that means...YOU'RE GETTING ONE TOO!
Goes off gleefully.

Reason 3


E(solemnly): When you have kids Tia Didi, make sure you drink plenty of coconut water. My mother's friend told me that my mother drank lots when I was in her tummy and that's why I'm nice and plump.

Reason 4


N: Vidya Balan is a slut! Have you SEEN her body language?
Me: She isn't a slut. I like her. And what's wrong with being a slut? It just means she has a healthy sex-life.
N: PLEASE! She is totally the reason why Shahid and Kareena broke up.
Me: Whatever.
N: Sigh. WAAAAAH! I MISS RAHUL!
Me: Ok, let's get back to Vidya Balan.

Cyanide and Happiness, a daily webcomic
Cyanide & Happiness @ Explosm.net


I come up for air every two hours. Thank Goddess for comics.

Please read

http://rainbowraven.blogspot.com/2007/10/bhulbo-na.html

Thanks Rohini, for being so clear.
Bhulbo na in Bengali, is We shall not forget.
Let's remember that.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Happiness, thy name is...;)

Zara Gungunalein chalo
Zara Muskuraein chalo
Ajnabee sa ek chehra
Apna bana le chalo

Zara Gungunalein chalo
zara Muskuraein chalo
Zindagi se ek lamha
Phir se chura le chalo


Just plain old happiness for me. Could be that I wrote a paper on Organizational Behaviour and managed to bypass the entire section on 'Pay as Benefit.'
Maybe it's that I am madly, energetically in love. And don't go asking questions! Remember this is the girl who wanted to marry a furniture store, a book and now the Rudra-Veena.
Whatever it is, I am so glad this song is stuck in my head.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Quiet

Chrysalis heart and tender skin...

So writes Delia. The quiet around her is so complete, I'm afraid even to envy it.

I have been afraid of quiet for sometime now. It brings back old bruises. I make a lot of noise about my blessings but the bruises...they only come to be when I am alone.
I am looking forward to visiting my ashram again. Sitting on old, stone steps and letting my face grow wet with tears. There is always someone, some situation for which I must be brave. And so, my falterings must always be internal. It can be no other way, for there is no one, no one who I would go to with this hidden darkness. I pride myself on surviving the toughest, the most wrenching pain unaided, and it is this belief that has got me through. I face the world dry-eyed and proud, whether by dint of a smile, or the clenching of teeth. And every false smile, every setting of my jaw will catch up with me when there is quiet.
I need it. But I also need not to be alone with it. But that aloneness is of my choosing...

Thursday, October 18, 2007

God it makes me mad. Because I know how much it means to him. It;s almost like I'm trying to make up for what I couldn't give, for the years I didn't know how to keep in touch.
It's not fair to him. But hell, you know what! You don't get to choose your family. You work with what you're given. And you damn well give back.
The sooner you learn the better. Childhood is no longer easy, so let's stop pretending.

Sigh. I tear myself up when I'm angry.

Pujor golpo (Puja Stories)

Robindro Shetu (Howrah Bridge)



Photograph courtesy: http://www.theamberwolf.com/

I miss the rambunctiousness that I know is laughing over Kolkata. The dhak-dhol, the spontaneous stalls where you get jhal deem (spiced eggs) and chilléd Thaamsaap. The crowds, the lighting, the notun shari people can't afford. The perfect, utterly sentimental, overflowing-with-hospitality bangaliness of it all.

When I was a little girl and Mum was in advertising, we would go for the Asian Paints Sharod Shamyan. A competition for the best idol. The most creative, the most authentic etc. We would go joyriding in a rickety old van. Go to every pandal we could fit into the night. Eat at the dozens of wayside stalls that blossom suddenly during pujo. Come home at five in the morning.
Even before that, I have faint memories of my mama's old white Fiat. Till date, it is the most beautifully maintained car I have seen. Some eight of us crammed into it, me half-asleep and squashed into somebody's lap. Driving around, everybody well-fed but still hungry(you don't stop eating those last five days of Pujo), cracking terrible jokes and stopping at every phuchka stall.
I don't remember much more. The people whose laps I sleepily occupied are strangers now. The family I used to spend those bright, faraway nights with has now been stretched to proportions I can't always reach.
I'm sure life wasn't easy or simple even fifteen years ago. I know there were disturbances and under-the-surface darkness. But for those few days, people let go. They ate too much, talked and talked and talked, laughed over everything and took spontaneous decisions to go looking for street-food at one in the morning.




Happy Pujo to all of you who were there.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Mmmm-Hmmm

You don't look twenty-two, you look much younger.
You don't think twenty-two, you think much older.
You don't live twenty-two...

Gee, I wonder what a less unusual twenty two year old would be all about,

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Tale of Chocolate Pudding, the Mahabharat and a Septagenerian Birthday Party

I have a very good motto.

When you are depressed beyond Sylvia Plath, do an Ogden Nash.

It's funny how you think you want to end something
And then you don't.
Don't want to think or to end it, I mean.
What do you do when you are desperately trying to end something
And you end up sitting in together in a room
Drinking tea and eating chocolate pudding and
Watching ancient epics made into terribly dramatic television mini-series
Do you say,'Umm...thanks for the tea and pudding, and by the way I don't think we should keep in touch?'
What happens when you are desperately trying to end something
And there is a septagenerian birthday party to attend
And you start thinking, 'Oh shit, what if the septagenerian hates you for this!'
God knows you don't need any more septagenerians mad at you
What if the something you want to end
Has its birthday next day
Do you pull out presents and say, 'Happy Birthday, and it's all dead?'
Do you pop out party hats and yell, 'This is your day and I meant to tell you, we're strangers from this day on?'
It is just so much easier to try and try
Or why not say, 'So what if the thing I'm trying to end makes my flesh warm! The thing never shuts up and wouldn't know Sensitivity if it became Nudity.'
Do you sneak into Reverse with your headlights dimmed?
All the way back into your fantasies of bursting in and yelling, 'QUIT WALTZING IN AND OUT OF MY LIFE YOU VICTIM OF A PERMANENTLY MALFUNCTIONING CEREBRAL CORTEX!'
Honestly, it's funny
how you think you want to end something
And then you don't.
Want to think
Or end it.

Copyright: Pomegranate Nash, 2007





feeling very small.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Opium days

I've been wanting to write a contented post for a while. So, I've been waiting for the right frame of mind. I rave and rant so much on my blog...just for variety, let me be quietly happy.

I've just finished the first of my internal papers, and it went rather well.
The last couple of weeks have been hectic. Vernen was here, so we made as much time with him as we could. There have been birthdays, hectic socializing and much drunken debauchery.
I attended my very first live concert in Indian classical music. Ran out on a dinner in my own home to watch Shubha Mudgal, Ustad Bahauddin Dagar and Vidvan T.M. Krishna perform.
And it was GOOD.
Shubha Mudgal was so incredibly energetic! Her whole body sings. And I could make out that she was happy. She was playful and glowing, just like her music.
Ustad Bahauddin Dagar played the Rudra Veena. I'd never seen one before, and I have to tell you, it is the most beautiful instrument ever! Just look at it!





I love all string instruments, but this is by far the most Yin! Rounded and long and agile and deep all at once. And full of old stories and secrets.

The Ustad himself was very intense. Even his hair was intense. He played slow and concentrated music. Music I would have appreciated much more had it not been 2 am. I am not used to music that demands so much from the listener.

But the most potent poppy in the field was Vidvan T.M Krishna and even more, his accompanying violinist Vidvan R.K. Shri Ramkumar. That violin had a voice of its own. It flew and dipped and wove shimmering shapes. It followed the singer possessively, challenging, overtaking, sometimes simply walking by his side. I don't know Shri Ramkumar has in his hands...but i want some of it!

So there I was, from 9 in the night to 5 the next morning. Ok, Weed and I sneaked out halfway for coffee and Coke, but we needed nourishment!
I don't think I want to understand this music. I don't want to listen to it and see Malhar and Todi. At least...not yet. It boosts my mind and leaves my body drained. I feel my skin straining to absorb. And I like the strain.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

RANT

You know, i try! I really really do! Read texts written by shitheads which are recommended only because they have some link with the university.
Texts which blithely place fine arts 'above' mechanical arts and leave no room for argument.
I am not a 'literary' person. I love reading Red-Hot Mills and Boons, I adore chick-lit! Yes I also love the Brontes and Emily Dickinson and I can declaim most of Macbeth without peeking at the text. I read Toni Morrison and Meg Cabot within an hour of each other. I have no snobbery where the written word goes.
But, I refuse to read smugly written, patronizing textualized shit! Written by dried-up self-important old idjits. There is no scope for a literature student who reads such texts. There is no thought, no reason, no imagination...NOTHING! Just long sentences and a jumble of words put together to look important!
BLOODY HELL!

Monday, October 08, 2007

Images of Baramati


















You Owe Me Nothing

I'll give you countless amounts of outright acceptance if you want it
I will give you encouragement to choose the path that you want if you need it
You can speak of anger and doubts your fears and freak outs and I'll hold it
You can share your so-called shame filled accounts of times in your life and I won't judge it
(and there are no strings attached to it)
You owe me nothing for giving the love that I give
You owe me nothing for caring the way that I have
I give you thanks for receiving it's my privilege
And you owe me nothing in return
You can ask for space for yourself and only yourself and I'll grant it
You can ask for freedom as well or time to travel and you'll have it
You can ask to live by yourself or love someone else and I'll support it
You can ask for anything you want anything at all and I'll understand it
(and there are no strings attached to it)
You owe me nothing for giving the love that I give
You owe me nothing for caring the way that I have
I give you thanks for receiving it's my privilege
And you owe me nothing in return
I bet you're wondering when the next payback shoe will eventually drop
I bet you're wondering when my conditional police will force you to cough up
I bet wonder how far you have now danced you way back into debt
This is the only kind of love as I understand it that there really is
You can express your deepest of truths even if it means I'll lose you and I'll hear it
You can fall into the abyss on your way to your bliss I'll empathize with
You can say that you have to skip town to chase your passion I'll hear it
You can even hit rock bottom have a mid-life crisis and I'll hold it
(and there are no strings attached)
You owe me nothing for giving the love that I give
You owe me nothing for caring the way that I have
I give you thanks for receiving it's my privilege
And you owe me nothing in return

-Alanis Morisette

Thursday, October 04, 2007

SCREAM!!!!!!!




Hell is other people

Jean-Paul Satre


Hell is other people when you have PMS

Pomegranate

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Courting Disaster

Pmgrnt: Hello are you Disaster?

Dster: You seriously want to know???

P: Yes I do. I've been looking everywhere for you. I really need you in my life

D: Err...I am in your life. In those overgrown misshapen nails, the sticky feeling in your skin, the constant need to eat....

P: You make me sound pregnant.

D: I am sorry. I'm not known to spread sunshine! And in a way, you are impregnated. You're swollen up with a few things you oughta let go of! Y'know, like they say when you're in labour? PUSH! PUSH!

P: Look, quit the counselling. I'm not trying to get rid of you, I'm trying to have a mature, committed relationship here! I like you for the nights i spend sobbing and the constant resentment you build in me!

D: Lady, I ain't the forever kind. I come and go as I please.

P: Yes well I'm not giving up on you!

D (edging away): maybe, y'know, you could go see my brother. He might be of some help.

P: A brother??? Who is he?

D: Name's Pandemonium.

P: I do not want Pandemonium!! Pandemonium! He is loud and show-offy! I can't be passive and masochistic with him around!

D: I really need to go. I'm...due...at...a gay bar real soon! See you!

P: NOOOOO...COME BACK!!


THE END

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Tai to!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Going Away

Distance is my eyes on

the clock

Watching your sleep-time
your time to

lean back into pillows and
rest your ears into

the hoary voices of long ago.

Friday, September 28, 2007

BLOODY HELL!

we all live with certain ideas of who we are, what we're like. How we appear to others. Myths,most of them. We change too constantly to have permanent personalities.

Oh but it hurts when the myth blows up in your face.

It's happened with me very recently and made me feel like an amoeba. I am the oldest in a certain group. I cannot give thoughtlessness as an excuse. Is this where maturity begins?

I think selflessness is the product of the best kind of self-confidence. The kind where you don't need to prove that you are important.

It is love when you cry numb tears, knowing that a single misthought on your part hurt them. It's terrible when you've been madly loving towards them and all of a sudden it all seems to be show.

I’m just going to stop writing now. And btw, I’m really bad at professional relationships SO THERE!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Bugger!

Given a choice, would I want to learn to distance, or to love better?
Do they cancel one another out?

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Benny's Day Out

I bought a dress! A DRESS! A D-R-E-S-S!!!!!!!
Why is that such a Big Deal? I'll tell ya, ya bum! Tis because I have not bought, worn, owned a dress in almost fourteen years! I'm Pants Girl! I sit on floors with my legs crossed in bookshops, I put my feet up in cafes and restaurants....and you can't do that in a dress!
Yesterday, however M and I were wandering the shops...and we went into this little boutique. The dress was hanging up behind some others. It wasn't Love at First Sight. I didn't gasp, clutch my chest and go 'That's The One!!' I rarely get excited about clothes. In fact, I rarely buy clothes at all. With a mother in Europe, a father hopping across oceans every two weeks, an aunt in New York...well...clothes just come my way.
So anyway, I showed the dress to M and she insisted I try it on. The trial room was a tiny alcove with curtains all around...very Yin methought.
I tried on the dress. Even in the overhead fluorescent light, it looked good. Fitted well and didn't make me look like a kid wearing her mother's dress. M fell in love with me straightaway and was all 'You HAVE to wear it to the party tomorrow! It will have Good After-Effects!' (No I won't explain what she meant!)

So...I bought it. Forked over the first of my Pujo money, the lady at the counter put the dress in a brown paper bag..and I was the owner of a dress. After fourteen years.
All the way home, I kept peeking into the bag. Like the dress was going to disappear, like it wasn't real! It wasn't for me. Pants Girl could wear quirky makeup, colourful earrings and slip-off chappals.
Dress Girl couldn't. She had to be precise, linear...and wear heels!
I came home. took the dress out of its bag and put it on. I hate trial room mirrors anyway. The outfit has to look good in my mirror, else it's not worth it.
It did. I'm not good at using phrases like 'It gathered around her waist and fell to her knees in flowing, feminine lines':)
But I'm happy I let Pants Girl crack a little.





My day was just full of Big Events. After shopping, M and I went to Malaka Spice and ate sausage satay, grilled prawns and 2 glasses of wine each. Then we went to a tattoo studio to look at designs. M took one look at the studio (and the artist) and turned pale. I was more composed. I looked at designs and decided on a hummingbird. before sneezing copiously all over the design-books. Now I just need to save up enough to get it done. I msgd Mum about it. She called back. This is how the conversation went:
Me: Hello.

Mum: YOU'LL GET AIDS!!

Me(patiently): Mum, I'm not getting it done today. And I won't get AIDS. I've checked out the place.

Mum: But...but...it'll hurt! And it'll swell up and you'll get fever. AND AIDS!

Me: It doesn't hurt all that much. Really, I'll be ok.

Mum: Oh... so what kind of tattoo are you getting done?

Me: A hummingbird I think.

Mum(gleefully): A hummingbird has strong sexual connotations! Hey you know what? When you meet the Love of Your Life, get his initial done on your inner thigh!

Me: MUM! That's gross! I'm eating lunch!

Mum(cheerfully): I think it's an idea. Ok, I'll call you later!

Some kids hide their doings from parents for fear they'll disapprove. I'm afraid to tell mine of my doings...because they top me every time!


In the evening, S and I went shopping for a birthday present for his little sister. Traffic was bad and S cribbed about every person on the road. 'Some people never get over their slowness.'(to a bullock-cart) 'Some people can never make up their minds.'(to a cyclist on the left who suddenly decided he wanted to go right)
He bought his present, on my recommendation. I still have to get mine, and between us, my stepmum and I have exactly 75 rupees in the house! Sheesh!
After this S and i went out for Lemon Cheesecake and Zebra Torte at a lovely bakery-cafe where the ceilings are so low, even Miniature Me has to stoop. They're obviously sensitive to the feelings of short people, those ceilings are designed to make us feel tall! In the midst if all this my stepmum kept calling and asking 'are yall holding hands?'and giggling.
Anyway, so we ate and talked of Colleen McCullough, my impending tattoo, against which he took a strongly right-wing position, how I'm obsessed with him, whether or not we should go to another bakery who make divine blueberry cheesecake etc. After this we came back to my house, watched bits and pieces of Pakeezah, he borrowed some jazz cd's for his Guruji and a cd of Genesis 'because the name sounds nice' and then left.
It took about two minutes for me to start missing him.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Healing



Dearest Maddie

How is it that every time I visit your blog, I find something to rejuvenate myself!
Thank you for allowing the sharing of your discoveries.
Love always

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Things have been busy. Books, books and more books. Boxes of em, shelves of em, other-shelves-where-they-shouldn't-be of books!

It's at an end now, and I really need to get some work done for college...and future college :)

Methinks the Oddball is angry with me. He's going away next Sunday...I don't want us to part cold. Please don't be angry Oddball. I'm not sure what I did...so can we clear it out?

Have been having happy, tease-and-tease-back little times with Dad. I confessed to Boss the other day that he is my Crib Partner. He may only give 'hmph'as a response, but he always always listens.

House stuffed full. Lots of adda happening. I like family gossip sometimes :) :)

Friday, September 07, 2007

Reflections on a Technical Experience~A Totally Random and Absurd Play

Characters-Poorva, Shama, Boss, Tia and Jahnavi

Tia: But it's all GLASS!

Jahnavi: Oh look, that building has the coolest illusion! It's like...you disappear, then re-appear..

Shama: On our scale of 1 to 10, no guy even made it to zero!

Poorva: I have never worked so hard in my life!

Tia: Black and white and beige and GLASS!

Shama: What's pink and long and thin?

Tia: Can I spray-paint the glass-panes???

Shama: What's black and long and thin?

Jahnavi: My calculator's cooler than yours! BLEH!

Poorva: I dashed into this guy.

Shama: What's white and long and thin?

Tia: Look, you can see your reflection in the FLOOR!

Poorva: And then he was standing behind me in line and GHOOROFYING!

Tia and Jahnavi: Shama's SMILING at him! oooohhh!

All: I'm aching all over!!!!

Tia: I destroyed one of their umbrellas. Oh no wait! It was already broken!

Shama: The loos upstairs are green and purple!

Jahnavi: Imagine working here everyday!

Shama: Can I just run to the loo?

Tia: I have come to the conclusion that nobody here does any work!

Boss: There's nobody here over forty!

Shama: Can I just run to the loo?

Boss: Those mops can't possibly help in cleaning!

Tia: My calculator has an auto-check! YAY!

Boss: I want that lady cleaning the railings in my new house!

Shama: Can I just run to the loo?

Tia: Why would anyone want to do it in an elevator??? Horrible cramped space with fluorescent lighting.

Shama: You can't do ANYTHING in these elevators! they're GLASS!

Boss: Housekeeping is a very Yin thing.

All: I wonder where Subway is!

Poorva: I got told off for wearing jeans! I said, 'I am not amongst you all!' But she said that jeans were only allowed on Fridays!

Shama: No, it's ok! I have no special attachment to the elevator.

Tia: No, don't get chips! Director aa raha hai! kam par jayega!

Shama: You know how many houses I shifted??? Moving boxes is like childhood memories for me!

THE END

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Mulshi



River Babies





The Wet Crow Look


Disclaimer: No we weren't drunk...yet!

Yo no le adoro como

I do not love you as if you were salt-rose, or topaz,
or the arrow of carnations the fire shoots off.
I love you as certain dark things are to be loved,
in secret, between the shadow and the soul.

I love you as the plant that never blooms
but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers;
thanks to your love a certain solid fragrance,
risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body.

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where.
I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride;
so I love you because I know no other way

than this: where I does not exist, nor you,
so close that your hand on my chest is my hand,
so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep.

~Pablo Neruda

One Art

The art of losing isn't hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster,

Lose something every day. Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel. None of these will bring disaster.

I lost my mother's watch. And look! my last, or
next-to-last, of three beloved houses went.
The art of losing isn't hard to master.

I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
I miss them, but it wasn't a disaster.

-- Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
I love) I shan't have lied. It's evident
the art of losing's not too hard to master
though it may look like
(Write it!) a disaster.


-Elizabeth Bishop

I wish...



Comic courtesy: www.comicspage.com

Ummm...




ColorQuiz.comBenny took the free ColorQuiz.com personality test!

"Wants to make a favorable impression and be reward..."


Click here to read the rest of the results.


Sunday, August 26, 2007

An Eye on England, Sitaphal and Love

I used to love the custard-apple as a child. In Bengal, it is known as the aata. It is one of the ugliest fruits in appearance, with scaly black-green skin and hard, black seeds inside. One must cut it in half and scoop out of the pale flesh of the fruit around the seeds. Usually, we just spoon everything into our mouth and spit the seeds out.
I lost patience with this tedious fruit. You couldn't make a milkshake out of it and pour it down quickly. It is a sit-down-Sunday-breakfast fruit, requiring spoon and plate and time.

Dadu sent me some aatas yesterday. All the way from Kolkata.
Dadu is 77 now, and forgets a lot of things. For instance, that this is not the season for aata. I imagine him out for a walk, passing the fragrant fruit-stalls at Jadubabu's Bajar, seeing the aatas, and simply remembering that I used to love them. That, for him was enough reason to buy them.
When I called this morning to tell him I had eaten one of the aatas for breakfast, he read me an article on rising crime among college-age people in England. 'This happens mainly in industrial towns,'he said soberly, implying his disapproval of my applying to universities in such towns.

S once said to me, 'Grandparents always have a lot of affection for their grandchildren.'

I thought this too simple to integrate into my life. Where I am, family and blood is not always the same thing.
But thinking about it last night, thinking of the three aatas curled up in the fruit-bowl, I figured that maybe S had a point.
Always having affection isn't simple. Not at all.

Thursday, August 23, 2007



Mostly, in my life, writing has blotted out tears,
sometimes even taken their place

Sometimes there are pieces of my life too sharp to let out
even through writing

That's when i cry.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Say Hello to Mother Goose

Why isn't there a Chicken Soup for the Big Sister's Soul?
Lord knows I could use one.

They never told me siblinghood was so difficult. I wasn't to know it would be so close to the bones of motherhood. So fraught with love that I would sit myself down every time I yelled at him and think I was terrible.
That if he didn't eat, I'd worry he was sickening for something.

Oh and the self-blame.

I screamed at him today and daid he was slow...it's all my fault if he gets a complex.

Why didn't I make him sleep in the afternoon, no wonder if he was sleepy and hardly ate dinner!

Every meal, all I tell him is eat! eat! eat! When he grows up, what will he remember...a sister who fed him all five food-groups or one who heard him out and talked back?


Nutrients or good conversation
Discipline~ a little, a lot, too damn much???
Let him get out there and figure things out for himself while I stop breathing till he's home safe...or just let go.

Yes, it's funny. I'm twenty-two and I'm raising a child. He isn't orphaned or neglected...I just do it because anything less is too little. I berate myself for not doing it right by him. For screaming too much. Saying too little. Not answering his endless questions.
I make funny faces sometimes. Go to pick up his report card and talk back to his teacher. Fall asleep and wake up too late to get his homework done.
What's really amazing is...that he never questions it..

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Palm Line

Where are we, the two of us? Between us is
no blood, no named ties
a storied past and

quiet places on our bodies we visited as us.

I watch you unfold
wave by wave, finger by finger
place by place

I don't understand if we have come back
Or if you have

Have I come where it must be you and no other?

I give my love like the sky
And then
I give my love for you
Like secret red flowers
Set afloat on grey waters and
Those grey waters alone

Where we are now will be lost
These words will change and
our bodies rise and fall

I'll leave a little of my hands
In the dust around you
In the place you feel safe

Any place you are
I am
we are
I can love you

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Central Park, NYC




Photographs courtesy: Eeshaan Singh Basu, age 7.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Know what's really annoying!

When people expect you to be an adult, and then treat you like a child.

Tentative exam dates have been harassed out of HOD. Mid-october till the 30th. Which means....I GET TO SEE MUM IN TIME FOR HER 50TH BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!
Now I have to think of the present...

The Oddball née the Router turned 18 yesterday. Twas worth sitting on the floor at Landmark going, 'ok, so what reminds us of him?', compromising my reputation in Dorabjee, having to buy painkillers, planning road-blocks, and risking my life on an eight-minute bike-ride I shall never forget. Worth every bit to hear him say it was a good birthday. And seeing him dance!
I'm sure Weed will agree :/
Oh but it was fun primping and having discussions with Weed and RS on blue clothes, face masks and make-up. And dancing hilariously and getting high on blue soda!
I hope he finds his present(s) useful. GRIN!

M's birthday on Sunday. We've got a big day planned. I'm hoping it all works out ok. Fingers crossed.
J is coming next month to play at the RockPub fest. Looking forward to seeing him. Also, E will be playing his first piano concert soon! That will bring back memories :)
The Gestapo is coming at the end of the month, but I have PLANS of...handling her! MWAHAHAHAHAH!
See yall!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Days and seconds

I've been thinking about this post. Things have been...strange, amazing, scary, full of love...I was wondering how to pull it all into a post..

Applications for university are beginning. I have essays to write and re-write, dozens of enquiries to send, recommendations to wrangle out of people...

Dad will be shifting to The Sweet Homeland in a couple of months. I shall miss the guy. I mean,I'm the only Equal he has. Sigh. This whole International Parents thing is really really tough at times.
But it's made me love them a lot more...cos we're all really lovable in small doses. Living with each other on a regular basis doesn't work for any of us.

I attended a wonderfully stimulating writing workshop last month. A million thanks to Jamie, Jenny and Sameer. I have to send essays to them as well so...I'm writing properly after a long time.

College is killing me! I do not understand Linguistics. I do not want to learn Phonetics or Speech Acts! I have to write a paper on all of this in two months time...and I AM DYING!

S came over and cooked for us. Yummy fried rice and chicken. He stayed half the night. We talked, fought, listened to music, I cried, he lingered...
This is our forever.

Monday, August 13, 2007

The Little Scientist







My seven-year-old brother made these :) couldn't resist putting them up.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

sigh(hahaha)sigh

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Some days I don't know
why I was born.
Not since I've seen you!
The birds settle down in the field
to eat seeds in fall.
But I cant settle, there's no soft white
petal under my wind,
(Not since I've seen you!)

Pero da Ponte

Discovered on Maddie's blog :)

Thank you, you beautiful person.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Lurrrve it!

Monday, July 30, 2007

A Song For All Lovers






Imagine the morning no longer alone
The arms of another, a place to belong
No longer the struggle, no longer the night
And ever becoming in the quickening light

To see in the darkness, to listen within
To answer in kindness, to ever begin
To ever be gentle, to always be strong
To walk in the wonder, to live in the song

In a place of enchantment where the wild things are known
Will the future remember when the lovers are gone?


-John Denver

The painting is by Marc Chagall. Much affection and gratitude to The Router who brought me back in touch with him...

Thursday, July 26, 2007

I'm in Writing Mode. My workshop ended today and i have a Ferris Wheel in my head with about eight-four thousand riders screaming to be let off on paper or blank document.
I love being crazy. I love going over the top and stuttering in excitement and loving people till they're gasping to be set free. I sometimes think that maybe I should slow down, and I think I will, just to see how it feels but I love this gleeful headiness.

Sparkles

An ex-boyfriend-and-dear-friend asking when he can come over and cook for us

Dad asking me in a weird hissy whisper if i have cigarettes


My baby brother running up and hugging me from behind.


Mum's non-veg jokes.

Watching E while he sleeps and bending over to kiss his darling head.

Writing a long letter to a prospective new friend :)


Late-night calls from Neha where we cackle with laughter about everything.

The rare, sweet smiles and straight looks the Router gives me...

Sitting with M in silence, then suddenly pulling a terrible face, making us both giggle.

Sitting in my balcony, watching rain and getting splashed.

late-night movies with Stepmum

A favourite song suddenly on the radio.

Sitting on walls or window seats and dangling my legs.

Trying a new soap or shower-gel or shampoo.

Being near enough someone I love, not touching, but inhaling their scent.

Eating chips and reading Bridget Jones!

Sitting on tnt steps...any steps really, I love staircases.

Walks

Smoke rising from incense sticks

passionate people

Watching 'You've Got Mail' a squillion times

....

So what makes you sparkle :)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Oh What a Falling There Was

I can't believe it's all over. All the planning, all that stress, all my frantic attempts at reassuring Weed that all would go well...but twas all so completely worth it!

The Event was marvellous! From our waltzing into Pizza Hut wearing robes, to the Router and I sitting on tnt steps acting drunk at 5:45 am, to us leaping up and down outside $%(^$^#$(&#$ showing off our fresh, new copies of HP before theirs had come...twas a night of madness!

The venue looked great thanks to Ninad's brilliance and Weed's lovely lovely posters. The participants were bubbling with enthusiasm...the Router and Shri-Can't had us rolling all over in Elocution and JAM. You guys were really really great!
I was totally impressed by how well-informed the kids were! The Group Discussion would probably never have ended had we not stopped it. Our Petites team tnt-ians were adorable in Gryffindor robes and enjoyed themselves thoroughly, despite having but the barest idea of HP World.
The Quiz went off wonderfully.(yes Nahar, I know I've told you that about twenty times, but so what!) Again, the participants were impressive. Tis amazing how deep theý have entered into Potter World. The Router reprised his role as Quizmaster, with the result that most women over twenty-five( and a few below 25 who kept quiet!) were raving over him before the first round of questions was over! Twas a clear, well-organized, totally committed effort. Pat on the back to you :)
Once the Event was over, we started pushing Boss to get to the distributors already! Finally managed to get her going and we all went back to tnt to open the Store and set up for a long day. Sat about in various stages of drowsiness, till at 6:15, the Qualis drew up...and we all jumped up and started screaming and shoving each other about trying to get to the boxes in the back.
Tape was hacked at, flaps wrenched open...and suddenly....it was the Moment!
Black-and-red, about 600 pages, hardbound, glowing with newness and holding a million secrets!
More impatience ensued. We grabbed a copy each, gazed, hugged, kissed the cover and got ourselves billed.
THEN...sleeplessness and euphoria having mingled and risen to dangerous levels, we jumped into the Qualis, ULM at the wheel and drove to that-bookshop-which shall-never-be-named-on-this-blog.
It was barely open, people wating outside for their HP's. We got off, jumped up and down outside showing off our new books...much to the chagrin of the poor watchman who ran towards us, then halted confusedly, not sure if he wanted to take on this bunch of wild-eyed hooligans! Damage done, we came back to tnt.
Many thanks to ULM for being the Greatest Sport ever!


....and so we transformed one room in a nearby club into a new world and made magic and madness such as Rowling herself would've been proud of.
I love the book. To quote the Router, 'I loved it before it had even released!'
But the build-up was just as amazing.
And this kind of crazed love and enthusiasm is what keeps tnt going...
Thank you, all the witches and wizards, the pixies and elves...all with your own unique magic, your love for tnt and Harry Potter, for creating this night.

Rash reactions to the rash

Dad: It's an allergy!

Me: But i've never been allergic to anything, ever!

Dad(happily): ooh, maybe you're allergic to air. then you'll have to wear a space-suit all the time. Hey, then maybe you'll get married cos the groom won't be able to see you!

E(gravely): Baba, of course she's not allergic to air. (pauses) There's only thing she's allergic to. (pauses)
SUNLIGHT!

Disclaimer: My dad loves me very much! I am just off to my doctor for more reactions!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Tagged

by Insanerambler and Jahnavi

200. My Middle Name Is:
Don't have one. if I did, twould be...The Vague

199. I was born in:
Calcutta

197. My cell phone company is:
Idea / Nokia 6300

196. My eye color is:
brown

195. My shoe size is:
5

194. My ringtone is:
Rock

193. My height is:
5 ft 1"

192. I am allergic to:
Trying to find out. My dad's hoping it's air so I'll have to wear a space-suit!

190. I live in:
Pune, for now.

189. The last book I read:
the 7th Harry Potter book!

188. My bed is:
BIG

187. Are you happy with your life?
ecstatic!

186. Last person to send you a text message:
Kavita

185. Ever smoked a cigarette?
Yes

184. AIM or MSN or Yahoo! or gtalk:
msn and gtalk

183. Do you email:
yes

182. How is the weather today:
pleasant, slightly humid

181. Do you have your wisdom teeth:
yes

180. Ever been to Disney World:
Yes

179. My favorite holiday is:
Durga Pujo/Christmas

178. The perfect kiss is:
unexpected

177. The last three cds I bought:
OST of Music & Lyrics, OST of The Lion King 2 and The Greatest Hollywood Musicals.

176. Last song that made you cry:
naam gum jayega from Kinara

170. What did you do yesterday?
attended a Linguistics lecture, ate grilled cheese sandwich, attended Creative Writing Workshop, ate chips,picked up Sameer's present, listened to old music and slept.

DO YOU BELIEVE IN:

142. Love at first sight?
sure.

141. Luck?
yes

140. Fate?
yes

139. God?
yes

138. Aliens?
yes

137. Heaven?
no

136. Hell?
no

135. Ghosts?
yes

134. Horoscopes?
no

133. Soul mates?
yes

WHICH IS BETTER:

129. Hugs or Kisses?
both

127. Phone or Online?
phone if it's late-night, online...yes...but I'd rather meet

126. Redheads or Black Hair?
black hair

125. Blondes or Brunettes?
brunettes

124. Hot or Cold?
hot

123. Summer or winter?
summer

122. Sun or Rain?
rain

121. Chocolate or Vanilla?
vanilla

120. Night or Morning?
night

119. Oranges or Apples?
oranges

120. straight or curly hair?
both

LAST TIME I:

101. Saw someone I hadn't seen in a while?
Sunday

100. Cried in front of someone:
Gosh...sometime in 2005

90. Who is the ditziest person you know:
Me

89. Who makes you laugh the most:
Pia,Mum,E,Alisha

87. The last movie you saw:
Pother Panchali

82. The thing I don't understand:
boundaries, why I can only do MA in one subject

80. The most unsatisfactory answer I've ever received:
hmmm, I see

79. The things I plan on doing this season is:
Applying for my Master's, travelling a bit, writing seriously

74. The thing I'm looking forward to most:
Moving on from Pune

73. The thing I'm not looking forward to doing:
all the paperwork and hassle

72. Today:
I'm smiling

71. This summer:
was full of travel and affection.

70. This week:
is going slow

62. The person who knows the most about me:
Neha, Shakun, M, Mum-Dad, Boss

61. The person who can read me the best is:
Neha-Shakun-M and Mum-Dad.

60. The most difficult thing to do is:
let it be.

54. First time you had a crush:
I was 11.

52. Last time someone said what you were thinking:
M, yesterday.

50. What is your dream job:
writing, singing

49. First job:
tnt

46. I hope:
I get independent real fast!

45. The worst sound in the world is:
whining

44. The person that makes me cry the most:
umm....me I guess. And some beautiful writers.

35. Florida or Hawaii:
Hawaii

33. My favorite piece of clothing:
my white cotton pyjama-pants

30. My friends are:
totally wow!

29. My computer:
is dying!

28. The school I go to:
Fergusson College

22. The all-time best movie is:
I dunno...You've Got Mail, Casablanca??....oh sod it, too many!

21. The all-time best thing in the world is:
Love, privacy, independence

20. Last thing you ate:
Chicken curry with roti and mixed pickle

19. The most annoying thing ever is:
too many questions, being ignored

18. The most annoying person you know is:
The Gestapo

17. I lose all respect for people that/who:
whine, try to categorise everything, make forced conversation

16. The movies I have cried at are:
Casablanca, An Affair to Remember, KKHH, 15 Park Avenue

15. Last phone call:
Mum

14. TV shows you watch:
The OC, The Simpsons, Desperate Housewives, Ugly Betty, Friends, Doogie Houser MD, The Wonder Years

13. Last friend you hung out with?
M and Shreya

12. I want to be:
less ofa procrastinator

11. The worst pain I ever felt:
shrug...there's been plenty of crazy pain

9. My room is:
my sanctuary

8. My favorite celebrity is:
JK Rowling

6. My favorite colors:
red, black, sea-green

5. My weakness is:
laziness

3. Who broke your heart:
There are definite scars, but my heart is whole and strong

2. One thing that makes you feel great is:
laughter, being wanted

1. Love and the potential of being hurt OR never loved but never hurt?
love and potential always

Thursday, July 19, 2007

I could scream! Coolly and with the utmost joy kill them! I'm not considering that they're kids. I don't care if they have lousy parents and a 'bad upbringing.' I will not have some sub-human little freaks torture my brother every day.
And what are we,the family supposed to do? Say 'it's a boys' school, such things happen'
WHAT THE FUCK!!!
Where the hell is it written that boys must be animalistic bullies in school! I'm supposed to watch a six-year-old come home crying every day AND SHRUG IT OFF BECAUSE IT'S A BOYS SCHOOL??? Call me overprotective. Accuse me of making him a sissy. I don't mind a fair fight. I'd cheer him on, teach him a few moves! BUT THESE COWARDLY LITTLE BASTARDS ARE OLDER AND BIGGER AND THEY KNOW IT! They bloody humiliate him and the STUPID parents do nothing!
WHO THE FUCK MADE UP THIS BOYS SCHOOL CULTURE!
I can't say anything to the little creeps because E must not be called a softie. And he won't retaliate because they are older....and well...there are two or three of them. You talk to parents...they deny that their precious little boy could possibly do such things...or they laugh it off!
Tomorrow, their precious little brat will be beating his wife and sleeping around...and they'll still react the same way!
Teach your poisonous little scumbag a few manners Parents!
I don't care if this is the world today. I don't give a bloody piece of shit!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Ok, so I am on a no-chip diet. Starting today. I've made pretty good progress. There were rows of Lays in E2, and I wasn't even tempted. I walked right past our local All-Purpose Store and the supermarket without even looking. This area is to chip-addicts what I am to self-restraint. Buuuttt...I shall triumph :)

The movie is crowded. Things happen all at once, events slide into one another. Even Sirius' death is treated far too lightly. Considering its monumental importance in Harry's life, methinks it could have been heightened much more.
Performances are good. Imelda Staunton gets under the skin of Dolores Umbridge! From the hem hem, to the falsely sweet laugh to the fluttery way of speaking, she's done a wonderful job. Helena Bonham Carter plays Bellatrix Lestrange. She looks like a cross between Catwoman and and a Soho hooker fallen on hard times but she is captivating. Bellatrix's complete devotion to Voldemort, her mad joy at his return and her unflinching sadism are portrayed well. Evanna Lynch as Luna Lovegood and Natalia Tena as Tonks are truly enjoyable.

The growing relationship between Ron and Hermione is a high point in the movie. Tisn't flashy or especially highlighted. Instead, director David Yates makes sure that their relationship rings true to their adoloscence. The little, creeping tenderness-es, the compliment that means so much, this was by far my favourite relationship in the movie.
The end is rather nice. Harry's grief at losing Sirius, his realization that he 'has something that Voldemort doesn't...something worth fighting for,' endear him to the audience. Keeping in mind that most of the audience have been following Harry's life since he was eleven years old, tis bittersweet to watch him grow up.
Tis a testament to J.K. Rowling's writing power that her character arouses such affection in her readers.
Tisn't easy to make a movie of the books. There's too much struggle between detail and time, too many nuances that can be tapped into only in 700-odd pages.
Hats off to David Yates for a thoroughly creative effort.

This has been a week of meetings. Coffee dates with Alisha and Tripuri, an accidental meeting with Rekha and a much-awaited, much planned meeting with the Rambler who is as prettiful as I remember :)
And a here-I-go-shooting-my-mouth-off-again meeting with the Router, which he really did not deserve. I mean, somebody who calls to tell me that a g&r video with half-naked Axle and Slash is airing on VH1 is someone I should hang on to :)

Thursday, July 12, 2007

I didn't know it was possible to love a body so much
Till

I saw
the deep lines etched into your neck

only just below your hairline

your body

memorized

in the spaces between my fingers.

ee cummings

1. somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look will easily unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously)her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully ,suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility:whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands






2. i carry your heart with me


i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
i fear
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it's you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you

here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Wheeeee!

Yay yay yay! We've got HP tickets for the first show on Friday! Weed deserves 39875 hugs for sleepwalking to the advance-tickets counter the minute it opened!
Haven't been down to tnt to look at the Very Cute Broomstick yet. Tis lovely that someone is so HP-crazy. He's also made a Quidditch pitch I hear. Now that is the epitome of Huggableness!

Okie, I is off to Snoozy Town.

Much love to yall.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

From the Desk of Benny Blue, T.Y.B.A. Student!

Kind of swamped, but tis a good kind of exhaustion. Continuous lectures from 7:30 to 12:30 and then a creative non-fiction workshop from 1 till 3.
And what lectures! Honours this year is almost entirely technical, with one paper in Linguistics and Orientation and the other in Literary Criticism. Linguistics is very interesting, or would be if we didn't have the world's Most Archaic Professor! The guy never steps out of the books. You ask him about the relevance of sign language and body language...HE SHUFFLES! Try asking him how a society would function without language as the primary source of communication...he giggles! And I have two lectures with him three times a week. TRAUMA!
General English consists of about a hundred poems and two novels. YAYEEE! I so hope we don't get the Prize Idjit we had last year!

I detest learning the techniques of English, so my brain is already taxed, and tis only been two days. But great fun.

The writing workshop is being conducted by some people from Penn State University. Tis very enjoyable and open. We're currently writing on people and their spaces. Basically, what connects us to cerian places
Philosophy rocks this year. Two topics...Philosophy and Aesthetics and Philosophy in Religion. Sounds very very interesting.

I'm also studying Industrial Psychology this year. The course reads like an HR manual, frankly. I hate stuff that promises to mould you into a manager! All the books seem to say, is 'be positive'. Last time i checked, that was an Anil Kapoor dialogue in a movie where he was hanging off a cliff.

Loving college, looking forward to plenty of happy work! And Harry Potter approaches :) :) :) The Router and I will be at the entry-desk during the Event, so if either of us has a black eye or a bleeding nose...(just kidding Boss!) We are planning a day out of Pune for M's birthday next month, and our Pondicherry trip will be finalised soon. Very excited!

Listening to Neil Young, Marvin and Tammy and some lovely monsoon raagas by Kishori Amonkar.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Old love

Do nainaa aaur ek kahaanee
thoda saa baadal
thoda saa paanee
aaur... ek kahaanee

chhotee see do zeelon mein
wo bahatee rahatee hai
koyee sune yaa naa sune
kahatee rahatee hai
kuchh likh ke aaur kuchh jubaanee

thode sai hain jaanee huyee
thodee see nayee
jahaa ruke aansoo
wahee pooree ho gayee
hai to nayee fir bhee hain puraane...

ek khatm ho to
doosaree yaad aa jaatee hai
hothhon pe fir bhoolee huyee
baat aa jaatee hai

Masoom

Tis an old favourite. Sometimes a lover, sometimes a child.

Come one, come all



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