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Showing posts from December, 2009

Heart like a wheel

Q 1: Why have I never written a New Year's eve post before ?

A: I was too busy bringing in the New Year to bother.

I did not mean to do a post on it this year, but it's another slow day at work (shocker!!), the Eng-SA test is over & Google Reader tells me stubbornly that no one is going to write anything today. So, well...

Q 2: How was I going to go about it ?

A: The easy approach would have been to write a short description of 31st Dec 07 & 08 & compare them to 2009. Whoop-de-do & all, but it would have been a futile exercise. Or rather, pointless because I gain nothing from it & you, the kindly suffering reader, would have muttered darkly about unnecessary revisions & heaven forbid, redundancy.

Instead, I went back to the posts I wrote this year for ideas. Now, just to keep you lot from falling asleep, I've conjured a set of visuals to explain the whole deal. I am really bad at art, so if you don't like it or don't appreciate it, jog on.



That …

Age of innocence

Her untidy, muddy-brown tresses, the latest pixie rage, served to compliment the dusky hue of her skin. On anyone else, the turmeric-yellow top would have clashed with the skin; on her it seemed subjugated by some quiet confidence. The red calf-length skirt with plenty of mirror-work swished too & fro, the blue sandals demurely completing the ensemble. She was pretty; her eyes, nose & mouth conspiring to project a picture of childish wonder & amusement. Around her, the crowds swirled & ebbed but she looked steadily at one man.

At first glance, his clothes, shoes & weary demeanour shouted 'casual labourer'. Another look might just suggest something better... a low-pay clerk at a small, dusty office perhaps. The faded blue checked shirt, the grey trousers & scruffy black boots covered him with a familiarity that suggested they had been doing so forever. His hair, slicked back with the help of much oil, was black, yet white had begun to touch the roots. The…

Paper cuts

It was the first free-flowing laugh he'd heard in some time. Even without putting a mouth, a face or crinkly eyes to it, he was envious. And instantly amused at his envy. Had things reached such a nadir that he was jealous of a stranger's happiness ?

Shuffling through the quiet, familiar bylane, the suddenness of that rippling sound had startled him. He was contemplating his Osho's with some vexation as they were just 'that' annoying bit too big for his feet. Shoes never seemed to fit him well, a fact consistent with the rest of his clothing. His body gave the impression of having given up on growing as a thankless task, leaving him to struggle along in clothes that were too big or too small & shoes that were too tight or gave the impression of clown feet. The Osho's though admittedly comfortable, were no better & forced him to move like an arthritic tortoise contemplating it's life with dissatisfaction.

As a force of habit or perhaps to avoid the i…

Slim slow slider

At work, there is a large window behind & diagonal to where I sit. From my seat, turning slightly to the right I can see the fawn coloured guard tower of the American School of Bombay through this window.

I see the guard in his chair facing away from the setting sun. He is sitting in one of those simple black plastic chairs with stainless steel legs. The chair rests close to the metal pipes that pass for railings & his left arm lies extended on the first pipe.

The guard is gently rocking back & forth in his chair. Again & again. Just to break the rhythm, he tilts sideways. His hands now cradle his neck as he bends forward, allowing his spine to stretch. And he continues to roll gently, now being practically unaware of his own movement.

The view of the world from the tower is insignificant & I should know. I have almost the same view. I feel a strange kinship with this man who sits less than 30 metres from me and does not know I exist.

It takes a moment but I understand…

Cover down, break through

How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live - H.D Thoreau
Twice now, I have heard this quoted; in twilight after a game of cricket in Pune & at a Bandra pub this weekend. To me, the essence of it has become the proverbial pebble in the mental shoe. You do not know how it got there, between the pad of the 1st & 2nd toe. It is discomforting & irritating. You want to take the shoe off, shake it violently & watch with an almost evil glee as the innocuous object flies out into the distance. But you don't. In the recesses of your mind, you wish the pebble would make it's way out just as it made it's way in. Nudging this is the certainty that it will not. More often than not you continue walking, resigning yourself to temporarily suffering it. It is a familiar approach to you anyway. After a while, the discomfort becomes a part of your shoe, your gait.

The following is my attempt to take the shoe off.

I have spent this weekend thinking abo…