Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Edible Quotient

There are two dishes in front of me: one contains loads of peas in it and the other has a lot of capsicum. The peas taste great but the capsicum seems uncooked. I inquire about it. I am told the extent to which capsicum, in general, is cooked so that it becomes edible is much less than what peas need. I realize though both are vegetables but they essentially have a different ‘edible’ quotient. Likewise, I feel we all have our own ‘edible’ quotient. Nature ‘cooks’ some of us more and some less only to connect us to the best we can be. Its a waste of time to look at others and be judgmental about oneself.


Wednesday, November 30, 2011


One was sitting on the bed. The other was on a chair. The one on the bed was virtually retouching a photograph on his laptop while the one on the chair was admiring the same but the untouched version of it in his own computer. Once the one on the bed was done he said, “See how awesome it looks now!”

“But that’s not what it naturally was.”

“Okay! But I’ll get more likes in FB than your natural one would.” He mocked.

This was not the first time he saw his friend re-touch a photograph. It made the one sitting on the chair wonder:

Most of the time his friend’s action was a reaction to his presumption of other’s judgment and an imaginary conclusion of it being embarrassing. At every step he had this pervert urge to re-touch his natural self to become more acceptable. But, isn't embracing the imperfection within one a part of being oneself too? And isn't the will-to-re-touch something natural itself a disgusting way to puncture one’s self-esteem?

“I’ll put the photograph just the way I took it. More than anyone else’s like, I love it that way.” The one on the chair said.


Friday, October 7, 2011

Boiling Milk

I’m in the kitchen. I put the bowl filled with milk on the oven. I turn on the burner. I wait for the milk to start boiling. I hum a song as well. I hear my mobile phone ring out loud. I realize it’s in the bedroom. I scamper out to attend the call. I come back in the kitchen after some time. I see the boiling milk has spilled all over the place. It’s a mess.

I was committed to boil the milk. Thus, it was important for me to ignore the call. I didn't.

Now all I can do is clean up. But will I be able to retain the spilled milk? Some of it at least?

I sigh.


Sunday, September 18, 2011


All my life I have seen rockets embellishing the night sky during a festival. But the following observation and the subsequent realization happened for the first time during the recent Ganesh Chaturthi.

A guy placed a rocket inside a glass bottle and lit the tiny tail branching out from its chest. A moment later the rocket scooted high up in the air where it expressed itself via a delightful explosion.

Even a rocket remains bottled, to start with, before the necessary fire triggers its journey high up in the sky where it realizes it’s true and irrevocable potential.


Tuesday, August 30, 2011


When I saw my friend getting frustrated while trying to download something which he had been eyeing for a long time, I queried about it.

“There are still no seeds and peers. I will have to delete this torrent. Waste!" He was about to delete it after keeping the torrent for over a month when I requested him to give it another fortnight. He agreed since it anyway wasn't eating much of his hard disk space. On the fourteenth day the download was successful.

One can dream as much as one wants to but alongside, it is also important to believe in the fact that a trigger to its fruition is only a moment away. And till that moment happens one should never pause or delete the torrent of a Dream.


Saturday, July 16, 2011

At The Party

Few days back I was at this party with friends. We were having a good time till they decided to drink and dance. I, being myself, chose to enjoy the sight from a distance. A nearby table, where each of us had kept our mobile phones and wallets, caught my attention. Soon, I found myself arranging the mobile phones randomly. Then I noticed a pattern. Here’s what the arrangement was like:

Micromax Q50

Dell XCD28

Blackberry Pearl

HTC Desire

Apple iPhone

Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 Mini Pro

Samsung Galaxy pop

Samsung Guru Dual

The sequence was an amusing one because it occurred to me the list was tantamount to man’s evolution through time. A journey from simplicity to simplicity via complexity.


Sunday, June 26, 2011

Video Streaming

My internet connection boasts of a good speed. Okay, usually it’s better than good. And a video in any streaming website loads quickly.

But last night for some reason (unknown to me) the internet speed was like that of man’s evolution through time. I was dead bored. It was only an hour later the video I was so desperate to see had fully loaded. One hour compared to the normal half a minute! I was irritated because I had to watch few more parts of the same video. Talk about long nights!

And in the humdrum of a slow internet connection I realized: I’d actually waited for all the videos to load because I wanted to see them. If the Wait had not happened, the Want would have been a traveller in the land of excuses.


Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Tourist

During a casual walk down a famous street in arguably one of the most coveted city of India I overheard couple of tourists praising a particular aspect of that city. And it was the same aspect which made the native disown the city many a times, complain about it insatiably and at times simply ignore it under the garb of a helpless acceptance.

Walking ahead of the two tourists I wondered how the same thing appealed to some who probably saw and lived it for a day while it disgusted the ones who witnessed and faced it every day. Subsequently it dawned on me that sometimes it’s better to take a breather and ‘become’ a tourist to our own problems, relationships, dilemmas and our own being. It surely helps us grow some more (and much needed) green grass on our emotional pasture.

PS: How to ‘become’ that tourist? That, I am afraid, can’t be generalised.


Sunday, April 10, 2011

Auto Rickshaw

Last night I boarded an auto rickshaw without really knowing the exact location of the place I was heading to.

I did enjoy the three-wheeler's ride but I also had an eye on the fare meter all the while and was aware how swiftly it was ascending. Finally when I decided to step down somewhere close to the intended place the meter was showing a herculean figure.

I realized when we get into any relationship there’s always a fare meter running somewhere within. The more time you give to the relationship, the more the meter’s figure. And then if one decides to step out of the relationship at random or deliberately or even against will, the fare shown by the meter of the heart, almost always, goes well beyond one’s emotional budget at that point of time.

I concluded enjoying the ride is as important as keeping an eye on the fare meter so that in case something happens and one needs to move out, one should at least be able to handle it.


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Happy Women's Day

Following is a short write-up of mine that was published couple of years back in the book 'Woman: Many Hues, Many Shades' by Satjit Wadva. Hope you will like it. Comments are welcome and because its not the exact version, my sincere apologies for the mistakes/glitches, if any.

Thank you! :)

The Hand That Rocked My Cradle Fuels My World

I don’t remember it and I can’t forget it either; I mean, her first touch.

Though I arrived in this world without any luggage of language but I don’t know how (does anyone?) I pronounced the word ma all by myself. On one hand I am still oblivious to the exact moment when that mysterious word escaped me for the first time and on the other, the sublime emotional resonance of her first touch upon my soft, ignorant and naive skin has nested – like my own conscience – within me forever. And whenever I feel the resonance of it choreographing my soul, birth seems like a euphoric swing between physical heaven and mental bliss.

The first time she took me in her hands and pressed me softly against her bosom I was subliminally connected to my identity: I was a man. The first time she offered me her milk, it transpired a realization in me: I needed a woman to provide me with the strength that epitomises a man. The first time she prepared Cerelac for me I foresaw: I’ll need a woman for my growth. The first time she took my hands and feet onto hers and taught me how to walk, my subconscious conjured: I needed a woman for the direction that eventually decides the difference between a man and a human. The first time she scolded me when I picked up foul language in primary school I learnt: I needed a woman to punctuate me. The first time she helped me with my bath I understood: I needed a woman to rinse me of all my dirt. But the incident that helped me realize the real value of a mother – probably the most significant manifestation of womanhood – happened one night when she lit a candle during a power cut.

The stubborn wind, continuously peeping in through the open windows, denied the candle flame a stasis. As a reflex, my mother placed both her hands around the flame. Within seconds it calmed the flickering flame down lighting the area properly and also those dark corners of ignorance within me, once and for all. I realized had it not been for her caring and comforting presence the flame of my existence would have flickered relentlessly under the influence of the wind of delusions and temptations. And perhaps extinguish too, way before the true potential was achieved.

My mother always looks like a mother to me. Rarely have I seen her in any other attire than a sari with a dot of vermilion between her eye brows as well as a streak of it on the centre parting of her hair. To go with it are a set of white and red bangles – typical of married Bengali women – on both hands and a gold chain – her mangalsutra – around the neck. There was a time when I thought without these one is not a proper mother!

I remember I had once asked her why she had to hit me every time I did something wrong.

“You could have explained me verbally also!”

“A stick is also a pertinent expression of love.” She said and conveniently changed the topic. Looking at her face I could very well judge it must have been tougher for her than it was for me.

Her perceptions of things are unique. And whenever I think about them at length they seem gravid with keys to some archaic locks.

For example, once a communal riot had broke out in her home town. Curfew was declared and army deployed. At midnight my mother – then a small child – suddenly was woken up by my worried-looking grandmother and asked to run out of the house. As she followed her outside, my mother enquired what the matter was.

“There is an earthquake!” My grandmother almost screamed.

“Is it Hindu or Muslim?” My mother shot back.

Whenever we get time to discuss various things, the session leaves me, more often than not, in a pensive state; embellishing my outlook with maturity all the time. Going by my mother’s confession, she wanted to study further and thereby make her own mark. But the kind of societal quicksand she belonged to trained her emotionally from her childhood to live her life within the shadow of a husband. Talent, desire, passion and the zeal to make an identity and design a personal independence – she was made to believe – doesn’t matter after a point in a woman’s life. So much so, that in the end she started believing in the faux belief.

“But how do you carry on without ever feeling frustrated?”

“A woman is tailor-made to absorb pain, right from her puberty.” She smiled and continued, “Actually a woman lies somewhere in the middle of the equilibrium between man and nature. So whatever we do or happens to us influences everything from individuals to society; nolens volens. Thus we are the ones for whom rules are made.”

My mother worships daily. And when she distributes the Prasad her eyes seem a vial filled to the brim with faith. I think this is her defence mechanism against the vagaries of life. I had also asked her what she thought about God.

“He can’t only be an idol?” I had remarked.

“God is nothing but our intentions.” She replied leaving me alone to ponder over it.

She is always surrounded with an aura that is a stentorian pronunciation of the substance that a genuine woman is made of. I have even seen one of my father’s office colleagues touching her feet! I didn’t understand that at first but as I grew up and women – in various avatars – touched my life there were instances when I tried to find my mother in them. I wasn’t successful every time but whenever I was, I felt honoured to bow down.

The most shocking thing about my mother is she does the same thing every day. And the most surprising thing is she does it with a smile. An entire life in the well of monotony! As if a mother never lives for herself. Every action, urge, wish in her is because of a surreal reaction to her family’s needs and wants.

“Were you always like this, living for others?”


“Then is that the change a woman goes through when she becomes a mother?”

“A woman connects with the woman inside when she becomes a mother.” She had a twinkle in her eyes when she said it. I believed it was a tear but she termed it pride.

I think the greatest blessing for any flame is the hand that guards it from flickering. And how the flame burns depends, to an extent, upon the warmth of the hand. Yet sometimes we take things so much for granted that we tend to ignore the very basic element that helps – at different stages of our existence – cement the bricks of sanity together to build a healthy wall of living for us.

It’s not that I have seen my mother play only a mother. Like the different seasons she too has played various roles exclusive of each other. As if within her resides the climate of creation. And in doing so she has allowed us to reap the benefits of all the different facets sown within her.

As I continue to see her getting caressed by time, I have confessed to myself that a woman – doesn’t matter the role – is, above all, the climax of a man’s life.