A Murderer Breathing Down My Neck

>> Tuesday, January 13, 2009

(It depresses me extremely to realize how pathetic I actually am regarding giving titles to post. If I ever write a book, I shall name it A, and then go along the English alphabet while naming any other books there might be. Then, of course, my publisher would expect me to write 26 books, and I shall disappoint him extremely by going until C and then suffering from a major writer's block, or acquiring a religion which prevents a person from leaving any tangible proof of the fact that they had once existed. If I do not, I will keep on worrying what I would name my book after the 26th is published and probably die due to a massive heart attack. Despite these misgivings, I quite fancy writing a book called A for Aardvark. It shall be, because I will be a sort of a rebel author, about aardvarks. The title shall not be a metaphor for the tragedy of the demise of seals. That story shall come under S for Seals. My autobiography shall be named P for Pestilential Parasite. Until then, I will put this post under the rather banal title of A Murderer Breathing Down My Neck).

In Agatha Christie's world, people fall in love for the most peculiar of reasons. Women fall in love with men because the men do not love them back, the men need to be protected, the men are pure evil, the men are faithful puppies, or perhaps because the men have a streak of untamed wildness. All the men fall in love with the women because they are curiously beautiful. Moreover, the women are usually around nineteen years of age, which is rather sad since, all my life, I have been vaguely hoping I would bloom into some sort of a beauty around the time I am thirty. In Agatha Christie's world, when you are thirty, you are a lady, but not so young. No one speaks of blooming beauties. Yet, Poirot assures us that there always is someone because "journeys end in lovers' meetings".

Yes, that is correct. I get advice for my love life from a fictional Belgian bachelor with a pronounced case of moustaches.

My favourite (and spookiest) teacher once asked me why I liked reading, nay re-reading, Agatha Christie so much. I, with the sense of a feeble minded 15 year old, ventured a guess that it was because her plots were, rather, you know, page turners. He raised an eyebrow, glinted thorough his spectacles, and asked me why, then, did I not feel the same way for Sherlock Holmes, or even, Father Brown. The power of most detective stories lie in their plots. How was Christie different?

By then, practically petrified by his glinting glasses, I brought forth an "er..." and relapsed into a painful silence. After glinting for a few moments more, he answered his own question. It is, he drawled, because of the humanity in her books. The various people, the various thoughts, the banters, the humour, the tragic touch, the inevitable romantic end. Hers is not a murder alone, hers is a whole by-play of human life.

Father Brown, however, still remains a favourite. Despite the rather Gothic atmosphere, the scholarly outlook of the author, and the incongruous mildness of the detective (for detectives, even Miss Marple, are usually very agitated by the evil in men. Father Brown, invariably, chooses Christian forgiveness). The spiritual approach, however, was never a fault. The underlying religiousness, the humility and the gentleness - was Chesterton, one wonders, symbolizing the supreme tolerance of his own faith?

Do books with religion as theme take on the characteristics of the religion? There is Buddha Da - charming, insightful, gentle, probing, introspective, in fact, donning the mantle of the very Buddhism it uses as plot tool. Despite the rather uncomfortable Scottish way of speech, the book never fails to touch a chord. It remains, above and beyond religion, a heart warming depiction of faith and acceptance.

While we are on the topic of Scottish authors, Scottish author Alexander McCall Smith is supposed to be inaugurating the Kolkata Book Fair on the 27th of this month. People not unfortunate enough to be a part of Calcutta University might want to drop in there. Perhaps get me an autograph. Or read him the seven page speech I am going to write in his honour. Pretty please with a cherry on top?

I now forget what the title was supposed to be about. Why a murderer? Why the neck? Where did Scotland come in? Why can not I stick to a point? What are aardvarks?

Which probably means, why am I even posting this?

14 scaly flippers:

Nirmalya 12:29 am, January 17, 2009  

Oh, pray don't delete it, it's such a wonderful post.

Btw, Chesterton wasn't a Catholic when he wrote Father Brown stories, though he would become one later.

memsaab 3:49 am, January 17, 2009  

Sticking to a point is overrated.

Devdeep 11:25 am, January 17, 2009  

"Women fall in love with men because the men do not love them back,"

This means that if I act absolutely evil to some girl or deceive her or ditch her.. she will start loving me even more. That's gr8... or would u like to give sum xplanation...

Conversly, it seems that u hve received a lot of love from men... since it seems frm ur posts that u arent committed...

(Thats frm a supposed to be real mathematician)

By the way an amazing post.. I think it would be gr8 if u start writing professionally.... I'll b ur partner

What's In A Name ? 1:47 am, January 18, 2009  

and all this for one Alexander McCall Smith! stupendous!

vanilla sky 4:10 pm, January 18, 2009  

The post more or less can well serve as a preface/foreward to your murder mystery book.

dreamy 4:15 pm, January 19, 2009  


yes...this IS my idea of a simple comment

Hatturi Hanzo 1:53 pm, January 21, 2009  

sob kemon ghNeTe ghaw hoye gelo :(

Standbymind 11:04 pm, January 22, 2009  


Hey ya...how u been?

Hallucinations of a teardrop...sreemanti 10:37 pm, January 23, 2009  

I have always come across books that dare to cross the narrowness of their subject to be alluring. So is Agatha Christie. Holmes is about the precision and christie the dangerous vagueness nd if ppl r as unsure abt stuff as me, christie gets a "cherry on the top " !!

Amazing writing style and flow ! (by the way, i am a blogger)

Jean 5:39 pm, January 25, 2009  

I like the way you write even though what you write has very little relevance to the title.


Abhishek 12:55 pm, January 27, 2009  

now, what again?

Siladitya 12:23 am, March 04, 2009  

Did Steve Harvey copy the book title Act Like A Lady Think Like A Man

and theme from an earlier book?

Book with same title & theme copyrighted and published by Sharon P. Carson in 2003

CHICAGO, IL – Sharon P. Carson the author of the original title: Act Like A Lady –Think Like A Man, watched the February 27th episode of the Ophra show on which Steve Harvey was promoting his book of the same title. She was hoping that Steve would reveal to Oprah where he got the title and the theme for the book. It just seemed odd to her that his book had the same title and theme as her book that was copy written in 2003.

Upon subsequently purchasing the book, she found some interesting parallels and realized that it is not unusual for a high profiled person to take a great title and theme, rewrite a book and use their celebrity status to sell it. This she says happens too often to the unsung poets, authors and entrepreneurs of the world.

Steve wrote in his book that his hope was to “empower you with a wide-open look into the minds of men”. Sharon P. Carson wrote in her book in 2003 that her hope was for women to gain some insight into how men think in terms of relationships. Sharon also noted that in chapter 8 of Steve Harvey’s book titled “Why Men Cheat” he came to the same conclusion that she did in chapter 37 of her book, titled “Why would a man cheat”, and the answer was, “because they can”.

Sharon actively promoted her book before the release in January 2009 of Steve Harvey’s book, and would not like to see her promotion efforts hindered. She feels that her book has much to offer from a woman’s perspective and seeks to empower women to practice self love and tough love in relationships.

Before the publication of Steve Harvey’s book of the same title, Sharon bought the domain name: www.actlikealadythinklikeaman.com from which she has been selling her book. She has also held seminars with women at a Chicago University in promotion of her book, and can be viewed on the following youtube clip as she was being interviewed on a cable television program about her book in 2007 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xxVVQX15X2Y.

Mindful of all the self - published poets and authors who have a hard time finding publishers for their works, Sharon is currently consulting with attorneys regarding her options, and hopes that her book with the first and original title of Act Like A Lady Think Like A Man will finally receive the recognition it deserves for the wisdom, encouragement, and empowerment that it provides to women.

Haiku Poems 5:36 pm, March 09, 2009  

what a story.
Haiku Poems

Anonymous 8:51 am, November 29, 2010  

Very nicce!

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