Monday, December 23, 2013

Pillow-Chocolates, Christmas & Cookies!

I've always known that Santa wasn't real. I was a smart kid like that. But I could never resist watching my parents bring Christmas up a notch every year. Christmas wasn't ever about Jesus or Christianity for us: for obvious reasons. However Bengalis have a knack of meddling with almost every holiday that is major for anyone. If my dad had enough information about Hanukkah I'm sure he'd get a bunch of lights and candles and made a day out of it. For me Christmas meant plum cakes, fruit cakes, chocolates and gifts. It was more about how good we've been all year round. It was a bonus day (apart from birthdays) when we kids got cool stuff from a certain Santa person. I remember Mum sneaking chocolates under our pillows at night and Dad - up to his old antics to hide presents from us. This one time was spectacularly special and till date I don't know how he pulled it off. I had my eyes on a particular doll I'd seen at 'Wonderland' (Our closest toy shop) and I made it quite clear that I was lusting after it. On Christmas eve, we were sitting in the living room eating some snacks and watching tv when the doorbell suddenly rang. Dad looks up and mischievously says - go see who's at the door. The gift was kept at the doorstep (awesomely packed of course), and I don't think I need to spell out the contents inside the wrapper. I think that day, I kind of believed Dad was partnering with this mysterious Santa guy to ship us gifts. For the believers out there who bask in the goodness of Christmas spirit - this would have been a perfect story. Years have gone by, and I have been waking up to no chocolates under the pillow on Christmas day for a while now. I think holidays are definitely harder when you are staying away from home; especially when you have so many memories attached to each one of the occasions. This year I'm going to be my own Santa. I think.  - So... rushing home to make Chocolate chip cookies today (cos I can't beat the cakes mum makes). Hiding chocolates under  my own pillow might be too creepy at almost 30, but I'm still contemplating work-arounds. 

Monday, October 14, 2013

Mahabharat: Desire & Destiny or Triumph & Pride.

Within infinite myths lies the Eternal Truth?
Who sees it all?
Varuna has but a thousand eyes
Indra, a hundred
And I, only two.

Jaya is not the story of a great battle. It's not about kings and men or gods & asuras. Then what is it about I thought, as I kept down the book. I gulped down the book over the weekend occasionally breaking for thoughts and inferences over coffee, but the questions remained. As a young girl I'd read Kabi Sanjay's Mahabharata in Bengali, and needless to say it had its influences deep rooted in me. Probably it started even earlier, if I speculate. The Sunday morning telecasts that filled our household with sounds of conch-shells and brave men, whose voices almost thunder-like, reverberated across the lounge-room downstairs where- atleast a dozen people sat wide-eyed in awe of the epic. Sundays were incomplete without the story telling of 'Samay' and the aroma of 'Luchi' slipping in mischievously through the dining hall. However, my fascination with mythology continued over the years as I read more and more of the Greek tales of the Olympian Gods, the Titans, the Giants, the Nymphs; and the similarities of it all raised several questions which remain unanswered (to my fullest satisfaction) even today. When I picked up 'Jaya' I wasn't looking for answers to be honest. But, it did in a way attempt to instigate them again. Devdutt Pattanaik is a clever writer, he is thorough and steers away from 'point of view' style of writing. I appreciate the fact that he has taken references from the great epic told and retold throughout the subcontinent and merely lay out the different versions - almost like putting together a jigsaw puzzle for the audience aka the reader to go figure. No leading questions were asked and no opinions were slapped on. The myth of the story is not the story itself. It's unlike any other folklore about divinity that you may have heard. The myth is real in the architecture of its foundation. It merely looks into the soul of man and his passage through ages of civilization and attempts to answer the never-ending questions about life and death, spirituality and ideas of possession. Jaya over the mind, Jaya over your inner demons marks the essence of the great epic: Not war, not King-makers, not even familial inter-relations. For those who think the story is about a bunch of mythological characters who never existed and hence not worth reading, I'd urge them to don a different pair of eyes for this story alone. Don't read it as the foundations of Hindu devotions, but read it as a common man who wants to survive boldly & with no regrets, who wants to experience this world like a true intelligent being and maybe, just maybe you will be in for surprises which will shape your thoughts and opinions as you go on in your journey of life.

"Myths lie sleeping, at the bottom of our mind, waiting for our call. We have a need for them, since they represent the wisdom of our race."

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

I looked out of the auto to see a dead dog and a romancing couple in the same frame and I thought...

While some died today, some bought new clothes. Peddlers went about selling stuff. Someone made an awesome curry. Someone got mugged in the dark corner of his street. Someone fell in love. Someone was raped and killed brutally. Someone won a bet and filled their pockets. Someone hit a dog on the road and drove on. While some went on romantic dates, someone took sleeping pills to avoid depression. Someone committed suicide. Old couples went on walks in the park while some child was kidnapped from the front yard. Someone shouted a racist slur at the departmental store and someone helped an old lady climb up the stairs. Dilemma is when you don't know whether to rejoice at so much or fall down and cry for the monstrosity of the universe. Even the positive sides have their own negatives it seems

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Mumbai Diaries - Part I

It was raining like a bitch when we landed. Had a major fight at the airport about some insignificant issue we cant remember anymore, but we remembered the fight. We looked clueless, mostly because we hated the fact that we were in a new place - a place we weren't visiting. We were here to stay. Some random Bollywood song playing in the cab - quite apt for a city ruled by Bollywood. Apart from the rain and the cool air outside, there was nothing I liked about the city. Not yet. We were tired to be honest. Two weeks of madness with the wedding and family and parties and sleepless nights, I wanted to sleep on my own bed. Not that the hotel bed was uncomfortable, but my bed rules. The first two weeks went by like a blur. Looking at apartments I could call a new home was frustrating. Standing on the balcony of a 17th floor flat, I saw high rises and slums all in the same view. Something wasn't quite right. People who know me also know the fact that I hate changes. I hate goodbyes. I missed my city, my apartment, my friends. I want to say I hate this city, wholeheartedly. But something holds me back. An insanely expensive mango fruit cream at Haji Ali might have lifted up my spirits at 2 am in the night. There is something about this place that smells promising. I don't know why they call it the city of dreams - but I'm here to give it a chance. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Bridezillas Unite

I wish there was some crash course, or a class I could take which would prepare me for the hazardous, inane, shipwrecking-ly nauseating experience that I have been going through for the last one month. Well, in all fairness - people who get married in less than 3 months notice don't get to whine and crib. The get to throw a fit and transmogrify into the most feared creature of them all.
You may think Bridezillas are an urban myth, an old wives tale or fodder for bitchathons but in reality - they exist. We exist.

The crippling pressure of losing control of things faster than you can say 'crap' is the main cause of bridezilla-ness. Some say that it's hereditary, and some think it's peer pressure. Some scientists  Some bitches say that it's just lime-light hogging techniques... way before the wedding functions actually start. But from my personal experience it seems to be more of an involuntary act, like something triggered by the full moon of idiocy and complete lack of 'sense of decency' on the parts of "wedding planners", READ: people around you, family, the family of the family and some douche bags who exist only to make your lives miserable. (No seriously, these people get up in the morning with a check-list called douchebagggery task list of the day). Some people would also think it would be fun to put the bride and groom on rotating platforms while they exchange love bands. Yes please! go ahead and put a famished, nauseated bride on a revolving pedestal and watch her puke her insides out. Some people would think it's fun to put 500 kilos of jewelry on the bride. Well, if I am not training to be a drug mule heavy lifting illegal materials out of the country then NO, I don't need to wear 5 different types of necklaces.

Anyway, the point I am trying to drive home is. Please be patient with me for the next two months. If you don't want to be on my wrath list, or get your head chewed off, or want me to sit on your face. Be patient. And I swear this will be over, sooner than you think.


Thursday, January 31, 2013

Does it bother you?

That bestie becomes beastie with auto-correct on your dumb smartphone. That you gain the most calories from your most favorite dishes. That you are fatter than all your friends. That you are working at a job that requires you to stand in a hole and keep digging it bigger. That your life sucks more than the black hole. That you are not a millionaire. That your whole life is a not a tireless journey in search of truth & enlightenment but a tireless journey seeking more money and more power. That you only talk about changing the world and fall asleep on your couch while watching the documentary that talks about changing the world. That you haven't done enough for your parents. That you don't have a clear answer to "what are you up to?" That your socks don't match and you always the lose good ones. That at some point in your life you have swam in a pool where some other kid has pee'd. That starbucks has chai tea latte which basically means 'tea tea latte' (which sounds retarded). That you can jiggle your arm fat. That you have given up (mostly) on your dreams. That people eat rabbit meat. That I am writing this in a paragraph and not in bullet points.

If the answer to the above is yes, then you are a human being. And not a floating mummy from outer space. Congratulations. Btw, did you know ancient Incans carried the mummies of their dead kings and paraded them around the city in some sort of wicked celebration. That is hardcore creepster!

#EndlessHumanRant #UntilNextTime

Monday, January 28, 2013

Madcon - Beggin - Took me 2 years to find this song :O

I hate it when this happens! Why didn't I hear this one earlier? I blame my friends, who were secretly listening to this one and grooving away while I paddled through filth music. Mebbe not, I had some good ones to hold on to. But this one man, this lifts me up every time I hear it.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Must. Clear. Clutter

What is it that makes us want to do more? Separates us from the easygoers? Why are we constantly searching for something exciting and, the exciting gets boring the moment we experience it? Why do we envy the silliest things? Part of the questions are answered but parts remain foggy. Like the Delhi cold that everyone has been raving about. I remember a time I used to curse every morning and cry myself to sleep (no seriously cry). I hate cold. And now, I miss it for some weird reason. So weird. My brain, the paradox loves playing these unscientific bizarre-ass games. You hate cold, you loathe cold, aww you miss cold, no you hate cold, I miss boots and sweaters. Slap!

See how I got into a serious mode at the beginning of this post and then went on to write about my silly little problems! I could have easily delved deep into the functioning of human psyche and reached some half-baked analysis which might have sounded like me wearing glasses and writing on a table top with a feathery pen with a pensive look on my face. But no I chose to remain petty. The deal is: I want petty now. But then I also want flying ponies. The point is pointless and my brain plays rude games. Who the hell are you standing beside me eating a coconut out of a giant bagel?

I thought I was dreaming. I was dreaming of a giant bagel with coconut inside it and then I saw this "me" looking person eating it. And I know that "me" was hating it. But eating it nonetheless. Do dreams mean shit?

I went for reflexology, thinking I'll get a relaxing time-out pamper me time. But what I got was 20 mins of pure pain. The 65 year old therapist wasn't easy on me at all. Not only did he point out that I will be fatter than a cow in no time, he also kept shouting at me for being being a sissy and not sitting straight (and trying to run away from therapy). Through the session of what can be summed up as "no uncle, please" and "stop it, sit straight" the words that I remember the most - "so young and you can't sleep. So sad." The 70 year old man sitting next to me was doing some ninja leg exercise and laughing at me. He said.. can you bend your legs like this?? My reaction was .. well..

Anyway, coming back to the real outcome of the coconut-bagel eating, brain puzzling, self-discovery story.... In a far away land, as I sat writing this one 'note-to-self' it read - must - clear -clutter. I'll stick it on to my desk. I'll write it out in my heart and say it loud even.

Must. Clear. Clutter

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

I can't remember this really great line I read somewhere about New Year Resolutions...

So, I am going to skip the resolution part and get to the part that is the meat of this post. No one cares about resolutions anyway! Oh, btw, this was my first new year's eve away from besties, boy and family and I am so proud of myself for not crying/cribbing and making a scene. Also there are these things I read online often and love them, and then forget to note them down, and go back searching for them when I am about to write something : which is plain I have one teeny resolution this year - lines that I love, are gonna go into my online doc on the spot. No Procrastination. Now back to the meat.

Most of the shadows of this life are caused by our standing in our own sunshine... or some such line I read somewhere. Never paid heed or believed it till I lived it. Believe me, I am the last person to caste shadows on my own dreams. I'm selfish like that yeah, but sometimes things that you really really want submerge. And you get lured by things which seem so very important at that time, that you forget (or believe that you don't have) your real dreams. 2012 was the year I broke illusions and followed dreams. I'll give myself more credit this time,  I took myself seriously after a long time and spent some time thinking of what's next. Was change over-rated? Life lists and all that, shenanigans of an idle mind? I gave myself a shot. The plan was to win. Finally, to achieve something and show it to myself. 2012 was all about me I guess!  I'm sure some years down the line, I'd look back and say ..  that was a great year!

But, 2013 is here to turn me around in some way or the other, and I can feel it. This one is way beyond new year resolutions and such. The changes I made are finally rippling down and piling up, and it seems I might have a ticking time bomb strapped to my back.

I don't have an appropriate ending to this post. I say, bring it on!