Archive | September, 2009


29 Sep

She stared at her “canned” section testily. Ran her eyes over the months with odd-numbered posts. Felt dissatisfied about those that didn’t end evenly.

December: 15 posts

May: 7

And then, just because she couldn’t bear one more month of unevenness, she ratcheted up the word count and ended September with a respectable 10.


If It’s Tuesday, This Must Be…

22 Sep

… babble!

OJ: Which animal is this?

Little T: A kangaroo.

OJ: And what is its baby called?

Little T: Juhi.

Come to think of it, Ms. Chawla is about that high.

In the South They Have a Mouth

21 Sep

a.k.a. This Townie Gets No Brownie

OJ: Hey, you went to Khandala?

BFF: Yeah, office off-site. Ghattu went too.

OJ: Oh fun! His first trip out of Bombay!

BFF: Not really, he’s been to [the Boy’s former suburban home], no?

Reserve your judgement, people. As a teenager, I used to have a pen-pal in Andheri. We even met once.

October Already

18 Sep

October already, and

the trees lose their damp;

Silently into the night

it slips,

taking umbrage in sleeping forms and steam,

picking its way through drunken brawls and



October already, and

the clouds are amiss;

Gone to their grandma’s across

the bay,

Family feuds incite migrations

But if you never look upward

you can pretend they’re here still.


October already, and

the guttural discontent

climbs out of our bellies,

loops over shoulders and necks,

stops by the iris to nod hello,

before strangling us smugly

in our beds.

Laydeez and Gennelmen…

16 Sep

…may I (insanely proudly) present to you….


adele 1

Black Beauty doesn't have a thing on her.

adele 2

No daughter of mine is ever going to match those waifish looks.

Look the other way now!

Look the other way now!

Now, now, no stampeding, boys and girls. Go git your own.

And no, that’s not two extra pounds I’ve put on since she arrived. It’s called being chuffed.


The Return of Confucius

14 Sep

a.k.a. Treasure at your Leisure


OJ: What is this?

Little B: This is a nose.

OJ: What do you do with it?

Little B: I dig it.

What was that again about Monday mornings being crap?

The Death of Lapwanti

8 Sep

Yes, again.

And this time she’s gone for good.

I love scribbling update-type posts about as much as the majority of you seems to love reading them (which is nada, for the unplugged among us), but I could do with some sympathy here. C’mon, people, gush forth now. I’ll even leave you with some neon wisdom while I dither between the possibility of an electronic successor and lifelong penury. These ears, they strain for applause.


Real strength lies in not hurting someone when you know just how easily you can.

Through the Looking Glass

4 Sep

a.k.a. Goodbye Ganpu


I’m not religious. That’s an understatement. If I had my intolerant way as Empress of the World, religion as a construct and a practice would be officially banned and I’d happily skewer secret societies out of existence. My weekly foaming at the mouth necessarily includes how stoned the masses are on ritualism, symbolism and the debilitating need to worship. Add to it the human penchant to vilify nature as part of the revelry and I’m ready to burst a blood vessel. Ergo, my reaction to socio-religious occasions like Ganpati is a resigned trip to buy ear muffs and periodic shuddering about sound pollution and the state of the sea.

So it took me more than a little by surprise when I found myself peering curiously at the crowds at Chowpatty a few days ago and patting the little idol I took to school today for show-and-tell when it toppled over. For the first time in the 26 Ganpati festivals I have been witness to, I didn’t shut my windows to the sounds of the streets. I let the reverberations stream in, pretending not to listen to the roar of the crowds and the insistent throbbing of drums, louder than the rain that poured on their upturned faces, watched the lights and the flowers from the darkness of my balcony, pushed back the faint stirrings of a vague something as I saw truck-sized statues trundle their way toward a watery grave and I wondered. About what it is that so many people seem to find in faith and belief that I cannot be a part of. About why I can only find higher power(s) in leaves and waves and certain people. About how the socio-religious propriety gene went missing in me.

But this once, I wasn’t the critical outsider. This once, I was part of that little bobbing universe. This once, I walked willingly into the inevitable, not away from it. And I write this to the rhythm of an insanity I have long disowned. Now, I’m unsure. And I guess I’ll have to wait a whole year to find out whether this was momentary madness or old age has arrived some decades early.

Bleddy popular culture. It’s finally had its way with me.


Fail Rail

3 Sep

I sure have interpersonal issues. Even my Gmail attachments fail!

~Me to the Boy, only half jokingly.

To Adina, Who Came First

1 Sep

Your blood is not your own, Child,

not of your people or choosing,

Its thickness determined in the trenches,

the color as lurid as rape.

Be not unduly proud of your lineage,

for you have contributed nought thus far.

(And merely add to the numbers with the straightness of

your nose and character.)


You are Aryan, says the lilt in Mamma’s voice, her

swarthy face mocking the delusion of tone.

There are none so blind as those who will not

see, and you must not wish for

The reputation of your bloodline,

your stories, your creed,

to carve your path,

precede you.


When, at the hour of reckoning,

they ask what you have done,

You cannot believe

that merely being spawned,

birthed among the anointed:

blessed thousands on stretches of prime earth and vaster benefits,

was your greatest contribution to the land that

embalmed you.


Be not of your blood, Child,

for they will anchor you,

in chains that beseech and soggy knots that shrink

until you morph-molt-manifest,

Your nose, height and hair

shrieking hosannas to history,

And the iron gates, they will creakingly close,

locking you inside, among the Sayers,

arrested, taut and proud,