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Category Archives: Pearls.. (of so called wisdom)

Amy Poehler, Linklaters Paraphernalia and Frog Non Princes

There is a story to tell here, and it literally just happened, so I may need to collect my thoughts even as I write. You may prematurely guess the amphibian…ic(?) nature of this tale from the title, and you may not be far off. If I were a more positive person, I would write about unexpected turns of events where things you consider to be a burden on your life and your room, turn out to be useful. But being me, I can only concentrate on the disgusting aspects of the fact that I left Amy Poehler a fan mail a while ago, to which I got a reply that I was reading when a frog entered my room; and when I kissed it, instead of turning into a prince, it started trying to get to third base (I let practically anyone get to second base, so the boob grazing was no big deal). Also, err… the frog really liked Links? (it’s a law firm, for the lucky people who don’t know)

I finished one of my articles for History of Punishment, which in my book is a cause for celebration. So, in celebration, I was spending some quality time with myself (not in a self-pleasuring way. My Aunt Flo – short for Florentyna – called me a few days ago and reminded me about what happens with my vagina when God watches it. She didn’t tell me why God watches it) with some coke, some chips and a lot of 30 Rock and Parks And Recreation.

I was falling rapidly in love with Adam Scott, and even getting to the point where despite being in love with him, I could imagine ripping his clothes off his skinny little body and… THIS CONTENT MAY BE CONSIDERED TOO DIRTY FOR SOME READERS. LINKS TO THE DETAILS WILL BE PROVIDED AT THE END… and as we lay there, him smoking his post coital cigarette, and me drinking my heated Nutella from an industrial grade straw, he looks towards me and says, “You need a little meat on those bones, baby, so drink up.”

So that was happening. This was when I saw that cretin… ous(?) creature. It was huge (not really) and it was trying to assault me! (It was on my bed, which is as close as I’ll ever … oh Adam Scott…) It was a frog. Or a toad. It didn’t have orange tinges so I’m hoping it was a frog. It was small, now that I think about it with my normal heart rate and my larynx able to form proper consonant sounds. It was actually, quite small. It could have been covered up by the cap of a coke bottle. But that didn’t deter me. I was sure that despite its young age and small size, it would turn into Adam Scott once I made out with it, so we went at it, me and the underage frog-toad.

No, actually I crawled out of my bed, making a low pitch dog whine type of sound from my throat (which is what I did for about the next five seconds) before I looked for the nearest container with which to trap the kraken. Now technically, the nearest containers were right at the foot of my bed – my Beatles mug (Actually from London! Brought for me by M!), my beer mug (for juice and oats), my blue mug which I actually use for beer, and my set of smaller mugs/cups which I use for decoration (they’re cute) and also as shot glasses cause they’re roughly the same size. But even in crisis, I am proud to say my OCD was intact. My mind screamed, “Not those! You use those! No! Look the other way!”

As a proud follower of my mind, I looked the other way, and there, on my desk, was the Links mug. This mug had caused me a lot of trouble. It does not belong to me. It belongs to a friend of mine who was too lazy and precious to carry it in his hand when I had a bag. It was in my room the day that I cleaned the room, the fan, the books, the fan, my clothes, the dustbin and the utensils so it had been cleaned. I had wanted it out of my room because there is space in my room for my stuff, stuff that I borrow, but no space for stuff that I have in my room for a while for no good reason. But it has been here for a while. I had since used it to catch flies, a blue colored bee, and as a stand for my tiny mirror when I need to put on eye make-up. But despite its unwanted presence on my desk, (which, for the record, is not the place for mugs unless I am at the desk at the time when its on the desk. Or unless I’m posing at the desk for the invisible camera crew that follows me around sometimes) today, it saved my life and honor.

I grabbed it, and crawled my way back to the bed, all the while squeaking, “This is not ok, not ok, not ok. Not cool. This is bad. Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck…”, and located the devil spawn. Then in a feat of bravery and common sense, I trapped the frog under the mug. For about two minutes after that, I was on my knees, supported by my desk, doing some very deep breathing. When I came to, I realized I had done that for two minutes, which meant that for the sake of my peace, I had to check that the little green bastard was still under there. I slowly raised the mug to see that he wasn’t. A second later, I realized that he was and had only attached himself to the inner walls of the mug.

Having confirmed that the sluggish asshole was still in there, I did what Patrick Maitland taught me, and slid a thick card under the mug, picked it up, and released it into the wild. The wild that was far, far away from my door.

And so it was that the stupid mug which I didn’t want in my room saved my other mugs from having to be used for something disgusting. Really gives you some perspective, this whole incident. When life hands you mugs that have no place in your room, make frog/toad traps.

And before you ladies start picturing me as your perfect, well-breasted, lesbian Amazonian warrior in shining armor, do consider that this incredible act of bravery was conducted with the wheezy “No! Fuck! No! Fuck! No! Fuck! Gross, gross, gross, Fuck!” rant I mentioned earlier, and also by crawling that was very, very similar to this –

Despite these clear irregularities from the general stereotypes of Amazonian warriors, if anybody out there is interested in the services I can provide, along with the previously mentioned camera crew, I would be willing to consider it, for a nominal fee obviously. Send your mails to Billy Amazon, Shameerpet Law College. The address is on the website.

That’s all.

–          Billy

P.S. – to the owner of the mug – I will of course be washing the mug three times over, at the least.

ME: Well, this was ok. It still wasn’t what you were planning on writing. That story thing.

me: Dude. Just… you know that sucked.

ME: So? People should see that you suck. This blog was about honesty, right?

me: Yeah. But I have written some good stuff in the past. Its not like I’m bad at writing stories, I just happen to not have written anything good. You just want me to put up everything I ever write, including that shameful feminist post and the work-in-progress stories I write.

ME: Yeah!

me: That’s stupid. If its not good, I wont put it up. I retain the right to be my own editor.

ME: Go Fuck Yourself.

me:

P.P.S. – Here’s some more fun(ny)

Someone told me this is totally me. I like my reputation –

When People Make Fun Of You To Your Face For Being Weird

Hehehehe. Tumblr 🙂

I have discovered God on Facebook. Things have changed since 1st year.

 

Drunk Post and Acquiring Madness

Ips informed me the other day that dependence on alcohol starts once you go two entire weeks with alcohol intake every day. I hope in fifth year I don’t accidentally make it there. This is the third night drinking in a row. First night was a treat by someone who is technically a childhood friend but is way cooler than what childhood friends generally turn out to be. I’m drawing him a portrait of his face. Second night was very minor amounts of alcohol and other intoxicants where I discovered that certain songs make me nauseous now, since they seem to apply so well to me. I hate it when that happens. Who wants to be that cliché?

Now it’s the third night and I am drunk but not smashed. I haven’t done anything stupid unless you count clipping off my cuticles earlier in the day out of boredom; and then climbing up a tree, walking across the bridge between that tree and another tree and then climbing down that other tree – while drunk. Well, climbing down is a genteel term for slipping, scratching, falling down the latter tree. And falling on my butt. Didn’t hurt. But I have scratches all over my arms. And I wonder what will happen to me if I don’t get tetanus shots. Will I be a vegetable? Will I die? Will I have a fever? Obviously these possible results are in descending order of direness. And if you call that awesome tree-climbing stuff “doing something stupid”, you must be a really, really boring person. I don’t want you here, so –

Anyway, I walked back to campus with the group of people I intended to walk back with, in the process foregoing a possibly OK story from a fellow adventurous tree climber drunk. I checked mail, bathed, washed underoos, washed dishes, filled water bottles, and brushed my teeth. The latter so that Thomas the tea guy in the hostel wouldn’t give me the disappointed looks he generally gives me when I turn up drunk. Then I watched a YouTube video and saw some Seinfeld while having Ginger Tea. Cause you know, it’s healthy and good for my throat, and I’m all about the health and the good for the throat. *Insert oral sex joke here*. Oh the jokes!!

But I am reaching a point here. And I will try as hard as I can to not make this a disconnected, unfathomable (without fathom) drunk post, though some cynics may say I have already failed in that endeavor. The point is that this is that perfect stage of high/drunk. I’m not saying anything stupid or doing anything censorious, but I am nevertheless awesome and quite happy. And it brings to mind The Death of Salvador Dali, which I watched yesterday. I liked it. I’m not enough of a… the right term is “pretentious art nerd” to tell you with complete certainty what the film meant and why it was awesome. But to steal from my own words in a letter I sent to a friend of mine recently, “reviews of works of art often say more about the reviewer than the work itself.” This is of course a summation of what John Green has often said. So here goes: I liked it because to me , it spoke of how we all want to be more than what we are – to be more mad, more intelligent, more erudite, more rich, more worshipped, or to the overachiever, simply more. And about how we try to deal with our failings in trying to be that much, whether it is through using others and their words and promises as crutches (the “others” being Gala and Manic Pixie Dream Girls in general); or through using our minds as either tools to try and break everything down into a semblance of order (imaginary Freud?) or to support the madness we hope to gain (Dali). Aren’t I deep?

As someone aspiring to write, I have always wanted to be more mad, more interesting than what I am. To that end, if I were making a movie about myself, I would want my character to experiment with every drug I find anywhere, and live in a haze of hedonism and sadness. But I have found time and again that despite being given some opportunities to go down that path, I don’t want to. I don’t want to be any more mad than right now, when I say unto you, “Behold! For she will finish this blog post, watch more Seinfeld and The Office, and then put herself to sleep in the fashion she most likes. *wink wink, nudge nudge, say no more.*”

This is fun enough for me. And in many ways I have people to thank for this self satisfaction I have recently discovered is so rare in people. My mom for saying things like, “You can be the next Arundhati Roy” in the fashion of all overconfident, loving mothers. And my friends for spiking my drinks one day and getting it out of me : “I only want to write. That’s the only thing I feel really comfortable and good doing.” My sister for telling me my stuff was fun, and my dad for never stopping me from doing anything, though he could so easily have done that.

In all honesty, I wasn’t mollycoddled. My family doesn’t tell me they love me and neither do my friends, and I don’t tell them. But really, how the fuck is that something to even consider? Either way, I am unscathed. I am responsible for what I think and do, and with their presence, I have become comfortable with that fact. Asking for anything more is asking for too much.

So now, I can be completely wasted and not feel judged. I can be pretentious and talk about Dali one second and Lehman Brothers the next and not feel like I want to choke myself out of irritation. I can climb trees, walk across rope bridges and climb down trees while drunk, and I will still consider that a valuable experience the next day. If it isn’t obvious, I am seriously kicked at the fact that I did that despite the scratches and the weirdness of straddling a large tree trunk at one point.

Judy Garland not giving any fucks.

Someone took a picture of me on that rope bridge that I wish to post when I acquire it. I will blur out my face if I don’t like it. I’m allowed to retain a certain girlish self-consciousness.

ME:

Anyway, that’s all. Here’s some fun stuff.

“Zazzy!” I don’t care if Penny’s boobs are awesome. If I watch Big Bang Theory, its for this guy.

Anthropomorphic God Figures Gone Wild!!!

– Billy

 

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Rafik – the man who restored my faith in humanity; and Goa.

If there was anything I learnt from the movie Death Proof, it is that there are two kinds of good luck in the world. And yes, despite my lack of belief in abstract concepts, I have to face the fact that sometimes situations have magic or tragedy just instilled in the butterfly wings that change them. The first kind of luck is when you never, ever get into trouble.

Jean had that luck. She and I travelled to Old City in Hyderabad with nothing but a notebook full of instructions and transportation options I had taken from Google and her Android. If it were me in that situation with anyone else, or by myself, I would have lost my way, missed the local train that came once in 5 hours, gotten leched at in a discomforting way, or worse. With Jean, it was the simplest, easiest journey to a never before visited place, I had ever taken. I used to call it traveler’s luck. Absolutely nothing went wrong. We caught the train, went to char minar, went to the bazaar, had beautiful Lassi, had Fish Biryani at Shadab, caught the train back, got on a bus to JBS and at JBS, caught the last bus in a long time, to college. It was a beautifully uneventful day. We had some fifteen year olds being weird in the train but it was laughable.

Then there is my kind of luck, but I don’t know if I want to call it luck. It’s the luck that brings you to the very precipice of hell in the context of whatever you’re doing. If I have the whole day planned, I would forget my wallet; If I catch a bus with my friends other than Jean, it would turn out to be the wrong bus, leaving is in the middle of nowhere. If I go to Goa, we may get stranded in the rain with nothing but a broken down car and the garage we end up in. The good luck here is that my friend would agree to spot me; just before a bunch of horrible Gult men get out of their SUV, presumably not to help a group of girls stranded in the highway in Hyderabad, one of your batch mates passes by in an Auto and stops; and the garage on the side of the road would happen to be run by the nicest man I have ever encountered in my life.

The starter on the car was screwed and we got helped by a group of touring men in a mini bus to a garage. Which garage owner told us that his brother Rafik, would help if we could drive down the road to him. And we did.

 

This was it.

 

It was raining. All of us were in skirts and dresses. We were just girls, and it was a stretch of road where people don’t have any reason to stop. They happened to be working on a bike when we reached the place. Rafik spoke Marathi and in our insane luck, Nose Twitch spoke Marathi fluently. A rapport was established. He examined the car and told us that we should go see the city while he checked out what was wrong. We left to see the churches in heavy rain and all we ended up doing was go to Basilica Bom Jesus, see the dead guy therein and leave V in the hands of her boyfriend, who left soon after.

We decided to walk back to the garage, by which time, Rafik informed us that we had done nothing wrong with the vehicle and the starter was screwed. All that was left to do was talk to the lady who rented out the car. She told us to wait while she sent another car with a driver.

We spent two to three hours in that garage, in our car, with only Rafik, his colleague and the latter’s little brother working on their bike, because they hadn’t yet gotten instructions from the owner to fix up the car. The rain was as bad as it ever got during our time in Goa, and Me and S were soaked from going to the nearby shop to buy chips so we could eat something.

An hour and a half into sitting and gossiping, it occurred to us. Rafiq and Co. were working on their motorcycle in the light of a hand held bulb. There was no electricity supply but that. And he was called Rafik. In our worrying, we had missed the fact that during Ramzan, there were two Muslim men who had obviously not intended to work after dark, and had not yet broken their fast. They hadn’t looked up once while working on the bike. They made no suggestive remarks, and they didn’t look at us except to talk to us. To our faces.

 

This is them

 

We felt guilty beyond words. We ventured out in the rain again and this time, brought back a big packet of Kurkure and Oreos, gave it to them and told them to eat. They refused but we insisted. Thankfully, the kid brother had no reservations about eating the Oreos, and we left them to it. Rafik didn’t keep roza but his colleague broke his fast on Oreos.

Soon after, the driver came with a car, negotiated a price for the repair with Rafik, who adamantly insisted that we were not responsible for the starter fucking up. After thanking him and his colleague, we went back to our hotel for the night.

The next morning, we went back to the garage. He had bought a new starter and fixed the car, and took the money from the owner. We had told him we would be using the car again that day, so he had checked the engine, filled the coolant tank and generally made the car ready for use. He also refused to take any money for the extra service till we insisted that we would feel rotten if he didn’t. He took a hundred bucks. He also told us that if we needed help getting around the city while we were there, to call him, and he would send someone to help out.

We spent that day seeing Panji, Churches, collecting V back, and a little bit of shopping. We gave back the car to the lady who lent it to us, and checked out of South Goa Hotel to stay at Irish Pub Guest House in North Goa. We didn’t know how to get from there to the Station because the taxis cost a mother and her children, and JustDial would no doubt give us expensive and useless options.

We called Rafik again. He said he would pick us up at North Goa, go to Margao to pick up Nose Twitch who stayed with her aunt that night, and drop us at the Railway station for 1,300 bucks, less than half of what it cost us to go from South to North Goa the day before.

The next day he picked us up. This is the shameful part. He was talkative, and when he asked us where we were from, we gave the silent consensus answer we had been giving throughout the holiday – that we were from Bombay. I don’t know why we did it. Maybe it can be justified by saying that we as girls were entitled to be cautious. I think the likely answer is that being in NALSAR and the world in general, we are simply unused to someone being that nice, that friendly, and all without any ulterior motive. He played music for the most part during the journey.

We picked up NT and on the way to the Railway Station, he had to ask for directions. He told us that this was the first time he ever gave taxi services like he was doing with us. And as terrible as the people we are, I think all of us found that strange and mildly suspicious also. Once we were two minutes away from the Station, he stopped the car because we had passed a Kaju store. He remembered that S had wanted to pick up cashews for her Mum and went along with her to negotiate a good price for her.

Further down, he got a call, presumably from work. He told whoever was on the other end that he would be at work by noon, and he was dropping off a cousin at Margao station. Again, we couldn’t fathom why he was being that nice. But then we got to the Station, and we got off without incident, and I acknowledged that I may be a terrible, hypocritical person in many ways, but here was a man who in the nicest possible manner, had restored what little faith in humanity I had. We gave him 1,500 bucks and made him keep the extra 200.

I don’t want negative comments on this. I don’t want the cynical point of view. That he scammed us in some yet un-thought of way, or anything of the sort. Because here are the facts. If he and his friend hadn’t been the people they were, it would have been insanely easy for them to disappear us for good. We were four girls in short clothes, clearly tourists, clearly without anybody who would settle accounts if we turned up missing, clearly without any men within reach. In that situation, I never ever felt unsafe. I never for a second felt that this is a situation that I need to call my parents, my relatives, anybody, about. Rafik and co. told us we could wait, waited with us while working on a bike with a bulb, didn’t eat, and didn’t look at us or talk to us once in a manner that made us in any way uncomfortable. I have walked the roads in Hyderabad and Delhi in Salwar suits and felt more unwelcome glances on me.

Faith in humans – I haven’t seen you in ages. Hi again.

–          Billy

P.S. – On a lighter note, the trip to Goa was amazing. If Goa has an off-season, it’s not August as far as I’m concerned. Despite or maybe because of the above incident, it was a highly satisfying trip. There was alcohol, seafood, beaches, seafood, alcohol, swimming, Church ruins (you know I always like my churches ruined and silent), seafood and alcohol.

ME: Tell them about your crap songs.

Oh yeah, I discovered latent song writing skills. I’ma be the next Weird Al Yankovic.

ME: ROFL

Ok, maybe not, but I can amuse myself and my friends with my musical compositions about their daily lives. So that’s something.

ME: *eyes popping out for lack of air while laughing.

Anyway, there’s that.

 

Also, I have discovered that I’m considered a slut by some because of certain items I keep in my room, despite the fact that I have not yet had sex. Not that you have the right to call me or shame me as a slut if I sleep with 10 men a day, and not that it is anybody’s business, but you know what? I use stuff and it feels good; and when I have sex I’ll come and describe it in detail, since what I do with my body in the privacy of not-in-front-of-your-face seems to be of such importance to others.

 

Further, above incident with the car has made me appreciate, all over again, certain people that I still hate deeply. The ability of some people to stick around and make absolutely sure you’re ok, despite hating your guts, will always be appreciated. Be it in the form of coming as a group to save your hide, or in the form of melodramatically (and stupidly) handing over their watches to go off with a broken beer bottle, while drunk, into a fray outside a dhaba. So there’s also that.

ME: Weak.

me: True stuff is true.

 

Also, here are some things friends are for – getting high off unexpectedly strong and free Cosmos with. Waking up and going swimming with. Getting into trouble with. Keeping calm during the trouble with. Laughing off the trouble with. Getting drunk after long days with. Making drunk confessions with. Shutting up at beautiful sights with. Making you deal with your inner demons. Forcing you to look at yourself. Listening patiently when things are figured out. And most importantly, to rap and human beat-box with you near the toilets on trains. And this is not emo, it’s a very abridged diary of Goa travels.

 

Also, it’s my birthday, though my friends refuse to wish me due to past infractions of wishing that I may have continued over the years despite trying to be better every year. I find this highly amusing.

 

That’s all. I have to get back to washing my underoos and clothes worn in Goa.

 

Trying to make ragging funny – and failing

I try to be funny. Maybe I can manage it here, but I don’t know.

When is the right time to say something about what you believe in? What you think is right and wrong? And in my case, as small and insignificant as the wrong you see is, is there a right time or a wrong time?

I’m not trying to demonize anyone. There is zeitgeist for every time. The zeitgeist, the general consensus, what is agreed upon as the barometer to decide what is right and wrong, currently, is in favor of the practice we call ragging. And I don’t think anyone who does it is an asshole. Or deserves to be shamed, or anything of the sort.

As a person possibly engaging in some form of debate in order to reach a manner of consensus, I know I should perhaps bring down my point of view to something that is feasible to most people. I should probably say something like “I don’t have a problem with it, per se” or something along those lines. And if you look at it from one perspective, maybe I don’t. I don’t have a problem with seniors talking to juniors. Asking them about their opinions, explaining things like which teacher spits, and politely asking them if they would get you a glass of water. Even being rude. Rudeness is apparently a way of life in NALSAR, so no reason to be especially nice to new kids.

I have a problem with anybody having to do anything deferring to someone whom they have no reason to believe, deserves that respect. I can attest to the fact that the only reason I behaved ‘respectful’ to any seniors in my first year was because I was afraid of what they would do otherwise. Which was nothing. They couldn’t have done anything. I’m a girl, and as much as NALSAR resembles prison for some people, it’s not. If someone had made me believe that, I would have flipped off anyone who was being rude to me. It’s what I would do to any other stranger being rude to me.

If I could tell off priests for trying to tell me what to think (one of the better moments me and my sister shared before we could stand each other), I had nothing stopping me from telling off people that were being rude for no reason other than a misplaced sense of entitlement. And I really don’t like priests, but the ones I met obviously did more studying than even 4 years, in a field more boring than law, all the time presumably retaining their virginity and never jacking off. Why the fuck would I respect some punk ass bitch who thinks they know shit, now that they spent a few years in a protected walled city, working their ass off for something they’re probably not too sure of themselves? I would respect them because they’re human beings, sure. Because they have brains with neurons, through which the number of ways messages travel are more than stars in the universe, and I would respect them because they are nice people. I would have no reason to respect them if they were scaring me or making me do stupid things to amuse themselves.

Caveat – again, this is an argument against ragging. Not against the people who rag, no matter how close to home it hits most people. Ragging is not an atrocity, not the way it exists in NALSAR. It can be characterized as a weakness. One that a lot of people have, including me and even the first years. I think if I were to go around picking out only those people who do not rag to be the people I like and to be friends with, I would actually be asocial. And stupid.

And I hate having a fundamental disagreement with my friends, and not in the sense that I want to change their minds. I just hate that there is ever anything that brings on an awkward pause in an otherwise lovely conversation; and it happens to be because of something I brought up and something that is important to me.

With that, I come to more meta problems with me writing about this. My friends may be right in saying that sometimes/ most of the times I am too opinionated. And I don’t shut up about it. I agree, I shouldn’t comment as much in movie theatres. It is impairing other people’s right to enjoy it. Today was the first time S put it in that way, and I’m sorry I didn’t understand that without someone blatantly telling me about it. That is being callous with what other people like.

But I really cant see how far that argument extends to ragging. People who rag presumably like it, and enjoy it. But unlike watching a movie, they are enjoying at the expense of someone else. And unless it is someone laughing at a movie like Kya Kool Hai Hum (that is enjoying at the expense of my belief in humanity and at the expense of anyone who ever got raped), watching a movie is not at someone else’s expense.

And again, for a lot of people, it is not a big deal to be ragged. You expect it when you go to college. You expect that you may be treated like shit. That you would be asked to do things that you otherwise wouldn’t for complete strangers. It is the zeitgeist. It is what it is. And I am not a pioneer. I have no misconceptions about being the Frederick Douglas of Ragging.

But am I incorrect in thinking there is something wrong with a system that allows people to scare others and make them do things they otherwise wouldn’t? Lock them in cupboards and coolers? Hurt them and humiliate them?

Be as rude as you want. You are in control of what comes out of your mouth. Say whatever you want. But you should not have control over what anybody else does or doesn’t do with their body. You should have no say in that. How is that ok? How is that a manner in which a presumably decent society functions?

Maybe friendships start this way. But again, I have to ask, is that a healthy system to have? To have friendships that started off with one person being mean to the other? Sure, that may be how friendships start in KG, when the only way your child brain lets you interact with someone is by taking their water bottle and dousing them with the contents. But it definitely isn’t how I made friends in college, or how most people make friends in college. There is a reason psychologists have labeled it a form of Stockholm’s Syndrome.

And looking at this from the perspective of people who say I shouldn’t write this or say this or interfere when I think I should, I am genuinely perplexed. When is the time in my life when I should stop someone from doing something to another person that they don’t want? When should I tell off people on the street when they heckle women? When should I have an argument with a TC in a train about hassling a woman with a baby for not having a confirmed ticket when he was ok with a man in the next compartment not having one, simply because the latter ‘knew somebody’(One of those times that my dad set an example for me)?

Is 21 the right age? Will 22 be the right age? Do I have to do something other than have opposable thumbs and a working brain? Do I have to get better grades before I stop someone from ordering someone to do something for their amusement? Do I need to write a long blog post?

And maybe I should talk about it more. Be the wet blanket on people’s every day conversations when they’re not ragging or talking about it, bore them, and then watch them rag someone the next day. And please, please don’t tell me that it is simply my opinion that its wrong. Anyone who can remember being in first year and was made to do something even mildly humiliating cannot honestly say it felt ‘right.’ And if you don’t define ‘wrong’ as telling other people what to do (to wit – making them do jazz hands, pole dance, dry hump, stay in confined spaces, talk in toddler language, talk to a wall, basically anything that you would consider humiliating), or scaring them shitless, then I really want to know what your definition of wrong is.

What is the point from which I can become a responsible adult and stop something, or at the least openly say that I don’t agree with something? I apparently can’t do it now. And by extension I’m assuming I shouldn’t do it at the time when I ask someone to give me a job. And I definitely shouldn’t do it when I am working. So when is the right time?

I want to write. And I have realized I like my writing more when I’m honest. And the reason for that is because writing is on record. And I find that when I write something on the record that is honest, I am more proud of that than anything else. If for no other reason, (which would in my mind include common decency) than for what little self respect I have, is this not as good a time as any? Michael Moore said he regretted not saying anything when some ass authority at his high school graduation threw a student out for wearing the wrong tie.

Which is not to say I want to be Michael Moore. He’s a bit much. And I’m not saying I’m going to start a watch-dog group. Or go about policing people. That is a dumb idea if for no other reason than its lack of feasibility. I would however, like a better reason not to stop someone other than “everyone thinks its ok”. I have a problem with the fact that everyone thinks its ok. And if I haven’t explained why it’s a problem through this long, long post, then go ahead and ask me to explain further. I have infinite patience with this. But either give me a good reason why it is ok, one that negates what I have to say; or give me a better reason not to stop someone (even if in front of a junior) than “everyone thinks its ok”. Its not a passive act. Its active. And you are doing it to someone else. I think I have the right to say something, if not do something.

Again, I have to ask and tell the people closest to me – I can shut up around you. I will. Because despite my righteous indignation (and you know I say that sarcastically, right?) I care way too much about what you guys think than I should as an acclaimed asocial person. But I cant shut up in general, around others. Sue me, I have no batch loyalty for idiotic entitlement issues. Friend loyalty, yes; but not for an entire batch. I have no problems with people even screaming at juniors. To scream at people is something you cant take away from a person. But if I see something in my vicinity I don’t agree with, I will say something, more so if its from my batch, because really, I would have more say there. They are technically more my peers than anyone else. And I would genuinely like to know the politest way I can say what I want at that point of time.

–          Billy

ME: That wasn’t at all funny. If you’d been more hateful, it could have been funny, but noooo, you have to be nice and polite.

me: There is no point in screaming at people. And what do you mean more hateful. I wasn’t hateful. I made it very clear I wasn’t calling anyone an asshole. I was just saying the system that exists is shitty.

ME: And by extenion, everyone who takes part in it is….?

me: normal people. It is normal for people to behave per the times. It may not be ballsy, but its normal. It’s very likely I do something on a regular basis that is part of the zeitgeist that if i think about, I wouldn’t like much.

ME: This I would like to know. What does Miss PC do that she’s not proud of?

me: My instinctive reaction when i see blatant cleavage on a woman is that she should put the girls in a proper T-shirt. But I know that’s wrong because I have no right to shame someone else’s body. If man boobs can go about in public, there shouldn’t ideally be a problem with lady boobs. But I instinctively subscribe to the zeitgeist. And I think I recall a not too distant past when I found ragging stories from the Boys Hostel funny. And I might still find them funny. And so does everyone else. And I’m not proud of it.

ME: Fine, we’re not perfect. So what are you gonna do? Go about shouting at people in your batch when they do something dumb around you?

me: I don’t think so. Considering the fact that I really wont mind if most of them hate me, I think I would just point out that what they’re doing is stupid. If its someone I really dislike, I may add that they don’t really deserve much respect from toddlers, let alone first years.

ME: Really?! *Projecting Mr. Burns-ish anticipation*

me: No, I won’t do the last part. I would really like to know the nicest way to do this other than do nothing at all.

ME: So your stand on ragging is….?

me: *sigh* assuming I have the guts to follow through, I would say its wrong to people from my batch who are not my friends if and when they do it in front of me. And I may walk off in a huff/ run away before they can give me the evil eye or say something back to me….

ME: ……….

me: *shrug* Maybe I’ll say something more if I’m particularly ballsalicious that day.

ME: And you say you’re not a pioneering revolutionary?

me: ………….. *shrug* Maybe I’ll be better some day.

ME: ………….. Yeah I hope so. I couldn’t live an entire lifetime with your pussy self.

me: *nods*.

 

P.S. – on a lighter note, here’s something cool I found on tumblr.

 

Typewriters of famous writers.

 

 

And the palettes of famous artists

 

Van Gogh’s

 

 

Gauguin’s

 

 

Renoir’s

 

 

Monet’s

 

Reasons

Isn’t it sad/ strange that no matter how hard you try you can never find proper reasons for what you feel about things until you spend too much time researching it, or looking into it, or thinking about it.

For example, at age 13 or 14, the main reason I stopped going to church, before I read enough and learnt enough, was simply that I was bored beyond belief with sitting in Church. I didn’t want to wake up early on my one free day and go do something that I did not feel the need for. There were a few priests who would give interesting sermons that wasn’t full of scripture, but largely, it was dull crap, told in very bad grammar because the priests were generally newly converted transfers from somewhere in nowhere. I don’t want to sound snooty but if I am to wake up on a Sunday and go somewhere, whatever’s happening there better be interesting and well-spoken. And once the two priests who were sort of good at talking left the church my mother was taking us to, I really got bored. It was only much later that I came up with proper reasons like God Doesn’t Care or God Doesn’t Exist. And even today,I would actually still go to church only to make my mother happy (we’d both know it wasn’t sincere but she’s still prefer that), if only it wasn’t so boring.

Moving on, I was talking about how I feel or believe things first and then see if they can be justified. If they are, I start thinking it instead of believing, which is far more fun. If not, I stop believing. I really believed John Lennon was akin to a messiah/mahatma type figure before I realized he wasn’t. Damn reading – never leaves you believing.

Anyway, I was watching Jon Stewart on Youtube (again) before I finally understood why I adore him. Firstly, he is surprisingly smart, and very cute. Second, that stuff I was talking about in the last post, about hype being created about a lot of stuff that doesn’t really matter, eventually that’s what he was talking about – misinformed public. About people just joining in a protest with no knowledge of what the hell they’re doing. I hate to sound like I’m quoting people I dislike, but it’s way too much like cows being herded. I would have no problem with the entire population of this country joining in the lasher’s protest if they KNEW what they were protesting for. Right now, I can give an educated guess that less than ten percent of the people who are so keen to join in actually knew what the Lokpal Bill said, what the Jan Lokpal Bill said, and why they prefer the latter. Then it would be possible to have a debate, or an intelligent conversation about it. Right now, it’s just all of them screaming without any basis.

Stewart simply speaks against the basis on which so many people decide to belong to one side or the other on an issue. I’m generally of the opinion that the media has to be appreciated in many ways. It is important to have a free press. But the way in which it has reported on this thing is a little blasé. I’m not asking for editorializing on everything, but isn’t the reason people study journalism so that you can do research beyond what someone is saying and looking like? All I’ve read is ‘This I what Team Anna says’ and ‘This is what the Government says’, and even worse ‘Anna seen tearing up’ or ‘Anna beats Katrina’ (that last one was about him getting more Google searches. I was initially scared he’d recommended lashing her too. And it’s a scary situation when people want to know more about this from the internet of all places than they want to masturbate).

No effort is made by the media to confirm either of these opinions, to base them on facts, i.e. look at the Lokpal Bill, the Jan Lokpal Bill, assessing how they’re working in different states, finding out for themselves about the CBI, NGOs, different classes of employees, and most importantly, since this protest is all about the common man, how much it would actually help the common man? I have my own opinions on the latter, but I wouldn’t mind at all if it were disproved by facts – not by the collective anger of the masses, and not by beliefs, but facts. Edward R. Murrow practiced a more responsible journalism on the basis that if digging a little deeper than just the surface in order to bring the truth to light is editorializing, then so be it. Only Murrow did it responsibly – actually bothering to go places and find facts instead of sensationalizing the smallest things to fill up the time slots. Stewart says it over and over – the media is not going to give you any of the important information you need before you make up your mind. Just go to the source, understand it, and then take your stance so you can defend it properly.

And while I can understand how someone with an empty stomach and a family to feed can only express anger at how a government has failed him, the people using Google are not hungry, angry people. These days I don’t like to endorse most of my dad’s quips, but they’re just rebels looking for a cause. And while they are allowed to be silly in this way if they want – the gift of freedom of expression – it is ridiculous that the Parliament or the Government should feel threatened  or blackmailed simply because of the numbers, when most of the ‘numbers’ don’t have a clue.

In the end, what with BJP endorsements and the strange appeal an old vegetarian teetotaler seems to have for the youth, and all that goes with it, this whole movement just seems like an easy piece of meat for the media and for people who like to shout, to sink their teeth into, ignoring almost everything else. You really don’t have to do much work when you simply stick to holding debates that cover the same points day after day, do you? Laziness.

Now that I think about it, that’s probably what I’m doing too, although I’m a blogger with very little attention and zero responsibility. I can say Gandhi was gay and I still don’t have to defend it. Regardless, I will try my utmost to write about something else next time.

–          Billy

 

pbthbthbthbthb! – *its the noise that comes when you make a farting sound with your tongue out*

Fuck Yall.

I apologize in advance to people who don’t want to hear a rambling rant.

I’ve had fucking enough of this religion bullshit. I may be taking The God Delusion too far, but seriously, the utter fuckery that takes place because of god-damned faith is too much. Maybe it’s because I watch the news a bit more and read the newspaper more regularly, but how, HOW is it possible that people who have been doing that for longer than me don’t want to choke almost everyone you see?

Just finished reading the latest Outlook. There was an article about some random ass ritual in a fucked up obscure temple in Karnataka (BTW what is with that State? I loved Bangalore for the limited time I spent there, but everything else in that State seems like the worst parts of ‘Indian culture’ on crack). The Brahmins eat their fill and then the dalits roll around in their spittoon-like leftovers on the floor. It’s called maade snana. Apparently when an NGO worker tried to ask questions he was beat up. By dalits. And the fucked up ass-faces got congratulated by their bloody Brahmin priest, who I suspect did not let their shadows touch him as he said some religious crap, probably along the lines of ‘You still were dog-poop in your past life, but now, you can be a dog in your next life instead of elephant poop.’ And I know that’s not exactly how the mythology goes, but that doesn’t mean this particular version of rationale for casteism is any worse than the ‘real one’.

And it is one thing for the assholes at VHP and Co. to not say anything, probably (let’s face it) because they don’t see anything wrong with it. After all, if the dalits are dumb enough to take a dip in waste left over by the bastard Brahmins, they’re probably too stupid to vote, right? So why bother? Of course, the I-Can’t-Make-Up-My-Mind-About-Anything Congress decides to say they don’t want to hurt sentiments. Well, fuck you too. If there’s one this as unbelievably shitty as a collective irrational belief in weird-ass and degrading shit like this, by the degraders and the degraded, it’s the stupidity in ignoring it for the sake of sentiments.

Whoever asked ‘Why reason?’ – THIS is why, motherfucker. When you have people doing stuff like volunteering for rolling around in other people’s spittle, jumping into fires, cutting off their sexual organs, and committing murder-suicides, if you don’t see the need for reason, you’re a freak of nature who needs to be locked up. And possibly have all that shit done to you. You’re already a raving lunatic, more torture won’t have any overly damaging effects, right? And no, I don’t really mean that last bit. I’m ranting.

Then there was Jon Stewart coming out and declaring war on Christmas last week. Funny as shit. And more power to you man. Every day I see more reason for the American version of secularism. People really need to start hiding their religion like homosexuals had to hide their homosexuality. And they had no reason to be ashamed. Religious people really need to be a bit sorry for being gullible if nothing more. But my point is, after that, the ass-faced bigot who has caused me to challenge my previously held belief that I could at least listen to the bakwaas spewed by a Class-A twerp, i.e. Bill O’Reilly, commented on said declaration of war by saying, “Now, there is no question that Mr. Stewart is going to hell.”

And while that stuff said with such ardent belief was funnier than Jon Stewart could ever hope to be, and I still giggle at Stewart’s reaction, it’s still such fucked-up tosh. Yeah, people should be allowed to say whatever they want and believe whatever they want, even if its mentally deranged. But torture and spit bathing is not something should be allowed to do based on belief. And even if they are, the freedom of speech goes both ways buddy. I should be able to say that the Brahmins here are assholes, the Dalits are gullible idiots, the BJP and Congress are scramble brained ’fraidy cats and Bill O’Reilly will always retain his smug, self-important pee-brain that will provide endless ire and amusement to normal-brained people everywhere. But I won’t because if I do, I’d offend too many people.

BTW, Colbert made 2 guys dressed as Santa kiss on his show. Brilliance!

And then the Ramdev shit. Yeah, it looks like the Congress really fucked up there. The least they could have done when trying to take away someone’s free speech (which in this case was used for what prima facie looks like mindless argle-bargle), is not leave a paper trail about how that was exactly their plan. And by paper trail, I mean newspaper trail. I am no supporter of the yoga dude. The whole seeing people’s heart beating thing freaks me out. And it’s one thing to say ‘I don’t like what you’re doing’ in a protest and offering suggestions, and quite another to say, ‘Do what I say, even though I have no expertise on the concerned subject or I will fast unto death, and convince my minions to also commit slow mass-suicide.’ Kool-Aid, anyone? (I may be a bit too into finding out about serial killers and the like.) And the guy’s an idiot for his personal actions. I repeat myself when I say, why didn’t you just sit there and refuse to budge instead of making a clown out of yourself? Sad that what seems like the only good idea Gandhi had is adapted sufficiently into the public consciousness of people everywhere but in India.

And WHAT THE FUCK is up with this censorship bullshit? I really don’t like what the BJP gets up to when it gets in office, but someone needs to tell the Congress that in order maintain a façade of mediocrity in a country where there’s BJP on the one end and CPI on the other, and mediocrity seems to be the selling card of the Congress for a long time, they need to stop prancing around getting scared of everything written about them. The BJP had much worse shit written about them (with good reason) and all they did about it was say, ‘You lie!’ rather unconvincingly. If you have a basis for doing the stuff you do, then drum-roll and speak. If you don’t, be like politicians and say that you did not have sex with that woman. Don’t try to get people to shut up. The internet has too many loopholes for that to actually work.

I mean come on! Before this, you only had sections of middle and lower class up in arms about stuff that the rich and the upper middle class couldn’t really care less about. But now you have to go and alienate possibly the only demographic left to you – i.e. the sort of tolerant, upper middle class and rich young folk who need the internet to breathe, by taking away one of the few things they care about- pornography. Get your act together, or you will force them to actually get off their asses come election day and, having no other options, vote for the CPI. Which may not be a very bad thing, but they do have some fucked-up tendencies also. But then again, which one of you assholes don’t?

Anyway, that’s about all. Wow, I’m so pretentious right now. I would not post this but i spent about half an hour on it, so waste not.

Boom!

– Billy

 

 

 
 

Call me Ishmael…

Am in literary heaven. Have also realized the awesomeness that is being gifted a gift-card. Am also feeling great respect for my cousin Roshan’s gift-giving skills- will be eternally grateful to him.

Roommate once said that the reason she read Gabriel Garcia Marquez was because the language was such that you could get lost in it. I never got the point of that, especially with reference to Marquez. As far as I could see, if I didn’t enjoy the story, the book fell flat. I adhere to that, but now I do know what she meant.

Melville. Herman Melville has language that enchants me. The only explanation I can think of is that it is genuine in its genius. It has all the trappings of language I hate – complicated sentences; words I have to refer the dictionary for; and a certain degree of other-worldliness, something that seems to cancel out any sort of colloquialism. But Melville’s language does not seem forced- not even a bit. This may not be the case, but the sentences have a flow to them that I can’t help but think that he wrote them as he thought them. That somehow, he was one of those gifted few who not only spoke enchantingly, but THOUGHT enchantingly.

Admittedly, quoting Rory Gilmore “I know it’s kind of cliche to pick Moby Dick as your first Melville.” But what was I supposed to do – pick up a lesser novel for the limited amount left in the Gift card (owing to my enthusiasm. I wonder if they arrange the bookshops like they do the casinos – let all the aisles lead to a tempting piece of literature, have beautiful people around serving you free stuff – they did have perfume spritzers in the bookshop, – filling the air with music and chemicals that both relax and excite you so you keep buying even though you may run out…. I didn’t mind)?

Other books I picked up – Carpe Jugulum by Terry Pratchett, Dickens’ The Old Curiosity Shop, Anne Bronte’s The Tenant At Wildfell Hall, A leather bound copy of Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter (for 60 fucking bucks!), and Joseph Heller’s Catch 22. Anyone reading this may feel free to give opinions, comments, praise, criticism regarding all of the above.

There’s something magical about reading those first lines of a book. There’s something magical about books in general. The fact that knowledge, experience, beauty, pain, suffering, love, and anything at all in the world is somehow written and bound into something. That I, lying in my bed, can experience if not the actual substance of someone else’s experiences, then at least a faithful shadow of it, is an empowering thought.

And when I pick up something like Moby Dick, or The Scarlet Letter or Sophie’s Choice (finished that a few days ago- it was everything an more. That came as a surprise since I’m used to being disappointed in heavily accoladed books), I bask in the idea that I’m becoming part, not only of the experience, the skill, the genius of the author and the story that is told; but of a tradition, that of reading and knowing something that is held precious and sacred among all those who have read it previously, and all those who are going to read it. Can you blame me for feeling a thrill when I can talk bout a book, and everything I love about it with someone who has also read it? It’s like I said about certain films – The Godfather, Pulp Fiction, Sholay, Casablanca – you can love it, like it, or hate it, but you HAVE to watch it in order to BE.

Call me romantic, but I seriously believe that everything important in the world can be learnt if you read enough good books, and watch enough good movies.

I don’t know how long I’ll be able to keep reading like I am now, seeing as how college is going to start soon, but I’m glad for writing this. And yes, I purposely, and perhaps pompously, chose to use poetic (prosaic?) license and use wrong-ish grammar there.

Wish me luck reading,

Toodles.