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November 13, 2008

Posted by K in Uncategorized.

Children grow up to lose their childhood; that is the
pattern, yes? But that’s not really true, is it? We grow up to find our
childhood, we live as children of the adult world. Our sorrows and worries,
they come and go, but while we live in them, we think they are so big, don’t we?
Just like as children, an argument would seem like the end of happy life, only
to be forgotten the next day, as playtime approached again. Forgiving becomes
harder in the second childhood. Or maybe I mean forgetting.

Nothing really matters. But paradoxically, everything does.
Passing that exam, washing those clothes, satisfying that craving for food. And
if ignored, we realise that we could go without just as easily.

I’m glad I’m alive. I don’t know what I’m doing here, I don’t
have answers. I’m looking. And every now and then, when banality enters my
life, I realise the perfect answer is available.


‘E flicked his nose and blew a raspberry.

(I was going to make these into three separate posts, but
unfortunately, my internet connection is indirectly suggesting I shrink it to
one. My connection has been really slow for the past two days…I’m wondering
if I’ve picked up an ugly.)

I’ve been back in Delhi since November 24. I’ve been to the
library-once. I have met a friend-once. I have met another friend-twice
(principally because she lives closer to home). The rest of the time I’ve just
sat at home doing- nothing. Ok, so I stay up nights downloading and watching
Season 5 of Grey’s Anatomy. I’ve watched most of the movies I had collected on
my laptop. I’ve read the books I borrowed from the library (Ice-Candy Man-nice.
Agatha Christie x 3-cute.)

Why is it that most (all?) hoardings depicting women have so
much cleavage on display? I mean, yes, secret project objectify and all that,
but in our context (read-‘Indian’) that is so far removed from reality. Is that
why ‘Indian’ men have such a problem with the female body? Quite a disconnect-
hoardings suggesting an image that doesn’t find confirmation on the streets.

That bit in Ice-Candy Man where the ice-candy man suggests
to his Sikh friend that he can get rid of his tenants by arranging a mass
flashing of genitals at the women. I found that very disturbing. Why should the
sight of a penis offend someone? How can it be used to insult the watcher? And
I was even more disturbed to realise that I would be distressed if I were
flashed like that. Not because my eyes are delicate-but because of the
assumption that one gender can exert its sexual power on me by the mere
suggestion of violation.



1. anonymouse - November 15, 2008

You have been in Delhi since November 24. Do you live in a Counter Clock world?

2. sporadicblogger - November 17, 2008

anonymouse- Oops 😛

3. Jon Norland - December 25, 2008

This whole business of growing up and losing our childhood. Does it really happen to anyone, short of developing full-blown amnesia?

You are 21. I am 59. We’ve exchanged comments online for 3 years or so and I’ve never noticed that I’ve distanced myself from my childhood noticeably farther than you have.

I’m sitting at my desk and over to the left are pillows I sat on when I was 8 years old. On a shelf to my right is a monkey made from a sock by my grandmother. It is as old as my oldest memories. I slept with it when I was 3 years old. Now I sleep with my dog.

If age has granted me any wisdom it is only by virtue of having had a lot more experiences which have turned out well or badly, so I have a bigger database to draw from when looking for the right or the wrong thing to do.

And that’s not always a good think. It makes me lazy. Too often I don’t bother to try to figure out new answers.

But I’m no smarter than I was when I was 21. I certainly don’t think as quickly. I’m not as creative. I used to be a bubbling cauldron of ideas. I had to be young just to try to keep up with everything that came pouring out of my head and my heart.

How did I ever maintain my focus with all of those ideas cascading forth amid a simultaneous onslaught of hormones that drove me careening from girl to girl like a big steel ball in a pinball machine?

“I’m glad I’m alive. I don’t know what I’m doing here, I don’t
have answers. I’m looking. And every now and then, when banality enters my life, I realise the perfect answer is available.”

I could have written those same words this morning or 40 years ago.


4. sporadicblogger - December 25, 2008

Jon Norland- You seem to be saying the same thing as I am. We don’t lose our childhood, we just come to realise what it means once we are out of it. A kid of five doesn’t understand the meaning of childhood, for him/her, it’s just the way things are, and cannot be any different. As an adult I know things can be different, and the pool of experience gives me the many options to every situation, or practically every one.

Holding on to articles of childhood doesn’t mean that you get back your ‘childhood’. I just remember the feelings and emotions that my ‘cricket license’, for instance, evoked in me when I created it at the age of 12 or 13. There is no way I would choose to do something as silly and pointless as that now. I knew it was silly and pointless then as well, but it hadn’t really stopped me from making it or having fun with it back then. And by that (‘childhood’)I mean, while I might still react like a ‘child’ in many situations, I do not always have the same innocent enthusiasm or curiosity. The element of been there, done that makes me feel jaded at times.

And as for the line you quote- I don’t think I would have written that before now. 🙂

5. Jon Norland - December 25, 2008

I was thinking of all the ways in which I have not changed since I was a child, but you are right, there are parts of childhood that we lose somehow – the sense of wonder or newness in what we encounter.

That’s related to the drawback I mentioned to having lots of experiences making me lazy. I already know the answer, or one good enough, so I don’t look at things as closely.

Lots of spiritual leaders have emphasized the importance of seeing the world as a child, looking at everything as though seeing it for the first time, every time. That’s what we tend to lose, and we have to work at it, even develop spiritual practices, in order to recapture it.

“To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour.”

William Blake

6. Jon Norland - December 26, 2008

addendum – You said that I seem to be saying the same thing as you. I forgot to say that is correct. I get lost in what I’m saying sometimes and it’s not clear whether I’m amplifying, clarifying, agreeing or disagreeing with someone. Heck, sometimes it’s all of the above:)

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