Damn My Cursed Memory

>> Friday, February 29, 2008

Dreamy tagged me. Of course, she has no way to know I have never remembered anything for more than ten minutes at a go. So, most of the input which was supposed to be remembered is remembered by my mother. She is the guest author of this post.

Life Ten years ago:

From what she remembers, I was gawky, awkward, shy and tongue ties with mostly everyone. Of course, she willingly and unnecessarily adds, I have not shown much change since then. I wanted to be a singer by night and doctor by day. My life revolved around mathematics, my best friend and molding mud into cakes. I used to decorate them with leaves and grounded brick powder. It all used to smell wonderful. Life was also about shared lunches where nine or ten giggly girls would sit around and discuss the comparative advantage of Punjabi pickles over Marwari pickles over Bengali pickles. To my unrefined tastes, Marwari pickles always used to win uncontested. Bengali kuler achar (I can not translate this into anything remotely English), as divine as it is, could never match up.

Life five years ago:

I was fat. That used to take the fun out of most things. Life was mostly about how torturous Physics is and how much one scored in Biology on ten marks. The impending Boards exam failed to scare me. The effeminate classmate I thought I was hopelessly in love with did. Marwari pickles still formed a huge part of my life. There was also a personal diary which was full of so much sentiment, I ended up throwing it out once I entered college. Also started writing poetry. Stopped next year.

Life tomorrow.

Will try to turn 20 without getting into hysterics (OK, yeah, tomorrow is my birthday :D. That is the entire purpose of this post anyway)

Five locations I would love to run away to.
(Ordered by accessibility)

  • Presidency Botany Department corridor
  • Lakshadweep
  • Corfu
  • Random African jungle
  • P. E. Island
Five bad habits I have.
(I do not consider biting nails as a bad habit. It is a necessary condition for existence)

  • The fact that I cannot sit down for a meal without knocking down a random glass. My favourite eatery refuses to serve me water anymore.
  • I keep on complaining about the dissatisfying shape of my nose. However, not much nowadays. I realize I have to marry Bilawal Bhutto anyway. Which obviously means I will be heading the country some day. For that, one needs an authoritative nose. Indira Gandhi and I own the same nose.
  • I cannot laugh before examinations without getting hysterical and end up laughing for half an hour straight for no reason why.
  • I go to sleep at 6 in the morning. I wake up at 2 in the afternoon. My mum is thinking of disowning me.
  • I am scared of everything.

Five things I will never wear.

  • Something pink.
  • Gold.
  • Navel ring (someone told me it itches a lot)
  • Heels more than 2 inches long ( I can not afford to tower above the remaining male population)
  • Rings
Five biggest joys at this moment.

  • I painted my toes green and chrome. It looks ugly, but very satisfying.
  • Conversations with Bonky
  • My hair is longer. I do not look any more like a boy who tried to give himself a crew cut. Now I look like the boy who forgot to have his hair cut.
  • I have lost both my glasses. Now I can walk down anywhere I like to without having to recognize people. I can always say I could not see them.
  • I am off to buy more clothes.
Something to achieve by next year

An aim. I cannot just live in frivolity for the rest of my life. More is the pity.

Something that impacted me last year

The hospital tenure. I realized in those ten days that I was making many wrong choices. Now making different wrong choices. But not the same ones.

What will I miss about 2007


Five things I want to do before I die

There are a hundred. The most important one is to learn to raise one eyebrow. The others are either too insignificant, or too sacred.

I tag Abhishek, doubletake, doublethink, Mac the nut, Kaushik, Na. Su. Krishnan, Speedpost, the new age scheherazade and The ancient mariner.


The last ode to teenage-ism

>> Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Warning : Girlie post

Fellow blogger Doubletake, Doublethink has had a girlhood akin to all girlhoods, mostly spent in waiting for the dream man from the pages of a book (ranging from Danielle Steele to Gone with the wind) to materialize in flesh and of course, fall in love with us. This being the most significant experience for girls all over, one realizes the importance of preserving the essence of our first loves. Thus, while she rots with other more trivial pursuits (like Boards for instance), she, for us to remember her by, has started a meme, as she names it. In her own words,

"I'm starting a meme (muahahhaha). Anyone who has ever fallen in love with her version of the GHM, I tag you. Write a post, it doesn't have to be very big, about that person – literary character, comic book hero, some guy in a movie, a random person you'll never meet – we’ll start a list that will probably never end."

GHM would be the Georgette Heyer Man, a one of a kind lover an impressionable girl can easily be obsessed with. Doubletake has a more detailed description of him in her post.

And so, my GHM....

He arrived in my life at the very naive age of 14. He returned when I was 18. And, of course, till now, he displays no willingness to leave and someone real arrive. Harry Rayburn, or
John Eardsley is a cross between Othello and Tarzan. He is rich but has given up all his wealth to seek vengeance for the death and defamation of his friend. He resides alone in an island in Africa and does more or less nothing but brood. Of course, he goes and seeks revenge, is often an impostor in the strangest of ships, is mind numbingly hot and threatens to beat up his love interest black and blue if she even looks at another guy.
A self confessed wife beater, an Etonian who has given up all his wealth for an African island near a waterfall, where he saves drowning damsels and then marries them (if he does marry them, hard to find a registrar in African jungles, I would have guessed). Paleolithic in his passions and general behaviour with the rest of humanity, rude, insolent and a woman hater, he is probably not every woman's dream, or even nightmare, but since the age of 14, Harry Rayburn has been the man I have woefully given my heart too. Of course, the fact that he catches diamond smugglers and can easily murder someone in the heat of anger just adds to his gentlemanly charms.

He is the chief protagonist of Agatha Christie's Man in the Brown Suit, and despite the impression I seem to have given, is wonderfully monogamistic. If it reflects sadly on my literary tastes, yes, I have fallen more in love with Christie characters than any other, except Feluda. And Lord Emsworth. And of course, Psmith. There was also these brief affairs with Rhett Butler, Buntschli, and Flambeau, but the Man in the Brown Suit stands tall and unchallenged.

I request all girls to take this tag up. Even guys if they have had their own female version of the GHM.
So, visitor, you are tagged.


It is That Time of the Year Again

>> Saturday, February 09, 2008

1) When colleges close up within a few hours notice. When you may suddenly end up in the first page of newspapers. When you might switch on the TV and see your classmate being beaten up. When everyone is fawning over you.

For College Elections have come to town.

I frankly pity students who have never studied in a politically inclined college. Nothing, nothing beats the news of college being closed down because policemen have gheraoed the area. And, of course, if you have ever had a crush on one of those politicians who would never deign to look at an unpolitical mite as you, this is the perfect time for the come-hither looks.

Let the Chinese have their New Years. Let the lovers have their Valentine Days. Let the chickens have their flus. I have more involved, passionate and dangerous events to look forward to.

2) When one realizes its about time one comes to term with reality and starts taking her graduation seriously. So the first thing one goes and does is watch Dr. Strangelove. Of course, after such an experience, it is hard to take anything seriously. Plans are in the offing to watch Elizabeth next. The probable inspiration one looks forward to is declare to the whole world one is illegitimate and go tell Bilawal Bhutto that one is the rightful heir to Pakistan's throne. Then again, it is not right to assume brotherly feelings for him after having lusted for that aquiline nose for months.

Then again, as discussed so minutely in the last post(specially the comment section), I am probably about to be declared non-collegiate. So do not think it is worth taking the pressure of examinations for.

3) Valentine's Day. When happy couples spend money on each other and single people go around protesting that its just a marketing gimmick. Of course, I do not believe in Valentine's Day. It is a marketing gimmick.

Bonky and I happen to be the only unattached (or as we prefer calling ourselves, detached) people remaining in possibly this entire world. And no, we have not had any lesbian tendencies. But it is a sad week for both of us while we take advantage of the Valentine sales to buy chocolates and wristwatches for ourselves. But we are a kindly lot. We want the other to be happily settled in commitment bliss. Which is why the following conversation took place

Bonky and Pongo, taking another never ending bus ride home. Pongo is immersed in a book. Bonky is immersed in watching cute guys. They are thrown together so much anyway that they have hardly anything left to talk about. Next time I make friends, I will go for the ones with commitment phobia. At least it will not lead to my mother harbouring doubts about my orientation, seeing that I only have one friend I spent most of my time with. The others are too occupied with their better halves.

B: Damn, not one cute guy. Oooh, Ritika, you got to look, it is your soulmate.
P (By now used to this occurrence): Oh, indeed? Long hair?
B: Check
P: Tall?
B: Check
P: Earrings?
B: Only on one ear.
P: Perfect. Unshaven for a day or so?
B: Yes. An out and out aantel. Plus, he is carrying a bag which looks as if it might carry books.
P(suddenly animated): You have got to be kidding me. You found my soulmate!! Where is he?
P(tremulous): Hot girlfriend?
B( nodding sadly): Check.

4) I grow older. With a difference. I will never be a teen anymore. I leave my teens with regrets, having never done a thing teens are supposed to do. No wild romances, no overnight wild blings(or is it bilge, anyway, something) and certainly no pyjama parties either. At 19, I am growing up to be a dowdy 30 year old.

Though there is still about a month left. A whole month to fill it up with all the wildness of seven years.

I think I will end up being a dowdy thirty year old twenty year old. I have had more fun that way in all these years anyway.

Valentine's Day is not only for couples. Its for all loved ones. I love you all for actually taking time out and visiting my blog. So, here is wishing you all a Happy Valentine's Day.
Also, please dress in black on fourteenth. We will have a collective mourning for Mr. Wodehouse.


Weddings and Funerals

>> Saturday, February 02, 2008

What with the advent of dire situations mere mortals would call bird flu and a weather which freezes your fingers to the keyboard, the situation at the home front is something Edgar Allan Poe would, frankly, revel in. Not that Poe would ever envisage a plot line in a city which has lavish weddings even in such morbid conditions. Hardly the kind of misery one looks forward to during the month which hosts something as horribly empty as Valentine's Day.

Weddings fascinate me. They provide lost souls with fish fries. On a less brighter note, they also include relatives and other people who all claim to have met you when you were a more socially adept toddler. One grins and bears it with Spartan composure. But then one wonders. Could one be a changeling? Why is surprise the first expression registered in the erstwhile acquaintances' faces? Why should it be mentioned again and again that one looks like her father. One would assume it to be a cause for concern if one did not look like one of her parents. And why is this said over and over again (I know its a cliche, but this does happen to everyone, and it remains the most tiring of all questions)

Unidentified relative (UR) :My dear, how you have grown!!!!
Fish Fry enamoured invitee (FFEI) (deprecatingly) : Oh, just the heels.
UR (flustered) : OH, well, you still have grown.
FFEI (with burgeoning suspicion): Do you mean, grown fat?
UR (alarmed) : Oh, no, no, dear, no. Of course not. Certainly not.
FFEI (in verge of tears) : Of course you mean fat.
UR: Oh no, I never..Oh dear..I...
FFEI(the sense of dramatics in full force) : You can not blame me for putting on a few extra kilos. Its the most harmless addiction I could find. You do not know what I have seen. You do not know what I have faced. I have fought drugs and fags and booze and sex and politics and studies. Would you deny me the extra morsel of food? Would you, I ask you?
UR(leaves whimpering piteously)

Attended a sorrowful funeral a few days back. Buried my shoes amidst fond farewell scenes and tears, for they had been not unknown amongst friends and acquaintances. Its sad demise, which had been as gory as the death scenes in Saving Private Ryan, resulted in a hunt for new shoes while walking barefoot along the learned footpaths of college street. But that is a story for more cheerful times. This tale is about the sheer pain of loss.

It all started when buses started making seats for pygmies with, hopefully, both legs amputated. Fulfilling neither of the qualifications, I twisted around a narrow seat, with one leg curved viciously against the other. Needless to say, having longer legs than bus designers expect the average women to have, I got stuck the minute I had to get up and leave. After extricating myself out of it for a struggle of around ten minutes, my feet greeted the college steps, shoeless and forlorn. My beloved shoes remained stuffed inside my bag, now split into two. We finally buried them in the famous Presi drains, a fitting renowned graveyard for a pair of loyal shoes. They have stood with me through thick and thin, withstanding rains and summers and snow, have been trampled on, dragged, stomped and walked with. I wore them on my first day to college, they were a part of my attire the day I took my first steps to my library, they adorned my feet the day I my HOD declared I had 32% attendance and about to be listed as non-collegiate. Yet, they gave way under the pressure of narrow bus space where legs cannot be crammed inside.

This post remains dedicated to its memory.

[To people like me who seem to think they will never ever get to celebrate Valentine's Day, just tell people you refuse to do so, as it would be an insult to the memory of P.G. Wodehouse, who died on that day (May God bless his soul)]


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