Oh, The Things I Write About

To Honest Musings, Badly Drawn Figures and Memorable 4 Days


I suppose this will be one of those rare, honest posts I end up writing – and immediately regret posting it afterwards. Maybe it is because that this blog was never meant to have an identity, my identity.

I’m sure with my fantastic procrastinating abilities, the number of people/ squirrels who read my blog have dwindled down to zero 1 or 2, so I think we’re safe.

I was away from home for 4 days because there was a conference at my university and I was a part of the organizing body. Since I was so busy; a clutter of mess, curly hair and paper and all, frantic typing. I barely had time to call my parents the first day – pretty sure, as they tried to contact me, they had already conjured up horrifying images of what could have had happened to our daughter – I finally did call them, as soon as I woke up the next morning, groping for my phone on the table and wincing at the crack my back produced. (Should call this post, “An Honest Tale of How My Back Was Murdered And Other Stories”)

Badly Drawn Figure#1

Badly Drawn Figure#1

Anyway, I continued to give them an update on “Hi, I’m still alive. Starving and sleep deprived but YOLO!” We said cheery goodbyes.  And then I got a tiny bit sad because even though I want to eventually leave this place, find my own corner somewhere in the world (this decision is backed by my family) I can’t help but think that when the time actually comes, would they really let me leave? 4 days felt like 4 years to them. It’s nice to know that I am valued. But…will I still go in spite of everything?

Skipping the hard questions, I think I had a good time at the conference. I laughed a lot, I cracked a lot of dead pan jokes – and teased a couple of people (this is how I show affection, okay) I ran the entire length of the corridor multiple times and probably lost a couple of kilos, I even danced – just some harmless swing of the hip, bones jutting out and hair swinging back and forth. Contrary to popular belief and a true shocker for yours truly, I turned out to be a great actress: my voice rose, features contorted and there was a hard edge to my words on one occasion (or maybe two!) I feigned anger when I thought there was a need for it. I couldn’t keep it up for more than 5 minutes though because by then, I was trying not to snicker. I mean, wow. This shit actually worked.

People can surprise you. I can vouch for that statement. I grew to like certain individuals, gained respect for some of them as they worked around me, and learnt their quirks and ways, I bet they wouldn’t know that ONE CREEPY GIRL was constantly observing them. But it was beautiful, and I couldn’t help it. It’s fascinating and so personal to get to know someone’s attitude and emotions from afar, like glimpsing into this tiny piece of their life through a stained window, so personal that I might as well be sharing what they were feeling.

badly drawn figure#2

badly drawn figure#2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maybe I’ m not as strange or creepy as that random guy from the Global Village who said to me, “I’ll definitely have my eye on you in the theme dinner,” Naturally, I was most amused by this statement and proceeded to give out a coherent reply of, “… that is not weird and creepy at all. Okay, bye now.” And then, Oh God, we made eye contact at one point during the theme dinner. I quickly looked away. Moving on.

There were some silly, hysterical moments too when the entire day seemed like a blur (this is also called severe sleep torture symptoms. Don’t try at home) I only remember my moods – happy, acutely aware of my youth and maybe, just a tiny bit awkward at suspended words and stares. Sitting with a group that obviously had left their inhibitions in the meeting room, at 2 am in the night, as music blared and familiar people whizzed around me projecting their terrifyingly high energy level at the godawful hour. Did I say something stupid in the haze of sleep? Oh wait, don’t care about that now.

However, I’m not sure of the impression I made especially since someone who knew me vaguely for a couple of months, a bit better in the last 4 days, commented on my career choices in a casual conversation. My eyebrows shot up at the suggestion he made. I’m sure he has his reasons but I was mildly offended. Then I smiled because this person had tried to make an educated guess, by placing what little he knew about me in a misshapen box. So I dismissed his assumptions and laughed it off. But really, I was kind of slightly disappointed.

Let’s just not pursue the subject. I’ll throw in a sentimental line here. I don’t think I’ll forget about these 4 days for a long time. It was more about the people, than anything else. It was a rush, pure adrenaline running through my veins, imaginary sparklers in my hands, experiencing somethings that I thought weren’t meant for me and liking it. Rolling my eyes at my inability to get a good picture taken, almost crying at the sight of the McCrispy meal that appeared at 4 in the morning, feeling my face burn with embarrassment when someone said something extremely nice to me, about me. I wasn’t 17 anymore. This happened after 5 years.

Emoshunz

Emoshunz

It was good. This post is too long. I’ll just shut up now.

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Oh, The Things I Write About

My Mother’s logical Argument, Braids and Time Travel


Mother (viciously brushing my hair and making a braid): …you girls don’t know how to make proper braids yet! Kuch seekh lo. (Please learn something) Stop looking like a homeless person.

I analyze myself in the mirror.

Me: I look like I’m going off to sell milk in the market and it is 1950.

Mother: Better than homeless person!

 

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Oh, The Things I Write About, T.V

Sur Kshetra, A Musical War – Well Sort Of


I first heard of Sur KShetra when I was out for a spot of fine dining and came across this massive billboard of Pakistani singer Atif Aslam and his Indian counterpart Himesh Reshammiya posing side by side and the backdrop of fluttering flags of both the countries. There was a bold heading that read: Atif vs Himesh.

In all honesty, the first thought that came to my mind when I saw it was that both of them were going to engage in hand to hand combat or Kabbadi seeing Himesh’s flaring nostrils and that grim pout (we shall see more of the pout later) even Atif Aslam had his arms folded tightly across his chest as a sure sign of steely, silent resolve. Fast forward to a month and several television promos later, it was revealed that a mega musical talent show by the name of “Sur-Kshetra” featuring contestants from both countries, mentored by Atif Aslam and Himesh Reshammiya respectively, was going to light the screens on fire. The mystery was solved, and my hopes of seeing some fist fights were dashed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Indian reality television is motley of kitsch, sentimental, mostly over the top glitz and glam, and Sur Kshetra is no different, they even tried to add a bit of ferocity by throwing in the patriotic scheme, with an apparent focus on “healthy competition” rather than the hostile state of affairs between the two nations. However, what we get is this – the young contestants sashaying in, spewing out dialogues like how (“InshAllah”) they shall bring the glory home and we love you, contestant from opposing country, and this is totally just a competition but we shall also crush you – Desh ko jeeta kar rehna hay, y’all. Plus, did we mention that we love you? This is only “Suron ki Jang”, okay?  

By the way, “Yeh Suron ki Jang hay!” is repeated every two minutes by the presenter, the judges and the jury lest, God forbid, we forgot the theme of the show at any given point. I almost expect Ayesha Takia – the host of the show – suddenly pulling out a Kalashnikov from her airy, sequined dress later in the series if the producers make anyone say this aggravating line one more time. “It might distract everyone from Himmesh Pouty McPouterson though,” my sister notes.

On a similar note, Atif/Himmesh already have their weapons of destruction –  bad music and Himmesh’s dry lips. Chapstick?

Ain’t no sunshine when she’s gone.

Speaking of Ayesha Takia, she’s the sweet, sugar coated eye candy in the entire show, and will make any one vomit rainbows with the visual assault of bedazzling dresses, and her constant giggles. On the judges’ panel, there is Asha Bhosle, Abida Perveen and Runa Laila – who’s serving as a neutral judge because she’s from Bangladesh. However, for the life of me, I can not understand what made Abida Perveen decide to jump aboard this bandwagon. She looked slightly uncomfortable and ill at ease at the beginning of the show but quickly managed to give out swift and sweet critique to the participants. Plus, I swear, her fluffy, curly hair has a personality of its own. There were times when I could visualize Abida’s hair as the fourth, silent judge. Insert slow-mo, spinning 360 degree camera shot of The Hair.

Asha Bhosle, unlike Abida Perveen, is in her element throughout the episodes, even singing out snippets of the song after the contestant’s performance to correct them which always lead to thunderous applause from the audience, and awe from the participant. “She should have been a mentor – She’s too enthusiastic,” my sister says. I disagree. That would mean renaming the show:“Sur Kshetra – And Asha Ji Kay Surs Aur Her Anecdotes about Sister and How Awesome Bhaarat Is” I’m not sure anyone can stomach this much of Asha Ji and her sister’s greatness without throttling themselves at least once.

Sorry.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The driving force behind the show are definitely not the contestants because I found them a pretty weak bunch. They are potrayed as Hindustani Surandaaz and Pakistani Jaanbaz (This is for real. I’m not making any of this up, and none of them have Kalashnikovs. Sorry) Also, they have no definite personalities of their own. There is no oomph factor; each one of them sounds the same, to the point that even Atif Aslam’s sullen face becomes interesting in comparison.

While there are overflowing reminders of Aman ki Asha, and Atif’s declaration of how Pakistanis are extremely caring, and Asha Bhosle slyly responding that Indians have opened their hearts and souls to Pakistani artists – a subtle snub at all the moolah they end up raking in their neighboring country[Insert Asha and Atif giving evil aaaez to each other] There is a very prominent tension on the set – scripted or not – and it has also been riddled with controversies. MNS chief Raj Thakray’s threat to disrupt the shooting of the show because of the presence of Pakistani artists in India is one of them.

Anyway, Sur Kshetra is pretty amusing. I wouldn’t be surprised that after this exchange of peace and love, Atif, Himmesh and the gang will end up at Wagah Border and with the power of their sangeet, so God help them, solve the rift between both countries.

———-I was told to write a review on Sur Kshetra for a class assignment, and I came up with this. Will be back with regular posts super soon. 

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