Thursday, November 29, 2007
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
It’s his birthday. She picks up the cellphone to wish him. The phone shows ‘no network’. She gets up and tries the landline. It’s dead. She dresses and walks to the public phone booth at the end of the street. That’s dead too. Her cellphone is still showing ‘no network’. That's odd, she thinks. What’s happening today? She drives to office. As she greets the front desk girl, she tells her with a big smile, “Guess what? I am jobless. All phone lines are down today!” What? By now her worry has given into panic. She walks to her desk and picks up the phone. What if the front desk girl is wrong. Dead. Her cellphone’s dead too! She rushes out. Without giving in to logic, she tries every phone on the block. People stared at her as she ran from public booths to shops and even to other offices, trying frantically to call him. She starts yelling. “I have to make a call. Can anyone help me?” The traffic sergeant walks over and tells her politely, “Lady, calm down. All phone lines are down today”. But she is past caring. What am I going to do now? I promised to call him on his birthday. He will never forgive me. She starts to cry.
Right at that moment her cellphone beeps. It’s a miracle!
“Happy Birthday darling!”
“Huh??” his sleepy voice responds. “Are you ok? My birthday isn’t until tomorrow…”
Monday, November 19, 2007
Who: Alice, Clyde, Auvese and I
When: Saturday (11/17/07)
Route: Bangalore - Dobbspet - Devarayanadurga
Distance: 70 km from Bangalore
Best Part: Rocks with good views
Description: This is on NH4, the main highway northwest for Pune. At about 51 Km, just past a bridge after the town of Dobspet, a sign on the right indicates the road to the Devarayanadurga. It passes through farm fields, through the town of Urdigere (about 16 kilometers). There is a left detour which takes us through the jungle to the Hill. There are two temples, one is Bhoga Narasimha, which is at the foothill this is a temple with a kalyani. Then there is a road which takes us to another point at a higher altitude to the Yoga Narasimha temple. This is an old structure but well maintained. Climb further up from the temple to the rocks to get a breathtaking view. The wind at the peak is imposing but cool...there are lots of monkeys...good place for rock climbers. There is also a police signalling center. This is only place where we can get mobile signal (all carriers) to make any calls to Bangalore.
Stopovers: Dobbspet and Namada chilume
Fuel Stations: Dobbspet
Tips: Watchout for the water hole on the way to the temple, the settings for this place is awesome. There is also Namada chilume (water springs out of barren rock) which is a beautiful place.
Friday, November 16, 2007
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
It was Parent’s Day at Ro’s school today. Through my school days, these were the most dreaded days as the teachers were usually full of praises for the high graders and for those parents whose children were doomed for mediocrity, there was always earnest sympathy.
But this time, as a parent, things are surprisingly different. The children, all forty of them in Standard 2, performed in various dances ranging from a popular Kannada song to a filmy Qawali. Ro was a part of the goanese song “Galiyan sanchi”. The best part was that the children enjoyed performing and was without a shade of nervousness of being on stage. Their smiles overshadowed the oft missed steps and mis-formed lines.
Most of all, there was no pressure to perform. Some may say it’s a bad idea since pressure goads the child to do better, but I would rather have a happy child enjoying himself than a super-smart wizkid. Thank you.
Saturday, November 03, 2007
A well meaning friend has warned me against using real names in virtual space. It was a very reasonable piece of advice. In the current world of Orkut-stalking and identity theft, it makes so much sense to be anonymous.
I remember when I came across the word for the first time. I was about five. During Pujo in my grandparent’s house in Kalyani. Kalyani then was a well known university town. Though the university still remains, the socio-demographic character of the town has gone through a makeover and the town has lost some of its former glory. Back then, you can imagine that the town had a favorable ratio of pseudo-intellectuals with the demography ruled by either students or retired pensioners. Now, both these groups were the flag bearers of moral, intellectual and cultural values that ‘bengaleeism’ is all about. So you could see its impressions all over town. Not surprisingly when my uncle, then a university undergrad, had formed a students’ association he chose to call it “Anonymous”. I believe it had a lot to do with escaping from libel suits cause they were notorious in a robinhoodish way. Their productive work was limited to the celebration of Durga Pujo through public fundraising. The rest of the year, the club members whiled away their time sitting around a bedraggled tea stall debating various issues from across the world and drinking endless cups of tea on credit. One thing you have to give to a bengalee is that he has an opinion on everything under the universe and that no two bengalees worth his fish fries would hold the same opinion. However, the jewel in the otherwise tarnished crown for this Club was the Durga Pujo which the members celebrated in a befitting manner making up for all the angst they have cause their families and neighbours around the year. It was there, while visiting the ‘pandal’ that I came across the word ‘anonymous’ for the pujo pandal was known as “Anonymous er Pujo”. When I asked my uncle’s friend Ajitkaku what it means, being a stanch communist, he told me it means ‘the nameless crowd who struggles to survive’. This absolutely didn’t make any sense to me for as far as I were concerned, everyone I knew, struggling or otherwise, had a legitimate name, including my uncle’s dog Kalia.
It was much later in school that I understood the true meaning but the thought of being ‘the nameless one’ always made me uncomfortable. To the extent that I have put my name in bold even on secret ballot and on unreciprocated love notes in college and university. The narcissist in me wants the world to know what I think and feel. Pardon me, therefore, anonymous I shall never be...
Friday, November 02, 2007
Thursday, November 01, 2007
For a dyslectic to get tagged for a Writing Meme is almost an honour. Let me begin by a humble ‘thank you’. Shreyasi, my friend, sees a lot more in people like me than she ought to.
Yes, I write from the heart, cause I don’t know where else to write from. Since my brain is impaired enough for me to never have scored even a modest C+ in Spelling. (I took a few hard knocks to get even ‘grammer’ right.) And this never amused my mother. Though the kind Mrs. Johnson, my elementary school teacher, had explained that dyslexia isn’t life threatening, to my mother I was as good as a cripple. And to add to her bouquet of misery, my hand writing continues to pain her. So while my brother’s grades and his school note books were displayed with pride at dinner parties at home, I was warned never ever to bring a guest near my study table.
So, if you want beauty read Sheyasi, if you want logic and common sense read Niladri, if you want to marry the two read Shefaly. Instead, if you are looking for impulsive, artless expressions that aren’t contained by english grammar, then maybe…
When to write?
At all time. Never let go of a passing thought as too trivial or too random or too scant. Hook the thought and write it out.
What to write?
Everything. Life is a celebration and at times of the bizarre kind. Aren’t we lucky we are able to express it in words and in thoughts? It could be the amazement of an unexpected sunset or could be the humdrum of an ordinary life. There is always something to write about in the exotic and the dreary.
Where to write?
Anywhere. Office when the boss isn’t around, home when the folks are busy with TV, airport when flights are delayed, coffee shop when there’s no company, internet cafe with the next guy surfing porn. Doesn’t matter.
How to write?
With a pen and a paper or as I prefer the word processor (note: my dyslexia can create havoc minus Spellcheck). It is usually just the thought and you. Don’t focus on words as much as the expression. Does it say what you feel? Even if it digresses from Wren and Martin stipulations? Is it honest?
Who to write for?
Yourself. If you want to write for an audience join a talk show.
Who gets tagged?
Rambler, a fellow impulsive blog writer, whose prose are honest expressions of being.
Dusty, for his dollops of good humour.
Rustyneurons, writes wonderfully…but currently in hiding for some reason.
Renovatio, for I am sure he wouldn’t write for the meme.