Tuesday, May 31, 2005


It is a well understood fact as to exactly how small this whole crazy planet is. I have experienced it many a time over the course of my inconsequential existence - both in the real world and in the blog world. So, what I am about to relate does not necessarily 'take the cake' in terms of its freak occurrence, but rather in terms of the magnitude of freakishness.

So there I was, bored to death at work on a Thursday. I run through the list of blogs, looking for updates and or new comments. In a moment of desperation, lest I die of boredom right there, I sent out a 'aren't you bored, lets make friendship' email to a fellow blogger, who we shall call Kanika. She being the kind, equally bored soul that she is, replied. It quickly became a Gmail chat, and after a few a/s/l like exchanges, we realized that we had a whole bunch of common friends in the real world. The conversation went something like this:

Kanika: So do you remember Sanjay from your college ?
Me: Yeah of course ! I know him really, really well !
Kanika: Yeah, Sanjay is the ex-boyfriend of yours truly ;)
Me: Whoa !! So you know Panchi !! You know my dear Panchi ?!?!
Kanika: Of course !! One of my best friends in school !

And so on. I would go on, but coming up with false names for all the people involved would be near impossible - it was like everyone we know. And vice versa. Anyways, she stumbles upon my Flickr site and-

Kanika: Hey ! Is that Christine in that picture ?
Me: WHAT !! Don't tell me you know her too !! But how ? She has no connections to the other crowd !!
Kanika: YES !! I DO !!! We had mutual friends in college !

Yeah, like I said, freaky. Its like this intricate web of connections, all springing forth from all sorts of directions ! Trying to think about it, throws my head up in knots. Many a drunken post-party conversation has been spent in trying to catch up with friends and friends of friends and friends of friends of friends and so on. In any case, it was great fun hanging out with the crew again - a nice mix of the old and the new (new to me atleast). Its nice to know that along the way, you have made enough friends to last a lifetime or two ! Enough to be able to sit back and relax in the company of people you have just met, but feel like you have known for years.

To Kanika and the rest of the crew, thanks a ton ! It was an awesome weekend !

In other news, the rollercoaster ride that I've been on, shot to new heights and is currently stabilizing. Somehow thrilling just doesn't quite capture it any more !

Thursday, May 26, 2005

The Saga of Anakin Skywalker

I remember the first time I saw Star Wars. I remember my cousin running into my room with this VHS tape, bouncing against the walls with excitement, yelling at me to watch it. I remember him telling me, in a rushed breath nearing hyper-ventilation, about this great story of intergalactic star fights and a princess and a Rebellion... and most importantly, the most kick-ass villian ever conceived - Darth Vader. I remember hearing that name for the first time - it instilled a sense of fear in me that to this day, gives me goosebumps. I hadn't even seen the movie and I was already afraid of telling Darth Vader that the Rebels had escaped ! The name introduced the boy in me to the notion of using fear as a motivator. It was and still is, in my opinion, the best movie bad guy name ever !

I watched the movie and was, as is the case with any teen who watches Star Wars for the first time around, completely blown away. The special effects were awesome, the story was something out of this world. But in the end, it wasn't any of those things that stuck with me. It was the names. Luke Skywalker. Princess Leia. Han Solo. Obi-Wan Kenobi. The Millenium Falcon. Darth Vader. Those names set me wondering, more than the characters themselves, about the universe they lived in. The universe that we got such a tantalizingly fleeting glimpse of. The names were such perfect representations of the characters themselves - Luke Skywalker, innocent, young, destined for great things, Han Solo - a rebel, a world weary fighter. They set a young teen on a journey that finally came full circle this past weekend. It has been a good ride, albeit with a few rude bumps along the way. Inspite of all of George Lucas's sufferings, Star Wars still remains one the most defining sagas in movie history.

It is the the saga of Darth Vader. He is Star Wars. Episode I: The Phantom Menace to Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. It is the story of Anakin Skywalker - a name that I will forever associate with glorious tragedy, of having the potential to attain levels of greatness others couldn't even dream about, but instead falling, twisted beyond darkness, to the greatest of depths. Anakin, a name, that will forever resonate with the anguish, pain and immense responsibility of confused youth, of love, of destiny and in the end, of hope.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005


A phone call that drove the last nail into a coffin that long needed closure. A best friend, getting a taste of how my life has changed. A best friend, liking what he sees. New friends and new expriences. Entertaining theatre. Thrilling auto rides in near flash flood conditions. Arsenal winning. Great beer and better music. Scrumptuous vegetarian thalis. A race that bore witness to the last days of a dying horse. Seedy night clubs. A moderately entertaining finale to one of the greatest sagas in the history of science fiction. More rain and more powercuts. A dying project at work.

And amidst all this, a thrilling new roller coaster ride.

That was my weekend. I can breathe now.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Sing me a memory

Over the days, thanks to the current traffic conditions prevailing in Bangalore, my iPod has been doing overtime. On these rides, that seem like one unending crawl towards the red light, the iPod becomes much more than just an MP3 player. It becomes my own personal time machine. The powerful scent of memories that spears through my senses, as the familar tune comes to life. The faces that fill my vision. A couple of numbers from the ever changing, ever growing soundtrack of my existence -

Lets get rocked - Def Leppard - Bhatty and the summer before I joined college. Those evenings we would sit in his room, after having lost yet another cricket match to Subbu and Co., his neighbor's huge labrador, Cleo, sniffing our crotches every now and then, sipping some of that awesome lemonade...

Where is the love ? - Black Eyed Peas - Ever since I read this, I can't seem to be able to listen to this song, without a mental picture of her, bopping around to it.

Baby got back - Sir Mix-A-Lot - The boys. In March 2004, me and the boys rented a Chevy Astro and decided to take a little road trip. To Iowa. I only wish you could have seen the look on the face of the man at the gas station, right smack dab in the mid of mid-western United States, when he saw an Astro pull up, and 8 brown folk get out of it. Priceless... oh, and we guys learnt all the lines of this song over that trip. And I sing this song now, to T. For obvious reasons ;)

Wonderwall - Oasis - Umm... yeah... lets not go there, shall we ?

When the tigers broke free - Pink Floyd - Reddy and Sam. The time me and Reddy sat up all night, working on The CD. And The Poster. Or the time... no... wait... can't talk about that one. Or maybe... nope... can't say anything about that either. Damn, I don't think we have ever done anything that I can ever safely admit to having done !

I see you baby - Groove Armada - Do I really have to spell it out ?

There are oh! so many more. But, I'm tired now, and my battery is running out. Recharge. Both myself and the iPod.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Wham, Bam, Thank You Maam

  • Went out Saturday night with Shree [a fine lady I met about two months ago] and a bunch of her friends. Nice times were had by all. Dancing, drinking, puffing away on my Don Diego and hookas. She made dancing with glasses on, look cool. Hats off to you, missy !
  • If you have longer than shoulder length hair and are in a crowded club, realise that your hair will get wet and sticky because of the smoke and the warmth. And if you plan on flailing it about, please, have a care for the poor soul dancing next to you. Wet, clumped hair stings.
  • I had the most entertaining conversation imaginable with an auto-wallah today. An excerpt follows -
Driver: Saar... aap padthe ho ya kaam karthey ? (Do you study or work?)
Me: Kaam karthey. (I work)
Driver: Where you from, saar ?
Me: Madras.
Driver: Appo, tamil theriyumma ? (Then, you know Tamil ?)
Me: Yes.
Driver: I know 6 language. English, Hindi, Kannda, Telugu, Malayalam, Marathi. Name, saar ?
Me: Vignesh
Driver: My name is Baasha, saar. Manik Basha. Namma big Rajni fan, saar !
Me: Oh ! Good !
[And so the interrogation continues. What do my parents do ? Where do I work ? Do I smoke ? Do I drink ? Do I eat meat ? and so on. Soon, we get to more interesting matters]
Basha: You have lover, saar ?
Me: Ummm... no.
Basha: I have two, saar. One arranged marriage. One I arranged.
Me: Ummm... good ?!?
Basha: One boy. Other one girl. Saar marriage over ?
Me: No.
Basha: Enjoy saar now. I am sex baasha saar. Now, marriage. If I feel bejaar I go to college, saar. Mount Carmel, RV, sit outside and watch, saar.
Me: Excellent !
[By now, looking for the camera hidden in the auto, recording my reactions. More details about this two timing life followed. Details that I could have done without. And finally we reach our destination]

Basha: Thank you, saar.[shaking hands] Basha, saar, Manik Basha.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Sometimes, when I look deep in your eyes, I swear I can see your soul

Memories of the past few days are so crowded into my head that it almost seems impossible to separate one from the other. The horrid drive through the Western Ghats. The heat of a small West Karnataka town. The crappy showerhead. The extravagant wedding. The smell of jasmine.

She was looking right at me, as I walked up to her, with the rest of our friends. She smiled as I spoke to the man who would take her away from me. As I congratulated him, telling him what a wonderful person she is. She laughed at our jokes, pleased that we both got along so well. She looked so proud. She looked so happy.

As I handed her her gift, our finger brushed against each others'. I looked up at her eyes, to see them welled up with tears. Of happiness at having found the person who completes her. Of sadness at having to leave. Tears that meant a whole lot more than a smile could ever convey, to show how much we mean to each other.

Here's to someone I have know for what seems my entire life. My best friend. Thank you, for always being there. For always arguing. For always understanding.

Thank you, for sharing your soul and letting me share mine.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Put a song in this heart of mine...

Ah, my first really buzzed post-party post. I'm following formats set by the other great bloggers (I wanted to link someone else to the word 'bloggers' but I'm way too buzzed right now to even bother with it) out there, who regularly have better, more fun lives than the rest of us do (though some of them claim that it is work so its not really fun, it just sounds like fun). The format being, start talking about what happened over the evening, and use a song as the title of the post.

I went to the party a bit late, having had to pick up some unexpected co-passengers. The Bacardi was appreciated, along with my version of Flaming Moz shots. There was a lot of dancing, cake cutting in view of a friends departure and an engagement. No celebrities were sighted. Not many media personalities either (there was a smattering of Page 3 crowd, but they were mostly harmless). Just some nice people, who are quickly morphing into awesome friends.

T was there. Having heartily followed my own advice (pun intented) though, I felt fairly safe and secure. Alcohol or no. I heard once, that its when you start thinking from here (your head) rather than from here (your heart), its time to realise you are getting old(er). *sigh*

In the end, many shots and many beers later, many photographs of many wonderful couples, many videos of many hilarious stories of drunken youth, many loopy driving directions to drop many people off at many different places, I'm back where I started. In more ways that one.

Stronger. Wiser. And definitely happier.

Puts a song
In this heart of mine
Puts a smile on my face every time

'Cause I love a rainy night
Yes I love a rainy night
Ooh I love a rainy night
Yeah I love a rainy night

PS: Formula One weekend at Taika on Sunday people. Brought to you by the fine people at Fosters. If you plan to attend, do track down the crazed fan with the huge ass Ferrari flag.

Pre-weeked list

Music, check.
Bacardi 151° and Romana White Sambuca, check.
Filled up zippo, check.
Canon s230, two batteries, 512mb CF card and cute little tripod, check.
Red Bull to last the night, check.

Leave your heart at home, 'coz you know, it can only phuck things up and get in the way of a nice, clean fun evening. Check ;)

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

The wind's reply

After 2 months of being with her. After 2 months of making people wonder. After 2 months of behaving just aloof enough to save from being rude and at the same time quell any dangerous ideas. After 2 months of carefully placed 'thambi's in carefully constructed replies to carefully written messages. After 2 months of not even thinking about it. After 2 months of experiencing that wonderfully curious and alarmingly nice sensation of this-isnt-love-ing someone. After 2 months of wondering if you have arrived yet.

After 4 shows, 2 parties and 8 alcoholic beverages, realising that what we have is better than love. Knowing that the choice is ours to make. Knowing that either way, we can't lose. Knowing that either way, you don't want to budge from where you are right now. Realising, as I sat next to her - 'I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For' playing loud - looking into her eyes, that maybe I, unlike Bono, have. Just maybe, I have.

To continue what a very wise woman once said, the wind replies - Yes. Fly like you have never flown before.

I can hear it. Can't you ?

Monday, May 02, 2005

Of sandwiches and thambis

I shall be there at 630. Want me to get something to eat ?

Almost as soon as I sent the message, the phone buzzed. It was T.

T: So, sweetie, what time are you getting here ?
Me: I'm catching the 5:30 bus, so should be there before 6:30. Should I get something to eat ?
T: Sure. After you are done, wait at the corner. And listen, you are riding today.
Me: Yup. So how come you sound so happy today ?
T: Oh, nothing. Just... you are so sweet !
Me: Ummm... what do you want ? I already said I would get food. What else now ?
T: So are you going to ask me out to dinner ?
Me: Yeah, now that you said it... heheh... no da... listen I need to go and get some stuff done, so I will see ya at 6:30.

Later on the bus...

Me: Should I call her and find out if she wants a sandwich or a burger ? I have called her once already today. She will probably think I'm over doing it. But then again, I bought a sandwich on Friday. Should I get the same thing again ? Would that come across as being too boring ? Should I get her a chicken sandwich this time ? But then again, I wouldn't eat it, so she would have to herself. She would know that I bought it only for her. But that might be too much again... damn it... why do I care so much ? Double damn...

Want sandwich or burger ?

Phone rings.

T: Where are you, sweetie ?
Me: On the way...
T: What burger ?
Me: Just wanted to know if you want a burger or a sandwich...
T: Aw, thats so sweet of you. Either one, I'm not fussy.

Bought a sandwich. Waiting at the corner. She looked so nice in her formal work shirt and trousers.

T: Here, you ride.

Handing me the keys, she sat behind me on the scooty and took her helmet off. Her hair, oh my, her hair ! The wind through her wonderful curls, the way she was holding onto me. And then she said something that made me laugh out loud.

T: So you are my thambi kutti right ?
Me: Of course I am !

Over the course of the evening, she and I had about 3 fights. I tried to pin her to the ground and she got 4 or 5 kicks in. We laughed a lot. She pinched my cheeks about 5 times. She would go upto to K now and then, hold him and they would whisper. Making sure I could see.

It is such a battle - trying to figure out if you stay where you are or take a step forward. Oh, this is going to be fun. A whole truckload of fun !

Sunday, May 01, 2005

I need a haircut and...

  • There is nothing quite like an afternoon siesta, after a hearty three course tambram lunch, cooked with immense love by a dear aunt. Especially in front of a cousin, as she sweats over her final year project.
  • This house hunt is really getting to me now. I spent the whole of last week trying to see this one house (various phuckups with the owner, agent and myself ensured that none of us could be in the same place at the same time). I finally managed to see it today morning. It was lovely, exactly what I wanted. And just my luck, the very day I decide to rent the damn place, the owner gets an offer he can't refuse. Leaving me at square one.
  • I missed The Truman Show on TV tonite. I absolutely love that movie. A friend of mine was depressed for a whole week after he saw that movie. Not cause it moved him so much or anything like that, but rather because he was so pissed with himself for not having thought of the idea for the movie in the first place. But I did see Pitch Black later in the night. The Im-a-bad-guy-but-Im-so-cool-that-I-could-be-the-good-guy character never had it better than Riddick. I was a bit disappointed with The Chronicles, but I guess they still have a chance to redeem themselves.
  • I used a sewing machine for the first time in my life today. I have 'used' one before, but then my mom made me promise I would never touch it after my attempts at stitching my cousin's glove. While his hands were still in it. Anyhoo, I had bought a few pants at a sale and they needed their height fixed. Makes for quick work with that machine. I never knew how complicated the mechanisms behind that machine were ! The things one learns on a Sunday evening !
  • I finally finished reading Quicksilver (The Baroque Cycle, Vol. 1) by Neal Stephenson . I cannot tell you know amazing it is. Read it. Its frelling awesome.
  • One of my best friends, someone I've known all the way from 5th grade, is getting married later this month. I've been spending a whole lotta time with her over the last few months, especially over the past two weeks. She left on Saturday. I guess when I see her the next time, she will be married. I'm not sure how things between us are going to change, considering shes like the best friend of the fairer sex I've ever had and all that. But I do know one thing fer sure - I'm going to miss her so much !