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September 22, 2008

Posted by K in Uncategorized.
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And away with the blueness. Back to yellow it will be.

September 22, 2008

Posted by K in Uncategorized.

Apologies for the lack of updates. Thanks, yaamyn, for the reminder 🙂 Not that I needed reminding. I AM a sporadicblogger…that is precisely why I’m sporadicblogger 🙂

The weeks have been pretty packed. My Grandfather passed away a few days back. Dealing with it was harder than I thought it would be. This was the first time I have faced death, literally and metaphorically.

I’ve been working as well. In a different way. I’ve decided it’s to hell with all the compulsory bullshit. If I read what I’m interested in, and focus my energies on what I’m interested in, then the hours spent in sopoforic nothingness will significantly reduce. Ofcourse, it’s helped that I’ve had a few good books to keep me company.

I’ve dissed Amitav Ghosh’s Shadow Lines before. Probably for the wrong reasons. I know it’s brilliantly constructed and that is where my problem lay. With it, I mean. After the second read I found it too damn… constructed. So I never picked up another book of his. The last time I went home, I found my brother’s copy of Hungry Tide. He liked it, he said, so I brought it back with me. That, and Erich Segal’s The Class. I couldn’t put down either. Erich Segal was different from what I had expected him to be. There were cliches a plenty in the book, but I would recommend it simply for the way it makes you feel about university education. For a brief moment, I considered applying for another degree after my post-grad. Actually, I’m still living in that brief, for such it will be, moment. 🙂

The Hungry Tide was awesome. (Yup, awesome. I know words like ‘yum’ and ‘awesome’ irritate the englishness of some people, but what to do. I’m an un-englished sporadicblogger. I delight in cliches and airy phrases.) I found myself yearning to know more about the Sundarbans and river dolphins. The distant echo of familiarity sucked me right in. I have heard stories about the Sundarbans from my grandparents and other relatives. The stories generally hinged on the Royal Bengal T. It was like revisiting that part of the old, with the book, except it was not a revisit, ofcourse.

I do have to admit, the romantic pairings exposed my, now, evident middle-class prejudices. I found it hard to comprehend the chemistry. So much for me and my 🙂

As long as I’m talking about stuff I’ve read (you’ll have to pardon me. This is a boring post, but nothing remotely scintillating comes to mind as of now.), I finally deigned to suffer the tiny book excerpts that Outlook has been occassionally dropping in with the main magazine. I couldn’t find the Arundhati Roy extract, but I read the one from the Sea of Poppies (another Amitav ghosh book that I’ll now be reading.), three short stories from Khushwant Singh (the man is a perv. He is a brilliant writer, but I don’t care for his sensibility. Or atleast, that part of his sensibility. Which basically means I will not be reading much Khushwant Singh.), the Bond sequel by Sebastian Faulk (spelling?). I’ve never much been a fan of the Bond books or the movies, so it was hardly surprising that I didn’t like the sequel either. I can think of better ways to get bored.(That would not be a slight to the author; anything but.)

Murakami. I’ve been hearing that man’s name since my second year. I even blabbered his name to the principal of my ex-college while trying to explain the topic of our seminar, while trying to justify the need for a full-fledged fest. The first time I read him was now. My cousin gave me Dance, Dance, Dance for my 21st birthday, and I opened it with great expectations. Unfortunately, I think I’m not the Murakami type. It would have been nice to feel the magic. Maybe I ought to try more before forming an opinion. Maybe I need to finish the book.

I’ve also been reading more non-fiction these days. One excellent book I picked up recently is called The Violence of Normal Times; Essays on Women’s Lived Realities, edited by Kalpana Kannabiran. It has a collection of brilliant essays, written in a manner that makes you want to keep reading. The topic it deals with, violence and women, is a very common one. Anybody and everybody writes about it. But this, is something else. So far I’ve only read two essays- one on women as witches in the adivasi community, and how the creation of witches can be used to explain the creation of gender divide, and the other one on the treatment of rape in court. The ‘medicalisation of consent’; brilliant piece, horribly disturbing.

I have been google imaging quite frequently these days. Trawling for awesomness that gets saved in my ‘art’ folder. Some of the paintings/art work I’m in love with are by George Grie, Magritte, and other surrealist-type artists. And, ofcourse, Dali. I love his work, except I find the nudes and the grotesque’d body paintings too disturbing. I generally do not like the human anatomy celebrated on paper(or canvas, or whatever). I like it better on film.

Black and white art photography (is that a tautology?) is also being collected.

And here the post abruptly endeth.

September 7, 2008

Posted by K in Uncategorized.

WordPress has swallowed up my blogroll! 😦 I am in the process of figuring out what happened to it.

It shall be back. Muahaha.

Dabbas, Alibaug, and blogposts. September 7, 2008

Posted by K in Uncategorized.
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I just came back from a trip to Alibag (the ‘u’ was just for style 😉 ) and I’m struggling to stop the words 🙂 From a drought to a flood (in my head, atleast…) and I’m lovin’ it 😉

Last Saturday, some of us from class sat around in the basketball court, well fed from a nearly canteen, talking about work. And obviously the topic strayed to things un-work and we came up with the bright idea of making a class trip of Alibag. Actually, it went like this: “I’ve heard Alibag is a nice place-” “We should go there some time-” “How about next saturday?” (Yep. With the dashes.)

So fifteen of us made the journey-but only six came back.

*Dramatic pause*

Tee hee. The rest pushed off early because they wanted to take the 4.15 ferry back to Mumbai. We, on the other hand, decided to chance the MSRTC.

Ah, the MSRTC. It is THE way to travel. The very act of entering one exposes you to potential damage, in multiple ways, multiple times. They are the triple D- dirty, dangerous dabbas-and I love them.

Indian buses come personalised. Every journeyman* considers it a bounden duty to leave behind a mark to commemorate the journey. And comes suitably equipped with multi-coloured sketch pens. Creative.

I have always had bad luck with crank calls. Neither have I ever been able to make a successful one, nor have I ever had the opportunity of giving any interesting replies. Some people, on the other hand, hit the jackpot. Imagine having an STD crank caller ask you where you are…and being able to say- in the middle of the sea, on a tonga. I mean, if I were the crank caller, I would hang up my boots. You can’t better that. Especially when it is the truth.

The sea, once, very famously parted for Moses. So what, right? The sea parts twice, daily, for all visitors to the Colaba Fort. (Obviously I’m taking some poetic liberties here. But hey, so were they.)

The Fort houses a small community of pujaris who maintain a temple on the the premises-the only structure still left standing-or made to remain standing-and the journey is unforgettable. When you’re on the horse drawn cart (which almost seems to double as a ferry!) and can see the sea ahead of you and behind you, it can be-quite unique. It is one of those things that ought to fill the pages of Things-To-Do-Before-One-Dies kind of books. Unless ofcourse I’m completely unaware of other such structures around. Ooh, quite close to the Colaba fort lie the-ruins?- of another fort which has a temple dedicated to Betaal- the king of ghosts, if I’m not mistaken. Now THAT I want to visit!!:D:D

Anyway, simply put, or rather, simbly put-the day was marrvellouz.

Random, uninformed wandering in the galis of a strange town.

Drinking a cola (after ages, and as an exception. I’m still off those things) and watching lawyers at a nearby courthouse. Dressed in black suits in the scorching heat, while I was in shorts. (Poor things. Can’t they rebel against the ridiculous and asinine dress code??)

Splicing open various parts of my feet and hand on underwater rocks( Ok, I just wanted to use the word 😛 But yeah, those underwater rocks can be mean! I have a few nasty-ish cuts on the sole of my foot and on a finger.) in a bid to see a crab (which scuttled away and remained unseen).

Getting a real glimpse of underwater life for the first time. Tiny shells…with creatures in them. Tiny holes, and pretty patterns on the beach. Made presumably by baby crabs?

Watching a moth explode out of the head of the person sitting in front of me. (Allow me the dramatic inaccuracies.) And feeling like a King because I pretended that the man had a thought which the moth caught and flew away with(it sounds better in hindi). I haven’t had an idiotic thought like that in quite a while now- so I know I haven’t completely lost It.

Feeling the beginnings of a blogpost(I can stretch the term a little…) in my head and getting all pukey because of typing it out on the cell, on a moving MSRTC DDD.

Reaching home, tired and dirty, tentatively hoping to have turned a corner. In life, and otherwise.

I love Alibaug 🙂

*used gender-neutrally,

OpenOffice September 3, 2008

Posted by K in Uncategorized.

A recent Java update told me I could download something called OpenOffice. So I did. It seems to be an alternative to MS Office, and it’s completely free. Which makes me wonder…why on earth would anyone spend a bomb when OpenOffice is accessible to everyone?

September 1, 2008

Posted by K in Uncategorized.

Nope, the blog it no dead be. Not quite yet, padre B-) I contemplate killing it every now and then, but the flesh is weak.

Mumbai is growing on me. It’s those visits to South Bombay… you just can’t be indifferent to VT and Colaba and Bagdadi 😀

I love the buses here. I had intended to do a whole post on the lovelies, but just never got around to it.

Mumbai trains…I like them. They are useful. But I would CRY if I had to use them everyday, and in rush hour traffic!

Mumbai rains…I’m glad they’re gone. Bombay has a horrible fungus problem. I have never ranted as much about anything in my life! You put in freshly laundered, DRY, clothes, only to have them come out green and stinky a day and a half later!! EVERYTHING catches fungus…EVERYTHING!

It’s funny about the rains. Not funny, just interesting. I was in Delhi from the 13th of August to the 17th, and this was a period when it was raining heavily in both Mumbai and Delhi. Mumbai is used to this kind of deluge, but Delhi isn’t. The streets of Bombay are full of people going about with their lives as if the rain wasn’t even there. People wear their ‘nice’ clothes and shoes and go about life. The expressions on their face say it all-they don’t even seem to notice the rain. It is so different in Delhi! I was on a bus, on my way to my ex-college, on a day when Delhi had Mumbai-like rains. For the entire stretch of the journey I watched the people on the streets, and everybody had bemused expressions on their faces. Some were even laughing as they were caught in the rain-nobody carries an umbrella on their person in Delhi 🙂

Since I’m doing a ramble, let me talk about my Pune visit. I love Pune!:D:D:D:D One of my friends was to be in Pune for a few days so I decided to go visit. Maybe it was because I was meeting her, or maybe it was Pune, but the place rocks!(er.)  The streets are quaint, Hanuman Temples and street corners play DJ mujik, and it’s so tiny! The place is full of students and MG Road is obviously a place I want to return to 🙂 Pune also has the nicest Biryani I have ever eaten, in a lovely little place called the Blue Nile. I know Pune is not all sun and shine, I have heard about the intolerance and orthodoxy of certain parts, but as an outsider, I do not have to have the misfortune of being aquainted with it 🙂

I am an outsider. I do not feel a part of Mumbai, or even Pune, as I do in Delhi. Delhi is home. Or atleast, it is close to being home. I am less self-conscious when I am back there. I know Delhi, with its cracks and faults and stuff. (stuff? Er, again.)

Living out of home has led me to discover a certain aspect of my self. I am minorly OCD’d. I can’t stand seeing bottles with their caps off; or dirty dishes in the sink. If I have something I want to tell somebody, I can’t concentrate on anything until I have actually verballated (nope, it’s not a word), even if there are more pressing matters on hand. Hee.

I can’t believe I can’t write these days. I just can’t. It is as if my mind has shut out that possibility. It doesn’t feel it can create…anything. Which is why I shall blog only when the writer-ish thing happens again. I didn’t have much fun doing this post. I thought I would, but I didn’t 🙂