December 30, 2007


Ranjana wins - Closed shoes are now
the latest fashion statement!
And I discovered the Bata site...I can now go armed with a list of what I want!
So that means I should go stock up on these cute, wearable, and bearable shoes before they go out of fashion only to be replaced by those three-string affairs that snap as soon as one walks out of the store.

Some things don't need a title. This is one of them.

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December 25, 2007

This is what sleep-laden eyes (and lids) can produce

Blogger, don't fill in blanks!
Oh yes! I'm back to the steamier side of my love-hate relationship with headlines. Currently, I'm trying to leave lines between my paragraphs, but Blogger refuses to let me do so.
I always have such big plans for the vacation. But I forget to allocate extra hours for my favourite hobby, passion and vocation - sleeping. And what am I doing all night anyway...?
9.00 pm
Watch TV
10.00 pm
Serenade myself - in the loo. Read simultaneously. Sometimes, a serious Oriya song session.
I'm fruitfully occupied all this while. So when do these activities leave me to plunge into nothingness?
11.00 pm
Go online. Check e-mail. Watch a few Odissi videos.
12.00 am
Help my little sister convince herself that she should be sleeping instead of trying to study with drooping eyelids and a wandering mind.
1.00 am
More dance videos. Some music too. Google random people because my hands have nothing to do. Discover the joys of Google and hone my skills as the Googlerani.
2.00 am
A creative bug such as the current one may emerge. It bites as hard as those godforsaken red ants all over my bed. But Oriya ants are worse. How they manage to enter airtight bottles of chutney powder is beyond my imagination.
I listen to the same music repeatedly, and suddenly begin to dance. But it's hands only, as I don't want my downstairs neighbour going up in arms. They've been quite tolerant of late and I'd like things to stay the way they are.
Am I getting addicted
to the computer?
Or am I just addicted to laziness and blessed with the concentration span of a yoyo? Attention span of a housefly sounds better, but research has proved that they are capable of the same attention levels as humans, which explains why they sit on my notes longer than I ever do.
Actually, I'm sure this is just a general lack of focus and the poor computer, this advanced cousin of the idiot box, is not to be blamed. As for those prats who blab about how one can even use the Internet to read books, don't believe them. I tried doing the last Harry Potter book that way (and succeeded), but it makes your eyes feel like the railway toilet at Bombay Central station - full of shit.
There is one thing I really want to do this vacation - teach myself to read and write Oriya. So I'm getting back to my notebook. Feeling like a KG student is a wonderful feeling. Devoid of responsibility...
The pen is mightier
than the mouse: Ranjana

Why are there no queues in Qatar?

Once upon a time, when I studied geography, their population was 6,40,000. My tryst with geography ended on a glorious day called the SSC Geography exam day. But not before a hair-raising (and hell-raising) mental collapse which saw me waking up at 4 am to face 30-odd chapters of assorted rubbish for an 11 am paper.
Coming back to queues, it's just part of the Indian experience, one feels. You haven't stepped into a pile of cowdung , you haven't counted sheep (and felt like one) while being part of the ubiquitous queue, you haven't known India.
Today I used two buses and a train and my feet to reach a nondescript but quaintly named building - Examination House on the Bombay University campus. Mission: Application for photocopy of answer paper. Mission accomplished. Yes, I did run down two floors THRICE. I also felt honoured to wait in the queue since the officials there love eating together like a family, all at the same time. But I've seen worse. Officials who are never to be found in office. Libraries that take a day to process a book issue slip and then tell you that the book in question isn't available and you have to fill up another slip. And wait for another goes on. Clerks who do not fancy the passport-sized photos you cut into stamp-sized ones. "Studio se karake lao," they say. This was almost paradise. The guy got back from his lunch break in time. He didn't throw tantrums. I could have kissed him by the end of it. Only, he seemed to have a very prickly beard.
Not everything was so hunky-dory. Most of the application form was a waste of paper and ink. at a time...things shall change...(I hope I'm not being hopelessly sunny here)

December 05, 2007

Lessons on being middle-class enough

I've been following a few of the new serials on television. Each of them persist in conforming to their ridiculous theories on a gamut of topics.

Balaji's new offering, Kucch Is Tara, made a pathetic attempt at self-depreciation in the first episode itself. The setting is the ubiquitous "middle-class" house. With a full-time (and long-time) maid, who is an elusive character in Bombay these days, for those of us who play real middle-class people. The "parivar ki maryada" protector, the dad, has been VRSed off a cushy job...this hurls the entire family into turmoil, at their impending poverty. The dude looked like he was nearing retirement age anyway. And can't he go find another job? Even my dad did that after he retired from his bank job.

There are three hardworking kids - two, before we were treated to the housemaid spiel. Don't they bring in enough to tide over...after all there must have been a time when they were young and their dad was the only bread-earner. The central character, Kanya Godbole, accepts the job of a housemaid (and delivers "moving" dialogues in the tone of a schoolgirl puking out an answer that she has committed to heart). Kudos to her ideas of labour equality, but are you trying to tell us that she takes the job because her family is so hard-pressed for money? They live in a freaking rowhouse -ype arrangement with a garden where the maids dance and hang out wet clothes to the "bada shahar" Bombay. How many people here have gardens to dry their clothes in?!

These attempts at creating new content now end up in extravagantly flimsy and contrived scripts where characters stumble their way through amazingly unnatural situations. I'm waiting for the next new one - perhaps another story about an ordinary "middle-class" woman who ends up wearing Versace (courtesy in-house tailors) and flitting in and out of sickeningly opulent cars and "houses". Who's directing it?

PS: They even have open space for palm trees and swings...a private backyard is a luxury afforded by few people in Bombay...