Friday, April 29, 2005

i. the narcissist. the two fishes.

i like the wind. i like thunderstorms. i also like the winter sun.

i like the sea. but i don't want to venture too deep. i like the ground beneath my feet.

i want to be free. but i also need to belong.

i like to sit by the window. i like to observe. but i also want to be noticed.

i am rebellious. yet i can be painfully traditional at times.

i want to change the world. but i don't want to get my hands dirty doing it.

i am an idealist. yet i can see both sides of the coin.

i come across as extremely candid. but i'm actually quite gaurded.

i am scared of heights. but i take the tallest free-fall ride in the world and i sit by the window when i fly.

i like to be independent. yet i want to be taken care of.

i could be very unhappy. but you wouldn't know because i could laugh the most when i am unhappy.

i am honest. but i am also make-believe. i am an actress.

i am very resilient. very strong. but i am also very weak-willed.

i don't believe in religious restrictions and irrationalities. but i believe in destiny. i believe in astrology.

i am not moneywise. but i am forever concerned about financial security.

i like to be alone. i don't like loneliness.

i am like the two fishes of my sign. swimming in two opposite directions. trying to find what i am and some courage.

i. the narcissist. i am obsessed about evaluating myself. but i don't love myself. why can't i just say at the end there is just myself. because that is perhaps the reality.

i need to cling onto my relationships and i am scared to let go. why do i always feel like a kite with it's strings cut without my relationships to validate me. i should break free and swim upstream for a change.

but i know tomorrow i will be back to my security-seeking self. tomorrow i will feel torn apart by my freedom-seeking self.

i am forever trying to find the balance. and forever failing.

this was a sad little post. tomorrow will be a brighter day.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Happy B'day Baba

It was my dad's Birthday yesterday. He turned 63. Took this picture this time around in Delhi.

My dad like many other Indian dads was what one would define as protective and at some point defined by me as 'over'protective. I never had that 'friends' equation with baba like i have seen with many other girls. Ma was there for that. Baba was always baba, protective, conventional baba.

But he was also full of contradictions. He was a hit with my friends especially guys (and here I'm talking about guys who are just friends, not boyfriends - the equation changed with even a hint of romance anywhere). He was a hit because of his awesome sense of humour.

I also remember him as a tyrant where my studies were concerned. Well tyrant may be an exaggeration, but yeah he was forever worried about my career choice (which to his dissapointment wasn't a Doctor or an Engineer). He perhaps wanted his children to be these super-achievers but over the years has accepted me and my brother's choices in life. Exam time was crunch time. As much as i hated it, i had to go though this early-morning-studying ritual every day! He had a theory that your mind is fresh early in the morning. Mine was far from it! But in all fairness he was more punctual in the waking up ritual than i could ever be.

He is also the true-blue bengali while i was the rebellious cosmopolitan. So there was enough fodder for arguments and this tradition is being continued by my brother! :D The joke going around in my family is that baba looks for a Bengali restaurant while eating out!

I have inherited my love for music from my dad. He lives for music and is quite young at heart. One would assume from his age that he would have a slightly tame/mature taste in music. But no sir! On the contrary, he digs the remixes churned out and has quite a number of them stacked up on the dashboard of the car. He hates to drive without music. And like me he digs RD Burman, SD Burman, Salil Choudhuri. He is also a romantic at heart. It's a little embarrasing and a lot of fun when he serenades Ma on some romantic song played on TV and Ma clumsily shuffles her feet along with him...and then exasperratingly exclaims "ufff onek hoyeche! bas aar na...onek boyesh hoyeche!" [Translated: That's enough! No more...We are old now!] :P

Apart from music I hope I have inherited his flair for languages. He writes very well. And he can speak several languages. About 8 or 9 of them! Apart form English, Hindi, Bangla, he can speak fluent Telugu, Manipuri, Bhutanese. He can also speak Punjabi, smattering of Nepali and Bihari hindi.

We have had our share of terrible rows.

An instance: He was what one would call, a chain-smoker. He could smoke 3-packs of cigarettes each day...that was normal. There were warnings from the doc which didn't help, neither did my mother's constant nagging. So I decided to take matters in my hands. Gave him an ultimatum that if he doesn't curb his smoking frequency he will be guilty of making me start smoking.I thought I had tamed him untill he said - Okay go ahead, I dont mind!! I was furious and appalled by the reaction and to prove my point took a cigarette from him and lighted it and took my first puff...and well I hated it!! I hated the taste of smoke and heat inside my mouth and throat! I failed to understand how he could smoke so much. Later, on being confronted by my mother as to how he could encourage his children to smoke, he said he knew I would hate it, so why bother and jeoparadise his smoking scene!! My brother doesn't smoke. I don't think my dad would mind if he did!

Despite all this he cried the most when I got married. And he is one of those rare men who cry watching movies.

Our relationship has gone through it's share of highs and lows. But I'm glad that my parents have each other at this point. My dad makes sure that Ma recieves a Bouquet first thing in the morning every b'day and Ma reciprocates the same way. They go and watch the latest bollywood movie to hit the town together. Ma makes sure that she cooks the fish just the way baba likes it. With just the right flavour and taste to it and scolds him if he slyly ventures to add a little extra salt. Somehow it's reassuring to see both of them sticking it out despite all odds after 30 years of stepping into each others lives. It's reassuring in a world full of incompatibilies, over-analysing of relationships. Perhaps it was easier for them to take it as it is and make it work regardless of anything else. And I'm glad that they did.

And I'm glad that I have them as parents, even if tomorrow I have to shout at them long distance over something that I don't agree with them on. :-)

I should end this post with my Ma's picture. She has lovely green eyes. Besides I'm a tad sentimental today and can't think of Ma and Baba separate.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Take a joyride with Bunty Aur Bubli

Bunty Aur Bubli rocks! Trust Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy to come up with yet another great piece of work. The flavour of this album is undoubtedly local. UP to be precise. My favourites are 'Dhadak Dhadak', 'Bunty Aur Bubli', 'B n B' and 'Kajra Re'.

BnB is westernised...its as one would say very 'catchy'. :D

Dhadak Dhadak, Bunty Aur Bubli are very hindustani, very UP. You can visualise the lanes-bylanes of Uttar Pradesh, pan-chewing men, women in their seedha-pallu saris or salwaar-kameez, busy railway platforms, small boys with kulher-chai.

Kajra Re is an awesome qawaali. Reminds me of the qawaalis of the 60s and 70s. RD's qawaalis. Saucy, naughty, sadak-chaap but still very very likeable. Never expected Alisha Chinoy to sing a qawaali! It's one of those songs when your head moves, fingers tap and you end up muttering a 'wah wah'! :D
I haven't watched the promos, but i reckon this one features Ash, AB and Abhishek....can't wait!

Chup Chup Ke is very melodious and romantic but a little tame and predictable in comparison to the above mentioned ones. There's also the mandatory Punjabi number - Nach Baliye, which i didn't warm up to.

I got a very RD feeling from these songs [especially the above-mentioned ones]. RD had composed some awesome hindustani, street-smart songs, capturing the essence of the local culture of UP-Bihar belt.

I think my dad will love these songs :D

Listen to the songs here:

Joe loves Connie and Yuki is lonely

I took these pictures a few days back at Stanley beach. Stanley has these rock formations that run into the sea. Its beautiful, the waves crashing-on the rocks but never too wild. It's a lot of fun, jumping from one formation to the other and somehow managing to reach the tallest/highest one, and for a second feel triumphant! :-)

Most of these rocks have all kinds of scribbles, grafittis painted on them. Reminded me of a particular menace historical sites in india have to face. Lovers of the world leave their autographs, testimonials of their love on these historical monuments. 'Neeraj loves twinkle', 'Ravi - the ever applicable heart symbol - Renu', 'Bunty loves Bubli' - oops!! I'm listening to Bunty Aur Bubli songs as I write! :P

It also reminds me of the bollywood movies of the 80s. It's the woods. The hero and heroine running through the woods, singing-dancing. Hero scribbles something on the tree-trunk. Looks at the heroine with a 'look' in his eyes, heroine looks at his artwork - zoom onto the tree trunk....and yeah it's there...the hero's heart carved out nicely and precisely!!

Okay I should shutup now :-)

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

How many stories do you hide behind those lines

A picture taken by me at Dilli-Haat this January. I chatted up with this man selling musical intruments. It is indeed amazing how people respond to just a little bit of kindness and willingness to listen. He ended up telling me where he was from, what he did for a living, how long he has been a musician and how difficult life is.

Often times when I look at the elderly, the slouching shoulders, the slow shuffling gait, the clouded eyes, the wrinkles, I wonder how many stories hide behind those sinewy lines that crawl through their skin over the years. Its' as if you can trace back history running your fingers through these lines.

How much history, pain, laughter, romance, sacrifice, anger, passion, regret hides behind. How many of these stories are told and how many die with them. How different did they look when the skin was taut, when the feet were sprightly. It's amazing how even viciousness either fades away or is overlooked in the elderly.I feel like digging deep into their lives and know what it was like to be born at the time they were born. What was it like to live through an era which was so different from this one. I want to dig deep and soak-in all the water buried beneath.

Often times I have wondered if I will even live long enough for anyone to dig deep into my stories. Which of the stories will I be willing to reveal, the heroic/strong ones or the ones that are humbled by failures. Im not sure I want that long that is. I'm scared of too long a life.


"Didi". I wish my own grandparents were living at this point when I have started taking an interest in photography. I would have loved to photograph them.

Saturday, April 9, 2005

Musicology I borrowed the title from Robbie Williams 'Escapology', or on a more politically correct note - I was inspired! I do read a lot of interviews given by our bollywood music directors you see. Besides I am a big Robbie Williams fan.

But let me not digress from the intent of this post...

Music to me is my life blood. Something that I need everyday. Every freaking day!! If I were to take away that part of me which thrives on music, I will be a dead soul. It's part of my very being and thankfully I am not averse to variety. Language has never been a detterent.

I used to sing. Used to. Past tense. A friend of mine who was/is a very good singer himself and played the guitar very well was my singing partner and we had some very good musical sessions together. But that is all in the past. A few days back, owing to one of those whimsical moments, I tried recording a song - in my voice. While I was recording, I thought wow this sounds good! That was perhaps because I had my headphones on with the audio of the music that I was singing, playing loud. Needless to say, it was a different story when I playbacked my recorded song. I couldn't bear listening to it! And I was sad, sad that I have managed to loose a gift I was born with. But perhaps I havent lost it all. Yet.

It's quite sad that music being so much a part of my life, I never had any formal training. I can't read musical notes neither can I play any musical instrument.I would like to change that though - hopefully soon enough.


Some of the songs I'm currently digging (All thanks to Launch Cast Music!):

Top of the list is -

Blower's Daughter - Damien Rice

When I listened to this song, I thought now here is this person who can sing while he speaks. It's a beautiful song and beautifully picturised. The raging sea, the flowing curls, you can feel the attraction between the actors, the pull, the tension between them. The words and anguish in the voice touches your's just beautiful. (this song features in the movie - Closer)

Take a look at the video here -

Now the rest:

The Remedy (I wont worry) - Jason Mraz

Give a Little bit - GooGooDolls
Lonely no more - Rob Thomas
Dakota - Stereophonics
I dont want to be - Gavin DeGraw
Falls On Me - Fuel
Wherever You will go - The Calling
God Put A Smile - Coldplay
Calling All Angels - Train
Best I ever Had - Vetical Horizon
Somewhere only we know - Keane
Bitter Sweet Symphony - The Verve
Heaven - Los Lonely Boys
Bright Lights - Matchbox Twenty
These Words - Natasha Bedingfield
24 - Jem

Friday, April 1, 2005

There i go again - the curious me!

Now i am not the one to pry into others lives. But i do indulge in a little bit of curiosity once in a while [I am an avid reader of all agony-aunt columns one can come get the drift?!].

I was browsing through one of those free magazines that one gets in cafes. I like browsing through them...some of them are well designed and are interesting reads as well. I also intended to take a look at the classifieds where one might come across good design job-opportunities. i was browsing through, i came across 'The Personals' and as usual my curiosity-meter went up a notch...and i HAD to look at each and every one of them!

Women wanting Men

Men wanting Women
Men wanting Men
Women wanting Women
Just Friends

Following are some of the more interesting ones i came across. Enjoy! :-)

Always dreaming about how it feels to get close to woman physically.
Can you give me chance? Me:34/170/61; U:non-fat; non-smoking.

Do you want to recover from a broken relationship?
A curing pill is in front of you!

Male, 24, Chinese looking for Chinese women aged 28-49 for
short-term relationship. Lets have fun together!

Cute French Master is looking for his slave. You want to be dominated...
Let me be your guide..Let you live your dream.

International.Hollywood. Delightful, charming feminine lady will make
your evening pleasent & enjoyable. Relaxing and totally rewarding.
Domination special equipment.

This one was well written i thought:
Needle in a haystack. An attractive Chinese professional in his mid 30s
is turning to the personals in the odd chance that an equally cultured
Western bloke (>35 years old) might be reading this advert.

And now the best one!
Sexy Angel Pure Asian virgin, HK seeking expatriate for development.
I am good nature, sincere. Need ABC or Western guy for my first time.