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The Relationship Jeans

I once had an ex who lived near the cemetery. This was great, because when our sex life died I could bury it there.

What is it about falling in love that makes someone so stupid? So stupid that they sometimes forget themselves and everything that defines them- their ideas, beliefs, likes, dislikes. It’s absolutely appalling.

I had an ex who was bad at everything except looking like he was good at everything. Every waking moment he spent personifying a chimney with his lips habitually rounded around some cheap cigarette. Since he was ever so occupied doing PR of his 0 skills efficiency, I- his wonderfully feminist girlfriend took it up to compliment his PR antics.

I started, via my broken battered PG’s washing machine- Anika’s Laundromat services. My parent’s sent me to study, and I studied- how to wash clothes, iron them, and stitch up any holes.

Stupid relationships are exactly that. Stitching up holes. Instead of throwing out that goddamn pair, you keep stitching it up. Uselessly, you bring in different threads in pathetic attempts to keep things together. But no, it wont stay together, especially not when the wearer of said jeans will decide to do acrobats in them. Calm down sir, you have one pair, that too the pocket is dirty with ink stains from that stupid pen you borrowed from friend and lost the cap of.

What is the solution? you must rip it out. Take your scissors and cut out the bottom and make shorts. Or rip it out piece by piece and use the strips to convert it into a mat and walk all over it in dirty feet.

All I’m saying is- if it doesn’t grab your ass anymore, toss it away sis.

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10 points for 20 years

It is 14th November 2020. I have turned twenty years old. That’s two decades in this world. Has it been worth it? I’m not sure. In these two decades I have learnt things I never imagined I would. I have, in every sense of the word, been beaten to a pulp. But I’m writing this today, meaning I must have done something right, I’ve managed to keep myself alive. So I want to recollect it all– in my twentieth blog post!

  1. I took my first big decision, and didn’t regret it.

In 2018, vulnerable and gullible, I shifted from a bubble called Dubai to a big city called Bangalore. I still don’t know how I managed to pass that Entrance. But it was the only course I wrote an entrance for. I got in and never responded to those IIM and Jain emails again. I had chosen a course that would change my life- BA English, Journalism, Psychology.

I had wrestled my way through the food poisoning- that was Bangalore’s first gift to me, (thank you Plan b) and secured my admission in this college. After getting a small rap from the Registrar for a moment of indecisiveness, I made my way to the big gate that stood in front of the Science block. Suddenly a strong wind blew, and the tree I was passing under began to shed all it’s yellow leaves and flowers upon me. My mother said, “St. Joseph is blessing you.”

In 2018, vulnerable and gullible, armed with St. Joseph’s blessings

2. Survived Physical Abuse [Trigger Warning?]

This might be the first time I am owning up to it on a public platform.

At the age of 17 I was dating a 28 year old man I met in Dubai. Things were really bad, but I continued to stay, lugging the weight till Bangalore under the term ‘Long Distance.’ As much as I would say I cheated on him, I think it was more intense than that. I was not just cheating, I was deliberately putting myself in harm so that he would leave me, because he wasn’t allowing me to leave him. I had allowed my mind and body to be violated by another person. Upon confession, the lover beat me up on a public street in Dubai at 1AM. The distant Fruit juice center was lit up but everyone was deaf. He took my phone and kept it with him so I couldn’t run. We continued the relation. I cried on my birthday that came three days later. Ice and concealer became my best friends. I came back to Bangalore, I left him for good.

I keep this to remind myself why I left, because going back to a toxic ex is a thing.

3. Fought Tuberculosis, and won!

The big sickness.

I discovered a lump on my throat in November 2019. A few of my lymph nodes decided to swell after being infected. It was later diagnosed as latent Tuberculosis (yes, the non contagious one.) My 2020 began with me being discharged from the hospital after an operation with a sore throat, unable to move my neck, wondering why this was happening to me. Strict medication for 7 months, I also bid adieu to Alcohol and cigarettes (been sober for a year now.) Currently, I am healed, I am gaining weight, I have a scar on my neck that makes me look cooler than I am.

Discharged, Depressed, Wondering why me.

4. Scripted, Directed, Acted.

I really don’t know how I did it. I remember being so exhausted every night because my ill health was taking a toll on me.

On the day of the competition the minute I came on stage and delivered my first dialogue, my mind gave up on me. I couldn’t think of anything except how tired I was. I felt like I had let my team down. I didn’t forget my dialogues, but I didn’t do justice to the character either. Thankfully, my team had done a splendid job and they saved the day! I cried a lot after, I was so frustrated. It did not cheer me up when people I didn’t know from other colleges came to ask me for tips and advice. I still cried like a pathetic fool. I sat at the quadrangle of my college and stared at the big Banyan tree that was full of life. I was experiencing a burn out. My body refused to budge.

Looking back now, I really don’t know why I did that to myself. I had a wonderful team that helped me put up a very cute play, why was I expecting and comparing to Rangashankara when I was just starting out?

The wonderful cast of ‘Di, Medea!’- a Malayalam comedy adaptation of the Greek Tragedy Medea by Euripides. They were just perfect! I love them!

5. Lost some friends

They didn’t die or anything, we just stopped talking. It took a huge toll on me. I can never see them the same way ever again. Maybe it was for the best, I was not a good friend to them either. We had our moments, this is a welcome change.

No photo, for obvious reasons.

6. I gained friends for life!

I was now alone, often in the corner of my class with different books. I rediscovered the magic of reading. Books became my best friends!

I also made human friends. Kind people who understood me. I was able to get closer to other people. I met new people, rediscovered new people within some old people who I had left behind in Dubai. Safe to say, I now know who is with me in times of trouble. I have a wonderful support system I am ever so grateful for. Most importantly, I have a friend in myself (a very entertaining one if I may add.) I am good on my own.

never managed to fit all my friends in one frame, so I can’t photo this either , but you all know who you are, because you’re probably the only ones reading this

7. Got published in websites I’d never even dream of!

Agents of Ishq, Feminism In India, Mag 20/20, Aagaaz Magazine…. I even started a profile on Youth Ki Awaaz! The funniest part of this is my mother still doesn’t know. The first time I told her a website has agreed to publish something I’ve written she said there was no point of that. I will wait curiously for the day she finds out. My father was the only one who knew, he said it was good, it would help me. I had been reminded of why I needed my father in my life.

A dream come true!

8. Lost my Father

The fear that you grow up fearing. The thing that you know will happen but you never expect to happen. It happened. I see his photos and cry often. There exists now an uncomfortable mixture of grief, regret and loss, with pleasant memories to make everything better, and yet worse. My father was not the best man or husband, but he was a very loving, sensible father.

I think about the one time I came home during my vacation. As I was sitting on the sofa, he came and placed his shiny bald head on my lap. The bald head that all photographers complain of, because of the reflective glare on their otherwise excellent photos. I could see the faded scar on his head- a side effect of falling asleep as he was driving on the streets of Dubai. On my less risky lap, he slept peacefully, safe from harm, true to his name- like a baby. He said it was the best sleep he had in a long time, he said he always wanted to sleep like this on his wife’s lap but never could. Now, he was just glad he could on his daughter’s lap.

Papa, the anchor for my dreams.

9. I discovered the most amazing combination

My sister has been trying to develop the habit of reading. For this, she had chosen the book ‘French Women Don’t Get Fat’ by Mireille Guiliano. From her reading expeditions she introduced to me the combination of sugarless coffee with something sweet. I don’t know why, but it has made life seem so much more nicer. I look forward to going downstairs everyday at 5:30. I carefully watch the milk froth and rise, and quickly concoct a sugarless vanilla flavored coffee. I then settle down near a newspaper or a book, and begin having the time of my life as I bite into a cookie, some biscuits or on lucky days a big slice of dark chocolate cake.

Chocolate Coffee Cake
Representational image, mine does not look half as fancy. I am too busy enjoying to take a picture. Credits: Nespresso.com

10. Dr. Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar M.A., Ph. D (Columbia), D.Sc. (London), LL.D. (Columbia), D.Litt. (Osmania), Bar-at-Law (London)

I have saved the best for last. Nothing can top this. This lockdown, I fell in love. My life has got new purpose, new ambitions, new perspectives. I don’t know what to say, a ten thousand word paper was not enough for me to express even quarter of my love and appreciation for Babasaheb. I have so much more to write for him and about him. If only my fingers could move a little quicker, if only I didn’t have to move from my chair every once in a while.

The only anecdote I have right now is of the time I stood next to my father’s lifeless body at home and felt every part of me breaking. I could only pacify myself by wishing that Baba and papa would meet each other, and they would discuss the things I could never discuss with them.

I have been so scared to openly proclaim my love and admiration for Babasaheb because I felt I had no rights to do so. VJ ma’am was patient to listen to it all, and broke down each anxiety with love and patience. I have discovered Baba so late, but I am glad I discovered him within these two decades at least, and this is only because of the English Department of my college (remember, my first big great decision?)

He has filled me with a thirst for education, a determination to achieve everything I want- regardless of all that happens, Baba’s words have been my greatest comfort and guidance. The reason behind my strength.

I could stare at this amazing picture for days.

So,

I started this off very ambitiously, I wanted to do twenty points of good and bad, big and small. But it is already 11:23PM of the 13th of November, 2020, and that uneasy sickness has begun creeping in. I don’t want to write about birthdays, I find them very ominous, very scary. Each of these 10 points have enough detail in my mind to be a whole separate blog post. I couldn’t do justice to them. Maybe one day, I will be brave enough to write more about them. But that day is not today.

Today, I will simply appreciate myself for surviving all this, wiping the blood away and asking, “is that all?” I didn’t know I had this much strength in me. I know this is just a beginning. I have realized, more than anything, that strength is in each one of us, we just need to be pushed hard enough to exhibit it.

Whatever happens this year, I will own it. But for now, in this last teen, I shall revel in the pleasures of the chocolate cake in my fridge.

Say twent-eeeeeeeee
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To The Only Woman…

She told me she was getting married soon. She knew I would forget my sorrows in my happiness for her. Then she sent me her engagement photos.

I stared at his face, wondering what he was be like. More importantly, what would he treat her like? Did he really deserve her?

The first time I had taken notice of her was in a tiny alley between the neat little clumsy rows of chairs and tables. For a month we sat at either ends of our classroom, and today we stood face to face. One of us had to move to get to our corners, and it wasn’t going to be her.

My brain decided to freeze. Mutely mimicking her steps. She took a step towards me, and I took a step backwards, staring at her face. We kept looking into each others eyes, drawing and tracing our steps in the bench made alley of a school classroom. Eventually my knees gave way and I collapsed into a random seat, and she laughed as she walked back to her corner. I sighed.

By the next week, I strategically left my corner and slowly shifted into hers. I sat outside and she retained her corner. We spent hours talking about random things, gossiping about boys, Hindi serials, Korean drama, selfish teachers and enemies of mine that were friends of hers. She laughed easily, I became funny. It became our corner. We were smart, we were interesting, we had cool thoughts and echoing laughter, we became best friends.

I asked her if she was happy with this decision. She said I’d have to wait for two months and then ask again, she didn’t know yet. It was too soon to tell. I said okay. We spoke about boys being stupid and partnerships being 50-50.

I stared at his wide grinning face and wondered if he would ever sit with her like I did. Staring in awe at the way her eyes fixed upon a distant mumbling teacher as her shoulders hunched slightly. I wondered if he’d notice the way she pulls her thick step cut pony tail to the front when she turns towards you smilingly. She had just caught you staring.

Would he notice the lines on white long fingers that stretched abnormally back while she showed you her palms? or the tiny shivers that ran through her pointed fingers that touched your books as she was explaining to you Economics or Accountancy problems?

I know he’d notice her sharp face with the high cheek bones and pink lips, maybe one day as she sleeps without her glasses he will also notice her long eyelashes. But would he notice and appreciate the way she will tilt her head as she admiringly listens to your boring stories? or the way she folds her bottom lip as she pretends to think deeply about your boring stories?

Maybe not. Maybe yes. I’ll attend her marriage two years from now and observe, clutching the double heart locket she once gave me. Searching anxiously for stomach butterflies. Hopefully they won’t be fluttering in only mine and hers.

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Opinion: (Wo)Men in Power

The year 2018 proudly claimed much feministic progress when Aafreen Mody and Ankitha Hansda were elected as the President and Vice President of St. Joseph’s College (Autonomous), Bangalore. It was lauded as the first step. Fast forward to college student council elections for 2020, we have a majority of female office holders and one male as the Treasurer of the college. Students and teachers have been applauded for making such a progressive decision.

Only one question remains – How progressive is the newly elected female majority council?

Before any college candidate rises to power, there is one test that voters can use to determine their eligibility – How they lead their campaigning team.

So while our female candidates stood in front, being the face, who ran all the backhand operations? The men.

College elections, for the most part, tend to be very male oriented. Men take the decisions, form the strategies, even if it is a woman contesting. “Perhaps it’s just the things that they’re able to do, the things that they’re willing to do, you know, the men- crafty strategies, the tactics- these do play a significant role in any election, big or small, and it’s something that I’ve not seen any woman come up with. Perhaps it’s that they’ve not had the right amount of experience, but the women have done quite a bit too, to help out in campaigning, that shouldn’t be taken as insignificant.” Says Shruti Lal, 2020-21 President of the SJC Student council.

Angeline Katherina, also a current member of the Student council seems to agree with the view, “If I look at my election process, that statement is true in a way. Partially because most of the people I knew and who I thought could help me more than the others were predominantly male. Our elections require a lot of strategies and planning. Though I had made a lot of decisions…a lot of advice was given by a lot of my male friends, since they had participated in the elections before and knew how to go about it.”

The belief that women can’t do as much seems to have become a legitimate justification, which eventually makes ‘lack of experience’ seem like an accepted explanation. How will women get any experience, if the women who make it to the top don’t give them a chance? There is no glass ceiling here, because there seems to be no entry into the building to begin with, there is just a toxic loop of sorts.

“Women tend to assume that men do better solely because they’re more represented in the political front. But it’s far from true. Women should be given the opportunity to state their strategies. Unfortunately due to the bias against their capabilities, it is assumed that women wouldn’t want to help out or ‘there’s no point in asking help from someone who’s not active in the field’ and are shunned further” says Maha Aslam, who was actively involved in planning campaigns for Shruti Lal.

Few argue, that there was no such gender bias, that the current office bearers did seek advice from female office bearers of previous years who were still in Bangalore. Further conversation revealed that the questions asked were only regarding clothing, and the advice received was to go ‘traditional’ as it is more ‘appealing’.

Why is this issue not spoken of more often? Because it is systemic. Women working at the back end are always encouraged to come up with ideas for campaigning. This, to them, is empowerment enough. They are convinced that they have a voice. The disparity only discloses itself when they approach their candidate with their ideas and the reply heard is, “I will ask xyz (a senior male) and let you know.” There is some unspoken hierarchy, where even if the woman is given power, they prefer to run their decisions by a male. Whereas men for the most part, have complete authority and make their own decisions.

If the woman in power does not believe in her own authority, how will others acknowledge it? Once people are convinced that she is powerless, she will no longer command respect. Thus the vicious chain of, ‘women can’t be leaders’ restarts.

Over the years, our college has seen a handful of women, who ran their own campaigns, and a few who managed campaigns for others. Satyajeet Patra, a third year BA IES student, who takes active part in elections and helping candidates every year, tells me about Tejaswini, who was the General Secretary 2016-17 and the Vice President 2017-18. He also remembers Ashlin, who handled the campaign of two candidates in 2016-17. “In my 4 years of college I have seen a lot of female candidates and supporters who have played a major role in the elections” but is two or three women really that many? It is only a start.  

So is this success really the success of women? The women in power don’t believe in the power of women, so how will they rely on each other? How will they act together and pass unanimous decisions? Will they depend on the one man present?

Should the current union be lauded due to its female majority? Perhaps. But more than anything, this is proof that our alleged feminism needs further polishing- it cannot be restricted to mere tokenism.

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Paradise Lost Book 9- An ode to Aemelia Lanyer

**The following is my interpretation of a small portion from Paradise Lost Book 9 **

In this portion of John Milton’s Paradise Lost, we see Eve justifying her decision of choosing to eat the forbidden fruit.

What fear I then, rather what know to fear

Under this ignorance of good and evil,

Of God or death, of law or penalty?

Through these lines we see her questioning whether she needs to stay ignorant after all. She begins to question why she cannot acquire the knowledge of the world, of the many things that dictate life. She is aware that she is currently sleeping, unaware and ignorant. She is making here a conscious choice to educate herself.

Here grows the cure of all, this fruit divine,

Fair to the eye, inviting to the taste,

Of virtue to make wise: what hinders then

To reach, and feed at once both body and mind?

She realizes that the anecdote to her ignorance lies in this particular fruit. The fruit looks good, and she believes that it will do well to eat it too. Therefore she decides that she shall eat this fruit and feed her body and mind together.

What we see here, is simply a woman trying to become a thinking individual and amount to something.

In order to do this, she needs to break some rules. Simply because, to follow these rules would mean to willingly remain subordinate to a man who claims to know it all, but as we later see, probably doesn’t. 

She is actually staying true to her origin- i.e. the first woman, the original ‘mother’- Lillith. Though only meant to be known as Adam’s first wife and the mother of his children, she refused to allow that to be her only description. She wished to explore the arts and engage in critical thinking- something that ‘God’ did not appreciate. Hence, she was removed.

What I often wonder is, The Bible boasts of God being the source of all wisdom, all knowledge. So in essence, when Eve chose to eat the fruit, was she not seeking to go closer to God? Why is there a separation between God and knowledge- are they not really the same thing? God had maintained trees and fruits for the purpose of bettering a human’s life- so if he did not actually want them to consume it, why did he leave it in the human vicinity as a delicious looking fruit upon a tree? Keep in mind that this is a God who is all knowing, who never makes an error.

If the motive was to test their resistance to temptations- how can you know what is temptation and what is not, without having the knowledge of what is good and evil, i.e. without eating that fruit? By condemning this fruit eating, we are actually giving in to the true devil- ignorance.

The last part of this excerpt, is just a Hindi serial type of over dramatization that occurs to emphasize something ‘wrong.’

So saying, her rash hand in evil hour

Forth reaching to the fruit, she plucked, she ate:

Earth felt the wound, and Nature from her seat

Sighing through all her works gave signs of woe,

That all was lost.

From my perspective, all was gained at this point. To gain knowledge is to gain everything. It is freedom. Was the Garden of Eden really that amazing, or did Adam and Eve not know any better?

Maybe ‘God’ the capitalist was upset that he was now losing the free labor Adam and Eve were providing while living in the garden. ‘God’ was exploiting them, and now they had the knowledge to realize that they could aspire to be much, much more.

Image credits: Google Images
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Paradise Lost Book 4- The birth of revolution

**The following is my interpretation of a small portion of Paradise Lost Book 4**

In the excerpt I have taken, we see Adam talking to Eve about the garden. He is specifically emphasizing the forbidden Tree of Knowledge, informing Eve that they are not to eat from that tree since it would mean death to do so.

I wonder what it means to die upon eating the fruit of that tree of knowledge. It could have been the physical death- where they would either kill themselves out of guilt, or maybe God would kill them for having disobeyed them. Perhaps, they would choke on the fruit and die.

Or maybe it was a more metaphorical death. The death of one personality, and the awakening of something far greater.

What if we see it this way, Adam and Eve are plantation workers of Paradise Foods, run by ‘God’, who had spoken to Adam, and told him:

This one, this easy charge, of all the trees

In Paradise that bear delicious fruit

So various, not to taste that only Tree

Of Knowledge, planted by the Tree of Life,

He is telling Adam, though they will have control over all the trees they must not eat the fruit of this one particular tree. He does not specifically mention any consequences except ‘death.’ We can give this ambiguity of language the benefit of the doubt, and explore further.

So near grows death to life, whate’er death is,

Some dreadful thing no doubt; for well thou know’st

God hath pronounced it death to taste that Tree,

He is now simply parroting what God told him to Eve. He does not know the graveness of this punishment, he does not know what it means, and he has simply assumed from the tone in which God spoke that this is a grave mistake. We can see that God has successfully managed to instill in Adam the emotion of fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of disobedience. Adam then goes on to say:

The only sign of our obedience left

Among so many signs of power and rule

Conferred upon us, and dominion giv’n

Over all other creatures that possess

Earth, air, and sea.

He has blindly believed what God had said to him. He pledges allegiance to God as shown by his urge to display obedience. He is grateful to God for having given them- the poor workers- a whole garden, without realizing that the purpose of this Garden was to fulfill their needs. It was made for them. They are the people working on it, cultivating it to bear fruit with aid of nature.

So by eating this fruit that will provide them with knowledge and the ability to reason, it could mean the death of a silent surrendering laborer, and the birth of an educated revolutionist. This could have been then, what ‘God’ the capitalist bourgeois was trying to avoid.

We know that knowledge is true God. Therefore, Eve worshipping the tree of Knowledge, was Eve worshipping God. A true well-wishing God would want her people to liberate themselves physically, the only way that may be possible is if they would first liberate themselves mentally, which in this case would be by attaining knowledge through the forbidden fruit. 

Image credits: Google Images
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A Savarna House, in a Savarna world.

I live in a pretty big house in Kerala. I am very privileged. This house was bought after years of my fathers slavery in the Gulf. It was bought right before his oldest daughter began hunt for a groom. The biggest bedroom on the top floor of the house and the living room where guests sit have been inspired by Kerala boat houses. This should explain the wooden panels that surround it on all four sides- making it seem like a little wooden box. It also makes the room very dark, but is that the only darkness here?

***

There is another square building of two floors within the compounds of my house. The ground floor is a store room, and the top floor consists of a bed and an open window. It was made in an assumption that we would be rich enough for a driver. It has been used by many men- a Tamil man who had once come to help in the house, a distant cousin from my father’s village- because it was not appropriate for him to stay where two young unmarried girls live. At the corner of this building, sharing a wall with the walls of the compound, right at the back is a very tiny toilet. This is meant for any outsiders we are not related to and don’t hold in high regard (men especially), or the workers who come to pull out the weed in our garden, or for the help who comes to clean our house to change from her sari into a cleaning nightie, and then from nightie into sari before she leaves the house. The toilet was built initially due to the lack of planning during the house construction, because a spot for a common washroom was not even thought of in the main house.

We have two kitchens, like most houses in Kerala. Both are slapped at the back with terrible ventilation, which increases sweaty irritation in the summer. While one is decorated with white marble tiling and cupboards, the other has wooden cupboards and a granite counter. There are no walls in the second kitchen, except for the black grills that open out into our backyard garden- which has banana trees, coconut trees, mint leaves, tapioca, and other food plants.

The second, outside kitchen is where my mother cuts the meat- fish, beef, chicken- everything. It is also where the separate tea powder, glass with blue flower patterns and sugar is kept for the house help who comes twice a week. She can take the milk powder from the green sliding cabinet inside white marble kitchen. It is kept separate because “if we let them have too much, then they will climb on our heads.”

The workers in the garden do not come to the front door. We don’t need to tell them, they know it. Sometimes, if we don’t hear them calling from the back door, they will come to the front door, only to ask us to come to the back and pour out a glass of water. We will give them water, sometimes even tang, tea in the evenings with snacks….in disposable cups, or glass glasses. “Then you call them in, and sit with them and eat in the house next time, if you have such a big problem with it.”

Opposite our house there exists a tiny shop that has all necessary emergency supplies. Everyone in the area calls it the ‘Nair kada’ (shop) “Now because you are young you feel this way. When you grow up, you will realize, there is a lot of benefit in the name. You can’t say don’t use the name.”

So funny, when you’re a Savarna, you think everyone is mean, everyone is nasty, everyone will jump on your head, because that is exactly what we would do. Sigh.

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Poetry: To the spy behind my webcam

Every message that I sent

To read it he was hell bent.

Peering eyes behind a screen

Looming all over an anxious teen.

Every picture, every text

Always wondering, what was next?

My first internet friend

A personal, private fiend.

But I too knew some secret code

And so I slipped on incognito mode.

Sniggering, laughing, chuckling, howling

Finally I’d escape unnecessary scowling!

But all at once, I stopped and stared

At one big eye that glared and glared.

My first internet friend- a spy!

A powerful man scared of “why?”

There really seemed to be no way

To keep these nosy men at bay.

And so I picked up a thin white sheet

And cut it out to suit the feat.

Over the webcam with tape it stuck

Poor powerful man, so out of luck!

The peering eye over my screen,

Everything seen was now unseen.

The spy behind my webcam
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The first crack.

The first rhetorical question that they ask you will form the tiniest crack in your mind. But a crack, nevertheless. And a crack is all it takes.

Words don’t need too much space to enter, and so the tiniest words – the ifs, ands, buts, thes, ors, hows and whys will all slowly sneak themselves in, through that tiny crack. It will not hurt, so you will not realize them…the sneaks, they will lurk around, attaching themselves to every thought you have and every scene you watch.

It all happens then very suddenly. The sentences and scenes, attached to the trickled in words, become bigger and bigger. They keep expanding, multiplying, producing new thought, new sentences, new scenes. The tiniest crack deepens, widens, lengthens.

It sprouts new branches, it spreads all across your little mind.

The bigger words enter. They rush in to meet the other sentences, they attach themselves, reproduce, duplicate, shape shift, do a macarena, until your little mind can’t take it, and the lid blows off.

You now have, an open mind.

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In Sickness…

I first met him when he was admitted in the little hospital room buried deep in the corner of the long corridors of Baby Memorial Hospital. I stared at the 50 year old man curled up in fetus position, his bulging eyes stared back at me from the two dark hollows that spread underneath them.

He was terribly upset, and as soon as the caretaker left the room, his about to explode stomach and the brownish maroon hernia that had usurped his belly button, rose from the bed and slothed till the table.

“They don’t want to make it nicely for me, all kanjoos. Whose money it is? Mine only no?” He asked as he poured some milk from the thermos into the little white cup he had received as a complimentary gift from a Mc Donalds in Dubai, back when he didn’t have to visit the hospital almost every 2 weeks. The shaky spoon scooped up a large heap of Horlicks and drowned itself into the milk.

He slowly released the pink rubber band settled around the Marie biscuit, “You want one?”

“No, I ate big breakfast.”

He took one biscuit and handed me the packet, I tied it back as he inched towards his bed again, one swollen foot at a time.

“Wash that cup and keep, and you see that white bottle? bring that and come here.”

After a cup dripping with water was placed back on the table, I took the tiny bottle with the shiny transparent liquid.

“Massage my legs strongly, skin is itching because it is dry” he said as his fingers danced above his thigh, imitating a scratch. The tube that pierced the top of his hand danced along, and I felt my hand tighten into a fist at the sight.

As my palms skid across his legs drenched in coconut oil, I stared at his closing eyelids, he seemed awfully at peace for a man with a nagging wife and crumbling debts.