Thursday, November 19, 2009

Bite into this!

I woke up this afternoon, completely sure I had been bit. Bit by what you ask? Twilight fever of course! What else could occupy the mind of one such as me — occult-curious, slightly deviant and oh-so-into hunky men? Who am I kidding? This was just the millionth time I had fantasized about my ‘someone special’ being a Vampire.

My obsession with Vampires dates back to when I was 12 [‘dates back’ — makes me already sound like a Vamp(ire)!]. My horror movie lover brother, hired a ‘banned cassette’ from our local VHS store when my parents were out on work. We were home alone for 3 days and nights, and we ensured we had enough of scary movies to keep us awake till the early hours of morn each day.

One of those naughty taboo indulgences, at least one of them that stayed with me till date is ‘An interview with a Vampire’. Based on Ann Rice’s brilliantly written novel with the same name, the masterpiece was a visual orgasm, complete with an almost deific looking cast (all Vampires though, how ironic!), an evil and yet beautiful homoerotic storyline, and a thin narrative that somehow managed to connect deviant vampirism, mainstream sexuality and taboo raw passion in a way I’d never seen before. Well, I was 12 and I won’t exaggerate on how it actually influenced me. I was petrified and quite scared to be completely honest. I kept dreaming that I’d been bitten and even swore I saw a Vampire several times. That apart, what my young mind did remember was the physical beauty in each of the individuals portrayed.

Vampires have always been portrayed as beautiful things. Myths and legends around the world claim the ‘supposed species’ have a weak spot for the ravishingly beautiful and won’t think twice to make one such, one of their own. Vampires are often deviously handsome or pretty, are extremely well mannered and possess such sexual prowess that only the chastest could resist their charm.

So, do I believe in Vampires, you ask? Well, I do, as much as I believe in Cro-Magnon man and the River Saraswati, things I’ve never really seen, but believe to exist. Why do I believe in them, you ask? Well. these blood sucking pretty things have always occupied the imagination of cultures as far spread as Puerto Rico and China and that can’t be a simple coincidence. The animal like hunger that these ‘creatures’ have for feeding on fresh blood is often the most tantalizing, terrifying and titillating element of their deviant existence. I don’t know of even one ‘sexually mature’ friend, of either gender, who hasn’t fantasized of biting or being bitten quite vampirously at least once. Almost all of us do it. I even have a theory that the ‘hickey’ that’s so popular (love bite for the more romantic) is nothing but a more subtle version of these ravenous lustful desires.

So what is it that drives women (and several men) up the wall squealing in anticipation to be the next victim (even in role play) of some gorgeous Vampire? (Read Robert Pattison) and why do we all get so riled up about how gorgeous and seductively evil the whole concept of blood sucking can be? I think it’s just the need for raw passion. Raw unbridled seductively evil passion that we all crave from our individual partners. Something that we assume will give us immense pleasure and yes, also the fact that most Vampires are HOT and extremely do-able. Watching re-runs of the trailers however I have just realised that while Vampires do turn me on in a ‘special way’, post New Moon and Taylor Lautner, Werewolves now occupy a ‘special’ place in my list of fantasies too! All I’m going to say for now is (and I mean it), Taylor Swift, move aside girl, you’ve got stiff competition! Lol :P

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Washing this anger away

It’s been over a month now, and two weeks since I’ve sat down to write something about life in this new city. I’ve had lots to say and a lot more to share, but circumstances and an overcoming sense of lethargy always seemed to get the better of me. Lethargy in a city that thrives on an irrepressible buzzing energy and uncontrollable raging hormones — you ask — raising that ever-indulging eyebrow? Yes, LETHARGY and loads of it! The weather’s changed, but nothing else seems to have moved an inch, including me, much like that ‘normal’ traffic jam I was in, the other day. I was stuck in a Taxi on a flyover halfway between Byculla and Palton Road, all thanks to a meeting held by Mr Marathi Manoos Saviour (read Raj Thackeray and his MNS) at the Haj Committee building. The jam lasted for an hour and a half and I said nothing. I didn’t even complain! Funnily, I actually took time out to enjoy the free birds view of South Mumbai that I was ‘treated’ to. It wasn’t pleasant, at least not here. Picture me doing this in Namma Ooru. Me, who moved residence to the centre of town only because I couldn’t take the occasional 15-minute traffic hold up at Silk Board flyover, was now twiddling my thumbs, humming tunes and karaokeying to my MP3 player as vehicles stalled all around me for miles in either direction. Was I becoming an escapist? If escapism suddenly meant to want to run away, I wondered later. Frankly, I believe it’s the city to blame. What else could it possibly be? Like some unexplainable paradox, this city’s chaotic life often leaves someone like me blissfully and unalterably lethargic. With everyone going mad trying to reach work on time, catch that train on time, get to that mall on time, date bf/gf on time, eat on time, drink on time and the like, I preferred giving myself loads of extra hours with practically nothing to do. So, how did I keep myself occupied you ask? Well, it was simple actually. Here’s what my itinerary looked like a few days ago, purely for example’s sake. Wake up at 11 am. Get ready by 1 pm. Take cab to Goregaon (approx 20 kms away) at 2 pm. Watch Tamil/Telugu movie at strange slippery-floored mall (read Oberoi) for ‘jusht chumma’ sake at around 4 pm. Take a cab back to Parel after movie. Sit at home and stare at feet for another hour or so. Take cab to Colaba to meet ‘love interest’ or friend or both. Hang out at Theobroma’s, eat at Bagdadi’s or sit at Marine Drive and stare at crashing waves…right!…dead sea. Wonder what I’m doing here still, get depressed, then eventually bored, take cab back home. Sleep. Mumbai does have its charm. Maybe just that I am not the kind to be charmed by it. There is magic in the air, yes, but there’s also lots of dust, the ever present smell of fish and a stale dank sordid feeling that will never leave you. The rain today washed away most of my anger towards the city. Anger that some considered sinful to even mention. As I folded up my pants and ran to office carefully avoiding puddles with unmentionable and unclassifiable remnant goo, I missed clear waters with an aching for home that choked me. I miss Bangalore’s rains, the madness and juvenilia in the puddles and the fresh, clean gorgeous city after the rain. How I envy you, while you read this. You, who can run out after the next shower and be a kid all over again. You who breathe in that city I adore. Save it for me, please, I beg. I am on my way home.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Simply Fabulous, I say!

Quick Gun Murugan is brilliant to say the least. With an amazing script and a hilarious storyline,this tale of an entertainingly created and superbly portrayed cowboy super-hero is sure to be one of the year's best comedies.
Cast: Rajendra Prasad, Rambha, Nasser and Raju Sundaram
Director: Shashanka Ghosh

Take the accent and dialogues of one of Tamil cinemas' most famous faces (read Rajnikanth), who is Marathi;add to that the style of a king of the yesteryears (read MGR), who is Malayali; get an actor who is of Teluguorigin to play the part (read Rajendra Prasad) and what do you have? Quick Gun Murugan, yes, but more importantly, one of the best pan-south Indian comedies ever made!

Quick Gun Murugan is caricaturing taken to the levels of a fine art. With elements thrown in from every corner of every state south of the Vindhyas, the accents and stylisations alone can make you pass through this one, thoroughly satisfied. A storyline that is simply the homework of someone who knows what being South Indian really means, be prepared to laugh your head off at the stereotypes represented to perfection.

The performances are amazing too. Rajendra Prasad is brilliant as Murugan. His natural talent for aping the icons combined with his problematic good looks (read Telugu good looks), add up to an interesting mix, that will surpriseyou at every stage.

Rambha as Mango Dolly is fun. She seems to have enjoyed the role thoroughly and that's evident in herhilarious on-screen portrayal of Dolly. I particularly liked Raju Sundaram as MBA. It's been quite some time since we saw his brand of comedy on screen. The out and out stealer is however Nasser. With his Telugu accent and mannerisms, he's sureto tickle the funny bone of anyone who's ever seen a 'mass' Telugu movie. What worked in the English version of the film was the huge chunk of sub-titled Tamil dialogues. Not only did they add extra much-needed flavour, but they retained an authenticity that would have otherwise been lost.

The cameos by Anu Menon(Lola Kutty) and Vinay Pathak were amazing, but Ranvir Shorey as the sansani reporter was the winner! The music stands out all through the film and most of the audience was humming some tune or the other from the filmas we left the show.

This one is an all out entertainer, so take your friends and family or take them each separately,because we're sureyou wouldn't mind watching the movie all over again, several times. I am surely going to!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Mind it, I say!

Mind it! Quick Gun Murugan might be the next funniest thing to hit Bollywood, but to someone like me, I’m not too sure that’s good humour anymore. In what seems to be a trend these days, television and the ad industry are cashing in on the supposed South Indian accent, and making loads of money at the expense of ridiculing a community. What’s wrong in that you say? Well, to begin, let’s talk about the concept. The idea of a South Indian accent, as has been endorsed so brilliantly by Bollywood over the last few decades, is a farce. I will agree that there might have been something similar that was spoken, which in turn was exaggerated beyond recognition into the ugly sounding parlance that is now passed off as South-Indian-speak. Why is that wrong you say? Well, it’s wrong because it’s factually incorrect, as factually incorrect as another existing notion that all Sardarji’s are stupid. The accents in the South are as interesting as accents get. Often as students of language, one cannot but marvel at the way these accents have evolved. Take for example phrases like, ‘Simply Adjust Maadi’ – a phrase that defines a whole generation and the ideology it stands for. Or for example the interesting ‘Tanglish’ (Tamil-English) words that have no English equivalent. I mean can the much-researched process of roaming around an area that houses one’s ‘heartbeat’ be more eloquently expressed than with the usage of the word ‘Suththify’? It’s just a joke, why take it so seriously, you ask? Well, I agree at some point it was funny. The days of the ‘ek chathura-naar’ being the funniest song on television have long gone and the accent that’s supposedly South-Indian over done with half a dozen Mithunda movies. Sridevi actually has a natural South-Indian accent and had to put on a fake, more identifiable South Indian accent for ‘Malini Iyer.’ Who even does that and more importantly why? Lola Kutty is funny and thankfully she’s appreciated for her sense of humour that is only made funnier with the Malabar-Twang, but cross your heart and swear that you’ve only heard Malayalis speak with that far-fetched accent? It’s not like movies haven’t ridiculed accents in good taste! Read ‘Thenali’ or the more recent ‘Dasavathaaram,’ where Kamal Hassan pulled off a brilliant Telugu accent, that was appreciated by several Telugites themselves. Shah Rukh Khan trying to be all South-Indian and funny on the other hand, the lesser said the better. Yes, all the North Indians in the theatre laughed their heads off, while one half of the South-Indians giggled just to please the crowd and the others, like me, swore that Bollywood was the last thing we’d turn to for comedy. Believe me that was a choice well taken. Rajnikanth might be an icon and his way of speaking at times hilarious. What Bollywood fails to realise is that South-India is evolving into a far prouder demographic. We love the way we are and some of us even see sense in our peculiarities, for good reason. With such a wave of newfound self-respect and love, Quick Gun Murugan might not be the best movie for us to be so excited about. Yes, we’ll still watch it and yes we’ll enjoy it, but that’s only cause we don’t mind laughing at ourselves and of course, Bollywood – will they ever get it? But for those of you who are planning to laugh in ridicule, all I’m going to say is – Mind it!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Prevention is better than cure?

“I am feeling faint, I feel sick, maybe I have swine flu, lol :P” read the status message of a friend just a few minutes ago. While I should commend this friend of mine for being so silly and brave while the whole city runs mad with swine flu panic, I also think maybe we’re taking it a tad too lightly. But then again are we? I remember my mother (the ever wise) always saying, “Eat well, and nothing can harm you.” Sometimes I wish it were that simple. A look at me and any one worth an opinion would swear that I am a good-eater and I am indeed! Is that why I don’t fall sick too often (touch wood)? But then, what about falling ill, being apparently poisoned by food, hardly a week ago. “Oh! That’s just bad luck,” my mother would say and I might just have to agree. Food experiences in India revolve largely on the notions of luck.Indians are world-renowned for being tough creatures. Yes, we are a prime example of the human race, evolved in every sense, tough from the inside and the outside. Our food is considered unhealthy, why even poisonous to a few, and yet we thrive and consume kilos of these ‘oriental delicacies’ per day and stay perfectly fine. We actually grow eating it, as much as many westerners might find that surprising. Hygiene is re-defined in the country’s many food-lanes. If it smells ok, the food looks clean and the cook has a smile on his face, the food is safe – any old grandmother would agree. Our stomachs have been lined since the day we were born with layers of protective coatings and most of the time, the old-oil from that last plate of pakodas, wouldn’t elicit a burp while it might have poisoned a whole township in Seattle. We’re tough yes, we agree! Yet, we’re also the same species who will run like wild animals to the nearest hospital the moment an epidemic is announced. “Doctor! My eyes are red, do I have swine flu,” a doctor friend was genuinely asked, by a patient earlier today. Remember Chikungunya? How we all thought we had it? Maybe panicking comes naturally to us, as a people plagued by epidemics for centuries (read the innumerous plagues and virus epidemics we’ve faced over the last few centuries). So maybe, it’s in our blood. But need we worry that much?All I’m saying is, “We’re Indians!” Fine! Be concerned and do keep track of what’s happening to your body, but the next time you feel an itch in your nose, please do take a minute to consider that all you need is a good scratch, not the run to the nearest swine flu center.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Maathey Malayadhwaja Paandya Sanjaathey...

I first heard this beautiful krithi raagam in Morning Raaga and I'm forever indebted to the movie, its makers and everyone who was involved in getting me to watch it, for it has become a part of my daily life... and I just can't seem to pass one whole day without one hearing of this amazing rendition...The following is the link from youtube of the Original Morning Raaga video of the song, which is also the beginning of the movie. What a way to start...

Here are the lyrics in all the languages I could use to write it in...Hope its of some use to anyone!I know I might have made a few spelling mistakes, especially in the Tamizh version where I was torn between the use of the grantha alphabets or the native equals... I chose the grantha :

மாதே மலைய த்வஜ பான்ட்ய ஸந்ஜாதே...

மாதங்க வதன குஹ ஸஹொதரி ஷன்கரி சாமுண்டேஷ்வரி...

சந்திரகலாதரி, தாயே கௌரி...

માતે મલયધ્વજા પંડય સંજાતે...

માતંગ વદન ગુહા સહોદરી શંકરી ચામુંડેશ્વરી...

ચંદ્રકલાદરી તાયે ગૌરિ...

ಮಾತೆ ಮಲಯಧ್ವಜ ಪಂದ್ಯ ಸಂಜಾತೆ...

ಮಾತಂಗ ವದನ ಗುಹ ಸಹೋದರಿ ಶಂಕರಿ ಚಾಮುಂಡೇಶ್ವರಿ...

ಚಂದ್ರಕಲಾದರಿ ತಾಯೆ ಗೌರಿ...

മാതെ മലയധ്വജ പാണ്ട്യ സന്ജാതെ...

മാതംഗ വദന ഗുഹ സഹോദരി ശങ്കരി ചാമുന്ടെശ്വരി...

ചന്ദ്രകലാതറി തായേ ഗൌരി...

మాతే మలయధ్వజ పాండ్య సంజాతే...

మాతంగ వదన గుహ సహోదరి శాంకరి చాముండేశ్వరి...

చంద్రకలాదరి తాయే గౌరీ...

Friday, August 07, 2009

Betrayed by a Democracy

This is a piece that appeared edited in the MidDay Bangalore a day after the fake encounter... Here's the unedited version...
Pic Courtesy: Tehelka

A quick glance through Tehelka’s exclusive coverage of the fake encounter in Imphal yesterday is a piece of evidence that’s been long pending. Our country is no more a nation but a set of individualistic territories not willing to give up their differentiating identities. Can a nation be more nihilistic? For years as a young Manipuri-Tamizh, I tried explaining my stand as an Indian to groups of intellectuals who always tried to convince me that our country had gone terribly wrong. I wanted to have faith. I wanted to believe in the idealistic India – a country that was a home to many, a nation built on difference, bound by a constitutionally guaranteed equality. I did believe, wholeheartedly, till I moved to Manipur in early 1999. Hardly a month in the state and I realized how naïve I actually was. Nothing seemed democratic in the state anymore. A deteriorating educational system, backed by a powerless government, that had plunged the state into a virtual black age. Troops from the Indian army had taken law into their own hands for a long time by then and funnily enough locals who were in the Indian army also indulged in these acts that can only take one name - Opression. Fine, the local people had asked for a separate state. Yes, they were an armed militia and of course, a few groups were always associated with illegal activities like extortions and abductions – but where was the army being any different? My two-year stint in the state came to and end and I ran back to the south to complete my education. Vague and often muted cries of help did catch my attention, and an occasional Manorama did make it to the national headlines, but that was it. I was blissfully ignorant and content. I spent my time researching culture and falling in love with the India of my dreams. My degree in journalism helped me get involved with the local media and I realized that the inequalities in this country were far too many. My India was no more the place I dreamt it was. It was it's ugly opposite that was the reality I saw. States oppressed communities by holding back infrastructure – read Telengana, and others suppressed the rich cultural heritage of minorities in bargain for a more unificatory identity – read Karnataka. Some states even went to the point of declaring state religions and imposing compulsory prayers in government school like the incomparable Madhya Pradesh. India seemed to be a democracy only in our constitution. The real story was something else altogether. It was hard to make comparisons and decide who was suffering the most. It was however obvious that the only states suffering from nothing less than a central controlled military backed opressive rule were the 3 North Eastern states of Assam, Manipur and Nagaland and Jammu & Kashmir in the North. These regimes were however justified by the government as security measures. The world knows enough about the Kashmir issue, but the plight of the North East is still one of the least reported military backed crime sagas. With the brilliant coverage given by Tehelka on the supposed encounter, it’s now for the world to see how our centre responds. Will the centre care enough to clean up these crimes and give satisfactory explanations to the people of Manipur or like always will they ignore it long enough and hope it disappears like a bad dream? The world is watching and this time the country is watching too – the core of our democratic India is finally being questioned. Can we blame this one on the militia too? And since we’re asking, are we really sure we’re not involved in Baluchistan’s terrorism as claimed? Are we that sure about anything anymore?

Saturday, July 18, 2009

My Vision for India

A piece originally written for a magazine article that might never ever get published... Decided to publish it here...

The India we live in, is an India I love; ever changing and chaotic – a quality that’s often inevitable and necessary. Being a 22 year old gay man who has been associated with the media for the last five years – I now realise, know fully well and believe that India, as a democracy, has hope. I, like many others in my age group, grew up in a country filled with hypocrisy, double standards, failing government machinery, under-representation and stark ethnic biases. The country was defined by its several paradoxes, almost like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle that would never fit in and yet we thrived and grew into thinking individuals. Representing varied ethnicities from, quite literally, corners of the country; I grew up in a family that imbibed, what I would like to call, ‘true Indian-ness’. We belonged to several cultures, had diverse religious backgrounds and evolved into the Indian who lived in peace and co-existence. We were, to put it simply, the post-independent-unified-India’s perfect Indian family. Language was never our barrier; because we chose a language that was ours and yet not ours – English, that belonged to everyone. The country, for as long as I remember, had violent and vehement identity politics at the very base of its functioning. Be it the less publicised ostracising of North-easterner’s, or the more vocal, obvious and often colour-based South-North divide. Communities that refused to fall under the well-camouflaged, yet widely implemented homogenising processes, had to bear the brunt and still do, by being considered enemies of the majority. Be it the Dravidian movement of the South or the Secessionist movements in the North-east and Kashmir, the only linking character has been the resentment of a culture imposed. The same can be said of the gay community, who even after a legal verdict in their favour, are still being judged, persecuted and pushed to the fringes of society, all in the name of majority politics. Will minorities ever have a right to exist equally? When did the majorities start to matter and why? Or rather, when did this anonymous majority, which does not really have one singular representational face, start feeling claustrophobic by every extra right given to the minorities? Why is there a need to impose a uniform culture in a country that prides itself in its diversity and for that matter why do we have one official Language of India? These questions will never be answered; the answers might just prove how un-democratic we’ve come to be. The future of India is in equality. Till, we as educated citizens of a well-rooted democracy, fight for every right that has been held back, things might never change. I envision India to be the democracy that will show the way to the world. We do have our loopholes in all our systems, but as long as we are motivated to demand what we deserve, the future seems worth-it. The struggle has just begun; we are fighting for a new kind of Independence; an Independence from our devolved selves.
We need to realise that we define India, India doesn’t define us.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Being Gay in Christ.

This is a piece I had written for DNA Mumbai and was published soon after the prides in three cities across the country.

I do not speak as an authority on Christianity’ but as a Christian who defines his life through his faith in Christ. The religion to me is a way of life and my choices, ethics and beliefs are built around the very core of Christ’s teachings. Christianity as I have understood it is a religion that teaches you that love is indeed supreme. As long as two people are convinced that they are in love and are not negatively affecting or influencing anyone else’s existence by being in love, they ought to be allowed to continue to exist in such a relationship. The faith has always called for acceptance and tolerance, always preferring the former. The church, catholic or otherwise, has been against homosexual relationships because as a structured organisation it has believed in their ‘deviance’. The religion as it has evolved looks at the institution of marriage with a rather one-minded approach, that of procreation and since most such supposedly ‘unnatural’ alliances cannot create life, they are deemed useless and even furthered to be sinful. Several interpretative readings of certain passages in the Bible are often used as the basis of this biased reasoning. My only question is, when did our churches forget, that Christ himself accepted. Churches will agree that Christianity is defined as a religion of fellowship, but they seem to forget that often more than not, it is more importantly defined as a religion of personal faith. I believe I am at peace with my personal faith and my sexuality and hence if the people I fellowship with or the church that I worship at have an issue with my sexuality, I will not think twice to disassociate myself with either. The choice at the end of the day is in accepting as Christ would have accepted, or in creating rules based on general biases that keep the ‘different’ out of the church. The church of today will have to consider the future of the religion, the teachings of Christ and then make this important choice.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Madras suththi paakuh ponaen!

I finally visited Chennai and thanks to the unending friendship of someone close, I ended up staying in hotels all through. Good for me. I got to see more of the city this way. As bad as the trip was, Chennai appeals to me and so here’s my list of why Chennai rocks and why it doesn’t. I’ve further added a comparison to Hyderabad, my least favourite city in South India for now, just to make comparisons more interesting!

What I like about Chennai:
1) The quaint white bridges, everywhere!
2) The super cool radio stations that always play my kinda music
3) Road names that speak volumes.
4) The central looking Central Station
5) The green. (It’s a myth that Chennai is not green enough!)
6) The friendly auto drivers, always willing to help.
7) The bus services that seem to run the city.
8) The stretches of beautiful beaches, finally looked after.
9) The street food – Yummy!
10) The fact that whatever happens, the city will always remain heavily Tamizh.

What I hate about Chennai:
1) The fact that every area looks the same! How!
2) That cable TV translates into well… 20 Tamizh channels.
3) The weather!!!!!!!
4) The lack of a Central shopping district/entertainment district.
5) The seeming lack of water.
6) The exorbitant auto rates and the fact that they don’t use the metres.
7) The ancient buses (Sorry! If Bangalore can afford a new fleet, so can Chennai!)
8) The lack of proper restaurants to eat at or the lack of choice thereof.
9) The superb ability of the city to make you feel useless.
10) The madness called life, where anyone can get lost.

Chennai V/S Hyderabad
1) Chennai has a local train system, Hyderabad has a metro rail system that runs on the same tracks but is extremely affordable and efficient – Metro wins
2) Chennai has amazing roads and the dust always seems settled, Hyderabad is a dusty paradise where breathing can become difficult if you’re not used to it – Chennai wins
3) I do not see garbage in Chennai, Hyderabad stinks of garbage – Chennai wins
4) Chennai has the Koovam, Hyderabad has the Moosi – Hyderabad wins even though they both stink terribly
5) Chennai offers more to do all over the city, Hyderabad has too few and all concentrated in a very unappealing area – Neither win! Bangalore wins.

Simply put – Bangalore rocks! :)

Monday, March 16, 2009

கன்றாவி பயலே!

I am angry! Seriously I am, I can’t show it, என் என்றால் I never have been able to, but for the sake of my own sanity, this blogpost is of the necessary right now!

I met this கன்றாவி பயலே long ago, six months to be exact and I fell for him. We became good friends and started singing இளையராஜா பாடல்கள் quite early. Now for a ஜுஜுபி like me, singing all these இனிமையான பாடல்கள்'s is equate to ಲೌ…
I am thinking for him also same to same…
But here’s where it all goes ಬೇಜಾರ್!
Apparently his கணவர் ditched him long times ago and left him a ദേവദാസന്‍. Now that is not my fault. My இனிய காதலன் also did that at least 4 years ago after one സുഖമാന 3 year ళౌ! But I got over it, he didn’t and this is six years after his.
Fine! All that is ok, but so much confusion ಯಾಕೆ?

He says he loves me one week ago, and now he says I have never been the one. I knew that from before wonly. And I always kept distance. But after sharing cot and firsht night like scenario with him, of course little more needs will come no?
Maybe I am too தமிழன் and all these friend with benefits – கூட்டாளி type emotions I cannot grasp… but for that I must get this type reaction ಆ?
Anyway, to close it all… For the సమాప్తం of this decade… I decide to give myself more भाव. He may be cute and he may know all my favourite songs and he may be தமிழ், but that doesn’t mean he is my only வசீகரன். I will find one more ಮನ್ಮಧಾ soon and this time I hope my आशिक stays with me என்றென்றும்!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Aditi makes my day!

It’s his birthday today and for the first time in 3 years I am not beside him, bringing it in with him. I’m sure he hasn’t realised it, but I knew it would be the hardest night yet, so I decided to watch a movie, alone. Most of you’ll would say that’s the worst thing to do… But I’m happy I did it. Dilli 6 was one of those movies I would have never watched, simply because I don’t really care for either Abhishek Bachchan or Sonam Kapoor. The movie however helped me get through those painful 3 hours and I ended up enjoying the movie immensely for several reasons…
1) I could cry my heart out in the darkness and the movie had several scenes that elicited such responses…
2) The supporting cast were brilliant – Aditi Rao Hydari at her cherubimic best, and Divya Dutta – worshippable!
3) The music was by AR Rehman. It caught my imagination from ‘GO’…
4) And the cinematography was excellent.
Save a pathetic storyline that could have been crisper and a clichéd narrative, I actually enjoyed the film – a first for a Hindi movie in more than a year…
Happy Birthday Boo and I wish we were still together, but fate has its own plans and neither of us can control that.

Aditi Rao Hydari, the beauty from Sringaaram is back and I am as excited as I can be. I remember being mesmerized by her simple good looks in that film and her nonchalance and confidence in being able to lip sync a whole Tamil movie and do it so well! The Sadir pieces in that movie were breathtaking and her performance shall go down in Tamil Cinema as one of the best portrayals of a Devadasi.
I hope a bright future is in store for this girl as she makes her Hindi debut with Dilli 6 and I also look forward to seeing her in more Tamil films…

ஏன் இந்து மாயமோ, என்னை அறியாமோ?...

Thursday, February 26, 2009

This is Fashion!

Watched the movie Fashion again and all I can say is I am happy I bought the DVD! This was one hell of a re-watch and the movie is really one of the best that released this last year. Do watch the movie if you haven’t and I’m sure you’ll find a reason to love it. I already have and have found one reason too many! Samir Soni being one of the most obvious and many others, including Kangana Ranaut and Priyanka Chopra. Mugdha Godse is a class apart though and her being paired up with Madhur came as no surprise… Wasn’t he gay though?
फैशन का हैं यह जलवा!

Monday, February 23, 2009

அஹம் பிரம்ஹஸ்மி!

ಅಹಂ ಬ್ರಮ್ಹಸ್ಮಿ!

అహం బ్రమ్హస్మి!

അഹം ബ്രംചസ്മി!

Aham Bramhasmi!

अहम ब्रम्हस्मि

Ellam Pugazhum Iraivanukkuh!

எல்லாம் புகழும் இறைவனுக்கு!
To God be all the Glory/Praise!

He said it! Yes, HE DID! An in one split second he created Oscar History, at least for people like me, he did! AR Rehman, my god when it comes to music, lived up to my expectations and did me proud by speaking in Achchuh Tamizh, when he received his Oscar late last night. It might seem trivial to most, especially when you think I am excited about three words that he might have just decided to say, but what you don’t seem to understand is that he did justice to the one million Tamizh brethren all across the globe, hoping he would do something like that.
Tamizhars have always fought for their due. With a language that is well, personally, one of the most evolved, and a civilization that is on par with any of the great olds – we as a people have always been underplayed when it comes to fair representation. Tamizh’s around the world have however, since time immemorial, taken it upon themselves to propagate their way of life and everything it represents, so people would know they exist and partake of what they have to offer and believe me, they have a lot!
We’ve been the first to speak in our own native tongue at the parliament in India, where Hindi was the only other option to English for a long long time. We were the first to start anti-Hindi movements when it was undemocratically made the national language of India (many have now emulated the concept and India is soon on its way to become truly democratic, at least linguistically!), and we’re the second language from India to have received an International Classical Language status, seconding only Sanskrit. Tamizh is also the only Asian language other than Chinese to be recognised as an official language in more than two countries in the world. In India, it is the official language of the state of Tamil Nadu, in Srilanka it is the second national language and in Malaysia and Singapore, it is recognised as an official language that can be used for quite a few legal proceedings too.
But why am I so proud?

Why am I so Tamizh? And why do I associate myself so much with all that this culture and language stands for? I have never felt the need to explain myself, but I shall try to do so…
Tamizh is a part of me. It flows in my blood and has influenced me from a very young age. I may have been born in a small mountainous village in Churachandpur District in Manipur, but ever since I can remember anything, I have been Tamizh.
I grew up in Kotagiri, the hometown of many Kota families who together make up the larger Kota tribe native to the Nilgiris. I was however brought up by an Ilangai Tamizh nanny (Sri Lankan Tamil) who spoke to me in her beautiful accent in all those formative years. It’s not like my mother ignored me, she was always there when I needed her, but she was a headmistress and had lots of other work. So I grew up learning this language that would later shape my life and every decision I took.
The first song that I clearly remember falling in love with was “Chinnuh Chinnuh Vannuh Kuyil” from Mouna Raagam. That song also introduced Revathy into my life – a she has been a motivation and an adonai ever since.
I grew up eventually, again surrounded by everything Tamizh, but my awakenings as a Tamizhar occurred only when I was around 10 years old. A beautiful Iyengaaruh Tamizh fanatic walked into my life then, in the form of a teacher. Her name was Janaki and she was as immaculate to me as the Madurai Meenaatchi. Interestingly she was also from Madurai and spoke Tamizh in an accent that I found truly divine. There was nothing she didn’t know, no Kural she couldn’t recite, no Paadal she couldn’t sing and no history about the Tamizh’s that she couldn’t give me an accurate narrative about. I was a fan. She taught me to love the language, respect its finesse, glorify its prose, romanticize its poetry and more importantly to give my life to understanding, worshipping and conquering it, as ironically places as those words might be.
There has been no turning back. I moved to Manipur where again I encountered another face of Tamizh. It’s connection to the Meitei language. The more ready acceptance of Tamizh over Hindi and the un-ignorable cultural connects. The more recently developing Political connects and the fact that a lot of Meitei revolutionaries respect Tamizhars for their constant fight to preserve their culture and identity. Tamizh has thus evolved into an ideology. An example that people can learn from! So what, if your home country treats you like you aren’t worth it! You can always prove your worth in other ways.
Tamizh’s have not yet asked for the independence of the Tamizh state and that’s a surprise. If I were a leader, Tamil Nadu would have been an independent country over 30 years ago, but our leaders seem to have more sense and I do not mean our political leaders here. We all still believe in India. We believe that she can be a motherland to many and yet be fair. We believe that unity can be achieved in diversity and that mutual respect and co-operation can take this country forward. We still believe in the Indian dream, something that our founding fathers and mothers saw more than 60 years ago and we still have hope.
So Rehman accepting his award and then speaking in Tamizh is a part of this struggle. Yes, he did speak in Hindi too, as it is our national language and maybe he likes the language too! But to be proud of who he is and where he comes from and to so openly speak in his native tongue on stage – is something we will always respect him for. Tamizh has finally conquered the Oscars too, what’s next?

From Gudaloor to Dhanushkodi…
From Pulicat to Kaniyakumari…
Udal Mannukkuh…
Uyir Tamizhukkuh!

கூடலூரில்லுந்து தனுஷ்கோடி வரை...
புலிகட்-இல்லுந்து கன்னியாகுமரி வரை...
உடல் மண்ணுக்கு...
உயிர் தமிழுக்கு!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Where is the Party? Eh, Tamizhnaat-Luh!

This song has been my favourite for such a long time and this blog post is really really late. So here’s to my present caller tune – “Where is the party?” from Silambaattam. I’ve transcribed it to the best of my abilities and couldn’t manage just two lines that are in a thick Chennai accent. Anyone who is a proud Singaaruh Chennai’ite can help me out with those and I will edit and re-post the entry then :)

Hey Dolamaiyya Daalmaiyya Dolamaiyya Daiyya…
Hey Paiyya, Hey Daiyya…
Hey Dumilley Dumilley Dumang Dumang Goiyya…
Hey Dumang Dumang Paiyya…
Hey Dumilley Dumilley Dumang Dumang Goiyya…

Eenamma Pannallaa,
Disco-vukku Povallaa?
Vodka-vuh Podallaa,
Oedi-Paadi Aadallaa?
Aal-dready Neram Aachuh…
Pub-em Dhaaney Moodi Poechuh.

Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Unguh-Ootluh Parrty…
Eh, Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Nammuh-Ootluh Parrty!

Eenamma Pannallaa,
Disco-vukku Povallaa?
Vodka-vuh Podallaa,
Oedi-Paadi Aadallaa?
Aal-dready Neram Aachuh…
Pub-em Dhaaney Moodi Poechuh.

Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Unguh-Ootluh Parrty…
Eh, Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Nammuh-Ootluh Parrty!

Saturday Night-Enno Clubbing Dhaanney…
Adhuh Leven-Thirty-Kke Mooduh-Nna Boring Dhaaney!
Poleesuh Rrombuh Ippoeh Shtrict-Aanuhdhaey…
Nammuh Yooth-Manasuh Rrombuh Vex-Aanuhdhaey!
House Parrty Kooduh Ippoeh Illuhvey Illuhvaa?
Pakaththuh Ootuh-kaaruh Rombuh Rombuh Tholluhvaa?
Yennatha Life-Fuh Idhuh, Yenjaai Panruh Vaisuh Idhuh?

Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Unguh-Ootluh Parrty…
Eh, Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Nammuh-Ootluh Parrty!

Hey Dolamaiyya Daalmaiyya Dolamaiyya Daiyya…
Hey Paiyya, Hey Daiyya…
Hey Dumilley Dumilley Dumang Dumang Goiyya…
Hey Dumang Dumang Paiyya…
Hey Dumilley Dumilley Dumang Dumang Goiyya…

Eenamma Pannallaa,
Disco-vukku Povallaa?
Vodka-vuh Podallaa,
Oedi-Paadi Aadallaa?
Aal-dready Neram Aachuh…
Pub-em Dhaaney Moodi Poechuh.

Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Unguh-Ootluh Parrty…
Eh, Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Nammuh-Ootluh Parrty!

Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Ah Unguh-Ootluh…
Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Huh-huh Yenguh-Ootluh…
Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Naduh-Roetluh ‘Mma!
Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Ah! Tamilnaat-Luh…

Some garbled Chennai Lingo that I cannot transliterate or even understand
(Someone can help me on this! Lol!)

Simbu: ‘Ddaeh! Nee Onniiyoo Kavaluh-Padadhae…
Nammuh Aanaa Tamilnaat-Ike Parrty Dhaa…

Munn-Ellaa Oruh Ponnuh Vennum-Nna…
Naanguh College-Ikkum Bus Stand-Ikkum Poenoem-Inguh! Uh-uh!
Ippella Oruh Ponnuh Vennum-Nna…
Neenguh Club-Kkum Pub-Kkum Dhaa Varanoom-Ingoeh!
Ootlindhuh Pogumboedhuh Ellatheiyyum Marruhkreenguh…
Pub-buh Kulleh Paartha Ellatheiyyum Korruhpeenguh…
Onnu Kuththoe Sollaadhae…
Santhosaththae Kollaadhae…

Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Unguh-Ootluh Parrty…
Eh, Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Nammuh-Ootluh Parrty!

Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Ah Unguh-Ootluh…
Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Ah! Naduh-Roetluh
Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Ah! Tamilnaat-Luh…

Eenamma Pannallaa,
Disco (X4)
Vodka-vuh (X4)
Vodka-vuh Podallaa,
Oedi-Paadi Aadallaa?

Eenamma Pannallaa,
Disco-vukku Povallaa?
Vodka-vuh Podallaa,
Oedi-Paadi Aadallaa?
Aal-dready Neram Aachuh…
Pub-em Dhaaney Moodi Poechuh.

Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Unguh-Ootluh Parrty…
Eh, Vere is the Parrty?
Ah Nammuh-Ootluh Parrty!

Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Ah Unguh-Ootluh…
Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Ah! Naduh-Roetluh
Vere is the Parrty Tonight?
Ah! Tamilnaat-Luh (X4)

Here’s the Youtube link to the song…
Do watch it :)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Samir Soni(ed) alright!

I’ve spoken to him and we chatted all night – and then I was convinced that straight men can be the sweetest things on earth and I’m not kidding!

Let me start where it all began. So I was supposed to get a few interviews with ‘cool’ Mumbai celebs for the DNA Bangalore launch in December. I did eventually speak to almost everyone on my ever-increasing celeb list and most of them were just the normal boring – “I’m doing this film with that director opposite this guy/girl and it promises to be a very new film, very new storyline, never before attempted screenplay…” and all the rest of that hyperbole that we’re all so used to.
But then my eyes fell on this one particular number, a number of someone I was so into and I decided it was time to call. I called and he picked up. The initial formalities over, I got down to business, interviewing him. What I wasn’t expecting was how he reacted. Over the next two hours we chatted and I mean literally chatted about everything I’d wanted to ever ask him. This was no interview, so much so, it seemed more like two over-enthu film buffs having an extremely animated conversation. He was so open about everything, his choice of roles, how playing a gay man felt, the kind of man he’d be attracted to if he was gay and the rest of it…

I will transcribe the interview soon, or at least parts of it that I took down in random notes and scribbles. The interview never got published, because I walked out of DNA in exactly 48 hours post the cool interview, swearing to quit the tainted walls of Journalism forever… but Samir Soni has remained one of the sweetest people I ever interviewed. He even called me later that night to chat and that was just so cool. We spoke on the whole for a good whole 4 hours that day and thus I think I have a right to have a crush on him… A big one at that…

This is one of the amazing portfolio pics he sent me for the article…

Isn’t he just so damn adorable?
Where are men like this, these days?
Has god stopped making them anymore?

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Ende Juligai…

“Udaiyoeduh Pirrakkuhvillai
Unarrvoeduh Pirandhuhvittoem…”
உடையோடு பிறக்கவில்லை உணர்வோடு பிறந்தவிட்டோம்

It’s 12:07 am and it’s already another Monday. The world is all prepared to face another busy week while I sit in this corner that I’ve learnt to so comfortably occupy. Something’s missing, my mind tells me as I listen to Pehli Nazar playing softly from the cool ‘creative’ speakers beside me… Softly kneading this already flattened and over-used heart.
Thanks to ashkaya.moksh this song is now a part of me… I remember hitting it off with Eastea Nikimoel thanks to this song. We both loved it and eventually learnt to love each other. Aishoos two keeps, we were – always kind of wary of the other… Wondering which of us meant more.

The story of me and Aishu goes back surprisingly to only three short years, when fate and the sheer joblessness of me, led to the discovery of ‘the other side’ – that part of the publishing industry that I wouldn’t wish in the career of anyone I like.
The boringness and unchangeable status quo of Christ College was getting to me during my second year at college and so the first internship option that came my way seemed to be the perfect godsend. Naresh Rao walked in and tells us about this new relationship magazine that’s starting off in Bangalore, something that Monsieur Edison was very excited about. Now, Monsieur Ed has always had a way of getting CC to react, and this was one of those treacherous times. Two days later, a pleasant and relatively hot looking guy walks into class. Vinod Srinivasan is the name, we are told, and I am already salivating thanks to my incontrollable ‘thing’ for Tamils and the educated kind at that! I don’t remember anything he said, but decided to apply for the internship anyway. Less than a week later we were at his office, somewhere in the middle of nowhere (read HSR layout) and I was surprised to find an old senior from school in the same office. We meet Aishwarya Kannan, sub-editor for the first time and her colleague Sai Vidhya Kannan – they weren’t related and that was the biggest surprise to begin with. So what was this superbly covert secret publication that we were going to be a part of called… Any guesses? It was called Confetti – so pretty no? And believe me the moment I heard the name, my gay sensibilities were touched. I was all ready to be initiated and ready to roll in the mud. But it wasn’t that easy, not at all! Several meetings later, I must add, in locations that one wouldn’t even expect, comme ca Barista Koramangala 5th Block and the like, we finally managed to get some work done. Imagine a dark glassed dominatrix looking Aishoo with her band of amateur in-college writers at her disposal. Oh! Believe me she knew what she was doing. She killed our stories and kept making most of us feel like shit! I don’t know how and when, but somewhere down the line, I was asked to write a piece on ‘Relationships that never take off’ and I wrote ‘It ended before it even began’ – a piece that’s featured on this blog . That’s when things changed. She (Aishoo) was impressed, of course not before she insisted I make it almost twice its size! Several attempts later, a very vulnerable Romal Singh presented his final piece and it was praised. Amen! The next piece I was assigned to write was a piece on gay sex and another one on fetishes. The fetishes story was published in the next months issue and I was quite tickled. But this is not about me, this is about Aishoo. So here’s back to her…

I broke all ice with her when one day, I had to show her the gay scene in the city and offered a glimpse into it through g4m. The poor brahminical girl was obviously quite shaken and I guess she even found it quite revolting. But that led us to start talking and I soon realised we shared so much in common. She was so like me, like my female counter-part. She was funny, serious, crack, mad, wise, humble, proud, listening, caring, self-conscious and sweet, all at the same time.
Jump cut to a month later, when she was finding it very difficult to continue at Confetti and she called me one day while I was shopping in FabIndia and says she needs to talk. Soon she’s there, looking as resplendent as ever and then breaks the news. She was leaving due to differences with the management. I thought that would be the end of everything, we still weren’t the best of friends. But fate decided to prove me wrong. We kept in touch and grew fonder of each other. A month or so later she moved on to Pratika – a PR agency that was just taking its baby steps in the city and God alone knows how she remembered some vague conversation where I had said I’d wanted to work part-time somewhere. In no time, I was working as her assistant and having a blast. We had our lows, our bouts of depression, but we helped each other through them. She now knows I’m depressed even before I do and vice versa, not to mention our other similarities that includes a very strong gaydar. She was indeed one of the best people to work with and just like that we became the best friends ever. Pratika helped us discover each other more fully as people and I’m happy it happened. Her life has moved on since and so has mine, but today when I sat down to write this blog post, that was initially dedicated to her, but soon evolved into an account and a narrative as close to my heart as well, my heart! I realised that Aishoo is the ONLY girl who’s ever KNOWN me. She knows me better than I do myself. She’s everything rolled into one – my personal sister, matron, surrogate mother, counsellor, best friend, possible lover (if I ever turn straight), fashion consultant, girlfriend, boyfriend, confidante and well-wisher. She’s also been my boss and is the only one who can boss me till date!

So here’s to you my louver, my flouer. Three years of the best relationship I could have asked for. You’ve been there for me at every stage, every second, every moment and through every joyous discovery. We’ve woofed, meowed and meoufed guys together, slept in the same bed, spent all night talking about, practically nothing and just been the best of friends with each other.

I am who I am today, very much because of you. I may have shown you the joys of everything Tamil, but you’ve shown me the joys of life – the fact that friends can be so so much more. I wish I could be there for you in every possible way and I know we’ll make the perfect couple, but as the song from Nammavar reminds me – “We weren’t born just with our bodies, we were born through feelings” and that rebirth of feelings is all thanks to you. I couldn’t ask anyone for more.

As I feel I’ve finally done justice to this blogpost, I pay attention to my ‘creative’ speakers blast Mundhinam Paarthaen from Vaaranam Aayiram into my ears and all I can think of is the apt lyric that says…

Iththanai Naalaaghuh,
Unnai Naan Paaraamal,
Yaenguh Dhaan Poenaenoeh,
Naatkallum Veen-Aaanadhaey…

You’re my desi girl Aishoo :)
Dekh Lakh Lakh Aisey-Vaisey girl…
Ain’t nobody like my Desi girl!
Who’s the hottest girl in the world?
My Desi girl! My Desi Girl! :)

I now feel well-spent!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Zapped into living!

Was I zapped? Yes I was and I’m terribly happy that I actually was.
‘Cause here were a bunch of us artists who’ve always wanted to do something with movement, something arbitrary, something that would lead, quite simply put, to breaking structured forms and yet creating new ones that do not hinder the performer from the expression. Somewhere down the line, we lost ways. One became a theatre activist and a representative of a media collective, a documenter by choice; the other, a theatre performer, with a pen that is indeed mightier than the sword and a talent that sure defeats any sword on earth: copywriting par excellence; and the third, the author of this blog: a wayward journalist who is still trying to find his feet, grappling with theatre, ghosts of dance, an uncontrollable gab and several other issues that will literally need forever to even list or correct, half way through.
Here we were in this temple of local culture, with half hearted paintings of ‘the gurus’ of a much-loved and often over-lauded form of classical singing, right at the doorway and a very ignorable and at times silly architectural design, that often is the only thing that sets it apart. They reserve seats for management, RIGHT IN FRONT! Which god forsaken venue does that anymore? The organisers then double the ticket prices and we pay through our noses, literally. What happened to Free Art? Where did the entire hullabaloo go? Is the city no more a home to free art?
Oh! That was a decade ago? Damn it!
So we avoid all the artsy fartsy thingamajigs who are lolling around and pretending pretensions, much like my other favourite breed, the directorial dramatics club – something that the three of us were quite pissed off about at that very moment.
People mingled, people talked, people preened and people walked, but nobody had any clue what awaited us and if they did, they did wisely to shut up and act all naïve. The sweethearts! The deafening bell rang and we rush in, chose appropriate seats, till we’re asked to sit in front – the cheaper tickets were sold out huh? Slimebags! We soon settled down, not before we noticed the one lone performer on stage helping usher the crowds in. Who would have even guessed that she was already performing? Not us for sure. We like the total dimwits we were, giggled and praised her for her superb sense of calm. Ushering the audience in – all actors ought to do that. Isn’t that the easiest way to accomplish that much spoken of, audience connection? The much enunciated phrase that is always a part of a director’s dramatic repertoire!
The performance begins. She teases us, giving us a good solid ten minutes of random (we assumed) slightly demented faces and as said documenter claimed, schizophrenic moments! And then she began what wouldn’t end ever, at least for the next hour and a half. She began to move and we all moved with her. The remaining performers soon were on stage too and with the first sequence they had earned a loyal audience. A brilliant play of light, describing almost everything one wanted it to describe for themselves, got the whole performance to a brilliant start. My queer eyes of course noticed the beautiful bodies on stage. All the men seemed well-hung (they were in tights! Hallelujah!) and one of them seemed quite irregularly hairy. The sequences only got better, with amazingly choreographed pieces and music that only left you, in the words of a simple man, spellbound.
The performance was called ‘Could I just draw your attention to the brevity of life’ and was performed by the Compagnie Philippe Saire. It was fantabulous! What stood out the most was the subtle mix of narrative, reality, fantasy, erotica and fluidity in a mellifluous combination that hasn’t been perfected or even attempted on a Bangalore stage before.
I was enthralled by the sheer contrasts that were being represented in each sequence, be it in the highly image-evoking-based descriptive form of narrative-through-movement or the more perceivable paradoxes of emotion enacted and emotion exuded. A smile was never just a smile and was often as sinister as an evil smile could get.
The audience was their toy as they played with us, shocking us, forcing us to laugh at situations we didn’t want to, testing our patience, making us question our intellect and most importantly challenging the notion in everyone’s mind that they could possibly pre-determine the context and the possible flow of representations. Nothing was guessable and nothing archaic or cliché was ever encountered. Popular icons were reduced to subverting symbols and subtle movements to mind-shattering mirror images of life.
This was life as anyone could see it. Arbitrarily portrayed but always making perfect sense in everyone’s own mind, in one’s unique way of thinking. Nobody could have dismissed it as being too elitist or vague for normal consumption. The images were apt and described exactly what they had to. What was more impressive was the amateurish air that the performance took on. An air that was much intellectualised over and stank of heavy practice sessions. The efforts that went into not-making-it-look-practiced ought to be commended.
I personally loved the disco ball sequence that connected the audience more deeply to the performer. There was an option thrown open for communication and interaction, I assumed, but didn’t have the guts to react to it.
Which brings me back to the prologue to this description; the uselessness of the lives of us three fools. We really had no idea about what we we’re doing with our lives, all thanks to the brilliance of the performance and the ability it had to take our breath(s) away. However as the magic settled in and the whole performance was a thing of the recent past, it dawned on my fragile soul, that the whole message was actually just that!
Life is brief, shot-lived (ha-ha!) and the lesson was to learn that we need to do things instead of cribbing about them. We need to move on and not get bogged down by things that life throws at us. There’s nothing definite, there’s no right or wrong – there’s just life and the urge to live it, which ought to be the biggest priority for everyone. There’ll always be the tempters, the dominators, the ditchers, the users, the haters, the ignorers, the evil doers and we will be these very things in someone else’s life. So all of us need to focus on the finer aspects of life, ignore the bad and indulge in the good, for life is indeed a short journey and you get to live it just once. You cannot control it, it controls you, so live with it and live well. Lesson well learnt!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Deep Sin

Deeper I fall…

I thought I could wean off you, make myself learn that love is not everything and once again I proved myself wrong. Yes we drove together to our common destinations, sat side by side and always had ‘normal’ written all over our foreheads in big yellow flashing letters – but I always picked up intention. If someone looked at you and raised an eyebrow or let out that relish of a smile – I knew what it meant. You might have been off-guard, but I saw those amorous eyes as they looked into your eyes. Those supposedly innocent friendly pats, those mimics of human love and all those jokes passed of as camaraderie. I sighed inside and ate a part of an aching heart every time it happened. Like a self-consuming cannibal, I chose to let my love rot away and give you all the attention you needed – unasked for and never reciprocated.

I was fine.

And then today, like the wrath of the heavens pouring out against me, at a moment where vulnerability defined me in the essence – it all changed…
I fell at your feet, seeking forgiveness and refuge – dramatised it to every inch of perfection I could moulder – but as I looked up into your deep brown eyes, my whole body came to life. It was electric, it was fabulous and it was mind-blowing, all-giving and perverted. I wanted to have you there, right there, against your own wishes. To let myself indulge in you, to be ravaged, torn and used, all fully conscious of the fact that it is only fantasy and might never see a tomorrow – and yet I yearned, like I’ve never yearned before. I feel sick, like my insides have been turned out and he screamed again… How I wished you would have caressed my hair, held my chin up, looked into my eyes and just kept looking, till eternity…

I am love-struck once more and this time I hate myself for being.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Status Quo

Of clouds and climbers…
A night of good music, a night I hoped would never end – of sweet memories that riddled themselves like green climbers around a never ending pillar of dreams…
I hovered high above this body of mine, watching a 22 year old male cuddle up on the divan, content with the world around him, only yearning for the company of a someone who could share that intimate space with him and yet limit their presence to inhibit an intrusion. Mellifluousness is what he was looking for; much like those million songs he called his own. Those amazing compositions by maestros who mastered the craft of containing his every emotion in 6 minutes of pure passion, packaged and sold as simple dreams for people to regress to. This was life as he knew it, this was life as he wanted it to be, this was what kept him happy. This is what he now knew he was.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Mani Ratnam heroine!

He: So you’re gay?
Me: Yes.
He: So you’re seeing someone?
Me: No.
He: Were you seeing someone?
Me: Yes.
He: So why did you’ll break up?
Me: Just.
He: Are you looking for someone?
Me: No.
He: Why?
Me: Why?
He: Just.
Me: Ok.
He: So?
Me: Nothing.
He: So why aren’t you seeing someone?
Me: Just.
He: Just…
Me: Just!
He: Why?
Me: Because.
He: What you think you’re some Mani Ratnam heroine?
Me: What?!
He: All your one word answers!
Me: Oh!
Me: Sorry.

And I burst into a laugh that came from those extremities in me that had forgotten how to laugh. Mani Ratnam Heroine! Goodness me!

Monday, February 02, 2009

Say goodnight and go…

I wanted him to stay over, I wanted to see if I could take his presence with me, in my house, in my bedroom, on my bed, for one whole night and deep down I did hope for magic to happen, but as life has taught me well, I wasn’t very hopeful of anything happening…
The night passed and the moon waned as he sat and poured out his sorrow filled heart-tales to me. I tried hard to be the unbiased listener and offered my opinion whenever I could, all the while only wishing I could have been the answer that would end all his miseries. I wished I was his type and secretly aspired to be someone he would fall for in that split second,
but eventually reality hit me where it hurt the worst.
We sat and shared our lives in the only art we’d conquered together – speech. And I don’t know how and when, he was in my bedroom, on my bed, on the side that I have always imagined my lover to be… I sat beside him hoping to be there for him emotionally in some way, and then out of the blue, he beckoned me… He asked me to lay my head on his chest, and I did. I almost choked with emotion, but couldn’t let him see how vulnerable I still was. This was his moment. I lay there, a million songs playing in my head and a million emotions making me almost go dizzy. Then I breathed and let the moment settle in.
I could hear his heartbeat and I sighed and hoped within that it would one day, be mine. And then it struck me. That was it. I felt no more.
I didn’t feel that sense of elation.
That amazing high one feels when one is sexually attracted to someone…
Had I stopped liking him? Or had I miraculously moved on? I wasn’t sure… two hours later, I am still not sure. I don’t know what changed for me in that moment. I now know that I am not willing to give me life away so easily to anyone who would value me any lesser than anyone else. I realised that the only man who would turn me on, would be someone who knows how to show me that I matter. One domino has been hit and the rest will fall down soon.
He has helped me in ways he doesn’t even understand.
We walked under the moonlight and into the darkness that lay ahead.
I know I love his company,
but am I willing to love someone who makes me feel non-existent?
I knew I could, I don’t know if I can and if I ever will anymore…
I need love and so does he. I will work towards finding him his love and in these moments of final stability, I hope I shall find mine. I do not want to grow old feeling any less than anyone else and this is the only way to make a beginning.
There was nothing left. A good friendship only turned stronger and a beautiful love that was so unquestioning has faced its first obstacle.
There was nothing more I could say other than, say goodnight and go.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Culture my foot! All bleddy Hooligans only!

മ്യര്‍ ഹൂലിഗന്സ്

Culture my foot! All bleddy Hooligans only!

What is with the Sri Ram Sene? Why is our government so quiet? I always thought I would never be a biased freak, but the BJP government seems to be proving that they can only propagate mindless communal violence when they’re around.
Is this Hindutva? If so, then why should it pertain to other communities? I am Christian and come from a purely Christian family. We’ve been Christian for four generations now… How does Hindutva pertain to us? Why are these rules for us?
Are we a Hindu nation, is this really that literally a Hindu-Stan?
Whose culture are they referring to when they say this is not Indian culture? Some ancient culture that they aren’t upholding themselves, or some newer culture that they’d like to propagate as their own. And to think that kids my age are taking up arms for such causes! I get it when a Kashmiri kid or a Manipuri kid takes to arms and joins a militant group. They represent repressed communities. Communities that have been oppressed forever! But what’s all this madness about Hindu dharm being under threat?
Threat from whom? Themselves I suppose. Brahmins are still Brahmins, and Shudras still Shudras – instead of solving those social issues, I guess they’d rather fight an invisible non-existent enemy. The Congress may have its faults, but at least it understands the complexities that this state and its people represent. The identity of the Kannadiga in itself is a fragile concept and now we have the Hindu, Christian and Muslim Kannadiga to further divide us. Is this what the present powers call divide and rule, or is this just pure pride at being the largest in numbers.

Are we safe?

Is my community safe? Is anyone safe… I guess this country has never answered those questions and prefers not to!

Where is this nation that is a mere concept heading to…
The Lord alone knows, and I put my trust in him alone!

This is my life!

I have decided to face the world…
I will learn to overcome these tears…
I will look at them as the only gifts you were able to give me…
I will move on…
I will fall in love again…
I will discover what true love is…
I will not lose hope…

You thought me unworthy…
The world doesn’t…
I still have people who care…
And always will…

It’s refreshing to rediscover the old me…
The special someone who had time for everyone equally…
That young boy whose mother was everything…
Whose friends were always more than just that!

This is my promise to myself…
To live life to its fullest…
To stop for no one,
Till they will to live my life with me.

Amen indeed.

ಇದು ನನ್ನ ಜೀವನ!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

When I open these eyes…

It’s 2 am in the morning,
and I just found the song I’ve been searching for,
for at least a month now.
Maybe it’s a sign that change and luck have come my way…
I welcome them with arms wide open…
Kann Vizhithaal is my prayer to the universe, to my destiny and to myself and my saviour. A hope that everything goes right, henceforth…
A hope that this time, my sadness and grief over losing someone who meant so much to me, might actually help me learn. I hope I grow old enough, one day… to evolve into someone mature enough to forgive him – but even if I don’t… I’ll know that my eyes are now open, and that in itself is triumph…
To a new beginning, to new friends, to love, to life and to me…
May my life be a little simpler now…

Do listen to the song below (at the end of the page)
Some of the lyrics that touched me the most are transcribed below…

...கண் விழித்தால் வெண்ணிலவு...
கை நிறைய காதலர்கள்...
ரகசியம் பேசு தேவதைகள் ஹோ...
தேவதைகள் ஹொ... தேவதைகள்...
எந்தன் கனவில்...
எத்தனை எத்தனை எத்தனை நனவு...
யாரை கேட்பேன்?
யாரை கேட்பேன் ஒ...

...வானவில் வரையும் வானம்...
மழையிலே நனையும் தோட்டம்...
கரைகளின் காதிலே...
நதி சொல்லும் வார்த்தைகள்...
இன்பமோ? இன்பமே...
இன்பமோ? இன்பமே...

May we all find what we’re looking for!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

So close, you are, yet so far…

We spent three days together and in those precious moments I saw my whole life unfurl… As we tried to find a mid-point in between our conflicting destinies and overcame some obstacles that we created ourselves, all I want to tell you my love is, my world is calm when you are in my arms. I am alive with you around and even though I know we’re so close, I can’t ignore how far we’re from reaching that famous happy end…

Watching the sun set over your city on that undiscovered corner of that beautiful hill in the middle of nowhere, I realised that I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I lost you at this point. I don’t mind waiting forever for you to realise what I mean to you, but I’d rather live off dreams than lose you in reality forever…

As a mismatched couple on Hemakuta hill, facing the gopuram of a lord I do not worship yet respect, I realised that I am already yours. Like a devadasi, who binds herself to the unseen and unfelt – a belief has become real enough for me to hold on to. You now reside there and in that sanctum sanctorum, that extremely divine place, have I left my heart and all its demands. You owe me nothing, I owe you almost all – and that’s how it will remain to be…

Take time, my love and discover who you want to be. The world is indeed fast, but time will always find space for the yearning. It has found you and so I beg you to use it wisely. Relish and rediscover the real you, someone lost in three years of aimless wandering. May this be your 40 days and 40 nights of that divine test that turned many a human into a saint. May you discover peace and self-understanding in a way that it empowers you from within.

May you discover the real you…

So I bid by goodbye for now, for even though we were close in waiting, we are indeed far from our divergent realities. I pray our paths confluence one day, and then I hope you will believe that I let you go because I knew for forever, that all I ever wanted was to hold you, so close…

Friday, January 02, 2009

New Yearsu!

It’s the New Year and my new year’s resolution is like every other year, to do more justice to this mad space. The New Year has definitely started off well, and as close friend aishu goobey was saying, what you do on the first day kind of continues all through the year, yeah! Which means, I’ll be travelling all year through, and that’s enough to make me scream and shout and put off one koothu.
So yesterday found me at Villa No 13 – that inscrutably supposedly chic villa in namma Navdha’s Thubarhalli. We were supposed to be a gang of 15 peoples, but only 10 turned up, but so what? we had enough to eat. Radio Verve maggu Shreyas had brought a friend and his fiancée too, and we all generally had a good time. Several failed attempts at getting everyone to dance and a superb dip recipe later, we were sprawled on the cute kiddy mattresses with perverted softie toy pillows as our parddners in crime.
So we played DC and then tried playing Truth or Dare, but then when you’ve known everyone there for at least 2 years, there’s just that much you can get out of them kaada?
Binu and Aditya were the bum couple and god bless their love for each other. Droogie called up and then Freddie also called up, could I have asked for more? I think Freddie is finally falling for me, after two years of the most roller coaster relationship ever, he finally ends every conversation with a soft yet totally audible and heart warming “I love you” – Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!
He even told me my sexy voice was getting him into trouble, when he called me this morning! I am losing it… I am losing it, It is losing me… I am lost.
Okay, back to narration of a lifetime. So we played gamesu and then we also sang a few mad crack jokesu, but the crowning glory of the evening was the pathetic sula champagne. Pliss to be throwing in dustbin if peoples ever bring you Sula champagne. It is cheap for a reason, let it be known!
At 4 we all decide to drive out for breakfast, and so while Navdha cribs herself to sleep, we all push off avec just arrived Jamed Genggu, and drive off to the cool Ramanagarams. Whet’s funny is, I was just shouting at the top of my livers, about how these uncreative Bengalooruvas will all be heading to CCD (with all the pseudo Ooomph I can get into pronouncing the three dreaded letters) on the Mysore Road! So we self condemned uncreative Bengalooruvas headed out and then landed at Kamat Loka Ruchi for brekfashtu. I had one yemmy set dosa, and PDDKR had a mooda idli. Everyone else had Pooris! We all had some sooper kaapi before we hit the road. However, not before we had a stupid porkinaathan driver spoil the New Year morning for us. Sum-sumney he came in our way and caused the most complicated drive out possible. Whatte bum! On top of all that he looks at the car and seeing my elegantly carved “Mathew is a bitch!” (in Tamil) thinks we are all Tamil! I was all ready to brandish my sword of tamil-ness before, he cowers seeing my Bhadrakali eyes and moves out of the way!
Just then full Illaiyaraja moment happened! We are backing out in red kutti alto (ayyio! Whatte small car it is no? has anyone ever realised?) and I see the sun slowly rising and suddenly “Yamunai Aatrilaey” plays off in mindsu. As I cognially drool at Shobana and hum the song, light bulb flashes and I ask if we can go to Srirangapattana? All say yes and we head out…
Bollywood music a la “Yeh Dostiiii”, playing in the background, we drive to Srirangs and all the while we’re giggling at Mathew’s new found passion of bird dancing! He flaps his wings and soars, all the while my uyir in my mouths hoping he doesn’t decapitate his hands (lol!) what an impossible phrase!
Suddenly like one Mani Ratnam movie, everything goes slow, and we that is Vishy the Fishy, PDDKR and me notice James Genggu staring at us. They are on some rumble strips (haha!) and have crashed into a city taxi indica. What follows is a mad crack bargain and a final payment of Rs 4,500 towards damages.
Again Yeh Dostii happens and we’re on our way…
We reach Srirangapattana, disturb a Madrasa in progress, buy stupid eveready batteries that will die out after two clicks on cool Fujifilm camera and check out the whole fort and everything within. We discover the Kaveri and sit and watch the Train pass over the Wellesley bridge and let the cool breeze filter through our sub-craniums.
Illaiyaraaja came to life once more, and I sing the song, not before noticing a Brahmin and a well-educated (I am assuming) Tulu couple and their extremely fair daughters come there for a Pooja.
We then head out to the ignored Obelisk and discover hidden steps to somewhere instead. It’s top secret so I can’t tell you. All I can say is I am now officially a part of the tantalising three! Yeah!!!!
Next up is palace on other side of road and then the last sangam a km further down the road there. We re-discover my fav place at Gumbaz and sit on the well-shaded terrace till Vishy the Fishy has his share of Gumbaz moments.
Sangam was dirty and well too crowded. What was cooler was the Meitei Bamon couple I saw there. They had a fairly my aged son, hot and all, shirtless for a few minutes, and that was enough to make me sit and gape. Shirtless, lean, Manipuri men! Need I ask for more? The family was so meitei, it reminded me of Manipur. What were they doing there? Is a question that never got solved, till we drove back and I saw a Gosai Ghat on the way! Tube light and choke flickered and I connected. Shantidas Gosai brought Vaishnavism to Manipur, maybe he had something to do with this place? Need to figure out more…
We then headed back to Namma Bengalooru and on the way ate at Otal Haripriya (a family fav with PDDKR, as her mom’s name is Priya and her brother Hari!) and we were convinced the bill would be more than the cash we had. Several ideas on who’ll wash what if we didn’t have the cash later, we ate a scrumptious Mandya mealsu and headed to city. I reached homesu at 7.30 pm and then surundified some dosais which I ate with home made pulsu and thakkali chutneysu.
Whatte day no? Thet’s why I’m thought of blogging it. Oh! I sang mad crack songs and did many impersonations for Droogie as he baked the bread for his family that night. I am remembering he was making Idlis for his sister Divya and that he said he has two more admirers like me its seems!
I will fight, I say. Is my discovery, why I must let go, say!