Wednesday, March 22, 2017

The Independent Princess

Meet the independent princess. 

She likes being indulged. She wants a fairy tale romance. Yes she desires a Prince.

But she is not spoilt. She is pragmatic, sensible even. And yes she knows her life is great even without him.

She likes to cook for her man. But is scared to admit it. She might be considered a door mat. But then what about the times she cooks for her children, her friends, her parents, her colleagues? Why is she only judged for caring for that one person? 

She wants a magical proposal. Planned to perfection. With a rock. The whole deal. But then she also likes the fuss her girlfriends make on her birthday. Or how her mother still bakes her favorite cake for her. And you know what, she takes twice the effort to do thoughtful things for them all, the boyfriend, the child, the parents, the friends, the sisters, the brothers, hell even the in-laws. Why is she then only accused of being a complying girlfriend? 

She loves frilly frocks, stilettos and dangling earrings. She also sports a dragon tattoo (and not a butterfly one). She still sees a rainbow in wonder. And also wonders about effect of climate change on rains. She likes Barbies (blasphemy!) and admires Malala. She wonders why both cant co-exist in her daughter's world?

She is whimsical but has will power

She is dainty but deadly

She is diet conscious but cheats on her diet (occasionally)

She is a drama queen but a jack of all trades

She daydreams but has no nightmares

She can be a nightmare (but that's when she is not allowed to cheat on her diet)

She earns, she saves but she also splurges when she caves.

She impulse shops online, but likes to be taken shopping by her man

She likes receiving flowers in office but whatsapp messages during office hours annoy her 

She adores tiara and she participates in triathlons (sometime both at the same time)

She cries while watching rom-coms but keeps her wide open during The Exorcist

She breaks glass ceilings but covets Cinderella's glass slippers

She gets nail art done but ruins it by doing art with her toddlers 

She worships fashion but she cherishes her PJs (and her boxers even more) 

She enjoys doors being held for her, but she can kick open any door she wants

She believes in magic, but has no qualms creating it for herself

She is a conundrum. A mystery of sorts. Feminists hate her. Romantics mock her. She can't pick a side. She wants a man, does not need one. She relishes a whirlwind romance, but that does not define her. 

Yes she is a Princess. She is an independent, career minded, self-financed, home-owner. So if she wants to be a Princess, full power to her! 

Friday, March 10, 2017

Aapke Baad- Ek kavita

Jis subah aapko yaad nahin karenge
Jis shaam aapka naam nahin lenge
Us din se hoga yeh ahsaas
Ki aap nahin hain ab humare aas paas

Lekin tab tak kya karein yeh dil?
Kaise savrein? Kaise sambhlein?
Kaise yaad karein woh pyaar bhari nazarein?
Kaise bhoolayen woh guhm bharein nagme?

Humari rooh mein aap ho samaye
Humare zehn mein ho sada shamil
Har ek nagme mein hai aapki yaad
Har ek saans karti hai yeh farman

Ki aapki kahani na kabhi ho khatam
Aapki ghazalon mein doobe har mehfil
Aapki muskarahaton ka no ho koi qatil

Pur ab hum toot se gayein hain
Ab toh ijazzat de do
Chalo jaon, aur le jaon
Apni kahaniyan, apni ghazalein, apni muskurahatein

Chod do humein tanha
Aapke bina jeene ki aadat dalne do
Aakhir, saayon ke saath nahin guzarti yeh zindagi

Monday, February 13, 2017

Life, I don't have time for you

I was told everything is transient
I know nothing lasts forever
But I still try and keep
Memories close to my chest
And regrets in my back pocket

I fish these out regularly
And then I reminisce and smile
Or remember and weep
I sometimes get the blues
And other times red in anger

While my memories and regrets take over
Life takes a backseat
It waits patiently for me to take notice
To have a conversation, to share a laugh

But where do I have the time?
There is so much to mull over
So many anecdotes to recollect
Few heartbreaks to get over

And then tragedy strikes
I stop dead in my track
I take stock

I store the memories in a corner
I discard the regrets in the bin
I slowly pick up the threads of conversation with Life
It responds hesitatingly
After awhile I shake its hands confidently, "Can we spend more time together?", I ask
With a hint of a smile, Life replies "I have been waiting for you to say that for years"

Friday, January 13, 2017

Follow your heart

It's a slippery slope
It's a messy design
A convoluted journey
And sometimes there are no signs

But follow your heart
Oh follow your heart
To find that spark
Just follow your heart

Your coffers may dwindle
You'll become fan of minimalist
But your soul will soar
And life will turn out fantastic

So just smile your way to following your heart

It's a mixed bag
Walking on clouds one day
Living in grunge the next
The music is sometimes soft
But sure never fades
You waltz one day
And tango the next

So just dance your way to following your heart

You are able with paint with no brush
Write your own life story
Weave a future with no fabric
Compose a never-heard melody

So just sing your way to following you heart

But it takes courage
It needs patience
Quitting is not an option
Keep moving the only solution

So just work your way to following you heart

It will never be smooth sailing
Self-doubt will be your companion
You may wake up in cold sweats
But will go to sleep dreaming

So just dream your way to following you heart

To find that spark
Just follow your heart

p.s. if you don't trust me, trust HIM (and no I don't mean God)

Friday, January 6, 2017

What crappy 2016 taught this

1) We live in a digital bubble

Our friends on social media are similar to us, their friends are similar to them and thus making our immediate and extended social circle in the digital world not too different from us. Thus we believe what is being shared, liked, discussed on our Facebook posts and Twitter feeds to be the way the rest of the world should think, worse behave. Hence Trump winning the elections came as a shock to so many of us. We voiced our support for Hillary unequivocally, expressed aghast on Trump's opinions loudly and rallied our views on social media (without any voting power whatsoever) truly believing it would make a difference. 

We forgot to look at the real world i.e. 90% of people who live outside our digital bubble whose issues are different from ours, whose views are radically apart, the ones who voted Trump to power. We could not fathom this turn of events and many of us are still reeling from the after shocks.

We all need to understand that there is a world outside the digital bubble we've built for ourselves and our friends and their friend's friends don't make up the all of the real world. 

2) Sharing on social does jackshit

Changing your profile picture to represent LBGT colors, adding the national flag to your DP, posting and re-posting pictures and news articles about Paris attacks and Syrian refugees does not make you an instrument of change. You are a sympathetic observer at best, an armchair activist at worst. 

I am not dissing social media or its users. I am leveraging it too to share my views. But time comes when we need to step up to take action and move out of the Facebook walls. 

What did any of us actually DO to affect change on miseries that 2016 bought on the world? Jackshit! 

Instead of having our fingers fly on our keyboard to lambaste the next atrocity, we can keep away our devices and using our hands and heads to affect change. It can be as simple as volunteering at a soup kitchen or a random act of kindness towards a stranger. Hell, start by being kinder to the Uber the driver who turns up late or show more compassion to your household help.

3) Believing everything we read on our smart phones is not smart

For any world event from Brexit in Europe to Demonitization in India, there are not only several views, but multiple 'facts'. It's almost impossible to distinguish what is accurate and what is misrepresentation. 

The problem of 'fake news' is ironically real and even Mark Zuckerberg is finding it hard to deal with it. Fake news leads to real profits. And these fake new sites stand a chance to make lots of money by providing false information and using channels like Facebook to make it go viral. While both Facebook and Google have taken steps to block many such sites, there are still several corrective measures needed before this issue goes away. 

So next time you want to forward that video, post that saucy news article, stop and have a think. Who exactly is benefiting from your this? Besides making you sound like a pseudo intellectual and providing social currency to trade for likes and comments, you are really doing anything.

4) We live in terrible times

Which show no signs of abating. Why would anyone drive a truck through a Christmas market in Berlin? Or open fire in a night club in Orlando? What sick perverse people and organizations think and act in such heinous manner? I cannot for the life of me understand. But what is clear is that this is the world we are living in. And while we can't change things at a macro level and find solutions to Syrian refuge crisis or ISIS, we can do much more on a micro level.

We can exhibit more tolerance. Tolerance towards to people who look different from us, who talk a strange language, who pray to different God. We need to start seeing more oneness in each other irrespective of race, religion, color, caste or what us urban elite are usually guilty of, class. 

We can teach our children to rise above these differences, to stand up to any form of bullying, to become color blind, religion agnostic and class tolerant. We need to deliberately curb any ill feelings while having an open conversation with our kids, so they are better prepared to face the challenging times we live in today.

5) We gotta have faith, faith , faith

In the eternal words (though taken a bit out of context here) of the legendary George Michael who 2016 took from us along with several other stalwarts, we gotta have faith.

Faith that despite the craziness around us, we can still rely on each other. Isn't the sharing economy of Airbnb stays and Uber pool rides testament to that?  

Faith that we all can modify a bit if not change completely in these trying times. 

Faith that we are just one tiny spoke in the hub and we need to each do our part to keep things moving.

Faith that there is a beautiful world outside social media which we need to relate to more. With that am getting off my iPad and heading out for a morning walk.

Happy new year folks! 

Friday, December 30, 2016

Just Read

Read a book
Any book
Every book
Just pick a book and read

Read for a lark
Read to smile
Read to cry
Read to think

Read to question
Read to challenge 
Read to debate 
Read to change 

Read for pleasure
Read through pain
Read to hide
Read to escape

Read to change your world
Read in lieu of travel
Read to step into the future
Read to walk back through history 

Read a classic
Read a short story
Hell, read a comic
Just pick a book and read

Read a book
Any book
Every book
Just pick a book and read

Saturday, October 8, 2016

This was not her story

It was ordinary for her. It was exceptional for him. She compared it to the many before. He had not much precedence. She forgot about it soon after it was over. For him the feeling lingered for weeks. She went about life like nothing had happened. While he was bewitched and lived under a spell.

She often wondered if romance resided only in insipid rom-coms where the bad boy magically altered his callous ways for his lady love. But enter the next handsome charmer with a winning smile and she was bowled over. She was attracted to the cocky ones. With the instant chemistry and unbridled passion. The lust and romance. The intensity and drama. She then tried harder. She went further. Thinking that would make them stay. She even bent over. Though that hurt like hell. But it always ended the same way. In heartbreak. With them forgetting her almost as easily as they were attracted to her. She could not break the pattern. Nice bored her. Sweetness tired her. She liked it spicy. Much like biting into a chilli padi. The burnt crimson should be a deterrent. But the sensation on her tongue was intoxicating, getting her to throw caution to winds yet again. 

Sitting in an idyllic beach bar, she twisted her straw mindlessly. He watched her from a distance. Awe stuck at her nonchalant manner. He did not believe she would be interested but he could not resist sending her a drink. She turned to look at him and mouthed a thank you. Her lips were wonderfully shaped, like if she kissed an envelope the pink lipstick would make a perfect kiss shape. He gingerly gestured to sit on the stool next to hers. She shrugged like she couldn't care either way. He sat down, more confidently than he felt.

He was drawn. She was not altogether repulsed, like his ex-wife used to be. He took that as a positive sign and asked her to dance. She laughed almost rolling her eyes but his vulnerability stopped her. He seemed un-chilly like. Almost chocolaty.

After a few dances, she agreed to go for walk on the beach. They sat on the soft silvery sand. He talked. She pretended to listen. He was enthralled. She was vaguely curious. He leaned forward, anticipating the head tilt, so he could kiss her. Instead she stretched her body backwards lifting her head towards the starlit sky. Suddenly she faced him, came forward and placed those perfect lips on his. A kiss that was hungry yet sensuous. He kissed her slowly, enthralled. Then she pulled back. He held her hand and they sat silently listening to the night sounds. She stood up and said she had a wonderful evening.  

They exchanged numbers. He was already planning the next date. She was already forgetting this one. This was not her story. All she wanted was to become immortal in someone else's.