Dec 17, 2007


The Ad World has many inspiring stories, some quite known, some unknown. And it becomes more interesting if the stories you hear are from the country. At a time when the world is thinking that India is progressing too slow, and pictures of slums and street children become synonymous with the country, these stories should be unearthed to show the citizens what has been done and can be done. We have reached a point where I hear everyone complaining that the country has gone to the dogs and nothing can be done of it. We see people in the train littering and instead of stopping them, I hear even the youngsters sitting and commenting on the 'metality of THESE people'! It annoys me to hear such statements from the procrastinators. Where is the ideal of a small change making a huge difference? It may sound utopian but I still do believe in the idea of doing your bit and letting it get carried forward. Ok fine, you don't wanna be the messiah. No one asks you to be. All that is asked is to ensure that the place around you is good enough for living. You are travelling in a train and it would not be wrong or 'not your business' to stop someone from littering there. You will be ensuring your own good health to say the least. Thats ten times better than just staring from your seat and mouthing abusing for the accussed while munching on a pack on chips!

There are some stories that make me a little proud. Stories of success, of determination, of how the will to change inspired a lot more.

An example would be the Amul Story. The whole revolution by the farmers that made their life easier and also created a co-operative so huge and invincible that it has set an example. What also inspires are their simple mottos: Of Indianness, of purity, of opportunities, of development of the farmers.

You may or may not find a picture of Gandhiji at an Amul outlet, but you will surely find one of the village ladies lined up with their brass milk pots. The rootedness of the whole system makes it spectacular, as well as the entire organisation of the supply and demand chain.

Another fact that leaves me with my chin in the air and proud of Amul is their objective of Indianness. They aim to throw out the Westernization to pave the way for progress for the country's backward. The fact that they got into the cheese and butter market for the same reasons and that they let the Indian brands live and overthrow Western competition - it all brings an instant smile on my face. I just love the brand.

And so does the country. It can be called the most loved brand. And how can one forget the Amul ads with the cute little nameless girl touching everyone's heart. The witty liners and take-offs on all issues makes it the best social observer, creating an awareness while inciting a laugh. All in play and no offence ever meant!

It just leaves me grinning and wanting to rush for an Amul ice cream just for the sake of it! Yummm...

Dec 15, 2007


A good friend Arun had come down from Banglore, and while meeting up and engaging ourselves in one of our usual long conversations, he threw a thought across that set me thinking. Arun can come up with the most bizarre theories and make you think of them or start arguing with you on the most profiund topics - with the same zest. And the best part about him is one can go on and on talking with him or listening to him for hours without getting bored - be it intellectual conversations or senseless ones!

Among a million other topics that we talked and talked about in a span of around 3 hours, one of them was about Illusion, reality, light and darkness. I can't say we tried to find answers to the endless mysteries of the universe, but we did try and find some questions that toppled our taken-for-granted beliefs.

Light, materially speaking is generally defined as something that takes away darkness. And darkness on the other hand is said to be the absence of light. How strange that these two elements have to depend on each other for a definition, for some identity. Without the other, they are nothing. Light is a kind of darkness sucker. The speed of light is also supposedly the fastest measurement of speed. But then, what is the fastest? It is darkness. Try opening a cupboard door and when you try to close it, even from the most tiniest cracks, darkness seeps in and gets trapped inside, faster than light.

People are normally scared of darkness. But have you observed how when there is too much of light, the first instinct one has is to shut one's eyes? You seek refuge in darkness beacuse light has engulfed you way beyond your capacity. Darkness here seems the more comfortable option.

Darkness is also the most omnipresent of elements. There may be nothing existent, but darkness always manages to find a way through to that place, it seeps in everywhere.

The black hole is another interesting element. Like a dragon living far away in the mountains that people in the past feared, the black hole is the universe's monster that no one will ever dare to near to but everyone fears. Its existence is not disputable nor are its powers. The Black hole as it is called is a 'light-sucker'. It is the ultimate of darkness and sucks away into itself all that is around it whisking it away into the unknown darkness.

But what is ironic and the most interesting here is that this black hole is the result of a star bursting. A star - the ultimate source of light. A treasure-house of light bursts and gives birth to the exact opposite of what it previously stood for. It turns into a darkness churning machine that eats up all in its path.

But this light and darkness is a cycle. The black hole too some day 'bursts' (or whatever it is called) and with all that it has sucked in, another star and another galaxy is formed somewhere else. Its a cycle of birth and rebirth.

This also brings me to think - is life similar to the black hole and star? Complete opposites, yet they are connected. Like darkness and light they are so dependent on each other and it is only the death of one that results in the birth of another. Life's phases are like that. You struggle to throw out the darkess and move towards light, but wothout that darkness, you would not know what light is. It is the darkness that prevents you from too much light and the effects of it, and too much light is as scary as too much darkness.

But the absolute is unknown. Not yet compounded. Both darkness and lights are just elements, but the neutral is not known. Neither is the purpose. Its a cycle that keeps happening, just like life keeps going on. Humans try desperately to find a purpose in life, but is there any?

I have begun to believe that the purpose of life is existing. It is to keep continuing the struggle of light and darkness. That struggle gives it an unparalleled beauty. Life is to live and experience all the light and darkness you come across and then fade away. There is no higher purpose than that. Thats the bets part about it, thats what makes life beautiful - that it exists for nothing else but itself.

Hence it can be lived to the fullest. Hence it has the potential of being so beautiful and surreal that the experience is all that counts - being alive and living is all that counts. Probably thats where the urge to live comes from - the same urge that does not allow you to kill yourself by stopping your breath. You can't. because life knows it has to be lived entirely, and therefore it will not allow itself to be ended in this way!

Dec 13, 2007

Ghost stories of reality

Children - they are said to be wild flowers. As innocent, as fresh and as full of life. But then, the innocence at times gets wrapped in gelatin paper, there is a coat of dust on it, a layer of something thats not as fresh.

"UNICEF’s estimate of 11 million street children in India in 1994 is considered to be conservative. Estimated 100,000 – 125,000 street children each in Mumbai, Kolkata and Delhi, with 45,000 in Bangalore."


Walking down the raod with Mariette last week, we spotted a little girl selling books for children. And as is usual with the both of us, we started chatting her up. We sat on the cement porch outside Mocha's and started asking her about whether she goes to school, etc. We made her tell us what she studies and then talked about how she should study well so that she won't have to sell anything on the streets when she grows up.
"Woh gaadi dekhti ho? Aapke paas bhi aise gaadi ho sakti hai. Phir aap driver rakhna aur sab jagah ghoomna. Aapko yeh sab bechna nahin padega."

"Gaadi? Padhai karne se? naah."

With utter disbelief she clucks a no while we desperately continue our efforts to ingrain the importance of education ito her to some level at least. We start a conversation and ask her puzzles or tell her to recite the alphabet. We discuss her study time-table and stories of how strict or not the teacher is. Slowly her shyness evaporates and she blossoms as a talkative girl willing to show off what she has learnt. She talks about tutions and then calls her sibling who starts boasting about how he secured 99 per cent in his exams.

("We never got that" says Mariette)

He has faith in our motivation stories and believes us when we say that studying harder will make you wealthier with a proper job. He talks about how he studies hard interspersed with anecdotes by his sister of him getting beaten up at school for a prank.

But as the stories lengthen, we realise there is probably a large part of what they are saying that is entirely fictional. They are actually telling us stories in the true sense maybe. They like it. They like the attention. We do not know and cannot even figure out how much of that is actually a fact. Bth of us wonder at the 'innocence' before us - the innocence that kids are said to have and whether is this a part of it. Or does all this smart feigning mean they have lost it? Are these tales just like the fairytales other children like to hear and tell - of ghosts and monsters and tiny elves. Only here, the tales are about their own lives. with the ghosts of poverty and illiteracy.

2. Yesterday, again near Marine Drive there was another small girl selling roses. I bought one from her, letting her select the best one she could see. Even that gave her so much joy! I presented the rose to Lakshi who flipped with happiness. Apparently she had wished for a rose today. There was another one asking for money. She refused to talk to me. I refused to give her money:
"Bhook lagi hai? Paisa nahin doongi, par baith. Khane ko deti hoon."
She took the food I offered her and ran away.

Walking down the street after a few hours I again encounter another girl. She talks to Lakshi and me. And keeps asking for money. She told us how she and her family lived near the maidan and were evacuated. Then they shifted to some other place and again were thrown out. And what struck me was the casual manner in which she said this tale of losing homes! She went to school, but we figured it was not regular because more than attending school, having a place to live was of prime importance. School did not matter then.

At the end, Lakshi gave her a pen, pencil, sharpener and ruler and she walked away in a gay mood.

I wondered again - the government is trying to make primary education compulsory. The country's economy is progressing at a fast rate. The fastest developing age-group is the youth batch. But with even the basic needs not met, is education even considered by children like these? Let alone economy, all they worry about is how much they sell or earn daily. And with their life spent such, are they children as we imagine - the innocent pygmies bouncing and jumping around spreading smiles?

Has their childhood faded away somewhere due to these ghosts that have enveloped their lives and imaginations? Do they even have a dream beyond this life of theirs now or have they resigned to it restricting their imagination to the world they know?

Dec 3, 2007

Records of some radio recordings

I went to my 1st radio recording, thanks to one of my bosses -R. Nice enough to realise that I probably have never been to one,he asked if I wanted to come. Grateful me obviously said yes. And then a big yippeeee in my head. (for those who wish to know- i have reduced my jumping around a bit)

Quiet and ready to absorb I accompanied him. And it was great! A great experience and things I hadn't seen before. And a lot of fun too with the radiospot being spoofed.

And not to mention the fact that I got to ride a bike!! yayyeeeee. I got a drop home by one of the sound engineers there who, it turned out, lived close-by. On the way on realising I never rode a bike, I got a free driving lesson. It is a negligible fact that my feet did not reach the ground and that I was not balancing the bike therefore. What is important that I rode it - gear, clutch, et al - at night... and did NOT crash!

My second recording was fun too. Here I got to experience another first! That of having my voice recorded for radio. Of course I aint kidding. They had one artists less and my boss - Gopi asked me to try my hand. 'Hah!' was all I said to myself. Me and sing??? Hilarious thought. I recalled images of friends plugging their ears or people forgetting the actual tune of the song I sang. And obviously I laughed at the suggestion, knowing it had to be a joke. But it turned out it wasnt. I did go to the recording room, did have my voice recorded, did hearit back and exclaim 'Thats ME???'. Thankfully it was a back-up.

What did get used was me along with the two other kids who were there- all three of us as answering together. So yes, technically my voice is there on the spot! Elated I was, and am, very obviously. After all its the 1st time something like this has happened. Compering is fine, public speaking is fine, anchoring is fine - all that I have done. This I hadn't, and never thought I would. YAYYEEE!

But, question of the day: IS MY VOICE LIKE A KID? IF NOT, WHAT IS IT LIKE???? HUH HUH HUH?

Nov 16, 2007

R.I.P Abhishek Shetty

Abhishek passed away suddenly on 14th Nov, 2007. A message arrives announcing the same and disbelief sets in as I contact those who know him better to get the news denied. But it was true...

Abhishek Shetty - the one who was the life of every gathering, the one who knew how to break a smile on anyone's face, the one who never knew the meaning of not smiling. His spontaneous dances at Rural Camp,the tapori conversations, the total down-to-earth attitude, the enthusiasm with everyone at everything - it was all just so infectious. It is certain that there would not be one person who knows him and had anything negative to say about him, and that is some achievement in life. His 'pehchaan kaun' act is forever etched in everyone minds, making them laugh even at the thought of it.

And to top it all was his ambition, his dreams to become something, his hard work that made him go to random remote places and climb random hills just to unearth some rock that had some importance in his world of geology. And then when faced with my shock at his bagful of rocks and bruises everywhere, he would go on to detail his travels and his experience and what the rocks were.

Rural camp- where he was a part of the 'rock gang' . Not one pic is of him standing straight!

Project Care - This has the best memories of him for me. The kids loved him. He actually formed a fan following among them and everytime we went for a pre-visit, they would ask about him first thing. And he never tired of making the kids see a slice of the fun side of life. His spirit got to them too!

My Ipa volunteer, a comrade when planning ranks, a conductor of pranks, fellow train traveller, partner in crime wen singing ghaati songs, crazy-buddy, smile-distributor and so much more.

I remember the times when we travelled together in the train, or the time we went to Thane together and then talked forlong at the bus-stop with Lakshika, or the millions of times in the foyer when he would tell me stories, or when he was made the Camp sec and told me the problems he faced, or his plans to study and do something... there are soooo many moments... and all happy ones.

If someone manages to achieve something so tough in such a small time, does this mean life for him is over? Abhishek managed to survive with a golden heart and he was taken away!

We will always miss you Abhishek. May you rest in peace and spread smiles wherever you are with that smile of yours.

Nov 10, 2007


Walking along the brim of the universe
I decided to peep into the bowl,
Walking along the edge on top
I could see existence as a whole.
Moving, running, circling
Chasing other forms
Playing throwball- 'There goes a comet'
Or simply cheering along.
A huge hotch-potch of all games
Being played all at once
Clashes, fights, jumps and roars
Everything living a life of its own.
Every form affixed a place
Every game having rules
I could see them, predict or imagine
Believing this is how it works.
But beliefs are fragile,
brittle and unstable,
mirages and illusions,
fairytales and fables.
Looking from the brim,
I couldn't figure it out
Everything had changed
All jumbled around.
A huge upheaval
the games are changing
A change of positions
Chaos between settling down.
Illusions faced me
As old expectations arose
Broken by the suddenness of the change
Images broke down, defroze.
The change was constant,
The illusions around me fluttered,
I looked at the universe around me
Surprised, shaken and bewildered.

10th November, 2007

Oct 11, 2007

Of trials and trials... and much much more

Ok, again I was on a two-month hibernation. Fact is I just didnt find enough words to put down the mess that was in my head. And I wont try to. Some things as i believe are better left abstract and tangled. Just like my thoughts.

With applications and interviews and no answers and more applications and more interviews and lots of confusion and advice, it has been one hell of a time trying to get through a decent company. And its more tough when you know you have potential, which can be honed, and therefore refuse to settle for sumthing sub-standard. Some blame, some call you fussy, some praise your patience, some worry, some are more confident of you than you are - but no one knows whats in your head. And they better not, cos you hardly know it entirely. Flashes come once in a while, all leading in different directions...

Add to all that confusion, a certain difficult personal phase. A wound, a gash that stopped you while you just about to sprint the path towards bliss, and left you hurt and disappointed and incomplete. The wound doesnt heal, in fact, any path reminds you of what it did, of where you were about to go and you were stopped without your fault or the road's. A small para i read somewhere seems very relevant:

I may not get to see you as often as I like
I may not get to hold you in my arms all night
But deep in my heart I truly know
You’re the one that I loved, and it’s been hard to let go.

(The source:

Now... I am a Trainee at an ad agency. Awaiting a positive direction, awaiting a path to life and more. Exploring the world around me, exploring myself. The bubble around me is become larger as more and more things are incorporated. Some leave, some change, but their effects linger. The hope and desire to restoration lingers. And I work to change things...

Aug 2, 2007

When counsellors need counselling...

I have always believed in self-sufficiency. You know yourself best and you are the best person to cure yourself. No one else can help if you are not making the effort.

But there are certain times, certain sides of you, unknown to you, a mystery to you. New experiences, new facts about yourself, being faced with new situations and new emotions, and being so confused as to what to do, how to handle. You are on the look-out for some comfort then, some re-assurance, maybe even motivation.

And even the strongest of people need that at times. Even the strongest have weaknesses.

The strongest are used to being the comforter, the motivator, the stable and rational mind in tricky circumstances.

But what when they need support? What when counsellors need counselling?

Why is it so difficult for them to find that very support? Why is it so that when they go weak, there is a general expectation and belief that because this person is strong, they dont need support and they can pull themselves together on their own? Why is it that all that one gets in the guise of 'comfort' is a reprimand for being weak, or a chiding for seeking motivation elsewhere?

Its a lonely world sometimes. You have to learn to deal with yourself on your own, for the sake of others.

Jul 20, 2007


Human relations are funny... strange... tiring... and most frustrating. They always leave you confused.
You are always stuck on what to do, and every damn thing turns out to be the wrong thing, or it has something which has to go wrong. Something has to prick, somewhere.

If you don't care, you are the selfish, insensitive, snob. If you care, you are the emotional fool, prone to all the hurt in the world.

And it is impossible to stay in between, cos you are just swinging then, going where the wind takes you, losing your will, like a wind-chime - pleasant but tied and pushed by the wind.

I don't know IF I SHOULD CARE. Everytime I do, i feel the prick. I am like a sponge. Absorbing, becoming heavy, taking in every damn drop. It hurts, it pricks, it even tatters and tears me.

But I would hate being the insensitive stone too. I can't.

Why does life's gratification always include a choice between the sponge and stone? Why do both hurt? Can it never be harmless?

Sigh! Maybe i care too much. I still do. But I try and hide it now from everyone, from myself too.But, I am tired of the pricks, tired of absorbing.

I try to change. I try. But, I can't get to being indifferent.

Maybe I am just a fool. But, I still don't know whether to care.

Jul 9, 2007

Buzzy Fly - Mission 'Harass Haem'!!

"It has become so hot. The sun has decided to roast my poor delicate body. Now its impossible to fly around any longer. I will have to get some rest. Maybe a parapet or a tree will do for a while.

Hey what it that? The weather!! O My God, its changing. I can see the clouds coming. I can sense them. I will have to tell my fellowmates and warn them. We have to start planning now and start buzzing around in groups.
'Hey guys! Did you notice the change in the weather? Its here now. Any moment. Come on, lets gang up now. Its the attack season, the season on invasion. Lets prepare our strategy.'
This is what we do every time. We are now buzzing in groups or rather a swarm as you would term it. Oh my God, its starting to rain!!
'Come on warriors, that house there. I see the window open. Lets rush in everyone. Fast fast, move it!

Try and invade each and every corner of the house that you can. The rain will not get us here. We are quite safe. Just be alert of those stupid fly swatters. Have your reflexes on guard.

Oh look there... target spotted. I think it will be good to start attack. Everyone move towards the human. Her name is Haem. Surround her.

Now, everyone, remember your job is to keep on buzzing in her ear. Create as much noise as possible. But never do that in a way that she can see you. Stay out of sight. That is more irritating. The other, groups 2 and 3, you are in charge of the hand and torso. Work like you are playing Kabaddi. You have to touch and fly away. Just remember, touch and fly away, and do it in turns. Never at the same side. When one finishes his turn on one side, the other takes over on the other and then back to one, and so on.

Groups 4 and 5, leg area. Keep moving around it and while circulating, like groups 2 and 3, keep touching and flying away. Remember, fly within sight for some time and then disappear and then come back within sight. All this has to be very quick.

Group 6 should be incharge of food. Everytime a plate or any morsel is spotted, it is your job to attack it. Hover over it, sit on it, and dont let Haem peacefully finish it. We have our right on it too, so while some can distract her by flying around her, the rest can deal with the food.

I will be incharge of overall supervision, and will continue to hover everywhere, and distract as much as possible.

We have begun our mission and the hovering continues. This will be our daily task till the rains stop. And since the windows will not be closed always, we always have a way to enter. Once we are in, who can shoo us out. Sometimes they try and scare us with napkins but we fool them as we pretend to get out of the house and come right back in.

Its invasion time, and our mission -

Jul 5, 2007

Try it!

Have you ever tried talking to them? Have you tried playfully asking them nonsensical question when they come begging to you, like you do normally with kids? And have you had the fortune of seeing the smiles on their faces?

Project Care, conversations at the sea side, smiles while I am walking, talks in the train... lots of times and lots of smiles I can remember.

I say, TRY IT. Its worth it.

The smile that was still there

A ragged pair of shorts on the plump body lay
debating whether to fall or not,
tousled hair more like the styles of today,
dark skin contrasting with the cream interiors of the local train;
staggering steps automatically finding their way.
Approaching you as soon as you are seen taking a bite
from your food, the lunch leftovers,
Hovering and staring, eyeing the bit,
Trying to pick it from your very fingers;
Not asking for money no whining no crying,
Not even a frown, no beggar seemed he,
Walking aimlessly without a word spoken
Just looking for something for a starving tummy.
Used to the urchins wandering in the trains
And stopping the gush of pity that flows,
You just hand over the food to him
As he grabs the offering, reminding you of scavenger crows.
You watch as he gobbles
And are filled with a feeling so different,
It’s pity, though not so distressing,
Sympathy – with more of compassion,
Sorrow – for the state, the extent of wasted lives,
Happiness – for having removed life-taking hunger,
Wonder – at something that so mysteriously arrives,
All mixed up somewhere deep inside,
None ready to subside.
The food is over, but the hunger lingers,
As he looks at you with grateful hope
Though he knows he can’t get any more.
And then he looks at you
With eyes that strike,
Sad, tired, yet twinkling,
Black and beady and uncannily bright;
And then you see the sign, the sign that says it all,
A smile of brown and disfigured teeth,
A smile despite the hunger, despite a lack of reason,
A smile, that has innocence hidden beneath.
Ten years of life or maybe more
Was what it took for that being to be so,
And was the time worth it
When now he has to forage for a meal, a leftover bit;
Yet, the smile is still there…
A satisfaction strangely soars,
A still it is, no picture perfect,
It haunts you, flashes often, out of nowhere,
Humbles, reminds, touches a chord
The smile that was still there.


Jul 2, 2007

Fear!! and Indulgence...

I just cant stop wondering. I just cant stop asking myself. And i just never get any answer.

A question that pops up again out of what I call my toaster brain (cos sumthin or the other keeps popping) is addiction. There are drugs which visibly get you addicted. You KNOW you are addicted to them. But at times there are moments in life that are all new. You seek something, and you get maybe a part of that. In the ever-lasting quest for gratification, there are times when you think that you have achieved what you wanted. And when you get that you are not ready to let go of it. Why is it that fear always leads to so much attachment? You dont want to let go of something, you cant, cos you dont know if that gratification will ever be gained again. You are afraid of the void that the loss will leave. And the emptiness you cant bear.

When you have care, when you have a soothing voice, when you get something that life has never given you, it is the most wonderful time ever. You seek all that you have never got, you look for all that you always wanted, you try to complete all your inner incompleteness through that one channel. You expect a lot. You want a lot. You dream a lot.

And that leaves a larger void when that channel is blocked. When you have to just hold back and stop. All that was wonderful is over, and all your expectations are shattered eve before they began. You hope for a revival, but deep within you know the channel is blocked. The fear comes again. You cant forego all the expectations and the memories so easily and they will continue to haunt you. The shattered pieces will reflect all that was, and make you want to have it all over again. And these very pieces will stop you from being more receptive to other channels now.

The fear is here again. This time it will be the fear of venturing into another channel. Cos the ghosts of the old one still give you shivers!

Material things give so much joy at times. They are the best therapy, the best distraction when you want to get your mind off something that you don't seem to be in control of, indulging yourself is the best thing.

And so i indulged...
I got a funky new haircut... and that too for free.

And, I got a niiicceee new party top... yaaaay! (tho since I hardly ever...actually never... go partying it is not much of use...but well i wanted it!!) And again, not out of my own pocket (feels much much better when it isnt you thats paying)!!

Went roaming the streets of Colaba Causeway with Mariette in the rains, and it was good. I also bought some chappals and beads!!)

I love walking in the rain. I was splashing into all possible puddles as always.

The rains are another therapy that always work for me. They just uplift your mood. They seem to be talking to you, whispering to your mind, and I like what they seem to say. The feel of having raindrops do a little dance on your face, or that of the leaves hustling and talking to the wind as they become green again... its all so nice. And also... someone has said, which i totally agreed to - "I like walking in the rain because it hides my tears" It just washes them away and drains me...

After the rains and the shopping therapy... Am i distracted? Has it helped enough? lets not get into that. For now... yaaaaaaaaay i got new stuff! And yes, if you wish, you are welcome to buy me more :D

Jun 27, 2007

Between life and death...

Two months since i wrote a post... and here I am talking about life again... here I am pondering over it, and here I am just puzzled by it... for the millionth number of time.
It is strange....
It is more than strange... it is something indescribable. No matter how it is, no matter what it gives you, no matter how much it tests you and no matter how draining it is, you still try your best to go on with it. You still try to LIVE... and keep hoping for better, and keep hoping for better.
But is there anything that is 'BETTER?' or rather, is there a better? Or is it just false hope. Every time, there is some colour on your canvas, inevitably it will rain. The picture will get smudged, or rubbed or washed off. Sometimes it may be an almost finished picture, sometimes just a sketch. But all your joy, all your anxiety gets washed away.
Will the picture ever be completed?

At times i wonder - Why is it ME always? At times i wonder if there is any use trying to live, trying to survive. Why does the storm have to hit me only, every time I rebuild my house? Why cant I be allowed to look at my complete picture? Why is the brush snatched out of my hand after just one stroke? Is it any use even attempting it now? Should I just let the canvas be empty now? I wonder, but I don't know.

I keep asking myself that. I keep looking at myself and my life, and i fall into the existential mode. The huge mountains, the sea, the vast existence and my own mortality, all stare at me. What is it that keeps me living? What is it that gives me this desire to keep hoping, to keep trying, to keep experiencing, inspite of knowing that it will all be wiped away, disappear from the canvas and be forgotten? There are cracks, but what is it that keeps me from breaking? Or even if i do shatter, what puts the pieces together trying to always achieve the wholeness again?
TWO MONTHS - of experiences, of life... I could never imagine that just 60 days could store so much. Just 60 days could change so much.
My mind now seems like the funky memory-saving thing Dumbledore had in the Harry Potter series (can never remember names!!!!)
It has so much going on inside, that I dont know what is happening. The two months have filled it to the brim... and its overflowing. And now... there has been an upheaval and everything is spilling out! Its coming back to me, at all times. Its uncontrolled, and its bombarding me. Sometimes it makes me happy, but sometimes it just drowns me. And I have no control over it. I cant stop this, I cant run away. And neither do i want to erase it or get rid of it cos its the best collection I ever had. Its a treasure that has to be cherished. But the treasure needs to be locked away at this moment, not stare me in my face!!

I wonder... how strange it is to have a birth and death on the same date.
You never know what to do - whether to rejoice the birth or mourn the death. I want to celebrate the birth and the existence of the life that was. I want to keep smiling because the life WAS there, and its existence itself is a matter of happiness. But when death occurs, the celebration turns black. It gives you a pain that is unmentionable and indescribable. It makes you mourn the fact that the life wont be anymore, that it wont jump in front of you, that it has just suddenly disappeared. You cant believe it, you cant face the death, but it stares at you, wide-eyed and solid!!

Its there, and its battling against you and your memories of the life that was. Its making the memories hurt you, but you still want to live with them. You still want to hold on to them. You want the life back, you still hope for it. But deep down you know that its dead. You know that all you have are the memories. And those you wont let go of, for anything!

You can face the death, but you can't not celebrate the fact that the life existed. You can shatter with the shock, but you will do so with a smile on your face. The life has given you that smile, and it will always be remembered for that, thanked for that, and loved for that!
IT WAS A SPECIAL LIFE.It was a life worth living!
And like Victor Frankl has said, "Man is ready and willing to should any suffering as soon as as long as he can see a meaning in it."

Apr 21, 2007

Life's pleasantries

LIFE... it makes you wait and wait and wait at times...
sometimes to the point of anger, sometimes to the point of frustration and sometimes even to the point of dejection and despression. It is strange and very very cliched, but after all that waiting, it finally does come. The wait is long but never endless. All that is needed is a mind to stick through and survive the wait, which, i may add, is the most difficult thing ever. Your only enemy is your own self, your own instinct, and that is also your only strength...

And when it comes...
it bloomes, it flourishes and spreads the scent within you, within your soul and every part of you. It enraptures you and makes you like never before, makes you special, makes you THE ONE! You can just see yourself floating over everything then, and popping into the clouds time and again, ignoring the rain, ignoring the thunder because life is with you now and you have the power to face that.

Life has come for me...
or so i think. I do not know if it is temporary, i do not know how good it is. But it does seem like my journey through the clouds, it does seem like my long-awaited perfume for the soul... it is slowly brightening up my insides, spreading the smiles within me...

Like someone has said, and now i agree... It is the roller-coaster ride... where you do not know about the next turn, twist or loop, but you know its thrilling, its fun, its exciting, and you very much like it. The butterflies, tingling in the stomach, the screams, the shouts, the smiles and the fear and anxiety included. Its all there... I can feel it.

And i do hope it lasts... and lasts well... :)

Apr 7, 2007

Is there a cure for sick minds?

It is quite strange to find how, with the garb of modernity, orthodoxy still manages to spread it claws all around and catch hold of the poor free souls who do not wish to interfere with it and do not wish it to interfere. It is surprising to find that in this new millenium, the 'new age', the age of the 'modern', call it whatever you may (u know wat i mean), there are still people who hold 5th century BC values (ok that maybe an exaggeration, but again u know wat i mean!) There are sick mentalities and there are sick mentalities, and I have seen them now!

For me, the idea of family has always been that of an institution that is built more on mutual respect, love and belonging rather than blood ties. it is a bunch of relationships tied together with immense trust. And now even that definition has been challenged. The challenge has put before me a family that lives not on trust but on power games. It is a notion of right and wrong and of having the upper hand, of believing that you are at the top and getting everyone to submit to ur dictatorship. Its hypocrisy at its worst, with the facade of benevolence, and the actual deed being one of the destruction of an individual identity.

It is quite appalling in this age to find parents who suppress their children into the fields they want, control their children as if they were puppets, dont bliv in the concept of privacy for children, and dont have a basic trus and faith in your children. i am just thankful and happy that i have a mother, who, if i say i did not do something, will believe me more than anyone else! Who has the faith that her daughter will be sensible and knows the right from wrong and is strong enough to decide her life... Yes, there will be some restrictions, but she cares, and even she has some basic beliefs that cant ever change, and that concession has to be given!

I say, an individual is an individual, and becomes one as soon as he/she is separated from the mother's body... the identity is different now, and the individual has the basic right to mould that identity, to create a personality. There will be influences, there will be advisors and guides, there will be those who will obstruct you going the wrong way through force, and there will be all kinds of people... but they are all what we can say the 'other', with their own minds and lives. And they have a limited part to play in the individual's life. Ultimately it should be the individual who should be given the freedom to choose, the right to decide... the power to create your own life and CONSTRUCT YOUR OWN REALITY! IT IS YOUR WORLD AFTER ALL, LIKE I SAY!

Apr 4, 2007


Just penned this in between studying... a sorta break between struggling with Ideology and Structuralism or the likes...


I sit upon the very same wall.
Staring, gazing
Looking at the nothingness around it.
Everyday it’s the same routine.
I know I have to climb it daily
I know I have to sit and stare
But still that knowledge is not enough
‘Cos there is the fear of falling
Or hurt that I may have to bear.
What if I do not climb the wall some day?
What if I decide to penetrate the nothingness?
It will be a new experience
An entry to the unknown, a new door,
Made by my decision to stray.
The new way may be a dead end
Or a myth with monsters
But it’s different, I dare say,
Better than the wall
And its endlessness,
Better than the fear of falling.
The door opened may have just rocks.
But, a door has been opened
Leading me out of the nothingness…
Is now another day…
Taking me with my blindfolds
Allowing me to feel it
3rd April, 2007

Apr 3, 2007

Life's unexpected turns...

You are going smoothly... certain doubts in mind troubling you...
But, in time, the doubts clear and then you see the bright sky as you look forward to the approaching good weather that you know is coming...
And suddenly... bump! there is a crash as something jolts you out of this happiness. There is thunder, there is a drak cloud, trying to keep you from moving ahead, trying to get you to stop, and not expect any more happy times!
But, the challenge is to face it and wait for it to clear...

There is another catch though (as always with life)...
Even when you know the fair weather is right ahead for sure, and there is sure confirmation too... you tell urself not to assume. you tell urself that it is wrong to build castles in the air... rather - dont assume and wait for an actual one to materialize. Dont hope so much. if it crashes, it will be shattering!

And between this hope and self-proctection, u are caught... waiting for THAT fair weather... that blissful moment!

Mar 28, 2007

Orkut woes!

Yes, fat, ugly, deprived, and one-track minded perverts exist in the world. That i always knew. And obviously you cant avoid such people cos the world is peopled with them. But, when you do come face to face with them, the least you can do is not run away scared. Hell, they are more cowardly than anyone you would ever know.

And when a public networking site, that has been opened with so-called positive goals of allowing 'bichde yaars' to meet falls prey to their lech and drool systems, as they slowly weave their ugly web into the larger Webworld, its time to realise that the society needs a clean-up drive. I mean, how much possible is it to keep avoiding places - virtual or real, just because such peeps invade these territories? the only possible way i see that happening is if you decide to restrict yourself to a four-walled, curtained room far away from civilization, and technology, living on food grown by urself and never meeting anyone from the 'outside world'. Quite an exile that would be!

And if not the exile, you have only two choices - run, run, run as fast as you can as soon as you spot someone who is remotely close to despo and hide in the first shelter that you find, drawing back all your resources and staying underground for a long time OR just face them determined to throw them out of wherever you are at least because considering they are such cowards and considering they are wrong in violating your space, they will get punished if reported!

And i can assure, that if everyone stops running away as if some earthquake has struck and faces this menace, it can be rid of. but no! Will people ever do that? Hah! What a joke! Will people ever come together and try to fight these menaces? hah! Cant see that happening! All that will be done is one person stands up, tries to shout and the others, equally troubled, just cower down under their seats and shelters, asking that one person to also join them as "nothing will happen, this is of no use...the menaces will not listen and this will continue"! I dare say... "You all are wrong!"

Orkut, opened as a site for friends to meet, did have a flood of friendship requests. But none very harmful. And slowly it has degraded into becoming a site where these cowards seek some sort of vago 'gratification'. Unable to hold themselves in real life, they seek the virtual world... plagiarise pictures, generate obsceneties, invade spaces, revel in troubling others... and as far as i see, this only gives them a false 'power' that they seek and lack in reality. The site needs to be cleaned up... such things eradicated. And yes, some laws updated. How can taking a picture from someone's album and misusing it not be an offense? How can you be allowed to take a picture from someone's album in the 1st place???

CLEAN IT UP I SAY!! the idea is good, and i do manage to keep in touch with people i would have stayed away from for years otw due to lack of contact. But then, I dont want unnnecessary invasions, cowardly menaces to plagiarise my world!

Mar 5, 2007


Aah there i go again... finding it difficult to know what goes on in people's heads and how people think! Again, for like the millionth time, i really really do wish i had a mind-reader. Would have made communication so much more easier for me when u know what the other person may be thinking... but sigh, doesnt everyone wish for that? Sadly, we are humans, the species that is said to be the most 'brainy', but that very fact is what makes it so difficult too. How nice if like animals we were just instinctive, not bothering abt what the other animal thinks and liking, disliking, love, hatred, all being so instinctive and transparent! You know when there is anger, you know when there is affection, you know when there is liking... and its all for real... there is nothing hidden, no mask, no farce, and no performance. If there is fear, it is real fear, and not fear of being wrong, or saying wrong, or doing wrong or falling for the wrong! Nothing is WRONG. And if there is, who cares!
But, we are humans, and we have the fear of the wrong, we have the bane of thinking too much, and so we suffer!

Feb 19, 2007

A Farewell to an experience

We had the TY farewell yesterday in college. waaaaaaaaaah! we're leaving college. we'll now be the 'old, mature EX-Xavierites!' Damn! Strangely i am not sad though. I know i'll miss college and being here and hanging out in the woods or just sitting doing nothing, and the other millions of things that are too much to be listed. The college has made me what i am today, its experiences have moulded me, and there have been all kinds of experiences that are associated with these stone walls in the past 5 years. But I dont want another year here is also another fact i know. I have reached saturation point. No i wanna go out into the world, out of these stone walls and experience more. I will feel nice to just miss the place and be nostalgic.

Yesterday, it was something watching everyone all dressed to kill, in formal dresses, suits and 'whoa' outfits as i call them. Man, i felt like a misfit! That was true Xaviers in its spirits. But the spirits were not that high.

One of the reasons... a batchmate expired a couple of days ago in a car accident at Walkeshwar. Life bid him a tragic goodbye at such a young age. And to think, he was one of us aspiring about the future, scared about the exams and anxious about everything. Such incidents give me the chills. Remind me about the unsurity of life, the suddenness of it, its ability to spring surprises. Nothing can be predicted. A lively, smiling soul can turn into nothing the next instant, and it makes my heartbeat stop! Nomo (that was his name) was in my class last year and took another subject in the final year. Quiet, sweet and always smiling... and to think that smile is now gone. Chills again. And this is the second incident of a classmate passing away, the last being in my 12th when a girl was killed in a terrible train accident. Such things make you reflect on life, make me existentialist.

The farewell did happen though and everyone turned up in masks as the theme was masquerade. I got my play mask frm Ithaka and that even won me the best mask prize, he he! Yaay for my play again! I didnt join my friends for dinner cos i wasnt in the mood. And a shouting from home for having lost something had furthered my bad mood. I was present, but only physically. I left in the end aftr complimenting and thanking the student's council for organising the farewell, while most of the 'students' left for Pollyesters for the post-farewell party that was being organised.

It was a farewell, a goodbye to one world of experiences to allow another world to open up!

Feb 3, 2007

Gut feelings!

It is quite strange but when something is happening and your mind and everything else is working in the right way, there is something else that finds a small voice. The gut feeling interrupts sometimes when something is happening, or you are just acrrying on with what is usual or maybe 'natural', like going with the flow.
And it is most shocking to hear this small voice at these times because, firstly it isnt expected and secondly, it is almost always in opposition to the rest of you!
It is quite wierd, because just when u feel everything is going right, there it is to stun you for a second. And you dont know what to do. You should just continue with whatever's happening and ignore it cos everything seems so very right, or fret over the voice and suspect and dont know what else!! Just dont know!! Damn the gut feelings!!! Such a nuisance... how to handle them, what to do with them???!!!

Jan 25, 2007

Out of Hibernation...

It does seem like I was in hibernation what with no entries for so long. I just feel like entering anything. Sometimes there is so much happening, not physically but within your head that you just dont know what to put down. I just wanted to keep it within my head for some time, waiting for it to register, settle itself, sort itself out.

Lots has happened in this time though...

Couple of weeks ago i fought with some people in the train. I was in the 2nd class ladies compartment accompanying a friend and we were returning home. Adjoining the compartment was a tiny cubicle sort of general compartment with the 'window' between both compartments where people from both sides can see each other. The window is one of those 'leching devices' that the train offers and the men can have a field day throughout their journey peeping into the adjoining compartment. Getting back to the point, that compartment had some 'bhajan-singers' and no sooner did the train start, than they started with their singing and playing. What was most annoying was the loud noise that the symble-like instruments made. It made my head throb and i noticed i wasnt the only one getting disturbed. But everyone chose to bear it quietly. After a while i couldnt take it and despite protests from my friend i got up and approached those people requesting them to please stop their singing as it was greatly disturbing everyone. They had no right to disturb other people for their pleasure. I told them I am not against your devotion or any religious practices, but 'Bhakti' is not singing loudly and troubling others but it is taking the name of God and also respecting other people's space. I asked them to respect our space and please stop. They said they would after one song.
I waited.
And they continued.
This made me even more furious and I got up and started shouting at them. The leader came to the 'window' from where i was talking to them and asked me if it was the 1st time i was travelling in the compartment, and then asked me to go sit down!!! And what was worse was the attitude of the other ladies in the compartment. They chose to put cotton in their ears, and when i voiced out my opinion, told me that it was no use and if i wanted to complain i should go to the police. I had a good mind to tell them what i thought about their complacence, but controlled myself.
And to add to my furiosity was another similar incident that had happened a few months ago when i was travelling in the general 1st class with a few friends. The adjoining 2nd class had some people singing similarly and I did want to get up and ask them to stop as i wasnt feeling well then and the noise was making me feel dizzy and nauseous. But my friend accompanying me stopped me saying that these people have a lot of influence and contacts with the wrong people and if you speak up, it may have bad consequences. That did not deter me and i still wanted to get up and tell them, but i was held down by him. So, i called up the Churchgate Station ARO's office from my cell phone informing the policeman on the other side about the din and disturbance. The reply shocked me even more as he said he couldnt do anything as the train was moving and i would have to go to the Churghgate station office and file a complaint with the train timings, etc and then they would try and take some action if they could. I told them wat about the fact that i am getting disturbed now? And i got no reply from the other end. i just gave a rude thank you and cut the call.

These two incidents have set me thinking.

What can we do if we face any disturbance like this? Is this a sort of religious fanaticism and how can it be curbed? Isnt religion more about caring for each other and respecting other people, then where did this sort of selfishness and mindless 'devotion' come about? Why has the indifference and complacence developed in the minds of people and the general attitude is we cant do anything about it, so we might as well bear it? No one tries. And if anyone does try, he/she is asked to keep quiet and reminded about the fruitlessness of the effort. Isnt a public place for everyone, then how come these people can continue doing what they want without regard for others who have also paid and who have an equal right to that space? The government goes on bothering about material things and making the city into 'Shanghai' but the first step required is developing an attitude in people that teaches them to respect. Respect others, respect space, respect places and respect your city. This lack of respect is the reason for pan stains on "Do not spit here" signs or rude remark coming your way when you try to help someone...
RESPECT... that is what is needed, and minds that are ACTIVE...minds that are more ready to voice their opinions and can realise the result of radical stances rather than just tolerating!


Jan 5, 2007



Picking up a steel spoon,
In it, I can SEE me;
Scrubbing the floor tiles,
Once they’re clean, I can SEE me.
Looking out the window,
The civilization outside roars,
Turning back in, In the window glass,
I can SEE me.
Walking down the road,
Shops have glass doors – shut,
But walking in them with me,
I can SEE me.
The large mirror at the dressing table,
Shows me a world so similar,
In it too, mimicking my actions,
I can SEE me.

Away from these distorted worlds
When I try to find me,
I can feel, I can sense, But I can’t SEE me.


Jan 4, 2007


I decided to try aome random know-yourself tests that I found while surfing online. Hmmm... so these people can tell me more about myself than I know... interesting!!! I found the results and the exercise itself quite hilarious...

MY PRICE TAG: (any takers? he he)

On Average, You Would Sell Out For

Your Birthdate: April 8

You love being in love... so much so that it's very hard for you to be single.
Unfortunately, it's difficult for you to stay in love over time. Too many people intrigue you!
Only your true love will be able to keep you interested over time.

Number of True Loves You'll Have: 2

Number of Times You'll Have Your Heart Broken: 3

You are most compatible with people born on the 8th, 17th, and 26th of the month.

Your Seduction Style: The Charmer

You're a master at intimate conversation and verbal enticement.

You seduce with words, by getting people to open up to you.

By establishing this deep connection quickly, people feel under your power.

And then you've got them exactly where you want them!

You Are 45% Normal

While some of your behavior is quite normal...
Other things you do are downright strange
You've got a little of your freak going on
But you mostly keep your weirdness to yourself

Your Chances of Being a Multimillionaire: 80%

You have a good chance of being a multimillionaire. Better than most people.
You simply have a natural knack for money and the personality for success.

Jan 3, 2007

VACATIONS OVER...(sob, sob)


A yellow bird
from tree to tree.
The grass spying on it.
The wind distracting everyone
as its laugh still echoes after it runs away.
The corn stalks gossiping about
the crazy squirrel scurrying.
The bees and butterflies
trying to chase the wind;
but the smiling flowers woo them back.
The sun taking a nap high above
softly aware of all the activity.

The purring turns into a roar
as the motorbike cuts through the little world
And moves ahead.


Sigh! The vacations are gone. They have disappeared without a trace and we have been dragged back to routine and more. The laziness still hasn't subsided and I have to keep telling myself how bad the situation is and how much i need to do. Maybe that'll "bring some tension into my head" like my best friend says. I desperately need that being the kinds who works best under pressure.

Today, I was feeling quite light. The cold, yet pleasant weather with the end-of-Christmas feel brought a certain bounce in the air which affected me. I was lazy yes, but yet bouncy and very spirited too. I felt like being a prankster, jumping around college, talking away endlessly and just being, just existing. It felt nice, burdenless for once.

Until we got the warning and exam instructions from teachers of course. But well, the spirit finally overpowered the tension for the day at least as I went around shouting greetings and smiling as widely as I could.

For the heavy part, we also had a nice discussion on the evil in man and its inherentness. Svagery, crime, etc and the state of the world today and the attitude and emotions of the people in this age and time. This was a discussion that emerged from a combination of my earlier entry which was still plaguing my thoughts and a study of Golding's The Lord Of The Flies in class. The book talks about the very same thing and is quite a shocker in many ways. Here, children are given the quialities that are generally attributed to adults and it adds to the surprise and shock. All value systems are questioned. For me, that led to a questioning of present mentality and future possibilities. Sometimes I get surprised at the fact that I get so deep into something and get so reflective. In other words, I do surprise myself at such times thanks to my own thoughts and the tangents and digressions and theories they adopt.

Back to the light part - I was enjoying the feel and mood and was cuddling up in my oversize sweatshirt, which I quite liked. And I left college relatively early today too, which is something rare. The best part - the survey guy, Krishna, in college. I filled a questionairre for him and earned 100 bucks!!! Yaaaaaay!

(That I spent 280 bucks in buying Rebecca and Look Back in Anger is a separate fact and I WILL NOT allow that to interfere with my elation on getting some money at least!!)

Jan 1, 2007


What a start to the NEW YEAR! While the whole world rings in the New Year with a lot of celebration, there are a few children who will never see it. It is quite appalling to hear that someone who can be categorised as human could so brutally abuse and kill children.

The Noida killings are quite a shocker for the whole country! At this moment at the onset of the New Year when everyone wishes for good luck and better times ahead, comes the news that the times are getting worse.
Watching the 'censored' visuals on television I wondered, is this like a warning? While we continue to live devoid of all sensitiveness and working in a perfectly mechanic way according to routine, the world is getting disintegrated. With all care and concern disappearing, the meaning of 'human' is just becoming a biological definition.

Sitting at home it is easy to criticise what the government or the BMC or George Bush are doing, and everyone is used to the easy way out now. Who will bother to raise a voice and publicly raise the issue? A small disapproval in front of the idiot box while mumbling a few abuses at the wrong-doer will do! This 'Chalta Hai' that once made Mumbaikars famous will prove to be the death knell. It is the loophole that allows the biggest of problems to stay and stagnate because it is being tolerated and hence it grows. That the problem will explode one day and kill everyone is something that is chosen to be ignored.
The train blasts shook everyone. But life was normal soon enough and that was appreciated as the 'spirit of the city'. Spirit bullshit! It was nothing but a lack of choice. Given an option everyone would stay at home, but then who would feed the family?The bureaucrats try to encourage this attitude so that their faults and incompetencies are well-hidden and ignored. And how well do they do it i must say!Let me NOT get into politics... or my talks will never stop!

Coming back to the word human... 'humanity' now is just a species. Who cares for fellow human beings. Saving your own tail is first priority. Economic progress is certainly there, but that has brought with it many other things. The idea of self-realisation and identity is a great one... and i am a believer in it too. I do believe in finding one's own path in life and trying hard to make one's mark. But that does not mean that the lives of others have to be staked. I had a discussion about Individuality and Unity earlier and the same applies here. Humanity means being one spirit, a whole and feeling for other people, which no longer exists.

If it did, such heinous crimes would not occur. Only one has been revealed through the Noida killings. No one knows how many more lives are being staked for personal gains in other parts of the country or world. No one knows the extent to which this rust has spread and is weakening the iron pillars of humanity cos it is deep inside where not many can see. Only when the building will collapse will the inner core be exposed. Unless someone who knows the insides dares to come into the open and reveal. Unless the iron conquers the other forces and decides to fight back actively. Unless the iron is used, it will rust in the open.

I have a scary feeling inside me whenever i hear of any crime. I have a scarier feeling when i hear of political scams and corruption. I wonder, what if everyone in power becomes such? Will the world continue to exist? Won't extinction occur then? Everyone will just kill everyone else and well, the population problem will be solved, won't it?

I noticed here, E is a very important letter. Unless it is added to human and the species is made HUMANE, it will become the E of EXTINCTION!

Its like this hypothetical situation, What if only carnivores lived in this world?

Anyways, considering vegetarians are still alive along with the cows and goats, i can say...

May you not get eaten up by anyone!