Sunday, February 20, 2011

9 pm portrait

a destroyed chocolate cake
biscuits of no revered make

an unmade bed
sheets well-fed

that's how my sunday looks like
when the weekend runs out of pike

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

When it is dark outside, the windows flaunt reflections of the inside..

Two windows in front of me stand,
framed, silent and bland.

Peeks a tall chimney from one,
two dry branches with no sun.

I see a shelf full of books,
some for 'em cooks;

A little bottle of rye,
around the corner of my eye.

But then it's all me,
two feet next to my tea.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Political culture among non-politicians.

Politics (from Greek πολιτικος, [politikós]: «citizen», «civilian»), is a process by which groups of people make collective decisions.

I am not going to harp on the things that you already know, accommodating for your intellectuality in Indian politics. I will not take any names (or numbers) in this essay.

Re: Cynicism.

Politics and politicians are viewed with certain degree of disdain across the lands. Common opinion is that the kurta-clads are scoundrels and talking about them or their acts is a futile act immersed in a form of grandeur that would make you be called an arm-chair intellectual. Sure, but let us address the futility of the issue a little later. For the moment, let us recollect a time when politics was not a bad word. People of my generation probably cannot. If we revisit the Indian political leaders in the 1940's or 50's.. and our opinion about them.. ah wait, the problem with starting this argument is that it sounds like a cliche even before one starts waxing one's words. What has changed over 70 years has been addressed in many scholarly books and opinion columns that we do not like to read. (Unfortunately) either due to differences in preset opinions, or scarcity of time. But it is essential to note that politics was not always about politicians. Politics was about civilians.

There are two classes of politics - (1) the well-known party politics based on the electoral voting system, and (2) the obscure-but-valid-term citizen politics, i.e. role of citizens. Needless to say, one is more dominant than the other, but both are equally existent, in my opinion. The reason the former is more influential (obviously) is because there is a physical system that exists in the country namely the Constitution, the different administrative bodies and government frameworks - to take care of the latter. Civilian participation is mostly voting, filing petitions, the recently popular RTIs, living-room discussions, media critique and sparse online fora. And paying taxes. Both these political classes are correlated. But you already knew that.

I often wondered if the disjoint and the discontinuous cluster of events that contributes to the latter class of politics is the reason for its impotency. Up until a few years back, these packets of public opinion/query existed in diaspora. Trite as it might sound, but the advent of communication technology in the last few years accounted for a lot of populous movements, though mostly concentrated on entertainment and personal promotion. However, this technology could be the percolating pathway that unites these disjointed clusters, for there are many well-meaning educated people who in spite of the cynicism, harbour goodwill for the nation. Humour me, for I am a hopeful romantic. =)

The problem I feel is that we were preceded by (or are a part of) a generation of common men and women who witnessed a dramatic decline in the quality of political leadership. One of the primary sources of educated spirited leaders during independence period was the middle class. As the 70's-80's approached, this demographic focused on more personal economic welfare than that of the society, thereby fragmenting communal ideologies. I guess this is also the period when the middle class began consider themselves as the benefactors of the political class, and something away from the system. The decline of this section of population in politics was promptly replaced by more street-smart albeit (even) less altruistic forces. Historians would have references to Congress party here, esp. Mrs. Gandhi Sr., but I feel this very historical demonising/dietification of political leaders serves as a crutch for us to ignore politics as either dirty or elitist.

As a young man in your teenage years, you develop a certain understanding of society and a sense of responsibility - a simple pervasive fervour born out of conscience and historical rhetoric. But as years roll by, depending on your geographical positioning, you either grow cynical of the same, or variedly helpless, as you realise the distance and disproportion between an individual self and the communal environment, namely your country. Mid-twenties is an age when the self and the ego begin to part ways in a man. (The self consists of various streams, social conscience being one of them. Ego however deals with a unstemming purportful diligence towards attaining the good life as per popular models.) In a desire to make oneself someone of a consequence among a billion, one loses respect for the social conscience. The foot soldier does not fight for the system (formerly known as nation in his head) anymore, but begins to think he has to fight against/through it. As one of my friends remarked, the idealist becomes a realist.

The so-called decline in the overall quality of political leadership, it must be noted, coincided with the demise of the common middle-class middle-aged man's social idealism.

"Does this mean jump into politics?" This is a wrong question to ask, coz we were never originally supposed to be out of politics. "Does this mean I need to run for elections next time?" Not necessarily.

I refuse to believe that there are no good people in politics. Or that there are no administrators within the system who want to help the junta, given the leeway. There are several unfortunate circumstances in which the current political system works, and if you have read any newspaper in the last 10-20 years, you know why. But the political machinery works in that way, coz todate the citizen politics was never organized enough to question it. Neither did it have a national platform to serve as a reflection of collective public opinion. (Media, was supposed to be this very thing, but that is another story.) What the good seeds in the government need, is a better and transparent system where their honesty comes forth. And this can be largely aided by having an active second class of politics, which is politically educated enough, to demand better.

It is no news that an individual's identity today is both physical and virtual. And soon, what one does on the internet, would be as pertinent as what he/she does on the streets. (Online govt. offices, national IDs and NRI voting are just the beginning of a larger changing face of democracy, I feel.) There is a difference between having an odd status update and having a culture for political discussion. The stigma that needs addressing first, is that speaking about politics is not futile. Neither is it superfluous. It is our forgotten responsibility, if anything.

Surely after twenty years of witnessing the political circus, one should be able to have eye to sift the bullshit out from the shit. Without falling prey to agents of polarising opinion, one could have a well-rounded opinion on current affairs by having a communal discussion with an educational pursuit. Gray versus black/white. Not back-slapping or huddles of like-minded commentators demonising X or Y, but a balanced debate on policy which includes self-critique. Diversity in opinion demands for factually relevant points to be expressed, which would propel the discussion away from personal issues and more towards the ideological arguments, which is what at the end of the day politics is about. About ideologies of citizens, not politicians.

Unless we take politics seriously, we are not a serious society. And if not, we do not deserve serious leaders.

P.S. This turned out longer than I thought. =p

Thursday, December 16, 2010


a long time ago,
today was the future;

i thought it would be with less work.

Friday, December 03, 2010

these days

things in my head
cannot make it
to the keyboard

Sunday, November 07, 2010

jazzing up the darkness

".. jazz clubs are where old people go on saturday nights.."

Monday, October 25, 2010


watched the movie over the weekend. among other things, learnt that the ruby bhatia song was a rip-off! the first 20 secs of the trailer, dummy!

why ruby, why? why did nt you just say so, oye?

p.s. the movie itself is a very imaginative biopic. tad long, but props for the acting and the treatment. but, long.

Monday, September 27, 2010

time (monday mornings)

the body has caught up
the mind is still forgetful

realisation is such a drag

Friday, September 03, 2010

brandi carlile

Monday, August 09, 2010

piano man

Sunday, August 01, 2010

discovering things that can be done with one hand

viva la revolucion! =)

Monday, July 26, 2010

willingness to change

like a peddler
i walk around
hawking my wares
each morning
i wait
for the day to run scarce

when we live through days, soon enough they turn into months or years and eventually this leads to a stage when we seem different than what we remember ourselves to be. depending on whether we like it or not, we label it either evolution or change (a more colloquial expression for the former would be development).

in certain young communities that i have been social in, change in an individual is said to be brought about due to circumstances or certain docile aspects in one's personality - a pitiable thing in the general conscious. change here, would be a sign of weakness with regards to the ego. for it is in some way represented as a compromise of individuality to a larger social entity or responsibility. a negative but existent trait.

in some other communities, change bears no such great commentary on one's personality and in fact is merely a burdensome exercise which would warrant a sacrifice of heavenly proportions of one's social lineage. its absence is a commonplace phenomenon like sloth or similar mild human features. also, age comes in for a quick rescue in most cases.. and to change would be nearly impossible, owing to the mental exhaustion involved. a fairly superfluous exercise.

development on the other hand is (puzzlingly) sketched to be something completely different. often termed well-read or.. curiously enough, well-paid.. it shares very little vocabulary with change. painted in glorious colours of maturity, it is usually lit up as a tribute to success. and wisdom. a more forgiving differential from what one starts off as - a twerp. a fairly positive step up.

so how much of change is an infringement of a person's identity and how less of it is a natural or warranted development? considering the total ambiguous nature of identity.. a fine line.. a broad spectrum?

when there is a hushing sigh of resignation for the change in a person, is it just a derivative of the negative opinion existing of an unnecessary difference? or the misunderstood face of an evolved man? why the resistance to change?

adult life brings along a few new things.. takes away some as well. but choice is not one of them. but to choose, one needs to be willing.

Friday, July 23, 2010

you could click the perfect picture

.. you could write the perfect song. have the perfect weekend.. or go one-up.. win the almighty cup.


with a clear mind, and a sated heart.. i enquire what is it that awaits yonder. i do not particularly rationalize happy endings. i find them, premature in reality. for unlike say (most) movies, life has a longer reeltime. and accommodates no sequels. presumably.

is it just about the day then? quam minime credula postero (putting minimal trust in the future). #horace

i have been having my perfect weekend since months now. a year even, perhaps. and now, i look at my watch and wonder when is it gonna tick out.. when will the credits stop rolling? which of course speaks of the skeptical realist that one has become, that which does not believe in the immortality of the enduring positive vibe around, or is dispassionately insecure of some harbinger.

possibly anything that i'd say beyond this, would make me seem like a madman; perhaps not a deterrent, but could certainly undermine the primary thought.

happiness = state of mind. agreed. and sautéed.

so how long can a state of mind exist in a consistent and unaltered fashion. how long can a man be happy?

the permanence of change denies any perpetual existence. of form, or figments. in the civil world that we have created around us, there is very little that i find labeled the ultimate. that is, not yielding to loopy sensations and charitable market-idolism of the term nirvana, there is not very much that i find particularly pinnacle-worthy to be pinned so. small hills, no mountains; all around just blind men, without curtains.

or may be i am just not there yet.

i often tail it down to one's ambition. or the lack of. we all have our perfect pictures in our heads. the versions that we carry might not be the same, usually never are.

so what happens when you have clicked the perfect picture?

there will be no distance left to run anymore. there will be that, and then the rest



Thursday, July 22, 2010

this one

.. just makes you wanna grab a camera and click some.

The First Days of Spring Official Trailer from charlie fink on Vimeo.

magnifique. noah and the whale.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


distant times
forgotten thoughts
a walk
to where words seem scars

Friday, May 28, 2010

everyone makes mistakes in life

picture from here.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

the sun's out..

.. the grass is green, the flowers yellow and the sky behind painted perfect blue; all the colours seem right. the air around is warm enough to carry the right tune along. in light and in fact.. i find myself grabbing onto images of days of my life - though regular and existent, i fear their fleet. as man gets older, much i like do everyday, a sense of permanence keeps fading in and out of consciousness. as aware as i am, of the fact that nothing lasts.. i am hit by something like a mere stroke of greed, an anxious moment of selfishness that if the world permits.. for me, to have this to be held in more than just my present.. i would like that to be had.

sometimes i wish i were more than just a man. i wish i had more than just wishes.

and words.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

(500) days of summer

upfront - i liked this movie. it's a romcom, yes.. but even as a part of me is apologetic that it is, i liked it. it's one of better postmodern movies that you ll see and acknowledge. it's indie.. it's mushy, but then again, it has a great color scheme. plus lovely camera work. it's a movie that will make you smile, for you know it's true. it's like a lil cute cousin who is too adorable for you not to pinch her cheeks. that's right.

p.s. i think i ll need to go watch 'die hard' tomorrow, munching on a big mac with nachos and soda, to get the testosterone levels back up. and *burp*

Saturday, March 27, 2010

jack + matt

jack spencer. i liked the "native soil" collection the most from the lot.


Sunday, March 21, 2010

the snow's melting