Feb 26, 2009

The vagrant wind

The whoosh of a wind as it swings past my ear
Whistling a tune, pleasant but unclear
A huge bag slung on its shoulder
The fuzzy fog trapped inside.

Hopping past the meadows
Ignoring the trees that beckon
Brushing the flowers with a touch
Scampering away merrily, grinning to everyone.

A tinge of mischief hidden beneath its folds
Spurts of giggles every now and then
Sprinting across as you look away
Sneaking away to the corner.

In the lands far and near,
As it explores what we so fear,
Rings a hollow laugh, a merry cheer
Left behind by the vagrant that swishes past.

Feb 25, 2009

Verbal Obfuscations

I may be no activist or Gandhivadi. Of course I have lied in my lifetime. But, one thing I do believe in, is speaking your mind.

First lemme straighten things. By speaking up I do not mean go out and proclaim your love for Communism in America, or walk into the Sena office and deliver a speech in Bhojpuri. When I say speak up, I mean be straightforward.

In the easiest sense, this is to avoid all hypocrisy, double facetedness, and speculation. I am a believer of 'a spade is a spade and lets make it clear that its a spade'.

But then, if I believe it, doesn't mean the world should eh? I am not Hitler or Bin Laden.

Now getting to some aftereffects. It's like one big capsule. You have to have the courage to swallow it, it may be bitter, it may not taste anything at all, but in the end it will mostly cure. It may have side effects too.

Side-effects: People not being used to straightforwardness take it in the wrong sense. I have had people suddenly change their behaviour towards me and become rude and arrogant. I simply believe, these are people who can't handle the truth. They don't appreciate frank attitudes and would rather have someone bitching behind their back than in front of it.

It may also get you into trouble. But what the hell!

Cure: You don't have the burden of hiding something all the time. What is, is out there.

It's lighter to travel through life with less of this burden I believe. You are more free, more worried about your life rather than trivial, unimportant things. And most important, you know people like you for who you are, and not for something you seem to be.


Feb 16, 2009

Things and your mind

My most recent discovery:
Getting your mind off things is not the same as getting things off your mind.

We are usually good at just one of these two. It's simple logic. If you can get things off your mind, you wouldn't feel the need for the former. And if you are indulging in the former, well, that's just because the latter is not happening.

To get things off your mind, you need to achieve a certain level of detachment - somewhat like achieving Nirvana I say. You have to 'rise above the earthly' and realise that the particular 'thing' is not that important. Considering you have your entire mind focused on that one 'thing', this can be a bit of a problem of course.

The first one obviously is easier (Proving why I usually end up using that). Read books, tell yourself you have become fat and go to the gym, blow your phone bills, drown in work and then drown with stress, write mindless blog posts, etc etc.

What's my point here?
I was just writing a mindless post to get my mind of something :)

What's wrong with Vanity?

So, lets get this straight. We come alone in this world (unless you are one half of a twin, or multiples of that), and we die alone. That's cliched.

What is not cliched is the fact that we live alone. Yes yes, we are around people all the time and relationships are the most important part of our life, etc. But relationships are not life. People are temporary. Your life is what you live... alone.

So if that is the case, what is wrong when you think about yourself? What is wrong in you making yourself happy, or you talking about how you feel, or you expressing your opinion? Hell, if you won't, who will?

I always believe, the only person who cares the most about you is you alone. So why stop? Why deprive yourself of the love that you deserve? Yeh sure, I do love others. I love my friends, family and all, but I don't discount myself.

Yes I am vain. I won't hesitate in saying that. Cos well, I do love myself a lot. After all, how long can you live with someone you don't love to death?

Anyone has a problem with that? Maybe you never loved yourself enough then.

Feb 14, 2009

A few (read: many) uncanny things that will make you wonder how quirky (or jobless) I am

(Read at your own risk. My advice: skip this post)

1) I don't like biscuits. The only ones I can eat are Pure Magic chocolate and Monaco. I am not very fond of bread either.

2) I get bored of anything and everything very very easily. This also includes people. Sustaining my interest is tough. Which is why I get restless so often.

3) I wanna learn to ride a bike.

4) One of my biggest dream is to go backpacking all over the world. With minimal luxuries, living in the wild and exploring. Maybe on a bike. And scuba dive, and river-rafting, and mountain climbing. And I believe some day I will.

5) I love being a drama queen. Strangely, it makes me feel like i am free somehow.

6) I secretly wish I was acting in theatre. But I get weak in the knees at auditions. I have also secretly wished I had learnt contemporary and Latin dance. :)

7) I will go to jail for mass murder if I try to sing in public.

8) I like collecting books, movies and music. Wait, make that LOVE collecting.

9) I make very good coffee. And experimental food.

10) No male is allowed in my bathroom, not even my brother. I can sense it if he has even stepped into it. I can't stand a dirty bathroom.

11) I can be quite an organisational freak at times. I have to keep things in order, make lists, etc. But again, I can be quite messy at times also. (check my cupboard for proof).

12) I talk to plants, animals, myself, everything. I once tried talking to snail. But it crawled away.

13) I love water - the sea, the rain, swimming. And the breeze by the sea. I can walk/sit/stare by the sea for hours without saying a word.

14) I have got the weirdest compliments from people. One guy once commented - 'you have a very bright back'!

15) I love saying PREPOSTEROUS with a Brit accent. I break into accents or voices while talking to people generally. For no reason.

16) I have been the eldest in the family and youngest outside of the house, wherever. This is one of the causes for my split personality.

17) I like writing little notes to friends now and then. Saying thank you's or anything I feel.

18) I sometimes wish I could be mean.

19) I don't like blonde men. I prefer Latinos. They look really hot I think.

20) On the menu, I'll always look for the item with the most vegetables in it.

21) I can get very very shy at social events and parties.

22) If you call me when I am asleep, I will talk to you, but never remember the conversation the next day.

23) I love babies and kids. Be it animal or human. I have had half hr long conversations with street kids and beggar kids in the train.

24) I sing and dance for myself when I am alone.

25) I like the way it feels in high heels. After 2 hrs though, my feet don't support that feeling.

26) I have laughed continuously for 10 mins without knowing the reason.

27) I am very impulsive. Which is why I get a lot of afterthoughts. I may probably think of 35 better things about myself AFTER i publish this note. But I can also get unbearably practical at times.

28) I write better in verse than in prose. And i love metaphors and analogies.

29) I am a movie buff. But I can't watch horror movies. No matter how lame.

30) I love surprises. Though I haven't ever got one.

31) I love my first name. And I absolutely HATE it if someone calls me Hemlata. Though I love the way it confuses people.

32) I am very secretive, especially when it comes to what I am thinking or feeling. There is probably a side to me which even my closest friends don't know.

33) But I always prefer to speak my mind about what I think of someone. If I am angry with someone, like someone or dont like someone, etc, I will let that person know.

34) I like coloured pens. I used to write all my notes in different colours.

35) I always wished I could play volleyball and basketball. And regret that my school never had any of these.

36) I have a chatpata tooth. At least once a day I get a BAD craving for something chatpata. I don't like sweets that much. I will pick Pineapple cake to chocolate cake anyday.

37) As much as I say I hate too much mush, I am a total softie inside. Gimme flowers and I will sigh to no end. I am a total romantic at heart.

38) I have strange tastes with men. I run away from lovestruck puppies, and mysterious guys will always intrigue me.

39) I love my independence, and I will fight to defend it always. But I also like chivalry.

40) I dream that someday, someone loves me so much that he protects me not cos I need it, but he wants to. As much a tomboy I am, I know I will turn into a total girly girl then.

41) I can't paint my nails. I try, and have to sit with nail remover by my side, always.

42) I hate pigeons. They are stupid, silly and full of shit!

43) I find jeans a very uncomfortable piece of clothing. I'd pick skirts and Chudidars anyday.

44) I get angry very fast and cool down very fast. But if someone has really hurt me, I won't get angry. I will just stop talking to the person forever. And I have actually done that.

45) I love bright colours. To no end. My least favourite colours would be greys, mehndi green and browns. And I can never have too much of white.

46) I have a thing for men with slightly long hair. Better still, curly.

47) I have a mad shoe fetish. Though I don't have money to indulge in it yet. Someday I will have shoes in all colours.

48) I dread watching a movie alone.

49) I have a habit of plucking my eyelashes out at intervals. I have no idea why.

50) I love the few glow in the dark stickers in my room. I also love the way the streetlight dances through the curtains on my cupboard at night while I am falling asleep.

51) I have a strange habit of reading anything an everything... from hoardings to stuff written on the back on ricks, etc etc.

52) I feel a constant need to stay busy and have more on my plate than I can handle. I will never stay happy if I do only one thing. Which is why, even in college, I was into everything possible, and every society that would take me :)

53) I am easily amused by little things, even small whistles and kids' toys.

54) I am a tomboy who wishes she was girly. But again, I love being a tomboy too. Don't ask me, I don't understand it either.

55) Time and again, I feel like picking up my bag and running away to some far off hill or beach.

56) I get strange urges to bite people often. I have bit people's fingers and hands when I get that itch.

57) I trip on Blueberry Cheesecake. And the awesome Wild Berry Iced Tea at Candies.

58) When I am in a serious mood, you won't be able to remember if it is the same person who was going so mad. I call it my extremes.

59) I love it if people call me weird. Or eccentric. Or crazy. Well, that quite proves why they say it too.

Feb 13, 2009


(just a short story I wrote very very long ago)


I am introverted, have always been so. I have never liked being in the limelight too much. The ‘In’ crowd is something I totally despise. I just can’t understand how they can live a life so dependent on others, on their friends; how they can share all their thoughts and feelings with someone else; and dress up and act and behave to impress others. Aren’t they satisfied with themselves? Why do they need others? I remain by myself most of the time; enjoy dressing up for my own pleasure. I am Sanskriti and I live with and for Sanskriti.

Oh yes, Sanskriti is one of the boring types I must say! I have known her since my childhood. Let me introduce myself first. I am Susie, and though I am 4 years younger than Sanskriti, I do know her very well. But she doesn’t know me. She was always scared to make friends, whereas I, quite unlike her, have always been a social person. I hold pride in my numerous friends and the ability to charm people. Sanskriti can’t charm even a dog even if she tries her best! I mean, look at her…oiled hair, no sense of dressing (where does she get these rags from?), cannot talk properly – forget English, always oblivious to everything…

Many laugh and make fun of my appearance. But then, what’s wrong with it? Oil is good for the hair; no one has hair as strong and healthy as mine. Those who have coloured their hair following the ‘trends’ will regret later on. I like my dresses, they are extremely comfortable and don’t suffocate you, or indulge in skin-show. And I speak very well when I am by myself, it’s just that I am not comfortable in company. I have been living a satisfied life, barring a few weird incidents. There are some periods in time when I am completely lost. It’s as if I lose consciousness and when I regain myself, I do not know what happened, don’t remember anything. But then, it just be due to weakness, as I often do not eat; I just don’t feel hungry.

Crazy she definitely is, and these ‘weakness effects’ are just signs of her madness. Living all by yourself will have some effect on the mind! No man is an island and all islands are in deep water. Forget her! I just can’t imagine her life. I live a life where I eat a lot, talk a lot and laugh a lot. Going to the movies, partying, enjoying all the pleasures that life has to offer. I have always been a free bird, with no one to bind me or stop me. I did what I liked, when I liked, since I was a kid. Who needs parents when you have so many friends?

My childhood was a learning process. My father was a strict disciplinarian and my Ma was a deeply religious lady. They imbibed in me their values and morals. I was taught to respect and obey all orders, work around the house, pray regularly, never speak or shout out loud and contain myself. I did try to follow all that, but I guess I am too clumsy. I wasn’t allowed to be friends with the guys, and they were too rough for me anyways. I had a couple of girlfriends, but none too close. I never had much to talk and was happy being with myself. That is the way to live – in all harmony and proper order. It was disastrous for me the day my father died. I was around 12 years old. I felt this deep sense of regret and loss. I do not know how he died, no one told me, and was kept away during his last rites. I was not allowed to even look at the body. Maybe they thought I would get scared. After Pa’s death, Ma’s behaviour towards me changed. She did not talk to me, or care for me. She just shunned me and always kept shouting at me whenever she spotted me. I think the death had affected her mentally. I cooked my own food when hungry, and continued with my activities by myself. She also died after a year or so, how I do not know or remember. After her death, I was sent to an orphanage as any of my relatives refused to accept me.

My Pop never gave me any freedom, always restricting and tracking every movement of mine. I wasn’t allowed to have many friends and boys were a strict no. But I loved hanging out with the boys; they were so much fun. We would play football, climb trees and do all sorts of cranky stuff. Of course Pop wasn’t supposed to know! Mom would ask me to do household chores, pray, etc. But I hated all that. I would mess up the chores purposely. These restrictions in fact egged me further and I tried my best to do just the opposite. They were bearing upon me too much. Finally, one day I couldn’t take it any longer and I killed Pop with my switchblade knife. Everyone was shocked and thought I had gone crazy. Mom now hated me and stayed away. Maybe she was scared! She would occasionally try to discipline me and order me around. But I showed her too that I was not to be pushed around. I killed her too…

I considered the orphanage my home and started living there normally. I got used to the lifestyle and didn’t need much for myself. I got into college and concentrated only on my studies. But, however hard I studied, I never managed to get satisfying marks. College was when these weakness-blackouts increased, sometimes even during exams. But I managed.

Yes, it was the orphanage where I knew Sanskriti properly. I was sent there after I killed Mom as all were now scared of me. Maybe they thought I was a serial killer! Ha ha! She would follow all orders, stay within her room and remain to herself. Most boring I believe! I, on the other hand, got friendly with almost everyone, including the watchman and peon. They would help me when I wanted to sneak out for a party or something. Studies were never my interest. In fact, I hardly studied. During exams I somehow managed to scrape through with a bit of divine and ‘other’ help.

These blackout phases are seriously scaring me now. I recently visited the doctor finally and he too was confused. He did not know what ailed me and thought maybe I should see a psychiatrist or something. I just hope it’s no serious illness. Two days ago I found some things in my cupboard, which did not belong to me. There were some clothes, the modern ‘trendy’ types and make-up. I found some cigarette packets and a switchblade knife and was shocked. There was also a diary with Susie written on the front cover. I did not know how all that came there. Maybe I had made a new friend during these unconscious ‘blackout’ phases that I do not remember. That’s when it started to worry me.

Well, she had to find out one day, and so she will. She found my stuff in her cupboard and wondered whose it was. Of course she doesn’t know me yet, so she is confused. But once she does, she will be shocked, terrified maybe. Earlier I would hide my things at places she never looked at, but at the orphanage there was no option. And it was here that I felt more free and expressed myself more often. That’s how she became suspicious and went to that stupid doctor. But of course he couldn’t find out anything. I can hide myself so well that I bet even the psychiatrist will be baffled. Though I do intend to get introduced to Sanskriti soon. I am eager to see her reaction, because helpless as she is, she won’t be able to harm me of course. I am much stronger. But she has to know me, her opposite, her other half, her other personality ….

Haem Roy

Feb 3, 2009

The fall of the majority

Recently, I saw Luck By Chance. My reasons for awaiting this movie were different (read: Farhan), though conventional reasons too played some part.

But, it was after I watched the movie, or rather, after people I know watched the movie that I had a realisation. All the people I know were divided on their opinions about it. Some liked it immensely, some hated it. And when I asked the reason for hatred - 'It was boring'.

Now, let me clear this. I am not publicising or justifying the movie. But I have a theory as to why the people who hated this movie did so (as I have a theory for every second thing).
The world has gotten used to formulas. They are used to a routine, comfort zones and a set pattern to everything. Even entertainment has a pattern.

Movies for example. They need to have an adrenalin rush. There HAS to be a twist in the tale, and having a surprising or dramatic climax is important. Experimentation is allowed as long as you follow the rules of shock and stun. Luck By chance did not have a climax. It had a very stable pace, no ups and not much downs. And hence, it was disliked by many for 'not having a story/plot'.

According to me, it was not meant to have a strong 'plot', since what goes on in Bollywood is common knowledge. What was the strength was the characterization, and the performances. Yes, it sure wasn't a 'great' movie. There were a lot of flaws, a lot of stretchy scenes, and had a desperate need for better editing. But then, it wasn't that bad either.

Another factor which brings movies to doom I believe is expectations. If you expect too much from a movie, you will be disappointed very easily. On the other hand, if you expect too little, chances are you will really praise it. This is why it gets more and more difficult to predict the success of movies these days.

I believe we should enter a movie hall without expectations. Not affected by hype or lack of it. Opinions are being formed by everyone. And all are subjective. Some out of habit, some cynicism, some surprise and some lack of surprise. No review can be trusted and no opinion adopted as your own.

There is no majority.

Feb 1, 2009

I want to be a politician

Now, this is not a Std 5 English essay, nor is it my SOP to the political parties to get them to adopt me.

I am just trying to see how life could be better. Let me explain.

If I were a politician, I wouldn't have to worry too much about restrictions. My bills would all be paid of course, so I can talk on the phone or use up as much electricity as I wish.

Oh and some cool wheels with a light on it too. Break signals or zoom past the speed limit, who cares. I am allowed, since I would be one of those who runs the country, and cos i make the rules I can break them.

I can be impulsive and whimsical too. I don't need to try and be responsible and all. If I feel like, I can suddenly ban the wearing of underwear. Now of course during the ancient times in India, it was the skimpy generation. So after all that IS Indian culture, and who are we to not follow it.

I can polish my debating skills by fighting over mindless issues. Obviously it is not necessary that I know about these issues. What is important is I can speak nonsense (which I am quite capable of, by the grace of the Almighty). The rest will follow. Oh but I have to be careful to ignore the big issues like terrorism and crime rate and poverty. They are a trap by the opposition.

I have to speak about the small issues only, like an incident at a pub, or a stray cat being knocked off by a parked cycle falling off, or hot tea burning a celeb's lips. Lets ban cycles and tea! After all, who else will look after the minority if not me. We shouldn't ignore these issues.

And if 29 people come together to molest a young girl at a pub, I will not care about the welfare of women in the country. Why should I care about the lack of awareness and empathy among the people, or about the woosies in the law system. It's much better to tear off the root, and just remove all chances of any fun anyone can have. No one has fun, no one misuses it. Simple logic.

Maybe I can shut movie halls to stop the casting couch. Or how about banning cars on the roads to prevent all road accidents.

I haven't been out of India. I can just fly to Australia for a research on the life of penguins, and how they would affect India's ecology. Of course, I would need my family, my neighbour, my barber, my chaiwala and bhajiwali for general help during the research.

I can also be of help to humanity. You don't think I am heartless now, come on. I will give some donations to the families of war, attack victims, with the media being totally in the know. They have the right to know and cover everything (that I ask them to cover).

I will be the best politician in the country I tell you. I won't ever be caught in sting operations, I will make sure I keep all my wealth a big secret from the Income Tax, I will be in the eyes of the media at all the right times, and of course I will visit all your homes every 5 years (or maybe 2, you never know) to ask for your votes. I promise, I won't trouble you at all otherwise and you won't see a trace of me anywhere.

And as for all that keeps happening in the country, 'bade bade shehron mein choti choti baatein hoti rehti hain'. I have my cuppa to bother about. Another cutting please!

(a relevant video: http://in.youtube.com/watch?v=4N0eeu1wahM)