Thursday, February 24, 2011

She Be The One (I)

They met. They talked. He was witty and smart. She was simple, lovable. They chatted for hours.
And they fell in love?
Naah...They hated each other.

Enrique: Hey Trish, how r u?
Trisha: I'm fine, Enrique. How are u?
Enrique: am grt! so have u spoiled any1 else's brand new shirt yet? :D
Trisha: What? I told you Enrique, that was JUST ONE TIME. 
Enrique: sure.. sure. so have u sneezed on any1 else 2day?
Trisha: That's it. I'm going.
Nightcrawler: Hey Trisha, 'ssup?
Trisha: Everything was fine NC until I came here!
Nightcrawler: Eh..
                     Lemme read. 
                     Oh..Haha. Hey Enrique stop bothering this nice girl here.
Enrique: not my fault, nc..she cracks me up! :D
Nightcrawler: *controls laugh* Nah..apologize.
Enrique: okay..sowyy trisha *makes puppy eyes*
Trisha: Oh..Okay.
Enrique: Sure? *persistent puppy eyes*
Trisha: Yeah..It's fine. :)
Enrique: good..coz I was beginning to think that you would unleash your phlegmatic powers on me! :D :D
Trisha: !!!!! ?????
Enrique: :D 
Trisha: :X
           Ok that's it. I'm out of here.
Enrique: *persistent puppy eyes*
Trisha: @$$^&*!

Trisha has logged off.

Enrique: :( 
Nightcrawler: :P u are lucky she was not in front of u. Or else u'd be in trble!
Enrique: Haha.. she's a sweet kid.
Nightcralwer: So she sneezed on somebody?
Enrique: On her Boss. During a Presentation. :D
Nightcrawler: :O omg!
Enrique: She was nervous.

A few days later.

Enrique: Hey nc.
Nightcrawler: Hey Enrique, 'ssup?
Enrique: nuthn' much..bored.
Nightcrawler: aww..I know why. :P
Enrique: huh..why
Nightcrawler: She's not here. :P
Enrique: who?
Nightcrawler: u know, your girl...
Enrique: Which one? :P
Nightcrawler: You know, the one from India...
Enrique: :/
Nightcrawler: So you attending the international chat forum meet next month?
Enrique: eh...dunno. 
Nightcrawler: u know, she might be there... ;)
Enrique: who again?
Nightcrawler: oh..c' know who.....
Enrique: well, am a bit busy. have to do a lot of work. let's c

Nightcrawler has logged off.

Enrique: oh shoot... at least tell me where the meeting is taking place.!

Next month. Spain. Madrid.

The Hotel Villa de Vincci was one of the most renowned hotels of the city. The registered members of the International Chat Forum were to meet at a special event tonight. The ICF had thought this would be a great idea for the members to interact one on one; some of them had known each other for over a year. The members were supposed to wear a tag of their nick so that the others could identify them.

Trisha aka Akangsha had come to Madrid for the first time, exclusively to attend the seminar. Just the seminar? Well we don't know yet. At least that's what she said to her conservative parents before flying off solo to Madrid. Her uncle stayed there so her parents had to agree reluctantly. Akangsha knew however that without her uncle, her parents would have never agreed.

"So exactly where is this meet?" Her uncle had asked her when she arrived.

"It's just near Puerta Del Sol... you know there is a monument and a's walking distance to the old Post Office..." she mumbled.

" use throwing these names to me, I have been here for ten years. I'm not leaving you alone in an unknown city. After all, you are my responsibility now. What will didi- jijaji think? I will ask the driver to drop you. And he will be present to pick you up when you are done." He was firm.

Trisha sighed. And here she thought she would get the chance to roam an unknown city alone. What an adventure it would have been! :(

Elsewhere in the city.

A dark small one bedroomed flat. An alarm clock rang heavily.

A long hand lazily came out of the blanket and thumped the clock shut. It picked up the clock and pulled it under the blanket.

"Oh shit I'm late!" A cry of disbelief came as the blanket was thrown away. A half naked figure crept up. He was tall, fair, had hazel eyes and dark curly hair. "I don't wanna be late..may be she'll be there.." 

Enrique aka Aaron was a late riser, an even late sleeper but brilliant in making computer games. He composed himself. What? No no. He was going for the thrill. Right?

He looked at the mirror opposite his bed. Sleepy eyes stared back at him.

He got up and proceeded to be ready. Tonight he had to look his best.

                                                                                                           (to be continued)

Saturday, February 19, 2011


This post is exactly what the title says. About Nothing. I have become a bit of a stoic nowadays. Nothing upsets me. Nothing disturbs me. Nothing and Nobody. I was musing about it and wondering if perhaps it was a good thing. One of my blogger friends rejoicingly said, "Perhaps? It definitely is a good thing." I was like, ":/.  Yeah Maybe."

Seen enough. Actually things don't bother me as much as people do. I love to get engrossed in things so long as I can do them in an impersonal manner. Or superficially. People, well that's a different ball game altogether. They talk and talk, one time they are hot, the other time they are cold. All my Psychology classes and I still haven't figured out how to deal with them. Magically I can deal with them when I think of their problems as 'things' and approach towards a solution. But otherwise, No Way. I have never been able to figure people out and after years of trying, I don't want to figure them out anymore. 

It's different. It's difficult. To not come out of your reserve in the twelve years of school life. And then to make a strong decision; that you have to mingle with people; see what they are like. Stop being unsocial. But of course, it would never be easy. But you try anyway. People judge you from a distance, look at you with suspicion, and then approach you with trembling steps. It's funny, in a way.

So you find new friends. But it is not easy. But then which things in life are? But they make you come face to face with a question; Why can't human beings be as simple as animals? Life would have been simpler..nicer, probably better. I have mentioned in other posts, how unable I am to understand human beings. I don't blame them. They are what they are. But I am not going to get attached to them any more. I have had enough. And somehow, this indifference does seem better. Life stays peaceful. An intoxication perhaps. But it is better than nonsensical complications. 

Friday, February 18, 2011

On the Eve of Saraswati Puja

I was sitting in the lawn of a multiplex waiting for my friends. The multiplex was full of young couples or would-be couples looking dazzling in bright colors. Saraswati Puja is a revered festival in India, particularly in West Bengal. It is the worship of Devi Saraswati, the goddess of learning and wisdom. Owing to the concentration on learning, this Puja is most widely celebrated in homes, schools and colleges. It therefore also allows youngsters to interact in a more casual manner. 

May be this is the reason why this year, it was widely hailed as the "Bangalider Valentine's Day". Now I find this incessant longing to find Western synonyms to indigenous festivals and traditions, immensely irritating and foolish, but ah, what can you say? India still has a distinct colonial hangover. People pride on not being able to speak their mother tongues. Knowing English is however a must.

So anyways, the girls were bright and beautiful. The guys, well, they were just guys. Some of them really looked good but others...well. Let me tell you a story about this. As I was waiting, I found this beautiful girl in a dazzling white salwar kameez with high heeled shoes approaching. She was with a guy, who was dressed in plain shirt and pants (no traditional wear there). He was average looking and there was nothing exceptional about his features. The girl was beautiful and talking to him. 

He probably said something that made her crack up. The guy smiled. But the girl almost fell down laughing. She couldn't control it. The guy saw this. He tried to smile harder. And very soon he cracked up with laughter as well. He was looking into her eyes, her smile, her face and that gave him a pleasurable happiness. The girl was hardly even looking at him, but she touched his hands lightly in a "Gosh, you are so funny" way. This made him laugh harder. He was still looking at her. Very soon their friends came (I think it was a couple). They went to meet them. This guy, having gained some confidence now, put his hand around the girl's shoulders and she didn't seem to mind. 

From a distance, the flâneur watched. A smile spread over the corners of her mouth. "I have to write about it", she thought. 

The Orator

He gets on bus and stares around. A wave of indifferent faces sit in two separate columns stretching the length of the bus. The space in between these two columns is somewhat filled by office and college going passengers struggling to get a firm hold in the lazily moving vehicle. Today he had to make a good sale. His money was stuck up on the pile of unsold goods that he was now holding. With a quick sweep of gaze towards the passengers, he begins:

"Ladies and Gentlemen, you might have been seeing a lot of hawkers who sell unwanted stuff. But this is something you have never come across. Something that you will really need. The World Cup's coming and it is important to have a schedule of the matches. It helps if it is put together in a book and is handy. So here, I have a book for you. It contains the daily schedule of all the matches happening this World Cup. If you buy this from any shop, you will have to pay at least twelve rupees. But if you buy from me, you can get it for only two rupees. Here have a look at it. If you like it, well then this one's for you."

He approaches some of the passengers sitting in front, specially the men. They take a look at it and then turn away. He approaches some other passengers but they refuse to even look at him, acknowledge his presence. He comes up to this insignificant writer but even she turns away. With one last glance at the bus full of middle class students and officers, he quietly gets down at the next stop, his head bowed down.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day

Like a gift from the heavens, it was easy to tell

It was love from above that could save me from hell
She had fire in her soul it was easy to see
How the devil himself could be pulled out of me

There were drums in the air as she started to dance
Every soul in the room keeping time with their hands
And we sang...

She pulled him closer. 

"You are mad, it's late, we should get going," he said.

She laughed. Her smile, the ever beautiful smile that made him wonder with amazement.

"It's Valentine's Day, silly. Let's dance." She spoke with a childlike feverish excitement. The twinkle in her eyes was contagious.

He was pulled out of his amazement when she pulled his hand towards the middle of the road. He resisted. "I know you are crazy but seriously, now? In the middle of the road? At this time of night?"

"YES....Now means NOW!" She pulled him to the middle of the road. 

"But..But I don't know how to dance..." He protested meekly.

"I will teach you", she winked. Again that naughty smile, the kind that made his heart stop.

It was late in the evening. The road was deserted. It was dark. The dimness of the streetlights, the soft breeze, the rustling leaves steered his passion. She looked at him, her eyes laughing. And suddenly, there was music, as if by magic...

She took his hand and put it on her waist. Their other hands joined in unison. Her eyes sparked fire. His were full of longing. They looked at each other, as they had never before. She turned. Her hair lightly brushed over his face. Their fragrance made his passion more intense. With a firm grasp, he pulled her back. She smiled, that same innocent smile. His eyes were fierce now. With a hand behind her waist, he let her go. She fell back lightly, rose again and looked into his eyes. They radiated heat. Her smile vanished. She stared at those deep hazel eyes welled with passion. And suddenly she felt vulnerable. Overcome with the intensity of his eyes, his firm touch, she felt weak. As if something deep, something dormant was stirring inside her and she did not know what to do. He smiled. She tried to pull away from him but he wouldn't let go. With a strong grasp of the hand, he pulled up her leg. As she stared deep into those eyes, his fingers ran smoothly lightly kissing her soft down. With a terrified jerk, she pulled her leg back and turned back. She was walking away but he softly touched her delicate shoulders, but even his palms were radiating heat. She felt powerless. Her eyes closed. He went right behind her and planted a kiss on her neck. Holding her waist, he quietly took in her warmth. She stood, feeling his aura. Their eyes closed..

In the night sky above, the stars danced with wild flickering lights.

Like a piece to the puzzle that falls into place
You could tell how we felt from the look on our faces
We were spinning in circles with the moon in our eyes
The room left them moving between you and I

We forgot where we were and we lost track of time
And we sang to the wind as we danced through the night

Saturday, February 12, 2011


She was speaking..She spoke all the time. Tried to be funny, tried to be boisterous. Just so he would look at her. Just so he would appreciate her. She knew how boring she was. She knew he would never look at her if she was herself. She knew that. So she went on, trying to be funny and trying to be smart. But whenever she asked for his opinion, he did not reply except for a casual 'yes' or 'no' or 'good'. So she tried...tried to find things that were interesting to him, pretended to be interested in those things..The one time he showed some interest in what she liked, she was overjoyed! She gladly began telling him about it until he fell asleep. The next day, she again began, but he was busy. She brushed off everything aside, and began talking about the things that interested him. He spoke. She listened. She wasn't paying much attention to what he said; she was just taken in by his lovely voice. His warm voice. When he ended, there was not much left for her to speak of. But she wanted to hear his voice. Just his voice would make her happy. So she played the clown again. Hoped for him to smile. Just to hear a few of his words. He never looked. He was busy..

The Song of Love


I was waiting for you Susana. I was standing in the rain, looking at the leaves. The water dripping over the new leaves. The glistening green. The first rains of the season. I waited. For you. I didn't need anybody else if you were with me Susana. You, I loved you. You were the sole reason of my existence, the sole harbinger of my happiness. I remembered you. You and I.... we were meant to be together. Forever. I am still waiting...

"Sir", the voice broke his day dreams. He looked up. It was their family servant. "Ma'am is asking whether you are joining her for dinner or not."

"Tell her I'm not hungry". He looked down, overcome by the sudden water in his eyes. He got a call. The voice on the other side sounded rough. He answered, cold and confident. "I don't care... when will they pay the money?...Good. Get the full money. And then..shoot them." He put his phone down.


The first time I saw you. That was the first time I fell in love. I did not think you would even look at me. But you did. I was overjoyed. You and Me....that was how life was supposed to be. We got married in a hurry. And all this timeI thought, it was because you couldn't wait to be with me....It was because you loved me. I smiled coz of you....But now.

Sitting at the breakfast table, she was thinking. The servant came and informed her that the master would not be coming. "Not hungry?" She smiled pitifully at him. "Fine. Take away the dishes". 

"But Ma'am...", the old servant who was too old not to notice the subtleties of the people in the empty house  protested meekly.

"Don't worry, I'll be fine", she smiled and left. She went to her room and watched out the window. It had begun to rain. The raindrops flowed against the smooth glass. Her hands on the glass, she desperately tried to break free.


I nestled in your warm breasts. Even when he beat you. The warm nest that you made with your hands. The safest place. He wouldn't be able to hurt me there. You and I..... I, in the shadow of you......Nursed with your milk, your kindness. How could you leave me? Even when he came that day, I hid into my nest. But you...there was nothing to save you. I couldn't protect you even though you had protected me all life! He left. And I sat near you. Calling you. Asking you to wake up. But you never did. I am still waiting for you to wake up....

He came near her. She sat up. "I...thought you were sleeping", he chose his words carefully. 

"Why are you here?" She asked with a  lifelessness in her voice.

His voice shivered. He couldn't speak. "I...I came to see how you were doing."

"I am fine. Go away." She remained cold.

He went towards the small window beside her bed. The rain was still falling. "I was thinking today," he said quietly, "do you remember we used to have so much fun during rainfall? Whenever the first rains came, we would run out into the vast green plains and get wet. There was no stopping us." His eyes looked in the distance, beyond the glass, the water, even beyond the horizon, desperately searching for those innocence-filled days.

Her eyes flickered. 

"Where were you? And why are you so wet Susana?" A stern voice asked.

"Papi, I'm sorry", the little girl replied scared. "I got wet."

The sturdy figure gave out a hearty laugh. "Come here my little girl", Susana approached fearfully. Her father picked her up in his arms, "My little girl....don't you realize that if you get wet, you will fall sick? Now quick..." He put her down. "Go inside and ask your mother to come", he replied smilingly. 

Her mother was stitching. "Mami, Papi's calling you", the little girl cheerfully informed. Her mother was deeply engrossed in the needlework; she pricked her fingers. Generous blood oozed out.....

Susana stared. The cries of her mother echoed through her. 

"....and if you need anything," He was trying to say, desperately trying to make his voice heard, the kind he had done for the past fifteen years, "Just tell the nurse". He smiled. "See you Susana". And he left.

The rain was still flowing.

Somewhere a woman stood, in the rain, waiting for her love to return…

P.S: I am profoundly indebted to the brilliant novel Pedro Paramo by Juan Rulfo for this piece. 

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Narcissism and Hollow Man

Those of you who read me regularly know that I am a person intrigued by darkness. After a long time today I saw Hollow Man again. It's amazing what Kevin Bacon has done in the movie. The first time I saw the movie, I was a child; I remember getting scared and yet being immensely attracted towards him. May be that's what power does to you. It intoxicates you; grasps you in its powerful hands, seduces you. Sebastian Caine (Kevin Bacon's character), the narcissistic scientist, then had little choice but to fall prey to its powerful grasp.

He is that kind of a person who is extremely self obsessed and suffers from a God Complex. This is a personality disorder in which the person thinks that he can achieve more than is humanly possible. He also thinks that his opinions matter more than of those around him. People with God Complex (the medical term is "Narcissistic Personality Disorder") cannot imagine themselves to fail. They are absolutely scared of failure. In that way, they hover on a thin line between superiority and inferiority complex. 

Sebastian Caine is a successful molecular biologist who is hungry for more success. For him, success is more important than money. Success, the sole thing in the world that makes him feel worthy. Success gives him a sense of power. People who suffer from Narcissistic Personality Disorder also have a hard time being close with people. They can be successful in large gatherings but when it comes to one-to-one conversation, they generally lag behind. In Sebastian's case, he has trouble keeping up with even a group conversation.

He is repeatedly referred to as the "genius" in the movie. His colleague says that "genius is the ability to go from A to D without passing through B and C. Sebastian can do that. But I need that B and C." Not to mention, Sebastian's extreme self obsession, where he refers to himself as "God". His confidence increases his sex appeal, no doubt, but it is only when the water has settled do you begin to see the mud underneath. 

One thing that has always amused me about people; they refuse to admit that a person can have a mental problem if he's a genius. Human beings have the ability to completely "not" read in between the lines and to accept a thing as it is given to them. What has genius got to do with mental stability anyway? It is wonderful to see how people in the movie never think that Sebastian can be a threat, till he starts acting erratic. Only his colleague and ex-girlfriend, Linda (Elisabeth Shue) who knows him well, suspects foul play. But by the time they take any action, the damage has already been done.

What do you do when you have the power to get away with almost anything? Most of us would be thrilled at the idea. For Sebastian who is a self obsessed freak, ultimate power would not only serve to him as an escape route to massage his ego; it would also make him safe, away from the reach of every other mortal. 

In the beginning, invisibility was a curse for Sebastian. But when he is forced to stay in a glasshouse under observation for 10 days, he begins to lose his cool. This was his project, his brainchild. How on earth can a bunch of "underachievers" take his glorious position, treat him as a "lab rat"? He goes out of the laboratory for a couple of hours and returns to his apartment. There through the window he sees his beautiful neighbor changing her clothes; something he has often seen before and sighed upon. 

He turns back and it suddenly dawns upon him, should he approach her? He quickly shakes his head at the thought and proceeds to leave. But then, a question, "Who's gonna know?" pricks him and he shakes off the last garb of humanity. He enters his neighbor's house by deceit and rapes her. And all the time, she does not understand who's doing this to her. 

After this Sebastian relatively calm returns to his laboratory, obviously happy at the "conquest". When his colleague asks him whether he had done anything to the girl, he nonchalantly replies that he may have messed with her "a little bit". Sebastian's hunger for power is also probably seen in the very early phase where he proceeds to touch Sarah, the vet while she is sleeping. The movie is extremely sexual in its portrayal of Sebastian's power hungry nature. 

The only person Sebastian treats with some respect, and possibly fear is his ex-girlfriend and fellow scientist, Linda. She makes him feel vulnerable. He thinks that she is like her; hungry for success, for power and that is why she understands him. Linda goes to a heavy extent to be successful in the movie, but unlike Sebastian she does not lose her humanity. In the end she kills him.

When Sebastian sees Linda with another colleague, he becomes furious. Rejection is another thing people who with God Complex cannot tolerate. And to see that her present boyfriend is working under him, enrages him more. It is at this moment, that he decides to unleash his power, show his brute strength to the world, to all the other humans, who are of necessity below him. He decides to teach them a lesson. 

After this, there is a scene where he tries to touch Linda as she sleeps, but she wakes up and he has to leave. I did not want to get into the whole masculine preoccupation with authority about which I am sure, Monsieur Freud has worked in details. But it just occurred to me, during the writing of this post, that Sebastian's need to prove his authority over women in a violent way probably can be related to his insecurities of being a male. 

There can be multiple readings of Hollow Man. For instance, who does the hollow man refer to? Is it only the invisible Sebastian Caine, or also the power hungry deeply troubled scientist, Sebastian who wants to prove desperately to the world that he is the best? Is hollowness only a physical state or also a mental emptiness? These are questions that the movie compelled me to think about. 

For all my criticism of Sebastian Caine, I cannot denounce the fact that he is one of the most intriguing characters I have ever found in movies, besides Patrick Bateman(American Psycho) and Kathryn Merteuil (Cruel Intentions). While American Psycho II and Wicked have been female-centric psycho thrillers, Mini's First Time was about a cold and calculating girl who does not hesitate to kill her mother and put her stepfather in jail. However undoubtedly the list tops with Kevin Bacon and Christian Bale and I don't think any other Hollywood actor would have been able to do the roles they did.

I have always been immensely attracted towards Bacon, specially after watching Hollow Man. I remember wanting him to see in kinder movies, in less violent roles, but well that opportunity never came (I did see him in Tremors and hated it). His sex appeal is raw, unrelenting and captivating. With one look, he can make you do things you would never dream of doing. And you cannot help but surrender to him. I remember trying to justify his role in Hollow Man, looking for an inch of kindness, or a sign of vulnerability here and there. However when all has been said and done, Sebastian Caine is one of the most sexist, insecure and impeccably hollow men in movie history. But then so is Patrick Bateman. and how can I forget the evergreen Kathryn Merteuil? And yes, I love all these deeply troubled and dark characters. And I am deeply attracted to them. :)