Friday, February 28, 2014

"Can you feel it?

It`s the excitement of your mind
The old being left behind
And the new blowing your mind

Can you feel it?

It`s the universe in your eyes
The spirit realizing old lies
The nature expanding inside
And the seeds scattered outside"

G. Njaim

Monday, February 17, 2014

How to Write Nothing

I’ve walked into a book café for the first time with the agenda of writing something spectacular while sipping on hot chocolate and looking intent. Too much pressure.

The first floor has the kids reading section that leads to the café. Some of them are running around and I’m getting more and more miserable at keeping a sexy intelligent look about me. There is a young couple sitting across me. They aren’t talking. There’s also a very old man sitting beside me who has been shakily but determinedly turning one page every two minutes of these expensive magazines. I pick up on too. Not Vogue, no…I pick up The Economist. I browse through the Contents and select a story I would be able to fully understand. For the first time in living memory, inflation will drop below GDP growth. That’s a good thing. Growth is great. Now that I know the good news I decide to skim through the article…compares with $9000 in China…continental shift…yes yes, very well. I decide to study the graph, bend real low and peer closely- the blue and green lines begin to blur and I almost fall on my face in the book.

Perhaps this was a bad idea. I pick up Vogue and count eight different ways to put eyeliner. Across the road, through the glass pane I can see a woman with long brown hair and big pearl earrings (they must be really big because I can see them from across the street). Her office is furnished in white and she’s fixing her hair.

Twenty minutes after staring at disturbingly chic outfits in the magazine, I look up to see that the woman is still fixing her hair. I snap the big book shut; it must weigh five kilos and it costs a shameless 800 rupees. Back in Delhi, I had stopped buying glossy magazines because my grandmother couldn’t keep herself from tearing the pages to put them inside cupboards under expensive crockery. In case of magazines like Vogue, she would arrange the papers systematically in her attempt to keep the izzat of the half-naked women intact. 
God I miss her.

I wish to sit on the floor at home and have her lovingly massage my head. And as she rubs the mustard oil in, I wish she rubs in a fantastic story for me to write as well. 

Friday, February 14, 2014

(E)motion Picture

I like how in the movies, they have these songs playing in the backdrop as the credits roll. A song or a tune to affirm your lingering sentiment related to the movie or the person that movie makes you think of. You amble towards the exit door of the theater- a light at the end of the tunnel, beckoning you, making faint promises to you about how you will be able to see the world differently. Even if for a few minutes. 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Box Full of Terrors

Dadar is one station where the Mumbai local train vomits a scandalous number of people at all times of the day, and before the train can wipe its face and heave a sigh it is flooded with people again. If the train could have a face, it would be that of my mother's in her engagement ceremony video, when big round rasgullas were stuffed into her face by bigger, rounder aunties as a gift of congratulations.

I travel in the second class ladies compartment. The only difference between the first and second class is that the latter smells of cheaper perfumes and body odor. On my way back, I take the train from Marine Lines- it is relatively less crowded and you can find a spot where you might not be elbowed by perpetually pissed Marathi ladies getting back from work. 

Today was like any other day. The women around me were quiet- some were staring at their phone screens while others stared at unknown faces, carried away to someplace, any place that provided intimacy unlike that of the train- which is of the forced kind. Then Dadar station came and just like that everyone snapped out of their stupor. I saw a bunch of women get in, they struggled through the seats, spotted a bunch of other women and screamed in delight. The train began to move and the screams of delight turned to wails of delight closely followed by screechy laughter. At the same time in the adjacent first class male compartment something seemed to have triggered a fight between two men; their voices rapidly turning into roars. 

I took you through these three tiresome paragraphs just to tell you that together it was the the most unnerving noise I heard. Bloodcurdling noise. The kind that would make babies cry. And then one did.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Everyone is living the same set of stories over and over again. I've been using a different set of words to tell you the same stories over and over again. I add some fancy phrases to charm you and take away others. This way you are tricked into believing that they are new. Now that you know this, you must not be feeling very nice. Believe me, when I realised it I didn't feel very nice either. This a rut you can't get out of.
But that doesn't mean that you shouldn't try to get out of it.