October 30, 2002

Chai

Approximately thirteen clockwise stirrings followed by a same number of the anti-clockwise variety is what it takes to adequately dissolve the two teaspoons of sugar required to sweeten my morning mug of tea. Three shavings of ginger and three seeds of cardamom forced open with an old coffee container spices up the concoction. The pleasures of life on your own is crude most of the times, but it is sweet and simple too.

An odd cobweb stands as a disinterested, mute witness to life progressing in a room marked by three wilting flowers stationed in the makeshift vase of an old vodka bottle in a dusty corner. From its standard issue of a mattress, a bucket and a duffel bag, life in general has acquired so many add-ons over the past four years, but the core remains the same. The bag is still there, the mattress was lost somewhere in the process of having lived out the bag in as many as six rat holes in an equal number of months. The bucket was lost to some holi-crazed hooligans, who found it ideal to pour coloured water over unsuspecting souls, when three of us impoverished students used to share a tiny room on the terrace of a four storied building.

To be honest, most of the times the script is really lousy. Well, other than for the odd day or so that you get to spend the way you want to spend it, which sort of mistakenly represents the whole drama. Otherwise you seem to be perpetually running out of either sugar, coffee powder, detergent or the gazillion tiny things that always manages to get exhausted the moment you just do not want it to. Of course, I should mention that there does not exist even a single moment of the other variety. Just when you breathe a sigh of relief that the latest round of bill payments are over, the calendar mockingly reminds you that it is the end of the month. Oh dear, here we go again.

Some run races only to win, to show-off their trophies and feel proud about it. Others like me run just for the simple yet beautiful satisfaction of having run it. Come to think of it, four years back I could not even get a train ticket reserved by myself. Yes, you can have the podium dear sir, but I am racing only with myself. We are just finishing lap 23 and my race is not over yet. Please do play a modest anthem for me when all the din dies down, for every lap is a victory for me, no matter how insignificant it might be for you.

Backed by hindsight and a mug of not-so-sweet tea inside me, I can reliably inform you that approximately thirteen stirrings with and against the ways of the clock is not enough, it has to be somewhere around eighteen to twenty, twenty five even. On second thoughts, you can add another teaspoon and a half of sugar too.

Then again, you might not like tea the way I make it.

October 28, 2002

Noname.post

In a valley you can choose to climb the heights at the risk of a possibly fatal fall or stick to the plains and lead a protected existence - you never fall, but you never taste the sweet wine of the heights either. It is amazing to live life as an open ended question, it is something like holding a fragile little feather in your hand and set it free to be played around by the elements. It is scary too, when you know the next five minutes as are certain as the next five years. All along the way the cup is half empty or full depending on the state of your mind and the sweet pleasure of justice awaits you at every corner, when you find yourselves at the receiving end of the stick every now and then. You have to trust your basic instinct towards survival and then fall free through time. Bliss.

Never judge a person by the happiness he shows, a better measure is always the sorrow he hides. How you go about it is the million dollar question. There are signs and signs everywhere, people are mazes with carefully concealed doors littering every dead end. Sometimes you find them unknowingly and you are happily let in, sometimes you barge in without an invitation only to be chased out with the strongest of denials.

After many a botched attempt, the city has finally managed to snare the elusive creature called as winter, three months of huddled pleasure awaits us now. In the thickening haze it is getting more and more difficult to make out one from the other, so we are slowing down. Slowing down in warming up to love hastening in running towards the arms of hate. Somewhere among all of that exists little lonely recesses in the mind, sheltered from the howling winds, where stolen moments of happiness are written in a language unknown to the outside world. Of course, I know you do not understand a word of all this. But as I said before, never use the oft used measures. A smile is often an expression of sorrow turned upside down. Go figure.

Words get tangled on your tongue
And you stumble on your feet
When you miss somebody
And everywhere you think you see them
Walking down the street
When you miss somebody
-- Wave Goodbye by Chris Cornell

October 23, 2002

Another list

Things that I love about life:

Books. What can I say about them other than that they have a life of their own. No feeling on earth compares to opening a new book in a bookstore and smelling a random open page. To touch and leaf through one is bliss and to be able to read is one of the greatest gift anyone could ever possess. Personally, I hate people who mistreat books in bookstores, who do not care enough to replace a book where it was found without messing around with it. Books are like infants, the way you treat them when they are young plays a huge part in how they shape up as they mature and grow older. Music shops and bookstores, sigh, these are the only two places which makes me regret the fact that I was not born the son of a millionaire. I can never have enough of either.

To have honestly believed as a kid that I was really flying an airplane, precariously perched on the high branch of a truncated guava tree in the yard, with all the great vocal sound effects to boot. To have run shirtless and barefoot all over the then unpaved colony roads, compound walls and terraces of petrified neighbours and return home late in the evening with the day's trophies of scraped and lost skin and flesh to the inevitable caning and verbal abuse sessions, only to do it all over again the following day.

To have loved senselessly for four years and to have been lucky enough to be loved back with the same or a better level of intensity even when the inevitability of the conclusion was clear from almost day one. To flip through old photographs and trace the outline of faces and moments with my finger and relive it all again, to catch that magical look in a pair of twinkling eyes and recount the days when you would have done almost anything in the name of love. To be held in a way for a few seconds in time when you wanted someone to press the freeze button on life's remote and rest there forever snug and comfortable in all the warmth that sustains life even today.

To be here today, when through all those yesterdays tomorrow was a nothing but a distant impossibility.

Things I hate about life:

It is one nasty addiction I cannot kick and I hate admitting that even with all the whining I am hooked big time onto it.

Yeah, I know I said tata and all that jazz less than 24 hours back. But in the end I have to admit I love doing this, to spill my gut out here and then have it appreciated or dissed by whoever happens to pass by. And I really do not think I need any other justification to keep doing it other than the fact that I love it. If I want to stash it someplace secret, I might as well keep it in my mind and not put it all down at all.

Those who want to freak out or shut me up in a loony bin can please help themselves and not read all this, for this what I am. Take it or leave it, there are no half measures on this ride. Those with a weak heart please step aside.

Thank you ladies and gentlemen, the freak show is back in town. Tickets are selling at a discount for the next few days and please do not feed, provoke or harm the animals, they are very unpredictable when they are dealt with in such a manner. You co-operation and words of encouragement are very much appreciated. Let us bring it on!

Last Laugh

It has been a while in the coming and I have gone over this time and time again. I have waited a few days to see if my mind too, like so many other things, would change, resulting in a blooper where I'd say "Oops I am back" and get back to it with a sheepish grin on my face. But, that is not to be and I have decided to call it quits and put the meticulously underthought ramblings to an end.

Over time this blog has become very much of a personal diary, with the stuff here mostly not really belonging to the public domain or serving any other tangible purpose than freaking people out or just plain scaring them. Maybe this will continue over at a private journal not seen by anyone else, or maybe I will not continue at all.

The bottom line being any damn thing you do should produce some kind of result - positive or negative. And that precisely is what has been lacking. There have just been pages and pages of mindless whining out here, but certain things never change, nor do I believe they ever will.

So, I guess taking all this elsewhere will at least stop scaring people. In other words, maybe its end will finally achieve something useful.

Ultimately, you have to let go of things and move on. Sounds familiar, right?. But it is kind of funny that my hands are trembling a bit as I key these words in. Will miss it a lot though and the whole lot of people who have encouraged me, most of whom I have had the pleasure of knowing through the blog. Thank you all, it was a pleasure having you here.

So that is it folks, the freak show is over, some other day some other time maybe.

Tata.

I have a dream, a fantasy
To help me through reality
And my destination makes it worth the while
Pushing through the darkness still another mile
-- I have a dream by ABBA

October 18, 2002

Damned

It is moments that qualify an otherwise lonely journey called as life for all of us. Moments that we cherish, moments we love, moments we hate. They all add up to a final balance sheet, the quality of which even the smartest of fudging can only mildly disguise but never hide. And if you have one like mine, where most entries are of the 'smile and I will be fine walking away' kinds, you are damned.

It is a bit confusing to how it can be described precisely. At times I feel like a bear being prodded and poked at in a street side baiting show, other times I feel like a journeyman fighter for whom the next fight could potentially be his last. You spend a lifetime fighting things for survival first and when you manage that, you create your own ghosts to fight, for without it you are no one.

I am weary and I am tired. It is a race of attrition that I am bound to lose, arms and limbs too weary to lift the weapons for one last time, the armor is tattered and punctured, waiting for the final blow of deliverance. All I have to meet it with is the most peaceful of the smiles I have ever smiled, this is one defeat I shall welcome with open arms.

It was not like this always. There used to be a time when I would see nice things and tell myself that this is just another phase, just another battle to survive, someday it could be mine too. Sadly it does not work out that way. In between loaned and stolen moments that never belong to you, the truth shines clear like the flash of light on the sword of deliverance, it is never meant to be. You belong to the road and the battlefield, they are your most loyal companions, you owe your allegiance to them.

There are lots of things I would like to believe in, that things better do exist in this world, but those are written in a language that does not define what I am. In other words, they are dishonest to my being. The moments you stay on after the battle, are not yours, your truth is one that holds only in the gore and violence. Beyond that, everything is a fallacy. It tempts but it never delivers.

You are just a cruel form of entertainment, cruel, but entertainment all the same. One that feeds on the cliched bloody scars that pass off for medals. How is anyone to differentiate when they all look the same, just memories covered by half-dead flesh and lacerated skin held together by drying blood.

You are just a grimy dim lamp, that lights up the darkness only to be outshoned and extinguished in the light of the day.

October 17, 2002

Welcome

Oh, I am back by the way. Not at all surprising, considering the fact that where else can I go?

The lines are really getting blurred now. Not that they were clear ever. Just that earlier it used to be a once-in-a while occurrence - the blurred vision that is. Now it is the norm. Clarity is a rainbow over the valley of dreams, sleep is elusive and I never liked the pills anyway.

Get the torches, the gasoline, a gag, the ropes and a few knives to boot. Choke, gag and cut this pagan to pieces. Douse him in the gasoline and set him alight, shut the door behind, plug your ears tight, do not look nor listen. It will all die down and merge with the silence of the peaceful night.

Life shall begin again, 6 am sharp tomorrow morning.

When in love with a blind man
You love on your own
To an occasional smile
You never know why but sometimes he smiles
And sometimes just lies there, so jealous
When In Love With A Blind Man by Tears For Fears

Pause

Goddammit. Took a left, when I should have taken a right. Stopped, when I should have run. Laughed when everyone was crying.

I know, this does not quite make any sense. Can say the same for me too.

Not quite here or anywhere for that matter. Not expected to return in a while.

October 12, 2002

Rites

Everyone had someone to cry over when the battle was over. Weary and tired I walked over to an unknown corpse, shed a few tears over it, for a moment held it close, said a few kind words and when the stench got to me, I walked on in search of other battles and never looked back.

Abundance is always within reach, if only one knows how to find it. - Isabel Allende in Paula.

October 10, 2002

Wishlist

If there were to be a last wish before these weary bones turn to ash, it would be to hold your face on my palm, lift it up to mine and look one last time in those eyes I have never seen and believe for good that it was all worth it.

It would be to feel the nape of your neck with the last of my breath and to caress your brow with the last of my touch and with one more, push back the untamed locks and believe all this was not in vain.

It would be to breathe the last in your arms, free from hurt, free from pain, free from understanding and misunderstanding, free from all the fights, richer for all the warmth and gladly poor for all the words, sights and sounds ever on offer in this world.

It would be to lose the self and regain the other.

It would be to make all of this go away and make it all beautiful again.

October 09, 2002

Dichotomy

Available for short entertainment stints: Twenty something, fast and smart talking, arrogant, decent listener-actor of a cocky bastard. An okay bargain.

Listed as missing: Twenty something, scared, vulnerable, insecure and gullible sucker for posterity. A bad investment.

Age-old wisdom says you should not move or attempt to ground your feet on the beach when the waves retreat, gradually washing away the sand from right underneath them. Let them slip away like the fine sand in an hourglass, one or many at a time, till there remains nothing. Bottom out, invert the fancy time machine and the drama begins all over again.

October 08, 2002

Zilch

It is a quiet Tuesday morning and even after twenty odd minutes of blankly staring at the monitor and thinking of what to write about, I cannot come up with much that has not been written about before. At the risk of sounding repetitive, a sentence is keyed in, read and deleted in an instant. There must surely be something to write about in this wide world. There surely must be something.

Armed with the magnifying glass of less-than-average observational powers and life's dictionary of cliches, I make another valiant attempt in search of the yet to be written great post. The trap is laid, the background score reaches a crescendo, the suspense is just killing. The moment arrives, the fingers hover mercilessly over the keys for the final push.

Zilch.

This one just refuses to start. No point in flogging a dead post.

To be very honest, somewhere along the way the whole concept of blogging was lost on me. Frankly, I do not really care whether I am part of a community or not, or even where this all belong, the voice of the ordinary and the rest of the jazz. This, like I said before, is just a conversation between me, myself and I, in my various shades and moods (aka a meme blog). But, it is a very important conversation to me, for it plays a great part in fitting things into a temporary working perspective. Anything which achieves that end for me is just too valuable and that is precisely what drives the urge to paste some rubbish on this yucky yellow coloured wall as often as I can.

That is also the main reason why you would not find any great commentary or interesting links or discussions here. At various points in time during the existence of this blog it has been a bit of all those and something that was instantly noticeable was there are million people out there who do it much better than I can. So nonsensical ramblings here are what serves my time spent on this best.

The only casualty in all this is comprehension. Whatever that is plastered on these walls are mostly very personal things glossed and gloated over with different layers of very complicated or plain insane sounding stuff. Unless you are someone who knows me pretty closely, the odds are that it will make no sense to you, for the context is most often not universal and same things evoke different reactions in each of us. So, even if I am to put it all out here in plain language, at the most a debate is what will result and that is not what I really want. Then what do I really want? Well, that is a totally different story altogether. We will save it for a rainy day.

The grey area that surfaces then is the comments. If a debate or discussion is not the aim then why is the comment box there? It is nothing but raw fodder for the ego or a nice distraction and senseless banter has always been one of my favourites among all forms of idle pastime. There is something infinitely interesting about the little tit-bits of conversations that goes on in these little windows. Somehow, in most cases I find the conversations out there more interesting than the actual post in itself.

Again I am at a loss for what more to write. So let me stop this merciless assault on your patience when I can. Thank you for your kind and patient listening. It was a pleasure to have you here.

So where were we Codey?

Post and Publish.

October 06, 2002

Tunes

Lingering taste of coffee from a finger that just traced the outline of a blue coffee mug's neck and the whiff of an abstract conversation that it kills with a swift application on the lips, words are a burden to the cause today.

In the warmth of an embrace we set out to chase our ghosts, put our best feet forward, put the most powerful arms up ahead and the assault is finally on. Victory or defeat is really inconsequential, for we are just fighting scarecrows on a plateau where armies of the dark past and the unknown future clash with each other with a deafening roar. This is just a reprise, a tribute, the real war was lost, the real war was lost long back.

It is in the hollowness of the bones the screams of dead souls echo loud and terrifying, once the marrow of life is fast removed with each successive defeat. It is in this hollowness that the darkness in a twinkling eye reside and this is the hollowness that we struggle to disembrace.

It is in this hollowness that your words are wasted on an inattentive me. It is in this hollowness that I still cannot remember the face that was just a breath away, nor recollect the warmth in whose pale yet reassuring light that I engaged in yet another unwelcome tryst with the ghosts.

In the end, it is just the caffeine and a mysterious tune that the cold wind weaving its way mercilessly through the hollow bones that remains.

October 03, 2002

Measures

Time is often like old newspapers, they pile up in your backyard -- in all odd figures, shapes and sizes. For a while you can recollect a few of the noteworthy editions. The really good ones find a home in the scrapbook of memories. The same goes for the bad ones too. The rest you sell off to make space for the new. The transaction almost never justifies the expenditure involved in their procurement.

Put together the fading prints, the bloated ink and a random set of tattered moth-eaten sheets, then you get quite a story to read. Some of them make sense, perfect grammar, structure in idea and construction; others simply miss the bus, they remain as broken and unfinished sentences, tales that have no beginning or no end, text that overlap, plots that intertwine and the odd bright exploding spark in an otherwise dying bonfire. Incomplete and inconsequential, dump it.

Yet another rickety boat sets sail towards the unseen land of bliss beyond the distant horizon. The eyes struggle to play catch up; till they become specks and soon invisible specks on the speck like boat; till they can stop seeing the fake smile that you push along with the receding waves that take the boat further and further away from you towards the destination. Another set of pages are consigned to the pile.

We are the children of a lesser God. We are never the ones to leave by the light of the day. We always see people off. We walk away only under the cover of the dark. We are never destined for good byes.

We are the children of a lesser God. A God who is seen only in the darkness of a twinkling eye.

October 01, 2002

Thank you!

There is a wide grin on my face, there is a lightness in my step, I do not have the world to conquer and there are no worries that cannot wait. Yes, for a very pleasant change, I am happy.

Being as rare as this feeling is, I should take some time off to count my blessings, which comes in the form a handful of people I love and and get loved by them too without asking for it. These people have the fortune/misfortune of putting up with my wild, varied and trying ways, tantrums and quirky behaviour and since they are not family it says a lot more than what can actually be ever said. And since I know you well, you guys should know who you are :)

So what has changed? Nothing much. No I have not turned a millionaire overnight, I did not get a double promotion, my life is no less messier than what it was a few days back and I am still the sulky, morose chap you met around the corner yesterday. The trick is spending the kind of time I want to spend with my blessings, to abuse them, to shake them as hard as possible, to throw them as far as you can and still have them come back like a well shaped boomerang. That makes life worth living, be it even once in a while.

Yes, I know it can all change in the next five minutes when I shall go back to writing dark fluent prose full of sullen dark analogies and glum prognosis on the way it is going to turn out or the way it already is. It does more justice to my feelings than what I can ever do in a happy state of mind. But as far as I am concerned, all those fancy words can go to hell for this is where I love and long to be.

So, let me live it up when it lasts folks, flap these tiny wings and fly these little heights of mine till I run out of gas and come down like a tail feather falling earthwards in an uncontrolled spin.

Catch me when I fall!

I feel fine and I feel good
I'm feeling like I never should
Whenever I get this way
I just don't know what to say
-- Bizarre Love Triangle by Frente