Brave to be you

Dorothy had a warm body. She felt cold even during the soothing months of monsoon and those that followed. Her mom would wrap her in layers of winter clothes if it started drizzling outside. However, she wouldn’t slip into those layers to school. This was as much out of a fear that school children would tease her for the ‘bunny-bear’ that look she carried as the teenage blues she was going through. She presumed it was easy to bear the coldness of weather than to bear the tantalisation that her garb would invite. On days when she felt it was difficult to sit in the class without shivering, she would wear a nylon shirt under her school uniform to fight the chill. On other cold days, she would rub her palms under the desk.

Winters would bring her joy, for she would be able to wear warm woolen fabric, thick coats, muffler and scarves without fearing any raised eyebrows.

On a Sunday morning Dorothy caught fever, or fever caught her, as she insisted to word it. Dorothy had to be injected so that she could write her examination the next morning. That night, Dorothy was wrapped in the blue blanket and spent the night wondering if she would have to wear sweaters to school. Throughout the night she would try to come out of the blanket to experience the magnitude of cold outside it and then crawl back into it, quick enough to escape the harsh air.

The next day, fever had subsided but she couldn’t drop the sweaters. She realised it was too foolish to appear for the exams without looking like a baggage of clothes.

At the school gate, she fumbled with her heavy legs, overburdened with fear and trepidation. Once in, she scurried groggily to vanish into her class room. She noticed that except for a few surly boys and girls, nobody appeared to give her look any serious thoughts.

The day passed without any fuss, leaving her astonished.

This experience imbibed in Dorothy the courage to wear sweaters. She tried her luck again in the same sweaters, and later made it a practice. She would don that ‘bunny-bear’ look whenever her skin felt cold. It became less of an effort for her to muster the courage to wear that garb. To her surprise, some other children of her school too started wearing sweaters during a cold day of monsoon or early winter, as if they were waiting for her to fuel them with bravery. Dorothy had never felt this proud to wear coats on a non-winter day.

She now wears what her body asks for, not what she thinks others would be pleased to see her in.

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Mind the Gap

Photo: garylellis.org
Photo: garylellis.org

Except for the initial butterflies fluttering in the stomach the time I got my first mobile phone, I have always been a cell phone hater. Except for the year I was drowned in chatting on Orkut and yahoo messenger, I have been a perennial social networking critic. It’s such a waste of time and energy. Hackneyed words!

I realized that I had strangled enough months in being socially active over the net and felt it had become boring to talk about nothing with the same people at college and then in chat windows. The entire thing appeared pathetic now. I was almost done with my hunger for networking when Facebook saw popularity and I had to create an account because Orkut became a no-man’s-land after losing preponderance; I began forgetting passwords because of long gaps in logging into accounts.

I remember how I would curse mobile phones when a guest would come home and my dad and the guest would be busy talking on their phones, ignoring each others’ presence naïvely.

We also indulged ourselves in the trend of using sentences with few words and words with fewer letters. Okay became professional, okie or okies was chosen for sweet friends, OK for quickness and if you didn’t really care, it had to be just a ‘K’. ‘K’ also read rude to many, including me. When you replaced take care by ‘tc’ it meant you don’t care indeed. Can I say that words not only lost letters but also their meanings?

Did it hurt relationships and privacy? Maybe yes. For many of us it did. It did bestow upon you the opportunity for connecting to those long-lost friends; it did take you away from those who were near you. It did make some of you famous by offering an open platform; it did destroy many other innocent bubbles when opened too much. It did make life lighter and heavier. You think technology spoils relations? My response to the poll was – my phone is in my pocket when I’m with humans. My mom was brought up in her aunt’s lap. It’s been years we met her. My mom adores her for the woman she is and for the mother she found in her. For what I know of my grandmother, she has had a challenging life. And the challenge continues to accompany her as her only friend. Neither could she fight it out nor did she cry. In the past 10 years, every time we tried to meet her we failed for reasons worthy of obscurity. The day we had a video chat with her made a distance of thousands of miles feel like a foot away and the time of a decade just milliseconds of lag. I realized that technology is worth a huge hug. It surely brought humans closer. What could have made life of a lonely old woman easier than seeing her beloved kid smiling at her with watery-eyes? She must be about 70 now. And frankly, with a heavy heart, I say that she has seen enough of life.What looked difficult to achieve for years was made possible by a simple chip in a phone.

Do you remember the first thing that came to your mind when you were locked in your home? You used your phone to usher help. When you felt lonely and wanted to throw it out; when you were leaving and wanted to say a goodbye one more time; when your great grandpa was in pain and wanted to say ‘God bless’ one last time; when you came out that deadly cold examination hall and wanted to tell your friend how betraying the questions were; when you bought a new pair of shoes and wanted to tell how your bargaining skills have improved; when you sought an idea before dropping an application for that well deserved off from work; when you wanted to yell but only that person would care to hear you out; when you had no courage to talk and preferred to text; when you were in an emergency and needed to call the police or your family;  when you wanted to talk about nothing that can be classified a reason. I have abhorred technology (read phones) for its scope of being abused and misused just like I ignore good things about everything else and focus on the crumminesses. I hope it’s not the case with you.

On faithfully bringing past into present

Photo:musicandlyrics.tumblr.com
Photo:musicandlyrics.tumblr.com

I was visited by a few friends for a quick hang out at my home. Hangouts have to be quick these days. The world we have come to live in! The first things that they noticed about me were my clothes. It somehow made them laugh. Forget feeling bad about it, I quite enjoy when my friends laugh at me. Who would allow me to laugh at them if I don’t tolerate the same on me? That day, I was in my most comfortable clothing. A loose pinkish-white T-shirt hung on my body. It used to be pink someday and fitted me well. The shoulders didn’t droop to my arms as they do now. The pants were saggy with pockets hanging down. Their laughter influenced me to reflect into the mirror. Well, I saw a frail body with some washed rags on it. The T-shirt was pinkish but had some paleness on it. I saw the pockets were not the only beings trying to get rid of the pants; some threads were guilty too for the infidelity to me.

It’s been innumerable times that my mom asked me to throw old clothes, but I always deferred her demands. Especially this pinkish one, I feel fresh in this T-shirt. I tend to believe that its colour passes its grace to my skin complexion and makes my cheeks blush. There’s one more, which has its colour falling somewhere between Kelly-green and yellow-green. The colour simply brightens my mood.

Like billions of effusive humans on earth, I feel attached to my personal belongings. These belongings wither while spending years in embellishing me and you. While these could be things of the past for my family, they have earned their transition into my present.

My mom is a cleanliness freak. She keeps combing the house for unused, overused and waste items to show them the door. I keep confirming with her if she didn’t throw the pair of slippers that I bought off a Goan street. The one that had its one foot coloured black and the other white. Yes, the one at which women laugh and never believe that I bought the right pair.

The first mobile phone that I could call my own happened when I was in first year of graduation. I had always insisted my dad on getting me one with features that allowed me to do a lot more than just make calls and send short messages. He was generous enough, as always. He never says a no if you privilege him to manifest his shopping skills. Within a few months of its presence in my pocket, the display of this phone crashed. I never had the opportunity to understand why. After it was fixed, I witnessed it slipping down from my hands into water. After many more repairs, I finally decided to let it go. However, I felt guilty of losing it and asked my dad to get me a basic phone.

This Mr. Basic passed the test of time. Not that I never dropped it on the tiled floor or lost it in college. But Mr. Basic would always come back to me like a loyal friend. I never had to undergo the pain of leaving it into unknown hands for a repair. I was touched by the cuteness and innocence of this modest being.

Years passed and I realized it was time that I bid Mr. Basic goodbye and buy a better one. However, I kept Mr. Basic safely in a casket for a timely visit to old memories.

The phone that replaced Mr. Basic lasted only four months. For what I remember of the day it left me, I have a strong feeling that a co-passenger must have stolen it from my bag. The day had been nonplussed to me.

I felt bewildered. I sobbed. Then, I saw Mr. Basic smiling at me.

My affection for this basic phone multiplied.

A year and a half later, my sister coaxed and cajoled me into buying a new phone. She has a tablet, and two phones, she felt this was the need of the hour as we were missing out on a lot of fun and sharing because I didn’t have a smart phone compatible to hers.

When friends ask me to rate my new phone’s fidelity, I have no answer. I know just one thing- Mr. Basic’s heart still beats. I have no qualms about anything else.

The idea of having better phones proved to be paradoxical. they surely weren’t any good when compared to my basic phone. They couldn’t tantamount to the commitment demonstrated by Mr. Basic.

Mr. Basic will always travel with me into my present.

As for my mom, she too is smitten by Mr. Basic. But for other things, she won’t take me seriously.

Mom: I’m throwing this old set of earphones as you already have three new pairs.

Me: But it still functions. I mean the left earplug works.

Things I couldn’t change

city-of-lost-children-2

It was when I was sitting inside the bus with my elbow resting on the window, I didn’t realise when my sleeve became wet, I didn’t realise when I pulled my hand inside and the fabric around my body, too, became wet, I didn’t realise that my entire sleeve was wet because I had rolled it up. I realised when the wetness made my arm itch. The not-so-here me.

I didn’t realise when I became an “Olympic walker”. I would start from home 3 minutes prior to my scheduled history class and walk fast so that I make it in time. You ask why 3 minutes? I was only trying to save the commuting time because I was keen on making something good out of my life by channelising all my time towards academics. (After all I was a kid.) I realised when some classmates on the way, classmates who would always come late after hanging around, would call me a Marathon runner or an Olympic walker. But I never cared enough. Now, however, I feel I could never get that Marathon thing out of me. I still walk fast.

I term my days in school as my character cementing days. So calculative about time I was that I never realised how I made use of my two eyes. That mean and stingy clock was an apple of one of my eyes. With one eye, I would read stuff and sleep, and with the other, I would cuddle the timepiece. Such is the assimilation that now, I miss saying, “Oh. I didn’t realise it was four!” unless I’m writing or reading. And this, even if I am trying to kill time; even if I am at home with no work to do, I feel it’s 2pm now, I better have a bath., then the energetically challenged me says, Ok, 30 minutes more. Like everyone else, I count minutes when I have to wait and I ask myself to slow down. I am impatient.

My mom gives me a file to hold and forgets. I don’t realise for how long my hands have been clutching it until I’m told to keep it somewhere safelyI live in thoughts.

Ever since I was a child, I had been advised by elders to try talking more. On reading this, some of my friends will find those elders and have them assassinated in their backyards ‘cause they curse me for my loquacity while others ask if I have an ego or a shell that I can’t burst. Thanks to this blog I won’t burst that shell. A book told me that Cancerians have split personalities. Freaking truth, I say. I have two personalities. I love them both. 

I’m prone to losing and spoiling things. Call it a phone, a worthy endorsed cheque, electronics or anything. I have either dropped them somewhere and blamed it to cutpurses later, or climbed up on a TV to break it or misplaced important documents and cards. When compared to a sibling whom I am elder to and should be setting an example for, I always notice myself near a towering cliff, however careful I try to be and however careless she is known to be. I am still irresponsible.

Not that I would never have tried to break the rules. Had I only realised…

So the first Liebster nomination

So my first Liebster nomination is here, and this comes from a creative artist – she makes lovely cartoons. She is Blackluminescence. Doesn’t this name say something? She can also make you laugh with her fun to read posts. You can find her work here.

Thanks Blackluminesce! 🙂

Questions set for me:

leibster-1

  1. What or Who inspired you to start a blog?

I just realized how passionate I am about writing and a blog will improve me.

  1. What is the one thing you have always wanted to do?

Make all women powerful.

  1. What is the best book you have read recently?

To choose one best book is difficult. I am a Dan Brown fan. However, I picked Cane and Abel last year and it read like amazingly enormous amount of work was done into writing it.

  1. What annoys you the most?

I have written a complete post on this. But yeah, over- judgmental people turn me off.

  1. Your favorite blog?

Harsh Reality for a quick laugh, Cristian Mihai for inspiration, Aliza @ Worthington Post for her brave words, My delusions for the picturesque writing, and many other blogs.

  1. What is the best and the worst thing about blogging?

The best – it gives you a voice. The worst – It makes you shout.

  1. What is your favorite TV show at the moment?

 None.

  1. What can you not live without?

I’m mostly dead when I’m not reading.

  1. Name one skill that you wish you had?

I wish I was a Tennis sports star or at least I could sing well. 😉

  1. What is the high of your day?

I feel up if I write something I enjoy reading later.

  1. Chocolate or Vanilla?

Vanilla topped with chocolate.. 😉

Now, it’s my turn.

And the nominations are:

  1. http://sabethville.wordpress.com/
  2. http://lyricallifestyle.wordpress.com/
  3. http://elizabethmeltonparsons.wordpress.com/
  4. http://huesofasoul.wordpress.com/
  5. http://kipsthoughts.wordpress.com/
  6. http://literarylawyer.wordpress.com
  7. http://kissingthemadhattergoodbye.com
  8. http://risingwoman.wordpress.com/
  9. http://paulbrodie.wordpress.com/
  10. http://patrickoscheen.wordpress.com
  11. http://gvk2.wordpress.com

And something I would like to know from the bloggers I have nominated:

  1. If given a chance to suggest a topic for the weekly writing challenge on WP, what would you suggest?
  2. Name a blog that inspires you.
  3. Who’s your favourite person?
  4. Why is that person your favourite?
  5. What makes you continue blogging?
  6. Any embarrassing moment of your life that made you laugh? (Tough one.)
  7. Tell us a habit of yours.
  8. Have you ever felt love for yourself? Why? (This could be for a quality in you or for something you did.)
  9. One crazy/silly dream of yours that you wish to fulfill.
  10. How was your day today? Be honest.
  11. What was the first award of your life?

Some rules for the nominees:
1. Thank the blog that has given you the award.
2. Answer the questions that have been set by the blogger who nominated you.
3. Choose 11 other bloggers with less than 200 followers and link them in your post.
4. Prepare 11 questions for them.
5. Let them know.

Have a nice day!