Monday, May 14, 2007

Cursed to be Born

It was one of those days when you are just chillin ...leading ur mundane life the 'coolest' way you think .. and then something just happens and brings the world in your face ... smashing the comfortable cocoon that you build around yourself.

I was just meeting up with Indranil and TAG at PVR saket ... sipping onto some iced eskimo outside Cafe Coffee Day and having a couple of doobers. We were discussing people, old times and the usual stuff.

Four little boys came running towards us. 2 of them looked around 6-8 years old while the other 2 looked around 13-14 ... harmless. They all wore the ragged, torn, dirty clothes that the slum children wear. They were all dark skinned .. probably from the dirt that sticks on them and the sun they have to face due to the lack of a roof on their heads for much of their days. The two younger ones were visibly running away from the elder ones.

One of the bigger ones punched a younger one in the back and he sort of stumbled towards where we were sitting. The other younger one followed suite. The young ones grabbed the legs of mine and TAG's chair and started complaining generally to everybody that the elder ones were beating them up. The elders tried to drag the kids away from us but they held on to our chairs tightly.

Till that point we were pretending not to notice the ruckus. We were pretending to have one of those 'coffee shop' discussions (u know the kinds ... 'so how's he/she' .. 'that one was a bitch' ... 'that movie was awesome' ... highly shallow in comparison but necessary and entertaining). But the scene unfolding next to us was getting a little too loud and a bit violent to be ignored and to be allowed to be in the background. The little ones were, every once in a while, looking at everyone sitting there and tellin us that they were getting beaten up with the hope that someone would come and help them.

At that point, since this was happening right next to our table ... and chairs !! .. we decided to tell 'all of them' to buzz of and not bother us. I looked at one of the elders and told him to beat it and stop bugging them and us. He just looked at me .. with no fear in his eyes .. or rather a slight arrogance, said that the little kids were not coming with them.

We thought that this would subside and the went back to our 'conversations'. At that time one of the elder kids took out a match, lit it and pressed the lit stick on one of the little kids' bare legs. Hearing the cry of pain I snapped back at the elder kid to stop this immediately and buzz off. He again looked at me with those eyes and told me that the little kids owed 'em money and they were not returning it. We again got back to our 'conversation'.

Then I heard the thing that gave me goosebumps. The elder kid came close to the kid who was holding on to the leg of my chair, and said to him politely that if they came now then 'he' would just take the money or else later on 'he' would take the money and cut off one of their hands or legs. At that moment the scene next to me no longer remained the background radio static and my ears were riveted towards them.

The elder kid repeated that threat again.

He tried to pull 'em again but to no avail. That's when I told ID that these kids were probably a part of those begging rackets and it was so unfortunate for the young kids. At which he reminded me that it was equally unfortunate for the elder ones as well as they had probably lived through similar ordeals. Then we discussed our 'helplessness' in this regard.

We tried telling the elder kids again to take a walk while they kept hovering around and coming in once in a while.

Finally, after a while, the elder kid managed to pull one of the kids free from his grip on the chair and dragged his some 2-3 feet before picking him, ruffing him up and then dragging him towards the back. The elder kid then came to the little one sitting next to my chair and told him politely that they'd already taken his brother and that if he didn't follow suite then they would cut off his brothers arms and later his as well.

The other little kid wiped his tears, stood up .. and walked with him.

We were silent for a while. I suppose the same things went on in our heads ... sadness, disghust, anger, helplessness, frustration at the helplessness ...

All my way back I kept picturing those little kids howling while they got their hands or fingers or something chopped off ... and then back on the road again the next day showing their disability and begging. Out of which they'd have to pay the leaders who run this racket.

I hate this feeling .. this feeling of helplessness. It is so obvious that a war or a movement (or whatever you wanna call it) has to be raged against these gangs at a social, legal and even a physical level to stop this menace.
I hate lamenting about these things to other people ... acknowledging that these things happen and it's such a shame and we're so helpless .. I hate it. I think it's quite looser-ly.

It's like the way I feel about Bombay or Delhi or our country and it's people as a whole. We like to call ourselves resilient. We take pride in the fact that we have our families blown away by terrorists one day and then we still manage to go to work the next day like it was nothing more than a cockroach dying in our bathrooms. Well that's just stupid .. there's nothing to be proud in that !!! The same millions of people travel by the same trains that were bombed the last day simply because they have no other option !!! Most of those people simply cannot afford to not go to work the next day and they just don't have any other mode of transportation but those stupid trains ! It is not resilience or bravery or an ability to pick ourselves up after we fall and other fabled things like that ... It is just helplessness, cowardice, indifference and a hope that it won't happen to us ... it's just disguised that way in which the media also plays a major part. It's a sad state of affairs.

Now ofcourse I am not saying that those people should mourn the next day or not go to work or pick up arms against the perpetrators ... I am just saying that let's not be hypocritical about it ... and let's maybe .. slowly if it may .. do something about it !

The same goes for things like the begging racket that I came to see a side of today.

If all that we .. the 'educated' people can do about it is discuss it intellectually and criticize it .. then I guess a lot of those 21 odd years of our lives just went down the drain .. and then got their limbs chopped off.

I feel like such a loser.

Oh yeah ! and by the way .. the amount that the little kids owed the elder ones was 50 Rupees. I don't even get a fucking Iced Eskimo in that much !

Sunday, May 13, 2007

The Man on the Moon

Many a times, I have looked up in the night sky, looked at the moon and wondered ... What if there was a man sitting up there who had nothing else to do but to look down on earth and look at everybody. At the outset it may seem that I am talking about this 'god' person. But I am not. Reason : Going by the whole concept of the omnipresent , all -knowing god, he would already know what we would be doing and would do eventually and therefore he would not need to look at us !

Anyhow, back to the man on the moon. So this person has nothing else but to look at us (Don't ask me why). With the shit loads of people breeding and crawling on this planet, he would probably not have time or the attention span to look at everyone. I mean we all go through the same miserable routine of growing up, puberty, first kiss, first job, first heartbreak, first marriage (increasingly nowadays :D), shitty relative, rebellious kids, estrangement, death, etc. So all this being so mundane and common wouldn't really interest him. Even the special ones ... Charles Mansion, Nithari, Steve Jobs, etc. have become plenty over the thousands of years of human evolution, development and eventual self-destruction. So what I am trying to get at, is who exactly would he be watching ???

If you insist, I am talking about that thing which everybody wants (well ... mostly), to be remembered, to be noticed. But I'm not talking about the fame and legends that are made due to impressive acts of bravery, crime or foolishness, etc. What I am saying is, if we are alone in this universe (what freaks !!!), then all these things would really become ... well pointless. Thousands of years from now when this rock becomes lifeless thanx to our leisure's (optimistic estimate), when that man would sit next to his fireplace with a drink in his hand and gaze at the planet ... who would he remember ? The guy who made the ipod (nothing against apple here ... just an example) ? Or the nuts who flew an airplane into buildings mistaking them to be doors of nirvana ? Or the skinny guy wearing a dhoti and holding a stick who lead a country called India to freedom. ? Or was it the man who wrote a book that lead a whole race of followers to a nonsensical isolation from the rest of the world and at war with them ? Or was it that one who walked on water and got nailed to a cross by the same people who he thought he loved so much ?

Or was it the anonymous couple who loved each other to the limits ? Or was it the anonymous man who lived his life the best way he thought he could ?

I guess the man on the moon is really me when I'm taking my last breaths ... or maybe when I'm dead and my conscience is floating about aimlessly in limbo. What would i think about myself ? Would I have been able to see myself from the moon amongst everybody else ?

The answer to this I do not know.

Falling in love is hard on the Knuckles !

Yes I am committed again ! And again .. this time it seems for good !

I met her through a friend of mine .. Animesh. He had been dating her for a while but now he didn't have enough time for her. Since I am not doing much till I join work, we thought it would be a good idea if I took her for a while ... till I start working.

It was pretty much love at first sight ! I had heard about her here and there but till now I hadn't had enough time and money to afford her ! But this time I got her cheap.

She's a bit old and outdated .. but then she's got loads of experience .. Lots of variety !

She is amazing ! The second day I went shopping and bought new stuff for her ... various different things I could put in her (damn ! very corny ! and a bit disghusting as well :D).

And for the last 4-5 weeks since I've had her ... I've done nothing else but play with her ! (This has potential of being very corny ! :D). I start at 9 in the morning ... and am spending time with her continuously till 5 PM ! And then we resume our activities in the night as well ! And not for a single moment do we get bored !

Although falling in love with her has been a bit hard on my knuckles .. and my fingers ... especially my thumbs .. as they tend to get a bit tired after a day of fondling and hand holding ... but still .. noone's minding !

She's the best .. I think every man should have her ... atleast for some time ! :D

Now i really didn't want to address it as feminine .. but then I didn't wanna sound gay as well ! :D

She's my PS 2 :D