Friday, December 31, 2010

The world through my eyes

I got my new lenses ^_^
They are softer than the earlier ones. Can't even feel that I am wearing them. This time its the same number in both my eyes, so even if they get interchanged, its 'No Problemo!!'

I started off with a large number, not thanks to heredity, but ignorance. I hated specs and I just didn't want them. The number went higher and higher (must be all those sewing and knitting classes we had at school. I was not much of a TV or Computer person). My school had regular medical check ups. I needed specs finally at 6/24 vision. They arrived at the advent of 10th standard. When I wore them for the first time, the world seemed clearer. I felt walls were flying and objects floating. That subsided after a week. My first pair of glasses was amazing. I sat and slept on them...they never broke. But one fine day, they fell 3 floors and that was the end of them. They lasted a good 2 years. Newer frames and glasses were shortlived. I wondered, had I become more clumsy or had the quality of the optometrist sunk?

I moved on... thanks to a number of soft lenses.
And if you think they are the are wrong. The pain and irritation in those initial days is annoying. Once you get the hang of them, you feel nothing at all. The clarity is so much better than specs because they cover the entire iris. However carrying around that bottle of lens solution can be quite a bother. I introduced a couple of my friends to lenses, taught them how to wear and maintain them. The teaching bit is fun too! And coloured lenses are 'tres chic'! ;-)

Whoever invented them... Hats off!!
As Bausch and Lomb rightly quips, "Confidence, contacts and me" :P :D

Thursday, December 30, 2010


Women love shopping they say.

But a teenage girl should avoid choosing her mom as a shopping companion. Difference in tastes can drive you up the wall. Colours, fits, what looks good, what does not, maybe totally different's malls offer such variety. When I am on such a spree with my parents, I prefer trolley pushing. And if they are really huge! it can be a quite a royal pain in the foot. If there was a suggestion box around, I would've dropped a chit saying "We need benches, apart from the home furniture section" :P

Was at RCity today. It claims to be Mumbai's largest mall. But so does InOrbit and RMall. Lovely interiors, amazing brand names adorning different sections, Christmas decorations all around and a food stall at every alternate block. A good place to pamper and treat yourself to a luxurious lifestyle. Best bit... close to home ;-)

Shopping malls can be really tempting places...and with festive offers on the cards...
Wonder what Santa's helper, Jingles would have felt like! Malls would be a one-spot stop to grab all those gifts and goodies for believers...


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

An ode to parenting

Dear Parents,

Ever wondered why your kids lie to you? You think they love hiding things from you. Why they must have surely 'considered' confiding in you.
So what stopped them?
a. A generation gap
b. They have other friends to tell
c. You prefer listening to third persons and outsiders
d. They are scared of your temper
e. You just won't understand

But wait...introspect those reasons one by one
a. Who created that gap?
b. Being an older acquaintance, didn't you as a parent have that chance to be that 'best friend'?
c. Pity the family that ruins its stove for an outsider
d. Are your kids responsible for your short fuse. It's a shame you 'scare' your own child.
e. What makes them judge your understanding capability?

Question how approachable you have been as a parent...some answers lie there too.

I have learnt so much about parenting from you. My kids won't face what I faced. I will give them better than what you gave me...especially temperamentally.
I hate your fights, they traumatise me, they shatter me. I will never fight with my spouse. I did consider staying unmarried once when I saw you guys fight. But that's not really a solution.
You treat me like a an your own whims and fancies. You want me to be what you could not. There is always a tussle between your wishes and mine. We share similar genes, yet we have such uncommon tastes.
You keep telling me to grow up. When would you...would you ever?

Your's lovingly,
Just 20

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

P.S. I Love You

I wish I could snatch you away and take you to a land unknown
A land of no sorrows, a land of no anxiety, of no pain
A land of peace, of warmth, of eternal love
The love that's between us
Where it would be just you and me and no one else...

Selfish in Love? Not really... Just missing you a lot
And any amount of time we spend together just doesn't seem enough
Wanna grow old with you ;-)

Monday, December 27, 2010

Bribe me a bar

Chocolate, you get me craving for you. My ultimate sin! Your brown bosom tempts get me soooo wild!
Ahem, before you judge me... I wonder how can some people hate chocolate. How can they survive a lifetime without it. The sinful taste, the melting luscious beauty. The ultimate bedroom fantasy.
I hate chocolates with nuts in it. I find them an interference. And white chocolate does not really get me high.
I love the dark ones, the bitter ones...the ones that arouse senses and get you addicted.
Bars, melted, grated, frozen... yummm!!!

PS: If only I got paid to have Galaxy for breakfast, Cadbury Caramel for lunch and Swiss thins for dinner followed by a bitter dark chocolate dessert.
Skinny dipping in chocolate does not sound like a bad idea either ;-)

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Bikes! I love them so much that I hate cars.
Imagine driving at 100kmph on Eastern Express highway after 9pm. Or an empty well-lit Bandra link road. Imagine driving a Yezdi!

Today's post is dedicated to my 22 year old Yezdi, Tiger!

Tiger came before I was born. Tiger came before mom and dad got married. Tiger came because dad was crazy about Yezdis and he knew he wanted one of his own. Tiger was his first huge investment. Tiger is a family member. Tiger is our li'l baby.
There are times when it refuses to start and I gently pat its head. And it starts on the next kick. There are times I draw a cross on its head with the Fire temple ash. There are times when I love bathing it on Sundays, painting its number plate (that's rare!). Every year October 7th is Tiger's birthday. Dad got it that fine day in 1988.
I tried riding Tiger. I can now manage to kickstart it on my own and handle the gears and the clutch. My foot barely touches the ground when I sit on it, balancing 144 kg is tough! With dad as pillion, I ride my first love of biking all over the peaceful colony roads.
Kind of surprising to see a girl riding a Yezdi... got those comments from a few male classmates who saw me :P

Waiting for the day when I will go on my first date with Tiger! Just the two of us! ;-)

Saturday, December 25, 2010

To laugh or not to laugh

I am watching this Cyrus Broacha movie called Fruit and Nut. It has a central character named Jolly Maker, who is a simple, hard working middle class struggling bachelor in search of love, money, friends and success....and it portrays typical Bambaiyya life ;-) 
Being an avid Broacha fan, I try not to miss 'The Week that Wasn't' on CNN IBN.

On the Indian scenario, Kunal Vijaykar and Cyrus Broacha can match up to impromptu comedy standards. The Great Indian Comedy show that gave India a bunch of stand up comedians was a first of its kind initiative India. Now the same artists are simply plying on old rephrased jokes. Surprisingly, people still laugh at them.

There are Indian stand up comedy shows, some that had a really sick and irritating sense of humour. The Indianised version of WLIIA which was called Lo kar lo Baat and then... Comedy Circus, Movers and Shakers. Taking British stand up comedy shows like 'Whose line is it anyway' or 'Drew Carey's Green Screen Show' or the radio based 'I'm Sorry I haven't a Clue' ...the definition of comedy seems to differ from region to region. As Indians, we laugh on different jokes. There are some jokes that we don't get.

Thankfully there are Indian sitcoms (though not as good as the ones abroad) that are acceptable and worth laughing upon. Noted examples are Sarabhai v/s. Sarabhai, Khichdi (which did become lame in season 2 and the movie was sick!!), Taarak Mehta ka Ooltah Chashmah (inspired by a Gujarati literary legend).

It is upto laugh or not to laugh ^_^

Friday, December 24, 2010

Last day at work!

Last day at work...
Christmas cheer all around the place. And also the sadness of parting. True I won't be physically working at the Vikhroli office of NASSCOM Foundation, but the 5 week long journey has been really worthwhile =)
Experienced a fun filled yet serious corporate life and learnt a lot of new things. Experimented to the fullest with Photoshop and Premiere Pro...there is scope for more experimentation (which continues in semester 4). Media research came in handy being a major chunk of the work assigned to me. Yes... some expectations met, some not, but overall it was a great experience! I also got a chance to work and spend quality time with my family. Meeting up with old friends, experiencing the winter in Mumbai and enjoying home cooked food... Ahh!! life is gonna be sooo poles apart after January 2nd, 2010!
I wish to and I will continue my association with NASSCOM Foundation. It has been a helluva association!!
My colleagues

Sneha: Thanks for introducing me to Landmark and Mulund
Prashant Sir: For spearheading MyK and lending a listening ear to my ideas and giving me a chance to experiment with photos and social networking.
Manisha: All the best for your exams and yes, I will try the dal khichdi recipe someday
Delhi and Andheri office people who came and went: Thank you accepting me and acknowledging my work
Most importantly, Gouri Ma'am... it was your guiding inspiration that made the entire journey worthwhile. For being the most wonderful team leader and an encouraging boss.
Thanks a million guys! You have really taught me a lot! Looking forward to working again and again and again =)
Gonna miss these days...

Meanwhile, it's Christmas eve... and there is so much to eat! ;-)

P.s. I got a MyKartavya souvenir Tshirt from my organization as a parting gift =D

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The story of December 18th

The story of December 18th did not really start on the said date. It started somewhere maybe in the autumn when the winter was drifting away. It was followed by the mellow spring, the hottest summer, the lashing rains and then winter came yet again. It had a snobbish start which melted away to peaceful conversations. Time stood still, maybe even flew for some moments. Places became memorable, songs defined situations. While people around gave subtle hints, ignorance was bliss. The cold blizzard brought together two fiery hearts, in hiding. The news spread like wildfire. Passionate days and nights of memories... of laughters, of tears, of joys, of sorrows, of trials and tribulations, of fun and celebrations...some lone, some spent on others. When separation beckoned, there was fear, but distance indeed makes the heart grow fonder. It grew stronger with time, it still grows, it's growing this very moment as you read. Through thick and thin, they made their way. Walking untrodden paths, when one fell, the other held on. Meant for many a lifetimes. Made, rather born for each other.
A common identity, a common meaning, sought and achieved. Some shared dreams, some lived realities. They were strangers no more...

Yet why did it seem like they were strangers getting to know each other that fine day?
That fine day of December 18th, when it happened all over again ;-)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Biologically practical

Ahh! the 4 hour long Biology pracs at Xavier's!

Dissections in junior college were exciting. The lab assistant ('lab-ass' as we called 'em) would come with lovely fat worms or a plastic bag full of cockroaches every Friday during Biology practicals. It used to be one week of Botany and the other of Zoology. Similarly our Botany teacher plucked leaves from her garden and got them for our practicals. So, one Friday was spent in peeling leaves and 'mounting the stomatal layer' on slides. The other week was spent cutting earthworms (in 11th) and cockroaches (in 12th). And the dissection box apparatus would put even a surgeon to shame.

I remember getting a slide home and showing it to my parents and saying "see, earthworm ovaries", "see, cockroach skin"... much to their disgusted looks. My slides used to be pretty neat and my dissections accurate. I remember screwing up during my exams though. I cut the cockroach the wrong way, but pinned it up in a way that 'kisi ko pataa nahin chalaa' ;-)

Bio lab was my favourite... I grafted plants there, planted and grew some plants there, saw cockroaches struggling for life in soapwater, drew the best diagrams of my life (you have to be an artist if you take bio)...frogs, lizards, fishes, birds, plants... still have my Biology journal to flaunt 'em. I love the subject till date! And the regular wars between the Botany teacher and the Zoology Sir were 'entertaining'. Pracs were always pre-lunch. Tiring and strenuous enough to get us hungry.

Today my ex-lab partner (now doing her 2nd year MBBS) tells me that she misses me a lot. Reason? Her new lab partner cuts off all the arteries during the anatomy practicals ;-)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

TV hai ya Torture?

There are some channels I strongly feel should be outright 'banned'.

India TV: They call it a news channel. And it is supposedly ranking first in viewership. Magic shows, fake exaggerated controversies, overrated statements, making mountains outta molehills, scary looking (and sounding) anchors. How come our very scientific 'Indian Government and Broadcast Ministry' never thought of banning this news channel that spreads superstition and fear?
Why even Aaj Tak and IBN7 have assumed its footsteps. Star News may seem saner, but its nothing better. What in the world is wrong with these Hindi news channels? Where is the news? Try hearing the Hindi news on AIR. It is a crisp brief sentence that states news rather than opining and giving facts a biased tone and emotion.
DD, thank God you exist!!

Colors: Ok housewives love you! But you don't make sense anymore. If English series have seasons, our Indian soaps have leaps...and mind you, unnecessarily 'dragging' a show. Does 'Balika Vadhu' still portray child marriage? Does ' des laado' (whatever) still harp on the ills of female infanticide? What is Bigg Boss trying to prove? I just came across a community on FB that reads as 'Veena Mallik is a s**t'. And it has many Pakistani followers to it. And marriages on TV WITH the Suhaag Raat!

High TRPs for these channels! I feel like pinching myself.

There are many more...but today I'm in a mood to criticize just these two...

Housewives sleeping with make up on, slow motion movements, silly background tracks, repeatedly turning heads... the ads in between sound more sensible.
And the majority calls it entertainment!! :P

Monday, December 20, 2010

Hail Holy Mercury!

Winter heralds!

You can hear sniffling noses. The breeze playing with your hair gives cold kisses to your ears. Warm teas soothe your parched sore throat. Eating and eating, you wonder why the massive surge in appetite. You pamper your skin with moisturisers. Furnaces come alive. Wardrobes change from cotton to woolen. Shorter days, longer nights.

Seems  yesterday was the lowest dip in temperature in Mumbai (Santacruz). A shivery 14 degrees at night. The trend is expected to continue for a couple of days. Looks like the Northerlies are acting generous. Two years back, I used to travel forty minutes by train to St. Xavier's, boarding at 7am. A thick sweater and a shawl would not suffice as protection in a windy, nearly empty compartment. I still remember when the mercury levels dipped to 10 degrees at 7:30 am in December 2008. That I think was the coldest winter I ever witnessed in Mumbai. It lasted a good two - three months. Anything below 18 degrees is anyways defined as 'cold' to a Mumbaikar. Pune is a lot more colder. Will witness the freezing Deccan winters in January. The coastal ones are milder.

Well, whatever the thermometer may say...
T'is the season to be jolly! ;-)

Sunday, December 19, 2010


That little corner where you are all by yourself. That little area where privacy thrives and interference seldom exists. We crib when someone encroaches our space. We go crazy if we don't get that little 'me' time.
I recently had guests over for a week's stay. Yes, I loved them, but I had lost something. Privacy in my own house. Divided attention from parents. Lack of sleep. Lack of peace. Watching your parents slog for their good treatment, without them even offering to help (what about etiquette?). At one stage, I found office more peaceful and homely. Guests are not something I would look forward to...not when I return home after months and need my parents and my space to myself.

I get a lot of 'me' time in Pune. Also a lot of freedom to live life on my own terms. However it's all the opposite once I get back home. Agreed, there is home cooked food, there is 'your own family', there is 'your own city', there are your 'long time friends'. There is a TV, there is a less hectic schedule, there are liberal sleep timings. But there are times when you wish to break free and go back to that world where no one interferes. Addicted to freedom? Maybe.

So, why no blogpost yesterday?
It was too special a day to put into a few words and call it a daily post. I would prefer to call it a story, an 'endless' one.
I will post 'The story of December 18th' ...soon! ;-)
Till then... Happy reading!

Friday, December 17, 2010

(You'd better) get well soon!

Mohurram today, but no holiday at work. Couldn't make it yesterday. Fever, diarrhoea, vomiting... and I still dont know what dish that I ate led to it. There are two things I hate about my body - my digestive system and my immunity - as weak as ever. I have a reason to not be fond of vada pavs inspite of being a Mumbaikar...they trigger nausea (absurd!). To add to it lactose intolerance :P

Anand Mela tomorrow and a lot of other eventful happenings. My cousin leaves, I meet someone special after ages and we spend the whole day together and what not! But this is the right age for all this I guess ;-)
I'd better be in good health tomorrow or I will regret it bigtime.

One more week of internship left. Handed in all my work. Alas! for the movie, I think it's only gonna be restricted to the promo. And coz' I still love editing, I will make sure I make one in Semester 4... not for an organization, but for myself.

Time to ask for a new task to keep me busy all day and maybe whole of next week.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Kids today!!

They learn words easily...objects, colours.
I, being a single kid never experienced babies growing up. Its a different experience all together staying with a toddler. Weird sleep timings, weird food habits... Those sweet demands like "Let me brush your teeth" (he said bringing me his tiny toothbrush), "I want to sit here" (pointing to my lap), "take medicine, you got bubu na" (bubu = ailment), "you like peanuts, ill cook for you" (stirring them in a tiny bowl)...
Its fun chasing him with tiny cups of bournvita... have mama's, have papa's, have grandma's....
Changing diapers, powdering, bathing, feeding, putting to sleep, sitting a watching nursery rhymes, dancing...
But they are a lot more active than we are. They pick up toys fallen under cupboards, run around the house, don't feel cold while the others shiver... and if you ask them for a kissie, they give you a cute, loud one on your cheek.
I really wonder how he spots food easily, is curious about every object on the table and where did his fascination for cooking come from.
For now toilet training is on.

Can see glimpses of  "great future grandparents" in Mom and Dad ;-)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tweet tweet

So what happens when you have an assignment related to marketing and you hate the subject to the core?

I have to work on a programme called 'My Kartavya' by Nasscom Foundation. Basically work towards popularising it. Making it big (maybe like the 'jaago re' awareness campaign) and making it relevant to the people who have volunteered and acknowledging their work publicly... all online.

I had not logged into Linkedin in ages. Almost forgot tweeting on twitter. My life was all on Facebook or maybe Gtalk. And how can I forget my beloved Blogspot. I disowned the spammy Yahoo and Orkut ages ago. Social Networking has kind of become a part of my work, not exactly...but exploring features on social networking sites has. So Linked In and Twitter is alive again ;-)

I need some sound sleep. Kids don't let you sleep at night, and we as working adults can't sleep during daytime. Don't feel fresh and alive today. And the cold is getting to me. Since when did winter start making its presence felt in Mumbai?

I am still dying to make that movie...why don't things work when you really want them to?
Why don't you get that email when you anxiously await it ? (its more than a month now)
Wonder who is sleeping, who is passive, and why :P

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Come on beta, leave the laptop now. Eat your breakfast in 10 minutes and leave. Kya kaam tha? Kiska phone tha? Arrey when will you sleep. Chalo wake up, wake up or you will get late. Why do you shop at this mall? Arrey why go this salon, our neighbour has a parlour. Why don't you teach me word and powerpoint, what is this ctrl+alt+del? Why do you read in the dark? You talk a lot on that phone. Don't go anywhere after office, come home directly. Why you need a walk? you are already thin! Shee!!! don't touch that dog, it bites, it is mad. Why don't you join us for shopping? I had told you to keep the plates in the balcony after eating, why did you leave it here? Is this a dharamshaala that you will do things at your own convenience? I wish my daughter was like you ...(after 5 hours) ....after you have come, my daughter's schedule has got disrupted. Did you sweep the room before laying the mattress? Let uncle and bhaiyya eat first. Why don't you cook for us today? Here is the washing powder, go wash your clothes. Don't use the washing machine, uncles clothes are put for washing. Come, let's go and buy vegetables. What will you do for lunch? Do you come home only to sleep?

I have faced this, now someone else very close to me is facing it...
What is the link? The same city.

But you will find these 'aunties' anywhere and everywhere. They are an abundant, constantly nagging and atrociously curious species blessed with a high ranging decibel in their vocal chords.

I so hate their breed!!! >_<

Monday, December 13, 2010

Khatta Meetha

Life is bitter and sweet

I made a tiny li'l rough promo like thingy ...
I know the editing sucks, the video quality pathetic and many other complaints... this is just a trial I attempted alone... so I am proud of myself
What else do I expect with two videos and a few photos?
I can do a lot better than this with some encouragement and granted permissions and a li'l more experimentation with premier pro and a better capturing device and...
For now, all I need is the first two ;-)

Tevory coming home today!!! :D
M sooooooo excited!
To hell with monday blues :P

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Mumbai Meri Jaan

You know you are in Mumbai when...

1. Vendors, cabbies, rick wallahs attempt small talk with you.
2. You crave for Bun Maska and Vada pav and the dearest of all, 'cutting-chai'.
3. You call onion as 'kanda' and potato as 'batata'.
4. You call the policeman 'mamu' or 'pandu'.
5. Someone asks you the 'east' or the 'west' side of a particular station.
6. You are a master at the art of bargaining.
7. Traffic jams and long queues don't bother you.
8. You have hung on for dear life at the local door.
9. When you think everyone who lives to the south of you is a snob and to the north of you sucks.
10. You meet Delhiites and feel no sense of kinship with them.
11. Crorepati, Lakhpati, Hazarpati, Chillarpati all travel in local trains daily.
12. If someone calls you "aap", you start laughing on their faces.
13. You love wading through knee deep mucky water in the monsoons, and actually call it ''romantic'.
14. When you value time in seconds and minutes.
15. "Gheun Tak" is your life ideology.
16. There is only one season throughout the year.
17. When there's no place to breathe in the trains but there's place to play cards and sing bhajans!
18. You snigger every time somebody says "Im going to Grant road!"
19. You keep spare candles in your kitchen or store water in drums.

Cheers to 19 years n Mumbai!! and many more to come =)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

For ol' times sake

Sports day was held at school today. Many of my batchmates went and had a great time revisiting the old days, reconnecting with their old friends. Yes, the main attraction was the ex-students race. But I didn't go. There was an excitement about going. But maybe I don't belong there anymore, never felt a sense of belonging there. I have loved Xaviers more than UHS, SIMC more than Xaviers... this has been a common phenomena with me and one more of my close pals. We love our colleges better than school.

Indeed I enjoyed my school days. Some old jokes that we still laugh on. Some nicknames that we still use on eachother. Some lasting friendships that exist till this day. Somehow, there is a disconnect. I found thicker friends and thicker relationships in my college. My family's absence in Pune and the 'friends=family phenomenon' may have contributed to this mentality.

I will be meeting them all again on 18th, at the colony mela. Yes, I love the, rides, handicrafts and!!! =D And reunions are fun when they are once in a while and not once in every week. So the excitement of catching up on the old times stays on till the 18th ;-)
I had a kind of reunion with two of my friends from Xaviers. We met, talked and talked and talked and ate... Huge plans on for the 26th of December. And we met at the strangest of places after two years...a hospital, courtesy my OPD appointment.
These growing up years!!!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Random thoughts at my workdesk

I have been working on Photoshop since morning. Explored lots of new tools and commands today. No wonder photo-editing is so amazing! So I was given this map of India. I had to mark out the districts that have NKN (Nasscom Knowledge Centre) centres. Over around 10 states. Fun!!

So, PS5 extended is finally proving to be useful. I have another 2 weeks more of internship. A movie to get sanctioned and shot. For some reason, I'm being very optimistic. I know this is gonna work. This movie is gonna happen... I will make it happen!
My hands are itching to work on Premier Pro.
Ahh!! I miss smileys on blogspot. Specially the one with horns and halos

My eyes hurt. High on Combiflam. But I am enjoying work. Its like, "Finally, I have something to do." No I am not a workaholic, just bored of leisure and free time. I have a research report to make as well. Thinking of working this weekend at home. Once that report is done, my boss will be 'compelled' not to make me research more and focus more on the movie ;-)

Wish we had psychology in Semester 3, would be exciting to dissect mindsets... especially those of bosses and the corporates one works with. Which reminds me.... Theatre, Psychology, Geography, Indian History =*
Semester 4 = yipppppppppppeeeeeeeee!! :D

Thursday, December 9, 2010

A weird 9th of December

Feel like a pirate with an eye bandaged and shut. Had my chalazion surgery today. Unexpected events striking me today. Movie is finally seeming to work out, a surprise surgery thanks to dad, a strange dream on a certain 'mahal' and a Maharani whose name I would be googling to know if she ever existed...Strangely I saw my laptop also in that dream :P

The OT (Operation Theatre) and its procedures are scary. Admission, consent forms, hospital uniforms and caps. Pretty cold in there too. Those green bedsheets are even more freaky. The Bawa doctor was very sweet!! He talked throughout the procedure, used really thin needles and anaesthesised me pretty well... I could not feel the clamps, the scissors or any thing else. I told him I have a tendency to yell... thankfully he did not give me a chance to. A patient doctor really makes a huge difference!  And then came the 4 hour wait in the ward...sleeping or listening to music. Really comfy blanket though. Had an awesome nap there ;-)

Moral of the story, don't let surgeries or OT's scare you. The real trouble begins when that numbing anaesthesia wears off and you realize the presence of those cuts and bruises. Ouch!! that's bad...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

What's in a name?

Lunching' with office colleagues and bosses, the topic for the day was 'names'. Where do we get our names from? What do our parents have in mind while assigning those collection of alphabets that would later be pronounced as our 'identity'?

Some freaky examples

Names have meanings too. My name is defined in the dictionary as a wine.
I remember this dialogue from the movie Khosla ka Ghosla "Papa aap toh sar se paun tak Kamalkishore lagte ho, par main aapko kaunsi angle se Chiraunjilal lagta hun? Chiraunji toh khaane ki cheez hoti hai... Papa mujhe apna naam badalna hai..."

My company CEO narrated an incident on where she shared a dais with a girl called Vikas and a guy named Parul.

If you have crossed the hurdle of gender, the pronounciation pops in. How does one pronounce Bengali names like Arghya (orgho), Sourya (Shorjo) or many other "A for orange" category names?
A name like mine is mispelt and consequently mispronounced when written in Devnagari. Ever heard the Englishmen rendering a running commentry during an Indian cricket match? They make Bhajji sound like bhaaji (vegetables in marathi) or Ganguly sound like 'gang'-ooo-'lee'!

Some surnames are derived from jobs. Deshmukhs as the heads and Yadavs as landowners. If taken literally, what would a Screwwaala, Batliwaala or Pandit be treated as?

We as Indians get really innovative with names!
We consult Godmen to determine the first alphabet, we have 'naming ceremonies', even a change in the name requires publishing in newspapers about the change 'vide gazette so and so'.

Seriuosly, what's in a name?

The prodigal pal

Hostel life maybe sickening, really sickening...if it had not been for you
Today's post is dedicated to my girlfriends (don't take the literal meaning) - Trisha Das ( Momma), Kamalini Mukherjee (Kombdi) and a runaway bride who was once married to the hostel, Sonia Bajaj (Hateli) ;-)
I'm really missing you guys a lot today.

We may have the most pathetic food, stupid deadlines, ruined weekends on assignments and tests...but we have eachother. And before Sonia springs up and says "I am lucky"... Girl, you are missed. Terribly missed by your friends who are still stuck here. Indeed we make up for it by the slumber parties at your place.

While Trisha makes me fall in love with food, she also gives all the  motherly advice possible. I miss your cotton quilt also :P and the chai biscuit and the monginis trips. Ah!! if I ever break into a wedding, I'll make sure I take you along for company.

My roomie Kombdi may never be around, (like me) but we have our li'l lone times after 10:30pm where we discuss the day and all that happened including skipped dinners and washed clothes and flies and wi-fi and ahem (her) escapades.
Bengali has grown so dear to me... with a Das and Mukherjee around!

Sonia, thanks to you, I don't miss Mumbai, you bring it to Pune for me! The lingo, the thinking, the way of life everything... and yup maybe we could call each other soul sisters. I really would not want us to not be in touch after Symbi (like another of your weird ideas of going solo after grad). Hateli kahin kii!!

You guys indeed have a lot of patience and tolerance power when it comes to me...

Won't write more here...some things are better unsaid ;-)
Just know this that 4th Sem is gonna be a new beginning... for me, for us!! =)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


What is better? 'I' or 'we'?

The biggest fear any identity-conscious individual would have is 'individuality crisis'. When people stop recognizing you for you and link you with someone. "Ah, you must be Mr. Sharma's son." "Oh! that is Sunita's husband." "Why don't you know he is Sodhi's partner?"
That one apostrophe followed by 's' changes the way the world looks at you.

While some people barely notice, the few who notice don't mind it at all. There are people who end up breaking ties because of being recognised as 'someone's something'. Individual perceptions again.
"I can't do this without you", you croon...
Ahem!! "Did you even try it alone?" Don't you think you are not giving yourself a fair chance to try something?

The person you back on may not be around always. Many husbands learn cooking in their wives' absence. Many sons take up family businesses after their dad's death. Even many more students work and learn and pay for their own education. There are many occasions in life when you have to stand for yourself, do things by yourself.

The day an individual realizes that even a shadow is lost after death and that we come alone and go alone, will he stop linking himself with others. But what is the point of individuality when your existence as an individual itself would be lost?

Be there for others (undoubtedly) but don't ignore yourself. Its not selfishness, it's justice to the unique life you have been granted.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Evidence of existence

Today I realise what inspires a person like Makarand Adhikari to conceptualize Office Office and why do we really 'need' the RTI.

A Government job guarantees you a Saturday-Sunday leave, umpteen amounts of perks, incentives, housing and travel facilities and a lot more. But if you are not a Government employee and need to get a simple document issued, you have to take 'n' number of leaves, affidavits, signatures, attested copies, witnesses blah blah.

What are the important documents we need in a lifetime?
A voter's ID, a Birth certificate, an Official identity card, a Domicile certificate, a Passport, a PAN card, a Driving license and now this unique PIN that has come up - so many documents to prove that you 'exist' and 'have existed' in a said country.
Persons with lawyers in the family are indeed lucky. Because even changing an 'i' to 'ee' in your spelling requires a stamp paper and an afidavit. You have to preserve all the salary slips of the company that you work for - to show that you work there. These Govt. officials are not satisfied by a single page 'Letter of employment'

And if you are a student who constantly has been on the move throughout the country, you need a lot of patience and a lot of 'migration certificates'. Marksheets and bonafide certificates just do not suffice. Neither do hostel accomodation proofs and payslips issued by college that suggest that you have 'paid' for a course.

Who should I blame for this?
Government officials or defaulters?
All I know is, my application for a tatkaal passport ( they say it takes a week) is today exactly a month and a half old
Today it is easier to create a clone of yourself rather than fighting and proving that you are unique in existence
Strangely, the passport website does have an RTI tab...
Maybe it was included on public demand :P

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Politics today

Recently all of us dutiful and law-abiding citizens have witnessed an unprecedented  upsurge in the number of juvenile politicos. But is this a constructive mutation in the political genome or is it another political gimmick? The answer varies from one candidate to another. There are some who accept that India is a democracy and subsequently a public dominant country. But there are also some, who aim to dominate both the country and the public. The former catalyses the developmental process, but the latter makes matters worse.
            What is a young politician characterized by?  Why all the hype?
 Here are some reasons:
1)    Youth are enriched with fiery beliefs.
2)    Most of them do not possess any criminal records.
3)    They are usually well-educated.
4)    They add freshness to the election process.
5)    They are quick-witted and take instantaneous decisions.
6)    They are more tolerant to people’s grievances.
7)    Barring a few megalomaniacs, covetous sentiments are a rarity in them.
8)    Compared to quiescent old ‘Netas’, they are embodied with zest and zeal to execute tasks.
9)    Their sense of conviction appeals to the masses.
10) Good looks and a charming personality are an icing on the cake.
The above stated ‘Dus Bahaane’ indicate that positive change is a sure shot phenomenon. However juvenile politicians are also plagued by evils like immaturity, impulsiveness and aggression. What about that?

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Hospitals can be entertaining

I have seen patients giving up and dying in it's ICU, witnessed all kinds of tests, undergone many procedures for myself and mom and dad...all under this one roof! I visited the Godrej Hospital today. Had an appointment with the opthalmologist. Maybe a holiday at office made me choose Saturday. Many offices have holidays on Saturdays, the number of patients made this evident. The doctor who was a happy go lucky Parsee Bawa, supposingly turned out to be dad's friend (it's a small world :P). So I need new specs, got a new number, obviously higher than the previous one.

More than the doctor's visit, I found the wait interesting. Being the 19th patient at the opthalmologist meant a long waiting period. I met a senior from school. She did not recognise me at first. Long conversation on "what are you upto these days?" after a long awaited "Hi".
Then I met my PT teacher from school. He had come with his wife.
Next to me was a Punjabi lady and her husband, both i their sixties. We ended up talking and talking and my headphones lay jobless in my bag. We exchanged numbers and I got to learn a lot from her on old-age ailments etc. They seemed so much in love ;-)
Another teacher from my high school came along with her son. 
And we waited and waited... to see the same doctor.
I also met my Mom's dentist. I remember I had nicknamed her 'cavity' ;-)

The pediatric ward was just next to the doc's room. So many cute li'l kids!! Some had come for vaccinations, some for minor ailments. The pediatrician was again a senior from Udayachal, topper of Batch of 1982. There were infants too. Neatly wrapped up and sleeping coyly. Toddlers were running around the place. It was wonderful watching them :-)

There was a TV mounted on a stand nearby, it played a cricket match. The TV had its own set of admirers. And I love the hospital canteen, get good food there...juices, thalis, name it!!

If I ever practice medicine in the future, it would be is indeed an entertaining place with lots of memories ;-)

Friday, December 3, 2010

Nailbiting, hiccups and all that jazz

I have a very bad habit of biting my nails. So does my mom, so does my grandma. I realise my mistake everytime it comes to opening something with my nails or every time I see how tiny and kiddish my fingers look without long nails. I make a resolution to never bite them again and then resume in my sleep (I guess). I tried growing my nails on a couple of occasions. They broke off quickly...too brittle. While mom blamed it on less calcium, friends thought I had not cut them in a proper shape that they could sustain themselves. I gave up.

I don't know if this happens with anyone else but when I laugh too much I get hiccups. The ones that don't go easily on gulping water. People cough, even choke while laughing and I get hiccups!
Old folklore claim that one gets hiccups when he/she is being missed. I do get mysterious hiccups...the ones that subside with water. 

I know people who touch their noses often during an elocution or sway to and fro while delivering a speech. I know people who are camera conscious and yet camera crazy. Each one of us on this planet is characterised by weird traits...weak stomachs, hunches, paunches, style of walking, posture and what nots!!

It's entertaining observing and identifying such traits....especially when life leaves you with no substantial work ;-)

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Greater good?

They say whatever happens, happens for a greater good. I am seeking the greater good in the past few events that have occurred in the past few days.

If I take the example of my yet to arrive passport OR my lack of inclination towards TOEFL OR even an unresponsive Symbiosis International University.... There was a time when everything happened quickly - the selection, submission of documents, police verification of passport etc.  and I (rather my intuition) said "This is materializing. Everything is falling into place."

If I mention my internship, I was hoping for more work. Two weeks down the line, I don't seem to have done anything substantial. A movie was on the cards and it got scrapped this morning. I was so looking forward to shoot and edit, script and all ready.

If I mention spending time with my friends, that does not seem to happen either. My social life is restricted to lonely walks in the colony. Maybe a few conversations on sms and random plans on facebook. So its me and my loyal TV set most of the times. Or maybe this blog and the internet.

The internet has further worsened my life. Seems to work well in office, gets upset at home. 

So what is the reason all this is happening?
What is the greater good?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Of wishes and fears and acceptance

When I am no longer a mortal
I will dive into the deepest ocean sans fear of drowning
I will walk through fire coz flames would cease to touch me
I will glide ambient heights without being burdened by weight
I will explore dense jungles alone, unaffected by darkness

This could be the reason why
Life is so short

We all have our little myriad wishes. Wishes too risky to be fulfilled when alive. Fear of pain, fear of death, fear of loss, fear of grief...
So how do we manage to
  • Drive on killer roads at 80kmph at 12 midnight?
  • Board those suffocating local trains that cause majority of deaths in a city?
  • Stand in a balcony without a parapet and lean down to look for the vegetable vendor?
  • Leave the gas or geyser on unknowingly?
  • Cross the road patiently with open eyes?
Do we not know the risks? Why these could be more life threatening.

These are just a few instances. I often wonder when people say, "Don't travel by local train, there was a blast there", "Don't go to Rajabai Clocktower, someone jumped off from there", "Don't take that route, it's accident prone" could be your parents, your friends, your spouse, your office colleagues, anyone.

Fate for that matter is scripted, so is death or maybe in the safest situation possible....maybe even in sound sleep when it strikes you. Accidents can even happen at home when you light a match with the gas on.
Concern is justified. Assigning your fears to a place or an activity... does that make sense at all?

Another side of the story: We innately enjoy that concern, that possessiveness. Someone fears for us, for our safety, someone does not want to lose us. They want us safe and sound. And this feeling of being special to someone overcomes all those wishes and fears. It's not that their fears become ours, it's just an acceptance.
An acceptance that you are not alone and that someone else lives for you, lives in you  =)

Expressive love

More than Amitabh and Rekha as an on screen couple in Bollywood, I adore Sanjeev and Jaya. Their movies together, though not many..... be it the timeless Anamika, the emotionally captivating Koshish, the action packed Sholay, the simple Nauker or even the moral Silsila, make one fall in love all over again. After the release of Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, many Sanjeev- Jaya fans still feel that they should have ditched their respective spouses in Silsila and got together. 
I watched 'Koshish' on tube last night....starring Sanjeev Kumar, Jaya Bacchhan, Asrani, Dina Pathak, Om Shivpuri...
A brainchild of Gulzar.

The storyline follows the courtship of a deaf-mute couple, Aarti (Jaya Bhaduri) and Hari (Sanjeev Kumar), as well as the meeting and inclusion of their dearest friend, a police officer blinded in an accident. This interesting friendship is one of many relationships that Gulzar uses to question various ideas of what it means to be able to communicate and whether that gift is truly respected and appreciated.
Communicating through notes, eyes, hand gestures can indeed bring a tear to one's eyes. I have seen many real time deaf and mute couples and the love, adoration and concern that they share is best without words. They understand each other in ways better than us, who have the ability to converse and express verbally.
Their feelings are simple. They needn't say those three golden words or even hear it...they just know.

Truly, Love transcends all....
It occurs like a billion stars exploring beyond realms of the mundane universe, music in all cells of the body, tingling nerves, in infinite universe when two people find a reason to merge their essence into celebration.

Feels wonderful to be in love!!