Tuesday, December 27, 2005

The flight....

"This is the final boarding call for the flight BA-134. Passengers please pay attention".

"Excuse me Ma'am....Ma'am...I think your phone is ringing."
"Oh...I didnt realise...thank you"
"Please dont make this difficult for me...!!! You didn't have to call...you know how hard it is for me to go through this"
"....I know !! You at the airport ?"
"Yeah...just about to board the flight"
"Listen...I didn't mean a thing I said yesterday. I was just a little bit upset. I mean...its not your fault really. Its just the work pressure. I understand perfectly how much you care for me. I was just a big idiot"
" say something please. We have such a beautiful life...we dont have to wreck it over such a small issue"
"This isn't just about yesterday"
"But you cant just leave me and go off..."
"I just need a break...I will be back when I can get over all this ugly feeling. Maybe you need a break too"
"Iam sorry...."
"Don't be !!!!"
"......alright. Maybe you are right. But please come back soon...I cant live without you"
"Oh please..lets spare ourselves the cliches"
"I mean it....


"Excuse me Ma'am..would you like something to drink"
"Huh? Yeah...an orange juice please"
"Sure ma'am"

"Hey dude...whats the thing with ya ?? You look so screwed man"
"Shut the trap Eddie"
"Awrightt...dont get sore man...!!!! Mannn....if you believe in all that rebirth and shit....remember not to get married in your next birth..."
"What the.....get the hell outta here !!!"

"Excuse me Ma'am...you cannot use your cellphone in the plane"
"I know...I am so sorry...but this is really urgent"
"But Ma'am...its against the..."
"Please..I will not be long.....Hello..."
"Oh crap..its the voicemail...Hi..its me..!! I think I dont need the break...I was a big idiot to even think about reconsidering things !!! I know how much this means to you..and me !! Just wanted to tell you that I am taking the next flight out of Paris for home. Sorry....please forget this ever happened"

"And we have a breaking news..There has been a plane crash. Flight no BA 314 from New York to Paris, carrying 350 passessengers on board crashed about an hour back off the Scotland coast. As per the latest updates, no survivors have ben found. Over to our correspondant at the site of the wreck...."

"You have a new voice message. Please enter your access code...."

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

In retrospect...

On friday there was a 'Reach-out' programme in our office. Various NGOs had set up stalls where they sold products made by physically/mentally challenged people. I was looking through the products with a couple of my friends and stopped at a stall which had some paper products. Brightly colored cards, bookmarks, table mats et al were lined up on the table. I was just contemplating picking up a couple of bookmarks for my lil' collection when I noticed that the guy at the counter had deformed hands. Also each hand had some fingers missing. And yet he was taking money, writing out the receipts, handing out the change with such ease. There was a certain fludity in his movements, a certainity which masked the pain that he was undergoing.

Catching my eye, he flashed a bright smile. I got back to the task of picking out the bookmarks, a caught-in-the-act look on my face. As usual I was confused about which bookmark to pick. I just turned to consult my friend and oops...i knocked over the little plastic box that had been kept to accept donations. The "shortlisted" bookmarks fell out of my hand. Embarassed to the hilt, I set the box upright and said a sheepish "sorry" to the guy. He flashed the same bright smile at me. It was a perfectly normal accident. And yet somewhere deep down I felt that my sorry had other connotations. It was almost an apology for being clumsy with ten fingers intact on my hand. It was a tribute to his victory over his disability. And his smile was an indication of understanding and a graceful acceptance of the apology.


Saturday night...there I was at the annual day celebrations of a company, with my friends. Wide open grounds, flashing lights, milling crowds, decorated stage, food stalls (which obviously were the star attractions).
And then there were a set of blind kids who performed a group dance. It was so stunning. They arranged themselves into different formations. It was amazing how they found their partner's hand just at the correct beat and how all the interlinked hands went up in perfect synchronisation during the crescendo.
Everyone just sat dumbstruck till the host reminded the gathering that the children can just hear us and not see us !! And then there was a sudden uproar of claps through the audience.

The children were dressed in bright clothes and had flowers around their necks and wrists. The stage was lit with a combination of lights -red, blue, UV, strobes !!!
The audience were rapt in attention. The smiles were wide on their faces as they clapped not just for the performance but for the performers. But the children could not see all this. Their sole motivation were the sounds in the darkness. And yet it was one of the most spirited performances I have ever seen !!!


Thursday, December 15, 2005

Return of the work-a-holy-ics anonymous

Rhyme of the ancient programmer...

When the room was dark
and there was no light
I had a nightmare
when?? oh just last night !!!

There was a noose around my neck
I was sitting in a chair
facing a cluttered screen
and everyone else was there

There were bugs crawling
with their limbs-fore and hind,
all over my body
and creeping into my mind !!!

I tried hitting a button
with relief i was about to slump
when the screen pronounced
the sentence "sys core dump" !!!

There were loadsa other buttons
I tried hitting them all
Nothing worked, nothing changed
and then...i got a call !!

Said the hoary voice
You are the one..
No one will help you
to save u will come none...!!!

The noose tightened
I was choking
I screamed and cried
yet everyone was working !!!

And then I found a note
'Users guide' it said
thousand lines of junk
in panic i read !!!

To come out of your dream
use Ctrl+Alt+Del
for this escape route
gladly my soul i wud sell !!!

And so just when my last breath
was holding onto a thread
I pressed the magic buttons
And all i saw was red !!!

cos on the screen were written
two words - maybe it was a curse
"Fatal Error" it said
and suddenly things were much worse !!!

And then i woke up screaming,
my heart twisted like a sickle
Maybe thats what happens dear pal..
after too much work in a cubicle !!!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


Well...this is a new endeavour that has kind of wiggled its way into my imagination some time back !!!! what i want to do..is to pick out a picture and then build a story around the picture !!! maybe just a more voluntary and enjoyable form of the picture compositions that used to figure in the english question papers in school !! :)
so here goes...

"Mom..look at that fisherman", a 7-year old finger pointed in the distance.
"Oh yes Ron...the sun has gone down. The fishermen take their boats and go out to the sea. They return in the morning with their catch", the doting mother explained.
"But papa goes to fish at the creek and never takes a boat. And he never goes at night..."
An amused smile of understanding.."Oh no son...Papa is not a fisherman !!! And this happens in India..not back home in Stratford at the creek".
Silence trying to fathom the difference between 'going fishing' and 'being a fisherman' !!
"Can i go look at him?" the eyes never left the fisherman.
"Oh well....but be careful honey"

The boy half-ran towards the boat, leaving behind 7-year old footprints in the sand.
The fisherman was arranging the net inside the boat, rough callused hands arranging the net in neat folds. He stood there, clad in only a loin cloth, completely oblivious to the round, saucer like eyes that watched every move of his. The eyes watched his hands as they lifted the oars in one sudden heave and deposited them into the boat. They watched the effort in the age-hardened eyes, the wrinkles on the face that cringed with pain, the beads of sweat which glistened on his skin.
The eyes watched the muscles as they strained against the skin, the face defiantly relaxed and calm. The last rays of the sun danced on his face. The eyes smiled gleefully at the sight - the blissful smile of 7-year old eyes.

The boat was ready for the evening's rendezvous with the sea. The net sat regally on its throne flanked by the oars. The sides were wiped clean of the sand and the occassional barnacle that clings onto them. The boy caught the fisherman's eye and he saw a flicker of energy and excitement in them. The boy smiled and the shrivelled beedi-blackened lips broke open into a smile in return - three pan stained teeth greeting 25 pearly whites. And then he turned. He was pushing the boat into the sea, the teeth grinding themselves into the defenseless gums.

The boy stood in silence looking at the fisherman. The dark skin seemed like chocolate...dark chocolate which seems sinful, hard and yet melts at the slightest hint of warmth. The beads of sweat were droplets of moisture when the cold chocolate is left out in the open..exposed, unprotected, vulnerable.Chocolat..they call it in a more exotic manner. And this was exotic for him. Every time the skin moved, it was the chocolate flowing down the stem of the spoon, in jerky movements which have a certain fluidity in them. He loved the color - deep, dark, having its secrets !!!

The boat was almost in the water. The fisherman waited for a wave to lift it out of the sand. And the sea obliged. The boat lifted off the ground with a sudden lurch and the tired muscles clambered into the boat triumphantly. The fisherman turned to look at the boy and waved at him.
The boy smiled and waved back. Chocolate always made him happy. He stood looking at the boat until it surrendered itself to the sea and turned into a speck on the horizon !! The chocolate melted away with the last rays of the sun and blended itself with the flow of the sea.

The boy turned back and retraced his steps...the bitter-sweet taste of chocolate in his 7-year-old mind !!!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

'Booked' for the day...

Okay...so here is a tag that I will surely relish carrying out !!
Thanks Hems for this :)
And yeah...am goin to add a few categories of my own too :p :p

Books that I liked the most

This is like picking out the shiniest diamonds from a sack full of them !!!!
Tough call...but nevertheless...!!

1) Hitchhikers Guide to the galaxy -Douglas Adams
Absolutely Stunning - nothing in the world can beat this book !!!!
No words I use here can sum up what the book is all about...!!
So if you haven't read it...please rush to the nearest bookstore or surrender yourself to the 'Total Perspective Vortex' (oops...got a paradox here !!)

2) Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie
Absolutely stunning !! Made me fall in love in Rushdie (fatwa and three wives notwithstanding). The book is a mosaic of emotions, magic and beautiful imagery woven into a story which makes you feel like a kid in a toy shop. Well..maybe on a more colourful note, the book is like a perfect cuppa coffee !! The taste lingers long after the story is over. But it is definitely not something one can finish over a cuppa coffee...!! Quite a heavy read...

3) Godfather - Mario Puzo
A book which I have read about 6 times...and can gladly read again !!!It gave me my obsession with Michael Corleono (and Al Pacino..thanks to the celluloid version). It gave me my fascination for Italy (Italians more specifically :p :p), bell peppers fried in olive oil....and anything remotely Italian.
The book made me a deal I just couldn't refuse :))

4) God of Small things - Arundhati Roy
Sheer poetry. Never before had the 'fountain and love-in-tokyos' on the head of a child seemed so beautiful. A book which I returned without reading just because "public opinion" had it that the book was "crude and filthy"; and picked up 4 years later only to fall in love with it. The innocence of childhood and complexities of adult life set against a beautiful backdrop.

5) To Kill a Mocking Bird - Lee Harper
Amazing book which I can read over and over again. The story is narrated from the perspective of a child, and before you know it you are transformed into a child again, running with a tyre down the road, climbing trees on a mid-summer afternoon.
And aside to the girls, you will definately fall in love with Atticus Finch...well...i did :) :p

6) The Alchemist - Paulo Coelho
What i love about the book is its simplicity. A short fable which teaches you what life is all about without thrusting down your throat obscure, abstract sayings and too-idealistic morsels of wisdom. Left quite a big impression :)

Authors i like
1) Salman Rushdie - Magical...absolutely magical !!!!Amen !!
2) Douglas Noel Adams - I worship this man !!! thats about all I can say !!! :)
3) O Henry - Just read three short stories of his...and have already started loving his style of writing. Makes you want to be a child again..and be presented his book on your birthday by the cheerful old uncle next door.
4) Enid Blyton - for having created a whole new world of picnics in the woods, solving mysteries during summer vacations and burly old policemen screamin 'Clear orf' :p :p

Unusual books that I liked
1) Siddhartha - well...cant really call it unusual !!! The only reason that I put it here is that I never thought I could enjoy such a deeply spiritual and philosophical book !! and I was stunned !!! A must read by everyone who feels restless about life in general...

Cartoons i like
1) Tintin - can swear by the 'blistering barnacles' and 'thundering typhoons' that its the best !!!
2) Asterix and Obelix - for the sheer creativity in naming the characters
3) Calvin and Hobbes - humour at its best !!!simply makes my day
4) Suppandi - how...i mean just about how can somebody be so dumb ??? ?!!!!
5) Archies - Ultimate timepass....:)
6) Dilbert - exclusively for people trapped in their cubicles !!! scott adams takes amazing digs at the "corporate culture" !! :))

Books that I want to read
1) 100 years of solitude
2) Love in the time of cholera
(have heard lots about these two books)
3) 1984
(after the impact that animal farm made...)
4) The Impressionist
5) English August
(have been wanting to read this since 6 years)
6) Shalimar the Clown
(for the sheer love of rushdie...)

Books that I have left halfway thru and want to complete
1) Satanic verses (for the sole reason that I cannot read this ebook for long stretches in office)
2) Lee Iacocca - autobiography
3) Tipping Point - Malcolm Gladwell

Currently reading..
Atlas Shrugged - Ayn Rand leaves a long lasting impression on your mind !!!

Whew !! Thats about it all !!!!
Can think of loads of more categories...but can spare that for some other tag (hey..for those of u who know german..pun unintended :p :p)

I now pass on this tag to Sanat, (for donning the garb of a reviewer with hiddenmoon :) and Ojas, (in memory of all those books read in the Remote Sensing Lab of NIO :)

Monday, December 05, 2005

Moodpic -II

Thoroughly STRESSED at the moment...
got a deadline this evening...
swamped with loads of work which makes no sense....
and yet have got time to spare to pick out a moodpic...:p :p

Friday, December 02, 2005


Just felt like postin a pic...which reflects my current mood !!!!
deep in thought and yet relaxed...

absolutely random...

scorching heat on bare cheeks...
a slender leg perfectly fitting into the narrow shadow of a pole...
crystal clear water glistening in a pool..
an unshed tear for everything that ever went wrong...
the feel of skin on a chequered blanket...
the feel of the bone crumbling to bits....
the steam rising out of a bucket of hot water...
the fragrance of shampoo entwined with the curls...
the smell of the creme on sunburnt skin...
the whispering of the breeze through the gap in the window...
the stillness of the fan rotating at the fastest speed...
the melody of the silence...
the soothing feeling of a wet towel wrapped around the neck...
the trembling of the door in the perfectly still night...
the surge of energy through the tired limbs...
the trickling of the last drop of water down the throat...
the soft glow of the laptop in the heart of the room...
the murky smell of yellowing pages in a second-hand paperback...
the goodnight whispered into the phlegmatic ears of a softtoy...
the dormant hug of a pillow with large flower prints...

Don't ask me why I have written this...!! As the title suggests...these are
purely random thoughts that just crept into my mind...!!! no connection...they
make no sense at all...and yet i feel a certain sense of poignancy in them !!
Amen !!