Wednesday, June 30, 2021

3463 : Listening to Shafqat vs Shafqat on repeat

This is what bliss definitely looks like.

If time permits, watch it with the video. If it does not give you goose pimples, you are truly different from me.

The orchestral maneuver will completely overwhelm you.

Easily debuts into my Top 100 all time list :-). What a song. 

This is what art should look like. This is what should be what we are inspired to become.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

3462 : Haruki Murakami

Am finishing my next Murakami book. He is slowly but steadily become one of my favorite authors. I like a lot of unusual authors. 

Milan Kundera because he gives me immense insights into my every day.

Samantha Harvey for being poetically true on the journey of life.

Borges for being Borges.

Salman Rushdie for being one of the finest storytellers in the world.

Arundhati Roy for being the perfect 10 on writing always. The way to present an idea comes naturally to her.



And the list goes on.

I like Murakami, because he just draws into a strange place where I feel very mellow and peaceful. Always happens when I read his books. It makes me think of the good points of my life. That is such an unusual outcome. When I was a kid, Richard Bach's book did something similar to me. 

I am a Murakami reading spree. It calms me down, and shares some great wisdom.

Do read Murakami if you have not yet. There is so much to learn from him.

Image from JPVisitor

3461 : Capacity

Human beings have an infinite capacity for choosing unhappiness, even in the happiest of circumstances. 

That is not just oddball, but it rather seems to be wired into us. We inject the "unhappy" into our everyday.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

3460 : Why we write

Came in via twitter, its about movie making. I believe we can apply it to writing to.

I fail on every single count. Hmmmmm :-(

3459 : Choices

We all choose our places of resting. I have made my choice. It's a cold grimy place. 

3458 : Dmb #41

Listening to the 23 minute version of Dave Matthews Band playing #41.
The main motif riff which plays through this jazzy composition is so soothing.
Almost meditative. 

3457 : Shafqat with Shafqat

 Listen to two maestros sing.....Lakh Jatan/Khamaj. Human beings are truly capable of bliss.

And if this does not convince you out for the Symphonic Orchestra.

And finally notice, how the notes dance on their tongues.


3456 : Needle in a haystack

As I have examined myself deeply, I have realized that a lot of my demons are one off. Just that.

And yet, I can pick up that single blemish in a canvas of greatness (or happiness). And that single dot can serve as an anchor (rule of 3 from the photography world), and soon get stuck into our insides, the core (zehan as they say in Urdu)......and till one day all we see is the dot.

That error (or perceived asymmetry) can keep cropping up in our lives, so much so that we define a lot of our lives by it.

I am the culprit. I am the victim. I have banished happiness for 14 years. Sounds familiar?

I am epic.

3455 : Answers

 As the tsunami hit us, the world was being blown away. We figured that if we could keep ourselves anchored, then we could somehow avoid the storm.

So we set about tying things down. Making sure the heavy things became anchors and the lighter stuff was weighed down by the so called immovables.

It broadly worked. We lost little, both of ourselves and our stuff. Through the day we told ourselves, that if something worse did happen, we still had ourselves and our memories.

Evening was upon us. The rain cleared us, but a strong wind remained. We never got to know how, but a tinder sparked somewhere in the home. And soon a full raging fire caught us completely unaware.

The wind, which we had fought so hard in the morning, found a new ally. As we tried to save ourselves and "our things", the "anchors" turned to be our undoing. They formed the resistance, that we had no answer to.

The pyre had been light, all we could do, was watch as it consumed and consigned. In a few hours, all was gone.

As Dylan said, it was all blowing in the wind. Years later, I often still wonder - what exactly were the answers, that I missed?

Saturday, June 26, 2021

3454 : Afreen Afreen by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and Momima Mushteshan

I am a Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan fan. Always have beem and always will be.  I like Afreen Afreen due to NFAK, Javed Akthar and Lisa Ray.

And then Rahat Fateh Ali Khan covers it in Coke Studio and the version is 10X better than the original. I never thought I would admit to it.

It's a fascinating video watch. Mesmerizing to watch Rahat. Also, Momina is so outstanding. What a contrast she offers to the main scale and time.

The harmony of the original was great, this one is just genius.

Listen and be spellbound.

3453 : The creative process

Listening to Vidya Vox's Fly Away - at 3:22, the other signer (Mattibani), does something totally unexpected - she sings in Gujrati "I am sometimes spicy (not hot....but the chilli hot)"....and then she does the sound- which each of us does when we encounter a chilli in our food. And the music pauses - to let us all savor the absolute genius gesture.

Great music is that which breaks the structure (I am a Jazz fan and a Hindustani fan), not the one that sticks to structure (Carnatic as an example).

I am not expert, but am more and more convinced that breaking a rule is so much more delightful....especially when you least expect it.

Also - how fun must have been the creative process been between Vidya and the other singer - would have loved to be in the room, as they came up with that almost mic drop gesture :-)

3452 : Battleground

The fatigue is on me. The weapons are ready. I am preparing for war. The countdown of attrition.

I stand my ground. Deep breath. Adrenaline mixing its shores within the blood. 

We now transformed this earth into an arena. I am ready for your jugular.

3451 : The futility of my art

I don't think of myself as a great poet. But poet I am. I read copious amounts of poetry.

And yet, I know acutely that poetry is nothing like a personal puzzle - a small game we play within our own head. A highly abstracted game involving word play and language. 

It is also a mechanism to convey insights (like a koan), but rarely used like that anymore.

My art is just a trivial little game. That's it.

Friday, June 25, 2021

3450 : In all shapes

This story might highlight a classic failing of us, or me. Our desire - to constantly fit in, make other fit in, and to classify.

So on my walk in the complex, I sometimes encounter this couple, both in their 30s. They are very "richly dressed". The casualness that comes with money. They are both carrying some sort of laptop sleeve, so you know they are on some sort of work or assignment.

Almost every time I see them walking from some place (have to figure where), towards a particular spot where they park their car. They walk slowly, measuredly. They are talking all along. Once they reach the car (and its their car, more on that later!!), they put their stuff out on the bonnet or the top of the car. 

On most days they stand near the car and talk. Now sometimes they also smoke. On some other days, only he man spokes, and the girl does not. 

My walk takes me through the point every 10 minutes. On days, I have passed them 4 times, so about 30-40 minutes.

Once, I have also seen them open the car, take the front seats and then gingerly drive off. So its their car, sure of that.

About them - they have the comfort of two deep intellectual friends. If they were just work colleagues, that would shallow (I mean the intellectual comfort). Maybe they are in a startup together, but still their comfort is way too endearing. They could be lovers, but I don't think they are. Are they fab friends? Could be, but they don't laugh enough together. Also, sometimes the girl naturally extends her hand (they stand facing each other) on the other's shoulder, as if to take support. She is shorter than him, so looks at an acute angle into him. They look deep into each other's eyes as they talk. Could they be siblings? Unlikely. Married already? Almost impossible :-).

See - what I mean - this desire to classify - to force fit them into a structure. I have obviously made a lot of mental notes on this topic, which I should ideally needn't have, though I enjoy these sojourns.

Finally, one other thing which also intrigues me is - if it is their car, and it indeed is, then why don't they just dump their stuff inside, as soon as they reach it. They can still smoke, talk - whatever. I would not keep my iPad on the boot or the bonnet. That's very odd. 

I look forward to seeing them. There is so much everyday life teaches us. Especially about lack of shapes.

3449 : When rubber hits the road

I find my morning coffee or tea immensely meditative. I usually hate sitting with others and having it. That's me :-), yes.

There is something magical about having a good cup of coffee and tea, and realizing how many people have conspired to make it happen. Especially excellent coffee. (My general sense is coffee is far too much complex as compared to tea, but that could be my bias.....also possibly because coffee for me is usually black, while tea is milk, spices and I never get to taste tea for what it is....or rarely do).

Coming back, about 20 hands have blessed a good cup of coffee at least - including your employer who pays you a salary to afford this.

Coffee also makes me look inward. It's my choice of poison - like whiskey or wine.

And poison tips our arrows. Those of time.

Thursday, June 24, 2021

3448 : Sinkhole

You seem to carry so much of a burden. I want to reach out and tell you that whoever carries so much weight inevitably sinks. Some slowly, some in a spate of bubbles. 

As I approach you, (to talk), I realise I carry so many sacks myself. That thought makes me recoil and introspect. Also, how many rocks from me get apportioned to you - and are contributing to your drowning?

I am on the lifeboat. Still seeing you slowly sinking. Don't even put out my hand (to help). You will find a resting place at the bottom, my dear.

3447 : Truth vs Lies

I was reminded of this quote from Chernobyl the series that I loved.

What is the cost of lies? It's not that we'll mistake them for the truth. The real danger is that if we hear enough lies, then we no longer recognize the truth at all. What can we do then? What else is left but to abandon even the hope of truth and content ourselves instead with stories? In these stories, it doesn't matter who the heroes are. All we want to know is: "Who is to blame?"

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

3446 : Vidya Vox Fly Away

I know I have just posted on this last week, but I am so totally addicted to this song. 

It's a complete ear worm. It has some of the most unexpected aspects of composition......and love the surprise they spring on you.

On a related note, what makes the creative folks do they strange hoops (unexpected turns). If you are listening on an audio streaming - watch out for 2:30 where Vidya gets humming and repetitive......and then at 3:22 the sudden flip on the music.


3445 : Joy

 BMW used to have tag line called Joy, and I must say its one the sassiest branding heists in my head. I love BMW and if you have driven the 3 or 5 series, you will know why.

Its pure unadulterated Joy to drive. It's a pain to own in India - so I WILL NEVER own one. That should settle that debate..

But I get to drive something that gives me just as much Joy. I drive a Suzuki VStorm 650. Just went out for a quick spin. Its phew!! Just pure delight.

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

3444 : Two sides of a story

She thinks he needs to pay alimony. A few million rupees per year. She also thinks, he should be an active father to their son.

He believes he had already paid an enormous price for over 5 years in the divorce's process. The additional alimony seems unfair. "Does she not have a job? Why does she need me to pay her an upkeep?". Is being away from the son, not a punishment itself?

She knows he got away easily. She could have asked for the house too. All she has asked for some monies for the kid and his education.

He feels he is paying blood money, to buy his rightful freedom. He hates the bindings. He detests her. 

She is looking forward to a life of slowly building and repairing her wings. She does not want him around, but will tolerate him for the son.

He is already building a Tinder profile. He does not like her; she brings the worst out in him, he will stay away from the son, to be away from her.

She hopes to fly again. He wishes for freedom.

Is it a wonder they split?

3443 : Do as I say, not as I do

She brought us up single-handedly. Sister and I always looked up to her. We saw her cook, teach, clean, repair, monitor contractors, build a house, fight off men, and even light the pyre of our dead. She could pray in the tone of suprabhatam, or she would some days be dancing in the dark. 

My sister studied in an excellent school, was way brighter than me. She also had a deep desire to make this world a better place. Eventually, after a gruelling study set, and an equally depleting masters degree, she choose to work in the petroleum sector - she wanted to help rigs turn green. 

When my sister announced to both of us, that she was going to be on rigs for a good quarter at a time, She, who brought us up, asked my sister, in chaste Tamil, "Did you have to choose these jobs meant for a man? Could you have not chosen to bank or an equivalent desk job?"

3442 : The passer by

I was speaking to a friend, who brought up this story - what if the world is a simulation. To an atheist like me, it is not just a possibility, its dancing in the clues.

So my friend is influenced by Elon. I am influenced by my view of the world. Even if it is nota simulation, it's becoming akin to a skin on the snake.

What we see of the world is just a fraction of what we can comprehend. That's a function of society. What we dont see in the world, is a fraction of what we cannot comprehend. That's a function of physics. 

Let's stick to society. Our world is to get dimmer and dimmer with the technology we have built around it. Social networks amplify our biases. The governments create biases. Godmen sell nuisance. God itself is fleeting into oblivion. The games we play have no concrete meaning, yet we play them, because we do believe that it is the only game in town.

If the Buddha extolled us to lay bare the layers, our minds on the other hands are miles deep into rabbit holes. 

Does this feel like a simulation? Does this feel like a glitch in our time-space? Does it feel like we don't belong? Am I the only one who looks up at the sky and wonders - what are the other trillion trillion stars up to today?

Monday, June 21, 2021

3441 : Rocket with blast velocity

Every day, I see you grow up a bit more. I am happy that you have a future. And hope. And a belief.

I know acutely that I might be on a reverse countdown. Like a rocket. Steady, simple and counting down. 

All roads to the future. So says the maps app. I have been typing in the search box "1999 January" far too often. Of course my search history is confusing it. Someone back in the team is wondering which part of the earth did they miss out?

As they ponder, time continues its march. Every day, I see you grow up a bit more.

3440 : Tired

I feel very tired today. Too much on my plate, too much on my mind. I should disconnect for some days. Possibly.

The fear I carry is - my fate will still await me. On the other side of my break, I mean.

So much human effort goes into doing nothing. Spinning your wheels on a treadmill. 

3 disconnected sentences. Thats the state of my mind.

Sunday, June 20, 2021

3439 : Controversial

On certain days, the controversies of my life deeply bother me.

I am not good at letting go of topics - till I find the answers. That's the dangerous combination with "controversies".

3438 : Rowdy Baby from Maari 2

There is nothing to dislike in this song. A complete foot stomper of a number.

The more you listen though - you realise it has some really fine elements of harmony built into it. And like jazz, it moves through scales effortlessly.

Listen and be enthralled. I dont know of anyone who does not love this number.

3437 : Khudkhushi

My discovery (song) for this week is Khudkhushi from Yaara. What a composition. Focus on the lyrics.

3436 : What happens at the movies.....

They stole our memories at the movies - Orhan Pamuk

3434 : What a number.....

 Thats the post number :-)

3435 : Listening to Rajan Sajan Mishra singing Hamsadhwani

A song I have heard so many times before. Bliss.

3433 : Crazy

In a sky full of people, where only some want to fly......

From Seal's Crazy.

3432 : What is immortality ?

 What is poetry to me? Poetry is a delightful play of words. We could call it prose, if that suits us.

Is it nothing more than a play of words? It also conveys an idea, in a neat insightful manner. A la koan.

Is it just an insight and the games it plays in your mind? No, its also about the beauty that is built into the narrative. The beauty from an intense experience - be it love, pain, anger or even disgust.

So its about strong emotions? Not just that. A poetry by its very nature is reacting to the world, either the world around us, or our very own internal world. So this magic is also also about how we interact and absorb the world around.

As we immerse the world in, we truly - each in our own way, try and live better. With more empathy. From our own contexts.

Everyday, it makes me realize that there is so much beauty and experience in the world around us. Poetry makes me want to be immortal. 

Friday, June 18, 2021

3431 : Vidya Vox

My recent find in music has been Vidya Vox.

If my daughter ever sings like this - I shall be such a gloat.

What talent.

I am listening to her compositions. I loved Fly Away the most.

3430 : Astell and Kern PE51

I indulged.

Bought the Astell and Kern PEE51. Its essentially a digital amplifier packed into a USB. But its not simply an amplifier, does a little more to process all elements of digital music.

I have not heard hifi music yet, but even spotify is performing like Tendulkar :-)

Easily one of the best monies I have wasted :-). The soundstage transformation is beyond impressive. Just blows the music out into the room.

Get one if you can afford it. Will make your phone sound like a stage.

My sample song was 

My earphone was/is Marshal 4090940 - I like the slightly tinny sound it produces. is where I bought it from.

The song which is playing now.....(don't judge me)....also rocks the device out.

Finally closing with Dave Brubeck quartet's Take Five. The jazzy notes as groovy as they can.

Thursday, June 17, 2021

3429 : What defines me

Introspective today. Thinking what defines me. Is there something special about me?

I don't have a suitable answer. I don't have a special skill. I am generalist who is good at many things on a 7/10 scale. Am I 9.9 on anything? Not sure (unless you count Grandmaster level Suduko :-))

Generalist me :-)

This is the post.

3428 : Cancel me

I know (or fear) that one day I shall be cancelled. My past is far too contentious for a normal politically safe white space.

I have lived on the edge, and though I am not proud of it - neither am I very apologetic for it.

As an example - I was a truant child. Have I asked my parents to forgive me? A million times. I am a difficult person to be married to? Have I genuine penitence for my spouse? Of course. I have had my biases regarding class, caste and privilege. Do I feel ashamed for it? Undoubtedly.

Will one day, some woke person discover this  - and cancel me from our society?

Possible. I have seen this twice (not just once) in my life. And every time recouping from "cancel" is very hard - both on the soul and the body.

On days when I feel low or insecure about this - I tell myself - that the candle is burning from both sides. May the one who wants to win, burn faster.

3427 : Talking about a revolution

 I was listening to Tracy Chapman's Talking About a Revolution - and it occured to me, that my memory of my past - is exactly that. A revolution. 

Obviously biased. Horribly angled. And yet full of purpose and direction.

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

3426 : Panchforon

I liked this song immensely.

Came in a as a recommendation from Deepthi.

3425 : The higher men

I live in a large apartment complex of around 4000 families. We share a common public road, which is home to about 50 stray dogs. 

Today, I saw one stray possibly injured - it happened before I reached there - by a bike. The bike delivery folks do drive quite fast and we have far too many blind turns in the complex. So its possibly one of them hit this dog.

There are about 50 of us walking in the complex (at any given point in time). So at least 50 of us (from the complex) and another 50-100 vehicles must have passed this bleeding dog. We/us are constantly isolating from the world - wearing our earphones et al....and in this case, we remained so....including me.

I saw two security guards hunched over this dog, applying some cream from a first aid kit and closing its wounds with a rag.

Those are the higher men amongst us.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

3424 : Mother me

I have long missed you ruffling my hair. Let me rephrase that, I don't remember how that feels like. Did you ever do that?

When I was three, I fell into a well. They thought I had fell into it. I was searching for you. Last year, my chariot crashed into a tree. They thought I was being blinded by the sun. My secret, I was looking for you. A few days ago, I walked up to a stranger and sought her blessings. She looked like you.

Ma, I have searched for you in my friends, in my sisters. On unusual days, I have searched for you in the enemy camp.

My final sunset is near. I need to tell you this - if just a few occasions in my lifetime, had I known, that you were around - watching over, today I would not be so desolate.

I have had my father's amulet constantly blessing me. Ma, with you all I have had is a name. One day, I hope you realise what missing feels like. It's akin to being at home, but always being mistaken for a stranger. 

Enough said. Goodbye, I need to blow the conch. Its end of days.

- Karna

3422 : Reading List 2021 : #10 Life's Edge by Carl Zimmer

This is the book that got me started on Carl Zimmer and now I am hooked. Such a fabulous read. Will question your definition of what exactly is life. Absolutely go for it.

At 368 pages brings my 2021 read to 2068 pages.

If you read one book this year, it has to be this.

Images from Amazon

3423 : Black is the new light

As Gandhari, I have subsumed the darkness. The light never reaches me. My eyes are now used to the black. I see a million shades in the dark.

One day, if I do open my eyes, I still don't want to see you. I never ever want to know the real you.

3421 : Came in via twitter (Woman vs Goat)


Monday, June 14, 2021

3420 : Bird Zen

The other day I was driving into the old city, the part where I grew up. Eventually I got lost in one of the by-lanes. Not much, drove around a few minutes and then found a familiar road again. Of course, my excuse was - things had changed.

Contrast that to birds. They fly across continents, every single year. Humans change a lot of the world around them (the birds). And yet, like a pendulum, the birds find the median in the path. 

Birds can fly over seas. Birds can cover mountains. They know their journey. The path is indeed the way. 

3419 : Reading List 2021 : #9 Against the Loveless World by Susan Abulhawa

Susan Abulhawa is my find of 2021. Love her writing and the setting.

This book itself - mixed note. I liked the setting, the language, the intensity. Something was a bit off, not sure what.

Overall 9/10.

The other side of the Palestine conflict is what you shall read here.

Definitely read.

At 373 pages brings my 2021 read total to 1700 pages.

3418 : Reading List 2021 : #8 Rabbits with Horns and OIther Astounding Viruses by Carl Zimmer

Another short but outstanding read. 

At 22 pages brings my 2021 read to 1323.

Do read it, it will amply reward you.

3417 : Drop out

I was helping someone with their family's COVID issues. I had created a small WA group to help. As the person (patient) healed, the other members of the family signed out of the WA group, till only one remained.

I found that off. I am still part of that group. I felt I belong to that story (not in the credit's sense, but more from a human angle).

I found this very unusual. What do I make of this? Am I the one who is odd?

Sunday, June 13, 2021

3416 : Broken Poem

 He wrote a poem for her. As a tribute to what they once shared. It was a heartfelt word play. She thought the meter was broken.

Can she tell him that? Should she tell him that? Should she repair the poem? How does this play out?

3415 : What is a book?


“What is the use of a book without pictures or conversations?

-Alice in Wonderland”

3414 : Reading List 2021 : #7 Notes on Grief by Chimananda Ngozi Adichie

Such a fabulous read. Loved the book, totally and completely. I also wished I had such a strong connection with my parents.

Definite read. At 67 pages a small read, but will haunt you for a long time. Deals with the loss of her father.

A 10/10 read.

Brings my 2021 total reading to 1302 pages.

Images from Washington Post.

3413 : Reading List 2021 : #6 The Planet Of Virus(es) by Carl Zimmer

One of the best science books I have read in the recent years. Phew. Loved the way it pulls you in.

In summary, we are nothing but for viruses.

A great 10/10 read. 

At 128 pages brings my 2021 read to 1235 pages.

Images from Google/Amazon/Wikipedia.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

3412 : The smell of remains

Once we parked the car - I was walking her to the airport entrance. Frail, she required my support to take the steps. Slow, labored steps. 

I give her my hand, and she firmly takes my palm. Its takes us a good 15 minutes to reach the counter. Her hands never leave mine. Another 30 minutes later, is boarding time, her hands still don't leave me. 

She does not speak much. She is observing the world around her, just as if, she is a stranger in a new country. Finally, the attendant helps her on a chair and off she is ready to go.

I help her in. Touch her feet. Tell her sweet nothings. She says nothing, ruffles my hair and finally murmurs, "Kanna".

I am trudging back. Reach the car and sit in the seat. A deep sigh, this feels hard. I wont see her for a few months at least. I see some red stain on the palm of my hand. Possibly her kumkum or nail polish. 

I look at my fingers. Post a good stare, I smell them. I can smell her. 

3411 : Journey of a Joke

The more I see of Munnawar Faruqi, the more I like him. He is such an honest voice, such a fab story teller. There is so much one can learn, just about writing and storytelling.

Loved this YouTube video of his.

Have not watched it fully. So much to learn.

3410 : Petrichor

We can all smell the rain - the dance of the petrichor.

It reminds of my school days. Walking to school and back. Memories flood back. 

I let the daughter go out and get drenched. Though I have not done that in recent years.

Having to lug around a wallet and a phone (which can't get wet) is part of the reason.

3409 : Whats in a name?

I saw her waiting near the car. On the phone with someone. In the distant past, I have exchanged a few smiles and words with her. 

I can't recall her name. I can't exactly surmise the reason why I spoke to her then 

So, do I know her? Or don't? Help me decide.

Wednesday, June 09, 2021

3408 : Words

I have been working on my writing (doesn't show right :-)). And for me writing is like the rest of life, the more you know, the less you know. I now know that I write like shit. I am thinking for a few seconds before I jab the sentence down. Earlier it used to be a stream of consciousness. 

Some folks are just so naturally gifted in writing. I know it's not me.

3407 : The worst is here

"You bring out the worst out in me.", she yelled at me. 

I understood her to mean that the worst of of her insecurities, the frailties and the fears. I was feeding her demon, maybe. 

There used to be a time when I would also bring out the best in the same person. I realise that the journey from best is usually a downhill slippery slope. Did not realise that we might already be bottom scraping.

This is a poem without its meter.

3406 : I am not the man I used to be.....

I am definitely not made to be a husband or a father. Its a strain. I vacillate from too much investment to too little engagement. I swing like a pendulum. I really still make an attempt to be the best version of myself. Now if a honey bear decides to be like a gentleman, does not work, right?

I am not the man I used to be....

Monday, June 07, 2021

3405 : Hum Tumse Mile from Rocky

 I have been listening to Hum Tumse Mile from Rocky.....and I noticed something fun about it.

It is more RD Burman classic that has some great harmony. It has an unusual harmonic element - instead of chorus, or chords, it has the two lead singers singing in tandem - the same lyrics, at the same time. 

A very rare construct in Bollywood Music - but its so well executed.

3404 : I am on a break

I have not worked today. Not a bit. 

Just absorbing the world around me.

Totally introspective. Unsure what my life holds and how it unfolds.

3403 : The house I see - 2

In the same house, (from the previous post), there is a young daughter. Last year (as the lockdown was easing) on Diwali Day - the girl and her beau (I assume) were in the house alone. 

And they did an elaborate photo shoot. It was mesmerizing to watch.

And wholesome too.

When you are young, you are so full of hope, and so full of happiness. And I do want that back....really do.

(And and before you think I am voyeur, I often sit alone at my window sill and I can see them some 50 metres away. And they seem ok with the stare in, since they leave all their curtains pulled back all the time.)

3402 : The house I see

From where I live I can stare right into another house.

Its the house of a couple who have a daughter who is probably in her 20s.

The couple (parents) are big time into dancing. Bollywood dancing. Every evening, they are dancing with each other (and sometimes with a coach) steps and with coordination.

I have never been like this :-), but I sometimes on days, I do wish I was like this. 

3401 : We built this city

I have been driving to the hospital a few times in the past week. As I drive with the ill person, I  realsie that the roads of Bombay are a terror for anyone who has any sort of health issue - specially back or any other injury. 

The drive quite literally rattles you.

......and this is the city we built for ourselves.

Sunday, June 06, 2021

3400 : Mona Lisa was a Malyalee

I was talking to my daughter yday. We were talking about art.

And I had an epiphany. Mona Lisa was actually Lisa Mon :-)

3399 : Conundrum

Writing comes most easily to me in the morning (idea flow), but what I write at night (turns out to be the most poetic and there is an economy to it).

What I end up doing (when I can afford it), is writing in the morning, and re-edit it at night.

Saturday, June 05, 2021

3398 : Opening, Flowering, Drinking (Anoushka Shankar and Norah Jones)

Fall in love again, is the only way I can describe Norah Jones. She is a blessing on this earth.

Thats all I need to say.

3397 : Hum honge kamyab (We shall overcome)

If there is one thing you must listen to this weekend, it has to be Amjad Ali Khan and Joe Walsh playing Hum Honge Kamyab.

Its just outstanding. 

Goose pimple moment.

Listen to all three songs if time permits.

Friday, June 04, 2021

3396 : Fish bowl

Enough poets have said this, but I need to say it too. You and I are in the same fish bowl. We are running out of oxygen. I will let you float to the surface to seek more air..

Me, I will stay rooted. Right down there on the floor of the tank. Waiting to exhale - and with that for my soul, to eventually rise and escape.

3395 : Make up some ground

Some people make their own luck.

I make my own ground. The earth is composed speck by speck by my wheezing.

3394 : Cantaloupe Islands by Herbie Hancock


One of my favorite Jazz compositions.

3393 : Groupthink and insular

I was talking to a few of my work colleagues/friends (who might not be from my current workplace, but more folks I know due to work).

I see an unreal level of disconnect from what is the actual world around them. They sound like a happy rational bunch. They love parties. They love fun.

Which I don't grouse at all. And yet, exceptions aside, there is a complete divorce from science, critical thinking and individual think.

They are essentially victims of groupthink and are very insular.

Should they be worried? No. I know they are way happier and simpler than I am. I kind of envy them.

At the same time. Without divesting off group think, you shall never see your own truth. 

Choice is up to each of us.

Thursday, June 03, 2021

3392 : The artist

After she had drawn him (as in painted or sketched....whatever the right word), she smiled. He thought she smiling because she liked the output.

She was amused. By the mirth such a corpulent doodle would generate on her WA group.


3391 : The endgame

Life is a strange sort of game that we have constructed. We can spend days and months without meaningfully engaging with another human person or a system. 

I don't remember the last time I spoke poetry with someone? Or philosophy. 

We all are so busy judging each other - or dragging down our markers - winning the game of darts - and then of course filling our life with work. 

It all seems to pass by. The great journey, where most of us are ticketless passengers. 

3390 : There is monster under the bed

There is a monster under my bed. I have known it since I was a child. The monster sometimes likes to growl, sometimes like to mew.

As I write today, I realise that all I am doing is translating what she (the monster) has been growling.

3389 : Sellout Beatty

It depends on how you define art. Everyone seems to define it differently. I define it as a need to say something in a way which is unique and possibly insightful.

I have always maintained that all art is always a sellout. Including very personal art. Art is usually an expression of what one wants to be, then what one is. 

It's an aspiration.

I write this blog :-).

Wednesday, June 02, 2021

3388 : Writing

In the earlier parts of recent times, I struggled with the quality of my writing - both on this blog and otherwise. 

With time - I realise there is a better and better way to write. It's finally a craft.

How I wish I could encourage my daughter down this journey.

3387 : Remember

 I remember those things that have never happened too.

3386 : Munawar Faruqui

I have a view on if we arrested him correct, but that's for another day - and involves huge dollops of politics. watch this, and be mesmerized at how an average everyday person deals with life, and how his philosophy is simple, but his voice is so bleddy authentic.

I wish this was a podcast, would be an easier listen than watch. 

Highly recommended watch - even if you politically disagree with him. I like him for his philosophy. This is how resilient I want my kid to be. This is how resilient I want me to be.

3385 : Roz Roz Ankhon Tale

I honestly never realised this sing is sung by Amit Kumar. One of my favorites. Great lyrics by Gulzar.

I love this cover by him years later.

Tuesday, June 01, 2021

3384 : My house is geometric

 “I prove a theorem,” the poet Rita Dove wrote, “and the house expands.”

3383 : My left foot

During my walks - I sometimes see this person - he seems young - say around 20 - he seems to be challenged. One of his legs - I believe it's the left - cannot fully bend or pivot around his knee.Which means if he were walking, he might have to drag his left foot to keep pace with the right.

And then.....

I often see him running (or jogging). I kid you not. He literally hops like a rabbit or a kangaroo for a 50m sprint. And then rests for a few minutes.

Life is full of oddities. Some like this, make you brim with hope.

3382 : Window to the world

I see her sitting near the windowsill. She is old, grey and frail. She spends her day sitting by the sill. Her story is in the past (presumably).

She is still as she watches the rain pelt the street, and at other times as the sun burns the tar down. In either case, she is unfazed. She has seen far too much of grime and smelt in her life.

One day, when her story is being told - I hope this window headlines an entire chapter.