Friday, April 25, 2008

Tag, aur kya?

As I simply have nothing better to do, (exams might be around the corner, but that doesn’t count), I have been tempted into accepting the tag by Marvin, IC. Here it is. Mast bak hai!

Last Movie Seen in Theatre Jodha Akbar. I had been waiting for it for a long, long time. And though it disappointed most people, I found it an entertaining watch.

Too long? Don’t care.

Historically incorrect? Don’t care.

Book Being Read None right now. Exams coming up. Plan to start with Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude soon after that.

Favourite Board Game Has to be Ludo! I’ve played Monopoly and Carrom as a kid, but nothing beats the sheer unpredictability and senselessness of Ludo. Ready for a game anytime!

Favourite Magazine Imagine a cricket-crazy kid who can tell you with unbelievable precision how many runs Dravid scored in the post-tea session in the 2nd test between India and Australia in 2001….that was me till around five years back. Thanks to Cricket Samrat and Cricket World and Wisden Cricket and the rest.

Then one day, I found myself looking at Alfred in the mirror, pulling my front teeth out and saying “What, me worry?” and its all been pure MADness since then.

Favourite Smells Nothing like wet earth. Without the shadow of a doubt.

And yes, the ‘smell’ of idle summer afternoons.

Favourite Sounds The rhythmic sound of drums and bells played together at Durga Puja. I wait for DP every year so that I can just close my eyes and for a moment at least, forget everything but that one sound.

And one more. OK. It’s a very ordinary, commonplace sound, I know. But I’ve always been in love with the sound of ceiling fans. Might have to do with my fascination with summers again.

If I think about it, those big, noisy coolers sound nice too.

What is the first thing you think of when you wake up? Simple. How can I get back to bed?

Worst feeling in the world Many of course. Hard to pin-point one. But being ill and alone at the same time has to be somewhere at the top.

Favourite Fast Food Place McDonalds. McVeggie Burger with cheese. Affordable and fulfilling.

Future Child’s Name You know what? I’ve been silly enough to actually decide on one. Not that I’m going to tell you.

Finish this statement, “If I had a lot of money I’d…” be confused about what to do with it.

Do you drive fast? Sometimes. Rarely, in fact.

Ek baar bahut zor ki potty lagi thi, tab kasam se bahut tez gaadi bhagayi thi!

Do you sleep with a stuffed animal? No. Of course not. Happ!

Storms - Cool or Scary? Dumb Question.

Do you eat the stems on broccoli? Zara hindi mein samjhayyega.

If you could dye your hair any colour, what would be your choice? Black. So that it amounts to not dyeing my hair at all.

All towns/cities you have lived in Patna, NewDelhi, Patna, Sindri, Patna, NewDelhi, Chandigarh, NewDelhi, Gurgaon, Gadhinagar. I wish Bombay is next.

Favourite sports to watch Cricket. Nothing like spending the whole day on bed, watching a test match day from morning to evening.

Football and Tennis are a good watch, but only if there are big names involved.

One nice thing about the person who sent this to you Dumb Question.

What’s under your bed? Two brooms, a discarded pair of floaters, countless number of thrown biscuits and chocolate wrappers, and a whole lot of dirt and dust.

Would you like to be born as yourself again? Yes. Weighing this against that, yes.

Morning person or night owl? Morning, for me, is the most dreadful time of the day. I think you have your answer.

Over easy or sunny side up? Ya Ya…

Favourite Place to Relax My grandparents’ house in Patna, with time suspended.

Favourite Pie Yaar main to ek hi pie jaanta hoon. Chocolate Pie. Wahi favourite hoga.

Favourite Ice Cream Anything with chocolate. Like Vanilla and Strawberry too. Free mein mil raha ho to koi bhi chalega.

And now, because most of the people I could tag have already been tagged, I invite only Calvin and Alien to carry on with the crap.

Also, now that Jezuz has shown signs that he is still alive on Blogger, I tag him too ;)

Monday, April 21, 2008

A Feast Of Friends

Did you know freedom exists in school books?
Did you know madmen are running our prisons?

Amir looked out of his window. On a tree branch, the tallest among all the ones around it, there sat a crow. Black.

We're perched headlong
On the edge of boredom
We're reaching for death
On the end of a candle
We're trying for something
That's already found us

The bird sat still, almost looking dead, as if she was bored. Amir looked at her, almost waiting for it to fly away any moment. But the bird wouldn’t budge from its position, it just stayed there, with eyes transfixed on a spot on the ground below, almost looking philosophical.

Wow, I'm sick of doubt
I’m sick of dour faces staring at me from the TV
Tower, I want roses in my garden bower; dig?
Royal babies, rubies
Must now replace aborted strangers in the mud
These mutants, blood-meal for the plant that’s plowed.

He had thought that he won’t move from the window until the bird did. But she didn’t. Maybe, she was dead. Amir finally gave up, and took his eyes away.

Monday, April 14, 2008

CG Road

I sit down beside a chai-wala, on the pavement, the evening traffic rushing by in front of my eyes. I am tired, I have walked miles around the market in search of the shop Maa asked me to go to, and get this thing she so sorely wanted.

I feel like I’m half dead, the legs hurt and it takes considerable effort to keep my back straight. So I sit down on the pavement, without any thought for decency, place the tea cup on my side and light a cigarette.

Everything feels unreal, as if from a half-dream. The mind feels numb, the noise of the cars and their horns hardly proving to be disturbance.

There is an auto rickshaw at a few feet from me, and having convinced myself that I can’t possibly find the shop alive, I decide that I’ll take this promise of relief and go back to Income Tax, and then to the college. There are not many such promises to be seen around where I’ve sit, and I hope this one stays glued to the spot till I’ve finished my short break.

A few minutes pass by, and a dark man walks up to me. He is carrying several figures of clay, mostly of gods and goddesses, all for sale. This is the last thing that I need right now, and I try not to look the man in the eye, wishing that it puts him off and he goes away. But he doesn’t, he shows me a face sculpture of Ganesh, and asks me whether I would like to take it.

I try to get rid of him without any more conversation and not be rude at the same time, something that always requires a lot of effort. I say that it’s nice but I don’t have any money. He of course doesn’t listen to it, my clothes and demeanour betray me. He persists, saying that he could give me a handsome discount if I like the thing so much. I stop listening and concentrate once more on the traffic, the mind going numb again.

I give the rickshaw another look, the driver sits on the front seat, relaxed, doesn’t seem to be in any hurry. But I know I am stretching my luck, and its time I get going. The dark man meanwhile stops speaking, and instead just stares at me with almost accusing eyes. I look at him straight for the first time, pull both my front pockets out, showing that they don’t have any money, hoping that he would finally take pity on me and leave.

The tea is finished, and so is the cigarette. The auto-wala sits on his seat as before. The dark man stares at me as before. The cars rush by me as before. I get up, with some effort, planning to take the rickshaw.

But as if in a dream, a real dream this time, as soon as I rise to my feet, the dark man and the auto rickshaw leave, almost together, as if this was a joke they had planned on me beforehand.

The tea is finished, and so is the cigarette. The work is not done. The auto rickshaw has left, and so has the dark man. I am tired, and I now have to walk to the next red light almost a kilometre away, just to get a ride.

Have you ever felt that the whole world is against you in some dark, unbelievable conspiracy? I have.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Ran Out

Somewhere in the icy cold mountains of Kashmir, a soldier woke up this morning. He brushed his teeth, took a freezing bath, and dried himself with his night clothes. The soldier then wore his uniform, put on his belt and gave himself a short glance in the small table mirror beside his bed. He finally put on his army boots, and marched out of his room looking like a man on a mission.


Somewhere in the boiling hot plains of Delhi, Amir woke up this morning. He brushed his teeth, took a nominal bath, and dried himself unnecessarily with a towel. Amir then wore his kurta and jeans, put on his belt and gave himself a rather self-conscious, prolonged stare in the large mirror opposite his bed. He finally put on his floaters, and marched out of his room trying very hard to look like a man on a mission.