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Thursday, June 26, 2008

i am indispensable

to one person at least.
and i realised that -- or rather, it hit me real hard -- after my last biz trip.
i came back home with a bagful of goodies for her. as excited as she was by those, she was totally thrilled to see me. and it was the small, everyday things that she missed me desperately for. things that give a structure and definition to her day.
snacks in her box, two neat pig tails, checking her homework, making sure her stationery was packed, calling her friends over to play, allowing her to sleep the whole night in the crook of my arm, and most important of all... listening to her talk about her day at school and with friends. nearly a week after my return, she still has not totally filled me in on the days i missed. she is updating me one day at a time.
not to take credit away from R. He is a wonderful father... and i know of only one other who does as well as him: P.
i can't but feel a little gleeful that despite having him around, she still thought my presence was so indispensable to her.
what really drove the message in was when I told a friend, on the phone, that O was fine when i wasn't around, she immediately interrupted me and said: "Of course I was not fine. How can I be? You were not here."
as much as i would like to put this down to my superior maternal skills... i know it's just a thing about mothers.
that 9 years after moving away from home and despite being pigheaded for much of my life, my mother is the only one who can really influence me...

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

i don't own a gun...

and it's fortunate. given my state of mind today, i may just go on a spree, trigger unhappy et al.
and i swear, this is my last post for the day.
unless someone else pisses me off real bad.

and then there are some...

like here... don't get me wrong. i am no fan of the US, but I don't mind the americans. i find them rather nice.
so here is a people who say there are different paths and methods to salvation. you are not damned if you choose to embrace a piece of stone, or cry over the crucifix.
then there are the others... it's their way or the highway. and if you are not of their belief, then well, too bad, you deserve to die a real painful death.
i am ANGRY!

this is qatar. and i am bloody fed up!

Check THIS out.
today's headline. why don't they just pass a law making it mandatory for expatriates (specifically asian expats) to walk around in shackles, and abandon all relationships back home?
what are we to these effing a'O'? just machines who work with neither feelings nor rights?
they talk about the rights of sponsors... rights of the billionaire human rights violators? is there no justice in this world? is it enough if they are born as rabid rats in their next janam? what about now?
i am beyond cribbing, and now at the point of breaking... i am so angry, upset... need to flee this place.
if this weren't bad enough, read this and this.
why am i still here? why? why? why?!

Monday, June 23, 2008

press del

and heave a sigh of relief... when you delete a person from your contacts and block them from chats, do they really cease to exist?
and if this blog vanishes, would my thoughts too?

Sunday, June 22, 2008

school lunches

what do they really tell about the carrier? as in the person, not the container...

i always carried one box wonders, mixed rice with a sprinkling of veggies, chappatis rolled with veggies, idli or dosai smeared with podi... and sometimes leftover prawn or chicken curry mixed into rice (before i turned veg).

and then i would see friends who carried 2 or 3 storeyed tiffin boxes. veggies in one, curd in another, rice or rotis in yet another... i assumed their mothers just cared more... cared enough to load them with boxes of food. where as mine and a few others slammed bread and likes into one plastic dubba, and were done with their maternal duties.

so when one proud owner of multi-storeyed tiffin box invited us home, we were expecting a full spread of goodies.

we were not to be disappointed... the food was there. prepared and served by maids exported from some remote andhra village. the mother was away somewhere, and we heard the father is around only some times, and the rest of the inhabitants of the house -- the uncles and aunts -- were not really on talking terms with each other. but who cared right? everytime you wanted some yummy pakoda, you just had to call mani or ganga or whoever it was on duty, and voila, it materialised on the plate.

at home, pakodas were for weekends. and if you begged real bad, you would be whacked for making a nuisance of yourself.

but this friend quite enjoyed eating at my place. but to give my mum her due, it was only in packing the box that she sought the short cut. otherwise a table of dishes were a norm. and she would embarass me by hovering around us ladling out second servings of boring rasam and podalanga poriyal.

many many years later, married and with kids, when i met this friend, she said those were the best meals she had tasted. and that though she has a cook, she packs her son's food, and serves him herself, while at home.

there is something to be said about boring, mundane details of life... it can be romanticised after a bit of pickling and ageing.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


i love airports. don't really mind long transits etc... because each airport seems rather unique. that is, the people passing through it. so waiting to see what changi has to offer morrow when i leave.
some airports that are rather unique...
in doha, people are always looking bored and irritable. maybe just my biases colouring my view... still, my blog, my opinions. though look tired, maybe because most of them are transit passengers. the rest are looking kind of happy to leave.
dubai is an interesting mix. there are people looking expectant, maybe first job in another gulf destination, so they are transiting. some look rather swipe happy, having shopped like crazy. then you will find the relieved lookings ones, just happy to go back home. and the ones who already dread coming back to their insufferable jobs.
and not to mention, the ones who looks so surprised and fingers-crossed happy, because they know they wouldn't have the jobs they do in their own country, either because they are not qualified enough or because their light skin tone is not a cv-booster.
in colombo, the lankans are on cloud nine already to be getting out. the others are mumbling prayers and hoping they make a safe flight out.
in kenya, it's like the chennai central...
in botswana, hard to figure about other passengers, as there wasn't an airport building to speak off about 8 years ago. main gate, check in counter, runway...
chennai. EVERYONE seems to be teary-eyed or sad about leaving. maybe bias again. who cares. but even the geek going to harvard on full aid, looks sad to be leaving madras.
...any other airport that strikes you as exceptionally interesting.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

where are the boundaries?

i was attending a couple of weddings last month, and absolute strangers and stranger relatives, came up to me and commented on how fat i looked. how i looked older than my eldest sister who is 13 years my senior.
and they were so gleeful to point out my weight problems... like i needed reminding. who the eff goes shopping for me, and do i look like i don't own a mirror?
people -- mainly in india and bangladesh -- know no boundaries. if they remotely know your third cousin's neighbour's cat's one night stand, they feel they have the right to comment on you.
the temptation is strong to tell the one who called me a heavy weight champion that sagging bra straps are not particularly appealing, neither are hawai chappals with kanjeevaram silks. i maybe fat, but at least i have style!
and then i want to tell that idiot -- who squeezed various parts of my body to illustrate her comments -- that if you have to colour your hair, make sure the dye doesn't leave a trail behind your ear and down your neck!
what about the one who looks about 15months pregnant, though the rest of her looks anorexic? should i ask her when she is going to birth the calf?
there is so much to be said about so many people -- mean, nasty, honest truth. but that's when your sense of reasoning is supposed to kick in. where you weigh your words and draw the line. does my big mouth and self-important opinions make a difference to the world? no? then zip it!

from teesu...

My take on this:

If you get something out of a vending machine, it's most likely to be: Water
A word you sometimes catch yourself misspelling: too many...
You least want people to see you as: Fat (actually, it's overbearing...)
You're a little scared of: Lizards
The least attractive thing you do in your sleep: Snore
The number of contacts in your cell phone: 150+
How many of them are restaurants: 1
You lose your cool when someone: shows-off
When you go to the drugstore, you often can't leave without buying: face wash
Your dance moves can best be described as: desperate
The majority of your underwear is: Cotton
Something you eat even though you hate how bad it is for you: cashewnuts
You think you're really not a great: wife
How much cash is in your wallet right now: sing$500
The majority of your shoes are this color: brown
You don't think you'll ever be able to get rid of your: boobs
If your breath is bad, it's most likely because you had: junk
You feel embarrassed when you: fart
The last public place where you used the restroom: expo centre
Something you don't like to debate in mixed company: NA (i have no qualms)
You don't think you can pull off wearing: garter belts
Something you own entirely too much of: books
Someone you would love to see in concert who might bring down your street cred: mj
The last thing that you spilled on yourself: **censored**
If you were on a reality show, the producers would likely portray/characterize you as the: also-ran

my 10 from here

Ten Literary Characters I Would Totally Make Out With If I Were Single and They Were Real (check out were i got it from too...)
just couldn't resist this, so invited myself to the tag. I copy a ps too... if i've selected a woman then it's assuming i am single and male. if i've selected an animal, it's assuming i am one... in no particular order:

1. Heathcliff. Not the cat. From Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte. Just so wonderfully dark and sensual!
2. Rhett Butler from Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell.
3. Scarlett from the same.
4. Simba from Lion King.
5. Snape from Harry Potter by J K Rowling. I'd be his Lily! Really... I love Snape.
6. Kafka. From Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami. A girl sometimes needs that kind of weirdness.
7. Maan from A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth.
8. Father Ralph de Bricassart from Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough.
9. Vandiyathevan from Ponniyin Selvan by Kalki. Funny, brave, and apparently very handsome.
10. Karna from Mahabharatham.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

1. you own what happened to you -- Anne Lamott

I have just begun reading bird by bird by Anne Lamott. and it's about writing.
to start writing, write about everything, grade school, birthdays etc etc...
so i am taking the cue from there
and my first bits

Class 1, first day in school. my sister and cousin admit me and take me to class. Mrs Pilackal is the teacher. A stern old lady whose perfectly spun bun rivalled only that of Mrs Pereira (maths teacher for the older classes).
Mrs Pilackal was my first taste of how scary teachers could be. Yet I don't remember being particularly distraught at school. That would come later, with my first exposure to teachers who were cruel -- that story for another day.
One other memory from that class -- which opened out to a long veranda, with wire mesh, which looked out to the street behind the school -- is how my friends and i would play the piano on the desk. we would do it tirelessly, day after day. why? beats me. but it probably is the reason i have wobbly knuckles.
That's where I made my first friendship -- which lasted many many years... we are in touch, but not quite friends.
Grade 1 is also when I realised that uniforms desperately fail the very reason they are imposed. It is meant to ensure that everyone looks and feels the same. No Levi's for one, and Lulu for another.
But what uniforms do is show up how the same piece of fabric can look smart on one, dishevelled on another, glamorous on yet another, and downright crazy on someone else.

Take the cue: what do you remember about your Grade 1. write it down. here. on your blog. on a piece of paper...


those who are supremely unaffected by money, are supremely endowed.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

a few reasons why i love my job...

1. if i am reading a magazine at work, i am actually doing my job
2. ditto if it's a novel... i could be reviewing!
3. ditto for a movie...
4. meeting people for brunch/coffee/lunch is my job. networking rules!
5. being rude or blunt can be construed as creative liberty! uh-hmm!!
6. i can wear jeans to work, and even to a meeting...
to be continued...