Writer's Blog

Transient Thoughts

Thursday, June 30, 2005

One of the many funny quotes that Bangalore Times has been publishing on a one-a-day basis:
"I don't want to achieve immortality through my work, I want to achieve it through not dying" - Woody Allen

Tuesday, June 28, 2005



I hate flamboyance. I hate flamboyant people. Can't stand them. Give me a get-together with a flamboyant once-aquantainance and you have ruined my evening. He narrates his escapades in this mountain, that valley the other forest, tells stories of boogying into the night, of partying non-stop. He seems to be re-living each moment - while I listen apologetically, having done nothing daring, at least nothing I can discuss. I end up telling him that I write stories for magazines, comics and give him the address of my blog. Normally I would'nt, but I have to show something for having lived so many years since we last knew each other. Pretty sad.

I am totally intimidated by flamboyance. It puts me off. It puts me down. It takes the wind out of me. Give me the quietly talented guys, I say. Let them be Picassos and Mozarts but let them be quiet. Then I'll like them.

But who is quiet these days?

The flamboyant guy always looks conspicuously at the obese kid, waves at it, makes funny faces, and completely ignores the gorgeous mother - showing off his sexual security. While you take your eyes guiltily off the mother thinking, how pathetic am I?

What do I do when I am faced with patronizing flamboyance. Crumple up and look for sympathy. Or be my true self. Which is? My true self might be the quiet, sensitive, romantic, clever, intelligent guy - slightly shy, sometimes funny. A bit thoughtless, tolerably selfish. But where is the place for this in a flamboyant world.

I can't meet flamboyance on an equal footing. This makes me feel bad.

I keep thinking I need to something famous. So everyone will be by default impressed with me - even the flamboyant guys - and I won't have to do much. I can be quiet through meetings and get-togethers. My seeming introvertishness will be taken as a charming idiosyncrasy and not a miserable patheticness. My not having a girlfriend will be forgiven. Hmm. I should do something famous.

There is an alternate choice. And that is serenity. Meditation. Yoga. Karate and self control. Inner Bliss.

But I think I like the 'do something famous' option better.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Two Restaurants

The proverbial white sheet is replaced by the white terminal in Notepad. And I write something, for the sake of writing, looking for that music which made the great poet say, "Ghalib, the scratching of the pen on paper is the sound of angels".

But as another poet Akbar Allahabadi said "How can Akbar make poetry when the pen is in his hands and the ink elsewhere", so seems the case with me. Except in my case the ink is in several different places, all distant and unreachable, by degrees unknown.

A whole weekend of could-be inspirations has been wasted on me.

The differently similar coziness of two restaurants. The red hued Chinese place - Mandarin. With the tinkling of bells and the clinks of knives and forks. The now on, now off drizzle outside. The multi-reflections of light flashes on my plate...The girl sitting on the next table - a muddy brown complexion which is used to represent Indians in cartoon strips and English movies - neither here nor there - neither fair nor dark; with two larger front teeth and eyes which flash in sync with the parting of her lips and the gurgle of her laughter...The drawing room comfort of the India Coffee House. The posters which say "Indian Coffee - a glorious tradition " "Coffee the anytime drink. Kaafee jab chahen tab peeyen". The wood panneled walls, the liveried waiters. The framed picture of Gandhiji. The sober, mixed crowd. The large mirror on the wall. The excellent coffee.

The Sunday morning walk through a poor, leisurely neighbourhood. The loose tape from a broken casette that so slithers on the road like a swift snake in the gentle breeze that you pull your foot away. The amazing lighting of the mild sun that lends charm to the narrow gullies that seem dismal at night. There seems enough light to contrast hazaar shades and colours. How does one capture the glossy finish of a morning spectacle...everyone is out of their cramped houses keeping themselves busy one way or the other. There's so much crowd and so much time-pass chitchat. One or two people trying to fly kites without too much success - Bangloreans seem to be pathetic kite-fliers...Only the white clouds hurry around with un-Sunday-ish speed egged on by the manager-like wind...

So far so bad.

As a last ditch effort I play Silsila on my tape-player. Even that does not help. The beautiful words on my blog still have to be others':

Neela aasmaan so gaya,
neela aasmaan so gaya,
la la laa laa la...

Os barase raat bhige hont tharrayen
Dhadkane kuch kahana chahen keha nahi paayen
Hawa ka geet maddham hai,
Samay ki chaal bhi kam hai..

Aansuon mein chand dooba raat murjhaayi,
Zindagi mein door tak phaili hai tanhaayi,
Jo guzare ham pe woh kam hai,
Tumhare gam ka mausam hai.

Pyar ki vaadi mein gunje beethe afsaane,
Hamsafar jo kal the ab thehare woh begaane,
mohabbat aaj pyaasi hai,
badi gehari udaasi hai.

Neela aasmaan...