Monday, December 17

Smiley Romeo

He fell in love with my girlfriend, like i fell in love with her.

Ofcourse he only had her smile and that had him besotted all the way from Marine Drive to Dadar till we got off. And me, she gives me a million reasons to fall in love and i'm still counting. You know it's the most wonderful feeling to walk around with your girl, and she's glowing in her candescence like she always does. You think your eyes are lovelit in the soft glow of yellow that makes her shine. Then you see people look at her.
When i'm in the mood for fun, i look back at them. Each one. I bear them no grudge, it's just fun to make it known to them- they are also being looked at. Stared red-handed. They look at you and then quickly look elsewhere. Most as a rule, stealthily look back to see if you're still looking at them. I suitably oblige with a smile. Some return an embarassed one. Some consciously try to unlook. The leches get a hard stare back, the innocuous ones get a smile.

Our boy was simply besotted. He'd try to hide his gaze and i wouldn't let him. I think he hoped i left him alone, just let him be. Must have been eighteen or nineteen i guess, could've been older. And he was falling in love with her beautiful smile, like everyone who has ever seen it. Sitting right across our seats in a fairly empty Sunday night local, i think he got too conscious of his melting heart and our gaze. He was blushing. Poor little chap, what did you do to him Sangy? I think his name would have been Shahnawaz or Anwar. Could have been. We'll simply call him Romeo. He left when he realised he was getting too obvious. Left to stand by the door, looking outside the train is a chance distraction compared to what distracted him inside. I think he missed looking at our lady so he went quietly walked across to the other door. He'd look outside and then try to steal a glance. Everytime i got him, he'd return a smile.
Embarassed, helpless, charmed.

The slow train lazily creeped past each platform on it's idyllic Sunday night ride. A few would get into our compartment, very few would get off. And Romeo would heave a sigh of content relief for every station that left us without us leaving the train. A few more glances it meant for him. A few more for me. Then came Dadar. And disappointment. Perhaps. Because we did go and stand right next to him albeit for a few dying seconds before the train would suspend it's motion. And he couldn't help his eyes.

We got off and walked towards the exit. And then i just thought i'd look back at Romeo once. He was yearning for one last glance. I looked at him and couldn't help being amused. And he realised that i was having fun. Actually, i just felt for him. But Romeo, it's not wise to lose your heart over twenty minutes to someone else's girlfriend. Yeah she's charming but what did you get in return? Us fading into the crowd while you looked on with ardent hope? Actually a bit more. I told her about Romeo and she looked back while we were walking away. She broke into her usual giggle and Romeo grinned ear to ear. The train gave him time for just that. Then it left. We left. But i was walking back with you.

That evening there were actually two people falling in love with you Sangs. One for the first time and one, all over again. Like he always does. You'll forgive the habitual offender won't you for empathising with the first timer?

This is your post. The cornflakes are mine but you have a sweet tooth. Forgive me for the diabetic content because i know Romeo never will.

Tuesday, December 11

Like two plus two

Havent rhymed in a while
just held on to a smile
these days it isn't always mine
that's how i want to end this line.

Friday, December 7

Postman diaries

Not being on the blog enough. It's not your complaint any more, it's mine too.

Can't make the excuse of being busy, the whole world is. Can't make the excuse of being lazy, it doesn't count as an excuse. Shouldn't be making excuses in the first place.. but if truth be told, i hope i find a broker for time. Could really do with a few more holy hours each day. Infact, everytime i sit to write here, i realise there's a connect that's missing all the time i'm not writing. Excuse this for being another long one, but let's look back, or rather look into life over the fortnight. Two weeks have zipped past so soon that i almost need to write this one to ease the cramps in my head. Have been running too much and resting too little, having no clue where i'm getting.

Sunday IIFT.
It wasn't an exam i was too gung-ho about. Okay, it passes off as a B-school in the higher rungs of listings so i got myself a prospectus. Didn't really like the prospectus too much, except the placement details. Specifically starting offers. Ideally, the worst approach for an applicant. I don't disclaim it. Spending a grand on the form, steaming off from a strictly okay CAT and with nothing better to do on a Sunday morning, i thought i'd waste some more money by going and writing the paper. How i ended up writing it after leaving home is a different post altogether, but it just flagged off a couple of weeks of shit load of work that i couldn't really bunk. Unlike the exam i wanted to.

Two Weeks of Timelessness.
What followed the academic Sunday excursion is something that's lingering on. Now personal revelations suggest a more fruitful outcome to b-school entry routines if invested in with some more resolve, but work just explodes to a scale that consumes every bit of personal time and space. Even the time and space that ordains a rethink on the work scenario.

Last week.
A beautiful weekend spent in a beautiful city, in beautiful weather with beautiful people. And person. Two days don't get much better. Then, there's a hardhitting week, being tossed around in life's frying pan with all the wrong spices. Bheja Fry. But it's okay, it's life with all it's intrigues and it's wonderful.

You see, sometimes the only way to be in life is to be happy.. It's fluffy and easy to say so, but i think deep down i know, it's a choice we all get to make. Sometimes, it's a difficult choice to make. But it's a choice nevertheless. Whether it leads to an outcome different from the flow of time, i can't really say. Each figures out on their own. I did. I was smiling through the week. Only now, i do with more reason. Most issues have sorted themselves to gift me a pleasant weekend. No exams, no work. No pending mental cheques to be cleared. Just impending madness of the harmless kind.

Come to think of it, i'm glad i made that choice. Doesn't really change your quota of bad luck, but makes life simpler.

Awrite, i'm done being Dale Carnegie, now lets get plastered this weekend. Hope you have a good one too. Cheers all.

P.S : Computer undergoing bypass surgery, blogging from work.. so don't take the ranting too seriously.

Friday, November 23

Click

This post has come so late that I can’t help but resign to the feeling that it’s stale. Now, that’s not how you want to begin a post. Reading or writing it. But truth is, it’s difficult to capture the magic of first showers in the fourth week of monsoons. Time is suitably strange in it’s erosion of emotions but, what follows is the wonderful turn of events that led to love across the blog desert. A little hard to believe, so maybe, writing it in retrospect will help me align myself with the fact that yeah, I’m in love.

This blog has been a beautiful window into the lives of so many people. And they’re all like mirages. You know them, but you don’t quite know them. You relate to these people at times, at times their posts are right out of your mind and gradually, what happens is, somehow, in whatever miniscule way they become a part of your life. You begin seeing the broad spectrum of life through their eyes. Through their words. Their trials and tribulations, their ups and downs somehow transcend the barriers of semantics and you, unknowingly start feeling happy and sad for them. Rather, happy and sad with them. But it’s a window nonetheless, and these are real people in an unreal world.

She was one such mirage. And well, interesting one at that. I don’t quite know how I ended up meeting her. Okay, it had to do with comments that spilled over to mailboxes, smart retorts, wordplay, endless repartees and all of that. Basically intellectual warfare of the copywriter kind. She had just moved into Bombay a couple of months back and we were on each other’s blog for quite sometime before that. I wasn't exactly sure if it was prudent to extend this familiarity beyond blogs. I was in ways, seeing her new life unfold in this city through her blog. Gradually the familiarity grew on it's own to an extent that mutually demanded a reprieve from the virtual. And so for once, i thought it’s not such a bad idea to step out of the blog really. Also the twenty two year old adult male mind has it's own take that says, this chick is witty and interesting and well, also, insightful when she wants to be, so how bad could it possibly be. (i'll use the chick term sparingly hence) She incorrectly inferred likewise and one fine day, we decided to meet over some cheesecakes and cheap alcohol.

Firstly, I thought she was either a bit too brave or a bit too naïve to be meeting a complete stranger, in a city where she is a complete stranger herself. On my part when you meet strangers, you do your research, plan your back-ups and escape routes and if the whiff of adventure does the same things to you, that it does to me, you jump right in. Now you see, my social circles are blissfully oblivious to the location of this blog. A Saturday evening, meeting someone from the blog, forsaking regular weekending and not revealing the url were all active ingredients in a hot soup of curiosity. Responses ranged from
“What if she is a suicidal chick who is suffering from acute acne and depression?”
to the simple
“You have a blog? What’s the url? How come you never told us?”
to the basic
“What is a blog?”

Thankfully i had a hunch on this one, and that's all i needed to deviate from a regulation Saturday evening that wasn't to be consumed with consumption, soccer or socialising. It was an evening of C’s. Coincidence. Coffee. Conversation. Cheap alcohol (not really) and yes Cheesecakes. The last one left at half-shutter down Theobroma. She wasn’t suicidal. Nor thus far, acne ridden or awfully depressed. She was everything else. All that I could imagine. All that I couldn’t. It’s strange, you're not certain what you want from life, and then, suddenly you find yourself on the threshhold of all that you ever wanted, however subconsciously. It’s a bit overwhelming to the extent of disbelief at times. Life is so full and happy, and you wonder with a cup so full, what do you spill to fill some love? But Providence, sweet providence. It gives you another cup and two straws. Everyday since, i'm living bit a more. Breathing the same, but the lungs fill up with a bit more air.

There are wonderful stories about wonderful lives, but I had no clue that love would script mine It’s got everything that gets you incredibly high. There’s fun. Sometimes too much of it. There’s romance that can make you dizzy enough to see stars in daylight. There’s craziness and in no mean proportions. There's poetry, there's prose and there's humour in a heavy dose. There are words in as many languages. Who cares about perfecting linguistics when the grammar is purely cardiac? And then of course, there’s love. So much of it, so perfect and so beautiful. What else do you expect when a couple of wild and reckless romantics are hopelessly subservient to a celestial conspiracy that entwines their lines of fate? “Your face is your fortune” someone said the first time we met, waiting outside a popular Colaba eatery. Over a month since, I think Maybe.

Sometimes, a click is all it takes to change two lives forever.

Monday, November 12

First set, first game, Love all.

I'm in love and i'm tongue tied by time. I wish i could tell you how wonderful it is. And well, this blog has been instrumental. I love each one of you, each one i read. I haven't written here much, atleast not as much as this blog deserves to know. I haven't been reading a lot of you recently as well. All apologies, but in a week, once done with certain academic misadventures i'll let this blog in on the most wonderful and elevating feeling one can ever experience. It finally descends down to my heart after years of trials and tribulations in my head. And well, Diwali is over, but at four am that night, i lit myself the brightest lamp i ever had. Okay, i almost blew it, but then, i didn't for once. And i wish each one of you, the near perfect script of Providence that i'm playing out right now. Not an inch less, but miles more. That's all i have to say this Diwali. Give me a week, roughly, and i'll tell you about the most magical story that my romantic faculties could never foretell or foresee. But now it's mine.

When the music's over, she says she'll sing me a song. But the music has only begun, and it won't be over for long.

Thursday, November 1

I tell you that i'm in love looking right into your eyes
and you look right back at me saying "thank you"
and then, you smile.
unadulterated by age, barely three
you have the right response to a wrong plea.
maybe next time, i'll get you to fall in love with me.

Thursday, October 25

closure

when patience runs out on patience
pride descends into your heart
the end of lines you try to bend
brings closure to a start.

bungee

If dewdrops could kiss my ears
it'd feel like your voice
if there's a sound i could drown in
your laughter would be my choice
But i'm drowning in you,
you are the quicksand sea
and also the lifeguard
promising to rescue me.
You're gravity to my free fall
my reason to jump and see,
and the safest rope i ever had
my favourite bungee.
But i fear drowning
and i fear the snapping rope
the only friend i have betrayed,
is someone called Hope.

Wednesday, October 17

Frost and thaw

I was wondering in the blankness of the evening on what is a good time to write. Sometimes being busy lets you forget. About a lot of things. Everything. And then you when you slowly step outside the workplace, with every step taken towards home, you start draining away the busy-ness. And the other world, the one with your people starts trickling in, drop by drop into your head. Today you're going to be tossed around by providence, but you don't know it yet. You return to find an empty home, unwind with some good old Neil Young and just when you think you're sorted, sorted with the decisions you've taken for yourself, the choices you have made, just then, something that's hopelessly innocuous blows up into the space it finds. The space you give it. Solitude. You know you're indulging yourself, you can just walk out of the door and get back to the world. Make a call. Switch on the TV, or just step downstairs and meet up with people who're willing and waiting. But you being you, want to find out what is a good time to write an honest post. So, you let your heart feel the tickle of a pinch. It's some strange feeling of loss over something you never really had. Just thought you could, now you can't. Well, let's just say, you feel that God is playing wicked games with you. Just because you refuse his best laid plans, he refuses your's. Gives you the euphoria of something promising and then even without any conceit or sleight of hand, he whisks away the possibility. Sweeps it under the carpet. And so, you decide, it's okay. Promising things are different from promises. God doesn't really make any promises does he? He's legally well advised. You smile. You've found out what is a good time to write an honest post with abstract references.You are done wanting to feel disappointed any longer, so you change the music. Get some Motorhead on. Take a shower, and head out for the world that's waiting. You've been a good man. You've given you're blues their due.

And then next morning when you're wondering what all of this was, but about to post it anyway, the poker player lays out another set of promising cards. Cards with possibilites. But everytime you buy his promise of possibilities, it's a gamble isn't it? Hoping that the dealer hasn't dealt a hard deal again.

Wednesday, October 10

to do.

sit back and sip
old monk and coke.
light up another smoke.
blow rings in thin air.
write with long lost flair.
stop measuring the fall.
play flowing football.
swim into the night tide
deep into the sea
or run till i break free.
make some money
buy some time
add more rhythm
reduce the rhyme
wake up to dawn
before you do,
and see day
break into you.
relive the mush
hear songs of thrush
when it's over,
remember to flush.

Tuesday, October 9

If i had some clue about what i've lost,
perhaps it'd be a lot easier to find it.

Sunday, October 7

.

why post a bad one, when you know it's bad when drafting it?
such a waste of time. writing it. reading it. deleting it.
like this one.

Saturday, September 29

DUI

The ethanol sets in. Beautifully.
The medulla isn't numbed, it's just high
thro wet streets that shimmer and shine.
The city curves under my feet
As i fly through the velvet drizzle,
like a temptress teasing to be caressed
slithering; slowly, softly, smoothly:
Dark between the neon-lit drops of rain
and the windshielded droplets of streetlight
tossed between wipers
to the white noise of rain on road.
Every drop of blood diluted liquor
is an effervescence the head can't hold,
but i can't hold my head, i'm flying
on a sky, up high seven fold.
Then the car spins, tumbles and turns,
and the orgasmic peak of screeching brakes
climaxes with a metallic bang.
Horns yell out, the rubber burns,
the indicator blinks at "No right turns".
Hands on head, i wake up in bed,
Thankfully i'm not drinking, driving
Or dead.

Wednesday, September 26

A moment, a lifetime.

The sum total of every choice we make in every moment we live. We call it Life sometimes.

These moments, they let us be. Even the ones we leave blank. They never give up on us. Like soft bubbles that are yearning for a touch; waiting to be frozen into memories, afraid that they might burst before you touch them. Untouched, they'll disappear into the vast unknown of unrecoverable time. Like moist flowers at the wake of dawn, they dress up in dew and wait. To transcend time. To be plucked before they wither into dusk. Before they dry and fall into the meaningless abyss of 'what could have been'. Before they're lost forever, they wait for you, but what do you do?

You are the express train to an unknown destination, and these are mere nondescript platforms unlit by lanterns. You will get there someday. There. Where you think you are going. The promised land. What if it's untrue? The untouched bubbles have already burst into teardrops, the flowers have withered, dry and too dead to be woken up by any subsequent dawn. And those stations, those platforms unlit by lanterns, they have resigned to hierarchies of dust by now. The lantern's dying flame, in it's dying breath was still hoping you'd look back in the rear view sometime, redeem it from the immortal certainty of death. But you let it slide into darkness didn't you. A moment lost forever. And the passengers with colourful bags you so conveniently called luggage.. They wondered why you never stopped but they too have all left. Except the rare some who might still be waiting on those unlit platforms, lit by hope. But you can't go back to see if they're still there. Even if you want to. You run on the single gauge track of time. So does everybody else. In parallel lines to unparallel destinations. Backtracking isn't prohibited. It's merely impossible.

But we know it already, why waste words on conversations that don't need any? Maybe to freeze a bad post and later remember why. And end it with the best word of the lot. The one of endless possibilities. Even when the moment has passed you by.
Maybe.

Tuesday, September 25

Cricket brewed.

I like to play cricket when i am not fielding. That has been most of my deal with cricket. Inspite of spending a lifetime playing rubber on concrete or leather on clay, I can't imagine watching an entire match without a few yawns. I know it's art. I know the art. It still is boring. Football has always been the thing and I seriously wish we had a Liverpool joint (non herbal) in Bombay. Unfortunately, most matches in Europe are late night telecasts and the electric atmosphere of match-viewing outside stadiums had long remained an elusive charm. The first dose came from cricket over the weekend. Twenty20, yeah baby!
The semi and the final.
It was brilliant. I must have hugged everybody at an arm's length and everybody beyond. I've lost my voice to some reckless yelling. The crowd was good on Saturday, so was the chanting. It feels bludy good to have your chants echoed at far corners of a pub. Stupid stuff that people take a liking to, stupid but clean. Monday was a different story. There was no place to sit and chivalry claimed the hard fought chairs i'd managed to sneak from other tables. The crowd wasn't too bad, just too many of those happy-hours kind. So predictably, the chanting was profane and Bombay blah ( utter slang in it's Bombay glory). But the atmosphere was electric. Can't really claim that I had the best view of either screens, barely a fair idea of proceedings. As the pitchers tumbled, the screen just got bigger. Yeah, I like happy hours too. Just not the dodo teenagers. I mean, who uses 'Chak de' as a war cry among the other shit. Seriously what?

However, I lost my vocal chords even the last few that survived the Saturday strumming. But I'll remember the circus act and looking at 100 people following every gesture. Yes, I was the madcap doing shamanic things on top of a chair, while confused waiters and managers were rendered innocuous by the frenzied pub support. But next time, for all purposes of self preservation (read larynx) I must carry drums and trumpets. I mean, i feel like Dylan but i'm beginning to miss my voice now. And i have drafted this one for way too long without posting it. Let's push this through.
Cheers Boys! for being young enough to be called that!

Friday, September 21

Fade into you

I want to hold the hand inside you
I want to take a breath thats true
I look to you and I see nothing
I look to you to see the truth
You live your life, you go in shadows
You'll come apart and you'll go black.
Some kind of night into your darkness
colors your eyes with whats not there.
A strangers light comes on slowly
A strangers heart without a home
You put your hands into your head
And then smiles cover your heart.
Fade into you, i think it's strange
you never knew.

Indulgence on a rain-soaked Friday morning :)

Friday, September 14

Dual

Life has it's own fascination for duality. On the one hand it gives you an endless reserve of unexplored potential, at same time it tricks you with the greatest void in inspiration.

The world is unequally divided in it's opinion of the greatest tennis player of our time. It's a division that tilts heavily in favour of the obvious. If success is a measure of his greatness, he'll retire to be the greatest there ever was. Yet there is another great. Unsung but for the legend of his decadence. Gifted beyond measure, he is the epitome of unrealised potential. Each is what the other could have become. One for his own good, one for his worse. Roger Federer and Marat Safin. Equals both, in being gifted, yet separated by that strange constant of inequality among equals: Inspiration. This isn't what the post is about. It's on the crux of this metaphor. We are all in ways a Federer, or a Safin who isn't a Federer yet. Or somewhere in between, battling our own genius, battling ourselves.

But inspiration is strangely like Love. Infact love is a form of inspiration without the romance. But that's besides the point. The point is, it's either there or it isn't. You cannot time it, predict it and definitely not cause it to happen. It's a cause in itself. You only bear the effect. Like love, it's a season. This one's for the head. An unpredictable season. Sometimes, time can erode your patience and make you think otherwise. But just like you cannot trick yourself into believing that you love someone (inspite of those lovestruck phases of certainty), you just can't bang your pea head to get inspired. It'll when it will. You can blow your nose for all you are worth, but there ain't no phlegm till you catch a cold.

Life will always split you in it's love for duality. Giving you everything that is useless without something else. And then it sits back and watches you juggle in between the two contrasts. As you walk from one end to the other on the tight rope of possibilities.

I want him to win one last slam before he gives up on himself. The world in enamoured by Roger's poetry. I'm waiting for the climax of Marat's plot. His duel with his dual.

Wednesday, September 12

a different kind of change.

He was normal. Inconspicuous. Nothing out of the ordinary. You could easily miss him in a crowd of three. Abnormally normal. And he never made an effort to change it. Unaware, like most of his immediate environment, of his very own existence amidst it. No one ever saw him smile. They say he had given it up a long time back. But he didn't frown either. Unburdened by the tribulations of a smile or a frown, and situations or emotions that came along, he almost always had the pre-glow of an imminent smile. The kind that people have when fast asleep in the snug blanket of happy dreams. Almost a smile of the lowest vibration. But not quite. For the few who managed to stumble upon him in a fleeting glance, he was a trip in himself. He could easily make you oblivious to all his surroundings. Including yourself. Sometimes, somehow, if he ever looked you in the eye, there was a certainty in his gaze that even the greatest familiarity can't claim. He is certain about you. Even when you are uncertain about yourself. He just had that air. What is the bling term for it? Oh, Aura. Yes, he had that. I had neither. The aura, nor the change. Just a piece of myself that i dropped at the signal. And piece of his preglow that i carried back. He wasn't begging, nor was I. But i got some change.
From that sunkissed urchin on the street.
...............................

Now that we've talked of football and loose change. This one's a lighter bit that funnily links the two. The kicking boots needed a desperate visit to the surgeon of shoes. Ashok Shoe Mart. Thats what our cobblerman calls his 3 feet by 6 feet patchwork of corrugated tin sheets. Neat as his work is, his "mart" is clearly unlike. Three rupees to thirty is most of what his work is worth per customer. And he doesn't like to be hassled for the loose change. To that purpose he has a very clear cut message in bold red. English written in a font that can't get any closer to the Devnagari script. The communication was certain. Just a little letter that added a little confusion.

"Please give me a change"

Eggjactly!
Maybe the message was clear. I was confused.

Monday, September 10

Addictions, soccer, nicotine, blah

Most of the time in the last couple of weeks, i have been with the keyboard during my routine uninspired hours. Clearly, night is the master dope that i have been missing to find a way with words. But things have changed a fair bit in two weeks. Not that it'd interest you in particular, but that won't stop me from saying it. Not being much of an addict, the smoking has gone down a fair bit, almost a couple a day lately. I think that's ok. I only realise how bad it is when i get to the beach on Sundays for some football. Yeah, that's happening after almost a year since my knee ligaments broke up with me last July. Like all break ups, it's never the same when you get back together. It's an addiction really, weekend soccer at Juhu. Inspite of the horrible tan you end up with, the scratches, bruises and aches .. all of which are carried forward next week. Chocolate to dark chocolate. Monsoons are some respite from the tan. The rest remains. Mom as usual paranoid about all the sand and scars i carry back home, but i just carry the beach. The feel and the freshness. There's a strange charm to the place on weekend mornings without the usual fanfare and crowd. Most regulars are a bunch of 30 thereabout youngsters who have been weekend soccering for almost 10 or 15 years. The waves, the breeze, the sand, the unpredictable tide, i have missed all this for a year now. But the sad part is, you realise how out of shape you can get if you are not in touch with the sport. You don't run as quick, don't play as well, mere shadowing of what once was a decent touch on the ball. And two minutes of running, you're done.Your lungs tell you exactly why you need to quit smoking. Although i forget it by the evening. There is some sinister charm to smoking. Try looking at the flame with every drag you take. It's sheer beauty. Fire, moving closer. Shimmering, rustling it's way through the sundried leaves of tobacco. Turning everything to ash and smoke. You know it's a breath closer to the pyre. But then, every breath is. If i have one thing against God, it's really this. Why of all things is a cigarette harmful? I mean i know, nicotine, tar, impact boosting with ammonia, dopamine hassles in the head, yeah ok, but why couldn't you make us humans more immune to it? Maybe it's a subtle way of teeling us to stop choking him with all the smoke. The incense burning under his nose everytime we feel pious. But mercy, damn, mercy! Make me immune to cigarettes! I have rarely troubled you with incense sticks anyway! And for all the times i mess with your head, you give it back to me don't you?
See there goes my definition of a mundane post. But the blog was indeed looking empty and needed some change from all the mush talk. This is a change alright, but it comes in an uninspired hour. Time for a smoke? what say? haven't had one in two days.

P.S 1: Smoking is injurious to health. If you think it's ok to quit before marriage or kids or 40, beware of it's grim perils that'll take your case in your sweetest hour.

P.S 2: Sorry for the lekchuring.

Tuesday, August 28

Candy for two, me and you

The soft riff of an acoustic rings in my head. In a moment of repreive from the urban hustle, i'm looking for my moment of peace. Some people who won't ever get to this blog, deny me of it. Today i think of you. Each one. Most. And how i wafted into the mellow sunset while you were waiting at the beach. I am sorry to have given expectations, to us both. I'm sorry for unmade promises. Unkept. Isn't it a bad bargain, if i expect nothing of you at all? So i do. Hope, you release me from myself. And from you. You know how sweet a candy is, as much as i do. But it melts in itself, melts in you. It isn't meant to melt you. It's worth a moment of sweetness. A sweet aftertaste. And then, it slowly disappears. First, the candy. Then the taste. Then, the aftertaste. Like me. Like you.
I have thought of you since, in case you ever wondered.
And now, when i want my peace, I wonder if you still do.

Friday, August 24

a small dose of change

Okay, i agree here again, the posts are trickling in slowly. Slower than usual. To my own self, half as good, twice as bad as they ever got. Hopefully, it will change beginning with the template. I have been looking for the ideal template for a long time now. It's in ways, the story of my life these days. Hunting for the ideal template. Sometimes age teaches you a lot of things, arguably, a lot more than you need to know. And you don't know if you are the child with dreams or the adult with responsibilities. You must know however that you don't need to know either. Simply chase your dreams. It's the only responsibility you have, towards the only one you owe something. Yourself.
I started bouncing with the usual madness again. Thats when i realised how many knots were left tied. Everyday over the last week, i untied every single one of them. So today calls for a special cheers. A new template. A new post. And perhaps, taking off the blue sunglasses for soaking up the weekend sunshine.
The Dashboard tells me that it's blogger's eigth anniversary.
Cheers, to a healthy piece of software.
The lads from Anfield are playing their hearts out. Makes me incredibly happy for the club I supported all my life. Liverpool. Even when we were losing everything inculding pride, players and points.Now these boys inspire the Kop that stood behind them in their darkest days, roaring always,
"You'll Never Walk Alone"
Hoping for a good game, G comes back from M'lore, so hopefully the pints are on him.
For all else, Cheers.
P.S Does the new layout work?

Monday, August 20

words for no words

madness, madness inside of me,
which side should i turn to see
rainbow prisms of eternal hope
a limitless horizon of endless scope
madness, madness don't stop short
a whiff of freshness i yearn to snort
when i rhyme more than i ought
i know my writing's outta sort.
madness, madness find me words
words my head hasn't long heard
words for you and me, you know,
read better, written best - these words
quench some unknown quest.

Friday, August 17

Graduation

I wonder if I have become dispassionate all of a sudden. It's almost more than two months since i wrote my final paper. I wasn't on top of the world then. For no reason. I wasn't waiting for the results all this while. They were inconsequential. Always were. It's not an alibi for not doing well. I did rather well lately. Today when the results were announced, i had landed myself a score i'd willingly accept with a smile a couple of months back. A score i'd have considered to be an indulgent dream in my first few years of engineering. A score that will be an ornate etching on a worthless degree. And today, i had surpassed my expectation and also my critical evaluation. But i was unmoved. I wasn't happy. But i wasn't sad either. I felt nothing. Not even relief. Just felt like i didn't care anymore. Or maybe, i couldn't care any less.
A few calls had to be made to a few people. People to whom this meant something. They were happy. Not for my degree, but for me. Congratulations, good words, all, everything. I wasn't happy. For them, myself or my degree. Just blank.
For four years this was a dream. For four years it faded. Today it meant nothing. A worthless degree that certifies my participation in the rat race. Nothing more than a cheap poster of erudition that generations of unresisting youth have used as passport to a world that recognises them by labels. Graduates.
I also wonder whether this whole management thing will prove to be any better. It'll be a slightly well heeled race. Running with cats instead of rats. Running nevertheless, with animals. Like animals. In the middle of chasing lucid capitalist dreams, i wonder if i'll still be that somebody who's happy lying on the terrace gazing at the stars.
Wondering which ones are his.

Friday, August 10

Between the cup and the lip

I am here after so long, that i almost feel like an alien in my own blog. I guess i have never not written myself out for over 10 days since i've begun blogging. Ofcourse i was here, but i just couldn't get myself to write the way I would love to.
Writer's block? Maybe.
What started as a set of questions on a weekend a couple of weeks back, snowballed into a set questions that i hadn't asked myself in a long time. Maybe i could shrug them off easily if i had the answers. But the truth is, i had no answers.
Sometimes, we ask ourselves the wrong set of questions at the wrong time. Wrong set of questions because they have no right answers. Wrong time because you there's so much going on in life which promises to be perfect, that you could really do without the personal interrogation.
Damn the conscience. But such is life and such are it's questions. You can't really do much unless you have the answers.
Bloody bubbles in your favourite cocktail that refuse to burst before you shake it or after you sip it. Life in all its shades is that cocktail right now and I don't want to shake it. Nor burp.

...................................................................

Fun things. In a bi-monthly chronicle for a stupid club in the western suburbs, i had to put in some quotes. This time around, i put in Jim Morrison and Che Guevera in the first copy instead of their routine Bapu, Tagore and Woodrow Wilson. I thought they would send it back asking for the usual. They didn't. So now their white collared middle age patrons will have the Lizard king beaming at them on the first page saying;

"Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power. You are free"

Yeah Baby! Even if one of them raises an eyebrow wondering how Morrison and Ernesto got to page one, i'd say.. job well done!!

.................................................................................

I'm quitting work completely. Till i'm broke again. Split in unequal halves, unpreparing for CAT and Copywriting, i realised i was doing neither too well. The ideas were running dry, the money stopped appealing, cracking campaigns was not a high anymore; mere riddance. I was in the middle. For people who have been in the middle, they'd know that it's a nowhere really. Neither motivating myself enough after work to get cracking on those sums, nor being able to think freely during work. Knowing i should rather be at home preparing for my dive into capitalism. As i sip my steaming cup of coffee, i think i know where i am.
Between the cup and the lip

.................................................................................

Hope. What is life without hope? That spark in your eyes before you go to sleep, promising a better tomorrow. The velvet canvas for all your dreams. The ray of light in your worst nightmare. The string that holds your soggy laundry, hung out to dry. You hope that things change, for the better. You hope you find answers before questions and questions with answers.
Sometimes though, when you are between the cup and the lip, you simply hope to make it to the other side. Always hoping you do enough, to justify that Hope.

Saturday, July 28

Moth to a flame

I’m not flirting with danger
I’m the danger you are flirting with.
I’m not pulling you down
you are chasing my sinking ship
I’m not the light,
I’m the burning pyre
I’m not burning,
I’m the fire
And you are drawn to me
Like a moth to a flame,
But i’m love, forbidden.
The fire with no name.

Wednesday, July 18

eight

I've been tagged by deepika. The rules are simple,
1. open a can of beer, take a sip and write eight random things each after a sip.
2. if you finish your beer before you finish writing #4, you should get one more and proceed..
3. if not, you should take larger sips to finish before you proceed.
4. if you don't drink, don't worry and don't start. These are not the rules.


Random revelations

1. I am a fussy sleeper. More often than not i'm the last one to sleep, but i can't ever sleep after sunrise. I can't sleep without covering my eyes, and i can't sleep even if there's half a noise somewhere. And I hate lying in bed, with no sleep and millions of useless ideas running through my head. Sometimes i wish we had a shut-down command for the head. Switch off till needed next.

2. Given the choice between a goodlooking woman and one who can play chess really well, i'd be confused. But who gives me that choice anyways?

3. I love the smell of coffee and i love my coffee with lots of milk.

4. I hate lizards, but i feel for them. I think animal right activists have given them a raw deal. I wonder how they feel or how i'd feel if i were them and hated by someone like me, for no reason, just for the way they are.

5. I think everyone should fall in love once. It's a beautiful magnifying glass. The more you look at yourself through it, the more you discover yourself. But we're too busy being happy when we are in love to care about it, and too lost when it's over.

6. I hate people who love to debate. I think it takes two fools to start one.

7.Movies, the other way. If you have ever sneaked vodka into a multiplex, you'll know exactly what I mean here. Movies are never the same. The worse are not as bad, the good ones get better. If you buy me vodka and movie tickets, i'll teach you how.

8. When i was 15, i had been to a neurlogist.(i want this information on my godsmacked resume!!) I hated the neuro for calling me normal, but the other patients i saw, made me realise how priviliged we, me and you, are. We have the gift to choose our degree of madness and enjoy it. Not all people do, for a fault not entirely their own. Feel fortunate.

return to madness,
cheers.

Sunday, July 15

The umbrella apologies.

are we the same people with different words
or different people with the same words.
neither or none.
just there for each other,
like monsoon clouds that drip as they run.
i wish my umbrella could thank you,
for some shelter from the sun.

Wednesday, July 11

the point is

These are some strange days. Almost bizarre. The first three days of the week have sped past without a trace. Too many things happening, all too distinct, all too consuming, all left undone. I wonder if there will be a more apt time to put in words, the myriad experiences in life. This week has pretty much covered the middle spectrum.
It's strange, how all of a sudden life swings you around and brings you back at the same place, only with a larger kitty of self discovery. As far as swings go, this one has been wild.
A month into a so-called vacation, i have gone from discovering newer dimensions of ennui, to, in a matter of three days, discovering that my tank is running out of gas to fund my ride. This week sets the tone for the coming four months, when i take the plunge into mainstream with an exam that strangely puns with cat. Another, lost to the management drain. Life has certainly never been fuller. Like a pregnant mother, glowing. Except, i have no clue what it's going to deliver. And i don't even have nine months. Copywriting is turning out to be very handy money, except, the agency is sinking and i am one of the plugs. Freelancing is a funny way of life. If it meant more money, i'd do it forever. Theatre. Yes. I've always wondered who these set of people were that you bump into at Prithvi or NCPA experimental at every show.The same set, at most plays. Theatre people, playing and paying to watch each other, divided by the stage. I'll do a post on this species soon, but come Sunday i'll be on the other side. Just to check in. Or perhaps check out. So thats two 'growing up phase' passions tasted and tested. Copywriting and theatre. None of which are remarkably well paying. My parents would pin it down as the indulgence of the wealthy or the wierd. The former doesn't hold true for me, the latter, they refuse to acknowledge. Oh, and they seldom lose a chance to remind me that i'm also supposed to be a computer engineer, and normal people my age with my degree actually have a real job with software giants. How abysmally normal are these people anyways.
But thankfully life is more colourful than my critique on the mainstream. And i shouldn't even be doing it, if i am headed down that road in four months.
Stranger things are occuring in stranger ways. I am doing things i've never done before. Not since inception of intelligence. The thing about the human heart is that it's forever in conflict with our head. Forever. I think it just pumps the wrong blood with the wrong chemicals into the brain, everytime the two disagree. So your head is buzzing, and your blood is rushing, but the heart wont relent until it has its way. Only, you can never be sure if it's right or wrong. If it's a good thing or a bad thing. If you are your heart or your head. Or somewhere in between.
This post isn't meant to have a bottomline. It's a locus that touches many points, but is largely pointless.
But these are days i need to wrap in words and trap in posts. So be it.

Monday, July 2

Afterlove burps.

yes i love you
i think you always knew.
by the time we both grew
our worlds were too different
and our words too few.

But love steps up an intellectual gear
as my heart recovers from your sweet sear
and the only women i now want near
are the ones willing to buy me some beer.

Thursday, June 28

The Prodigal Son

Maa, i have your feathers
but i have different wings
You have given me my voice
but i have a different song to sing.
For the ones who know your eyes,
they say my eyes are yours ,
you have shown the world to me
now i want to see beyond.
I have a different vision, Maa
i hope you could see,
my point of being alive
is being limitless and free.
You have given me your life,
in ways i cannot give you mine
not because i love you less
because your love is more divine.
Let me go, to my mad world
for madness that helps me grow,
I'll bring you treasures of insanity
that a saner world can't show.
Wish me some wind, Maa,
dont wish my wings denied
who flies like a kite?
winded at one end, the other end tied.
I shall return, when i'm homesick
to rest in that familiar old lap
sing me a lullaby wont you?
it'll make a beautiful snap.
my roads dont take me anywhere,
there's nowhere i want to go
i just want to roam in ways
that i myself dont know.
Your child is still a child, Maa
even if he is unabashedly undear
when you hear his voice, you know
your loss is still his greatest fear.

10 feet

I think i have been earmarked for close shaves. Lightning doesnt strike twice, but it has given me two kalti's. Real close ones. Here's the freakin last one and closer of the two. Whadda f*ck!
Nice calm monsoons. Mild drizzles with milder raindrops and a beautiful romantic feel to the lazy afternoon. The kind of rains that feel like scotch in the evenings and coffee by day, or walks by the beach with your oxytocin fix. Better called love. I was having none, just having the weather by the window and there it came, as an inexplicable flash of white. A strange powerful strip of descending light.
Blink and its gone with a crisp and sharp crackling sound. It felt unreal. Before you realize whats going on you're hit by the mammoth waves of thunder that follow. The windows rattle, the knees tremble, the heart starts thumping at trance rates. Pure adrenalin flushing your body thro and thro.
I can still drop my eyelids and hear that sound, crystal clear crackling sound, like crackers in Diwali, Sodium on fire, wires shorted, crack snorted.. zkrrzkrzrzrkzrzrkzkrzrzkrkzrkrzrkzr
My hair is standing at its end. It's been over 30 minutes.
Technically, the difference between life and death. I'd probably have checked out if my hair was standing before the strike. It's probably standing now because i havent checked out. If you have ever felt so much adrenalin in your blood, you're kind of zonked out enough to be wanting it again. I wish you know one day. And live thereafter to realise what i say.
But settling down to lower levels of gushing blood and more sustainable heartbeats, one feels so vulnerable and insignificant to the brute force of nature. Like ants trampled by unaware footfalls, like the million ants we trample. Unaware, unconcerned.
To look at it again, without the testosterone or amines causing the wires in my head to trip, trying to be rational about it, i think, i was a mere 10 feet away from writing this post and never one again. For what its worth in the 10 milliseconds of pure rush, would i have it again?
Hell yeah, if it doesnt kill me!
Chances are it'll.
10 feet away from being wiped out by a wierd white flash of light.
Unbelievable, unnerving, humbling, euphoric, true, random, lucky.
Lucky, stating the obvious because its too good to feel lucky.
Luck and me are star crossed, thankfully not this once.

Friday, June 15

Unblue

For a man i love even though he snatches my blue sunglasses away, i have only this to say
'Old Monk, you are a good ol' monk'

I have to have the most stupid set of friends in the world. birds of a feather flock together. Who plays 'peep quizzing' at 3.30 am in a middle of nowhere road, while our missy friend proclaims her duress under nature's call? Her enthusiasm got progressive with every wrong answer she gave.Very many.
She didn't stand a chance. Was winning of any consequence to the fury of the witheld torrent?
I thought it was urgent, so did everybody else in intervals of five minutes.
Who plays 'peep quizzing' anyways???
we weren't even that drunk!
and two of the four weren't even drinking
( they must have been high on life! ahem..)
so alcohol does not explain the girl's behaviour.
in case you were planning to drag my Old Monk into this.

I have to be fuckin kidding myself. I havent played dumb charades since beginning of common sense. Yeah well, last night i just played dumb charades with a bunch of overgrown, underevolved 22 year olds after an enlightening session of 'peep quizzing' although under more domestic settings with private provisions for nature.
Nature's calls are tough on Eves. (chauvinism eh?)

Okay, lets now get to the part where i appear smarter than the rest.
hunger pangs post dawn. money left only for bhurji pav and cutting. find no place. IIT canteen might've just shut. wisecracks decide to drive to the airport. Now advice. I hate it. But I must.
Bhurji pav,60. Omlette pav, 50. Pav bhaaji, 65. Pav excluded.
who pays that for burji pav in a stupid airport canteen? thats 10 bucks short of 5 cans.
btw.. pretty airhostesses.... naah, only cargo loaders and freeboarders.
Now if you know your tricks in Bombay vada sambar is the safest, cheapest bet with any Shetty should your misfortune land you there.
20. not billed. i dont complain. i dont pay. my part only. (thats more smart than cheapo if you're broke again by the end of night)
the food doesnt stick in my throat.
others dont have the ideal beginning to their day.
wonder when we last did.
............................

After exorcism of the blues by the good Old Monk, i had fairly intelligent things to see and hear for the rest of the day.

1. a nondescript hut with two huge connected hoardings to define its purpose
"Ramkrupa Raaj Jyotish" "Ramkrupa Estate Agents"
.... eggjactly!

2. "GOVINDA HAIR CUTTING SALOON"
(FOR MEN'S ONLY)
.... eggjactly!

3."Aapka Suroor. The moviee- the real luv story"
whut? no really whut?
the problem isn't nasal, its purely cerebral.
the german police will soon find out.

4. CNN-IBN runs out of people very enthusiastic about our choice of the next President.
(my missy friend with her heightened awareness of social issues in India thinks its Sonia Gandhi,
which may not be entirely incorrect if you're an insider. She isn't.)
So IBN catches Mrs. Patil's daughter for a 'few' soundbytes on the country's first lady prez. She has this to say:
"yes she is a lady, that lady is my mother"
... really??

I am so glad my friends, the priest, the waitress and the hippie dont do blogs. nor do most people who know me and them. Except G. Better find peace in silence.

Wednesday, June 13

The Blue Sunglass


It steals the colour from your eyes
and you almost never realise
when all at once the only hues
you see are the different shades of blues

Sunday, June 10

Catch22

I've never waited for a day for so long, as this. I should've been fuckin insanely happy at the end of it. No more exams. A free man. For as long as i wish to be. But i was blank.

Even when loading my head with information during exams, a month before exams when i was happy i was writing my last semester, six months before exams when i was glad i was in my last semester, even back then, a small part of me always kept itself happy looking forward to this day. Another small part of me worked tirelessly devising a million ideas on what i was going to do today. And for days to come after this day.

And all i have since i tied my last supplement is a blank. A numbness in the head.

Its only a co-incidence that i came home to switch on my computer to the shrill beep of blown RAM chips. The RAM chips had blown. Uncanny given the lame analogy in my last post.

I think the numbness in my head could also be attributed to similiar reasons . blown random access memory.

I thought i'd have been drinking like crazy to celebrate the closure. I wasnt.

Underslept I wanted to i'd sleep for wee bit before heading out for the night. Ended up spending the sunset hours on the terrace to escape the sweaty woes of an unexpected , unwanted power cut. Realised i was too tired to party in the overcrowded weekend pubs i could afford, too broke to be going to a better place. So i chose to take off my blue sunglass with a couple of drinks at an old friends pad.


bereft of ideas and enthusiasm, i settled for vodka with my old friend with white hair. He has now started looking the way Santa would, if he shaved, cropped and drank every night since Christmas. His head is huge. His intellect, limitless. Under the shadow of a shining professional career, our old man is mostly a recluse these days trying to come to terms with the fact that success like all most things in life is transient. However he takes his holy hour seriously. Playing Patience with his favourite set of ragged old cards. Advice is his form of nostalgia too. Sometimes it makes some sense, at all times its yet another alternate perception.

It was my last exam. Over. End of academics if i chose it so.
And he quietly said in his loud voice, 'my friend, this is the last insignificant exam that you will write. Every day from now on will be an exam with no grades, only a smile to take to bed at the end of it, or none.'Hmmm..

I bounced on it much later in the night back home. Catch22. I was in the wrong age at the wrong time. I should have figured out what i wanted to do in life by now. It was a wrong thought to have at 2 in the night with vodka in my head. Should i have been rather downing pints in a pub with skimpy teenagers, spiked hair northies and wierd middle aged men with hot wives? Cant tell, but i couldnt even sleep. Dont know why. My RAM chips had blown. And the one thought was seriously threatening my impending vacation.
What is the one thing i can bet my life on. It's something i need to think over everyday when i'm in my holy hour. Its not necessary that i find it in a week, a month or a year. Or ever. But its essential that i find it for myself and while in the process, its important to remain insulated from the vulnerabilities of confusion and indecision.
But then again, i'm in the wrong age at the wrong time, lets get the thinking sunglasses on.
Maybe.
It's Catch22.

Tuesday, June 5

Scrambled eggs

Always probing. Always disrobing.
Himself unto himself.

Yes, deleted the rest of it again, only retained the two lines that made sense.
The impulsive bit of writing is taking its toll. It wasn't meant to be.
Writing posts and deleting them at every subsequent read. Anyways, i shouldn't really take snapshots of my mindscape during exams. There's an information overload. A case in point is the analogy i'll make to RAMs. Yes, its an extended romance with chips and code. You know, its kind of strange how our minds are so similiar to random access memory chips. Load them with too much information and most certainly they leave you with no space for lateral thinking. No space to run free algorithms. Free some space and it starts holding garbage value. Random. Obscure. Garbage.

Anyways, i think i haven't written with much insight or personal touch in a long time. Should probably refrain from such futile attempts till the weekend. Maybe it will bring the change that will stop me from getting stale. Yes, finally engineering exams end for the last time.
It will be a big change. Long overdue.

I am placing my bets on the 'real' monsoons to hit Mumbai on Saturday. A perfect way to wash away the thick coat of dust that has gathered for four years. I can almost smell the freshness.
It's beautiful.

Come the rains,
The blues will fade into the grey.
a brighter shade of green will be,
what once was turning hay.

Friday, June 1

Writing blanks

Writing is getting bound to the grammar of thoughts.
Thoughts are getting bound by their own grammar.

Tuesday, May 29

Incoherent

We constantly look to live a life that has meaning. We live life looking for that meaning. And when we get our meaning, we realise it's not what we wanted. Our meaning has changed. It's never the same. It changes with time, and we are always left looking for the elusive meaning to our lives. It' also the beauty of life. It's the change that stops us from getting stale.

...................................................

Love. Strange how we never give up on it. Even if we do.
Strange, how it always remains the subtext in every context of our lives.
Strange, how every context is so incomplete without it.

..................................................

The principle of vulnerability : A system is only as strong as it's weakest point.

We only let certain people inside, people with passwords. Yet, there are some that hack us. Get deep inside. See right through us.
Love is a master virus. It has been our weakest point. The point of our greatest vulnerability.
The perfect hack.

.................................................

Such are these days of my technical odyssey. Finding subtext in the context of technology.
Finding life in machines. Finding machines in life.
Finding love for computers four years after i should have.
Hope it isnt another 1 - exam stand.

Saturday, May 19

Maybe not

ICSE results were announced today and I just got off the phone from my cousin bubbling with enthusiasm at the opposite end. Needless to add, she fared very well. In an instant, I was taken back by six years, to a midsummer night’s nightmare in Calcutta. I was there on a vacation, having just finished my board exams in very favourable fashion. After having completed most of my schooling in the warm embrace of academic excellence, as in all Bengali families, I was the blue-eyed boy who was to be their next doctor or engineer. Sixteen. I remember that age, all over again. Brimming with hope, enthusiasm and a composed confidence about my abilities. I wanted to be an engineer, a doctor, a musician, a painter, an artist, a film-maker, a copywriter, a footballer, a wildlife photographer, a monk in Ladakh, an IIM graduate and everythin that i could ever be (certainly, this was before the invasion of nicotine, alcohol, spirituality and common sense!) I not only wanted, but believed I could be these things. In my head, i already was on the threshhold. It’s the beauty of being sixteen. An inherent fearlessness about everything.

A belief that this world is for the taking, and a belief that you can grab it with both hands. Sixteen. I also remember the days of being a lovelorn teenager. Hah! Thankfully I wrote a diary those days that has a string of entries dating to the present. Sometimes I re-read those pages and re-live the innocent years of being so madly in love. How priorities change over time, and how falling in love becomes a matter of judgement and choice as we age, is a probe i need to make into myself. Now when I flip pages of those teenage archives, I really wonder if those days will ever return. Atleast in spirit ( pun heavily unintended!). Such is age, such is ageing. The funny part is, my brother is exactly the same age as I was when I took to penning my thoughts. It’s really strange to see the rise of a generation right in front of your eyes. So different, yet so much the same. The difference is only superficial. Deep down its just the same. In hindsight, the wisest thing I must have done when sixteen, was maintaining a diary.It marks my growing phase so lucidly, that I can almost re construct the fag end of my adolescence- How reckless I found myself in love, how brilliantly I handled myself during family crisis and how effortlessly I found myself in multiple moments of clarity having simple conversations with the passive diary. (I actually mis-spelt it as ‘dairy’ on more than one occasion!)

There have been some moments of stupidity, innocence that continue to embarass me before i burst out in laughter, yet, there have been moments of profound insights with a frequency, that eludes me even now. And yet, like when I was sixteen, I still can’t chain my thoughts. A case in point, is this interjection. This was so meant to be about the summer’s night, the day my ICSE results were declared.

And now, i don't even feel like getting it back into my mindspace. The train of thoughts is headed elsewhere. Yet, it should suffice to say, in more than one uncanny way, that night was the first chip to bring about a cascade of dominoes, in what proved to be in later years, God’s strangest roll of dice.

Would i have it any other way?
Maybe. Maybe not.

Friday, May 11

Night

Once again when the whole world sleeps..
in deserted solitude, the cold night weeps.

For most of my years so far,
i've kept time for the night and its stars
post drudgery when these shoulders drop
soothed by night, my imagination crops
and as deep into its darkness i gaze
somehow i find my lost ways..
Almost, always.

Thursday, May 3

Good News, please.

Can't read the newspapers anymore, can't watch the news channels. Sometimes i really wonder if it's all true, if these sordid events actually occur day in day out. Thefts, robberies, rapes, murders, scams, conspiracies, deserted newborns, discarded foetuses, organ trade, dowry fuckups, fake encounters, land acquisitions of the bloody kind, accidents, accidental accidents, bride elopes, groom doesnt turn up, damn damn damn... and if not this, then some crappy PR exercise in a manner that is all but subtle, some really 'unwanted but in your face' gossip, even in the main papers these days, and cheap media gimmicks that will make you flush the newspapers after your morning read, with you know what!
Bad way to begin the morning.
Reading newspapers early morning is now a habit i want to kick more than anything else. More than nicotine, more than the customary pint, more than 20 cups of tea, more than ennui. . more wedding stories, so what if its irrelevant, more of them.. its candy floss, that sugarcoats and scantily hides the relevant. The relevant is too nightmarish anyways.
A perfect downer after you wake up, sipping the strong coffee. Only far stronger, bitter and inordinately longer than the caffeinated aftertaste.
...............................................

A rare moment of solitude at home, and i'm thankfully not introspecting on anything. Make myself a cup of frothy coffee. Shamelessly flick cigarettes from dad's sealed packet. I'm sure he would have found out by now. And i dont know why i did it. I mean, the whole purpose of not stocking smokes with the intention of cutting down, well that certainly doesnt help. So, here i am, in my loo, sitting on the pot sipping coffee, inhaling, exhaling, carefully out of the window.
Even at 22, this is a rare thrill. Hiding and smoking.
Without a contingency plan for a sudden doorbell. But there's a thrill
There will probably be a time when i wont have this trivial fun anymore.
Wonder what i will miss more..
My thrill or my lungs.

Sunday, April 29

Endgame

Yesterday, i wrapped up all college obligations pertaining to engineering.
All done. Ask an engineering undergrad, and you will know its significance. The word "Term End" has a certain parole type feeling to it. Especially in the final year. It signifies a closure. An end to mundane clerical exercises of writing journals, assignments, term tests, oral examinations, vivas and projects. End of the great 'tamasha' that you silently witness, detest and contribute to, in four supposedly fruitful years of your life. Except, that in most cases, these years aren't too fruitful. For me personally, it has been a drag. A loss of personal estimate. I have lost myself in these four years. I have found new things, but lost myself doing strange things in the 'system'.

So, i walked out of college, inhaling fire under the hot sun at the sector 5 bus-stop. Living out my fifteen minutes of nostalgia. Looking straight ahead, slightly above the mirage , i could see the 2.05 pm local sprinting ,to make it to the station at sector3 on time. There would have been people from my college, sprinting towards the station themselves. They couldnt afford to miss the local. It was the vital link that would help them on their way to the far flung northern suburbs, outside of Bombay. I could barely relate to these people in four years of college, we were more or less on the same path for four years, but we came from paths that were way too different, and would probably head out on paths that wont be the same. Yet we shared a cultivated familiarity and a relation that could best be crystallised as 'symbiotic'. Symbiosis is productive basis for relationships, but for four years, and for the better or worse, it was the only thing we could touch base on.
And here i was.
Confused between nostalgia and relief.
Returning to the comfortable and familiar environs of the western suburbs, while they would head for their further flunged homes that were possibly at that hot hour, and probably a few more.. sweating it out in 8 hours of regulation power cuts.
While my way back home would have me cross a bridge, they would always be to me, on the other side of the bridge. Literally and metaphorically.

I could have taken a lift back home. I chose to catch a bus instead. I'd miss this transit. I'd miss my solitude and anonymity on my way back home in the bus. I'd miss my 'thinktime'. By the time i was crossing the beautiful Powai lake and inching closer home, i was trying to sum up this whole engineering expedition.

Fifteen minutes of nostalgia, after four years of engg.. well, its more than i had bargained for.
Back home, slowly cooling off with a litre of lemonade, having the privilege of electricity and airconditioning at this hour, i gathered my take on these four years.

While still unsure, from a shop of shoes, i chose one. This shoe wasn't for me. But i could only tell once i wore it. I wish i could before. I squeezed, twisted and tried hard, just to fit in.
The shoe was tight, and not quite right. My feet turned sore, and bruised by the shoebites.
I kept walking. I had no other shoe. This shoe had its path, i must have been lost walking it. For four years i walked to get to this day. The first two years the shoe was really harsh on the foot. The shoe slowly, loosened a bit in the later years, my feet stopped bruising, but they still hurt. I kept walking. My feet were sore but i walked alright, maybe a different path, but i walked well. My feet would have turned smelly inside them shoes for four years. But today, i have reached, almost where i had set out for. I have endured this choice of a shoe, and now i can take my shoe off. The path ends. My feet are free. They can go where they want to be.
Now i can discard this shoe and heal its bruises.
This shoe is engineering.

Tuesday, April 17

Jimbo

"I believe in a long prolonged derangement of the senses to attain the unknown... Although I live in the subconscious, our pale reason hides the infinite from us. "

- Jim Morrison


Wednesday, April 11

Quarter life crisis

The ideas are drying up, while the ones left are ragged repetitions that lack insight, relevance and freshness. While i reconcile with silence, lets archive this sweet mail i recd a few days back.

Being Twenty-Something
by Brenda Della Casa

They call it the "Quarter-life Crisis." It is when you stop going along with the crowd and start realizing that there are many things about yourself that you didn't know and may not like. You start feeling insecure and wonder where you will be in a year or two, but then get
scared because you barely know where you are now.

You start realizing that people are selfish and that, maybe, those friends that you thought you were so close to aren't exactly the greatest people you have ever met, and the people you have lost touch with are some of the most important ones.

What you don't recognize is that they are realizing that too, and aren't really cold, catty, mean or insincere, but that they are as confused as you.

You look at your job... and it is not even close to what you thought you would be doing, or maybe you are looking for a job and realizing that you are going to have to start at the bottom and that scares you.

Your opinions have gotten stronger. You see what others are doing and find yourself judging more than usual because suddenly you realize that you have certain boundaries in your life and are constantly adding things to your list of what is acceptable and what isn't.
One minute, you are insecure and then the next, secure.

You laugh and cry with the greatest force of your life. You feel alone and scared and confused. Suddenly, change is the enemy and you try and cling on to the past with dear life, but soon realize that the past is drifting further and further away, and there is nothing to do but stay where you are or move forward.


You get your heart broken and wonder how someone you loved could do such damage to you. Or you lie in bed and wonder why you can't meet anyone decent enough that you want to get to know better. Or maybe you love someone but love someone else too and cannot figure out why you are doing this because you know that you aren't a bad person.

Getting wasted and acting like an idiot don't seem as fun. You go through the same emotions and questions over and over, and talk with your friends about the same topics because you cannot seem to make a decision. You worry about loans, money, the future and making a life for yourself... and while winning the race would be great, right now you'd just like to be a contender!

What you may not realize is that everyone reading this relates to it. We are in our best of times and our worst of times, trying as hard as we can to figure this whole thing out.

For your twenty-something friends... maybe this will help someone feel like they aren't alone in their state of confusion...

"Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away."

It's really amazing when two strangers become the best of friends, but it is really sad when the best of friends become two strangers.

Sunday, April 1

blues they come and go..
the ones that remain turn indigo.

Sunday, March 25

Ennui

the word is beautiful and its called ennui.
you are drawing blanks looking at the sky.
or perhaps not, maybe looking nowhere.
the fear is not of the unknown,
its much rather of the known.
Knowing what you are capable of,
not knowing what to do with it.
but most of all knowing that..
you are still drawing blanks looking at the sky,
the word is beautiful and its called ennui.

Thursday, March 8

Maybe..

Maybe someday, i'll forget that i loved you. Maybe someday i wont.
Maybe our moment had its lifetime or maybe it was never meant to end.
Maybe the way you cloud my head will rob me of my share of sunshine,
Or maybe it'll be my shade.
Maybe our roads never really diverged, they just had different names.
And yet maybe we'll meet again.
Maybe you'll still find love in my eyes,
like you always did back then.
And yet everyday i'm lost in myself, or maybe i'm lost in you.
Maybe someday i'll gather myself in bits together,
because i still can't make out myself from you
Maybe solitude is mildly psychotropic
Or maybe its just you.

Tuesday, March 6

Holi

Holi. Such a beautiful word. Short, sharp and throbbing with such energy, vibrance and life.
In ways, its a metaphor for Life itself.
Our experiences are nothing but colours in the canvas of our life (cliche regretted!).

Distinct, each with a different effect, each for a different reason yet contributory to the picture of our life, only as a speck in the whole. Colours of a million shades.
Shades of brighter hues, mirth, joy, love, passion.
Shades of solitude, grey. Shades of blue, of sunshine yellow,
Shades of hope and dark despair.

And yet like all experiences of our life, the colours too fade after a phase of distinct blotting and like old memories that are no longer distinct, slowly the colours begin to merge.. until we cant make one from another.

And then we are ready, to leave all our colours behind.

Wash ourselves of all impressions, and purge ourselves of all tints. We start another year, with a clean canvas, ready to soak in the shades of life, till the next Holi.


Maybe our truest test of all does not lie in the colours we acquire, its fiercely external to be controlled.. maybe it lies in judging ourselves, and maybe judging others, bereft of colours..
for the canvas underneath.

When i read this post again, i'm so sure i'd go "what was i thinking??". But then, this is exactly what i was thinking. Mindspace doing wierd abstractions.

Saturday, March 3

The future is a dream you haven't yet seen.
..Or maybe you have.

Thursday, February 22

Return to madness


I was having a useless debate with myself.

Most debates are useless anyways. Debates only serve to satisfy the intrinsic human desire - 'To be heard and accepted'. The curse of looking outside of self for self assurance is the anomaly of our kind.

Thats what i have come to understand these days. Why else would anyone debate? Its the innate human desire to prove a point. The truth is most people don't really have a point.It's more like i wanna prove myself. So people just speak. The best way to end a debate is to accept what is being said.
Don't bother about its nonsense value. Its the easiest way to end a torrent of mindless banter from a deprived fool.. desperate to prove his desparation. The quicker you accept, the more you are spared to hear. And dont even think of trying to reply back. Because the other end is more keen on being heard. You are only wasting your energy and mocking your intellect, every time you try to be active in a debate.
Oh then, what about the wise? Good question.
Well, the wise dont debate. They converse. And when they see their words going down the wrong tunnel, they stop. Quick to realise, quicker to act. Its just as pointless talking to someone who will never understand, as it is to listen to someone who is hellbent on proving his pointless point. The wise know what they prove and never prove that they know.
By now the first wave of confusion should hit you.

I am unwise. But partially.
This is intended to be the second wave of confusion.

So here i am, taking of from where i started.
I was having a useless debate with myself. Unwise in having a debate, wise in not having it with anyone else but myself. It was a debate between the instinct to let go, and the conditioning that makes me think otherwise. Basically it was a debate between the part of me that wants to run wild, and the part of me that wants to run the rat race. It was late at night, those splendid hours when my mind has sufficient space to expand. A starlit newmoon night and all else quiet. i walked up to the window and in a moment of sheer madness, perilously hung out of the grill with my back arching outside the window. My head thrown downwards, and gaze hitting the dark naked sky with this beautiful breeze siftin thro my hair. I was hoping no one would wake up. I was having my moment. My pupils had dilated and my cerebral arteries were swelling with blood gushing into all parts of my head. Bloodwash in brainland i thought, while my heart was tingling with hesitant fear. I had missed this for way too long to stop doing it. Also, the adrenalin rush was too hard to resist, but then i thought, why must i resist it ?
Third wave of confusion.
It's funny how you tend to think straight when you are looking the world upside down. What had i done to myself i thought.. what had i landed my self in? Conforming and living, and getting sucked into system i so strongly rejected. I was being one of them. I was them. I could hear the laughter inside of me. My years passed by my eyes and i was mute. Time had magnified and i saw it once more.. the years of adoloscence, when falling in love was so easy and so easy it was to fall out.. the years of rebellion, of unrest, the new world order and of the million promises i made to myself, to not be one of them.. the years with my brightest dreams.. these years faded soon as the system was just beginning to spread it's malignancy.. I wasn't aware yet.. teenage subtly faded with initiation into the vodka and nicotine routine, but the mind was still setting free.. atheism, followed strongly by a surge of spirituality.. Liberation, Om, Truth and a sneak view of realms that were literally beyond my perception.. Now i saw it clearly, albeit temporarily and i wanted to get in it. I was quick to realise i wasnt ready, yet. I lacked the conviction. As an undercurrent that slowly surged to mammoth proportions, thro this period the cancerous system was spreading rapidly within me. Every day, a bit of me gave way to the system, without me realising it. And then came the years, when i was the system. Linear, mechanical, boring.
End of footage.

The flashback fades out to a blankness, that is filled up with the dark naked sky.
By now my nervous heartbeats had fallen back into rythm, maybe enjoying their defiance to gravity. I was ready to let go. Of the system, of all its strings and of all i had made myself to believe as important. Certainly life doesn't revolve around B-school calls, IT placements and University admits. Certainly not so much so, that it eats into your mindspace and you lose your ability to be "limitless and free". I was disappointed, not so much on my inability to defy the system, but being contributory to it. Forms, submissions, attendence, classes, career .. money money money, run run run.. what heck was i upto? I wasnt doing any of it for the love of it, i was just faking it. I was done faking. I was ready to fall free, back into life, the way i wanted it. No more conforming, no more systems and no linear routines.
It was a choice, a decision made, to return to madness. To the funfilled ways of being wild again.
To find laughter that is real, a life that is real and a will that is the will to be real.
And with a renewed sense of freshness, i pulled my self back inside to window. I was dizzy with all the blood draining down my head, but the lightness in the head felt good.
I knew it was time to hit the bed, for tommorow is another day and once again i shall wake up to face the world downside up.

Final wave of confusion.
By now you must be confused, if for nothing else, then simply to know why i lectured on debates early on. You would be wise to notice how my take on debates holds true, for only one part of me was debating, only one part of me was trying to prove a point, only one part of me was desparate to be heard, only one part spoke. Fools try.
The wise, well, the wise dont debate. They listen and quietly hear out those who wont listen at all. The wise part of me did just that.

Was it wise in doing so?
Return to madness, cheers.

Tuesday, February 13

The soul's prayer

I was about to wrap up another uneventful day, replete with vain efforts to channelize myself into something slightly more productive. It was around two at night, and suddenly the alarm rings. My kid bro was "waking up early" to study for his english lit paper next morning. He was fairly relieved to see me up so late. Apparently he couldn't understand what a certain poem meant and was hoping i would summarize it for him. I don't blame him, he is only fifteen. But i mildly warned him ( trying to act like 'the big brother' ) "Next time you better make these requests slightly beforehand. Not six hours before your exams!" I had a slight smirk that only i could see, inside of me.
I hadn't done this in a long time, and i wasnt sure that i would be able to understand the poem myself. At the same time, i didn't really want to disappoint my brother so early in his day.
I managed to decrypt the piece fairly well, the piece managed to rekindle my lost love for verse.

I dont know if it made more sense to me 'cause i was high, but it did make sense!

" Lord, Thou didst answer stern and low:
'Child, i will hearken to thy prayer,
And thy unconquered soul shall know
All passionate rapture and despair.

'Thou shall drink deep of joy and fame,
And love shall burn thee like a fire,
And pain shall cleanse thee like a flame,
To purge the dross from the desire.

'So shall thy chastened spirit yearn
To seek from its blind prayer release,
And, spent and pardoned, sure to learn
'I bending from my sevenfold height, will teach thee:

'Life is a prism of My light,
And Death the shadow of My face."

- Sarojini Naidu

Saturday, February 10

reviewing Black Friday.

The Prologue:
I just had to watch Black Friday, first day. I was hearing about this for a long time, i had seen the rushes of the film on pirated, bad quality VCD a year back with no audio. Then i met the wonderful Dev Makhija, who instantly rose in my regard, firstly because he was a first attempt IIM(B) admit who took exactly two days, to chuck it all up (yeah, the dude walked out of IIM(B)) to come to Bombay and make films, rejecting a sureshot fat ass salary and choosing to live broke in an unknown city to pursue this passion. Conviction. I repect that. Its sumthing that eludes me. Secondly, he was AD, assisting the brilliant Anurag Kashyap ( Satya, Shool) in making Black Friday and after having heard from him, the amount of research that had gone into the film, i couldnt wait for it to release.


The Setting:
It wasnt exactly smooth, the turn of events enroute to the theatre and we were finally 20 mins late into the movie, in seats, reserved as guard space to a couple passionately making out in the last row. I still dont get it, why would anyone want to make out on a first day evening show for Black Friday, or any movie for that matter? Surely they had underestimated the film's marketing. First day third show, is a strict no-no.


The Review:
I must admit, i had very high expectations of this film so dont allow anything i say, to act as a detriment in your decision to see this film.
A film is essentially a story being told on celluloid. Black Friday does not have a story. It is essentially a comprehensive documentary on the '93 bomb blasts. Its an enactment of the events that led to this horrible scar on our memories.
In its purpose, the movie is brilliant.You will know everything you need to know about the blasts by the time the movie ends.What makes it worthy of credit, is that it doesn't take a stand. It just lays out the facts, barenaked in front of you. It makes you decide. It tells you what exactly happened and leaves it to you on what you make of it.

The storytelling is languid. You move with the plot. You move with the characters. And then, you move on. To the next sub-plot. Even in the absence of a central protagonist, you slowly get submerged into the movie and it grows on you, yet it refrains from generating a bias.

The actors are brilliantly character driven, and you cant makeout one from the other. KayKay is in his usual power packed, nonchalant avatar in the limited screen time he has. Pawan Malhotra as Tiger Memon is very, very convincing. Even though he is someone you are supposed to hate the most, he somehow manages to evince some thread of compassion from the viewer. As the helpless operative on the run, Aditya Srivastava as Badshah Khan is just mindblowing. If there is one character you really feel for in this assortment of criminals, its Badshah. Probably gifted the maximum screen time amongst the multitude of characters, he has used it to deliver a top notch performance.
Anurag Kashyap's handling of the multi-dimensional plot and moulding it into a single coherent film is worthy of the highest note. Its to his credit that me manages to hold the viewer for three hours without a story as such, without any central characters, without a bias and without any disinterest.
The only complain i have, is the occasional slowness of the movie. The chases and interrogations get too long at times and you tend to get slightly detached from the otherwise gripping plot. Some sequences could have been downsized, although i think it might have affected the comprehensive context of the movie.
To end, a special mention is needed for the courage of the filmmaker. He hasnt winched a bit in boldly naming and fearlessly revealing the real people involved with the tragic friday he so efficiently recreates. He makes no effort the create a curtain of aliases for any character in the film. Commendable effort has gone in from the production team, keeping in mind the extent of the research and the treacherous grounds it treads on.
I hope more producers fund such films, and more distributors buy it.
This movie is a bold step forward for Indian cinema.
No candyfloss here. Finally.

Friday, February 2

not just another day.

Yesterday was perhaps one of the most beautiful days i've seen in recent times. Its strange how over time, i have always associated beautiful days with the events that occured on such a day... good movie, great day at work, results out and you havent failed (yeah!!), results out and you have done well (hell yeah!), unwinding with old friends, unexpected income, a nice date, a beautiful ride in the middle of night... days with some of the foresaid events or atleast one of them, and you go to bed, smiling, staring at the ceiling, minutes before u wrap your eyelids around what was a beautiful day, a day that makes your heart swell up with gratitude. Your head stops tricking you with 'random thoughts', but instead, accentuates the feeling of happiness and gratitude in your heart. So you sleep mumbling a thank you, to god, or someone like that, for all that exists, and the beauty with which you coexist.

So what was so beautiful about yesterday? well, for one, it was highly uneventful, but the whole day i was ranting about how beautiful the day really looked,literally. I have never been so amused by the blueness of the sky. Clear, limitless and free. No haze, no clouds, just clear, crystal clear. Its what you would call high precision high contrast. It was like looking at the world in HDTV. It looked gorgeous. The trees, the birds, the lake, the highrises, the people, the beggars, all looked perfect. Everything in place, as if for some specific reason. And maybe just to tease you further, there was this sweet tantalizing breeze all day. I was amazed at the child like pleasure i derived, by just looking at things, everything looked poetic.
After messing about with my project, as i walked back thro' the tree lined, deserted lanes of IIT,
i distinctly remember at how i smirked at my own self, and i bet people walking around would have done the same. I was just looking incredibly happy about nutin. While the city was casting votes, or rather, not casting votes.. i was tripping on nature!

I could probably go on about how the sunset was the most beautiful ever, with the sun sucking all light as it was sinking in the western sky, and precisely then, the full moon shows up at the exact diagonal opposite end.. while the sky drives you crazy with its colourplay. Every thing forms a silhouette, from the crows on their flight back home, to the bats who set out later. Right now, i think i have lost my plot as to what exactly i'm trying to drive home.. maybe its just pure amusement as to how happy, i could get myself on a calm, silent evening at the terrace, or maybe its a probe into our alienation from happiness, which is inherently, natural.

Tuesday, January 30

dawn

dreams are shattered and illusions fade,
all your reality is long dead.

its been raining all night,
the sky is dark resonating your plight.
there's no sunshine no warmth no shade
and theres no room for your splitting head.

"vast vast meadows but there’s no grass,
limitless sky but where are my stars?
where are the promises
that have brought me this far?"

a stranger you walk as a stranger still,
lost and lonely in a strangeness you want to kill.

the walk turns to run,
in search of a sun.
in search of love and
nothing in return.

and in the freedom of running bereft of reason ,
there rises the sun behind your horizon.
its there but you cannot see,
you're only running towards the sea.

you reach the shore,
and you can run no more.
In solitude and freedom what hits your gaze,
is the setting sun in its golden haze.

its getting dark but u still havent gone;
its dusk,but for you its dawn.
to life a deeper meaning you find,
a meaning apart from the meaning you grind..

you dont have to run, you dont have to flee,
the sunshine's there, if you choose to see.