Thursday, December 30, 2004


The Sun was bright, and the sands were warm,
The beach was just as resplendent, in its beauty and charm,
People on morning walks were in their lazy gaiety,
Admiring the vast ocean, majestic and mighty,
Fishermen were on their daily chores,
Rowing their boats far away from the shores,
An unusual calm in the morning sea, what a quiet day it seemed,
Couldnt be any closer, to the perfect day that they had dreamed.

Until the sea took offence, and banded an army of evil tides,
Set them on human trails, to push them on their final rides,
In a secret vendetta against the human race,
The ocean showed its ugly face,
Washing away thousands of innocent lives, causing incurable pain,
And yet be unapologetic in its splendour, threatening to revolt again,
The evil collusion of the monsters inside the earth and sea,
Spewing venom at life, through a huge ravaging tsunami.

A lesson for the humankind, through bodies that were never found,
When nature takes an ugly turn, civilizations have been razed to the ground,
In a war between man and nature, the loser will always be left to rue,
It is the law of nature to "Do unto man what man does to you".

A Cupboard full of Skeletons

In periods of peace, when everything seems mundane,
My trepidations loom large, thoughts I cannot contain;
These that disturb my calm, have long been my friends,
Burdening my mind with guilt, but never giving me a chance to make amends;
Breathing life into an uncomfortable past,
One that cannot coexist with a beautiful present,
Like creatures with ugly heads, that threaten to enter my heaven,
Those that should not be fought, but should only be buried,
Thoughts that never leave me, fears that keep me worried.

Life gives a second chance, but past does not;
New memories will never condemn the old ghosts to rot;
Those skeletons in the cupboard cannot be put away,
For they will certainly return to haunt another day,
Robs every chance of a guiltless future,
Kills with insufferable torment,
Dashing every small joy, those ugly creatures that never relent;
Till the day when there is no beautiful present, consumed by an everlasting past,
The day when life gives way, and deliverance comes atlast.

* Another Personal Expression. Not a personal experience.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

The Tsunami disaster: A prayer for the deceased

It really must be the beginning of the end!
When nature turns against humanity in a way as cruel as this, humankind are left to wonder, and even more so, to mourn. The magnitude of this tragedy, for us outsiders, is measured only in the number of deaths reported. But to those who have lost their families and homes, the tsunami has left them with an abysmal pit of irreplaceable loss. Unsuspecting people have been washed away to watery graves in a matter of minutes. Thousands of fishermen have lost their lives, and their livelihood. Homes have been destroyed. Villages have been razed. Survivors face the risk of epidemics due to water contamination caused by the dead bodies. Panic has given way to anarchy.
Nothing has remained the way it was. The way it should have been.
In this hour of grief, us lucky ones can only pray for the souls of the departed, and do our best to help save the survivors. By donating clothes, medicines, food, utensils, money. And by spreading the message of compassion. To let them know that "we care".
And pray that it never happens again.

Thursday, December 23, 2004

promotions and pitfalls

In times of disgust came a shimmer of light. And washed away all the discontentment, only to leave me with a new confussion as to which path I should tread on now. Till this good news came along, I had come to terms with the fact that my career had reached a standstill, and therefore, I had to innovate to set it back on track again. On a new ground. But now, after this huge leap, I am not sure if I have the will to tread new grounds. When the current one seems to be getting good, why expend energy looking for new ones. But again, If I dont explore outside, I may be missing out on things much bigger than what I have received now. But after such a long period of discontentment, even a small ray of light can light up one's eyes like a million bulbs. For now, I am contented. And confused.
Is this really a promotion? Or just another pitfall? Am i being made to bite some cheap bait? Should I sing my urge to explore to sleep ? Should I celebrate and succumb ? Or should I explore and rediscover my career?

Monday, December 13, 2004

Blast from the past

This past Sunday, as I was sulking in my boredom, I couldnt help trace back to my childhood days, when every holiday was an event. When weekends meant cricket matches, pranks, fighting with my brother, breaking things, some more fighting with my bro etc. I was this fresh faced, innocent little kid that was exceptionally good at almost everything that kids his age were expected to revel in. Like Cricket, scoring marks in tests, athletics, putting on a good behaviour in front of guests, and always being truthful. This last quality that i mentioned didnt augur quite that well with my bullying brother. Everytime he broke a vase, or everytime he helped himself to some cashews stolen from my Mom's treasured collection, my innate need to be truthful would always put him in trouble. And in most cases, pain. Here are some of my treasured memories from my younger years:

1)I was about 7 years old when my brother invented a new game. He was a maverick who always wanted to come out with something novel. And in this case, it was a new game. And the game went something like this. I would be the thief and he would be the cop. However, this was a cop-thief game with a twist. The cop would be armed with a huge brick that he could feel free to hurl at the thief. And ofcourse, my brother was bored of being the thief in all those "mystery of the missing cashews" stories. So he always chose to be the cop in this game. And since I was such a nice kid, I didnt mind being a thief if it meant my brother would get to be a cop. Atleast for once, he would get to be on the right side of the law. And so this game would begin. And sooner than I would realise, my cop-bro would get completely immersed in his role, and naturally, that would mean bricks flying at me. Although I was kinda tiny, I was not tom thumb. And therefore, I wasnt completely immune to the brick attacks. And at the end of the game, I always had a big bump on my head, or a huge wound on my leg etc. And yeah, for all my valour, I would still be in tears at the end of the game. And my brother would be all pompous of how no thief could get past his honest cop avatar. I am so glad that he chose to be a marketing professional. If he had become a cop, I would pity the thieves that came his way. And if you find that hard to believe, I have so many scars on my legs to prove it.

2)This was about a few months after I figured out his brick trick, and started refusing to play the thief anymore. So we, that's bro and me, started playing cricket. It wasnt as wild as the brick-trick. But my bro had to compromise. And so began our tryst with the gentlmen's game. Very soon, bro and me were winning accolades for being the young turks. We were rather good at the game, and it wasnt too hard to notice that. My bro was really good at those nasty bouncers. And if there was anyone who could face up to his wild pace, it was me. And not just face it, but even smash it all over the park. This didnt really go well with my bro. And one fine day, after plotting for months, my bro finally got his chance to get back. We were playing a game of cricket in the ground in front of our house. And I happened to take a wicket off my bowling. And ofcourse, it called for celebrations. So i went about hi-fi'ing all the homies. And when I went to hi-fi my bro, he turned me around, and pulled my shorts down for everyone to have a full view of my naked rear. I was a rather sensitive kid. Especially when it came to nudity. And I ran away from the place, with tears rolling down my cheeks. The ones on my face, you perverts.

3)This was when I was in 3rd std. About 9 years old. My bro was the cricket captain in his class. And they had this prestigious final to play for the school shield. And they had one player less on the D-day. So my bro and his friends decided to play me. And since I was such a puny little kid, the opponents couldnt care less. As the match progressed, we had a handsome total to chase. My brother, the captain, perished rather early leaving the team reeling at a paltry total. When everything had seemed lost, I went in to bat. And I batted and batted. Till the target was just 6 runs away. There was just one wicket left. And my brother was doing the umpiring bit. The final over, and I hit the first ball straight over the bowler's head towards the boundary. Now, the boundary was a wall, that had gaps at several places, and my shot took the ball into once such gap in the wall. Although it crossed the imaginary boundary line, it rebounded against a huge rock and came back into the field. Now, in every other case, it would be declared a four. But not when my brother was umpiring and me batting. I had stopped in my stride seeing the ball cross the boundary. To my utter disgust, the fielder who retrieved the ball threw it back to the bowler who promptly clipped the bails since my brother had already announced "Not a four". And there i was stranded in the middle of the pitch, and cheated out of a victory by a jealous brother.It was sweet revenge that even the opponent team unanimously decided that I should be the Man of the Match. The prize, I still remember, was a notebook and a pen.

Too many memories, but too little time to pen them. More later.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

My best friend's wedding-part 2

A few months ago, I had blogged about the seemingly impossible task of finding a suitable bride for my super-eligible bum-chum Shankar. Seemingly impossible because Shankar had to find a girl who would meet the high expectations of all his well-wishers. And knowing Shankar to be the noble samaritan that he is, he certainly has a lot of well-wishers. And therefore, finding a girl who would be physically attractive yet demure, intellectually stimulating yet naive, academically brilliant yet not headstrong, professionally settled yet willing to give it all up if asked to, was a tall order. Add to this, the sense of urgency that he was forced to conduct his search under. And ofcourse, unrelenting work pressure which Shankar is innately incapable of rejecting. In such a boiler room situation, even the toughest nut would crack.
But not our man. Or did he?
Well, Shankar, after the minutest of deliberations, was almost impatient to say yes to the girl that we now know to be his fiancee. The impatience , I am guessing, was part due to the fear of professional vilification from a smitten female colleague, and part due to the irresistable charms of Miss Rashmi.
Sometimes, when the heart does the mind's job, impatience is the end result. And in decisions such as this, the heart certainly rules over the mind.
But one thing's for sure, Shankar certainly is on Cloud nine, and his feet barely reach terra firma these days. And why not! Rashmi is every bit the dream woman that Shankar wanted. Pretty, shy, culturally rooted, professionally on the rise, mature, understanding, and simple.
Now, if he had shown the same impatience in getting married to her, I wouldnt have had to wait another six months for an excuse to celebrate. At my best friend's wedding. Finally!

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Of Rebels and their shallow beliefs

In a world ruled by conventions, being a rebel is a true fashion statement. More for the fact that you are not one among the crowd than for the belief that you are cleansing the society of its ills.
That being my basic definition of a rebel, as one who aims to stand out rather than stand up for any cause, I got my golden opportunity to prove to the world how right I was. About rebels and their lost cause.
This man that I have grown up being in awe of, due to the tall tales of extraordinary will power and unwaivering determination in the face of all adversities that convention threw at him, was the one rebel that I knew would conclusively prove or disprove my thoughts about the narcissistic indulgences of these "rebels". And for his own sake, and for the sake of not wanting to have to put him down from the pedestal that I had elevated him to right from when I was a kid, I hoped I would be proven wrong. I hoped he would come out unscathed when I was done throwing my skewed arguments at him.
Alas! The mighty did fall, and HOW!
When all your arguments to counter his baseless accusations against society are conveniently sidestepped due to a want of a counter-argument,
When every fact that you produced to prove your point is countered with a stinging account of the number of books that he has read that you have'nt,
When this "rebel" takes refuge in his indulgence in redundant tomes to elevate himself from the position of defeat that he invariably finds himself countless number of times due to you being at your effervescent best,
When you discover that this "rebel" who hates the society for the ill-harboured conventions that it adheres to, is in reality, just a two-face who nurtures all those ills that he hates the society so much for harbouring (and which the society has long given up in the name of modernization),
You brand him a "FAKE", and hate yourself for having to do that.
Afterall, heroes are hard to come by, and when you add to the diminishing count by killing one, you cant help but hate yourself.
As a parting shot, I couldnt resist taking a dig at his being confined to the marxist literature that adorns his library rather than go out and see life the way it is. At his misconceptions about urban middle class conventions without ever making an attempt to mingle with it himself. At his allegations of the prevailing social injustice without ever being a part of the society. Couldnt stop myself from blabbering the obvious sobriquet-"FROG IN THE WELL". Yes. That's so true. It takes some courage to say that. And i pride myself for having that. It takes some courage to accept that. He turned out to be a coward on this count too.
And the stone I threw at the frog in the well managed to splash a lot of water. Its raining in Bangalore too. Everytime he calls home, it does. I am not surprised. It's so much like a "rebel without a cause". It's so much like him.