Friday, February 27, 2009

Land down under

In the middle of all serious discussions about life and womanhood... i decided to take a break and listen to some music... then in a fit of utter randomness decided to play this silly facebook game... the note on facebook has utterly differnt songs.. coz that was played on my I pod... THIS is courtesy my winamp playlist... i have quite a weird collection of music.. some of which i havent listened to in years..


RULES:1. Put your iTunes, Windows Media Player, etc. on shuffle.
2. For each question, press the next button to get your answer.
3. YOU MUST WRITE THAT SONG NAME DOWN NO MATTER HOW SILLY IT SOUNDS.
4. Tag 10 friends (make me #11 so I can see your results).
5. Everyone tagged has to do the same thing.
6. Have Fun!
Questions:

IF SOMEONE SAYS 'ARE YOU OKAY' YOU SAY?
Kuch khushbuein (Phir milenge)

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOURSELF?
It must have been love- Roxette

WHAT DO YOU LIKE IN A GUY/GIRL?
For whom the bell tolls- Metallica

HOW DO YOU FEEL TODAY?
ishq kabhi kariyo na

WHAT IS YOUR LIFE'S PURPOSE?
How bizarre-

WHAT'S YOUR MOTTO?
waada raha

WHAT DO YOUR FRIENDS THINK OF YOU?
Hui main parineeta- Parineeta

WHAT DO YOUR PARENTS THINK OF YOU?
Hush- deep purple

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT VERY OFTEN?
missing- evanescence

WHAT IS 2 + 2?
love of the loveless- the Eels

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF YOUR BEST FRIEND?
With you- Linkin Park

WHAT IS YOUR LIFE STORY?
One love- Blue

WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU GROW UP?
Everything I do- Bryan Adams

WHAT DO YOU THINK WHEN YOU SEE THE PERSON YOU LIKE?
Ab to aa (RaagBhoop) - Kumar Gandharva

WHAT WILL YOU DANCE TO AT YOUR WEDDING?
naina na mane mora (kumar gandharva)

WHAT WILL THEY PLAY AT YOUR FUNERAL?
sexy eyes- whigfield ( yes.. I DO still have this song on my computer)

WHAT IS YOUR HOBBY/INTEREST?
by myself- linkin park

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST FEAR?
who lamhe who batein- aadat

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST SECRET?
Papa don’t preach- madonna

WHAT WILL YOU NAME THIS NOTE?
Land down under- men at work

WHAT DO YOU WANT RIGHT NOW?
Jaadu hai nasha hai

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF YOUR FRIENDS?
Boulevard of broken dreams- Green Day


well.. what can i say.. i have a lot more songs on winamp than i do on my ipod shuffle...

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Bloody HELLL!!!!!!!!!!

this is teh backlash i was talking about... uneducated chauvinist frustrated men targeting women just because they war 'western outfits' or step out of the house alone...

http://www.hindu.com/2009/02/26/stories/2009022658410300.htm

http://www.babajob.com/person.htm?user=10041

http://shobhaade.blogspot.com/2009/02/must-read-must-help.html

http://thepinkchaddicampaign.blogspot.com/2009/02/attacks-on-women-in-bangalore.html#comments


someone ask these bastards of the taliban if tehy would give up their motorbikes and cars and go back to wearing dhoti kurtas or lungis... if 'westernisation' is what they hate... why the heck are they wearing jeans and riding bikes and cars????

the worst is that no bystanders,... NO ONE comes to help....
With the race to the General elections in India heating up, there are so many things that people say.. for or against parties, candidates, policies et al... the truth remains taht a huuuuuge number of our policymakers are corrupt, inefficient, and worse, criminals..

saw a nice post by IHM on how people should vote for those candidates who have clean records..
http://lifeofanindianhomemaker.blogspot.com/2009/02/this-can-become-turning-point.html

Plus the lok sabha speaker himself raised concern about the fact taht many MPs do not participate in the House proceedings...
http://news.outlookindia.com/item.aspx?654730

AND Told lok sabha members that they didn NOT deserve to sit in the parliament...
http://www.hindustantimes.com/StoryPage/StoryPage.aspx?sectionName=Cricket&id=f939ab3b-a24f-40c6-8f8b-bf7c5872c5fc&&Headline=Speaker+raps+%e2%80%98unruly%e2%80%99+MPs%2c+adjourns+House

then a senior editor in the Indian Express put together an editorial which essentially says that parliamentarians aren't doing any work and wasting time in useless arguments...
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/they-the-people/428072/

makes me wonder who teh heck to vote FOR?????? personally i think Dr. manmohan Singh, Pranab Mukherji and P. Chidambaram are few of the rare honest guys in Indian politics... unfortunately they come with the baggage of dynastic politics with a little prince in teh wings, and kinhgs of corruption like Lalu and Amar Singh in tow.... the alternatives are a money guzzling princess who shoots people if they dont contribute to her coffers while claiming to represent some people she has lost all contact with, and an ageing man who thinks he can revive hindutva in all its terrible glory...

and this is just the top layer... as you go down to the grassroots layers, u'll find representatives of gangs, land mafia, musclemen, spoiled businessmen, people with casese of looting, murder, rape, assault et al... the few good men and women seem to suffocate somewhere under teh weight of the corrupt system... so what is a voter to do???? vote for the few rare good guys in the hope that they will not get cowed down eventually... or.. excercise the right to a negative vote,...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/49-O

which unfortunately is NOT a secret ballot, potentially opning doors to harassment by the political goons who will happily identify and threaten those who cast these negative votes...
because unfortunately, if the voter does NOT go to vote.. the candidate who recieves the maximum number of votes from the miniscule lot who are coerced into voting for them... wins.. and tehn tey can easily say that they represent their voters...

which is why teh MPs won't agree to abolish rule 49 O and continue to argue against adding a none of teh above option to the EVMs and ballot papers.
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/EDITORIAL-COMMENT--None-Of-The-Above/rssarticleshow/4183965.cms

elections are in May...
and there dont seem to be any decent candidates with clean records around....

Heaven help this country..




Sunday, February 22, 2009

romancing the unknown

well... the title may seem like a sweet story... but its not...
depends on your point of view really..

On saturday night a few friends from work decided to go out for a few drinks and dinner. I tagged along.. more like coerced by SD, who is a great friend.. and tries to involve me in office social life a lot.. according to her i live a rather boring life... anyway.. so we went..

had our couple of drinks at this place called THUGS in Daryaganj.. nice place actually.. its in the Broadway theatre right next to delite cinema in Daryaganj, and is nicely decorated in the theme of 'Villains in Indian Cinema' so we sat amidst large paintings of Amrish Puri, Ajit, LOIN, Gabbar singh, shakti kapoor, prem chopra et al.... red walls and lighting on teh dimmer side of bright.. it was quite nice.. Dinner was at the restaurant named Chor Bizarre downstairs. now THAT is one lavishly decorated place.. we were frankly tempted to steal some of the gorgeous metal jewellery on display under the glass of the dining table...

anyway,... this is not supposed to a paean about my dinner.. its what happened in teh middle of it.. SD, who is quite a smoker, wanted to take a sutta break between drinks and dinner while we waited for our biryani... two more of our party accompanied her... 10 minutes later, i went out to get them coz teh food had arrived. while the four of us, (two women and two men) stood outside, a bunch of 'sportsie jaat boys' types arrived and stood staring at us for a few seconds.. one in particular, a tall, rather blank looking guy, kept staring, till finally i got irritated and dragged my companions back inside.. no one lse had noticed them.. perhaps because tehy had their backs to the boys.. (the two men accompanying us being senior photographers, one well over 50, i didnt want to bring the 'jaat boys' to their notice.. dont ask me why.. i just didnt want to create a scene at 11 pm..
well.. so we troop back inside, finish our biryani, and walk out again coz SD and I had to get home 'early' while the elders had a longer night out... a senior accompanied us to make sure we get an auto n all that.. the 'boys' were still standing outside the restaurant!!! and that tall guy was STILL freakin staring at us.. though he was on the phone.. anyway.. as has been drilled into me from years of battling the 'male gaze' i ignored the guy n got into the auto.....
as i climbed in and the auto started to move, the guy threw something at me.. at first i YELLED!!!! "$%&$%@&$%#&%$%#!!!!!
then realised what it was... a piece of paper. with his name and phone number written on it!!!

i started laughing like a maniac.. SD, who had been oblivious to the very presence of any such members of the male species, owing to her having had a tad more drinks than i did.. got rather startled when i suddenly screamed.. and then wanetd to read the note... we couldn't ofcourse, due to the lack of light in the auto...
i could sort of make out what looked like an N right in the beginning of the name.. and then my irritation made me tear up the paper and throw it out... amidst howls of protest from SD who thought that it was the most hilarious thing ever.....



well.. depends on your point of view i guess.. sure, the guy never made any inappropriate remarks.. none that were audible to me anyway... they actually whispered amongst themselves like little girls and stared at us... and averted their eyes if i looked at them in return.. maybe i shouldnt convert this into a rant against men in general.. coz despite their physique... i dont think these were the kind of guys who had teh b^&*s to actually TALK to a girl... they were in all liklihood a bunch of repressed little boys from a rather old fashioned section of old delhi who had to look around before they actually said hello to a girl in their neighbourhood....



so i guess i can laugh it off.. heck.. i could probably add this to the list of 'men who tried to hit on me'... even though i dont know what that boy's name was...



the funny thing is.. it was the whole idea of this man writing his number and name on a piece of paper and throwing it at me... i thought that only happened in saudi arabia where boys are not allowed to even look at a girl, much less talk to her... there was infact a story about boys going 'numbering' in saudi arabia, in New york times a few days ago...

http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/05/13/out-with-the-boys-for-a-night-of-numbering/?scp=1&sq=NUmbering&st=cse




it is quite funny to a girl who is used to rather overt forms of attention seeking behavior from known and unknown men... though i guess its enough to irritate, startle, and if so inclined.. scare a girl...

Thursday, February 19, 2009

blue....

Everything in life had taught her that trust is a very precious thing... and also the most fragile.. she had seen people broken and bleeding because they had trusted someone enough to turn their back to them...

"never show your back to anyone.. first rule of combat. you can get shot, stabbed or imprisoned.. Understood?"
"SIR YES SIR"

she had understood.. and yet she had been unable to resist him...
"just trust me.. thats all.. i will never ask you to do something you dont want to.."
Bruised and bleeding.. she had stumbled out from the room... still wondering how things had gone so terribly wrong..

"I will never let myself depend on anything again".. the mirror mocked her.. showing the bruises, the hurt in her eyes, the tracks the tears had made...
she squared her shoulders...
the scars burned... she doubled up in pain...

she turned in the dark.. to the man lying next to her.. "stop thinking so much.. everything will solve itself"..
cold air came through the open widow and she shivered... "i'll keep you warm.."

"want me to warm you up?"
the shivers intensified..

convulsions.. trouble breathing.. cant think!!!!!
she ran from the bed...

"let me help you.. let me heal you.. i know you can if you just let go..."

a stone fell in her lap.... small. blue.. gleaming in the sunlight...
"it will let you see what the other one sees"

"i cant be there so i'm leaving you a keepsake... throw it away if u dont want it... i wont mind.. i just wanted you to have it.. its yours now.."

darkness.. she turns.. the bed is empty..
shadows dance around her......

she wakes.. steps away from the bed...
moonlight streams in through the curtains...

outside.. lights twinkle in the distance... the wind whips by.. distant lights going farther away...

he'd found his calling... gone away with the promise of returning someday....
if she wanted him..
the war would age him.. it would in a curious way heal him...

"will you pray for me??" "every day"

Monday, February 16, 2009

MORE PIX!!!

A friend who came to cover the protest for his paper sent me these pix.. i'm not supposed to use his name.. but thank you for sending these along!!









n i just noticed... i look rather pissed off in the pix... lol...












Sunday, February 15, 2009

black thoughts...

maybe its the sheer lack of sleep and tiredness catching up with me... but suddenlpy i find myself wondering if the protest we made at jantar mantar was really worth it.... we got people to appreciate us.. we did what we wanted to do.. we got media attention.. yes yes i know..
but while we can be happy about having had our voices put to teh public... there were so many inciodents of violence across the country... sure.. as Usha says in her blog.. so many were averted... but its still true that the POLICE threshed so many couples... we shut up the sri ram sene.. the shiva sena toned down its activities.. and in Delhi.. the abvp actually took out a march instead of teh usual slugfest... sure.. things were calmer... and yet i have this feeling that something is about to erupt... call it premonition.. or simply black thoughts... i have a VERY nasty feeling that this aint over yet... we have won a little battle.. YES we have... but teh war is yet to come...

pichchar abhi baki hai mere dost....
*siiiggghhhh*

Saturday, February 14, 2009

GIRLS AREN'T CATTLE.. STOP LOCKING US UP AFTER DUSK!!!

The title of the post is the slogan that fascinated me the most in today's protest.. JANTAR MANTAR... STAND UP TO MORAL POLICING!!

today i learnt what a single person could do... kudos to you namrata.. for pulling together the protest teh way u did... for something put together in less than a week online.. it was AMAZING!!
a lot of people turned up.. including some bloggers.. and u shouldve heard the excitement in people's voices.. "Youre the one who writes that!!! OMG! ive been following your blog!!"
the best thing was taht people really believed in what they had to say.. the worst.. inane qns by some sections of the media... one enterprising yellow journalist actualy asked Namrata if she had been a victim of the moral police.. "maine toh suna hai ki apke saath bhi aisa kuch ho chuka hai..." and she started laughing... i mean.. WHERE did the guy get his questions from?????
good thign was that everyone else from the media was super supportive.. and i'm not saying that just coz i'm a journalist myself.. but it was REALLY cool how even the TV guys showed a rather sympathetic and supportive side.. wish they had concentrated less on the Valentine's day...



The protest was not about Valentine's day or the right to go to a pub... it was for the right to live in freeedom. with dignity.. and the liberty promised to us by the Indian Constitution. it was about teh right of every woman...and man to choose thir lifestyle and teh fact that no political twit has any right to tell teh rest of teh populace what to do...






There was this uncleji there who stopped by on reading our placards.. and asked us what party we belonged to.. he was rather surprised to find that none of us were part of any political outfit.. that we were just a bunch of people who felt concerned enough to come out on the street in protest.. several people passed by in cars and buses and read our banners.. i saw so many ppl react with a smile.. one girl even waved a 'thumbs up' gesture at us... it was heartening to see taht so many people cared...

I carried one placard home with me on the metro... it was for the first time that i saw not lecherousness but curiosity and to an extent appreciation in people's stares... all through the metro ride.. and the rickshaw ride from teh station... dont know how many people read that placard in my lap.. " girls are not cattle. stop locking us up at dusk" for the first time.. the men who stared at me were not looking at my body.. but the placard... women on the road smiled at me.. people stopped to read..
my own little protest.. to add to teh big one i had been part of...

"dharmarashak bohot hain.. samvidhan ki raksha kaun karega!"





This is the Picture that the ASSOCIATED PRESS.. AP guys have put on their website.. be happy girls.. our protest is on international media..




wish i could get more pix... i didnt have a camera and my photographer only sent me these...
but if u want you can see more pix on Indyeah's blog... ofsongsforthesoul.blogspot.com

or namrata's avalentineforindia.blogspot.com


NDTV apparently showed teh protest live.. as did Cnn ibn... there were people from TOI, HT, Mail today, India Tv, rashtriya Sahara, Indian Express and a host of others... Mayank Austen Soofi, blogger and photographer was also theer.. as was adnan from Reuters...

i hope Mayank wouldnt mind.. but i thought i could put a link to his flickr photostream..
http://www.flickr.com/photos/mayankaustensoofi/







Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Valentine...

I met two bloggers from Delhi today.. and realised perhaps for the first time just how powerful a medium this is..
ever since the attack on women at a pub in mangalore.. and last week's kidnapping attempt at kolkata med college.. i've been bubbling with this anger that i didnt quite know how to deal with.. all i could do was fume and swear and argue with my dad over how most men in this country deserved to be shot and left to bleed..
in the last two days.. ive realised just what CAN be done if you really put your mind to it..
my last post was about teh consortium of pubgoing, loose and forward women.. a faceebook group tahts planning a pub bharo andolan and various otehr peaceful measures to counter teh sriram sene's attack.. TODAY i met two women not much older than me.. who were planning a protest rally at Jantar Mantar ON valentine's day....
it was freaky enough sudenly running into the person who'se work uve been reading for quite a few days and who your friend recommends.. what really blew me away was teh level of dedication these guys had... Namrata, whose blogs at http://www.avalentineforindia.blogspot.com/, has single handedly put together the entire protest.. complete with media contacts.. including yours truly.. and online discussions with other bloggers.. Abhilasha.. blogname Indyeah... http://www.ofsongsforthesoul.blogspot.com/ has even contacted other bloggers across teh country.. including teh girls behind the pink chuddi campaign... she's even a member of an online group dedicated to writing against gender inequality..
and was was so awesome was that they'd read MY little personal rant of a blog...

i'd gone to do a writeup on namrata's initiative.. and found myself dedicating time to make sure that i added my two bits to it.. tahts what this entry is for btw.. my friends.. who may or may not read my report in teh paper tomorrow.. may just read my blog and decide to come for teh protest..

Jantar Mantar. saturday 14 february 2009, 11 am -1:30 pm.
Please Come


coz its not about the valentine's day celebrations.. its about being able to step out of the house without fear of molestation.. its about being able to walk around with your friends without getting rude stares and cheap comments from passersby.. its about being able to LIVE.. as opposed to plain surviving...

do it for the greatest love of your life... your freedom..

The Pink Chaddi campaign

Women of the world unite.. you have nothing to lose but your chains...
according to some Indian politicians.. beating up women and molesting them isnt half as deterimental to "Indian Culture" as women stepping out of teh house and 'talking to men'... apparently these bastards of the taliban (can anyone see how ironic it is that the Hindu far right and the muslim far right have exactly the same misogynistic views..) think that they can get away with insulting wome in the name of "Indian Culture'....

its teh same sick attitude that made the taliban create women's only hospitals with no medication.. and ban girls from attending school.. its the same mentality that can thrive in a social setup where a new bride is tortured for dowry.. where a girl child isnt allowed to live even before she is born.. its the same attitude that can blame teh victim of a gangrape for 'inciting it because she didnt sit at home'..

And its high time we put an end to it.. valentine's day may not have meant quite so much to us all this while.. but this year its got to be different..
the whole legend of valentine's day started with a rebellion against a tyrant who would not let people marry by choice.. lets turn this day into a symbol of rebellion against the sick patriarchal mentality..


http://www.thepinkchaddicampaign.blogspot.com/

Friday, February 06, 2009

letting go....

"please talk to me.. we need a chance at closure.."
"why cant you give up past regrets annie??"
"I know its over.. its just gonna take some getting used to.."

"you broke it and threw it away.."
I had accused him of letting go.. of spoiling everything.. and i had held on to the little piece of glass that signified a promise of love.... i'd cherished it and saved it in a little corner of my purse.... as the memories and the pain lay protected in a corner of my heart.. today i let them go...

a kiss.. and i let it drop..... said goodbye to something that had been part of my life.. part of my soul..
i left it at a place where we had memories... where today i went with the determination to forget the past and grab on to life NOW before it passed me by...

I kissed it.. and left it there... with a little pile of paper...
goodbye