Sunday, September 22, 2013

Near and Far

When you have parents like mine, you don't need enemies.

Getting trapped in their psychological games isn't new to me but somehow each time I expect it to be different; maybe this time, things will have changed and they won't be quite as petty.

Intellectually I know... nothing will be different and yet emotionally, I am perpetually hoping... and then feeling crushed and betrayed when disappointment invariably shows up. Also this disappointment is so mammoth, it feels cruel to burden other people around me with it.

Dear Blog, you are sometimes all I have to speak to, to turn to, not because others won't listen or understand. But after being betrayed by my own consistently, there is no where / no one I am willing to take a chance with, except perhaps, with my counselors who are paid to keep my secrets and that is perhaps the beginning of my emotional abyss. 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The vanity of stealing

There is always that moment, when it happens, is incredulous.
'But how? Why?', your mind screams for answers and none are quite satisfactory or sometimes existent.
In my case, the event that brought about my mind being blown was the theft of my debit card number. I often used it as a credit card for online transactions and that, it seems, is where trouble began.

But the thief is silly, they make a huge purchase and my bank sends me an email because it is over and above the trigger for an email. The purchase is for $314.51 (approx. Rs 21,000 by current rates) and I begin to gasp in horror and shock at the email I see at 8 pm which tells me that. Logging into my bank account confirms it. Here is a purchase I never made, staring at me as a debit from my account, like an orphan someone left on your doorstep. You didn't ask for it, but somehow now it is your burden to bear. My wonderful husband snapped me out of my shock-stupor and suggested I call the bank and 'It will be fine!' which of course I had no reason to believe at that moment.

I call the bank and they assure me everything will be okay and immediately cancel my card so no further transactions will be made and direct me to the nearest branch to get a replacement the next day. Instant debit cards you say? After dealing with Indian banks, that sounds even more ridiculous. But I am curious as to what the thief purchased, the purchase says Shakeology and a google search leads me to the website called

I try calling them, but they are closed and there is nowhere I can leave a message. So I go back to understanding what this person tried to buy. Turns out, Shakeology is the company's line of health drinks. Shakes that look and taste like sweet milkshakes but are made of healthy stuff instead, so you drink shakes but don't get fat.

I was instantly reminded of a movie poster I had seen many months ago called 'Identity Thief' with the tagline 'She is having the time of his life'

See why? Although I don't think the thief who stole my card number was a cute chubby female, (it may have been a male) I had this image of a sad, fat thief, whose ultimate fantasy with a stolen credit card is to purchase two month's worth of chocolate flavored health shakes that tasted just like chocolate milkshake. How do I know it was chocolate milkshakes? I called the company the next day and told them that transaction was fraudulent. I didn't want them to lose money. They were also able to tell me the order was placed online from South Carolina(!!! which is about 2,500 miles away from me on the other coast) and that for further information, I would have to lodge a police complaint which I did not. I did not have the heart to go after a bumbling person with a flawed self-image. That is torture to live with anyway.

I got a new debit card and they are watching my account to see if there is any more fraudulent activity and last I logged in, they've even deleted the fraud transaction, almost like taking away a bad memory. I think I appreciate that. But this entire episode did leave me with the thought 'Oh America! Even your thieves are vain!'

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Fragments and shards

He dropped a crate of apple juice two days ago. It came crashing down and more than the juice on the beige carpet I was really concerned about the glass. Green spikes, shards, pieces strewn across the beige carpet...

Allegiances of the heart belong only to its discretion.

I know now I am going to live in this land, which was foreign not too long ago. He is responsible and love did not think of boundaries and geographies or passports. So here I will be in the near foreseeable future.
Conversations back home have been good. But today we spoke again about what they kept saying before I left, 'Don't come back'
Three words that would incense me, drive me up the wall... 'Why?' I would ask... just one word to contain all the anguish.

 'Why not?'
And the answer was always the same - the better life, the organization, the lack of overt corruption.
I left the country on what seemed to be the eve of a massive public uprising against corruption... a year and a half later, not much has changed. And it affects every one. At their core.
And I realize it is that core speaking out when I am told to 'Stay away'

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


Just watched 'Samantar', Amol Palekar's Marathi film with Sharmila Tagore

A film about unfinished lives and unfinished love. It appealed to the melancholy part of me. The need to seek liberation in some form at the end of a period of trials... so much poignancy, so much loss. A few years ago I would've been entangled and upset with a film like this. Now there is the twinge of sadness, and tears with the exhalation of a letting go. Yes it is much, yes it needs to be put to rest.

Samantar - parallel

She makes art and beauty from the earth that took everything away from him

Can death be a substitute for life? Can life and death be parallels?

Friday, January 27, 2012

Good luck Cicada

It was a warm day in California and UCLA was as usual at its bustling peak, lunch hour - the little time to chat, eat and race back to class.

The Court of Sciences, a huge open space surrounded by buildings of mathematical, engineering, chemistry and life sciences was swarming with people. And on a tree somewhere close, a cicada had begun buzzing his love song. His buzz reverberated through the Court of Sciences, somehow bouncing off the walls making it louder, almost enveloping the space with its hum. Calling out to summer and warmth and love.

I lifted my head to listen carefully and looked around at all these people out for lunch. Somehow I was the only one to have heard it.

That makes two of us Cicada.
Just like you, I don't know who is the only one listening to me... and whether that listening matters at all.

Sunday, January 15, 2012


Art is not what you have when you finish it.

Art is what you become while making it.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Good stuff

we are a strange species
we keep doubting good stuff

when bad stuff happens, we're like 'sure, bad stuff happens all the time'
but when good things happen, inner critic pops out instantly - better the happiness, more shrill the criticism

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Love. Art. Courage.

The more things seem different, the more they turn out to be the same.

I was pondering over the fact that many of us at different points in life, seem to be unable to comprehend pure love. It is a scary thought and when faced with it, we do what we do best. RUN!
What is it about pure love that so fascinates and repulses us at the same time? We yearn for it, we fantasize about it and when it appears, it is somehow too much to deal with.

I think art and love are born of the same emotion - passion and that is why we have such strong reactions to both. A tremendous attraction and an unbelievable revulsion at times. Art in all its forms and love in its colourful spectrum... just as we like a certain kind of art we seem to like a certain kind of love.
But if you really look at it - can you really segregate? Isn't art what it is? Aren't we just picking the art that doesn't shake our cores completely. Isn't that what made artists and writers dangerous? The fact that they touched a chord whose reverberations threatened to destroy all our imaginary frameworks? And isn't that what love does too? Resonates within us breaking up all sense of who we think we are. That is why people who are ready can melt into love, all frameworks promptly dissolved. But we are not talking about those right now.

Art and love are the same born of the fire of passion and are as unpredictable and vast as the oceans...both realms are only for the brave.

Routes, means, paths, roads

There are several ways to get to a place.
Darkness is not one of them.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Life after chat

A : Talk to you another day
me: bye

A is offline.

The green dot goes grey and has a little white x in it.
You leave the online world and leave a trail of emotions offline for me.