Thursday, September 29, 2022

4007 : Wake up and smell the coffee

I am drowning in my poison. Its the brown liquid called coffee.

Nothing warms the soul, like the first sip of the perfectly roasted cup of coffee, to start the day. Your heart says, if this is how the day starting, can it really be bad?


Saturday, September 24, 2022

4006 : Cats in the cradle

Picture this.

I am with a friend and kiddo at Starbucks @ India :-)

We are seated at this almost center of the room at a table for 4. There are tables and couch seating on all four sides of us. As we continue to chat....at some point a young pair (not sure they were a couple, but would soon know), both around 18-20 walk in. They take the couch on the other side, where I can see them as I also look and talk at my friend on the other side of my table. 

They both look like me/like us. Well dressed and reasonably well off. Girl is wearing a black hoodie and the guy is wearing white t-shirt with brown trousers. Both of them are wearing spectacles.

They rest their backpacks on the couch. Both slump on the couch. At some point in a few seconds the girl stands up. She removes her hoodie (the way guys would remove a t-shirt). She is wearing nothing but a sports bra underneath. This bra exposes a bit of her cleavage.

Once she does this (removal of the hoodie) she again slumps back on the couch. Meanwhile the boy who is on couch has not moved his eyes off his laptop.  He is staring at something and typing.

The girl opens her laptop (both of them are using macbooks) and she too begins to type. As she is typing she comfortably stretches and then rests her head on the guy's shoulder. The guy is leaning towards her. As in his upper body is at 15 degrees off the perpendicular, leaning towards the girl. 

In a few more minutes, the girl now adjusts her already resting head and finds a small crevice in the boy's neck/shoulder. So her head now rests neatly on his shoulder as they both continue to work. 

Both of them are working looking into the screen. Almost wordlessly, infact not even looking at each other. At some point (in a few more seconds), the guy now rests his head on her head (which is resting on his shoulder). So in some sense they both are resting on each other.

Neither of them are even involved in this actively. They are working. The girl's in "your face" sports bra and cleavage has not even moved a dime for the guy. They comfortably now continue to work and type away - each into their laptop.

At this point, I pry my gaze way. There is so much implicit intimacy here, right? Whether they are lovers or not - they just seem to trust each other so much, they are fine with each other's bodies, work and even nonchalance.

I would wish them well. Always. Stay blessed :-) strangers.

Just in case they ever do split up, each of them should hopefully use this as a baseline for future partners. Which means they would not he short changing themselves and hence being sub optimal.

I also  realized in that moment....This is what life is supposed to be. This is all life is supposed to be. This is poetry. This is love. This is trust. This is intimacy. This is most importantly shared and blissful joy.

And if we agree on all of this, then should we not wonder - how little it costs, how much it means and gives us all. And yet why don't we see more of this - in both public and private.

Love at this end becomes joy, and quickly becomes a rare blessing.

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

4005 : Losing

Losing all is personal again. The world creeps on you, and at the same time, life seeps out of you.

Fight the invader, or stop the leak - what will you choose? Which battle is the one to fight? Either one you choose, the other will win on you.

And that sums up my today. My present. 

Every single day I tell myself, fight, tomo is another morning. The sun will shine, and probably brighter than today. Not today. Today - I feel like resting, totally tired, washed away. Battle weary. 

Today the rain must fall.


Monday, September 12, 2022

4004 : My brain is singing again and again just this......

 Through these fields of destructions, baptisms of fire....

4003 : Reading List 2022 : #15: The Outsider by Stephen King

I finished the Outsider by Stephen King. Its a strange book. I loved the first half and hated the second half.

Read at your own peril.

Overall 7/10

At 576 pages brings my 2022 reading to 4596 pages.


 

4002 : Javier Marias

Go well, dear Sir - Javier Marias.

Only one person in the world can write a sentence like this and make others fall in love with love.

“I did not want to know but I have since come to know that one of the girls, when she wasn’t a girl anymore and hadn’t long been back from her honeymoon, went into the bathroom, stood in front of the mirror, unbuttoned her blouse, took off her bra and aimed her own father’s gun at her heart, her father at the time was in the dining room with other members of the family and three guests.”

4001 : Dylan's Blues

Today, the only thing that works is Bob Dylan's mega mixtape. The ironic bit, today even that is not taking off the edge.

I have listened to Dylan for 6 hrs already. There is a good chance, that I associate Dylan forever with broken room in Connecticut.

 

Sunday, September 11, 2022

4000 : What a day

How much can you lose in a day?

Sometimes the equivalent of a lifetime. 

My heart sometimes does have an irregular heartbeat. Today, it feels like - this was the day it was preparing for. Something is lost today.

"Chaabi jaise kho jaana....."

3999 : I need to stop travelling

I am so conflicted and contemplative. It drives me totally up the wall. 

Truly.


3998 : Double click

When you drink too much, you cannot double click on your mouse. Its a serious observation. Try it.

3997 : Aaye kuch abr

Kar rahan than gham-e-jahan ka hisaab,
Aaj tum yaad behisaab aaye.

What a day for a cloudburst.

Wednesday, September 07, 2022

3996 : Load up your guns, bring your friends

Its fun to lose, and to pretend....

So I lived on the edge yesterday. I am struggling to type this (yes fingers are quivering!!). I drank too much. 

I did have a moment of deep epiphany (yesterday and today). I am deeply inclined to veer on the edge. I will always prioritize the madness of today, over the consequences of tomorrow (that's my phrase!!....so the drink does make me write better....I think).

I could have kissed, made out with someone or jumped in the river, though I cant swim.... (no, that's about it....... I had no evil or murderous thoughts at all....but more hedonistic).

Does that make me strange? Yes. This is possibly my version of mindfulness. Of course, as I said, even in these worst (or best moments), I had utmost clarity around my Buddhist values - which is compassion, care and respect. 

Yes, I would have jumped into the river. Thats true too.

Today, if I had a choice, I would sit with a 20 pack and a liter of the bottle and skip work. Just alone with my solitude, the smoke and the peated oil.

What does this make me? You tell me.

PS: I would do this a million times over, just for the epiphany.


Tuesday, September 06, 2022

3995 : Another day from our figments

Do you remember that we once sat on the last seat of a crowded bus?

We laughed as if we were upto something surreptitious. We spoke of how your dream has been sliding down a canal, and how my errors are singing like a canary.

I recall thanking the vehicular jam on that rainy evening. The other memory I have is of you, nervously fiddling with that shard of thread from your jacket.

Its easy to be rattled on the last seats of a bus. We lost the battle.

3994 : Speaking to the wounds of yesterday in the tongue(s) of tomo's prisoners

Life is strange in the sense that it throws curveballs when you least expect it. 

It was a strange but very heartwarming chat with someone I hardly knew till about 10 days ago. We spoke about our deepest fears and deepest shames and yet.......we laughed like two condemned prisoners. Two criminals, caught in the act,  who have now a shared history sheet. 

I use prisoners in the literal sense too, in some cases we have been judged, and in others, the reckoning is coming our way.

We both then went out hunting for a smoke at 2am in the morning, in a city that pretty much sleeps by 9pm. We returned to finish a large pit of the peated brown fire. 

If this is how war feels like, I might just about survive it.

As you grow older, this is what falling in love might look like. (I am straight though :-) ) Two crazies confessing to their skirmishes. Safety in being equally scarred....and reaching a similar conclusion.....who gives a flying fuck?

If you hear of a prison break, you know where we hatched it.

Sunday, September 04, 2022

3993 : Yeh Faasle

Yeh Faasle by Anand Bhaskar Collective has some stunning lines.... (and what a stunning composition). Listen.

ख्वाबों मैं तेरह उड़ने लगा हू
कुछ ख्वाब खुद के बुनने लगा हू

यूँ दूर तुझसे रहते हुये अब
दिल की नसीहत सुनने लगा हू

खुशबू मैं तेरी खेलने लगा हू
बिन बात यूही हँसने लगा हू


राहो मैं तेरी आँखे बिछाये
दिल की हिदायत सुनने लगा हू

This is the song I want to sing.......

Great poetry does not need complexity, it instead requires a staggering amount of simplicity. Its taken me 40 effing years to learn that.




Monday, August 29, 2022

3992 : Reading List 2022 : #14 : India's Money Heist by Anirban Bhattacharya

A totally brilliant read. A complete page turner and based on a true story. Do read it, totally worth your time. 

At 349 pages brings the 2022 reading total to 4020 pages.



3991 : Reading list 2022 : #13 : An Actor's Actor by Hanif Zaveri

A quick breezy read on Sanjeev Kapoor, the actor. I kind of liked it, but strictly to be read as a lazy memoir.

6/10 overall.

At 248 pages brings my 2022 reading total to 3679 pages.



Sunday, August 28, 2022

3990 : Tears in Heaven

To those who recently passed on, I wish I could sing this for you. I really wish. Ahem!!

I sing like a pig, but I would still like to get one chance to sing for you. 

And that miss, neatly summarizes our life.




3989 : Layla

I am sure I have posted on this before....but listening to Eric Clapton playing Layla with JJ Cale is pure bliss.



3988 : Drive in happiness

I have a shitty memory overall.

Strangely, but I always seem to remember and associate songs with when I first heard them (or maybe when I totally fell in love with them!!)

Like Amy Winehouse will always transport me to Connecticut, New York. Always. 

And Vishal singing "duggie dugg dugg" will always transport me to such a happy point where I was driving across the country with my best friend. 

Drive in the happiness.




3987 : Shailendra + RD magic

Humne tumko dekha always transports me to a time, that I was so violently happy. 

I want to sing this for someone. But who?

I want to laugh aloud as I sing this.

3986 : Today I am truly thinking ...why do we fail?

I am looking back at my losses, and I feel so deflated. 

The chump has been chimping.

Hans Zimmer, you are my soundtrack today.


I am imploding.

3985 : The master and the puppet

Listening to Omar Khayyam....

Hum Khud hi tamasha, tamashaee bhi 

ahem!!


Saturday, August 13, 2022

3984 : Fading

Fading away is a very strange experience. Let me explain. - the dying (or the dead), they never really die. They continue to live not just in our memories, which is the most filmi expression - but they also continue to be around.

We examine them for their actions, long after they are gone.We continue to examine their beliefs, their books, their writing, their conversations with us. 

And conversely, the living sometimes fade away too. We try and forget some of our living compatriots, even as they sing and croon like a kingfisher. We kill their memories as a coping mechanism, sometimes as the voice of silence.

This strange dance of those juxtaposed with us, is quite intriguing, na?

Friday, August 12, 2022

3983 : The sweet nowhere

In the recent months, three people (I know) have had a close encounter with their ends. I have known all of them fairly intimately. Does their brush with "D" (death of course) bother me? Not really. I am minutely aware of their mortality and mine. What's kind of triggered in me, is a strange with obsessive examination of my own life. 

What I am seeing is offputting. Let me explain - I am observing the bizarre games we play with each other (I play with others), and I wonder, do I need to play these games at all? Something about the futility of our banal every day. Like do I need to be fret that, the plants were watered 30 mins later than usual, or should I suggest to someone that the red she is wearing is quite blinding, or should I fight for a cause on twitter (or even in real life)?

What does matter? In years of living, all I have realised that being happy with yourself, and with someone else too - in that moment is important. Almost to the point, that that might be the only thing that matters. I am true mercenary in that sense, I will always encourage happiness today over almost everything else. For myself and for folks I can influence. 

As a side fallout, I don't want to speak about operational issues with anyone anymore. In the past month, I have virtually not spoken much at all. I have been looking inwards (into what is a hollow tumbler), and grappling with the deep vacuum inside.

A bit like urban meditation, but in the J Krishnamurthi school (unlike the Vipaasna school...which I am not good at anyway). As an example, I met my brother after many years. Even with him, I could hardly speak 10 sentences in 10 days. We even drove together for a few hrs, and even in that, I could hardly bring myself to speak.

So - what does it take for us as solitary individuals or as friends to be happy, to be in the moment? My answers so far, include awareness. A drink (yes, I love my drink- be it coffee or the peated brown thingy). A smoke. A honest to goodness conversation, about the dead fish and the smiling skies.

And yet, why cant we do enough of that with our friends, with our children? If wonderful conversations are the only games that matter, why cannot we do more of that? If doing something creative is a real way to experience the moment of being alive - why do we diss it all the time, in our own lives and as a collective experience? 

In times like these, I have been also obsessively working, reading and sometimes stealing a drink. Is that a journey to escape? Why does it feel like I am more lost, and more entangled and yet totally disenfranchised with my world? Why does it feel lonely? Why does it feel like there is no cul-de-sac - its rather a road to nowhere?

The night is darkest before dawn, is the kind of BS, that I tell myself - was never true and never will be. There are parts of the universe where darkness is absolute. They have been waiting for the dawn forever. I will join that team for today.


Sunday, August 07, 2022

3982 : What ends but still never ends

Stories are a bit like death. They never seem to end. Death does nothing to a person (at least for two more generations). He/she can continue to live in versions in our heads. Way longer than they were alive.

Especially for our intimate folks, the river never stops flowing.

On a day like today, I do wonder what I have lost and yet, what I might never lose yet.


Thursday, August 04, 2022

3981 : Temple

Rushing between office calls. And found 10 mins to listen to Begum Akthar singing "Yeh Jo tum mein hum mein....."

And it reminds why soulful singing is way better than technical wizardry.

She oozes life into a song, that will melt a rock, possibly.

If I could build a temple, I would do so, at Begum's feet.



3980 : Nostalgia

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nostalgia_(1971_film)

I bumped into this via a book. From wiki, here is what it says.....(phew!! performance art is so magical when it wants to be)

The film is composed of black-and-white still photographs taken by Frampton during his early artistic explorations which are slowly burned on the element of a hot plate, while the soundtrack offers personal comments on the content of the images, read by fellow artist Michael Snow. Each comment/story is heard in succession before the related photograph appears onscreen, thus causing the viewer to actively engage with the 'past' and 'present' moments as presented within the film.[3]

Tuesday, August 02, 2022

3979 : The end of time

You keep saying, let us speak on that later. That we must park this for later.

Do you realize - one day, there will be no tomorrow.


3978 : In the coming days

Was he worried about an impending earthquake? Or the end of an era? Or a fire in the basement?

He stared at his whiskey through the crystal. A shimmer, a tinge of gold.

There was no siren in the air. There was no alarm ringing. As he sipped the peated stuff, he told himself none of this bothered him anyways.

And yet, the brooding sense of a catastrophe gave him immense anxiety. He could not put a finger on what he was worried about. 

Brooding. He began weeping.

Maybe he was losing his mind.

Friday, July 29, 2022

3977 : Question of amusement

Quora remains my single source of everyday mirth and amusement. Like Nero, who played the fiddle, in a similar way, I chose to amuse myself, as the world around me turns cinder.

One day, I hope to not have to visit Quora. That is my Sunrise.

3976 : The contradiction in your voice

There is immense silence around me. Weeks pass without me talking to anyone. And then sometimes you talk, and I know, this is not you. Not yet.

The real you is not here. The real conversations are gone.

The world is plunging into dark silence. One day Hans Zimmer will arise out of these depths.


3975 : Shirley Wheeler

Heroes they often come in strange shapes and strange places. Have been reading about Shirley Wheeler and I am so inspired. This is what stuff of everyday is made of.

Hope. Grit and just plain simple...Fight.

Read here https://www.nytimes.com/1971/12/04/archives/shes-fighting-conviction-for-aborting-her-child.html 

In the Context of Roe v Wade, Shirley becomes so important.

In the context of just respecting our fellow human beings as humans, she becomes so important.


I sometimes truly lament the world we have built for our fellow humans. This world will slide into hate, before it emerges back. That journey (hate) today feels like a black hole.


Saturday, July 23, 2022

3974 : Ginger

On a flight, next to two women doctors. I figured this through the 2 hr flight. They are talking about hospital politics, patient idiocy and so on....

Till at one point, one lady is telling the other, that Ginger (too much of it) will increase the heat in her "lower" body.

And the other doctor says "sach mein?"

And the first doctor proceeds to educate and pontificate. She also liberally quotes a popular guru who loves the Ducati.

Like me, if you sometime think we are doomed....I invite you to amuse yourself. Amusement may be the only way out of this debacle.


Saturday, July 16, 2022

3973 : Why do we fail? By Hans Zimmer

I have two Marshall Woburns paired up. Which means I can knock down the structure if I wanted to.

Whatever you have.....launch the system. Turn it up full steam. Only Max will do.

Then play this. Watch goose bumps rise up.

Always.


Hans Zimmer is such an under-rated genius.

3972 : Memory or Ghost

There is memory. There is you. 

There is no method to ascertain that both will match up to truth. I mean neither. 

I often wonder, is there a "you" without memory? Is there a memory, where I can contain all of you? I truly think about this as a whirl a glass of whiskey. Are you the real one? Or is your memory the real version (OG as the IG generation would say)?

I have real deep conversations with the memory of you. The whiskey whirls and the songs swirl.

3971 : Turtle

I often slide away from my life and withdraw into a corner. A corner where I dont want to talk, I dont want to check email, or WA or sort out operational shit.

I want books, I want music and some deep philosophical conversations. About art, about poetry, about cinema, about this universe.....the real conversations that matter. Possibly whiskey induced (Talisker - Amen!!)

I am in that state for some days now. Come over, lets dance like we never have done before. Talisker is on me :-). I will add smokes if it helps.

I am Turtle. Shell-locked.


3970 : Coincidences

I was reading a fascinating piece by Murakami (Haruki) on coincides. Unsure if that was fiction or non-fiction. Either way, it moved me very deeply.

Call it the Baader Meinhof, if you may.....but here goes.

So, I am alone three days ago. Working and deeply engrossed. When I am alone, I sometimes sing (loud and croon). So I am singing the first song that comes to my mind. Its an obscure, but lovely song called - "Outside" by George Michael.


Its a risque song, and I love it. I know most of the lyrics.

Let's go outside (let's go outside)

In the sunshine

I know you want to, but you can't say yes

Let's go outside (let's go outside)

In the meantime

Take me to the places that I love best

And as I finish my croon I realise, that the room is silent. The music had been shut off some hours ago (due to my previous zoom call).

I go to my shuffle list on spotify. Launch the list. This list has this song, along with 1167 others.

And I click on shuffle, and guess what. The song that plays is "Outside".

What are the odds? Murakami, you just freaked me out.



Thursday, July 14, 2022

3969 : Sparrow

The sparrow was there, on the edge of the ledge. Still for most parts with sudden movements. 

I kept looking at her for over half a minute. She was probably oblivious to me. At some point, her neck turned. Her eyes darted into me.

"Come fly away with me", she said.

3968 : Alanis Morissette singing Ironic (Live and Unplugged)

How do you take an iconic song (named Ironic) and make it legendary? 

By being Alanis and singing it unplugged. Totally in love with her voice, always was.

Her sailing over and under notes......what art and what beauty.



3967 : Tori Amos sings Nirvana

Listen to Tori Amos singing "Smells Like Teen Spirit" and melt away.

"Here we are, entertain us"......



3966 : King of Pain

 I love the song and the lyrics of King of Pain by Sting/Police.

And then today, Spotify told me that there is a Alanis Morrisette version.....and its sheer goose bumps.

The lyrics and her voice. Of course - it can never be Sting, but she doing "hey hey hey" and her layered note transition....is worth a million bucks.

Go listen.



3965 : Darkness

The lights are out. There is black around me. It seems normal and yet spaced out.

I remember the time you said, I dont allow you to talk. Today dear, put the spring back in your feet. Sing like a hummingbird. 

There is a story I remember reading when I was younger. A man in solitary confinement sings to himself every night. To both remain sane, as well as to retain the songs in his memory. As the arrow of time flows, the walls of the prison are seeped more and more in the notes. They have absorbed the range of two octaves and some rare notes from the third.

One day, in his 11th year of being alone, he feels the onset of a deep pain in his chest. The metallic taste in his mouth, tells him, that its possible a massive cardiac arrest. He remains still - exactly how a Buddhist monk would confront death. He tries to sing, but no sound emerges. He moves his lips just as he would if he were singing the chosen song. 

At sometime the walls around begin to move, and then blur. He sees the trapped notes emerging from the walls. A slow release from this prison of oneself. Rattle and hum.

While I was reading this story, I visualised the notes literally escaping. Today, I invite you to free the trapped bird within you. As Bukowski would say, "There is a bluebird in my heart...."

3964 : The dirge

I was recently told that I am very Zen.

And hell, of course, I am not.

I lament, not being able to smoke when I want to.

I lament, the slow steady passing away of mom.

I lament, the slow steady fading of love.

I lament, the hours that I did not spend in silence.

I lament, the nights that I did not spend writing.

I lament, the lack of a decent conversation in months.

I lament, not being able to sing.

I lament, that long before the world ends, I will be gone.

I lament, that I only lament but do nothing else.

I lament, that there is memory, but there is no you.

Today, even hell is freezing over. 

Thursday, July 07, 2022

3963 : The difficulty of focussing

I am intensely private and immersive person, and yet when the immediate world around me burns, even I find it intensely hard to even clock a few decent hours of work. The mind just struggles, almost dealing with fatigue.

What is fatigue in an urban privileged world? Its the point at which you realise the futility of our dreams. We are never going to be who we possibly want to be. And we are never going to be in a world we want to be. 

3962 : Snap and burn

Something in me snaps. Its hard to see her close to dying. Will she die? Never know. Will she live? Never know. Who knows what the night holds for each of us? Will we ever know?

The dirge I carry is not in her (upcoming) passing away, but rather the infinite lapse of what could have been. 

To me life has always been a set of possibilities. In that sense, I am a deep optimist, who will continue to see the possible upside in circumstances that are held in a sieve (yes, even in those hopeless games).

 By the same coin, I sometimes see nothing but the long end of the tunnel. Of what was lost. What is being lost.

The realization that we never wrote the story that we could have written.

Sunday, July 03, 2022

3961 : Memory of no memory

I remember walking with you the other evening. In the middle of a no man's zone. You looked radiant and happy. (Not necessarily beautiful...."beauty" I think is an over-rated subjective nonsense).

I did want to click a photo of us. To capture this day for posterity. Something in me held back. Instead I soaked the day and the moment in.

I contain you and that day in me. The photo has not been captured. Neither has your radiance.

The story is not a stilllife. What did we miss?

3960 : Silence and a drink

There are many times on many nights, all I crave for is total silence (music is fine....especially if it is of my choice) and a nice stiff drink. (a peated whiskey or a cutty sark would be perfect).

And then I look at the world around me, and know that's going to be so hard. Almost impossible. Never.

I want to write, I want to dwell and I want to hum. In my silence.


3959 : Murakami

I find Murakami strangely soothing. The bizarreness of his stories, the total relatability of characters, who we know might not be real.

I must admit, I find the characters real. Every single time I am burdened by life, I veer towards Murakami.

As I have grown older, if there is someone I aspire to be, or write like - it has to be Murakami.



Wednesday, June 29, 2022

3958 : Strip tease

In any Indian hospital, the idea is to never treat you as an individual. You are a part of a lumpen, who are all considered inconsequential by association.

What should we expect from a world and a society that is rent seeking and bereft of mutual respect?

Every patient is dehumanized, treated like a factory object on a conveyor belt.

Everytime I am in a hospital, I am reminded of factory farming.

3957 : Loneliness

It just occurred to me how lonely it might be to be alone and locked into an ICU for a few days. Especially in an Indian scenario, where we are very dehumanized to a point of being shamed.

As I look at her, I wonder - if you are old, shriveled and fighting a war in your body, is solitary confinement the best we can do as a society?

Sunday, June 26, 2022

3956 : Encounter with him

I met him at the lobby. His name was Amitabh too. 

We both smiled, almost as if we had met our doppelgangers.

He spoke in a tongue that seemed to ask questions, without a question mark.

For apparent reasons it immediately reminded me of Murakami's 1Q84.

Today, I have already forgotten how he looked.

3955 : Sleepless in the city

Am I struggling with my sleep?

Or am I dreaming of sleeping well?

Or am I aching for a sleep that does not have a dream?

Or am I not able to not dream?

3954 : The art of saying nothing

I am sometimes accused of saying nothing, because I do go silent at times. 

And yet... I feel better than speaking a lot without meaning anything. Truly, thats not a judgement.

So many of our conversations are just meaningless trite, an almost automatic way to fill up time.


3953 : Yaar

Yaar nu milegi aaj laash yaar di.....

....and then poems were written.

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

3952 : The song that wheezes

The poetry from my song dances on my tongue. My heart twirls with the note. 

The singer continues to lull you with progressive notes, till at one point - he smiles (he actually smiles while singing) and then slips in a low note....when least expecting it.

The low cadence hits - as if he is sharing an intimate secret - in a most disarming way.

At one point he says, "This blessing is also from the same seer"....and I know what he is singing about.

You.

Monday, June 20, 2022

3951 : Gitanjali

I was in 8th grade. Terrible at studies. I was always terrible at school - its only in college that I possibly shone through. Call me a late bloomer, if you will, though, that is being immensely kind.

This post is not about that.

So my brother and mom convince me to somehow start to attend a large "tuition" class. So picture this. I am least interested in this nonsense.

So in the first few days, I am switched off and distracted too. And then, Gitanjali arrives to teach me physics. And I was always a physics champ. Even today, I know some chops there.

She is a first year B Sc Student, but she also teaches on the side. And by the Lord, she teaches fab. One of the finest teachers I have known in my life.

So I answer some questions, and very soon I am answering all questions. I soon figure our families know each other. (that's an aside). One day in the class - she asks me how I know so much physics....and I tell her I read Soviet published books. Yes, that's true :-)

She asks me some advanced questions around thermodynamics and so on....and I happy chomp away at it. I can see she is floored.

Over months, she encourages me to be better and better. I love her class. Eventually she stops coming to teach (unsure of the reason), and I lose interest in tuitions and drop off.

Something reminded me of her yday. After almost 3 decades. I have almost never thought of her in all these times. 

She might be the closest I got, to having my first crush. On a serious note, I have immense heartfelt gratitude for her contribution in my life.

That's the post.

3950 : Us vs I

As I grow older, I realize that I am not able to discern the boundaries of what's others and what's me. That causes immense heartburn....I mean, eventually. 

I have to remind myself 10 times a day - put "my" head down and focus on look inwards. At least that's a real way to understand my own inner boundaries.

The duality is real, Advaita be damned in that sense.

Thursday, June 09, 2022

3949 : Whats in me?

I feel I have Bombay in me. I sometimes see my mother in me. I hear the Beatles speak in my tongue. I feel I contain multitudes. I sing in three languages.

My dad says I contain the universe. My son says I contain stories. My heart contains hope.

And yet, I feel immensely lonely? Whats missing?

You, maybe.

3948 : Guru in wilderness

I see mid aged and young women (and yes, it seems to be women)....on flights, in my apartment complex, in transport systems....and they are all watching Sadhguru or some pravachan, or equivalent on youtube.....and something in me laments. 

We lose this beautiful world and life one inch at a time. One soul at a time we take 3 steps back...and then forget to take any steps forward.

There is very little a Guru can teach you, if you cannot open your eyes and see the world around me.


Wednesday, June 08, 2022

3947 : Leaving the door open

Sometimes if you leave a door open, then someone will open it. They might enter the dark space called you. Its hard to let people in, but the first step is to leave the door open.

Better still, if this is the outcome you want, break down the door. Let empty spaces replace the erstwhile door.

This process is hard. Its almost impossible. With or without the awareness, both ways its equally hard.

And yet it behooves I must do it. Today and not later.

3946 : Eric Clapton

I have been so tempted to cancel Clapton in recent years....and yet he is a genius. Listening to him playing "Layla" live with JJ Cale (available on Spotify) is such a raucous joy.



3945 : Diction

Listening to Lata Didi, Nandini Srikar....is a joy, but it also teaches you that diction is everything in songs. Diction paired with perfect notes is so rare, its almost an ear sore. As in, your head notices it, just because perfection is so rare.


Tuesday, June 07, 2022

3944 : 12 inch version

 I come from a generation where 12 inch version meant something groovy, and not necessarily tool size :-).

And Shep Pettibone meant someone to look fwd to.

Stevie Wonder singing "Part Time Lover" in a 12 inch version (in case you are too lazy to google, it means a 12inch LP...so the song is a longer single...than regular single)....is pure gold.

If I am ever wooing someone, this will be the song, I will sing in my gruff desi messy voice.

"We are undercover, passion on the run, chasing love, up against the sun....knowing its so wrong, and yet feeling so right."



3943 : Men will be boys

I am on a flight. Surrounding me is about 6 men, who are all in their 60s possibly. And they are boisterous. Seem like a bunch of childhood friends on a trip together.

They are eyeing the female staff, cracking teenage jokes. And just laughing their asses off.

And moral puking judgements aside, this is what life might actually mean. Be with friends, laugh and fart.....and for a few moments, forget the killjoys that you just left behind.

Monday, June 06, 2022

3942 : Mixtape

I find immense solace in my books and music. Give me spotify and kindle, and I might pull an entire quarter without needed to see another human.

And my spotify mixtape would include Norah Jones, Nandini Srikar and Amy Winehouse.....three women who I unabashedly love. 

And then I can find sentences like "New York City, such a beautiful disease", "My destructive side...has grown a mile wide", "baavan tarah se.....jee ko rhijaun...."

"and I question myself again...."

The creator created a mess, completely losing the plot. And yet she had distinct flourishes. And that friends, should be our mixtape.


3941 : Acid Run

I am starting to write after a long time. Sometimes our minds stop. Mine did.

Minds don't stop in isolation. Minds stop when our hearts stop. Our hearts stop, when our breath stops.

Hibernate. Closet off. One wall at a time, our worlds collapse.

A long hiatus is where I have been in. It feels winter.

And the thaw does not seem to be close at hand at all.

One day, I too shall pray for the Black Hole Sun.

Sunday, June 05, 2022

3940 : The book

I have over 300 pages of material written down, all spewed around. Some of it anachronistic, some of it feeble, some of it sublime....and yet, most importantly, an idea that is incomplete.

Like us, it's trying to go somewhere, but going nowhere. 

An ostrich. A bird trying to find its wings. Burdened by its own weight and proclivities. 

Saturday, June 04, 2022

3939 : Secrets

I wanted to meet her and tell her my truth. I drove home. She led me to the kitchen and said "Sit kanna, tea coming up soon."

Staring at the boiling water, she continued talking in her usual chirpy and yet reassuring voice.

"All good at work?"

"Yes, as always good."

She laughed and said, "How can there be nothing that worries you? Are you really that Zen?"

I mimicked her tone and smiled with a small sound too. She continued "So all good ha?"

I say with a deep pause, "Should I worry about cigarette stub smoke, or the fire in the barn?"

With wisdom, she smiled, still focussed on the tea and said - "Neither. Or both. Depends on what bothers you. Does anything bother you?"

"Hmmm....I notice them both, but with a dispassionate eye - as if I am in a movie hall."

She turned off the flame, turned around and looked at me and said with infinite compassion, "Kanna, this too shall pass."

I looked at her eyes, directly. Long pregnant pause from both of us. She is and always has been excellent at reading conflict in others.

A good minute later, this eye-match-eye going on, and then she finally says "And? Still want the tea?"

I smile sheepishly. She walks to the side the kitchen counter and picks up the "fire extinguisher" and hands it over. "Has never been user in years. Might never work. Maybe this is what you need from me."

Guffaws and turns on the tea making again. Her back to me.

After what seems like minutes - I blurt - "Both the cigarette and the barn fire - I am the one who lit them." 


3938 : One day

Do I have an alibi?

No. 

Guilty by induction?

Maybe.

Will we ever know the truth?

Never.

Did you buy my story?

Water runs dry.

3937 : Malang from Coke Studio 11 by Sahir Ali Bagga and Aima Baig

There is a new love in town. 

I have been listening to this so often.


The guitar riff is exactly the same as Hawa Hawa - Hassan Jehangir.

But, what a song. The singers and the studio is so much fun.

The energy is so infectious.


And note....

One of those rare songs, where the male goes just as high as the female (in terms of notes). Infact in the middle parts he is higher. So refreshing.

And while you are at it, listen to the master himself.....



3936 : Writing

Writing is a strange preoccupation. 

I dont write on paper, I write in electronic shards ("in" not "on").

There is this deep sense that none of the writing would ever matter. None of me would ever matter. One day I will be gone, and with me goes everything about me. That sword of ephermereality makes this world a very bizarre experience.

Its like walking into the male toilet of a hotel. Use the urinal, pee, wash your hands, and you are out. Neither do you remember the urinal, not the toilet has any memory of you. You crept in, and faded out.

There is no more - no afterlives, no meaning, no purpose, and absolutely no larger ecosystem.

How is this connected to writing? Well, I do wonder, then why do I write at all.

3935 : I knew you were waiting for me - George Michael + Aretha Franklin

I heard an old classic after some years and I am hooked just like my old days. This one is Aretha Franklin and George Michael singing "I knew you were waiting for me".

What a rocker of a number. 

Miss Franklin's vocal range - phew!!



Friday, June 03, 2022

3934 : Why do you drink?

As we continued sipping our wine, I noticed, that she was having very large gulps. I observed for a good few minutes. She was focussed and dunked on the maroon drink (I am bad with color).

Drinking with a purpose, which is not usual for someone who sips for the joy of it. Contrasting it with myself, I like my coffee and wine to be savored - thats probably the only food I consume mindfully.

After a silence that seemed both long and awkward, I built a laugh and asked "Like the Eagles song, drinking to remember or to forget? Before you correct me, I know that's about dancing."

"So to remember, or to forget?"

Eyes seething with anger, as if I had slapped her or equivalent, she gave me a glare. Had another large gulp, and then rudely muttered, "To drown."

3933 : Dead parrot

I remember reading in Arundhati's book, "Where do the birds goto die?" and being intrigued by it. Its a Zen Koan kind of question. I am in my 40s, and I had never wondered about this question earlier.

Years later, I saw dead, now gingerly laid on the floor. Shrouded in white with a green saree symbolically placed over her. It was her favorite saree. Somehow, comically, her slightly long nose (alongwith the green saree) reminded so much of a parrot. Yes, you are right, the human mind does conjure strange phantoms in the most unlikely of places.

I also remember thinking in that moment - "Now I know where one parrot went when she died."

Thursday, June 02, 2022

3932 : Tomorrow

We often tell ourselves that tomorrow we shall be a better version of ourselves. I so often do this. 

I will also tell someone I will call you tomorrow. Yet I know...Tomorrow, you might not be around. Neither might I.

The raging fires of today will be embers tomorrow. In that faint shimmer you might find the ashes of my desire. My remains.

Tomorrow. Is not today. Tomorrow. Is not yet here. Tomorrow. Might sometimes be away. Forever.

3931 : Do our stories matter?

For almost ever, I have debated if our stories matter after us. After our death I mean. I tend to be strongly in the camp - they never do, they never will.

And then today, this happens........For today, every single story matters. Always. For today at least...this is settled.






3930 : The hollow inside

This bird of a human. Always completely sure of every game in town. Ready to dispel advice on the malice of "our ego". Like the cheap bootleg of a Godman.

Eyes ever so slightly shifting from left to the right. A possible sign of the total vacuum inside.

Glazed eyes. Chumped lips as the mouth mutters the lousy nothings.

Did I stare at the abyss today? No, I met him.

Wednesday, June 01, 2022

3929 : Cartographer lost

She was walking. Towards what she felt was a destination. 
Here we are, and she realizes that this road has dead ended into a cul-de-sac, and she is here, but nowhere. 

There are some flowers growing near her. Feels like home, but without an address.

3928 : The straw

We rode the camel. Across the desert. To where? From this dry to the promised oasis, of course. 

Along the way, we loaded ourselves with bags. Not to mention the baggage we perenially carry. We accumulated sins, drowned in the river of the spirit, danced with the light. You carried the cross, "The Lord will watch over us."

Today, you added "her" into the mix. 

The camel's knee broke. The devil had found the straw.

3927 : Flight path

When we talk, I often look at us with distant wonder - our talks should be of the earth, but they often appear completely hollowed out.

I see our souls akin to a tin cage. "Us" is a trapped bird. One which has been tied down for years. Freedom, eventually, on a day like today, might mean nothing. The wings no longer have any muscle.

There is an emaciated poem in the air. The meter is off, the lyrical check is loaf. 

Why would we succumb to this drivel? 

In the book I am reading, I read a sublime passage. Like always, as I read it, it occurred to me, that each of us carries a falcon within our hearts. The falcon, we dry off one flight at a time.....to the point that eventually what remains, is the coarse arid sand. 

Sand. Not the earth I would have wanted.

This is our world. We make it by inches. We break it by light years.

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

3926 : Chilli Funk

The other day, I was sitting with you, both of us waiting for our dinner. The server got us a plate of salad, essentially just onions. You gave me your smirk, and sheepishly said "Can you request him to include some cucumber and tomatoes too?"

I politely looked at the server and mumbled something. In turn, he understood the request and in a few minutes got a large plate including chillies.

As we were chomping on the veggies, you said, "Do you mind eating one chilli for me?"

I could not contain my incredulity. "Why?"

"For me. Please. Pretty Please.", you said with mischief dancing on your forehead.

Always game for rando craziness, I picked the largest chilli on the plate (the largest is always the mildest)....and chewed it slowly. Only by the last bite, did my poor tongue scream back at me "Fuck you, imbecile idiot. What are you trying to do?"

To silence my tongue, and its french, I drank a large glass of water.

After a few minutes, as we still waited for the food, you said, "One more please?. Come on goldy."

Who the fuck is "goldy" now?

I looked around totally perplexed. And loudly said "Fuck off".

"One more, and my offering to this new place, would be complete." you smiled awkwardly and said. "Really, this is so near Kailash. I wanted to do this for Shivji."

"Jerk - shouldn't you eat, its your offering?"

You continued smiling and imploring "please" with your looks and a large pout, that almost embarassed the shit out of me.

With great trepidation, I chose another large one. In preparation, requested the server for a piece of jaggery. Then I proceeded to eat the green poison....this time chewing as little as possible.

As I finished, gulped the water and hungrily sucked on the jaggery....you purposefully stood up, majestically walked around the table. Am sure everyone noticed. In full view, you pecked me and loudly announced, "you are such an absolute dear".

And my ears heard "deer".

Boom boom. In that moment, I knew the real you. 

Sita.

3925 : Sound

There is no sound.
Absolutely nothing.

Hear your smirk.
Witness my loss.

Feel the length of noise.
Miss the bauble of the beat.

Anticipate that turn and whack.
Internalise that boom.

Without you.
There is a deafening silence.

Monday, May 30, 2022

3924 : The moon

The other day, you lovingly said, I am your moon. 
Poets adore the moon. But....

Does it occur to you, that the moon has craters that people mistake for a rabbit.
Does it occur to you, that the moon has an invisible side, that people mistake for the dark side.
Does it occur to you, that the moon can sometimes cause the total eclipse of the light in your life. 

The more you see of me, you might realise that the moon is nothing but a fancy piece of rock.

3923 : The story shifts

Ten years ago, I genuinely believed I had a future.
Today, I am convinced I have a past.

Saturday, May 28, 2022

3922 : One step

Remember at the temple 
You and I walked in step

Sometimes you ahead
Sometimes my feet locked up

You said, I should pray to the Lord for "us"
Did I tell you - I am an atheist

And yet, I did pray
To a Lord, who does not exist

A wind blew against us
Your hair splayed like fire

At one point
You instinctively held my hand

You probably wanted some support
Or you thought I was going to fly away

I laughed and said "One step away"
"From total desire" 

Today, the roads are same
I have somehow reached a cul de sac

I definitely missed a step somewhere
Can we backtrack?

The Lord smiles at me
"Still an atheist?"

You are long gone
Today as the wind blew, I feel your hair again.

3921 : Dugg Duggi Dugg from Jugni

 For me this song is the find of the year, of the past 2-3 years.

The poetry (by Shellee), singing by Vishal, music by Clinton Cerejo.....this has to be hands down the most meaningful composition I have heard it in recent years.

I could have bet a large sum, that this was Gulzar - and bloody hell, I could not have been more wrong.

I am sure, I will love this song, till my deathbed.

Do listen, its the best thing you would do yourself. On loop. Forever.



3920 : Lost

In recent months, I have often felt rudderless - with a huge wave of hopelessness in me. The last time I struggled like this was over 22 years ago, and it did not end well then.

A foreboding. A forebrooding.

These are times I should not drive. (No, not that I am unsafe), but its just that these drives amplify the zen conflicts in my head.

Loss. Losing. Lost.

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

3919 : Driving

Driving clears up the mind. I have been driving for the past 4 days, 2 more days to go. Intense driving.

Point is...Nothing. 

Have had too much time to think and mentally detox.

Everything I hold precious is disintegrating around me, and that hurts me immensely. Seeing the world around me slowly sliver away, and with it, my own possibilities.....truly and utterly deflates me.

Its like seeing death at close quarters and recognizing that life is all about one thing. Dying. That is indeed the only certainty.

Similarly - moving adrift seems so akin to our intrinsic relationships.

Sounds like a rant, isn't it? It is.

3918 : Old age

I have spent the past week with people older than me. 

Our elders teach us the world, one inch at a time. Not by expounding but by living. 

Watching your elders at close quarters is at most times a blessing.

 

Sunday, May 22, 2022

3917 : 52

A pack of cards.

A year of being moonless.

52 weeks.

52 players.

You were the Ace of Hearts.

I held onto my spade.

Today, I feel like the Joker.



Monday, May 09, 2022

3916 : Reading list 2022 : #12 Bluebeard by Kurt Vonnegut

Loved this little gem of a book. A strange fictional memoir. 

And yet, I loved this book so much. Read it for the strange melancholy that transcends this book and Vonnegut's writings. The strange loss of knowing that nothing might actually eventually matter. 

At 338 pages brings my 2022 total to 3431 pages.

Do read this book and be charmed in writing lessons. How to write so well, that it almost looks effortless.



Tuesday, May 03, 2022

3915 : Reading List 2022 : #11 Breakfast of champions by Kurt Vonnegut

Reading Kurt Vonnegut after almost a decade and loving it totally again.

Seeing it in a different light, esp the exaggerated tongue in cheek. The light hearted and yet apt digs at American (and our) suburban life. And the illustrations are lovely.

At 303 pages brings my 2022 total to 3093 pages.

A most definite read.



Saturday, April 30, 2022

3914 : Reading list 2022 : #10 The Silent Parade by Keigo Higashino

What not to like in a Japanese thriller. Builds up neatly and continues till the end. Highly recommende for someone who likes this genre.

Very good read. Still possibly 8/10 (I like my literary books more!!), but dont mind reading these books at all.

At 435 pages brings my 2022 total to 2790 pages.





Friday, April 29, 2022

3913 : Reading List 2022 : #9 Earthquake Bird by Susanna Jones

If you have not seen the movie, you must. Its a visual treat. To someone who loves Japan, its a love story.

If you have not read the book, you must, its delightful writing.

Loved the writing and the book. 

At 276 pages brings my 2022 total to 2355 pages.












Thursday, April 28, 2022

3912 : Reading List 2022 : #8 This is pleasure by Mary Gaitskill

And I might just be recommending the book of the year for me.

This little book, about #MeToo, made me think, made me think and made me think.

It was one of the books, I never wanted to end. Stunning writing. As I always say for books like this 18/10. Do read it. Dont miss it. Send me a note, and I shall gift you this.

At 97 pages brings my 2022 total to 2079 pages.

Buy, treasure and re-read this book.

Images from the Guardian




















Wednesday, April 27, 2022

3911 : Reading List 2022 : #7 Run and Hide by Pankaj Mishra

A strange melancholy of a book. Conjures images of a world that is never still, always moving. A world where we never fully know what we want, and never have what we need, and that little thing which means everything to us - is always just a few inches from our grasp.

Loved the writing, the imagery and the hidden philosophical gems interspersed in the book. A book that made me search my soul, and come up with its vacious emptiness.

Absolutely do read it.

At 338 pages brings my 2022 total to 1982 pages.






Tuesday, April 26, 2022

3910 : Reading List 2022 : #6 Tokyo Decadence by Ryu Murakami

Finished this little gem of a book, very unusual stories about love. Some of them stunningly graphic and makes you think. 

At least I did wonder what kind of person the author must be - to write with such grittiness.

On my scale, possibly 9/10. The folks who dont like too much raw, might dislike a book like this.

Do read.



At 280 pages brings my 2022 reading total to 1644 pages.

Monday, April 25, 2022

3909 : When we danced

I have been away. A long silence. A point where our mind is talking, but our voices are silent.

There is chatter, and then there is emptiness.

One day there shall be no more the need for the quiet.

Monday, February 21, 2022

3908 : Stories - 2

Read the previous post.

And that explains, why I seem to love conversations on a podcast. They represent what I miss quite a bit in my life. Stories, life experiences, the sharing of these tales.

Instead I am often surrounded by uni-dimensional folks (and I am guessing I am that too).

With stories, we can connect. With conversations, we can bridge. With a shared context, we can overcome.

3907 : Stories

In the past few years, I have noticed that the world around me is slightly amiss. My own ecosystem, I mean.

Let me explain - what "amiss" means. It means bereft of color and character. I have struggled with it, but never come to correctly point out what it was. What was it, that represented "color and character" and hence was amiss.

So kept hunting for the missing sauce. And then one day, a few months ago - I was reading some anecdote on twitter, and it occurred to me. The epiphany.

The world around me, my ecosystem is bereft of stories. Everyone is on a treadmill (so am I), everyone is going somewhere (so am I), everyone has no time to stare or pause (me too).....and yet no one has stories. No one has memories.

Our memories are a blur, our photos as a cess pool. Our digital apps are cringe. And the real stories are missing. 

A world without stories being shared or spoken is such a quaint place. Its without character and color. Its what is amiss.

Saturday, February 19, 2022

3906 : The silence of the days

As you see the world around closing in, its interesting to take a pause. And dream on.

Dream on, about what?

About the stories that we constantly tell each other, and also about the stories that we never tell each other.



Saturday, February 12, 2022

3904 : Reading List 2022 : #5 Rumors of a Spring by Farah Bashir

Loved this little gem of a book, written like a part memoir, part tale.

Shows how broken Kashmir is, and how traumatic is to those caught in the war.


At 216 pages brings my 2022 reading total to 1374.


3903 : Reading List 2022 : #4 A desolation called peace by Ather Zia and many other voices

A book about writers from Kashmir writing in their version of the land and its current state.

Despodent, desolate and yet about hope. For a future, where we all live together to share this planet.

Read. Think. Reflect.

At 277 pages brings my 2022 total to 1162 pages.



3902 : Modern isolation

In the modern world, the sense of isolation, the sense of being nowhere, and yet everywhere - is almost complete. 

One day, I will return to the real world. Reminds me Queensryche singing, "Real World"....one of my favorite songs....from the movie Last Action Hero.



3901 : Reading List 2022 #3 : I have not seen Mandu by Swadesh Deepak and Jerry Pinto

This book is a memoir written by a person who fought his personal demons. And he describes the demons as he sees them. Everyday in the closet, the shape shifts.

Need I say more?

I have not read a book like this. Deeply disturbing and yet so enriching. I came out more aware of myself, of the world around me.

I felt as if I have known Swadesh Deepak forever. What would I not give to know him?

A book that transforms your insides.

Go for it. At 360 pages brings my 2022 to 885 pages.

Image from Hindustantimes.com





3900 : The state of my nation

As we finish the first months of 2022, I realise, that my life has been a blur. I feel I am filling time. Its a sense of deep loneliness, a deep sense of knowing that this is not my race is.

We choose a world, we paint a canvas. And yet at times, we dont like what we have painted. Or what we are painting?

Should I discard the canvas, and start all over again?

Silence is my new best friend.

Wednesday, February 09, 2022

3899 : Zinda unplugged by Amit Trivedi

I can listen all day long to Amit Trivedi unplugged singing "Zinda" from Lootera.




Thursday, January 27, 2022

3898 : We will never know

 So daughter asks me, "When did Chris Cornell die?"

"2018 or 2017?"

"How did he die?"

"Of depression."

"What was he depressed with?"

"I dont know."

"Can we find out?"

"No, we will never be able to find out. His secrets are gone with him."


3897 : Jaag Musafir by Fareed Ayaz

If you have not heard this - I suggest you hear this on loop. As trippy and trancy as it can get.

Play this to the end of time, till the end of the world. 

And yes, please "wake up."

What a song!!




Wednesday, January 19, 2022

3896 : I usually love listening to music, except for some exceptions

And #1 on this list is "Where the Streets have no name" original video.

What a feel it has.

Especially at some point, when the first strumm hits the road. Always mesmerized.

Stays in my head rent free.


Watch it and feel goose pimples.

The guitar riff!! Phew!!


3896 : Thangamey by Anirudh Ravichander

This song has such a lovely alternative rock feel to it. If you just heard the start, this could be easily an alt rock number.


This musician is a genius. Totally overshadows ARR.

3895 : Listening to Chris Cornell singing Nothing Compares 2 U

Is the closest you can get to happiness in any given lifetime.

Such an experience always reminds me of what greatness each of us possibly holds in our hearts.

What a song.



Monday, January 10, 2022

3894 : Reading List 2022 : #2 : Wanting by Luke Burgis

This book is easily one of my best reads in recent times. 

Totally recommedned. It explains what are our foundational motivations are, and why most of them are totally wrong.

Changes the way you look at your own life.

I am already starting my second read of the book.

At 290 pages brings my 2022 reading total to 425 pages.

Image from Lavin Agency




3893 : Reading list 2022 : #1 : What we talk about when we talk about love by Raymond Carver

Just finished this highly recommended book (as in its an overall popular book) by Raymond Carver - What we talk about when we talk about love.

In my honest sense, I liked the writing - its crisp and edited. (Supposedly his editor was the magic !!)

What I struggled with is - at least some of the stories I did not fully grasp. They are abstract. More like poems, but also more like an inside joke from the author.

Maybe, it's just me - I am dense.

Unlike other books, where the best stories are early in the book - in this case, its towards the end of the book.

Overall I would rate this 8/10. I know Carver fans will hate me.

I loved the title story - that alone makes it worth the read.

At 135 pages, this is my first book for the year.



Saturday, January 08, 2022

3892 : Spotify can suggest gems

It just suggested to me the classic "Girl from Ipanema" as sung by Amy Winehouse. Was not aware of such a version.

My fav is the Stan Getz original version, but this version is sweet too.




3891 : What is it about men, from North Sea Festival by Amy Winehouse

If there is one song that never fails to move me, its "What's it about men?" By Amy Winehouse, from North Sea Festival. 

Only available on Youtube and Spotify.


Just looking at her sing is so hypnotic. Totally love her and her voice.

And the lyrics. Phew!!

My favorite line is "My destructive side has grown a mile wide"


Friday, January 07, 2022

3890 : Ali D'Oro by John Lee Hooker

 If there is only one song you must listen to today it has to be

Ali D'Oro by John Lee Hooker.



3889 : Kaushiki Chakraborty

There is a new love in town. Its unabashedly Kaushiki Chakraborty.

I have been playing her on repeat.


Wednesday, January 05, 2022

3888 : Contemplative vs reactive thinking

While it sounds like a simple concept. Its really not...

Hear this at 

https://mwrh.simplecast.com/episodes/mwrh-65-meditative-vs-calculative-thinking 

Ideally subscribe using your fav podcast player. Mine is Spotify.

And yes keep inputs coming.

3887 : Why philosophy

I was talking to a friend of mine and she was saying that philosophy possibly is a first world problem and we don't need it or should not pander much to it.

I have been thinking about this chat.

Like I would like to have a chat with someone for over 4 hrs on what "love" could possibly mean? Or what "penitence" means? 

I then wonder am I biased, because I like these rabbit holes? And then I believe, that even 1000 years ago, if I was born - I would be similar - thinking along these same lines.

In summary, I love philosophy and if anyone ever has the time and enthu, ping me. Always around for a chat.

Sunday, January 02, 2022

3886 : Unborn

My city is always full of dust. It feels like a city perpetually being built. The more I have meditated on this, my awareness of this has changed. More and more, I feel as if, this dust is about the houses that never got built.

Those specks of cement and sand, that never made it to the structure.

The ones who missed the mark, and yet, they are always around, witnesses to their own failures, and telling their stories for posteriety.

3885 : Freedom

There is something unique about you just letting your hair loose. It represents braids that are no longer confing, it represents structures that are not confirming and it also variously represents the knowing and the confusing.

Today, I saw you again, and I realised that it also possibly represents letting go. Of not being someone else, but being you. This is what freedom possibly looks like.

Saturday, January 01, 2022

3884 : Poisons

God made the poisons to slow down our lives. Coffee, tea, smokes, drink, grass.....all of it only designed to slow down our perception of time....make us see the intuitive truth. 

"Time is where it is, at a point. Its you who is moving." 

3883 : Smoke and mirrors

Its a new start. One that we solemnise with whiskey and smoke.

The room is still. The air is silent. The radiator on the conditioner is the only buzz.

The mirror is blank. In some sense there is no real future. 

As the smoke fills the room, you appear more and more blurred. The silhouette of someone I probably don't know at all.