Aug 29, 2011

An entry from my ('clean' house) floor's diary

Yesterday, it was all but through layers that I could try and see the rest of the world. Layers and layers of dust had been gathering over my poor body and no one had bothered to help me overcome my eye's inability to see clearly. Normally, there's some random witch aka the 'bai' (Code word for the Bai The Way, I'm A Witch Association) who comes with her broom and removes the accumulated much once a day. She was dismissed from her services yesterday. All the books I've read always told me that witches are the villains but it is NOT true, I tell you! They are wonderful and so strong and brave. God bless the witches!

Today, one of my regular users decided to be the witch and remove the blackness off me. I had heard some talk about someone's mother arriving because of which, this once-in-a-blue moon ordeal had to be done. I did not understand why that meant that I'd be paid sudden attention to but either way, I was okay with that. I was actually beaming with pride aka shining aka sparkly white. That was until the everyday routine inevitably came into play-pizza crumbs thrown at me with vengeance, water droplets to make me feel colder than I already do and to top it off, a truck load of hair strands strewn about me as if to somehow decorate and enhance my short-lived former glory.

I learnt something today: It is better not to expect much kindness from the owner who pays a fairly huge sum of Rs 15,000 a month to tread on you. Also, the floor is always cleaner on the other side.

Oh, I almost forgot, I made up a new poem today on my pitiable life:
Shoes may come, Shoes may go, But the unwashed clothes pile that rests on me, Is definitely here to stay.

Aug 22, 2011

The beauty of words

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms, and, if it proved to be mean, why then to get the whole and genuine meanness of it, and publish its meanness to the world; or if it were sublime, to know it by experience, and be able to give a true account of it in my next excursion."

— Henry David Thoreau

Aug 20, 2011

A Man She Knew

There are different ways to find one’s true self – sitting on the top of a hill contemplating your life, doing something you find a passion in or just when you reach that comfort zone with someone where you know that there is no pretence. If there is someone with whom you have had that sort of intimacy, it is rare and ought to be preserved.

They shared that. They were friends and knew each other pretty darn well. She’d scare him by predicting what he was about to say. He would name her ‘Psy-Ro’ for a crazy like that which he did not realize was predictable because of his very attribute of being a typical guy. He’d want to marry her because she knew the name of the rides in his favourite childhood computer game. She’d want to text him because she saw idiotic kids falling down while trying, very, trying, hard, trying, to, trying, rollerblade. ‘Trying’ being the key word in the previous sentence, the attempts were ‘epic fails’, as the kids these days like to refer to it as.

But they enjoyed talking, be it on the occasional phone call while walking home because you’re bunking college, over texts throughout the day (mostly from class), or chatting online on Skype because Facebook had too many people who were dying to talk to the charming ‘boy’ in this friendship. The conversations never seemed to run dry, someone was often called a ‘cartoon’ because of her weird antics, and food talk always seemed to please both parties. It was a nice kind of friendship between these two ‘almost strangers’. They had known of each others’ existence and had even met once in the past and been in the same space on another ‘once’. But they had never really spoken to each other. When they finally did, Subway talk sealed the bond. When the two met, there was another story to tell...

There were cheesy memories created. Smoke and colors passed in the wind. Music was in the air. There was even artificial rain. But he did not ask her to dance, for he knew she had two left feet. She watched him though, dancing away, hardly recognizable. It was a face, a phase she knew she wouldn't get over. There were silences that followed, owing to penguins on the road that he had to go meet. King Penguins at that! But she kept writing to him, telling him about her days, monotonous as they may be. It was nice how the two had to talk every night, regardless of circumstances that may hamper that normalcy in their lives. She went away for a while. So did he. But the communication never stopped.

And soon, she was back in his life in person. He picked her up, almost from the airport, and showed him places she had not seen despite being in the city for long enough. When she was low and having the worst day of her life, he showed up and tried to take her out for dinner. They did go for the dinner but she didn't allow him to pay for her. Why? Gender equality and to not let him be a chauvinistic pig, of course. He had much to learn from her, you see. Not like she didn't from him. It worked both ways. He cheered her up that night over delicious pasta by reminding her of her problem in a really messed up funny way. It worked, somehow, to her surprise. She actually smiled! He did get a kick in the ass after that but that was bound to happen. They met once again before he went away again. It was at a music concert that she had been aching to go for. She told him the songs she loved and the ones that she didn't as much. He paid careful attention despite the slices of pizza that tempted him as he listened. At the end of the concert, he hugged her and left. 

She missed him. But she knew he'd come back. Soon, apparently. He could have surprised her and not told her the dates of his return. But then, how would his very deflated ego boost up without her constantly telling him to 'come soon?' She would love it if he just showed up near her house and called her down to surprise her...Just saying. :)
7 months of knowing each other and actually talking almost everyday. Forever friends? (Lame ending was expected!)

My Interview on BookChums

Here's a short excerpt from my interview taken by after 'Down The Road' came out. It felt strange answering it but it's funny, in retrospect:

How was the experience editing Down The Road? How were the drafts you received? What did you look for while compiling the collection?
To say the least, it was a very exciting and new experience for me to edit Down The Road. I wasn’t really sure how difficult it would be but just took the plunge when Ahmed asked me to co-edit it with him.

Some of the drafts I received had little or no errors, while others required a little more working on. It worked on a feedback mechanism, where I would track the changes as I edited and would send it to the author. After he/she went through it and agreed to those changes or didn’t, it would be sent back to me and then the re-editing would start and this process would continue until the final copy was ready.

I did not select the stories in the collection and hence, the question of compiling the collection doesn’t arise.

Read the full interview here.
(P.S.It's a really bad photograph used!)

That familiar scent always lingers

That familiar scent always lingers,
Reminding you of that wonderful night,
Of the love you felt,
Of the warmth so close.

That familiar scent always lingers,
It makes you see those faces gone,
Of death, of never returning,
To the world you claim to know.

That familiar scent always lingers,
Of your mother's hand cooked food,
Of the fond memories of home it brings
As you sit far away in another city.

That familiar scent always lingers,
Of the Diwali patakas burning,
Of the earth before it rains,
Of the Hajmola caused farts.

The odd thing about that scent,
Is that it always is the same.

My silent shadow

There are those times in the night
When I am afraid to walk alone,
To walk that long stretch under the streetlights
To my house at the corner of the road.

My lone house to the corner right,
Would take too many steps to reach.
But then I realize I have a friend, 
My stalker, my best company.

My shadow is my only friend,
Sometimes she's tall, sometimes short,
But on those rainy blurry nights,
Her haziness never does appall.

She is beautiful, much more than I
Could ever dream to be.
She wanders creepily behind,
But only seems to put me at ease.

I know her well, she really hears me out,
Despite the occasional silences.
Those silences are truly missed,
When in the dark, she vanishes.

Aug 17, 2011

The missing spark

If you want me
Let me know
Where do you want to go.
No need for talking
I already know.
-The XX (Stars)

He'd been in her life for too long a time. On and off, never always there. You know the kind. Actually, you'd never know with this one-he was mad, alive, untouched by rain or snow. A model of a do-what-he-wants kind of man. And quite a man at that!

She had asked him to be there too many a time and for once, he did. And when he finally did, he made her repent not having pushed him to come earlier. The initial warm but too shortlived hug was shared. And before they knew it, they lay close to each other watching a movie. That movie changed everything. When it started, when it ended, they knew not. But they did know that that movie had changed everything.

And for once, he could do what he wanted but could not. And that made him angry. It brought out his inner self. It made him feel vulnerable. And that intimidated her and brought out her inner side, her inner vices. Exposed to him, it seemed to find itself a partner, a vent, a shadow. And never a better hand to hold had she found.

In her exposed state, she found comfort, she found a soothing sense of vulnerability that would not give in to anything but what felt right at that moment. Inside her, she felt something spark!