Balls of Magic

White balls – Three of them.

Polished to shine.

Painting mischief in the air

Just by bouncing around.

 

Her eyes pant.

Following the balls tires them.

Two eyes, three balls..

Too much to keep up with.

Yet they try.

 

The balls fly higher.

Her eyes try to catch up.

But hey.. what’s that?

There. . Gleaming more than the balls?

 

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All the world is my Family

Each time I walk in to our hostel’s bathroom, I return irked. [Ok, not each time – let us say each time that I go there without eyes half-closed 😛 ]

There it stares at me – a hand-written note reading “Think of the cleaning people as your relatives who are helping you and do not leave behind shampoo sachets, napkins etc in the bathing stalls”.

Any free-of-manufacturing-packaging-and-marketing-cost advice is prefixed with a “Tujhe meri beti samajhke keh rahi hun beta.. jaldi shaadi kar lo.. dekho mummy-papa kitne tension mein hain tere waje se!” (translation : I tell you thinking of you as my daughter child.. Do marriage ASAP.. See mummy-papa are in how much tension cos of you!”)

How many times have we met Aunty-jis oozing maternal warmth proudly declaring “Oh, hamaari maid ko to hum family member hi samajhte hain. Diwali pe uske liye bhi naye kapde liye the – woh bhi uski marzi ki” (translation : Oh, our maid – we think of her as family member only. On Diwali, we took new clothes for her too – that too of her choice).

You dare think this extending family member “status” to the whole world habit is restricted to the north of India? Do you want a time-wasting challenge? One that I am bound to win? Pick 3 tamil movies – any 3 ‘entertainers’ aka masala flicks – sit through them for the total 9hrs. I’ll buy you the big Cadbury Silk with Orange peel (yummy) if you do not see a male indulging in street harassment or rape and a male/female confronting him with “Nee ellaam akka thangachi-oda porakkala?” (translation : You all did not take birth with elder sis/younger sis?). [In no other language is the dialogue that standardized & delivered with such conviction! Me loves Tamil cinema!]

Talk about women’s rights to dress as they wish & there is always someone who asks “Would you let your sisters/wife to go out wearing such clothes?”.

Talk about rape becoming a national hobby & there is always someone who declares “If it happened to my sister, I would waste no time thinking.. I would go & shoot him from close-range!” (ok.. wife is not included – a raped wife is damaged goods to be returned to the shop).

The list could go on..

Ok.

So, am I capable of treating people decently only if I think of them as a family member?

Can I be concerned about someone only if he/she is my son/daughter?

Will I take the effort to stand up for someone only if they share loads of DNA with me?

And of course, it is only my wife/sisters who should dress modestly & stay off lecherous eyes while all other “paraaye” (‘belonging’ to others) women can behave any which way & hence get harassed left and right!

Moral of the story : We, as a society, are not capable of empathy unless it comes qualified with “family”!

All the world is my family? Really?  Does all the world NEED to be my family for me to practice basic decency, courtesy & empathy?

Why do I find that insulting to my ability not to be selfish all the time?

Am I the only one frustrated with this exceedingly accepted, respected, revered, totally patronizing & “me so noble” attitude?

Behind my Back

I had thought tonight would be like any other night. That apparently wasn’t to be.

It is just past midnight and I am working (well, trying to) in my lab – a monotonous looking room full of computers.

For the past 30 minutes, I have been in my own world – oblivious to whether or not I have company.

My headphones – with Rafi crooning mischievously through them –  shield me from the outer world.

But not for long.. I hear voices – familiar ones. Three male voices.

They are shouting. There seems to be action behind my back.

I pause the music player – but keep my headphones on – to appear to have not noticed. I decide to wait and eavesdrop before I turn back and take a look.

“Do we have enough money?”

“Some One fifty thousand”

“I’m going then”

“Idiots! Don’t you all come behind me at once”

LOOK. . Your killer – behind you. . Duck

Killer? I am not sure I want to turn back and look at the action behind me.

“You need a weapon. . here, I’m throwing you one”

“Pass me the bomb”

<Silence>

<Collective sigh>

“Well. . three-four shots were good”

“Ouch”

“Throw that bomb at that one”

“Once if you get hit that way, recovery is difficult”

“Hey. . You don’t have a gun. . Come back – NOW!

“Stop! There’s a bomb lying there.”

“I’m going via A. . who wants to come?”

“Sssh.. One more .. coming from behind the double door.. Careful”

<Silence>

“Awesome shot yaar.. I killed one”

“All are dead”

They cheer for their victory and walk out –  for tea.

That made me nostalgic – brought back memories of school days.

Those days where shooting was as easy as writing with a pencil, and I did not bat an eyelid at all the gore less than a foot in front of me.

Multi-player action games – ah, what fun, what thrill!

Should ask these lab-mates of mine if they play my favorite game – Age of Empires.

P.S. Ah, what fun it is to blog live about unsuspecting people, sitting right in front of them – all the while looking as if I am neck-deep in work B-)

Yearning for Divorce Day

I met P around 2.5 years back.

The relationship bloomed and was cemented over walks to the nearby lake to photograph the rising sun, late night auto-rickshaw rides from railway stations, and mid-night walks in the campus on full-moon nights.

On bad nights, P sat right next to me, at my desk while I worked my ass off all night in the lab – when I was the only one in lab and there was one particular shady character who had taken to saying Hi often and creepily. Those nights felt safe solely because of P’s being close at hand.

I don’t remember when the wedding happened – it was just natural that I married P.

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