Thursday, March 31, 2011

Simple. Perfect. Normal

Your life seems perfect and its happening as you see it a you hate it, because everything happens according to a plan, a plan set in motion long before you were born There are no surprises, no accidents. Perfect and boring And to come out it, you do something crazy all of the sudden and the craziness becomes a pattern and again hate the pattern and you decide to become normal agai and again it becomes a pattern. Bottom line: Is there a opening in an asylum?

A sneak peak into my novel, working notes. Comments?

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Oh for the love of marriages!!!

In India, everyone is either getting married, is married or want to get married. When a girl child is born, parents automatically start worrying about the type of husband she is going to get twenty five years later. When a boy is born they automatically mentally calculate the retirement plan which includes a 'sugran' girl as his sons wife who will be cooking food for them. It is right, it is according to plan, it is what is done in the 'samaj' for past so many years. They did it, their parents did it, so did their parents parents.

There is a strategic programming that undergoes the child brain. They are taught mythological stories of Shravan bal who carried his blind parents to kashi on his shoulders. They are told about Ramayana where Ram obeys his parents and goes into the jungle for 14 years and they are told about Sita and Ram, who were faithful to one another till the end of tides. Mahabharata however is mentioned in passing, where the next incarnation of Ram has an affair with a girl older than him or where he organizes his own sister to run away with Arjun, who in turn was married to a woman, who was a common wife for five people. Phew.

My friend was living in Singapore for last four years and came back to India. Surprised as I was with his visit, I inquired.
'Just came to marry,' he said, 'Mother and father are looking for the bride to be.'
The same mother and father whom you had no time to meet in last four years. Obviously his parents and every parent they met thereafter were proud of their son, like an example set up.
As questionable his attitude was, that all suddenly he decided to come back, I realized he was physiologically incapable of taking his own decision and needed his parents help to decide. Also, he would have no value in Singapore but in India his value doubled as a foreign returned husband.

Indians generally fall into common categories. Some feminist who believe in freedom and upliftment of woman are very vocal about the concept of arrange marriage, where a woman is not given a choice at all.
Some modern Indians who claim, 'We do give our child complete freedom and he/she can choose from any girl we ask him too...' believe that love is important but so is caste, culture and tradition.
Some Indians are of the opinion that there is no marriage without love and these people, usually the modern Shahrukh Khan loving, 'friends' enjoying people believe that arrange marriage is the rot that is rotting the indian society. This blasphemous idea is not accepted by the tradition loving, caste based Indian parent who still dread the habits of people in different cast. This indifferent results in creating a confusing and never ending battle between arrange marriage and love marriage and both the sides do not realize that they are fighting the never ending battle against the question of 'marriage'.

A girl who graduated with me in college, got her marriage fixed in her final year. Obviously she couldn't say no as it was recession time and there were less jobs out there. She was systematically programmed that if she cannot get a job she had to marry, that was the plan all along.

If we look back in history, marriage is fist time mentioned in vishnu puran in the story of Parshurama. Parshurama on seeing his mother in love with another man, beheads her for she broke the law of Shvetaketu. Shvetaketu one day saw his mother in arms of another man, horrified he complaint to his father. His father simply said, that woman in the world are free to be with anyone they wish to. Realizing that this would create serious question on parenthood, he started the concept of marriage, where a man and woman are legally bound to each other and cannot see other people unless the partner wishes it. Here Shvetaketu was talking about physical marriage and not emotional marriage. In modern world, physical marriage has nothing to do with the legal marriage and that is not the topic of the post.

Scientifically speaking, marriage is the unification of souls. People feel the emotional void and need a companion to share this with. Biologically a man is comfortable with another female and a female is comfortable with a man. However, this void is temporary, and sooner or later what remains is ego, hungry ego that feeds on dominance over the partner and the world, 'adjust' comes into the marriage.

In olden days there was a social gap where the entire house hold revolved around 'samsara' where the woman was always the housewife and men worked in the society. Now, woman have stepped outside the house, they work shoulder to shoulder with men. The emotional gap that resulted in marriage is fulfilled with the office colleagues during lunch or coffee breaks, resulting in more and more tension in married life.

Obviously I am grossly wrong, I cannot generalize the concept, agreed. But you cannot disagree that 60% of the marriages, love or arranged, are bound to fail and there is nothing anyone can do about it. The concept of marriage is build on emotions, which are fragile, bound to crack and uncertain. The only thing you can do is you can accept it or reject it.








P.s. Some interesting views on marriage by other blogs.
http://www.themisfitgirl.com/2011/03/love-marriages-love-marriages.html by the Misfitgirl
http://unthinkunwind.blogspot.com/2011/03/marriage-mirage.html by Rohini
http://phoenixritu.com/2011/03/marriage-the-great-indian-scam/ by Ritu
http://indianhomemaker.wordpress.com/2011/03/23/marriages-are-sold-to-women-in-a-glossy-cover/ by IHM

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Reserve that Place for me Please

The day begin just like any other, the coffee maker hooted making strange noise proving its existence. I turned up the morning edition of news, to check if any scandal is on today just like always. Witnesses the poetic irony of Japan I felt sad as well as a little nice, we are finally learning we cannot control things. Japan will be a reminder to entire mankind that we cannot control things beyond a certain level, what ensures is total chaos.

Just as always, when I was thinking about chaos, a chaos was heard on the stairs. No wonder the torpedo hit me not physically but mentally as he entered my room.

'This is bullshit,' he said, wasting entire energy on a certain word directly crashed in front of me.
'Coffee?' I politely offered him some.
'Didn't you listen?' he asked, not understanding my gesture that I don't care, 'They now are reserving some places for the Jats too.'

'Congratulations,' I replied turning back to my coffee. The aroma was intoxicating.
'This is totally unfair,' he shouted, 'We should get reservation too...'
Understanding that the discussion was unavoidable I had to answer him, 'I don't think it is unfair, it is fair to the core. The people are backward, dumb and un-progressed they do need reservation.'
'So do my people... we are also backward, dumb... wait what?' he looked at me, finally realizing the hit, 'How dare you call us dumb?'
'I am not calling you dumb, you yourself are calling it aren't you?' I asked sipping the coffee.
'No I am not,' he replied, 'All I am saying is I should get reservation otherwise the people in my community cannot study higher education,' he said.
'So in short, people in your community are so dumb they need reserved seats for them in higher studies,' I emphasized my understand.
'Don't you dare speak so about my community, we have doctors and engineers in our community...' he argued.
'Then, you people are forward and do not need a reservation...' he said.
'No...but...' he froze for a moment and I finally saw a silver lining in the distant, finally I can enjoy my coffee, 'But you people tormented us for 2000 years.'
'No we didn't,' I replied, 'No one tormented you for 2000 years. The people who were tormented are dead and so are the people who tormented them. If we are talking a revenge for the people who lived by, you owe me a hundred thousands.'
'What?' he asked.
'Your great grandfather was my great grand fathers slave as you are saying, he has been absconding since many years from his service. In your own logic if I apply modern laws to ancient things... you are liable to pay me for the services he or his kin missed.'
'You kidding right?' he asked.
'Do I look like I am kidding?' I asked politely waiting for him to remove the cheque book.
'You are a beep beep...' he said loudly and stormed out of the room.
I simply took in the deep aroma of the beautiful coffee in my hand.

Uncertainty is on the rise, as uncertain as I was to choose weather brown socks or black socks will suit better on maroon trousers, he stepped in asking which political side I choose.


'IPL cannot happen without Modi,' he announced without bothering to ask if I am interested in his talk or no.
'IPL is a game right? Who cares about Modi?' I replied, obviously proving my lack of knowledge for the gentlemen game played in the same model as selling gigolos in Chandni Bar.
'You hate him don't you? You hate congress too for what they are doing to the country?' he asked.
'What was the good thing they did in the last few years, apart from maybe bigger, better and sophisticated scams. Not to mention robbing the world on international level?'
'Kalmadi is not a fraud OK, he is framed. You and your BJP will never understand...'
'But who said I support BJP?' I asked, confused.
'Then who do you support?' he asked, 'I know you do not support the Congress...'
'Why should I support either of the two?' I asked.
'Well... you should have a opinion,' he looked at me.
'In a country of 400 million I get to choose only 2 views? Isn't that a bit sad?' I asked, 'And seriously why do I care who comes in power? It is just by choosing between the two evil I have to do right?'
'No wonder people call you crazy...' he replied, 'We are a democratic country and you should choose one of them.'
'Lets say for a while, I admire Narendra Modi, does not mean every person he supports or rejects automatically becomes my enemy or friend does it? It is simply like I like vanilla ice cream, which goes in nicely with chocolate sauce, but does that mean I should have chocolate sauce on it?'
'You are a strange person,' you know that, he replied, finally leaving me in peace.

I simply resumed writing my blog, which was lying dormant for a while. Simply said, the world is as confused as I am about choosing the brown or black socks on the maroon trousers.

True story.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The strange law of Normality

India is a democratic country. Many years ago, on November 26 1949, a bunch of people wrote a document containing 395 articles in 22 parts for a total of 117,369 words to normalize, classify and control a region of 400 billion people. Anything beyond the ordinary was squashed and dumped in the asylum and electrocuted.

When you are born you automatically get the citizenship of the country. You have no choice in it. Then people like me who are not born normal have to wear the mask of normality. Smile at the people who in a 'normal' world would be at the other end of the shotgun. Try to mix with people who usually have a flawed sense of noramilty, who will obey the law like an obidient dog even if their life is shunned and destroyed by it.

Some people will argue that obeying the law is common sense. Its not a compulsory thing but a moral thing, obviously. If 400 million people follow the similar guidelines, natural order follows, everything happens as it should. There are no surprises, no accidents and no trouble at all. Well, obviously if WE all decide to follow rules that is.

The problem is with the laws for 400 million people, all the good things in life are banned, publishable or illegal. Actually thats how laws are made, they enlist all good things and ban them. True story.

The thing about shortcuts is, they help you reach your destination in a quicker time than long distance, obviously the government cannot allow that, so they make those shortcuts into a one-way street. I was quietly trying to reach my girlfriend on time by taking a shortcut (read: wrong way) when a traffic cop caught me.

"Where are you heading too?" he asked, removing my bike keys without even asking. If there was no uniform he would get a big kick, he did not know that.
There was another one standing besides with mouth full of red pan spit. He came closer like a hungry rabid dog towards me.
"License..." he said.
Now with no bike keys and two people in uniform what could I do? Obviously from my size, they both would be pinned down in no second, however they may have been trained by the government, I was a wrestler. But I am a pacifist and I silently said,
"Sorry I came from wrong way, how much is the fine?"

"Don't argue, show license..." he said.

"Is this arguing?" I asked, determined to show them what arguing is, "I simply asked what is the fine amount, I am paying. I am in a hurry and have to time to waste on this."

"It seems you have a lot of money," the traffic cop said. I was about to tell him that my salary is less than the black money they receive in a month and I pay taxes over it, "Give 100 rs."
Now, when he asked for 100 rs. it was understood that it was as a bribe and there would be no receipt.

"No, I don't have any money. I have fifty rupees in my pocket that I am going to spend on the lunch because I am hungry. But I have broken the law and will give you that." I simply said.
"No, the fine is 100 rs." he said.

"I do not have 100 rs. You can check my wallet, don't rob the poor more." this was a bluff, for my wallet had more than 100 but I would not give him.
"Where do you work?" he asked.

"I work in a workshop lifting heavy things and I get this old motorcycle and 100 rs per day." I simply replied.
"Ok give me fifty..." he said and handed me my keys.
I gave him fifty rupees then started again,

"You do know you have committed a bigger crime than me?" I asked, "I simply broke the law by entering in a one-way street, you on the other hand have broken a bigger law by talking a bribe."

"Don't argue," he said, spitting the pan on the street, "Get lost from here or I'll arrest you."
People were circling around us, I quickly put my bike keys in the pocket and replied.

"Think about it sir," I said, "I simply broke a law and so did you. I paid the last fifty rupees from my pocket as a fine to you but you on breaking the law gained fifty rupees. Isn't it sad? if the people who protect the poor start acting this way where should we go?'
He stared at me for a long time, "I say go from here."

"I do not work in a workshop, I am a law student. We are told that cops are the protectors of law while you here are protecting one law breaking another, isn't it wrong?"
"Take your fifty rupees and get lost from here," said the irritated cop.

I took it and simply drove away from there. I felt proud that day, for it was me who broke the rule and it was me to gained from it, no one else.

This is a one-off incident do not try this at home unless you can flex your chest upto five inches and can scare the shit of people by just staring at them. A aviator goggle helps to create aura.

Just to be clear, I don't really care about how corrupt the cops are. If the government told me to stand whole day on the street with all the pollution around and in hot sun, wearing a shitty colored uniform, I will ask for more than hundred bucks, hell, i'll make every person who drives by me, life as hell. It is just that if someone has to die, I make sure its not me. Also I am not a law student, I have a soul, yet.

True story.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Wordmore Wednesday: The curious case of ATM center.

Was seeing Wordless Wednesday a lot on the reader, so decided to write more. Wordmore wednesday. Yeah, I am crazy.

Have you ever gone to the local ATM center on a hot sunny day? Obviously you have, because apparently everyone has to remove money exactly at the same time when the sun is at its peak and you are melting faster than a snow cone.

Have you observed the monkeys at the ATM center? When ATM was invented, it was innovation, get money from any where, any time. Oh yeah, but the innovator forgot to consider the potent of human mind, which has the knack of destroying all new innovation.

There are few curses associated with the ATM center. Like, whenever you are in dire need of money, the ATM center will have 500 bucks or worst 1000 bucks only. Now, in normal cases (read: the first 5 days after your salary) will not be a problem, but after that every penny that sits in the computer is safe. So you leave that money safe behind the ledgers and come out hunting for another ATM machine in the vicinity.

If the curses are not enough around the ATM center, stranger people tend to surround the ATM center. And the length of the line outside the ATM center is inversely proportional to the size of brain of the people using it, for example, a few days ago outside a SBI ATM, a man walked out from the machine.

'The second machine is broken,' he announced to no one in particular. The age old tendency of being Indian, passing advice when no one needs it. People standing in line gave a sign of sadness. Everyone pooled  towards the single machine which was working. Now, I do know the tendency of a human mind to go to odd lengths to prove they did originate from monkeys, so I silent went to see the 'broken' ATM machine. Wonder why I was not surprised to find the machine perfectly fine and I removed my cash and walked away.

People in the line, which I broke to test the broken machine looked at me as if I just parted the red sea for them to walk.

ATM is a private affair, you get a million thoughts while remove the 500 bucks from the machine. For instance, I always remember my mobile bill (even if it paid) whenever I remove cash from the ATM. But obviously if you are living in India, nothing is private affair unless you plan a bigger than 2G scam. There are people who shamelessly stand behind you whenever you are in a ATM center.

Now,  no obviously they mean you no harm, what harm can the village idiot cause you, unless of course kill you in his play? no, they mean you no harm, but cause you horrible discomfort. Not only will they stand behind you, they will also discuss current weather, ATM status and if your day is full of bad luck, also ask inquire about the money that you are removing, just like your colleagues will keep on reminding you that you spilled chutney on your shirt in office again and again. I know.

Then there are those who think ATM is the synonym for Automatic Targeting Machine-gun. They dread the machine so much, that they exercise extreme caution around it, as if the machine is a time machine and they will be ported into another dimension.

Many a times, the machines are eccentric. They not only give you confusion answers, they also make you think. There was a machine near the petrol pump, which gave me a jigjag pattern to press.

Please enter amount:

Yes to Confirm
No to cancel.

Do you want a printed record.
No to cancel
Yes to confirm

WTF. Took me a complete minute to understand. Some ATM are stranger than usual. Due to the age old curse that ATM will not be available when you need it most, I found myself stranded on a deserted street in dire need of money. Opposite the street was ATM from another bank (which I never knew existed till that day) happy with my luck I entered the ATM center and behold, the machine spoke.

'Welcome to ATM center. Please enter you PIN number' in the most horrible voice possible. Doesn't that creep anyone? Remember the days when ATM was a private affair?

Ah so, if you are wondering, I am writing this post from the Blogger for Android  standing in the queue for ATM center and I have not moved a inch since last twenty minutes. The people are different that they were when I stood here. Hmmm. Oh wait.

Gotta run, later.








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Friday, March 4, 2011

Arrange marriage or slave trade, What would you prefer?

Now, if you have read my blog for some time now, you obviously know that when I am not doing fruitless research on stupid theories or planning another mission to blow off the planet, I am busy wasting my time playing games or swyping across my Android.

As a simple man with a complex taste, I carry the agenda, 'Leave and do not disturb if you want to live' but as nature will have it, there will always be someone or the other who decides to check if its ok to poke sleeping dragon and well, end up cursing me loud or carrying heavy burns on his head and mind with my horrible theories.

So there I was sitting peacefully destroying the terrorist camp, again on Dust II (the counter strike edition, you mortals) when he came out of nowhere, now I should tell you, that the person who popped on me was the man of the moral brigade with a capital M. I sometimes wondered if he is the reincarnation of the conscience I abandoned long back or just a eccentric fool who was hit on the head when he was a child. Doesn't actually make any difference.

'I did not like her,' he said.
'Like who?'
'The girl my parents chose for me,' he said.
'Congratulations,' I said, sarcastically, now you will stay virgin for another eternity.
'The girl was nice,' oh dear, he is still talking, 'But she wants to work after marriage...'
His cribbing was not going to stop for a while and the disturbance was spoiling my reputation on the CS underworld, so I politely messaged people AFK (Away from keyword) and turned my attention to the other terrorist in my room.

'What is wrong with it?' I asked, 'If she wants a career, who are you to stop her?'
'Why, I am her husband no?' he replied, 'I do deserve the right to tell her what to do and what not to do...'
'I think you missed a century dude,' I corrected, 'Slave trade was legal in the last millennium, not now...'
'Its not slave trade,' he replied, 'She is my wife, she shares equal rights over house hold.'
'So you will sweep the house with her?' I asked.
'No... that she has to do, it is her duty as a wife.'
'So a girl you are getting will sweep your house, wash your clothes, cook food for you and is not allowed to do any other occupation...' I summarized, 'Pretty much sounds like a slave trade.'
'No its not that,' he tried to reason, 'She gets my salary, she takes care of me and my family, just like my mother did for so many years.'
'So you are happy that you mom acted like a slave to your family for so many years and now you are replacing her with another one?'
'The slave traders atleast sold the slave to other people, here she has to serve you for eternity. No growth opportunity too...'

'You are eccentric you know that?' he asked.
'So when are you meeting her?' I asked.
'My parents have met her grandmother, after they give approval, I am going to meet her parents...' he smiled.
'... So let me get this straight. You are going to spend your life with one person and you are going to meet everyone else in her family except that person?'
'Ofcourse not,' he said, 'I will meet her after I meet her parents.'
'Nice,' I beamed, finally something making sense, 'Meet her at CCD, its very nice joint for meeting...'
'No no no,' he screamed as if he was just sentence to murder, 'We do not have sanskar to meet girls outside, we will be meeting in her house in presence of the elders of the house.'
'Is that the reason why you did not talk to my girlfriend the other day?' I asked.
'Yes,' he replied, 'We carry our cultural tirades very well...'
'Thank God, I thought you had selective mutism and was going to admit you in mental hospital for psychiatric treatment...'
'You are crazy you know,' he replied, 'Indians have their sanskar...'
'... and also have social anxiety which then comes up during your work or your interaction with foreign clients. But the false sense of pride about a flawed culture prevents you from correcting yourself...' I simply replied, matter of fact.
'Don't tell me your argument, I know my culture...'
'What culture, tell me one story in Hinduism where God, princes, king had arrange marriage...' I asked simply.
'You know there this...' he paused, there was a big moment of awkward silence.
'So you see mister, arrange marriage is not part of your culture and marriage is not part of your life too, because you are a sadist pig, who is going to ruin someones life with your eccentric ideas of culture. Stop this slave trade in the name of  culture and go open your eyes to the real world.'

My game was over long back, with the terrorist beating my team with a big score, but somewhere I knew I had won a war that day.







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