Picket Fences

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Mute it man

It happened when I was at my friends’ place watching “Hum Aap ke Hi Kaun” she heard the phone ring and muted the TV and went on a long hackneyed conversation, which bored me. I could neither watch the movie nor eavesdrop.Then suddenly my eyes got glued to the screen...there was this Sali ki song playing with titles. "Sister-in-law...your veil in green... is splitting my mind in two halves..." since I could hear nothing, I saw this idiot Salman Khan winking at Sali in the movie...and Sali ki nakhre tho dekho!, She was rolling her eyes with hands on her hips...and then comes moti ...Reema lagoo smiling and acting imbecile, the title goes…"you are taking my silhouette with you from my home...etc”...and the bald man Anupam kher throws a moronic smile, acts very friendly to other grotesque jell haired male species in chuddydar and Sherwani...and the title goes.” you have to respect you father-in-law if you want his inheritance...” mind u, this is a very colloquial translation from Hindi to English for this song playing in the background…. As this progressed I was amused to no end and Ms Madhuriji appears from nowhere, her back fully in view with a garish purple blouse and sadi...What do I see? She winks at Salman, arre… and Salman makes a flipflop...and almost faints...while Madhuri with her sexiest smile shoves her butt in to his face and gyrates ...and the song goes." gimme money… and take me home...”repeated twice...this was more fun than I had thought… Salman ki mother enters “moti lagoo” and tries a few difficult moves around salman and salman wakes up... dang!Madhuri and salman dance without words...his hands and legs going in circular and anticlockwise and in perpendicular motion, her eyes and face going through one mood to another like of a clown in the circus, this is hilarious; I thought why do they pay to watch these movies? Mute them man…!I decided to have some more fun and switched channels on Zee TV there was Hum dil de chuke Sanam...again Salman and Aish…This time Salman was farting through out the movie but god forbid I didn’t get to hear any of it…and …I switched to “Hum aap ke hain kaun”…and the translated title was “ what are you to me?”And Madhuriji was sowing wild oats in brown chania choli…Salman the idiot was asking her...”why aren’t you in my heart? So what are you to me’?She was the personified feline cat…purring at him softly and enticing him with her belly shake...she said “ what am I to you? Why do you ask?” her eyes slightly slanted to see if there were other suitors beyond him…Salman looks alarmed, he springs in to a series of hip hop steps and madhuriji as if unwillingly follows him, the subtitle goes...”what am I to you...what am I to you...?This was like the mating dance of peacocks...the male in all its glorious bright feathers dancing around the female…Madhrijji ke Jhatke …takes me to higher conciousness…I switched to Amitabh’s SilSila...Amitabh was vying for Rekha, she, with her large kohled eyes was staring intently in to his eyes...and the subtitle goes.” I saw a dream in your eyes...O...what confusion. “I was by then giggling and off the sofa and on the floor. My friend thought I had completely lost my brain...she kept the phone down immediately and came to ask me as to what was the matter with me…and …on the screen Amitabh is walking slowly in to the Tulip garden with Rekha in tow...and the song goes.” where do I seek thee in the garden of Eden...you the forbidden fruit…” I turned to my friend and she was promptly rolling on the floor. Dostho.... next time Mute your TV while watching Hindi movies…u never know. *Wink

Gym desi Ishtyle

After almost three years I stepped inside a Gym...I have been sitting on my ass and speculating world's problems..and chicken stew..and I never knew when i grew obese on chat papdi and sambhar.
The first day in Gym it took me twenty minutes to get used to the rhythm of the machine i went huff and puff on the handles. The climber went rolling...i peddled the bikes lifted few spirited weights..and headed to the dance gym...wow..there were few like me who had left their belly floating in midair...we took the step stools and the spanish music was on..one two ..three four..the lissome instructor with tight endowments..stood infront of me like a jet propelled to move..she started moving her legs to the music...her young and slim body swayed in calculated steps.. to my horror I noticed a wide mirror reflecting me...do I look like this?..Was it me or a bunch of sweet potatoes put together...? There stood a massive tall man oozing out in all directions...and all thses days I thought my little mirror at home was joking? are u kidding?
then the instructor said common! ..let's begin...! and there we went hop drop..hop -drp on the stool...the mirror showed various verstions of me in a lousy strech pant and a short top...tch..i tried to hide...and grew more conscious of what others are looking at..but then to my right i saw a fat man obliviouly enjoying the music and the beat..well he wasn't looking at the mirror... why should I ...so ..i went tippity tippity ta...one two three four...look at the jiggle..two three four- right..i could't help notice my bumpy thighs...two three four six-left!...I noticed my fat arms ya yah...one two three four..my body just wouldn't move faster..it's like I have a load of laundry on my knees...I started sweating profusely...the music began to blare in my head...i felt a gush of hot blood in my ears and neck...can't do it..can't do it.....the fat man is still going good...
A blanket of black overcame my senses...i fell flat on the ground...;looking at the Big fans..birthday balloons stuck on the ceilings....and ..i saw many strange faces around me...and hazed out..
when i woke up..I was still in the same room...this time everyone was fussing around me..."are u all right"
"what the heck..im okay"...so shall we start again...? and the dance class began..this time it was Soca....Soca has this fast beat and a nice mumbo speed ...very sensuous to my taste...but this time I am not looking at the mirror..
I love it the atmosphere is charged...a few of them are dancers themselves and are really kicking it up..im amazed at their moves...their spirit and their groove...even an old man at 60 ..is jiving to the lyrics...it was just like watching Greece 11 in a cinema hall...I have to let go..stop thinking about all the corners of my body..and the distorted parts...do they bother...and ..i stepped in..doing what i thought was good..., I ..kept my feet tapping and twidling and bouncing.,playing few tricks on my heavy bottom..the rhythm caught on with my big bones...and my body felt like a besotted rock star....and then it was no looking back...all through the class I for got how I looked in reality..:).
next part is awaited...;)

pearles of wisdom by Pintu and Tinku

Mommy , being a teenager is dangerous!” said Tinku.. Mommy was displeased “why do you think so raja?” “u know it is dangerous” Tinku’s delicate 8 year old brain couldn’t define dangers, he was contemplating.. Mommy thought Pintu being the eldest would be a better candidate for the equation…”Pintu why do you think being a teenager is dangerous”
(Mommy is actually on the edge of curiosity.) Pintu thought for a while and confidently said “ Coz, when you are a teenager you start getting pimples and people start teasing you “ Tinku being the thoughtful said, “ Mommy when you are a teenager you start getting these attitudes you know?” …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. Name the twenty things… Okay –now lets play this game, mommy will think of something and we guess with our 20 questions as to what it is. Is it a thing? “No” Is it a bird? : Nah” Does it breath? “Yeah” Does it live in Antarctica? “Sometimes” Is it an amphibian? No a Homosepian (Mommy gives a teasing smile) Mom wots that! “Human being” Pintu the smarty pant goes…”oh mom human beings are animals too” Tinku the wise man …ponders, “ ya sometimes they are” …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… Dad sitting in a Pizza parlor grinds his teeth and growls .. “ You act like an old man… look at you , look at your face” Tinku the funny little man is offended… “But dad I am not old, I am shorter than you “ His lips pout in a mute snarl..

Love

On the banks of a River,he kissed me gently, it was as if a soft breeze had passed my lips…
We had walked hands in hands many days on the green grass,watching the blue skies, swearing our love forever... ,Sanjay had visited me exactly twice on the campus, while he was travelling towards Ooty with his girl friend, though at that time I did not know that little secret of his.
I had pressed him for a commitment.…little did I know that what I really meant was that I wanted him to make love to me.
And in that moment of its very birth, our love would begin to die a slow death…
For my predicament would terrify Sanjay, he would begin to calculate my value in the Indian marriage market, he would begin to wonder whether I was an asset to him or a liability. I would discover during succeeding months that Sanjay was a rich boy who was spoilt and was on marijuana rehabilitation, that his mother had schizophrenia, and that he was a fickle person who lacked conviction of character.
So despondent that I would be at this knowledge…. That I would leave the campus without completing my post graduation, not having to see him again, breaking all contacts with him, he would follow me to my hometown on several occasions to offer me…not marriage, but a sordid rendezvous in a seedy motel inhabited by prostitutes, and I would accompany him there only to back out at the last moment. Eventually…I would agree to an arranged marriage…with a man I would never love…
But forever I would remember that afternoon on the banks of a river…and the possibility of love…

NOTE:

A Column called what is love inspired me- By Sarita Sarvate…I loved her style so with a little of my own fiction thrown in…I have presented this little piece on Valentine’s Day…hope u guys will enjoy it.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Henna on Her Hands


The night had fallen in to a deep slumber…He took her hands in his. The wheels of the car which was carrying them…had taken speed…as if in a drunken might…

She looked at him…searched for a faint hint of familiarity…her henna hand shivered in his…she whispered in faint breath “where are we going”?

He looked at her with a smirk…”you will know”

But where is he taking her? Morning it was so much chaos she had not seen his face properly…amidst all the rituals and relatives they were mere puppets. …The purohit had directed him to tie a yellow thread around her neck…beyond the loud Nadaswaram they had promised and pledged each other’s lives in a vow.

She had courted him for a week before engagement…. on their first date in the Cinema hall he was all over her like a mad dog…and it was hard for her to figure out how a guy who is so totally unknown to her make way in to her body like her used clothes…?

Should she resist him? She did not know … she just didn’t want him to get turned off by her…she froze…Like a martini bottle in the freezer, damp cold inside, hot outside…her soul searched the far-flung corners of her memories…her …brain failed to recognize the familiarity…of a hand…so alien wandering inside the folds of her sari…she sat through the three hours of ordeal…as if set on hell’s fire…

Now…the car is hurtling in to devious dark corners of the city, she is alone with him…

He sounds nice…. he is nice, he is holding her hands…the car stops in front of a white looming luminous building…he opens the door for her, walks her in to the 5 star hotel

She is confused- where is he taking me tonight…?

He opens a suit and leads her inside…the bed is strewn with flowers…jasmine, roses…streaks petals of flowers making subtle hearts in the center…

He says,…”wait a minute I’ll be back”

For her things are falling in place…but isn’t it too soon…she cannot think properly…

Is it happening? Like in movies?

Whole morning they had starved until Muhurat and he would be gone in another week…

Her eyes …slowly closed…in sleep and tiered sweet anticipations…few minutes later she heard the door shut…and opened her eyes to him clicking the pictures of the bed in different angles…she was fear stricken…this was nothing like she had seen in the movies…usually the groom came and kissed the bride first and then held the milk glass

To her mouth…she scrambled to look for milk there was nothing there…

Well…what next…? He looked at her and smiled …she dreamily pouted her lips… next thing she knew the lights were off, someone had pounced on her, ripping her clothes off his breath against her skin heavy and rancid…his hands again rustling inside her sari like a hungry snake…

Out side the hallway …bellboy heard a scream so loud that it curdled his blood…he stood there for a while … and then…. slowly slipped in to the kitchen.

Next day…the other next day it was a repetition of the same night…she, by then got used to the face of this man silently…slipping in to her bed, this strange man who lay next to without shorts…on a crimson… bed…he was quiet and mysterious… and … was just becoming this huge China wall inside her mind…magnanimous…never ending and…. ancient…

He was drunk every night- it was intoxicating his lust. Every day she started staring at the mirror…her eyes, lips…her pale skin…arched brows …they just looked so perfect.

She tried to ward off her sickening thoughts which would often make her nauseous…his presence was boredom… for her this was what she had begotten.

Few years later…. She had slowly become a room with a view…the windows were opening to the vast sky where a few birds flew in total abundance… and she sat there watching the over looking sky…pregnant with delusions.

The man in Crimson wear stirred slowly…and asked for the bath to be ready, food to be found…table to be laid…she followed the orders…Without speaking… She picked up the phone and called her mom…between her sobs…words did not Take shape…she flung the phone and buried her face in to the pillow….

She could hear the Goan beach, Sea that had spread to he lands end, roaring waves, the Sun dipping in …a horizon that was stretched to the beyond…she slowly started looking for sea shells in the sand…

Digging hysterically…at first and then furiously…pulling the sand with her fingertips…

Beautiful Ms B

Ms B is Beautiul....as beautiful as her convictions..I still do not know why I find women more attractive than men..more profound and expressive than men..but I do..Sincerely..glare and gloat and take in beauty in women....It's kind of stoically and enchanting, mysterious ,fresh..breath taking..and stupefying at times..This Ms B has intense eyes..her eye are like a large bottle of honey...you could swim in them..wide and soulful..her brows sit just right above these eyes and are animated while expressing ideas..her nose is sharp and has a little dot of a nose ring which sparkles in between the conversations..her lips small but creased at the ends, open up to a big smile with 32 teeth, generous and charming and warped in emotions..Her small head with hair is streaked in pink and beige sits right on the nape of her neck, MS B has the quality of an unearthinesss and childish exuberance which keeps me agile and I look at her animated features without batting an eyelid...I wonder what will happen to her..she is young in her 20's all pumped up with enthusiasm and fanatic obsessions...Somewhere I also see a heart..full of dreams...her eyes flicker when she talks about them..then again you are swimming in them..looking for answers...would she be able get rid of stereo types, would she be not able to make compromises..would she be able to be herself..would she be alone....I keep wondering..swimming in those deep brown eyes....set Fences: February 2006

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Super bowl, Gandhi and kabie kushi kabhie gham..

Hey...I wanted to watch super bowl…what would i say if tomorrow at the office people talk about Steelers winning the bowl or Mic Jagger dancing like a little lady in tights? , So I switched on the TV...I did, honest to god...tried to watch super bowl and those enormous looking men with their long legs carrying a teeny weenie ball run like hungry animals to goal ...Yes, I did watch them falling over each other for the tiny ball. That ball did look funny…compared to the grotesque players...why don't they give them something of their own size?! I wondered lazily... and then…I switched to Sony TV...ball.. balle..!
kabhie kushi kabhi gham!!! I got glued to the screen , I forgot all about super bowl and chaos and the teeny weenie ball and of course those big men..
Besides the saga of love and hate and respect and all the Indian values was so overwhelming... beech mai my son was asking me..."mommy why do they show only love in Indian cinema"…"puttar...that's what is India all about"...he is doing his essay on Gandhi...Some loony white guy has written Gandhi's biography where he says that Gandhi failed thrice in high school... and learn't nothing but Fox trot in London to please the gurls...(god forbid- he actually failed all through...)and my son says…"mommy...He failed all the time in school": tch..."beta...that guy who has written the book doesn't know anything, leave that aside if he was so bad in school he wouldn't go to London and become a Barrister.."

I got upset...and he continued mulling over many contradictions to Mahatma..
I followed the movie...quite lamely until Kajol barged in on the screen.... wow balle balle...she looks like million dollars and acts like a Donkey!.
he unforgettable puppy love, the romance between kajol and Sharukh,...they look so perfect together and her Punjabi accent just right for the role. I got engrossed and almost didn’t think about super bowl.... it’s just magic to watch kajol morphing in to this character…well...I forgot her name there- lajjo? Something that sounds similar to that...and I just adored her every minute...how deliciously funny and natorious at the same time mmm…I don't care much for the American bowl nor to the Leggy men...hai mai India...and then I dissolved in to the Movie..

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Cherrie


He was was browsing through cherries- deep reddish brown, well rounded...I stood next to him gazing at his delicate hands and fingers dippingin to the basket with critical prcision and dropping them with dissatisfaction; he was two years away from me, I have this fondness welling up inside, warm and crisp like that evening breez just after a light rain .. two of us in a subzi mandi right here in Jackson hights next to each other.. , It took my breath away as I dropped the karelas down in a wooshing moment , there, he would smell the sweet hint of my presence , he would just look up as if he found me , he would take cherries and rub them gently on my hair , their deep color running in his hands, he would come around and grab my mouth in an intense lock.... I trembled with all the hypothesis playing in my mind ,. He looked at the beingan and gobi- parellel to cherries , he pinched the bhendi and tripped on methi walked inside and bought palak then he left .. without as much as a hint of a rain drop...

Old man..and Monsoons in NYC

He grazes lazily around his thoughts, harbouring vintage memories of his youth and intimacy...the yellow ball pitched to the tennis racket falls on his feet...he unperturbed Looks on at the two young lads who race in front of each other to fetch the ball, which is now lying under his feet…
The old man recollects his women and wine...his losses and gains...his woes and worries… he counts his days in all his 80 years…remembers his wife and children and some who have left him while they were young… his life has never been his...it’s borrowed, pledged often compromised like his unbranded shoes, which often fit him right…
Old man that he is...sits still in the wilderness of green grass, white space…waste land and .the slow drizzle which unsettles him..
Monsoons in NYC::
Today it’s “barish” again…the whole house hold… gathers around the portico...women men, kids, youngsters…plates in hand giggling and soaking in those wet raindrops...it has been 5 years since love nestled in this place they have married their own maternal cousins, and have moved under one roof…their lives well kept, opinions unheard, rarely bartered in disputes, women clad in headdresses and foot loose colorful “odnis” jingles of their bangles. Tinkling.. ... of their anklets…twinkling eardrops.. Girlie talks gossips always seen…across the street but not heard…never ever heard…
Only when” Barish” falls gently they gather like the bees gather to build the hive swarming around busy and…humming…serving bhel, pav and bhaji...running in and out. Romancing in the rain…reminds me so many memories. ...of bheegi bheegi ..mumbai..shehar...golguppa and the beach .

The Art of Farting

I leant the art of farting on thanks giving weekend, my cousin uploaded me with all the leftovers and I did not have a choice; choosing between a rotten two legged Turkey or mushy mashed potatoes, she insisted that I gobble the last bit that was on my plate and my stomach had this strange feeling of abandoning my spirit..
In the evening we decided to go for shopping, I kept up with my cousin’s naive whims and bought some frilly undies to go with my see through dress, along the way I got this sensation that I had to pass gas, I was in a packed antique store where some sophisticated laymen were shopping on a passing whim, I was actually surrounded by people of good upbringing, could not ask much to embarrass them but the gas in my tummy had this propelling effect on my abdomen.
Without much ado I panicked and moved away sensing the subtle attacks on white culture by my Desi fart, stealthily I lurked away from the crowd and there I go in controlled installments...trrrr...rrrah…it was gone, I looked around to make sure the expected impact was achieved in no time, and sped from the place ..While looking at the pots and panels which were intricately detailed and consciously attired I got this strange feeling of another bout...I looked around and saw a dignified old woman looking intently at the charming picture in her hand ..If I did fart she would murmur and leave the place, I wouldn’t do that to my enemy...
Sorry but I had to. ..So I just disengaged myself and trrrrr…r goes in another corner …this time no one was around...I heaved a sigh of relief...and turned to a corner as if the farted odor wasn’t mine...it was there left by some bum.
Grinning to myself...and …thrilled about my success I sheepishly pursued the other parts of the store avoiding the gentle manly and prim women…
As I picked up an urn to admire I was petrified about another …sensation in my body...weird yet bloated…I couldn’t think straight for a moment...before I could control my instincts ...there I go in controlled spasms…trrr…
The big decent man who was standing next to me is a blue shirt and pleated pant …was startled…his face twitched in an intense pain… his hands dropped the article he was holding…he stared at me in utter disbelief…
I for another moment …fled the scene like a convict hunted by the cops and swore to myself that I will never marry a man who wouldn't know the nuances of farting.…hey farting is part of a disease…its about indigestion, it’s about being lazy and eating lot of protein and not been able to drink enough fluid,…big deal that you can’t fart when you want to fart? What’s this? A British thing?

Love in times of gate keeping

Love is a potent medicine , without love what would the world be...without love what would become of human beings...we all tick because we have learnt love under various conditions and forms of life...
his name is sakhbir singh, like all men who guard the security desk he wears his gray suit and looks bland in his pale demeanor, around 40 and stout in the upper part of the torso...slightly hip, he has a humorous gait .
As the people walk in to the morning rush towards the gates...his face gets animated...
he seems to know each person in person...he goes
"hi Drake did u go for vacation"
Drake falls short of Hysteria",
"yes Mr Singh I did"
"how was it? did you take your girl friend ?"
singh winks knowingly
Drake smiles and waves at him while passing through the gate..
here comes Lewinsky the blond girl with big tits..
Singh rolls his eyes…his gesture suddenly changes to a dramatic posture
his semi baldhead and roving eyes gets focused..
" hey Lewinsky how a dee"
Lewinsky flirts "I'm good"
" how are you hon."
our singh man melts in his suite obviously happy he allows her to pass through the gate...and his looks follow her red floating skirt.
Marissa trails in with a high heel and strappy handbag, jokes with
Mr.Singh , Singh looks at her polished nails and long brushed lashes
Marissa hits him with her handbag…our Mr singh doesn't notice that she was 10 minutes late today... and third time in a row had forgotten to swipe her card...his hands had betrayed his senses...
I am for one thing is waiting to usher the guests to the 3rd floor get fixated to this whole ceremony of greeting.
MR singh doesn't let anyone pass without telling him tit bits of his or her life.
He commands an air of authority before he clicks those gates open...
they are under his mercy to spill the beans, until they give out those juicy details of their private life... he pokes at their sensibilities, humors them, flirts and sports a casual conversational mode...
I watch each person with various nationalities bow down to his lust for information, they grin and bare, make small talk,
I doubt that some fabricate exotic stories for him...
I feel the sense of power in his position as a security guard...it's nothing less than an Army commander or a prime minister...he controls almost 1000 employees per day and knows each minute details of their life?
or is it a sense of being desi and curious?
he is helpful indeed.., he looks at me between intervals...and questions...
"are u from India"
I brighten up
"yes"
he doesn't seem too amused
"where are you from"
"Bangalore"
"oh I am from Punjab"
"are u a south Indian"
"I am"
"I have been to Bangalore"
"oh"
he looks disinterested for the rest of the afternoon...
I go up to my desk
when the evening shift gets over..I come down...
I see Mr Singh ..
he is flashing a leather jacket, a black helmet..a bunch of keys... a fancy bike next to him
" I was waiting for you" "why"
since you are desi I want to get to know you better..I'm Punjabi you know"
strange are the ways of "Punjabi kind of love.."

Virtually yours

would turn out to be another endless chat session with mindless, faceless identities..
she sighed...Gitanjali.. left the Internet café...walking slowly with her bag clutched in her small hands..
her petite slender body heaving steadily by the silent sobs emanating from her throat..
it has been 7years since her husband left to his heavenly abode ..she and her son have lived humble existence
saving, living...she has tried to find a man ..like a bee trying to find a hive...so many men she met online…materialized in person...and vanished into thin air... .they send her flowers, petals, pots, printed shawls, pearls…but none, none has walked her down the aisle..
She works in a call center groggily listening to the giggles of young couples planning
their escapades.. . night and day she wonders what would come upon her on those days, when her son leaves the nest..
She doesn't understand what went wrong with Amith, he had called her umpteen times ..
was empathetic, he had sent her cards, serenaded her on line, sang old Hindi songs and almost sounded sane
but all of a sudden he had stopped...as if time stood still
why?
she probed and pondered...this was the tenth attempt at a relationship ,matrimonial columns which had offered her grooms did not do anything , men came and went as if blown away by the fall wind..
wasn't she good looking...she was short, small, feminine...had sharp features, great body, at 45 she looked in her 20's short hair, trendy , good English, what else...had all the right values hadn't abandoned her husband ,was left behind by him as a survivor.. no stigma no tags…had only one son…which is a plus in the marriage market..
Why was it that each man she met had this big fat ego...over 45 and single..
it's beyond her comprehension...they all wanted women without opinions...as soon as she started talking about finance , future, they would fizzle out…some did not like her outgoing aura…some didn’t like the fact that she likes to dance...some did not like her argumentative temperament...few she rejected…on the basis of money, status and necessity..
Some just spoke to her as time pass...fucking Indian men she fumed...they had lead her on for months…on the phone, on line, flirting, getting her emotional…making love to her thoughts...and had dropped her like a bomb...bingo...!
in the beginning when men were on line it was like an orgasm come true...flirting, dreaming, sweet talks...all so true…she fell in love one hundred times...lost track of
days and nights like an owl she would type in the dim lit room...bending down...tatatata..
all her loneliness bundled in those types...she became .. drunk...with words, sentences...strung around her neck like a garland on a wedding night...
and then…it was isolation...nothing was true...they had disappeared as fast as they came...men women...faggots...who knows…what they were...if they were human...they would know..
she had decided against marrying divorcees, she chose widowers with kids, and yet these men who had lost their wives did not look ready for another woman in their lives...
how ficklest!
Gitanjali slowly trudged on the steps opened the door lock and stepped inside the hall...her son...was watching TV all by himself…he was 12 and just like his dad..
Anirudh...handsome...smart...he had seen his dad on the deathbed in COMA...for a month...every day
"Ani did u eat?"
"yes amma"
Gitanjali...drank a glass of water and retired to her room.
what had happened to RAJ?
Raj was introduced to her by some acquaintance.. he was not a man of her dreams...buck teeth and all, was bald in few places...but she had endured him all through the evening and many days…Listening to his banter on his ex-wives and their dog poop and eating habits ..what she liked in him was his love for literature..
He knew and read everything that she knew...they could discuss endlessly on Lawrence, Aldus Huxley, and Charles Dickens....over chicken tandoori tikka and vodka..
some Sitar and Tumri..
Raj was awesome...but when it came to expressing herself on various compartments of commitment he had...in some slimy way betrayed her.
he had made her dance around his fingers, kept her waiting to hear his "yes" -fuck you, ..I am not scratching your balls..!!
Gita...cried hard on her pillows…the affair ended without a wimp...while Ani watched uncles departing and arriving like local flights on sunny days in his mom's life..
he had wished them bombed...he had almost decided to live with anything that came in pants...was male and spoke to him on those sad evenings.
Gita...looked at the ceiling fan whirling fast…throwing out specks of light...wind ..
She had just lost her last chance...Amit…Amit had come ...had met and one thing lead to another ..it was for a long time now...7 years and she was like a wasteland...parched…she hadn't changed pad this month..
Ani was in the next room...Amit had seized to exist...his calls, his voice...his online humor...his breath…smell of his perfume...white sheets…wine.
she did not have a choice being alone wasn't easy... her hands reached the drawer and pulled out the pills.
he had promised her, whispered in her ears that he would come with his ma...she knew all about his little longings…choices...his hair curled on the head...permed blond..
his mouth twisted in a smirk..
Gita...tried contacting him over the phone but he was not there, just didn’t call her back…she felt emotionally crippled and couldn't face Ani..
and holding to a broken heart with a pregnant womb wasn't easy...she had to let him know that he wasn't fair...but he wouldn't give her a chance..
she felt guilty of something untold...Ani has his dad's money...her mom will anyhow take care of him...he is another few years left to manhood...he will be just alright...
her eyes closed softly to the whirring sound of the fan..
Anirudh knocked on the door..
it was time to go to school
morning 8:30 and his amma was not awake...slowly his thuds and banging became hysterical...he went on…thud...thud…thud.............tears rolling down from his cheeks..

wah life hotho aisi..

It was when Shahid kapoor started jerking to the song pyar pyar e pyar pyar..and sanjay Dutt grinning silly in wah kya life hai- that I realized that I am on the edge of Uncle Hood.
Now I am sure the question “why” has risen in all of you regarding my statement, I should further explain to you how this enigma of age is catching up with me in terms of Hindi films.
As a teenager I visited cinehalls with my parents in tow, though my taste in movies was far more matured than that of a casual teen’s, my parents sulked every time I asked them out, they neither had enthusiasm nor the curiosity about movies.
They would say,
“ oh…we are done with all that prancing around the trees…”
I guess it’s about the age., as I have aged with Hindi films…I cannot relate to all that puppy love and crooning of maladies on the screen whether it is Shahid or some newcomer with tweaked hair,
Why only puppy love, I am not even turned on by any kind of love other than the
Love that brings some moolah and stability in characters.
Has my sensitivity towards love waned?
Is it cynicism? Indifference? Impotency?hippyism?…I watch Imran hashmi ..Pouncing on sherawat with such lust that even an old man ‘s libido would stand up...but nothing happens to mine…. I glare at the TV screen unperturbed…cold and emotionless…popping popcorns..in to my mouth..

Okay even when you readers out there are thinking what the heck, that is not love!

Godammit!!

even the mushiest scenes from…Karan Johar’s or Manirathnam’s films
Wouldn’t jerk my tears.

I sit there like a Chicken hit by a dozen lightening…. am I tuning off to the emotions?

Just the other day I was watching Salaam Namasthe…I saw the crowd go gaga over preity and Saif’s battle...their rowdy love, their fights …and finally pregnancy..aww cho cuteeee…

“Nothing happened to me”

I was there like a stamped envelope forgotten to be posted….. Sans destination…where is love man? All I could care was his career…how silly…couldn’t he be more sensible before making all that love? I would choose this as the best abstinence propagation movie of the year…to be shown to my kids as part of Hindi movie staple…
My 25 years old son …mumbles..

”DAD…have you lost it? HAVE U LOST IT?”

I see naïve signs of beard growing on his smooth face…

Son…I have to look in to what I have lost…I slightly eye myself in the mirror...I wanted to tell him that there were days when young Sharukh had eloped with Kajol in Dulhaniya lejayenge..but then I was too young .and had also tried falling in love with someone on train …but it just wasn’t Kajol…and … Her father had chased me until I left the borders of Ghorakpur in an express train.
Besides I did not fight like Sharukh in real life…
How can I tell him that I had fallen heads over heels for Sridevi’s doleful eyes in Sadma and had looked for one like her in sanitariums...? That finally when she met Anilkapoor in “Lamhe” I was seething in jealousy as an older man…?
Now how can I confess my frivolities of youth to this angel faced young man? It would only break his heart…
His love and my love have grown apart over the years……….
That is when it struck me...it was like an awakening…. there were many youngsters there who enjoyed Shahid….screaming and mooning over him in the theaters. it’s like between them and me an entire generation is lost…perhaps.. I would be telling the same to my boys…” I ain’t gonna come with you to those pyar war shadi lafda”…
As a grown up I have appreciated certain type of love… … Down the lane there are some good stories in Hindi movies where love makes you cry…I have cried for love with Nassiruddin shah in Sparsh, Shabana Azmi in Arth, KK in Hazaron Khwahishe, Rajpal yadav in Pati patni our wo.. ”...
but as you age you tend to be less of a romantic and more of a pragmatic…some day you will realize that when you sit in front of a most fabled romantic movie you may not cry...Jaane bhi do yaaroan Zindagi isika naam hai.

Desi Virgin


Desi men still virgin at forty… ?
Virginity can be defined as something that is never been put to use...sorry...but that’s what I understand by Indian standards…by that context I am referring Desi men as virgins at forty...have you seen a typical desi man in his forties...in USA/


Usually he is bald…or has a few leftover hair from his hay days… sulking and groused out about everything that bothers him, already fathered at least two kids...sometimes remembers anniversaries but never birthdays.... when you remember birthdays you are vulnerable…basically Indian men remain macho until they are 60…


Let’s se e what else he does at Forty? He often wears shorts…and eyes white women…but uncomfortable when it comes to te`te` with them...but manages to look feminist for that amount of period but he is so used to his wife’s bhindi. Talk, it takes time to switch on to man-talk mode with these women….



He has a ponch but always talks about going to the Gym with his buddies…he is very

Interested in other men in their 30’s who are dating white women…and often reminds them about home baked pakoras and garam chai…

Not that men in there 30’s over look those possibilities it’s just that they are looking at greener pastures…

He pretends that he is fashionable and radical dunks couple of beers on weekends...dutifully fucks his wife ...thrice a week…

Talks about…stocks and trades, IT and outsourcing...”dogs” about teenage sons dating and teenage daughters wanting to wear low slung jeans.. Within himself…feels dejected about his oily haired school days, his father with a cane...and the neighborhood Nalini...who he secretly loved and never got to date with. “Morals are all mispalced...America is a durty place “ he mumbles to himself…secretly hopes that he could get his white secretary to bed and dreams about her busty buns...



Memsahib …talks to him often in a shrill voice...all he hears is “Sadi. Kangan, Paisa”

He could wish her away “Sali moti “ but needs her anyway for chai paani…what would he do without her anyways….his white collegues go to the bars for lap dances on Fridays…he feels “sala.. hum yaha kyon nahin paida huye” all his twenty years he had slogged to get merits and jobs…to do the right things at right times...poor man was still a virgin when he got married! …



He often goes to parks and plays golf…wears fancy swim shorts other than VIP chudddies…never let’s his wife drive and proves a good provider…goes to Disney land dutifully and spends rest of his life with one wife and one family…often compares and degrades Americans and their lifestyle. but. ..Seriously he would give an arm and a leg to be born to a white family and date the whole bunch of blue eyed busty gals that his sons are picking up lately…

But no regrets ...at 60 If the “moti “ dies he cold get what he wants and how he wants

Dekhlenge…plots our virgin man at Forty

Desi Mind and Bikini Bottoms

Desi mind and Bikini bottoms…

I stretched on the green lawn and yawned distinctly at the blue skies…the paperback in my hand was just an excuse...my eyes were roving in all direction as well as my mind…it was a Sunday in Central park…I had trekked all the way to Manhattan just to lay back and watch the green green grass and escape the humdrum and concrete structure, dirt and smoke in the city…the pond in front of me was full of moss…few ducks in the water waded with difficulty choking on weeds…soft sunlight fell on hundreds of heavenly bodies stretched out to the divine rays from above..


Coming to the world of Gori and Goras ... lying in different angles in different shapes and sizes - They came fully clothed and got on to the grass stripped up to their bikinis and rolled in the grass…would a desi ever be able to do that? Of course desi lasses with two kids …mostly resembled our “mothers”.... as if that’s the only label left on them ...Tiered tattered and sagging from all point of view…not that the men looked otherwise…and where would they have time to strip? If at all they did, it would only be in the bathtub!
Alas…. I did not see any Desi lass or moustache men…or their little chinnu munnu in a stroller and a candy bar in hand.... It’s very de-ja- vu.... for some of us who are born in India...It’s easy to carry children on our tight waist or shoulder...a carriage with all it’s nuances lacks the convenience of a waist, at some point I had almost forsaken stroller for it was so cumbersome to maneuver on the steps and streets of New York.


I deeply got engrossed in a round bottomed beautiful leggy woman who laconically sat with a straw hat and strappy slipper...he kissed her softly as she looked in to the space for those moving directions of the clouds…her golden hair shining and shimmering yet supple to his touch…I wondered whether the guy got an erection coz he almost stuck his face in to her boobs which …transcend in its beauty.

Have I seen an American born Desi dude and Dudette neck with such obsession on such an open grassy ground…na… even if they are to be born in a million years they would not...I vouch for it…the freedom to make love in open spaces comes only by birth…and we do not have it in our culture …

Some ...women came with dogs…some men with women…women came with women…men with men some paled with a sunburn some tanned brown. Well-kept…moisturized and bleached bodies and bottoms in bikinis were frightfully disturbing to a desi mind…



It was a sane observation…I enjoyed the spirit of freedom and nonchalant attitude...I would have so got carried away and stripped myself If I had gone in bikini…
Like all desi dudettes in their middle years I was neither opaque nor transparent to the eyes...hence …I invaded others privacy with my peeps and made myself less conspicuous time and again while shifting my paperback to and fro…
Kids were else were climbing the rocks and mountains …it was as if their childhood had returned in all it’s buoyancy…

Sun was setting in the sky moon was limping back to the vision...ducks were chiding each other for food...they were pecking at the beer cans and soda bottles...littered around the pond…every one around me men and women had put on their clothes and getting back to their lives...some had slept like babies in the cool breeze, their worries must have stolen by fairies…

It was getting dark and stars would beckon them sooner or later…

When I had got to the last pages of my book...I packed my things...winked at some old men...waved at women...and walked past those peaceful ducks who were by now settled in various nooks of the park…

Tears full of eyes

TEARS- FULL OF EYES
Pintu’s hands crossed mommy’s with kind assurance. .mommy kissed his head softly and fondled him gently in to her womb...Pintu worried in his dreams that they were being dragged by a monster bike...mommy with her soft brown hair riding with this wicked man...all with black goggles and things… bikes fascinated him. He wasn’t okay with his little brother sitting close to mommy though…he kept thinking that the motorbike man would fart and the brother would switch places with him eventually..

Pintu could not dream further...Mommy was shaking him...”pintu time to get up.”.
Pintu thought “woteva”..you gotta do wot you gotta do..his eleven years old brain couldn’t function auxiliary for more profound thoughts like, where he had kept his tooth brush the last night while dealing with his much annoying gibberish brother.
Mommy was making Oatmeal. ” the same ol stuff” thought Pintu...he usually felt like a cow in the barn chewing oats radically…but mommy the immigrant she was, wouldn’t let him have more than what was required for health. Those colorful serial boxes he saw on the Key food.. . .aisle counter tops were his biggest dream...someday when he grows up he would reach for them…
Where was my godamn dad pintu thought loudly...why he isn’t home…Though he saw his dad pretty occasionally whenever he saw him it was a handful…Pintu would get all his desires accomplished while his brother kept whining..
Subtly Pintu would wonder why dad was never home why mom would cry often ..But beyond that he could only see that his mom was awesome fun...and dad slept most of the time when at home…When dad wasn’t home mom kept working as if her life depended on it...and she always spoke about savings and things...of course, he would like to go to collage Woteva that mean’s he thinks that it’s fun..
Pintu doesn’t sleep some days when mom has this vacant look in her eyes.. He has never seen his mom being friends with dad, she is so friends with us thought .--.him.
Why doesn’t dad talk to mom,it’s usually quiet at home but at times he could hear behind closed doors mom’s soft wailings dad’s screaming...Mom when she gets out has tearful of eyes.. .dad is fierce and mad. He doesn’t understand their talks on bills and money. All he wants is some peace. He thought... when he gets bigger and marries someone just like mom, he would not let the woman have tearful of eyes and those big beautiful eyes would always be happy…Pintu buttoned his shirt and took his bag ..mom was ready....and smiling brother was clutching to mom’s hands…he let that be...for today it’s okay...It doesn’t matter...until the wicked bike man doesn’t take away mom it just seems okay..

Pintu

Pintu who is just a few months short of 8years, solemnly looked at his book. His teacher’s face loomed right infront of him...
"you don’t pay attention, I am going to have to talk to your mommy"
Her flat hair lay on her shoulders like a serpents head at rest, her brooding eyes twinkled , her thin lips which were cracked at all levels of pout made him think that she needed a broom badly on which she could fly and swat . He couldn’t speak, words seem to get glued to his tongue, his mouth felt like chewed bubble gum .If he moved, the table would topple, he gripped his fingers on the desk..“you are trying to topple the desk” she pointed at him- now Pintu froze to the ground , he thought of the tooth fairy, why didn’t she put his tooth back in the middle of his jaw?.
He really felt unattractive, ugly, good for nothing, ..Ms vanity scribbled lines in his class work, obviously Pintu’s heart flew off handle for a few seconds, mom would not let him watch his TV favourites..he has to say something to the teacher, he tried hard, all he could do was stare at her - which would double her anger..Pintu came back home.
While his mom kept triggering questions, he made sure to speak his mind“can I watch TV first and then do my home work mom”?Pintu limped towards her
‘mommy you know today I got a note from the teacher"

momy's eyes rolled in amber colors

"why"?

“you know she doesn’t like me...mom”

he tried explaining the feelings of rejections but words always eluded him, besides mommy barked ‘

"We immigrants slog to bring up kids , this is what we get from you”.

Pintu wondered what’s emmy grant?

“Mommy.....who’s emmy grant?”

Nettled by his curiosity Pintu’s mom smiled tenderly, she pulled him to her, her hands stroked his bald back she counted his ribs one by one, kneaded his shoulders , took his hand up as if to read the fine lines..
"it’ s not emmy grant Raja it’s immigrant..“What’s tha?’ –

his mommy narrated how she had abandoned her roots back home in Asia... but by now Pintu yawned.. sure ..mommy had forgotten his follies, he didn’t care who emmy grant was...he would know, when he is big enough and got mustache like dad..Indian men always grew mustache when they grew up.Pintu’s 5 year old brother who was a stout little guy barged in to the house

"mom today we saw touco toucan in the class mom"

mom’s eyes followed tinku’s rounded bottoms and pintu’s eyes followed her's and they both halted on the same spot.Pintu thought why on earth Tinku had landed when he was having his private moments with mom...fat Ass...he cussed under his breath cause mommy wouldn’t hear it..

“mom you know what ?”

Pintu wanted to pick up the threads of conversation but Tinku almost flew over him

"mommy I got a sticker for reading, I am the best in my class mom"

Tinku was bursting with pride . Pintu’s little scrawney face twisted in earnest spite

"mommy I want a toy a big toy naw"-

mommy got annoyed by his unusual wants..

"Pintu what is that note from your class"..

Pintu became incoherent,

" Mommy give me Ice cream" ...(waaah) ...he tugged at her

"ice cream.. ooom"

he could whine untill Tinku for got all about his own triumphs and came to look at Pintu’s traumatised figure crawling to the refrigirator.. Tinku took charge..

"Pintu you cannot have Ice cream, but I can have it"’

he teased as he dangled the spoon over Pintu. Mommy jumped at the door , she had just done a load of laundry and didn’t have the patience to focus;

"if you ever touch that Ice cream I will break your legs"

Pintu advanced with his skinny little toes inching slowly ..as if attacking the unknown and determined to win the battle. Mommy pounced on his neck , she threw him down and pinned him hard but when she faced him, Pintu’s eyes were a well without depth , his nostrills were gasping for breath , beads of sweat ran over his temples, his frail body heaved and slumped, he had an attack ..the hundredth that came and went and took his breath away, mommy huddled Pintu ..Tinku looked at them with disgust and anger , he walked away to fix his own lunch with his tiny plump fingers ..pintu felt safe again in his mom’s arms..he wouldn’t have to worry about Ms Vanity, he would figure out tomorrow...his eyes closed slowly to his mommy’s tear stricken face , her face reminded him of rainbows... on sunny days!.

Big cities

I like big cities, crowd, noise, HBO and 160 channels, potato chips, french fries, Kentucky chicken bucket, chineese, scrumptuous burgersdancin, festivals, liitle windows, salsa,metro, tubes,tunnels, Indian curry hopping, punjabi woman in loose kurta, changing skylines of manhattanparks, temples,seedy alleys , glorious plaza hotel..,little women, tall women, beautiful women, pretty women,painted women, pointed at the toes women..juggling women, lugging women..men who stare, dare, wear, bare, abhor and whore almost forgotten on the streets...engulf me, when I yawn between intervals.