Posts tagged ‘personal stuff’

in which i am point-y

1.  Calcutta is dirty, smelly, humid and utterly charming. Like one of those large licky, copiously shedding dogs that sort of knock you over and then stand over you with their mouths open and tongues dripping, simultaneously stinking at you and licking you with great affection. I wouldn’t want to live with one, but meeting one  for a few days is one of life’s major joys. Mine anyway. I dunno if it was the company (sadly I cannot link you to the two other people I really wanted to put here because they both think blogs are peculiar and meant for other people),  or the big ancient buildings, or the metro, or the food, but I loved Calcutta. I wish I’d had more time for book-shopping and jazz-listening. And LP hunting. Calcutta struck me as just the kind of wonderfully junky place where there’d still be piles of LPs.

2. It’s official: Bangalore is what causes my permanent cold. All of last week I was an easy-breathing, hankyless person. Not one sneeze. I felt like someone else.

3. So you know how awesome it is that wordpress lets you know intimate details of your visitors’ private lives like where they got their link to you from, and what precise combination of words fed into a search engine led them here? Today (ok, not today today. This post has been languishing in my drafts folder for a while, waiting for me to draw it a suitable animal) I logged in to find that not one but two (two! two!) people got here by using for their search that delicate, evocative phrase “donkey sex lion”.  I hooted hysterically for 10 minutes. I now want to cry, as I imagine all my fond literary aspirations being trampled on by a reputation for bestiality.

4. You know how some people talk about the book that changed their life? Then there are the people who’ve read more than one book.

Books, I have always found, are sociable people, and like company. The important thing is to read and to be reading – a continuous thing, implying that one has read in the past, is doing so nowish, and will continue to do so in the future.

Compare swimming. One doesn’t swim one breadth and declare: I have swum. It changed my life. One swims many breadths, many lengths, perhaps a lake, and says ‘I swim’ – or if you are desperately enthusiastic, ‘I like swimming.’

5. I love listening to Nick Drake on rainy days.

6. When we were small,  my sister and I went to a million music classes. We kept making excuses to stop taking them, on account of how they seemed (at the time) a terrible waste of our evenings. Plus I hated having a high, weedy voice. When I talk, it’s sort of inaudible and nondescript, but when I sing I attract bats. I wanted (still do) a deep bass full of fire and brimstone, something awe-inspiring and magnificent. As ever, my desire for grandiosity was matched only by my complete lack of skill. My singing voice was, I felt, more suited to a rabbit. I’m not sure what my sister’s hang-up was, since her voice was distinctly deeper than mine (but then the squirrel on the tree outside my window has been known to have a deeper singing voice than mine) but clearly she too had some vast singing shame, and we sulked in wondrous togetherness. It was the one thing we always agreed upon. Our lack of enthusiasm must’ve been contagious, because sometimes the teachers also made similar excuses and never came back.

And sometimes, our (oh so cruel!) parents would line us up and ask us to sing at random relatives.  We’d valiantly not look at each other, and start off ok – both of us have a respectable sense of tune. A line later (before the song could go high and my falsetto could sneak out) — and in my memories our embarrassment threshold was so neatly aligned that we never did need to look at each other for confirmation — we would just stop. And one of us would say very firmly, ignoring my parents’ fond promptings: paadiyaach. (“I’ve sung”. Past perfect, indicating that there would be no more singing in the future. We hoped.)

Apparently adulthood has made me no better at ending things.


August 25, 2010 at 4:22 pm Leave a comment

newness: in which I try my hand at honesty

First honest thing: I find wordpress a bit intimidating. I think it’s the sleekness. Blogger was sort of cheerful and goofy. It had low expectations and didn’t seem to mind whatever I said, even if it was awful. WordPress’s grey posting page has a steely, business-like look about it.


Honest thing number 2: I wanted to hate Brandon Sanderson with a deep and dreadful hatred for being the non-Robert- Jordan person to write the end of the Wheel of Time series. But really, in some very specific ways, I think Brandon Sanderson may just be a better writer than poor Robert Jordan. Not a better plotter, and not a better world-builder, and not even necessarily better with character (more on this in a minute), but in sheer ability to make the now huge and cumbersome plots actually move. Remember that thing called urgency that Robert Jordan decided to forgo way back about Book 8 or thereabouts in favour of more Sea Folk customs and more low-necked green dresses slashed with yellow? Brandon Sanderson is all jumpy with urgency. And I have to sort of cheer him on for it. He clearly wants to get to the Last Battle (hint to BS: maybe spreading it into three books isn’t the best way to accomplish this?) and start the big bloodshed that some of us have been anticipating for almost a decade.

Other Wheel of Time related, possibly less true things:

1. Poor poor newly-pointless Mat, who has been my favourite person in the books all along. Give him a plot someone. Even a tiny little battle would do.  And stop trying to write him like the Wheel of Time’s sub-par version of Tehol Beddict. He used to have his own personality, remember? Ditto Thom.

2. Egwene finally justifies her existence! *drumroll* Even if all her adversaries did seem to just crumble without her having to try too hard. Still. I liked the way her civil disobedience thing played out.

3. If Perrin and Faile don’t die in the last book I am going to be very very upset. They are stupid and whiny and turn plot-gold into straw without even trying.

4. I’m not yet done digesting the many and strange metamorphoses of Rand al’ Thor. I am suspending judgement until the last book.

5. I can finally say I like Nynaeve. She has always been one of those borderline good characters for me. Sometimes she was so sneaky and clever and yelled satisfyingly at characters I disliked. The rest of the time she sort of collapsed internally and based her entire self-esteem on ugly clothes and strange power games and blamed every single person for her own stupidity. And then Robert Jordan would have some random person yell “Brave-as-a-Lion Nynaeve” and expect me to ignore the evidence of the last 300 pages.

I am happy to finally have her sensible and efficient and doing actual things.

5. The entire Aviendha plot-line annoyed me. She always comes off looking interesting from other people’s points-of-view, but her own is a bit boring. This is true for many of Robert Jordan’s women – their actions are admirable, but he doesn’t seem able to correctly describe the internal processes that end up with them doing those actions. Which makes me think that perhaps Sanderson’s nicest contribution to the series is this: he focuses on the actions of people like Egwene and Nynaeve (and even Tuon), and leaves some of their internal monologuing offscreen, for the reader to fill in.

Short version: I want to read more Wheel of Time. And I think I like this new format.

October 30, 2009 at 3:38 pm 3 comments


Notice how there would be no whinging without hinging? I have a gross new shit-coloured door. It clashes with every single thing in my room, in addition to everything outside it. Clashing, thereby, with a universal set. My door is clashing with my universe. Clashing, smashing, clanging, hanging. 

And it has allies. 
Accompanying the door are the huge pits that are the remains of some nice shady trees (and the foundation to some new hell), and a tooth-gnashingly loud drill that smashes my brains to smithereens every time I dare have a thought. 

I also have shiny white floor tiles that my hostel seems to have stolen from either a) a hospital or b) a bathroom. Either way its moderately reprehensible of them. 
I tried to lighten things up a bit:
But you can tell it’s intimidated by the door. Piteous. Piping. Pipsqueak. Pathetic. Piqued. Pachyderm.
I hope the drill and the door die a thousand gruesome deaths, but mainly I wish they’d just go away. Especially the drill. 

January 4, 2009 at 4:24 pm 1 comment

tagged by benny

Ok. So some of this will be in pictures, partly because thousand words blah blah blah, but mainly because its more entertaining for me this way.

1. If your lover betrayed you, what would your reaction be?
Complete erasure. Or so I like to think.

2. If you can have a dream come true, what would it be?
Being able to fly. I tend to have a lot of falling down dreams. They would be improved if my dream self knew it could save itself without waking me up.

3. Whose butt would you like to kick?
If I’m only allowed one I need some time to decide.

4. What would you do with a billion dollars?
Be indecisive. As with the one butt. Act furtive. Make a big shiny pile and hoard it.

5. Will you fall in love with your best friend?
No idea.

6. Which is more blessed: loving someone or being loved by someone?
Loving someone, probably, but it might depend on who’s doing the blessing.

7. How long would you wait for someone you loved?
I might wait a fair amount of time if I had other things to do. Lots of exciting other things to do.

8. If the person you secretly like is attached, what will you do?
Go far away and then sulk and wish I were less wimpy.

9. If you could root for one social cause, what would it be?

10. What takes you down the fastest?

11. Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?
BLINDgeranium. Some things, I really don’t want to see.

12. What’s your fear?
Lots. Illnesses, being run-over, cockroaches, big fires, some heights, large amounts of people, big red chillies, giant Sringeri fish, and many other things. If I were not an atheist, I would be a very god-fearing person.

13. What kind of person do you think the person who tagged you is?
She’s a mushroom! (This is for tagging weird fruit and calling them me :P)

14. Would you rather be single and rich or married and poor?
Single and rich. Easy peasy.

15. What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
Wonder if I can go back to sleep.

16. If you fall in love with two people simultaneously who will you pick?
Will they also love me? If yes, then I shall taunt them with impossible tasks involving dragons, sorcery, deep chasms and other dangers too terrible to mention here. Then my hoarded gold and I shall live happily ever after.

17. Would you give all in a relationship?
Who knows?

18. Would you forgive and forget someone no matter how horrible a thing he has done?
Depends on what they did. Probably not if it involved mass murder.

19. Do you prefer being single or in a relationship?

20. List of people to tag:
sanchopanza, ., d, roh, A.

November 19, 2008 at 6:49 pm 5 comments

one of my turns

Or not.

Some days, moving looks too hard to try.
And thinking gives you a headache.
All the last straws weigh you down.
Like the chicken whose nose
Has been shoved into the ground
Whose beak has been rubbed in the mud
Til it thinks that the mud is the sole,
The only world it has.

Some days I’m a chicken.

But warm-blooded.
A donkey. Or a mule.
A beast of self-imposed burdens.
Some of which are purely imaginary.

And sometimes by lunch-time –
When the mud begins to get to me,
Making me sneeze ands sneeze and sneeze –
I may even look at the sky.

October 31, 2008 at 1:20 pm 2 comments


I have had a recurring headache for three days now.
It makes life very unpleasant.
Saridon provides a spurious and fake relief that lasts a couple of hours and is then replaced by the usual pounding when I have finally managed to drag myself to dissertation-land.

A few more days of this nonsense and beheading will begin to seem like sweet sweet release.

Of course, when I do go on my rare and brief visits to dissertation-land I am quite sure I can hear the Red Queen yelling “Off with her head,” in the background. So it should come as no surprise to the universe if I am found headless.

I can only hope my afterlife holds a horse.
The Headless Geranium Horseperson, striking terror into the hearts of the innocent, the Headless Horsanium Scourge of the Land.

I can’t wait.

September 11, 2008 at 3:57 pm 1 comment

Gerilla the Hun

When I was younger
– well, even four years ago –
I never wrote my name on books.
It seemed sacrilegious somehow.
Dirty. Smearing my garbage
on someone else.

These days, half the fun of a new book
is writing my name on it.

Its quite barbaric. Possessive.
I fear I have become a vile person.

April 16, 2008 at 2:07 am 6 comments

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