Monday, August 16, 2010


There is something intrinsically beautiful about dried flowers. Like photographs. They remind us of some beauty we once experienced, the memory of which still lingers, like the musty fragrance of a dried petal.

Which is why she never had the soul to throw away the flowers she received. She liked to preserve them, leave them, scattered in through the intermittent pages of books. So that someday, she turns a page, and is unexpectedly faced with a yesterday.

She said she hated it when people got her flowers. Perhaps, it was the burden of that carefully preserved memory that tired her. Perhaps, she lied. Perhaps, this ping-pong game of today and yesterday is what kept her locked in her own head. Perhaps, she just didn't want what she thought she wanted.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

As the tea goes cold...

It irked her no end that people did not have time to talk anymore. Not the usual whining about work, kids and beyond, not the "discussions" on all things important, but just good, old fashioned, while-you-have-other-important-things-that-can-wait-or-go-to-hell talk. Like that time in college, where she and that friend who always made her laugh snuck out of that very boring class of the pretty teacher, and sat by the football field to ogle at Wasim Akram lookalikes. Or that time, when that friend and she sat on the steps of her then house and discussed life and love. She was in her night clothes and the friend was in a tee and a towel, but the fact that they were out, at 3.30 in the morning, sharing emotional gossip both of them pretended not to care for, gave her a sneaky sense of gladness. Then there was that time, when she fell asleep, as her tears dried on the shoulders of that friend, the one who never ceased to bring immense calm into her always chaotic life.

One day, she hopes to set a table for two, pull out some old, chipped mugs, that hold more memories than tea in them. And she hopes, those friends will come and talk to her again.

Thursday, April 29, 2010


They say that in the deepest moments of our solitude, is where epiphanies lie. But then there are some of us, who just find comfort in solitude, not wisdom. Certainly, not clarity. Being alone is perhaps over-rated, but then so is surrounding ourselves with people. Maybe it is all about finding the balance. Gah! What a perfectly boring paragraph.

One cannot understand why one get into these ridiculous moods where one wants to ponder on the nature of life, the universe and the precise timing of the next door neighbour's pressure cooker whistle (which is perfectly synchronized with the other neighbor's unholy barking bout [yes, the said neighbour is canine] every morning). One is perfectly happy with one's natural state of ignorance for most part of the year, and then comes one of "those days" where
fancies oneself as unrealised potential and feels slightly guilty about not waking and (ab)using one's prodigious but largely dormant genius.

Sigh! One feels like one is in one of those confusing before-and-after type commercials, that being with being black and white and deary and then suddenly become loud and colourful. Only in one's case there are fewer hot people to look at.

Fridays, what does one do with them?

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Once upon a time, she met a secret in a corner. She didn't know what to do with it, so she carried it with her everywhere. Then one day, it threatened to consume her from inside. So she took a chance, and whispered the secret to a dead tree. The tree spoke to the wind, and the wind blurted it out to the mountain over evening tea. The mountain told it to the river in jest, and the river ran to tell the that when she met the pebble next, the pebble called her the evil one, and accused her of stealing his spirit away.

She has been scared of secrets since then.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Look Mommy! No Goosbumps!

So, by now one is guessing pretty much everyone in this country has seen Zoom's new version of Mile Sur Mera Tumhara and hated it. Everyone, with a TV or access to cable television, and time to care that is. A lot of lucky people one knows, just gave the whole hoopla a miss. But then, a good number of these lucky people would give life a miss, if they could (one is always amazed how a lot of people can go through life in a somnolent haze, it's a marvel of the modern times. Or not). Anyways, one digresses from one's original rant about the horror of epic proportions that the Times of India Group so creatively called "Phir Mile Sur".

One really feels bad for Rahul Gandhi at this point. The video pretty much has every progeny that made big by carrying daddy's glorious name to further heights, and our man, the poster boy for dynasty politics, was left out. The video was so horribly wrong in so many different ways, one does not really see why Times could not have gone ahead and have had him also.

Perhaps, for most of us, who grew up around the late 80s-early 90s the new version is so hard to digest because we associate a certain part of our early life with the original song. Less than a month ago, one spent a happy evening with Gee, looking up all these DD things--Mile Sur Mera Tumhara video, the Baje Sargam song, the ek-chidiya bit, and that Pyar ki Ganga Bahe song and on and on--on YouTube and feeling elated. It was like looking at old albums (the ones that have photographs, and not songs in them) kind of remember not just the photos, but how you once were. It's like finding an old faded pieces of yourself.

As a kid one considered oneself very patriotic--one was the kind who passionately delivered speeches for every other Republic Day and Independence Day assembly in school, who meant every word of her "Why I love India" type essays etc etc. One remembers once when one was in 3rd standard, how upset one was because one could not get hold of a tiny paper flag to pin up to one's shirt pocket. One sincerely believed that this was part of the I-day protocol, and one will be considered a second-grade citizen for not having one. one almost felt guilty eating the free laddoo they'd distributed at had to earn that, and without wearing one's patriotism on one's pocket (not sleeve), one certainly had not.

For that kid, Mile Sur meant something. One honestly believed in the whole idea of unity in diversity, one believed that India did indeed have one voice. Even though, growing up, one learns the hard way that along with Santa Clause and Maveli and the Abominable Snowman, a lot of these theories and feelings are just myth and gas, but then there is that child-alter of yours who wants to hold on to them still. Which is why, you still hope for some joy and wine for Christmas and stay up till 3 in the morning to make a pookalam the day before onam. Which is why when you hear Mile Sur Mera Tumhara after some 15 odd years, and see those hundreds of children dressed in green, white and saffron running ahead, you still get goosebumps. And which exactly why, you will hate the new version so much (one WILL NOT call it Phir Mile Sur, unless one is aiming for sarcasm, which right now, one is not).

The new version just pulled the ugly reality which was lurking at the back of your head, and shove it right in your face. It will tell you, that, "Ha! There is NO real India" --not one that belongs to the "real people" anyways. What was then was a media myth, what is today, is also a media myth, only a less romantic one. The "real India" today, has movie stars (and stars, not necessarily actors) as their social idols, has your surname for your ticket to succeed. The "real India" does not care if you work namelessly to train the rural illiterate to harness solar energy, you will still need Shilpa Shetty in a see-through saree to get you in the frame.

The old version still could fit 3 major actors of their time together in one 5 second frame, the new one, each actor needed his own airtime, his own frame, even his own tune. The only people who agreed to share screen space were the children (or were they only the "charity projects"?) and the defense personnel at the end.

So is one surprised? Honestly, no. But one is angry. Because one would have wanted to hold on to one's delusions a bit longer. Because one would still prefer goosebumps to retching disgust.

(If you haven't already, you must, must read Krish Ashok here . Actually, you must, MUST read him here first. Go. NOW.

Friday, January 22, 2010


My favourite colour is green.

Just so that you know.

And by you, I mean me.

Gween :)