Thursday, December 28, 2006

nerve endings

Tangled prepares for other trips. This time with the family. Four days without the internet.
What odds offered?

It is a sad truth that the T keeps attempting weaning herself from the internet and from the chat and other such empty-minded addictions. To her chagrin, she never manages very well. The addictions are noticeably less potent, but they haven't gone, by any means.
Four days without promises a much better chance to study the withdrawal.

In other news, the T has been:
- relearning her organic chemistry
- driving around town and getting lost in the wilderness that lies between Banashankari and Malleshwaram
- playing chaperone to sixteen-year-old again
- wishing for money
Yes. I want money. Poor people need not apply.

The holiday beckons. I go. See me next year. Or on the eve.
How long can I stay away? :)


Can I cry now?

Thursday, December 21, 2006


...forgotten, I.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006


"Who are you?" said the Bun.
Apparently Tangled hadn't been described very well.
Larger than you; and younger than you, the Bun had been told. Not very detailed.
Still, that's hardly an excuse.

assuage hunger.

There was a fog. All pervasive.

"What the fog!", said the boys. They said it at irregular intervals for at least five minutes. It stopped being funny after the first utterance. But when has that ever mattered with boys?

The first night, at dinner, Tangled knocked over her glass of water and inundated the table.
The second day, at breakfast, she jostled her glass and got water on her onion uthappam.
The second day, at lunch, she sloshed water all over the table while pouring it for the others.
The second day, at dinner, she tried to put salt in her soup. The lid and half the contents of the shaker fell in instead.
"At least it wasn't the water", said Wabby.
The third day, at breakfast, she jostled the table with her helmet and spilt the tea, the water and the coconut chutney.
"Don't y'all dare say anything", she said.

At every smoke-stop on the ride there, Tangled tripped over her own feet and almost landed on the highway.
She tripped over her own feet again in the underground Shiva temple.
"At least it wasn't the highway", said Wabby.

imbibe. so there.

"I want a picture of that cockerel", said Tangled. "Look at him, he's magnificent!"
"Did you know that a cock's testicles are below its beak?" said the Bun.

By the side of the road was a tree that was two trees.

"Oh, stop!" said Tangled.
She took pictures while the others honked at the echoes.
"Did you see that?" she asked breathlessly.
No one had.
"Never fear," said Tangled. "Pictures!"

prerogative. and again.

The Bun was worried about her hair. "Feel this part", she said.
"Is it Tangled?" asked the Crapper.
Chortle snort.


"Watch out for the monkey poop on the balcony," said Tangled. "I stepped in it while photographing the sunrise."

(hah, elephant's ass.
no, it's the elephant's asshole.
same thing.
err, not really.
well, same area.)
The rest, extrapolated.

pregnant with meaning.

Red Riding Hood returns.
"You won't be wanting the helmet, then?" said the Crapper.
"Probably, but I want something with a hood then", said Tangled.
"Oh, wait," she continued, "This has a hood already."
"Moron of the first order", said the Crapper.
"What?" said Tangled. "I can't hear a word you're saying."

Another rest stop.
"Parts of my body don't like me", said Tangled.
"Well, there's nothing we can do to make them like each other", said the Crapper.
"Oh, they like each other fine. It's me they don't like."
"TBisms", said the Crapper.

"I'm a late bloomer," said Tangled.
There was a moment of winking and blinking, and the Bun smiled all over her face.
"I'm not saying anything," said the Crapper.

"I confuse", said T.

The first day, the gang was to leave the bachelor terrace-pad at four in the a.m.
The three of them; the Bun, Tangled and the Crapper; retired to the room at half-past eleven.
The T and the Crapper then spent most of the night on the terrace talking. With some methi bread to mix things up a bit.
They slept at three. The Crapper was listening to Linkin Park.
"Umfwff, too loud, stop singing," mumbled T.
At three thirty the alarm went off. Tangled reached over and jolted the Crapper awake by jabbing him in the knee.
"Uhhh", he said.
"Shall we extend", she said.
"Half an hour", he said.
"Four o'clock", she said.

number of times phrases related to bowel movements were shared: err.
so there were many. i didn't count.
would have needed more than the fingers on both hands.

The next morning the gang was to leave the hotel room to go to Hampi at seven.
"Wake us up at six for the plock," Tangled was told.
She woke up in darkness and realized it was half past four.
Sigh, she said, and wandered around the room. She sat down and wrote some really bad poetry before deciding to write letters instead.
"I write this sitting across thresholds", she wrote. "Thresholds of bathrooms in new hotels at half-past four in the morning while all others sleep."
She took a break to wake the others up.
"Half an hour," they mumbled. "Seven o'clock," they messaged.
She went out on the balcony and photographed the sunrise. And stepped in the monkey poop, but y'all know that part already.
"The story so far," she wrote.
When room service arrived at seven, she'd only gotten as far as Saturday morning.
"Letters fuel my rambling", she said.
They left Hospet for Hampi at ten.
"Told you so", said the Bun.

Another rest stop.
"Bleh bleh nonsense glah gluck cluck," said Tangled.
"What?" said everyone else.
"Nothing, never mind, it's just- I'm just-"
"You confuse?" smiled the Crapper.
"Huh." sniffed Tangled.

They flew under diamonds in velvet. Brought the tears to Tangled's eyes.
Then again, perhaps that was because of the fly which flew in.
Who can tell?

The Bun and Tangled were talking. Tangled did the Valleyspeak.
"Oh, stop talking like my cousin," said the Bun.
"Where's your cousin from?" asked Tangled.
"Philly", said the Bun.
"My cousin's from Atlanta, and technically she should have that Southern drawl, but she doesn't," said Tangled.
"But Atlanta's up north!" said the Bun.
"Er, no. Atlanta's in Georgia!", said Tangled vehemently. "It's a southern state! Full of rednecks and lynching of niggers! and I am going to shut up now."
"Oh I confused Atlanta with Alaska," said the Bun.
Tangled laughed. So did the Crapper.
"You spilt tea on your pants, and didn't even notice," said the Crapper.
"Half the self-confidence comes from nonchalance," said Tangled.
(All right. She only wishes she said it. What she actually said was, "I just pretended not to notice." See? The nonchalance line was much better.)
"You should change your nickname from Tangled to Spilt," said Wabby.

The Bun sat down at the table and shuddered, "Why do men like going around stinking of sweat?"
"Who?" said Wabby.
"That guy in there," said the Bun, pointing into the Coffee Day.
"You know," said Tangled, "Maybe it isn't that they like it. Maybe men just don't realize the extent of their own, er... unpleasant odours."
After a beat, two masculine arms were raised and two armpits discreetly sniffed.
sigh. boys. :)

"Have you seen---? Have you read---? Have you heard---?" said Tangled.
"Tchuh," said Tangled, "why do I even bother."

Tangled bought some Cadbury's Gems. She got four different colours.
"Look!", she said, "I've never gotten all four of different colours before!"
The Crapper got two blue Gems.
"See?" said Tangled, "they're always doubles."
"Maybe they're from Dublin," said the Crapper.
He turned to Wabby and added, "Your blog or mine?"
Huh. Too late.

How appropriate. :)

And now, one I didn't take.
(With apologies to the Crapper.
You take one hell of a picture, honey,
but I gave you
more than twenty four hours.
After that it's free-for-all.)

"Why, I've done such a lot of insanely funny stuff this trip", said Tangled. "I must write it out." Out came book and pen. Away flew book into the centre of the highway.
One for the road.

"You're being kidnapped", he'd said.
I wish I'd told him to do it and welcome.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

thankful for the excuse

Sometimes a tag is a nice way to get started after a slump. Is it an excuse? Assuredly.
I have to reveal five things people don't know about me. Hmmm. Haven't I done this already?

Five things.

1. I am irresistibly attracted to signs that say BOOK SALE UP TO 80% OFF and CHINA BAZAAR BUY ITEMS FOR RS. 100 ONLY and BARGAIN MART and CLEARANCE SALE and... er. You get the picture?

2. I love taking a day pass on the bus and wandering around town.

3. I hate being yelled at.

4. I hate twilight.

5. For therapy I clean my room.

Not exactly a happy camper, are we? Not till Saturday, anyhow. Then we shall see.

Oh, and NEW POEM.

Monday, December 11, 2006

stopped the writing

Ecstasy is all you need
Living in the big machine
Oh, you're so vain
Now your world is way too fast
Nothing's real and nothing lasts
And I'm aware
I'm in love but you don't care

Turn your anger into lust
I'm still here but you don't trust at all
And I'll be waiting

Love and sex and loneliness
Take what's yours and leave the rest so I'll survive
God it's good to be alive

And I'm torn in pieces
I'm blind and waiting for
My heart is reeling
I'm blind and waiting for you

Still in love with all your sins
Where you stop and I'll begin
And I'll
I'll be waiting
Living like a house on fire
What you fear is your desire
It's hard to deal
I still love the way you feel

Now this angry little girl
Drowning in this petty world
And I'm
Who you run to
Swallow all your bitter pills
That's what makes you beautiful
You're all or not
I don't need what you ain't got

And I'm torn in pieces
I'm blind and waiting for
My heart is reeling
I'm blind and waiting for you
I'm still here and waiting for you
And I can't believe it's coming true
I'm blind and waiting for you

Goo Goo Dolls - Big Machine

Friday, December 8, 2006

waiting for kumar


all the dreams are dead, and the words won't come.
but friends are beautiful people.

Monday, December 4, 2006

worried about other people

And my life is one big performance.
I say the things that make the memorable moments; I do the things that make the poignant gestures. I've told you this before, haven't I? Yes, but then again, these words only settled in the head in this particular moment.
I am a performer. I take the cues and I play the parts. I am a million people in my own head, and some at a time outside. I am anything you want me to be, one by one, changeable; because I can be anything I want to be, anytime, anywhere, anyhow. I use words and smiles and laughs to make you think what you want to think and what I want you to think. And the reason it works is because I believe. At any instant, I believe, with heart and soul, in the part I'm playing. Every part. What else makes a good performance?

The point is this: at the end of the act, the belief is gone.
What will I do when it happens this time?

Sunday, December 3, 2006

girl, third part

On that road, with my eyes open for the first time, I noticed things I hadn't before. Women tend to walk through life selectively blinkered, I think; because never before had I actually seen men stare. Men whistling, ogling, leering, yes, all of those. But this matter-of-fact checking out? Not before.
Nearly every man who passed by did it - young, old; with friends, with girlfriend, with wife, with children, alone. It seemed so casual - a flicker of the eyes, no more; in the midst of conversations and silences, a quick inventory: face, breasts, legs, breasts; all right, done, let's move on.
It took me at least twenty minutes to realize it was happening, and I think one of the first conscious thoughts was, Exactly how blind have I been? The next thought was, And this is why they say all men are animals? And I found bubbling up in me an unholy desire to burst out laughing. Was that wrong?

My memories of the rest of the evening are marked by little moments lit up in fluorescent shop-front light.
I remember the way I stood in the beginning. Arrogance. I am going to lounge, and I am going to watch, and I have every right to do both. I remember thinking it was going to be easy.
I remember staring into the Bata store I was standing in front of, watching people go in and out, letting my mind drift until I abruptly realized I was turning myself off again. I remember how hard it was to remind myself to be there.
I remember the two people with the cameras.
I remember the boy in the blue shirt who stared back at me all the way down Brigade Road, and I remember how flustered he was each time he turned back to see me still staring at him.
I remember all the looks - startlement, curiosity, discomfort. I remember the man who returned for a second look.

I remember walking down the road so all of us could stand closer together. I remember ending up next to my sister. I remember not thinking about all the men staring at her exposed midriff. I remember the man who stopped, the one who got up right in her face, the one who made me leave my post on the rail and abandon my pretence of isolation and go stand by her side.

I remember walking down to Mota Royal Arcade. The fire at Pizza Corner. The man who jerked his elbow into each of the girls in front of me till my sister, in front of me, told him to "Hutt". I remember thinking, She's too young and reckless to be here.

I remember Mota Arcade.
Every moment of it.
Every man who stared. All the people who didn't give us a second glance. All the women who walked past, with girl friend and boyfriend and husband and family. They never saw us. I wondered if I would have. The one girl who stopped, took a letter, read it, and joined us. My sister. My niece. Me.
Anticlimax. Grand finale.
All the eyes.

Friday, December 1, 2006

dinner date

I cannot live with you,
It would be life
And life is over there
Behind the shelf

And slowly, with steps tentative and strangely unwilling, I open my head to the poetry.
When all of them love it, there must be something I'm missing.