Thursday, February 26, 2009

Monday, February 23, 2009

Hurray for A R Rehman

He got the Oscars for Best Song and Best Score. For work which is good but certainly not the best he's ever done. I’m so very happy for the man. Feels like the personal vindication of a starry-eyed young girl who could pick a Rehman tune out of hundreds and be right every time. At a time when Rehman was famous only down south and sneered at or generally ignored by the rest of the country. It feels so bloody great for the man to finally be acknowledged as one of the best musicians of our times. I always thought he was, and now the world acknowledges it with kind. He’s humble and unassuming with it, and so very gracious. Well done, you deserve it. They just had to give it you.

BTW, all you Hinduvta eejits. The man is Muslim. Feel free to stay out of the celebrations.

Friday, February 20, 2009

A Saree Excuse for Summer!

Sales abound and I’ve spent far too much money these last few months so I haven’t got myself anything. Was feeling a little sorry for myself because I will certainly need tops at least to wear to work in summer and then I remembered – I have a whole bunch of pretty cotton and synthetic sarees, some of them new, all of them bright and interesting. I guess I’ll wear them when I want a change from my boring tees. Also, I have some very nice skirts.

I think I’ll go drool over my wardrobe. Certainly did not expect to have sales make me count my blessings!

P.S.
The title is dedicated, with much affection, to Dipali.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

A Wee Affair at the Door

As I got ready to leave for work this morning, The Bheblu babu and his ‘Babata’ (literally “the father” and nobody taught him to call Vicky that) were playing a riotous game with a ball. Something that made the shorter Niyogy laugh like a demented midget and the taller one roll around our living room floor.

They broke off to see me off at the door. Pintsize considered whining but he was in too good a mood to be seriously tempted. So I cuddled him and was about to make a quick exit when I found that two wee hands were holding me tight and a serious pair of eyes were looking at my earrings. Bright yellow bells, and he’s never seen me wear them before . He noticed, looked consideringly at the yellow logo of my JUDE teeshirt and generally looked me over.

The horrible little child notices these things. When I do my hair different. When I wear an uncommon saree. When I wear unknown earrings. Just as I was all set to renounce them to their male bonding, too.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Close Encounters of the Male Kind

Last night, while I waited at the Metro, this young man decided to look me over. Not once, which I could have lived with, not twice, but for minutes while he chatted with his friend. I glared back, not enjoying it in the slightest. He looked away and moved a few feet farther on. All this while listening to Lola vs. Powerman on the iPod.

The train arrived at this point and I got on. It was really crowded and I was trying my best to stay upright without rubbing up against the crotch of the guy behind me. Some minutes into the journey I noticed a woman my age standing nearer the door and shifting uncomfortably. To my indignation, the guy behind her – and standing right in front of me – was the one I’d encountered on the platform. He had been standing at another door altogether when I got into the train, and must have had to run to get in through this door. This time I glared long and openly so that people started to turn to see what I was looking at.

Finally, having glared enough (I thought), I turned away and didn’t give him another look although I could see he was staring at me again.

My station arrived, I got out leisurely at the end of the crowd, well after him. I saw him walk away as I slowly climbed up to the ticket stations but I saw him standing on the other side. I knew he had been traveling alone and if he was waiting for a friend, why look at me? So I went over to the cop sitting nearby and pointed the guy out and explained to the cop that I didn’t need to have him do anything to this person but that he had been hassling me for a while and could he please just take a good look at him.

The man himself was too far to hear what I was saying but he could see me speak to the cop and point at him. The cop was rather nice about it, too, and asked if I wanted to be escorted to the exit. I didn’t but I did walk out very slowly. Luckily, by the time I was outside the man was nowhere to be seen.

All this left me quite a bit on edge while I waited in queue at the rickshaw stand. You know how you get when your skin tingles if a person comes too close? Now imagine my sense of shock when a couple of fingers tapped me on the bare back above my saree blouse! I spun around in shock and saw my ‘attacker’ – all two and a half feet of him safely tucked away in his father’s arms. Grinning at me and ready to make friends. Somehow, it quite restored my equilibrium. All little boys remind me of my own wee one at home, I think.

Friday, February 13, 2009

I feel it in my fingers, I feel it in my tooooooes...

What with all the pinkness in the air and the constant ‘Valentine’s Day’ SMSes sent to me by Vodafone everyday, I’ve been in a valentine mood for a while now.

My first valentine was a card from a cousin who lived abroad. She sent all of us cards, including our great-grandmother, and I had those little cards for the longest time. Pretty little Disney expressions of affection.

A decade later, on 14th Feb, I was telling the love-of-my-life-that-was about a gift a friend of mine was getting. He had a bunch of pale pink roses which he explained was a gift for his mother, and he offered me one. It remains one of my sweetest memories, innocent and fulfilling. The next year, when we were an official couple, he was away from home on work, but he sent me cards, two of them because he couldn’t decide on one. I had a hard time explaining them to my parents but was quite chuffed over it all.

And that’s it. The men I dated thereafter didn’t believe in stuff like that. Heck, the first boyfriend himself dissed the day to his wife last year and I bet he’s totally forgotten the stuff he’d done once.

I don’t think I’m at the roses and candy stage myself any longer although roses and candy are both always very welcome, of course. Nor am I waiting for Vicky to serenade me or sweep me off my feet. I think what I really, really want is lots of bhujiya and a big stack of Mills and Boons. The ultimate in romance.

Come now, ‘fess up, what’s your idea of the perfect romantic hour?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

I'm not feeling particularly broody

...but I have this strong desire to bathe, dress and softly swaddle a wee newborn.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

On Marriage

I was about to turn off the PC and head home but I wanted to file away this comment I just left at a friend's post:

You'll notice, all through the fights and the injured egos, marriage also seems to be about keeping on falling in love. A particularly complicated kind of love, it's true, but love nonetheless.

If that is true and I feel that is true then I just gave myself a lot of food for thought.

What do you think?

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Glancing over the archives

...I came across this post I wrote exactly a year ago. Given my recent angst and our new household setup, I couldn't have read it at a better time.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Found it!

I posted on our Christmas celebrations and promptly lost the post. That is, I couldn't find the slightest trace of it anywhere and put it down to the vagaries of Blogger.

Now I see it was all my fault. I seem to have dated it to Jan 2008. If you're interested in the photos, you can see them here.

Of Sons

The last few months have been extremely difficult for me, personally. The Bhabbles was being a real pain; he wouldn’t come to me, talk to me, sit with me or play with me. It’s not that he was showing any obvious signs of anger and he seemed fine with me going away to office everyday but he kept asking for his father, going so far as to order me away when I tried to do anything for or with him.

I cried a lot, yelled at Vicky and eventually just gave up. No, before you jump to his defence, a little part of it was Vicky’s fault. Given the recent upheavals we both tried to be extra tolerant of toddler bossiness but Vicky was making the cardinal mistake of going along with Bheblu when he was ordering me away. By the time we realized the extent of the damage, it seemed to have been well and truly done. But yes, Vicky didn’t condone this behaviour and once he realized that I was really upset by it, he tried to make things better.

Nothing worked. Things came to a head one night last week when Vicky was feeding him dinner and I finished up in the kitchen and came to sit next to them. The Bhabbles casually leaned over, told me to go away and prepared to carry on his convivial chat with his dad. He wasn’t prepared for Vicky’s sudden and extreme, angry reaction. Vicky just yelled, walked off and refused to speak to him then or later. I tried to pacify him but he wasn’t having any of it. He refused to wish him good night or show him in any way that he had forgiven him. A thoroughly cowed little boy sadly went to bed that night.

I spoke to my mother a little later in the night and indignantly told her that it wasn’t fair of Vicky to tolerate the nonsense for so long and then suddenly blow up like that without explaining to the boy what the problem was. I said, how could he possibly learn a lesson if all his father did was to glower at him from across the room? My mother, to my surprise, was fairly unsympathetic towards either Bheblu or my indignation, and said that Bheblu also needed to learn to understand his father’s moods and expressions. There was nothing I could do at that point any way, so I pretty much left things alone.

Since that night – it’s been the best part of a week now – things have gone back to normal. Bheblu shuttles between us, happy to be with either, asking after the missing parent but totally at his ease without him/her. Whatever was bothering him seems to have sorted itself out.

And then I know, my son is growing up faster than even I can tell. But apparently not too fast for his grandmother to be able to follow, bless them both!

Friday, February 06, 2009

What Would Sue Do

Sue has been finding it difficult, of late, to stick to her own CoC. She knows what is bothering her and she knows what she needs to do about it but she cannot convince herself of the need to do the necessary.

Sue may have figured out a way to guilt herself into it this morning. But Sue hates the world for making her do this.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Working Woman Angst

I’ve been working for nearly three months now and I’m still as unsure as I ever was as to whether this is what I should be doing. Now that Sharabh Niyogy (The Bhablet to you) goes to school I need to wake up early enough to sort out his waterbottle/tiffin and wee bag. Not a long task but I need to be awake and doing it. I need to get his clothes out, have him fed, teeth brushed, clean and ready to be dropped off by 8.15 a.m. I need to find time to eat, bathe, do housework and leave home myself before 10. I get home around 6.15 p.m. and most evenings, we go out somewhere or the other and get home around ten when I drop exhausted into bed. Or potter around trying to get something done and then fall into bed around midnight having achieved exactly nothing.

It sounds like I’ve got huge pockets of time in between when I can get a lot done but I need to cook, clean and regulate their stuff as well as my own and invariably, the cooking is junked in favour of laundry or some other such earth-shatteringly important chore. I’m forgetting to run after paperwork or buy groceries or keep track of what to pick up from where. The two Niyogys both have upset tummies from all the junk they end up eating.

Even I can tell I’m doing this all wrong but I don’t know when to set it right. Weekends we end up outside so I never get things done. Mending is piling up, the ironing too, and drawers are a mess. Dirt is settling down on surfaces and oddments getting lost. I try to send Vicky and Sharabh off so as to have the house to myself but they don’t like losing out on the little time we do have as a family. I am, to use yet another cliché in a blog full of them, at my wits’ end.

I don’t see the point of sitting in an office all day. There is no work that I do that couldn’t be done just as competently by somebody who needs the job more. I hate the idea of my son being shuffled around because I need to “follow” my “dreams”. I dreamt of a home where I lived, not an office far away from it. This agency has been really flexible, and the people in it very welcoming. The work itself is not something I dislike. But I don’t want to stay in an office all day.

What are the pros of a full-time job?
1. Getting out of the house
2. My own income
3. Learning the work
4. Free printing
5. Walking down Park Street every morning
6. The fun of working with my colleagues
7. The feeling of achievement
8. Contacts who know people who get things done
9. Listening to music on the iPod during the commute
10. The prospect of traveling on the job someday

That’s it???

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Third Anniversary Pics




We went out to dinner at Fire and Ice for the third. The first time the day went off well. I guess the third time really is lucky.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Just like Vicky and me, really

When we discuss cars, say, or computers, or even darts.

These mens think they are so funny.

(Click on the photo to be able to read the speech.)

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Another Reason to Really, Really Laugh at NDTV

I've never been a fan as such of Barkha Dutt but time was when I was younger and appreciated the dreams she got my generation of girls to dream. Then I grew up. The Mumbai attacks happened. And for the first time I watched, really watched the Dutt on tv. Watched as an adult and noticed how she bullied her camera guy around. For a while I tried to tell myself that she was probably dealing with an inept rookie and getting impatient but you know, it's easy to spot a bully.

It made sense, all the stories from all the people I know who've ever had to work sharing her space.

And now I see she's a bully elsewhere, too. Like all bullies with half a brain, she's got the people in charge thinking she's a person to support.

I've had a few kids try to bully my son. They soon found out to their discomfiture that I was keeping an eye on their nastiness. Who's going to show NDTV that they are being watched, too, and are headed for trouble? You? As an Indian who is unwilling to give up her right to free speech, I request you to please take the trouble to check out the links in this post. If you're a blogger, state an opinion. Wear the badge (courtesy MayG). Walk the talk as only you can.