Sunday, April 29, 2007


where are we supposed to go from here? emergency? it isn't an emergency? casualty? perhaps, but only of my own clumsiness. and how long do i have to wait here among all these people whose blood is all on the outside instead of where self-respecting blood should be?
wheelchair, downstairs, elevator to the OPD. forms to fill, and cards to fill, down stairs, down stairs, but Father, I am not 23 yet, and who's listening?
doctor, it has been two hours since I got here and an hour since the X-ray and the upstairs downstairs, is there nobody with this girl, and where is the man with the plaster cast? i have eaten my stale idlis in my hot sambhar while Father stood by smelling of smoke and am i surprised? and where? where is my bandage?
i have read all the charts, sister, and i have redesigned the administrative block, and i am dying for a bit of construction paper and a pair of scissors and could you get me some tape with that? and i watch you wrap those instruments in cloth and i ask, sister, are those to be boiled and you nod yes; i doubt you understood me, but you smile prettily, congratulations.
and sister, sister, o Nurse? see, i can see that run in your stocking.

it's up to three hours now, doctor, close to three and a half, and why must i pay an entire month's salary for a cast in fibreglass that will not even give me a canvas on which to get people to spout drivel to show their love for me, no substitutes i bet you get a hefty commission doctor, but so it goes so it goes, and i spend half my Sunday being ignored in a hospital and the other half being ignored at home
(no, i will not apologize.)
and Coventry is not such a bad place to be if you have the internet and a phone.

Really, it's not.
So. Someone call me, please?

Saturday, April 28, 2007

nothing could come between us

A couple of weeks ago, the newest neighbours were locked out of their apartment without a key between them. So it was that in the middle of the night we had an extension cord plugged into our hall point and the sound of drilling above our heads. Today they came over to charge their new digital camera because.. okay, I'm not precisely sure, because I was asleep in the afternoon, but when I awoke there was a camera plugged into the computer.
Also, the long sibling and I were just invited to a DVD party at the neighbour's next week. Monday, to be exact. I was also invited to bring along a boyfriend. Sob, if only!
Herewith is an open invitation to any young gentlemen who would not be averse to spending an evening with me, my sister, the neighbour and the neighbour's husband. Your primary role will be to tilt the gender balance closer to the middle and provide company to the last mentioned.
Call me if interested. :D

I like people.
They make life infinitely worth it.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

building thoughts

Architecture is perhaps the most unexpectedly rewarding mistake I ever made.
I could imagine a life doing something else, struggling less, worrying less, panicking less. Perhaps I could. I could imagine a life where I entered college fresh from school to do something I actually had a chance of being good at - literature, mathematics, engineering, law, journalism. Perhaps I could.
People who knew T in school always said, architecture? in the tones of people watching chickens swimming. T was talented in school, yes. She was smart, and she loved to learn, and her English was the stuff of legend. But I preen, and I wanted to talk of architecture.

I could imagine some other field where I would learn more about life, and people, and words that sell ideas. I could imagine a field where I talk to a person in Hindi, another in Kannada and a third in English; all within the same four walls; as mediator and arbitrator and umpire. I could imagine some other world where I would be responsible to each and every one of those people, the one held accountable, the one in charge...and still, in all probability, the one who gets the least return for her investment.
Perhaps I could, but I doubt it.
I wonder how many other fields require you to be at once responsible to everybody. And I mean everybody. To the client - to get the job done on time, within budget, as per specification. To the contractor, the carpenter, the plumber, the electrician, the mason - to get them their drawings, their instructions, their money.
To yourself - because that's the point of design, isn't it?
I fear I will never be a great architect. I fear I lack the vision, the skill, the willingness to spend three days on a single room. I have dreams of buildings that I cannot draw and I talk about spaces that I cannot see, and it breaks my heart. I have ideas that I do not put down on paper because I am too lazy, too afraid of the work any design entails.
I see people around me who talk of architecture the way I talk of writing, and I wish for the least fraction of that passion.
If I could design the way I write, I'd be a happier architect. Not better, not necessarily. Just...happier. I'd be happy just to try.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

love letters, dammit

I first watched the movie Love Letters around seven years ago, more or less. I found it during one of the aimless channel-flipping exercises - the ones that end in you stopping for five minutes at something that seems mildly interesting; and then ending up being completely hooked even though you've missed the beginning and you have no idea what you've missed so far and you have to pick things up as you go along.
That happened to me with Finder's Fee, too. :) Surprises are better.

Now I never knew what the movie was called, and I had no idea who the actors were, and the movie more or less drifted away from the instant recall part of my brain. There was one scene from the movie, though, that I incorporated into my list of near-perfect celluloid moments - a scene where our (for lack of a better word) hero walks away from our (ditto) heroine, forever, you think, forever and ever no! but then, he stops at the doorway, turns around and comes right back and kisses her, oh.
I remembered that scene. I still remember it, though the background is white and the other people in the room are grey and the edges are fuzzy and our hero looks more like James Woods than Steven Weber. Laura Linney's still Laura Linney, though.

Love Letters started out as a play. A play by A.R. Gurney that was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. There's a bit of trivia for you! Put it in your pipe and smoke it. I found this out when I went to watch it. Love Letters, by Evam. Here's the synopsis, for people who care:

    The play centers on two characters, Melissa Gardner and Andrew Makepiece Ladd III. Using the epistolary form sometimes found in novels, they sit side by side at tables and read the correspondence - in which they discuss their hopes and ambitions, dreams and disappointments, and victories and defeats - that has passed between them throughout their lives. It is only at the end that they both realize they were really love letters at their core.
It was halfway through the first half that I realized that I knew this script. I knew these words, I knew this story. And Boom, like that, I remembered.
Love Letters is better as a play.
Without attendant explanation with other characters and detail and setting. Because in essence the story is about letters more than about people. A love story about Love Letters. How could I not love it?
One can see how much better it can be, though. One can imagine the actors doing less, moving less, distracting less. One of the things I loved most about the play was the expression on the face of the person reading the letter as the person who wrote it told the audience what was in it. What else is in a letter but the hope that the person on the other side reads it as you want them to read it, sees the things you've sent them, packaged in your words, your heart to theirs?
Perhaps I love the story so much because letters have always been my way of letting people into my heart.
But then who writes letters any more anyway?

(First begun 22/2/07 8:48 AM. As a letter to someone. How perfectly ironic.)

Monday, April 9, 2007



Wednesday, April 4, 2007

placebo post

Last Monday morning, someone told me, "Find a way to celebrate."
So T went to office early. This was exciting because she had practically no work to do and absolutely no company at all. Hence the first couple of hours at the office were spent flopping like a fish and sending emails. Probably bad ideas, in retrospect.
And after that was lunch.

Finally, at half-past three, she decided enough was enough, and it was time to go out looking for adventure! She told the boss she needed to buy some things. And she took her helmet and her keys and her Levi Strauss Signature® gift coupons, and got out into the bright sunshine.
Barely ten minutes into the ride, T found adventure staring her in the face. Well, not precisely in the face. In fact, she came upon an entire crowd of people outside some school, all staring, in the most congenial manner, up into a tree.
So she stopped and took a picture of all of them. She refused on principle, however, to look up into the actual tree, which she regrets purely on a satisfying-curiosity basis. Besides, nothing would look quite as stupid as T with her helmet off and her mouth open and her eyes looking at a tree. Nothing she cares to discuss.

T drove across to Residency Road, to the Levi Strauss Signature® Store at Mota Royal Arcade. She went the long way around, and found parking in a very coincidental manner, with a vehicle being removed just as she passed by etcetera etcetera. She walked down, occasionally bumping into people with her helmet, meeting many many juniors from college, getting stared at by random people...the usual.
When she got to the store, she found it full of people. This was surprising, because, well, let's say you'd know if you went to the store. A moment later, however, she spotted a tell-tale blue gift coupon in the hands of each of those other young persons. Every fest this year, apparently! :)
This thrilled her so much that she left the store laughing and had to go back to pick up her forgotten helmet.

T followed up this adventurous outing, the mad shopping spree, with a post-lunch 'taco' at Pecos. With a few smoking boys, some clairvoyant waiters, and a couple of rude customers thrown in for free. And some music.