Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Rock Bottom

Pondering over the things that could possibly make a person hit this fabled extreme, I have drawn the following list-
A. Loss (of friends/loved ones) and/or Separation
B. Being broke
C. Having no prospects at all in studies and/or work
D. Homelessness and instability

What if someone is so lucky as to say yes to all of the above choices...Are they so deep down that a nadir seems like an eyerie?

Top 3 Cliched ways to see the bright side of crashing and burning -
3. There is no other way to go but up
2. You have nothing left to lose
and since we dont have any creditable image to live up to, lets entangle in the mesh of cliches and declare the winner #1 "its always darkest before dawn"

I'm so happy that I cant stop crying,
Rain

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Autogenerated Fortune

This is a really unfunny fortune predicted for me-
Today's fortune: You and your wife will be happy in your life together

Auto-generated crappy fortune predicting software is chauvinistic!
:(

Will me and my husband be happy in my life together?
[Where is he, BTW]
Rain

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Limerick of Silence

Today I finished a significant task
but not in a way that, in joy, I can bask

Its just done
and a friend, if you're one

Nothing more about it, you will ask...

:(
Rain

Thursday, October 11, 2007

A mutlitude of topics

Some people I like, like to cook and take great pride and joy in making culinary masterpieces and delicacies. One of them knows that she can set up a rocking restaurent if ever she feels the need to stop making money for an uncaring, faceless computer company and the other wants to run away and join the team in "Ace of Cakes" [For the uninitiated and those who dont watch the Food Network, these guys can make a whole cake typewriter!]

Me? I cook to eat and not vice versa (or was the question originally live to eat vs. eat to live??)The fact that I am alive and rotound should clearly be a shining tribute to the smackiness of my preparations and I have nothing to say/prove to those yukking smartypants who like to pretend that I cant cook. [mentally include a swear word for them...thanks]But lets proceed to that all important activity for life sustenance - Eating.

Of late my feelings for this once "strictly mandatory hence I am doing it" act has changed to that of "ooh i would like to eat that and that and that......" :) and love springs eternal!
I have become a foodie, my people!

Does that spell furthering of my width-wise expansion? profound yet logical train of thought says YES.
Is it going to make any difference? probability of me ever finding out that I am the Fattest person ever is zilch, so what is the big difference in being fatter than a million and 24567 people as opposed to be fatter than a million?Zilch again! Hence the munching continues.

Forces of evil (Read-the fashion industry) are trying to stop this run of food enjoyment by subliminal messaging in a not so subtle way. of all the places in a trouser, they have printed a string of keywords in a loop around the waistband that says "Feel Feminine Discover Be Confident Beautiful...." etc in pretty italics only so that the wearer while casting her eyes on them will feel the obligation to stay away from anything that affects the waist. But the dark side is not getting to me one bit as the following have a stronger hold on yours truely - Potato dishes, Burrito Bols, Soy burgers, Subs, Pop Corn, icecream, waffles, Spicy Veggies....Ummmmmmmmm [author drools and the keyboard short-circuits]

Speaking of pants, I have inadvertantly stolen the innocence of two of my male friends while venting the unfair practices of the sadistic fashion industry by depriving women the essence of trousers - the pockets. I also rectified the situation by asking them to feign surprise/ignorance when their significant lady discusses this with them. That may seem not so positive but it will prevent the following scenario:
Her: So my keys/lipstick/card is in the handbag somewhere [rummages a trendy bag that once used to be a part of some reptile]
Him: [typical lack of patience] I wonder why you have to mess with putting everything in that bag. It'd be a lot better if you had pockets in your pants like I do.
Her: [bag forgotten, focussing lasers on the target] How did you ever find out that womens pants dont have pockets...[Quick flashback of dialogues from several Romance novels/movies - "You are the only girl/lady/woman in my life"]
Him: Um...Ahh....Uhhh [a dull alarm ringing sound in the back of the head indicating fatal danger prevents any coherent thought]
[Everything goes black and there is a shrill scream of a dying animal]

So with the weather turning wet and chilly and me not having enough exercise to justify the eating, I am going to have to rethink my new love, but not right away [Eternal Procastinator]. Yes, Fall has arrived late this year but it has and several batches of my friends have made the pilgrimage to New Hampshire with due religious fervor. I was planning to go last weekend but there was no accomodation available [I mean the Columbus weekend had 60K people going into that tiny little state] and whatever was bookable seemed to have the following words (occuring one or more times) to describe itself - Romantic, Couple, Firelight, Jacuzzi, Getaway, Rekindle, Honeymoon, Wedding...which by itself was a big turn off for me, but the honest version of the rooms description should've used the following words - Old, overpriced, wishful thinking, no free breakfast, is he kidding me, expensive as hell, what-would-I-do-with-a-jacuzzi-in-the-living-room.etc.

Thats ok, I have better, more rocking travelling plans that makes these Fall Drive tours to pale in comparison!:)

Eat, Drink and Be Merry,
Rain

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Tale of the Two Cities

I am a super-charged NewYorker during the workweek daytime and a change back to a mild mannered Jersey Girl at other times. I embrace my dual identities and happily too.
Funnily enough, it fits and isnt as contrary as one might expect. Having managed the transition from small-town girl (where everyone on the street practically knows your name and what you had for breakfast) without even blinking, I smoothly enmeshed myself into the routine that best serves the fact that I work in New York and live in the neighbouring Garden state.
Of course, I had help; Vijay to help with the office related settling-in and Ratheesh helped me find my groove in the svelte sophistication of Newport, Jersey City.

I never thought I would feel this way, but I like the bee-hive activity in the Big Apple and the constant buzz of people doing things. I like submerging into the sea of humanity and being led into and out of trains and while crossing the streets. There is simply no time for gossip and nose-poking here, its just not NY.
Rules here are simple and very primeval - "Keep Going or Get out of the way". This penchant for efficiency and productive non-intrusive outlook hasnt taken away the souls of the populace, if at all the vibrant culture and flourishing art, architecture, music and theatre are any parameters to go by.

Although treated with apparent disdain by the "natives", the vibes in Jersey City are by no means rural or pastoral as the polished cousins across the Hudson would like us to believe. Although its true that NJ is practically majority Indian with a smattering of the other nationalities, the people are smart, glamorous and ubercool too. If you arent up to going beserk in the 7th Avenue shops (after looking at pricetags) or find it ok to breeze in and out of Millenium Hilton (having eaten and paying the bill there) then Jersey City is probably slumming. But I am in the median of the population's per capita income and I like the close-to-home feel of Jersey and am looking forward to shopping in the 'Indian' street in Journal Square, eating at the Indian eateries in Edison, going to the Temple in Bridgewater and visiting Brinda in the family suburb of Brunswick.

An element of surreality is the place where I live, its a luxury furnished apartment in a high-rise and it overlooks the Newport Marina (where the rich people park their yachts), the Hudson river and the eternal lights of the Manhattan skyline. I have a doorman with a reception desk (replete with the uniform and the gold buttons) and my lobby looks like something from a Karan Johar movie set. To make things worse, I practically occupy the whole house by myself and have gotten even more spoiled with my idea of "space".

Independance and Freedom is in every atom here - you cook if you want or go out and eat, you stay in if you want or go jogging at 1 AM on the Hudson walkway, you save-up if you can or go shopping at the Newport Mall, you can drive or walk where ever or take a train to anyplace, you can internalize all you want and no one will bother you or you could surround yourself with people and be out all the time; Its your choice and there are no constraints here [except those of the financial kind, which we will not focus on just to keep our sanity].

In short, I am living it and loving it- the Desi take on the American Dream.

Happy at last,
Rain

Sunday, August 26, 2007

The Ultimatum

With the weekend and having to stay immobile for the nursing of the sprained ankle, I naturally turned to the movies and saw - My Sassy Girl, Kanda Naal Mudhal, Chak De India, YOu Me and Dupree, Bourne Ultimatum, so far.
No prizes for guessing which one of the movies is my absolute craze!

I am a HUGE fan of the Robert Ludlum written trilogy that the movies were inspired from and am usually hard to please with the movie interpretation even if I hated the book; but Paul Greengrass has done such a slick, smart job with the revamped version of the Bourne adventures as to actually meet with my approval!

The third installment- The Bourne Ultimatum is my total favorite from the trilogy as its an out and out thriller in the action genre and the pace of the movies never sags. You will never see the lead character spend time in the mundane activities like - eating, sleeping, walking in a normal pace. He is always on an overdrive, hopping between countries with the ease of visiting your bathroom, speaking in the local language with the fluency of the local (Russian, Spanish? Not a challenge to our behaviorally modified hero), having no concern for anything remotely fiscal (some bottomless bank account he has...), dodging bullets, saving the maiden (who is not a Bimbo, refreshingly enough, nor his love interest!), finding the truth about himself, dealing with his scattered memories, exposing the 'Big Brother' ruthlessness of the CIA and jumping from the rooftops with feline grace and aplomb. I am smitten!

If you want to know the story [which I admit, takes the backseat in the last 2 bourne movies], I would recommend, renting the DVD or better yet watching in the Theatre with friends who appreciate this movie!

The Soundtrack of the Bourne Movies is embodied by the very stylish sounds from the very addictive "Extreme Ways" by Moby. I believe that techno doesn't have "heart" but Moby's songs are an exception to this. I have been listening to the song in a loop since i finished the movie.
Click here to visit the page and select to "watch" for 'Extreme ways' [although I recommend closing your eyes and visualizing Bourne creating havoc internationally, set in tune with the sounds playing!]
I loved the ending (inspite of knowing that its going to happen)...even though it didn't exactly tie up all the loose threads (possibility of more Bournes?). This is the first Ultimatum that I thoroughly enjoyed. :D

Bourne-Again,
Rain.

A Twist in the tale...

Was it the gemstone earrings sent with a special dash of my parents' blessing? Was it that Saturn moved away from the house of my sign? Was it just that there was an opportunity and my current team thought me expendable? Who knows or cares?
All that needs to be highlighted is that I have just completed my last day with a project I was involved in for the better part of my entire career and am moving on to a new Project, new role in a new team in a new location. If that wasn't enough of a twist in the story, I went to the Bryan Adams concert on a totally wet night and simply because we turned up, our lawn tickets were upgraded to the enclosure ones!
One blemish on the exuberance of the entire evening was my flare up with Gow [Who decided to be behave like a complete *&*%@#$&*#@% without any reason]. Some good friendships die this way...
With a fresh new start to life, I decided to revamp my wardrobe with clothes selected by people with some aesthetic sense of fashion and had a happy time doing so, the last weekend. Since Parveen and Aafia are back to India by this tuesday, they came with us too and we had a total blast!
First time in my adult life I feel like I look good [my fruitless attempts at losing weight aside] and people agree with me [isn't that a first ever occurrence of that or what?]
Just when we thought things will settle down now, I had a very uncomfortable last week with farewells everyday [after which people looked continually surprised to see me haunting the corridors, as if I was some undead creature]. I have been parroting to everyone I see that I will continue in my cube until the end of the first week of September when I actually leave.
After jubilantly surviving the "Official" last day, when I was just walking home last night I managed to keep my life eventful by inadvertently spraining my ankle but twisting it, might I add - powerfully.

As a result my plans to quench my thirst for knowledge at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History and Art were fizzled out and I had to end up apologising to the 2 kind souls who had agreed to accompany me in the first place - Srividya and Vicky.

So I am now getting used to being waited on and being handed my food and anything else I would like ;)
It also helps that my friends are calling in every part of the day - morning, afternoon, evening and night to check on my condition, making me feel really cherished. Only furrow in my happy face is the worry that my ankle might not heal in time for my first day in the new project - Monday or further that it might remain weak during my much awaited, long anticipated, most carefully planned vacation to the Grand Canyon [woo hooooo!]

Having so much free time and restricted movement, my thoughts turn to the 2 movies I have seen recently - My Sassy Girl [Thanks to the persistent effects of SriVidya] and Kanda Naal Mudhal [Which I have seen so many times, I can't count]
The Girl being naturally more dominant than the Boy, slapping the guy is common to both. Needless to say, I enjoyed it as a variation of the usual, man slapping some sense to the girl approach that works so wonderfully in the Indian Movies [Stereotypically, of course].

The count down to my GrandCanyon trip, the NY Move and the India vacation is a constant ticker in my mind :D [Yaaaaaaaaaaaay] and it gets me through the day.

Upbeat despite the swollen ankle [or is it too much icecream?]
Rain

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Lucky Sevens...

07/07/07 was supposed to be the luckiest day of the century, so much so that lots of couples married that day, mothers delivered that day (planned c-section, I assume) and there was a lot of praying and contrastingly merry-making.

To me it was just another saturday- waking up late, talking to my folks, playing with the baby...
But I got lucky when the performance I was slated to go to but was routed off to someone else, came back to me at 5 PM. Within the hour, I found myself in the Post-Gazette Pavilion listening to REO SpeedWagon perform live....
Those numbers they belted out were older than I was and still they rocked. Styx followed suit and got the crowd on their feet, then came the main act - DEF LEPPARD.
That's right, Ladies and Gentlemen, Rain has attended, enjoyed and freaked out at a DEF LEPPARD Concert!

Aug 4 and 5 are back-to-back unmissable concerts with Korn and Evanesance followed by none other than the master himself, Bryan Adams; in the very same hallowed venue where Aerosmith played last June with Motley Crue opening for them (which I missed, unfortunately).

I dont know how I will manage, but I will attend those concerts as well...God willing.

Somebody up there likes me :)
Rain

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Its just a little____

A picture is worth a thousand words and a thousand words arent enough to describe what I am about to say. But I dont quit. Here goes-









I

Friday, June 15, 2007

I am Human and other songs

The reaction to this title can be twofold. The usual one is - "I noticed" and the more whimsical one would be - "Really? You don't say!"
Ha ha aside, this is the name of the song that my sister and I used to like, when the titles of "Charmed" came. After a sudden refresh of memory, I googled the song out and here are the lyrics:
I am the sun
I am the Earth
All the shyness that is criminally vulgar
And some of them
Are nothing in particular

You shut your mouth
How can you say
I go about things the wrong way?
I am human and I need to be loved
Just like everybody else does

It's just sad that you have to go
You could be somebody
That really loves you
So you go and you stand on your own
And you go home
And you cry and you want to die

And you say it's gonna happen now
But when exactly do you leave?
See, I've already waited too long
And all my hope is gone

You shut your mouth
How can you say
I go about things the wrong way?
I am human and I need to be loved
Just like everybody else does
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The other show soundtrack I really liked and hunted for- Superman by Lazlo Bane from 'Scrubs' [That Zach Braff is a dish!] Its very sweet, earnest and full of common man's angst:
Out the door just in time
Head down the 405
Gotta meet the new boss by 8 a.m.
The phone rings in the car
The wife is workin' hard
She's running late tonight again

Well
I know what I've been told,
You got to work to feed the soul
But I can't do this all on my own
No, I know, I'm no Superman
I'm no Superman

You've got your love online
You think you're doing fine
But you're just plugged into the wall

And that deck of tarot cards
Won't get you very far
There ain't no hand to break your fall

Well
I know what I've been told
You gotta know just when to fold
But I can't do this all on my own
No, I know, I'm no Superman
I'm no Superman

That's right

You've crossed the finish line
Won the race but lost your mind
Was it worth it after all

I need you here with me
Cause love is all we need
Just take a hold of the hand that breaks the fall

Well I know what I've been told
Gotta break free to break the mold
But I can't do this all on my own
No I can't do this all on my own
I know that I'm no Superman
I'm no Superman
I'm no Superman

Someday we'll be together
I'm no Superman
Someday
Someday we'll be together
Someday
I'm no Superman
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The draw for me is that, they both are really good songs and they are unpretentiously frank about the fact that they don't deal with anything in superlatives. Not about rich, strong or beautiful people doing extraordinary feats or landmark achievements. Not your usual song about love, scorned love, spurned love or soured love. Best of all- it is not a garish flesh display with lyrics on the anatomy. These songs embrace the aspects of being just human - pain, sadness, frustration, hope, love [but in a tasteful quantity], dignity, acceptance and chance.

Then I began to look for more compilations oked by Zach Braff then I found out that the song I raved about in my earlier post called 'Let Go' by frou frou [voice-Imogen heap] was his choice for his movie- 'Garden State', which he scripted and directed [what is not to love?]. So I began to look for more songs he selected and two songs from the same band featured in the soundtrack - New Slang and caring is creepy, both by The Shins. I think both are 'grow into' type of songs, very cerebral and intense, once again angst ridden and open to misery of existence.

These new crop of songs and artists are the next generation of alternate indie rock, ready to take the baton from the likes of REM, Oasis [to a limited extent], Radiohead, Nirvana [who's sound I identify with though I cant figure out why], Red Hot Chilli Peppers [of before], Smashing Pumpkins, Pearl Jam, Alanis Morisette and achieve eternal glory in the universe of the Rock-heads [there arent so many of us anymore...we are a dying breed like the 'Nightwalkers']

I also made a re-discovery of the relevance of retro songs when I chanced upon 'The Thomas Crown Affair' (original starring that dashing Steve McQueen) and listened to the award winning 'Windmills of your mind' which is almost poetic in its lyrical appeal, its about someone dealing with their feelings after the end of a relationship. Its not very exceptionally sung, but its very attractive in its sound -
Round,
Like a circle in a spiral
Like a wheel within a wheel,
Never ending on beginning,
On an ever-spinning reel
Like a snowball down a mountain,
Or a carnival balloon
Like a carousel that's turning
Running rings around the moon
Like a clock whose hands are sweeping
Past the minutes on its face
And the world is like an apple
Spinning silently in space
Like the circles that you find
In the windmills of your mind!

Like a tunnel that you follow
To a tunnel of its own
Down a hollow to a cavern
Where the sun has never shone
Like a door that keeps revolving
In a half-forgotten dream
Like the ripples from a pebble
Someone tosses in a stream.
Like a clock whose hands are sweeping
Past the minutes on its face
And the world is like an apple
Spinning silently in space
Like the circles that you find
In the windmills of your mind!

Keys that jingle in your pocket
Words that jangle in your head
Why did summer go so quickly?
Was it something that I said?
Lovers walk along a shore
And leave their footprints in the sand
Was the sound of distant drumming
Just the fingers of your hand?
Pictures hanging in a hallway
or the fragment of a song,
half-remembered names and faces
but to whom do they belong?
When you knew that it was over
Were you suddenly aware
That the autumn leaves were turning
To the color of her hair?

Like a circle in a spiral
Like a wheel within a wheel
Never ending or beginning
On an ever-spinning reel
As the images unwind
Like the circles that you find
In the windmills of your mind
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Its great to sample new songs and sounds as I had stuck to the old favorites for the past year.
Opening my mind to newer horizons via my auditory sense, which also reassures me that I am not deaf as I suspected, you know, with prolong use of head phones and all...

On an unrelated note, I have been promised some footage in another blog, Mythoughtwaves, that is penned (or keyed, if you will) by the very comprehensive blogger - VJ. Lets see if he keeps his word and soon my fame can re-spread :)

Active Listener,
Rain


Saturday, June 09, 2007

My Rocking Life

If there is one aspect of my living in the land of milk and honey that is hands-down without a bad side, not even a gray lining and is 100% Agmark certified all Good, then its this – I can go to rock concerts here.

I got into rock at around age 13 and have stayed firm to that despite being comfortable with my other aspect of enjoying carnatic vocal and instrumental with all my iyer proclivity for it. Soon as my sister grew up, I had a partner in crime and she took to the genre of music like fish to water. Then we had a in-sync period where we would shut ourself in the room, block out all sources of light – natural or otherwise and headbang without inhibition to the raw and elevating sounds of Metallica and U2. Our parents knew about it, yet they were too scared to see us showing symptoms of possession, so generally let us do out thing uninterrupted.

Then the disciple took over from the Guru and went leaps ahead; she turned traitor to the cause of legitimate rock and became a boy-band fanatic like all the air-headed pre-teens. She decided that she didn’t think techno was too synthetic, embraced mainstream western music in all its commercial crassness and we started to go our separate ways since.

Here, I met Gowtham in September of 2006 and learned that he is one of ‘us’ [Us being the lost tribe of Rock worshippers who all died out when natural selection favored pop worshippers]. He told me that I had missed going to the Aerosmith open-air concert, right here at the steel city [AEROSMITH – I am not worthy!!!…*groveling actions*]. We then proceed to, as a group (having been joined by the ultra cool Avanthika) haunt the nearby concerts, thus providing me to strike off the following Gods of Rock from my list of “Perfomances to see before the artists die…” [I mean, C’mon they live lives of – Heavy Fuel a.k.a Sex, Drugs and Violence]

Guns and Roses


The debate of Slash vs. Axl Rose aside, this was a totally awesome experience and I was so thrilled to be right there when the strains of ‘November Rain’ filled the stadium. Me and fellow rock head Gow went all out and fell for ‘There was a time’ from the forthcoming Chinese Democracy and I will be happy to endorse that there is a whole lot of ROCK in GnR left to unleash into the mundane universe!


Nickelback

What is not to love about Nickelback? They are a quintessential basic rock band – heady guitar and drums sounds, Meaningful lyrics and a very good frontman. We had a totally wonderful time at the concert, despite us reaching there a full 3 hours after the concert began [thanks to Friday evening office traffic at downtown Forbes Avenue], our loss was missing Three Days Grace play. I wore my ‘Motley Crew’ rock Tee and got appreciation from the passersby and then I knew (probably for the first time) what complete acceptance by a crowd feels like!


That was the day I taught Aafiya to make the universal symbol of rock, which she is yet to master, and say “Rooooocckkkk!” with attitude, which she has down to pat :D




G3 – Joe Satriani

This one was not my idea. Admittedly I listened to ‘Rubina’s Blue Sky’ on some lazy Saturday afternoon in fm and introduced Joe Sat to my sister. I don’t accept any responsibility to the consequences which finally have now led to her becoming the High Priestess of G3 worship. Any how, Gow and Sow by their independent efforts sold me into going for this concert. My hesitation was incremented by the fact that the concert happened 2 weeks after my having imitated Jill [who came tumbling after] in my staircase. Nevertheless, I went, it was a different parallel universe where were almost no vocals and Guitar was all and I was glad for the learning.

Now I am all hungry to catch the following (In no particular order or associated priority) –

  • Aerosmith
  • Sting
  • Bryan Adams
  • U2
  • Metallica
[At the mention of each of these illustrious names, the author goes back into grovelling slave mode]

These are just in my “MANDATORY” tag. I would love to catch other performances of significant bands and Individuals who I admire, during my stay here, given of course the requirements of - company to go with, travel to and from venue, reasonable ticket prices are met.

Let me wind down the post, by dedicating it to Gowtham who married a wonderful girl called Kavi on 6th in Chennai.
Congratulations Buddy!
God Bless and hope you guys, ROCK!

Rain

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Yet another Pool post

Water is a very expressive element and it has given its siren call to bring me back into its fold. When someone decides to go the Metallica way and decides that not caring for what people will say works best for them, it brings a certain kind of freedom that not many legit people get.

I am no Michael Phelps or Ian Thorpe but I like swimming and I no longer care that people I know will get to see me in a suit (which is a misnomer, since it doesn’t really ‘suit’ me in the conventional sense of the term) so I took the pool pass and decided to spend my summer usefully.

The first time back in the pool was like reincarnation- very dicey at first but it all comes back with a wonderful sense of blurring the gap, the time when you had stayed landlocked. This time was especially good because I was the only swimmer and made me feel like those filthy rich retired CEOs who have houses overlooking Central Park where Spanish nannies take their twins every evening. Oh yeah, two lifeguards who’s only mission was watching me (in case I decide to drown in 5 feet of water). A nice couple of kids, I felt, probably students from CMU, UPitt or Duquesne because they alternate between playing videogames on their phone and studying fat books.

I started off at 5 feet and the width of the already miniscule pool was a challenge to hold a single breath and cross. But I was relearning fast, before the end of 10 minutes I was able to hold breath and flit across. Then alternating every lap with backstroke and progressively increasing the depth, I finally reached the deepest part – 9 feet.
At that point, I realized that all fear of the water, breathing, depth and drowning had completely left me with even a slight trace of hesitation and sweet elation filled my thoughts.

Life is so simple when you are swimming on your back; all you can see is the endless sky and peacefully transitory clouds and all you think about is your breathing.
Freestyle is slightly less pretty, with a working pair of swimming goggles you can see all the dirt at the bottom of the pool in absolute clarity and if you suspect that you might be mildly obsessive compulsive then its better your eyes are closed.

So I waded, swam, floated, dived and played around for as long as I wanted and then I got out, the ugliness of life wafted in – I was sticky, feeling hot and breaking into angry red rashes. The allergy made sense when I recollected the state of cleanliness the bottom of the pool was in. But all the blotches aside, the best thing I ever did for myself lately has been to buy the pool pass.

The next pool post will be about mortgages and mutual funds, just for a change because I decided that any chance I get to flaunt my scholarly knowledge in Capital Markets, I must use.

Moral of the story: Water good, Land bad. No, no, just kidding…or am I?

Water sign,
Rain

Monday, May 28, 2007

Back from black

Blogging is a love, a saviour when I felt my mind slipping away into a semi-coma from the frustrations of life. I gave up on it because of intense irritation from some other disgusting, gross, needlessly painful phase. I wanted to clear my head and purge some rank, septic elements from there before I approach something I used to do well and used to love doing.

Something worth doing should be worth doing well and writing requires a good focussed head. I I am proud to say I am past my demons, I have come to terms with the bad decisions I made on who to trust to what extent and I think I have broken clean from the quicksand. I have returned to reading, news, movies, public speaking and prayer...things that enrich me and make me happy.

Writing would definitely follow those because this is the activity that requires most work, research, interest, commitment. In short, you have to be in the zone, in sync with your universe, chi should flow uninterrupted otherwise it would never work. You could stare at your empty 'Create' page in Blogger all week and NOTHING; Well meaning, interested, bossy or sycophantic people could dedicate their lives to inspiring you to hit the keys again for a range of reasons and go unnoticed, a parade of muses could catwalk across your couch where you are sprawled and you wouldnt waggle your toe, vastly illuminating experiences can occur and scintillating insights could have been gained and you would be frozen in front of your keyboard.

Inertia can corrode a writer's soul but writing when your heart's not in it will take you a peg down when you gaze at the mirror tomorrow. Rather write good when you can than write however but regularly. [echo of- rather reign in hell than serve in heaven, apparently I identify with Lucifer]

Long story short, this is not excuse, its just a sounding board of affirmation, a continuity of writing from the fragments of the motivated posts of long ago. Internalizing was good, it was a cleansing experience to be out of my everyday environments and all that it entails.
Expenses aside, Jersey and Niagara were good to me and my psyche.

It is nice to be me again. Rather be alone than in bad company.
Writing is my way of speaking to the world without actually going through the unnecessary building of casual, semi-formal and random interpersonal relationships that do more harm than good. As escapist as that might seem, its more practical for my aims and talents.

May the force be with me,
Rain

Sunday, April 22, 2007

The Late Goodbye

I am disgusted with many things (friendship and career) and wont pollute the universe with my writings tinged with that kind of negativity. There is plenty of that everywhere already and there isn't any need for my contributions.

I hereby state that I will next write only when I have something good to write about.

Bye.
Rain

Friday, March 30, 2007

The Fall

To have a fracture, I thought you needed at least some bones. Bones to me, are the ones that are seen in a skeleton (good Ol' Mr.Bones from the Bio Lab) and are used in the human body.
I have gone and managed to hurt the coccyx. Needless to say, its painful and I cant take help from someone else.

Okay, I have a tailbone and I am proud!

It happened this way...so its wednesday evening and Abitha is on her way to Chilis since its the farewell party for Ratheesh and Jay. She met me outside the house and we realised that the camera batteries were still in the house. I was quickly getting down the steps in my platforms when I must've missed one in between and the footwear went flying out and I started to tumble down the stairs. Abitha watched in open mouthed horror as I rolled down some steps, straighted out to sitting position and then came to a bouncing end in the last 2 steps of the staircase.

Looking back, I wager that it was the last two steps that halted the accelerated falling that damaged the tailbone. I quickly got up and went into the house to get the batteries for Abitha after assuring her that I was all right.
I only felt shock and embarassement rather than physical pain then.
Only after they all left and I was peeling potato skins in Zaki's house did the crippling pains begin. Gow also managed to catch a trailer and he felt I should go to a Doctor. Dileep said that the doctor would just apply the pain relief spray and charge me a lot. I decided to wait and watch.

Followed Dileep's medication tips and felt some instant relief, so much so, that I made the fry and went over to his house. On the way, I was paralysed in utter hurt...felt jolts of pain, every which way I moved and just could stay still either. Managed to get into the house with the help of Dileep and came home supported by Abitha and Gow.

cOuldnt sleep the whole night through and next day was too painful to go to office, so worked from home. Thankfully I could get some work done from the stuff I had saved up and the mails.
Felt better in the evening and although the night was a bit problematic again, I was healthy enough to go to office today and do more than a usual day's work.

Everyone screamed at me for coming, but I felt happier that I could bounce back (figuratively speaking, of course) and stand on my own two feet again!

We take small things like running, bending, stretching and jumping for granted. We dont understand the slowness of the aged. We cant be patient around the differently abled.

Some lessons are painfully learnt but remain for life- this is one of those lessons.
Thanks be to God, its over. I am whole again. :)

Why does it hurt when I dont have a tail,
Rain

PS: Mera number (for vacation) kab ayega?

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Trials faced by a Non-Conformist...

Right or wrong is relative, as long as the scope is limited to the individual.
If it doesn't affect anyone else, do whatever you please - that is what freedom
is all about.

Does anyone disagree with the statements above? How wonderful they sound;
and how naive too.Truth is that, we hate anyone who wont fit in to our
little categories and parameters.Rebel, Freak, Crazy...all the terms we use
to address those who have violated the unwritten yet strictly followed codes
of being Normal.

Another truth, everyone is abnormal. We all have some differences from the ideal
normal human.You might leave dishes in the sink for a day, Listen only to Yanni
and nothing else, have a penchant for wearing orange,call your mother 15 times in a day.
...A million differences from 'Normal' behavior.

Its ok to be different. What matters is how we deal with those who
are different from us.

The junta I am forced to share local oxygen with are retired supreme
court judges and self-appointed moral police.They believe that they
are better than me because I am not like them. I pity them.

The worst thing is when 'popular opinion starts floating around...',
which basically translates to a bunch of low-lives standing around
talking about someone who doesn't care about them and passing judgments
on that person. The reason those individuals do this is varied - starting
from superiority complex (+ condescending attitude) to Jealousy
(+inferiority complex), and uncovering a fascinatingly depraved
affinity to poke an olfactory organ into other people's businesses.

So when 'word is out, about you...' then those who weren't part of the first
group, accept it by default. There is simply no thought given to who's opinion
was it, what the relevance is, why at all a bunch of people were standing around
making comments...all such questions dont appear in the mind of the opinion acceptor
since it takes time and CPU utilization to process.

So what do people who are different do?
They conform. So its not normal to shirk away from shopping if you are a girl and
you'd rather play fear on the computer - grit your teeth and go shopping, buy the
pinkest, fluffiest piece of clothing, giggle while you are at it, Show how normal
you are.
Lose your individuality. Get swallowed by the homogenous images created for you.
Why?
To be accepted.
By who? the Nobel prize judgment committee? A person who realized God?
Maybe God him/herself? Nope.
Just a bunch of unemployed gossip mongers, who are the vocal chord of Society.
Why pay heed to such scum? Majority versus Minority. You cant be alone. It
just cant be done.

If I find the guy who invented the saying, "When in Rome...", I can only say that
he better have Life Insurance against death as result of Assault and Battery.
Whether in Rome or Antarctica, You have to be Yourself.

Today its frowned upon to spend extended hours with members of the opposite sex
and they don't like you for that. Tomorrow it might be because you nose is too long...
and before you know it, they try to spot all uniqueness and send them over to the
gas chambers.

Its 2007 but actually, 1984. And the Big Brother looms larger every minute.

Distopianly yours,
Rain

Friday, February 09, 2007

In pursuit of perception...

My creativity raises its lovely head just when my work pile has gone past the roof of my 56-floor office building. Nice. And a warm welcome to it too…

Everyone wonders if I ever made it to California last December. Whether I went past the Phoenix airport, or am I living there, eking out prosperity ‘The Terminal’ style…Just to put all your imaginations at ease.

I went to Sacremento from there. Met up with Bhoomz, Nitin and Kiriti. Headed out that very night to Reno along with Chintamani and Hema. Ran around Lake Tahoe and glided on the snow slopes there, drove along the breathtaking west coast to Monterey Bay and trekked in Big Sur.

Then spent a really wasteful couple of days in outer SFO with a relative, before being rescued by Kiriti in his dashing silver Mustang convertible an onwards to Folsom (where the junta and the action lay)

Booms took me to sight see in SFO after and then the gang (now including the charismatic Tarun and the genius that is Gajanan) set out to do stuff in Vegas that would ‘stay in Vegas’.

Then just a psychedelic flash of the high life began for poor na├»ve me. Didn’t see uncle Sun until vacation got over…our day began at 6 in the evening when we got out of bed and headed to the Casinos- those extravagant illusions of paradise, the roulette tables, the money, the gorgeous people all around.

The flattering fact that my age was verified soon turned into annoyance when it happened every single time [I mean, really, cant you SEE that I am above 18?]

Oh and if you thought that all that travel and all those first time experiences made this hugely exciting for me. You are really wrong!
Did I mention the people?
Did I let you know that we clicked from the word ‘Go’?

Oh Yes. We did. :)
So much so, that I didn’t want to come back to this life!
I still hope to head back there soon enough to join this nefarious and very scintillatingly brilliant band, sometime, somehow…

With just 3 girls, of whom 1 wasn’t counted (that is me J ),there was one proposal and acceptance; that too just minutes before the girl was leaving, in a wonderfully filmi way ( Hemz and King Kumar) and one romance in the making (Mani and Bhooms) – we were a movie all on our own!
Tragedy, Comedy, Romance, Action, Suspense …we had it all.

IF you are wondering abt the tragedy and suspense…well that was supplied by Southwest Airlines, who chose to let the checkin line extend from the gates well on to the highway thus ensuring my morning non-stop back is missed. Since this has happened to me the first time in my rather orderly (Stop snickering, you !) life, I was quite close to tears which greatly amused Bhoomz and Kiriti (who are veterans in taking alternate flights).

So with my 4 hour nonstop having been replaced by a 15 hour travel with 3 insipid hours in Chicago, I spent all of the New Year in very little comfort or/and Happiness.

I sincerely hoped that it would not reflect on the whole year that I missed something that was mine. But that happened inevitably…just 2 days later the promotion announcements came. I have been psychotic since.

My tremendous anger lashed out at nothing and everything, all at once. I reached some woe-begotten corner of my mind where only a handful of saints (Muthu, Booms and Gang, Gururajan…) were able to find me human anymore.

Now do you understand why I haven’t written a goddamn post since?
So this begs the question, why the post now?

The answer is simple. My perspective has changed a teeny-tiny bit.
I got in touch with or got to know in detail about the most horrendous trials and tribulations that these courageous women like Bhoomz, Vinoo, Jsree .etc. have undergone. I realize that they did not even blink at adversity.

They are still dealing with hardships in their personal/professional lives and still take time off to care about me obsessing over my non-issues. This made me feel small and mean.

As god be my witness, I declare, I have no issues at all. Yes, my circumstances are far from ideal. But I have all options open to make things better. I am strong, healthy, young and I mean a lot to my family and friends. I have only good things coming my way.
2007 and any year from here on is MINE.

There have been so many new things this year that promise good times ahead – A lovely Rogue Starter guitar (Thanks Kiriti), A new colleague who is loads of fun (and a self confessed Ladies Man – The one and only Dileep), my flute which made its US trip from the confines of my Pooja room in Chennai (thanks Kiriti for the inspiration), a somewhat clear roadmap to action events of 2007 (thanks to my family and the Colts Queen Brinda), A new club to organize and Head (CognOrators RULE!)

On to becoming a master flutist, guitar goddess (shall catch up with you someday you satanic sibling of mine), successful MBA grad and also a good daughter, sister and friend.
Rain