Thursday, May 26, 2011

Life and Death

Someone very close to me died last year. It was a time of intense grief, but we all got over it in whatever way we could. Now a year has passed and as I talk with the people left behind, it is yet another reaffirmation that life doesn't stop for anything. Only death stops.

In the death anniversary being celebrated (is that the right word for someone who died?) for this person, all I heard were accounts of people meeting after a long time, renewing old bonds - no real mention of the person who passed away. Maybe we all were avoiding that topic to avoid upsetting each other, but it struck me as sadly funny that the person who died was indeed gone - no antics or occupation left to report.

I guess, life's like that.

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Cricket and Ballet at Columbus Circle













It was an amazing sight to see around 20-30 Indians shouting themselves hoarse at the country's cricket world cup win in the middle of New York City. They had even brought with them dhols and a (mainly African American) brass band. Chants of "Indiaaaaa... India" did their mandatory rounds while at the same time the revelry was kept at a polite American level, with Indians mindful of their manners, unlike the unbridled frenzy the same people would have gotten into back home. However, even this (by Indian standards) mild celebration turned interesting when the cops came up to break the party (and probably figure out what the hell it was all about - the Super Bowl is over innit??). That's when it hit me - we have arrived. Indians have arrived and are forcing the Americans to learn what Cricket is.

In any case, jokes apart, all this education was in vain since the cops could't care less and asked the Indian folks to move the celebration along to somewhere else, which they obediently (if somewhat defiantly) did. One of the most striking scenes at the event was a ballet dancer and her partner trying to dance around the circle but giving up in good-natured resignation when confronted with the frenzied cricketing masses (okay - that is an exaggeration). But what a feeling - I will never forget it.

Friday, January 28, 2011

The De-Egyptization of India

We have come a long way from being a colony to the current democracy in India, which while not perfect, is starkly different from the so-called democracies like Singapore, Malaysia and, more aptly for today's news, Egypt. Sure, we have our share of corruption -- slimy ministers fattening themselves on taxpayer money -- but at least the somewhat regular balance of power among the various political parties of the country keeps the hope alive that things can change and that no one individual or family is running the show.

With the Gandhi family's recent resurgence, this could be jeopardized, but there is still hope that some sense will prevail and people with real expertise chosen to lead this huge country. So, here's to the hope that Rahul Gandhi is chosen as PM not because he pulls of publicity stunts like riding with the "common man" in Mumbai's local trains, but because he really has the political and economic savvy to lead India into an increasingly competitive future.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Yes, I need to be with someone to be happy

Yes, this is me, Scout, saying these lame things (I even thought up ridiculous lines like "Unleash yourself from the tyranny of me"--how gay is that??). I sound like the pseudo-guru from "Yes man," but I have decided that I am going to be OK with admitting to the world, and most importantly, myself, that I need someone other than myself to be happy.

And now that I am getting married, I have found that someone :) So yay me! Now waiting for comments from all my naysayer blogger friends... Bring it ON!

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Helplessly limbless

Been wanting to write about this for about a week now. I guess better late than never, huh?

I admit I am new in the city - Mumbai - the roller-coaster of a city this is. So everyday, I see this little girl with no upper limbs -- yes, no arms -- prostate on the ground, in the train station. And everyday, I pass by without dropping the expected coins. It is so surreal -- this limbless apathy I exhibit but do not really feel. I want to drop all my coins there, every single note I possess can go there -- but I guess I am too practical to actually do that. Somewhere in my mind I realize it is an act, the little girl, limbless though she may be, is part of a larger nexus out there to swindle me, but somehow, it galls me not to do something about it. Makes me feel guilty about my relatively privileged existence... I know it is ridiculous, but I cannot help it. But I refrain from giving money to the prostate girl and the other prostate, limbless boy at the station. There are just too many people who deserve sympathy and I just cannot give my sympathy to so many. I make a living and just want to be left alone to enjoy what I earn, and not feel guilty about the masses of limblessness around me...

Am I selfish? I guess I am. Not more than anyone out there though, I am sure.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Nothing changes

Nothing changes
We bruise ourselves in the same damn way
Over and over again.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Snakes on a plane (This makes me blue)

Hi folks, its been a while, eh?
Right, something had to shake me out of my stupor and it has.
I recently read about all these air hostesses being (literally) manhandled by disgusting male plane passengers in India. Even reading about it induced an indescribable feeling of bitterness and frustration in me, since all girls in India, if not the world, must definitely have experienced something akin to this.
Why do men like doing this to women? And why do women recoil from the slightest touch from a man they do not want it from?
It seems so trivial -- a nudge, a wink, a slight brush against the shoulder (or worse) -- really it cannot scar a girl forever. But why those 30 seconds of agony, helplessness, anger? And what about the men -- what is their joy from a pinch to the bottom et al? A momentary feeling of giddiness? Power over a woman? Machismo?
It makes me mad.