Friday, November 23, 2012

The New-er Man

I recently read an article on Man-myths that women still believe are true. As I was going through it, my vagina almost cried out in desolate anguish at some of those points. Specifically, one myth-busted is that men don’t find it uncomfortable, in fact welcome it, when women are the sexual aggressors in the relationship. The other is that men are totally comfortable letting the woman be the main breadwinner. Why is this upsetting me? Because the two things that one could depend on a man to do – be horny and be able to bring the jam to the table - is now slowly also becoming the woman’s prerogative.

As a person who lives alone, takes care of my house, my car, my work, my bills, my taxes, my business and often, my own orgasm, I’d really like to believe that when it comes to a relationship, I won’t have to lug a romantic laggard across the threshold, or work two jobs so I can be the primary breadwinner because – wait for it – “he’s totally comfortable with that”. This does not mean that I want a chauvinist as a partner, but yes, I like the fact that I can depend on my partner to come on to me, to splurge on me, without me worrying about where the next rent or mortgage payment is coming from. I do that anyway – why must I tolerate another whole person in my emotional and physical space just so I can do more of the same??

Don’t get me wrong – I understand the trauma women face when they have to encounter PMS-like mood swings from their man because she’s earning more than him, and yes, we’d all like to have partners who’re self-assured enough to not let that dent their spirit. But there’s a thin line between being self-assured and being a lazy-ass free-loader. And it’s that thin easy-to-cross line that scares me. Because it starts from “men being totally comfortable with not fulfilling their ‘traditional roles’ to men demanding and expecting that women fulfill them.”

It scares me because I’m a woman looking for a partner. However, during that search, one of the most common statements I’ve heard about my personality is that I’m intimidating. This trait apparently only comes into effect in the romantic arena, and miraculously goes completely AWOL in friendships and familial relationships. Why? Because it seems that when I’m auditioning someone for the role of friend-sexual partner-family, I have to tip-toe around their oh-so-sensitive natures. We must accept their retiring personality, laugh at their weak attempts at humour, shy away from discussions about religion or politics or money because heaven forbid, we intimidate them. Me? I’d rather scare them off over dinner, than find out in an emergency that they cannot step up.

And it’s not really their fault. Women have been socially and temperamentally conditioned to be nice, accommodating, flexible and always loving because these were the key qualities – along with social mores – that would ensure that you found a mate. This was indeed crucial because, even till 50 odd years ago, it was the male partner who brought financial security to our lives. And over so many years of social training, men too got used to expecting those traits from us. But the world’s economy kind of got away from us to the extent that most men today prefer working partners. The irony? What it takes to be an effective and high-achieving ‘working’ partner is also what pulls us back from being the above stated easy-going, ego-boosting, whatever-you-want-is-perfectly-okay-with-us-because-you-know-best people we’re expected to be. 

The other day I went out with Manee. Manee was introduced to me by a friend, and quite out of the blue he asked me out. We chatted – well, he talked a lot, and didn’t let me finish my responses to questions he asked (oh well, I didn’t say it was a perfect date, did I?) – over some wine and fritters. At the end of the evening, when I offered to split the bill (as I do on most dates), he said one of the most convoluted sentences I’ve ever heard. 

He said, “I’d like to take care of the bill, but I understand that you may feel offended, so if you choose, you may in fact split the bill though it would be just as okay for me to take care of this round, and if you want, maybe the next time, we could split it or maybe this time is also okay. Whatever you decide.” Honestly, a simple yes, please or no, thank you would have sufficed and been quite consequence-free. Instead now, at the end of the evening, two people stared at each other across a chasm of political correctness and over-sensitivity to non-existent feelings to find a way to clear a small bill. I stared at him and said, “So, should I put my card in with yours then?” 


If you want. Whatever you decide. Leave the ball in his/her court. Go with the flow. Words that are increasingly defining our generation – men and women – and the inability to follow through on what YOU want if it involves another human being. We walk around in increasingly cushioned cocoons with pseudo-hyper-aware sensitivity beacons to other peoples’ feelings, and find ourselves paralyzed when it comes to going after what we want. Men seem comfortable giving that up and yet, the most attractive feature about men has been their confidence, their ability to go after what they want – even if its misguided and to make women feel looked after and safe.

But that’s hard work. It takes character and courage. Many would rather stay in bed and let someone else take those decisions. Society has a word for them – it’s “children”. 

Which brings us to the crossroads. Ofcourse it’s understandable why men are totally okay with, in fact welcome it, when women become the aggressors – financially and sexually. When you come to think of it, it’s not that different from women who think it’s totally okay, if fact would welcome it, for the men to have monthly cramps, insert tampons into their genital orifices to stem the flow of blood, carry a baby for 9 months to term, breast-feed the spawn, have sagging boobs and cellulite, and ofcourse have their balls ripped out as something the size of a watermelon tears through them and is hailed as the “miracle of life.” We would really be okay with that.

So let’s make a deal. When the men can do the latter, we’ll do the former. What say? But until that becomes a real possibility, I’d suggest the guys just grow a pair and continue to try and live up to the ideal. If they want to be laid. Only if they want it.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

"Why Don't you Listen, Mom???"

Something strange happens when women become mothers. No, it isn't the mommy clothes or the widening hips but more of the intangibles. It's almost like they make a deal with the Devil - "I'll have this spawn of hell in return for enormous powers." And one of the powers that they have - including the eyes at the back of the head (yes, that's real) - is having the following sentences mean absolutely nothing to them. Even when you're 30.

"You can't tell me what to do!" 

These words just bounce right off them. They nod and agree about how you're old enough to make your own decisions, about how many more responsibilities you have now – with a career and investments and everything else, how you have grown up to be a mature woman, and then Wham! Be home by 10. Put your clothes away. Save some more money. Watch that car watch that car!! No matter how many times you say these words to her, it doesn’t matter.

She tells you anyway.

"Stop the emotional blackmail!" 

Your mother signed on a strange dotted line when she gave birth to you, a dotted line that gave her immense powers. We all know the one where she knows that you'd eaten the last slice of meatloaf even when it was hours ago and you’d washed the dishes. She didn’t even think for a minute that it was Tammy, your imaginary friend! The other power she got was being able to twist your innards into a pulpy gutted mess by just one barely quivering lip and a heartbroken stare. This is how she got you to call her everyday without fail even when you were hungover and your tongue felt like sandpaper after another late night bash in the dorm. This is how she ensures that you visit even when your life is going to hell in a handbasket. So when you say those words to her, all she hears is “mumble mumble mumble.”

The blackmail continues, and you simmer in low-heat while you visit your family with her, get to know your nephews and nieces, hear her laugh at a funny paragraph in the book you got her for her birthday, and you think of all the things you could be doing in your apartment, watching TV, drinking beer all by yourself. And you think, “This emotional blackmail is bullshit!”

"Butt out of my life!"

Right up there with the first one, this one works in the opposite way. You say one thing, and she hears, “Mom, I really need you to tell me what to do.” This is why, whenever you say these words to her, she returns with “Tell me what’s going on!” The sad part is, you tell her what’s going on, with the total understanding that she won’t have the answer. And often, she doesn’t... or even worse, she tells you what you already know, deep down in the recesses of your heart, things that you don’t want to acknowledge. But sometimes, just sometimes, she says or does the exact thing that changes everything. And she sees it in your eyes, that you underestimated her once more, that everything you thought you knew or could expect from her has just been proven wrong. And she smiles, because it’s the same look you’ve had on your face every time she surprised you – about the meatloaf or your boyfriend.

"I hate you I hate you!"

This one is the last great weapon in your arsenal. You bring it out when everything else has failed. When she has refused to let you deal with your life by yourself, when she has insisted on fighting your bad choices even when you knew they were wrong, when she has categorically chosen to misunderstand what you meant when you said “Butt out!” When nothing has worked, you bring this out, certain that this will finally make her stop, make her not believe in you, make it finally okay for you to not constantly try to live up to her expectations of you. And like all great weapons, this promises effective destruction. And it works, she gets that you hate her. What you forgot however, is that this doesn’t make her hate you. And since she doesn’t hate you, she doesn’t stop.

"Please don't die Mum.."

And then, years later, as you sit amidst your grown nephews and nieces, your cousins and your extended family that she ensured you build ties with, at a moment in your life when you have achieved everything you didn’t think possible, and finally have come to terms with how much of a solo cheerleader your mom has been, when you find yourself on the other side of the mom-conundrum and have learned to laugh about how your kids seem to think you were born yesterday, she lies on a bed, frail and exhausted, smiling at your pitiful jokes designed to make her laugh, to not think about an improbable tomorrow. She lies there and you finally squeeze these words out of your heart, and hope that just this once, she will listen.

And, just like every other time, this time too, she doesn’t listen.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Guilt and Redemption

Grief. The grief of a child being torn from a parent's bosom - that's what the people of Hindustan faced when the battlelines were drawn. It's that grief that has made India - and Pakistan - angry, it's grief that has held her back.

Sixty five years ago, on the night of 14th August 1947, the child and parent separated. People walked away from their homes to their new lands, to their new lives. I was there. I saw the police standing in line, I saw the heavy security. I was a part of the group that was supposed to ensure that nothing went wrong, that no one was hurt beyond the grief that was now everyone's legacy.

I knew that it was a situation fraught with danger, an underlying hatred was burning through the land, infecting everything in sight. I knew that the only way to stay untouched was to deal with it behind a shield of calmness, strength and empathy. I failed.

The unending lines of people filing past each other became structured. I was nervous about "them" - my brothers who had suddenly become strangers. One man-made line across a contract of freedom ensured that I didn't trust them, their bleak, angry faces held secret plans to hurt "my people, my land." So, to forestall any malicious moment, I stole across to their line of control to "help" them. I knew the only way I could save my people was a preemptive strike. The cold was seeping through my uniform, clutching my heart in its grip, not letting me shake off my fear of the other.

Someone must have heard me. Like me, they too must have sought any advantage they could get. We were already opposing warriors across one bold rivulet of grief. As I walked into a clearing with Zafer, my armed security guard, there was pin drop silence. We stopped. The air pressed down upon us. And then everything exploded - men came running down the sides of the mountain, trees were infested with soldiers, armed to the teeth. They saw Zafer's gun and suddenly seventy odd barrels pointed at us. I knew this is how I die. As I raised my rifle as a final salute to my life, gunfire ripped through the angry silence of the border. I fell, clutching my stomach, a bullet tearing apart my insides, and my final moments were spent watching the sorrow-laden people break rank and run to the other, intent on washing off their rage with the others' blood.

I caused the first bloodbath that has ever since become the norm for these two countries. That load is unbearable to carry.

Until today. I found myself back there - pulled through time and space, back to that fateful night. There I was, once again surrounded by my team. Zafer was looking at me, wondering what we should do. The night was the same, the situation as grim. Nothing looked different. I nodded to Zafer, "Let's go."

Zafer looked at me doubtfully, but I set off, determined to change things this time around. We reached the enclosure and I sensed rather than heard the people crowding us, fingers tightening on the triggers. The night waited. In the ensuing burst of activity, I saw Zafer raise his gun, ready to attack. Trembling with the audacity of changing the future, I shouted, "Hello?"

There was screaming, and thundering footsteps of armed soldiers shook the ground, the unmistakable sound of their rifles being cocked and I knew that before too long, the first bullet will tear through me. I was terrified.

"Hello?" I shouted again.
"Who is it? Who the fuck are you?"
"I'm from the Indian security, this is Zafer from my team..."

Guns got whipped out, seventy barrels pointed straight at our chests. This was a firing squad. Zafer instinctively put his first victim right in the crosshairs, uncomprehending of my motives to lure him out to this potential death field, but unwilling to go down without a fight. I put my hand on his gun, pushing it down to point harmlessly at the ground. I put my gun on the ground and raised my arms high above my head.

"What the fuck is this? Blow them apart!"

In the midst of the screaming and shouting, a woman leaned down from the tree and said with a voice of pure authority, "What are you doing here?"

Behind them, I could see the single file of people getting antsy. There were a few furtive looks, some glances to see if they could get away with murder. I looked at the woman.

"I just wanted to ask if you could use some help."

There was pin drop silence as Zafer looked incredulously at me. The woman smiled.

"Yeah, we definitely could."

There was no bloodbath that day, or the next. Till date, India and Pakistan remain as family just separated by an easily jumped neighborhood boundary wall. I wept, as the burden of sixty five years got lifted from me.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Full Alert! It's the Friend Zone!!

Here’s a little secret – women don’t want to put men in the friend zone any more than men want to be there. And the only thing that decides which men are friends and which ones aren’t is the level of chemistry – the ‘spark’ – that is generated when two people meet. Tell any single woman about an absolutely great guy who is funny, smart, quirky, gets the jokes, has a nice voice, is single and straight, that woman is already thinking about what you look like and how you kiss. And if you show up, looking presentable and smelling nice, and she discovers that all she’s heard about you is almost true, you’re home free. Knowing that, why do so many guys NOT make that tiny bit of effort to pull them through to atleast close to the finishing line? Our imaginations have already done a lot of the work.. But just... like... a little help?

To be clear, I like men who have the ability to not only make my brains quiver with excitement, but also my loins jump in anticipation. They’re BOTH important. One without the other will never work on the longish-term scale of things. 

I get that it’s hard enough to engage me at an intellectual level – you have to know the right movie and book references, you have to be able to chat easily and without aggravation and all of the fun stuff – but if you’ve got me there, that’s 71% of the job done. Well done you! If this was a round of Who Wants to be a Millionaire, you’d be just two steps short of being one for the long haul. But whether that long haul is going to be with me as a friend or as a sex-kitten depends entirely on how the remaining 29% pans out. And that 29% needs you to bring your A-game to the table. Come on! 

I’ve recently gone out with a couple of people - semi-blind dates, if you will. At first go – the run-up to the “date” – it’s so much fun. The jokes are spot on, the conversations are meaningful. And finally, there’s the “Let’s meet” moment. Now, I’ve never had a problem meeting strangers. Compound fun conversations with my almost-vice for new people, and the stage is set for all sorts of mayhem. Except for one thing. BOTH of them – let’s call them Tweedledum and Tweedledee - show up as if they’re attending the losers’ party, wearing pins that say, “Yawn! What’s the point?” And then I show up. Without going into conceit territory, I know I make an impact.

Tweedledum, after months of chasing me up on Facebook, finally asks me out for a movie – Avengers. This is a particularly fun thing because T’dum works in the movie industry, has in fact worked with some of the people who have worked on the film. All very exciting, particularly if you’re in the business. I land up, casual chic, to meet a guy who’s in gym sweats. No, not the street-wear gym sweats, but the “I just left my gym 10 minutes ago and didn’t shower” kind of gym sweats. His gym, and the movie theatre, are 15 minutes away from his house. But instead, it’s like he wanted me to see the worst of him – the kind of stuff women hope men they like will never discover about them, this chap brought it all to the first meeting. And, after the movie, where we chatted about stories, filmmaking and everything we love about it, he didn’t walk me to my car in the deserted basement parking lot. Instead he said, “So, I’ll leave you here (in the elevator) because otherwise, I’ll have to go through the whole security bag check and everything.” Points dropped from 71% to 43% in the space of 50 real-time minutes. And as we all know, that kind of drop in the market is unrecoverable. 

Tweedledee, in comparison, was not so awful. The conversation continued to be free-flowing, and easy. But has anyone ever noticed the awkward way slightly clumsy guys try and make physical contact when there’s no road to help you cross, no steps to help you down? It’s a poke on the arm, or this really weird hand tapping on shoulder thing. Well, T’dee was exactly like that. With unkempt messy hair (no, not the sexy bed-head we all love) that desperately needed renewed acquaintanceship with a pair of scissors, ill-fitting jeans and too-tight to be comfortable plaid shirt, his chances seemed slim. And the final stroke was one-sided gushing. He ended the evening with “You look really pretty... I feel like an ogre next to you... I mean, you’re so pretty that, if this wasn’t the first time we were meeting, I’d definitely be doing more than just shaking your hand when I say goodbye.” Sweet, huh? Not. Because – ewww! – would I want more than a handshake from you after this first meeting? Shudder. So I smiled, acknowledged the compliment, and then said, “That’s sweet, but you assume way too much.”

Yes, deep down, under layers of patience and humour and kindness (yes, it's there even if you don't see it in this post), I am shallow. But I’m not looking for Ryan Gosling (No, wait. I AM looking for Ryan Gosling, but I’m working on the realistic probability that I may not get him. Lots of issues – he’s in LA, I’m in India. Long distance, as we all know, can be a bitch. Also, can never really trust actors – you never know when they’re performing for the imaginary cameras, and when they’re being real people. Those kind of pesky things. Moving on.) And more importantly, I’m not going to compare every guy I meet with Ryan Gosling, or even his look-alike. But I am interested in meeting men who can make my knees just a little weak. Luckily for most people out there, many women are more into what’s in a man’s head than outside it. But really, that particular trait does not make us completely blind.

So there I am, with one more potential sexual mate pushed closer and more firmly into friend zone. The really irritating part of it is that guy read my interest correctly. He knows I was into him. Maybe that’s the reason he figured that the 29% was already in the bag and decided to bring his much-hidden sloth to the party. But after last night, he’ll always wonder why he doesn’t feel that vibe coming off me anymore. He’ll try harder, he’ll stay in touch more often, he’ll send me beautiful poetry in texts, he’ll assume that he just needs to give me space to come to terms with this whole new feeling of being in love. He’ll try to fix me, assume that my fear of being abandoned is what has made me recoil from him, and he’ll assure me that he’s not going anywhere. It’ll all be very sweet and desperate. 

And me? I’ll just slowly back away, meet him but more often in groups, chat with him as easily but about spark-neutral subjects. I’ll ask him about whether he’s seeing someone and then tell him that I’ve got the perfect person to set him up with. Because he is a wonderful person, and deserves love. And then, one morning, he’ll wake up to get a call from me about some other guy whom I went out for dinner with and really liked. And how I want us all to meet together, so he can judge if that guy is really good, or if my hormones are making my decisions for me. And then it’ll dawn on him that he’s my friend. And nothing more.


Like Bryan Adams, I too will try anything twice. I’m acutely aware that first times are fraught with too many pitfalls – pitfalls of expectation, of the general weirdness of meeting a stranger, of the pressure to quickly sift through multiple inputs to make sense of it all. The second time, everyone is more prepared and you can genuinely gauge if your knees are shaking because of excitement or boredom. So, with a certain amount of trepidation, I schedule another meeting, this time at a club. There will be dancing, drinking and all sorts of hedonistic opportunities. And yet, if after all this, he can’t bring his A-game to the table, maybe he just needs to be sitting at the kiddie table and leave dating to the grown ups.. 

It’s not pretty. It’s bloody, messy and often cruel. But it’s real.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Intimate Strangers

We write beautiful words to each other, sometimes whisper them softly and let the tenuous electronic connection between us give it meaning and tonality. Every digitally created alphabet carries weight and an incredible lightness that keeps me intrigued. And somewhere in the midst of the words you say and the ones I hear, you slowly get added to my collection of the best moments I have.

You have no flaws, or atleast, you have no flaws that I can’t overlook. Everything you say – the idiom you use, the exclamations of surprise, even the long silences – all add up to create your perfection. You have humor, courage, a snarkiness that’s surprisingly becoming when it’s not directed at me or anyone I love. You even have a smile that melts the inside of my bones, makes me want to be funny so I see more of it. It doesn’t matter that I don’t know the color of your eyes, because I know they smile before your lips know they have to catch up.

You live just far enough away to be anyone I want you to be. You live close enough to be real in a way that few have been before you. I carry you around in my pocket, available at the stroke of a few keys, a quick “Tell me a secret!” or an extended “Tell me your story”. I’m speechless when you agree to both and disappoint on neither.

All these molecules of laughter, a growing trust, an intangible togetherness and you say, “We’re friends” when we could pass each other on the street and not know that the other was within touching distance. It doesn’t matter. None of it does. I won't let it.

So what if you're your best only as a figment of my imagination?

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

In a Battlefield, Screams go Unheard...

Those same battles, often fought
The adversary undefined
The blood on the soil turns blue
A salute to friends lost
You move from arena to battlefield
Gladiators in the art of love
Raging against the immovable
Passionate for something unholdable
The fields become crimson, the faces stained with pain
Their quest unparalleled
Our fates aeons ago sealed
It’s time to move on, a higher cliff, a different view
Change the visage, drive your heart
Into believing again
In the indifferent stars which shine
On the war, if not on you

I, Dreamer in Absentia

We breathe poetry, in a world where stab wounds are the norm
We build bridges in places where fires destroy all
We love deeply, even in the moments before we take the fall
All for the final puzzle piece where one size doesn't fit all...

Today, while reading a book and having a solo lunch, I realized that I missed myself. Not in the sense of 'I don't know who I am' , but in the tangible sense of perceiving a complete human being. I miss having another perspective, someone who sees how you walk, or what the back of your head looks like. Someone who will be able to tell you in detail about all you can't see about yourself, someone who can watch you sideways.

My perspective is uni-dimensional. There's only so much of myself I can know. It's not self-esteem I'm talking about.. it's more like... even the silver on the back of the mirror needs someone to stand in front of its shiny side, to let it know of its true nature.Yeah, like that.

I miss that.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Monday Brings the Blues...

Life just sucked today.

A TV show I was pitching for tanked without a whimper. An animation film I was looking forward to making died without so much as a last few meaningful words. My editor of a potential book hasn't got back to me about a chapter I wrote (and in my current frame of mind, it was a crappy chapter and everyone hates me). And then, as the icing from Hell on a cake of brimstone, my mother says, "Maybe you should give up all this media thing and come stay with me."

Yep, I had the 'our daughter lives in the room above the garage' moment. Crap.

The thing is, she tapped right into the core of my fears - what if I'm really not good enough? In an industry that's spilling over with mediocrity and some flashes of real genius, what if I'm one of those that needs to be shunted out, for the greater good? What if... what if... what if I'm the wrong person in the right place at the right time?


On the bright side, I also ran for 20 minutes straight. Okay, it doesn't sound like much but you have to understand that I'm not a runner at all and I haven't been to the gym in months... Sure, I collapsed, and it's nowhere near the 21kms of the marathon I dream of getting through some day, but it was a start.

And a couple of total strangers made me laugh today. More on that later, even if it is to differentiate the experiences as being portentous or merely noteworthy.

So not a total disaster. I have been given two days to mope by my friends. I better get down to it.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

No Goodbyes..

Remember all those teary goodbyes we say to so many people - the breakups, the heartbreaks, the fuck-offs (someone cried then too, you know) - and we swear to ourselves that we will never see them again? Yeah, don't bother. Next time some person looks you in the eye, and tells you that this is the last time you'll see them, just smile and say, 'We'll see." Because honestly, you will be seeing them again. And it won't be such a bad thing.

This week has seen the exes crawling out of the woodwork. Everytime I see or hear from one of them, I'm transported back to the time when lots of tears and anger and resentment were the prime features of the relationship. At some point or the other, each one of them has told me (or has been told by me) that this was the 'last time'. I wish time travel was a reality right now because then I'd take a short trip down memory lane to point and laugh obnoxiously at the people we were. Maybe even sell popcorn for the show.

But here's the thing. Even though I'm amused by the antics, and expect nothing of any real meaning to come through except maybe nostalgia and some laughs, I'm really glad that those doors are still open. It makes it easier, for instance, to be in a coffee shop and have two exes in the immediate neighborhood, while you prepare to meet the third. It feels good to remember that there was a time that you put yourself out there fearlessly, and while your tastes did veer to the highly dysfunctional, it also veered to the talented and the bright. And ofcourse, you see how wrong they are for the person they turned you into.

But because they came back, and they always will, you realize that you weren't horribly wrong to choose them, and even though there were times when you hated each other, there was real love there too. Maybe someday you'll even realize that, because there are no cut-off dates, whom you choose has less to do with how long they'll stay in your life (though extra points should go to those who last longer than a hail mary), and more to do with how they'll change you.

And hopefully, the next time you feel your heart race, you'll remember to factor this in.

Seems doubtful.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Coffee Moments

Is it love when you bump into the ex-object of your affection/betrayal/complicated friendship after years of no-contact-for-reasons-everyone-knows, and you realize just how much you still miss them? Or is it merely a weird hook thing where you only want what you can’t have.

I bumped into Mark today. We were at an incredibly dull event, both of us doing our civic duty, armed with our respective weapons against mass boredom. Things have been awkward between us for years, thanks to all the shit that happened, and I was expecting just another perfunctory ‘Hey, what’s up… ok, take care” kind of 30-second conversation which has become our default interaction whenever common friends, loud music nights and other circumstances have thrown us together. After that, we would have the freedom to avoid each other by diving headlong into our books, no harm no foul.

Imagine my surprise then, when he actually asked me to have coffee with him. Coffee implied going somewhere else, just the two of us, and being forced to chat with each other across the table, atleast for the amount of time it takes to finish a mocha. I know it doesn’t sound like much, but this is a HUGE deal. In that half hour, we kinda-sorta caught up with each others’ latest projects (work), discussed the state of Indian television and film, and ofcourse, the weather. As we carefully tap-danced around each others minefields, I caught myself thinking, "This isn't how it used to be...but atleast it’s something."

Would he have sought me out had we not been forced to stay in a boring place, doing boring things? If his girlfriend had any intention of showing up? Had any of his other friends been there to get coffee with him? Doubt it. That’s what makes me pathetic, because when it comes to him, I suppose I’ll take what I can get. But my heart soared as we laughed together, and just for a moment, I got a glimpse of who we could have been.

Then, at the end of the three hours (three hours?? Yes, he also chose to stand with me in an interminably long line, and we smiled and shared amused glances with each other throughout. Yes, it counts), as we awkwardly hugged goodbye, all I wondered was – was this the start of a new chapter in a friendship or just the end of a brief truce?

All I know that I miss my friend, and I hope he can find his way back to me someday. Love, and all that it means, is just background noise.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Pep Talk to An Exhausted Party Girl...

There's a party, a bunch of people
Call them friends if you like
An open bar, food to eat
and the DJ plays the time of our lives

It's Saturday, past ten in the p.m.
Whatcha doin' girl, don't you want to be in it?
The rollercoaster of an awesome time
Is promising you a good, good night innit?

So jump baby jump
With your glitter and your heels
Reach for your sadness
Through the fugue of alcoholic dreams

Leave it behind, your day or your week
Nobody cares girl, as long as you leap
Keep the smile loose, keep your body tight
You know what they say doll, Holly Go light..

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Did you miss me today?

You missed me today
 A name without a face
A tale without an end
Just another question hanging in mid-air

Do you dance?
Or are you the marionette
Attached to strings

Do you stumble
Along the thin line
of truth and lies

Do you laugh
At the cosmic joke
that plays every day

Do you crumble
With the sound in your head
of their cries

'Cuz we're the left-over remains
 Of a Time that knew better
But we didn't move a finger
To change the beat of its drum.

Since you missed me today
We weren't ever quite done
So just wait in the wings
While I wonder if you're the One.