Booker Winner!

When "The White Tiger" won the booker, I thought Naipaul's view about the end of literature, that literature has served its purpose and was to get some other form of replacement, had come true. The first fault was the writer himself. Bald and distraught looking he looked more like a writer of Harold Robin's virtue. What's wrong with Amitav Ghosh's "The Sea of Poppies". The golden era of indelible books had passed by...now it's all "The Inheritance of Shit", "Coloured Tigers" winning the esteemed award..and to add to the insult Indians winning it. There was a time when the committee had to sit for almost a week to decide whether to give "Shame" the prize or "The Life and Times of Michael K"...of course the committee made the wrong decision, but here you couldn't hold the committee responsible for the lack of competition. Deciding the booker prize would never have been this easy, give it to anyone; and no one would question the decision as all the shortlists are equally bad. Booker is slowly going the Nobel way......you have to give it to people every yesr...choose the countries and give it to anyone that seems likely in any sense. This was India's turn...3 years later I'm thinking of writing "The Inheritance of White Tigers". Whoever liked both the books please dig two graveyards..

At one end I see a small kid who is sitting on some roadside pavement and picking up stones, little ones; and then immediately throwing them away. He doesn't look up, he just doesn't. I watch him, sucking at my cigarette butt, waiting why he's so involved. There is nothing that disturbs him; a bike passing by fails to touch his attention. And there's nobody around. No father, no fucking mother. No one. Who's this little guy? What's he doing? How can picking those littlest of stones keep him absorbed? And why is nobody around?
I hear voices go into my ears. They seem to be coming from so near, I think whether I have said something. Someone shouts from behind me.
I look back, there's no one; I look at the child, he's gone. His focus, his activity, his finger marks on the mud remain; and I stop seeing!
Where's everyone, and it's then that I collapse. Someone tells me I was looking here and there when I fell. I think it was my dad who told me that. I ask him whether he had watched me fall. He says he had. I don't believe it. Who was that child? I can still remember his face, the complete absence of everyone except us two, and endless voices. I need to sleep more, I guess.

Delhi Delights!

I had the natural advantage. With a gifted eye for cleavages, which aren't captured in normal life and are momentary, I landed in a place of abundance; things were just rosy. I had come to Delhi for training, but professional occurings never consume my curiosity and I sat through the three day training like a bad Picasso painting. Once out, cleavages from all four sides at one single moment caught my eye more than at least 10 times while the walk from office to the guest house, the distance being 2 kms. This is something of a rarity in Hyderabad. Delhi girls wear sexy clothes; and it's very alarming and disturbing for a person from Hyderabad; used to search for either low waist trousers slipping a bit further down and exposing some sexy lingerie or skirts flying a bit above the comfortable zone. The search itself was an effort and would commit a whole day at the right places to get one successful hunt. In Hyderabad low waist trousers, the girls wear, are normally ones that start just below their breasts; so you could imagine what we went through; hence Delhi's surprise. But then there was too little time I had gone there for, most of which was consumed in the training; after we were left and I began the walk to my guest house, my head would spin so fast I had no idea what and where I was looking at. Things just appeared too fast, for a short time, in huge numbers, and disappeared. I was left so frustrated and envious I puked when I reached my room. My digestion was in tatters. My face turned into one that of a serial killer. I had brought two beautiful books to read; they lay forgotten, as if the awards they had won had been stripped off their merit. I tried to get drunk, but the agony of not being able to remember all I had seen didn't let me get drunk. I thought of Hyderabad and hated the thought. Three days passed and I had become monster looking. The president of the company on the last day said something about my appearance, about how wrong it is to look like this or some such shit; I wasn't listening at all. My mind was somewhere else, and it was refusing to return. On my flight back I bid an emotional farewell to Delhi and cursed my destination. As soon as I landed I went unconscious, and was brought home godknowshow. I lay in a hospital for 3 days and the dreams never stopped. Then eventually the serenity pervaded my mind and gave me the calm I used to hold before. I didn't even realise I had become sick. Fuck cleavages, I thought. It's my home, this Hyderabad. Delhi was just too fast, but going nowhere; too smart, for nothing; sexy, but impotently so; full of people but empty within; it disgusts me now to think of it. Cleavages, ya we look for it but love it when we find it. There, we shouldn't because there is nothing else to look for. It's a capitalistic capital.

The Quandary

These days are passing along in a trespassing like daydream. I feel not at all in control of everything happening around me. Things, both living and non-living, seem to have assumed a posture of undignified absence. I look about and everything changes to the shape of a large middle finger. I look depressed, but no one's watching. I go to my job. I have hardly any idea what I do there. I come home, there's no one waiting. When I'm drunk, I feel I'm someone else. There is an urge to undo all; but confrontation with the urge releases a frightening thin line of fear, which silences me for a while. Nothing seems clear. When it rains I'm afraid I would drown in 2cm deep water. Does fear needs an excuse too?
Last night I met a psychologist. Not formally, he was just a friend. I told him whatever could be compressed inside the areas of language. He managed to look intelligent, but said he couldn't help in any way at all. I was reading a book, 10 hours later, when a perpetual deja vu took me into a state of mind I have had hard time coming to grips with. What state am I in?
I don't have answers. I'm numb.

Most of the days these days pass away in a light momentary flick of the eye; it seems as if their passing away takes me by surprise once in a while and I start struggling for the days...and months I have just missed.......there is neither any respite in memory too....it's just too blank to be referred to. Is this what dying is? It ain't but probably most nearly so.
There is nothing to report but just a few words one has learnt to put in the middle of sentences; beautiful sentences reporting nothing, carrying no meaning, without scope and eventually purposeless. I was talking about this state of intense druggedness with one of my friends whose parents had long ago forgotten to name him. He said it happened to him too, time to time. Sometimes, he said, he thought everything around him seemed irrelevant and unchallenging. The way he spoke about it was so clear a description of what I had been feeling that I almost wished to hug him; then he looked at a dog sitting serenely a few meters away from us; he looked at the dog and said " Last week I hit him with a large stone, and look it's still alive". Of course there wasn't any point in what he said. I just managed to look very calm and observant. After that I asked him what he did when this fit of emptyness hit him. He asked what could he do. After a few minutes, feeling a bit relieved to be away from his nameless presence, I bought a cigarette and pulled in some smoke: my lungs thanked me for the relief I gave them. I started to walk towards home, if there is any such thing. At least I knew where I had to move once the world had relieved me of its services for the day. What when I lose that sense too one day? Nowhere to go back to! Iy could be exciting in a vague sort of way. Am I awaiting that moment? I can't say no.

Solitude!

On a fake mattress, sitting with all the collected hopes and fantasies of one lifetime, with a mind full of stories, stories of things magically happening and changing the face of whatever HAS BEEN....., one sits and prays the mattress would take off. It doesn't. One waits. He isn't impatient; he is content waiting. And within his contentment is the ghost who knows and shouts "nothing's gonna happen". The mattress never takes off. Eventually......only eventually does the man abandons the desire for magic and looks about himself. He sees the leftover of defeats and abrupt ends ( things cut short). He sees incompletion everywhere. He tries to clear certain bits, but it's exhaustion he feels. So he sits and breathes heavily. The mattress bears his weight, to which he's thankful. He looks about again and sighs......then he goes to sleeps....

Serious Campaigns!

When one hasn't yet stopped wondering how a thin and weak looking black guy will rule the most poweful nation in the world, that a friend of mine insidiously informed me last evening that he was no longer a virgin. It felt like the betrayel of a lifetime. I was in the extremeties of shock. I asked him the details; he feigned a casual shrug, meaning there was something hidden. The smile in his face seemed to say he had some hidden knowledge no one had ever acknowledged, and with which he was extremely content and a man apart. He implied that but both of us knew it was bullshit. Both of us knew he had no hidden knowledge and had plainly gone to a whore. Before giving any details he started explaining it was the right thing to do, it was a mere need exchange, morality wasn't involved; and if it was then he he didn't give damn. He did what he wanted and paid the person what she wanted in exchange. The passion from him was unasked. I was just interested in knowing where he had gone and how was the entire experience. He said he was given a complimentary bear after the ACT. I asked whether it was frightening, he answered it was. But the desire defeated it of course. I asked how the girl was; he said she was good. I asked whther they spoke anything. He said hardly anything of consequence. Consequence!!!
The wword coming out of him, the emphasis on "consequence", was so laughable that I had a hard time looking at his face for the next half an hour. Would he go again?
He said he didn't have money. He asked me whether I would be interested?
I said HARDLY!

"I will fucking kill that bastard", shouted my friend named Papi, who had been drunk now for two long hours, punching his fist at the frightened air. He had shouted at me. Unfortunately I wasn't drunk. I tried to analyse the cause of his anger. At the very basic level he was angry because I had made an unquantifiable mockery of his favourite Telugu hero ( through whom I actually wanted to disgrace the whole Telugu film industry); and the other parameter was the sudden decay of our relationship, which had started without alerting either of us; the decay had now grown so deep there was an evident effort from his side to block the hole expanding inside both of us. But I somehow seemed to him uninterested, and that caused fury. The disdain in him was so huge he could have killed me there without guilt catching up with hin for at least the next two weeks or so....
Then came the other turn. Next to our table, a couple of drunk youngsters, probably bored with each other and looking out for excitement, approached Papi. They tried to talk friendly at first and then turned abusive. They shoved and I stood up. I tried to get them apart. But the fight had started now. No one was listening to anyone. And everyone was shouting. And Papi was now completely entangled in their arms. I stood up and tried to split them apart. It was tougher then I expected. I forced myself further, and suddenly out of nowhere a punch, fast and accurate, landed on my face. I fell down cursing myself why I hadn't gotten drunk. Sensibility sometimes could be killing with its deep sense of identifying what's embarrassing and what's not. Drunk, I would have felt and remembered nothing. Luckily no serious injury had occured to my face. I was ashamed for two weeks and eventually forgot the defeat in the hands of two drunk youths, that is if it was they who had punched me. Papi surprisingly took me home and fought on bravely. What's the purpose of this narrative shit?
No idea....absolutely none. I just watched the movie "Munich", it's great.

Goa's Molestation

The trip to Goa in my final semster of MBA was going fine until just ten hours before it was about to end. We had missed the DCH site where Amir, Saif and Akshay( in the movie) sit and talk shit about the beauty of Goa. We were going there just for the fuck of it. The road was immensely curvy, and a smooth drizzle was flying into our faces. The stage was set: a slight stupidity was the only requirement. And then out of nowhere I delivered. Not watching the road, on that disgusting Activa, with a tall shirtless HE MAN behind me, I stared at a probably Israeli girl, whose head was shaven. And then a sharp turn came. Before I could see the road again, I had fallen so badly I thought I had broken my leg. The girl showed some disappointment, at what had happened, with a mere shake of head. What are these Israelies doing in Goa, trying to kill people like us. The trip ended with me limping home, sunburnt, hating beaches and bikinis forever. Deepak who was with me there had a stomach upset during the return, so he passed the better part of the return train journey enclosed in the stinking washroom. Krishna( HE MAN) was the only person satisfied with the trip. Everyone else was tired from the trip, and of each other. There is something about these tourist places, an absence of certain sensibility or let's just say a a character. They seem like celebrity, shaped by the public and eventually packed into annonymity. Goa will cease to be a place people would want to go to in time to come. It's full of dark people trying to speak in unhearable english; trying to sell drugs and prostitues. It's full of people from other countries acting as if they are genuinely interested in Yoga and music. The most beautiful thing eventually is the fakery at display. Everything else apart the beaches, though dirty, were good. I would have drowned; I went so deep inside.