I wrote this short story as part of my Writing Portfolio for college. I don’t usually write short stories, but I had a lot of fun writing this one. It contains a wee bit of swearing ( you can thank my limited knowledge of Hindi swear words), so be warned! Continue reading
I’ve been meaning to write this for a while.
Everyday, for the past 3 years, I travel by BMTC bus from my home to college and back. As I write this, I realize that no matter how much I grumble and mutter about the hassles of using public transport, Bangalore actually does have a pretty efficient bus system that many people do not take advantage of, or are simply not aware of. I have come to cherish my bus journeys everyday, I think it really has given me a better understanding of people in general. I see (and interact with ) so many people on the bus, some ace bus travelers and some awkward ones.
So I thought maybe I should write about some rules that I personally follow on the bus, which have helped me make these journeys a little more successful and less stressful!
Be warned, these are restricted to bus travel within Bangalore and are strictly based on my personal experiences and may not apply to everybody!
Sometimes, I wish I had one of those jackets that Richard Castle has which state what he is, in loud bold letters for the whole world to see – WRITER. I say this because, even if at the most superficial level, it’s some kind of identification. It sets him apart from not only his non colleagues but maybe even his peers.
See? So simple, so confident. It just rushes off your tongue like a gush of air. Whoosh. Powerful, yes? But it’s not so easy to identify with. Okay, so I write. But I don’t just want to be a writer. I want to be a (here we go again) WRITER. One that I can identify with the confidence that I WANT to have, that I often find myself wondering if I will EVER have.
I write all the time. I write tweets, poems, blog posts, essays, tests, exams. I write my name. I write my address, my college, my class, my section. I’ve written in slam books, on restaurant feedback cards. I’ve written on Facebook walls, on real walls. I’ve written my number on a boy’s hand. I’ve written love letters, hate letters, official letters. I’ve written apology notes, thank you notes.
But this I could be You. And I don’t want to be You. I want to be Me.
Me, the WRITER.
When I began to watch Masterchef Australia (Season 2) on television, my mother looked at me with surprise and said, ”But you don’t even show any interest in cooking! And you hate the cookery shows I watch during lunch time!” (She would know. Lets just say, battles have been fought over this!) Anyway, I became an ardent fan of Masterchef NOT because it’s a ‘show about cooking’ but it’s a show that concentrates on the food itself, on the challenges that contestants face and the learning that takes place. So when I saw the advertisements for Masterchef India, I shuddered. And when I saw who the judge (well technically, he’s one of 3 judges but of course he has to be ”the main judge”) was, I shuddered even more.
Last night, the first episode of Masterchef India aired on Star Plus, and it was so much worse than I’d imagined :
- Since when does India translate into North and West India? Producers, have you heard that there people in this country who live south of Mumbai and east of Delhi who are also Indians? Check that out sometime.
- The show, as expected, applied the ‘Indian Idol’ style of overhead shots of long, snaking lines of people screaming ‘IMGOINGTOBETHEMASTERCHEFINDIA’ occasionally interjected with ‘AKKI I LOVE YOU’. Yes, aunty, that’s the reason you should enter this show. For Akshay Kumar.
- The show insisted on concentrating on the personal lives of the ‘contestants’. I’m not disrespecting the fact that some of them may have faced a lot of hurdles, but unless that had any relevance to their love for cooking, how does that matter? You want us to feel sorry for you, there’s apparently a show called Rakhi ka Insaaf that might help.
- The lighting and shots used. What are they thinking!? At least try to make the food look appealing! I’m sure some of it tastes good, so why use harsh white light and clumsy framing to make it look the opposite?
- Reality show therefore MUST concentrate on the tears. Apparently this one is written in stone somewhere cause I definitely saw more tears than food last night. And no, I’m not including my own tears of frustration.
- The 3 ‘judges’. One cooked in Bangkok and two are chefs. Akshay obviously is supposed to be good cop, while the other two alternate between bad cop and confused cop.
- The music and background score. Sounds like ‘Aahat’ and ‘Fear Factor’ most of the time. Let’s not forget the ‘dhadam, dhadam, dhadam’ from the K Serials while the camera concentrates on a contestant when he/she stands around with a nervous/irate/*insert choice of emotion here* expression on the face
- And last, but not least, Mr. Khiladi. It’s quite obvious that he’s going to be playing the star card very often, and make the show about him rather than the food.
It’s been a while like I felt like this. Filled with negative energy, I might say.
Usually this is the point where I burst into an angst filled poem that never manages to be read by the intended recipient. I can’t very well go up to someone and say here, I wrote you this and proceed to watch as their face contorts into a question mark, can I? What would YOU do if some crazy girl wrote a hate poem about you huh? And no, it is NOT flattering/romantic/cute.
I remember once not-so-long-ago a freaky-yet-potentionally-harmless-boy told me that he named a character after me in his story. I didn’t wait to find out what “she” was like, or what happened to “her”. I kind of.. fled. The fact is, it’s disturbing to think about the way someone else sees you.
But it’s more disturbing to see yourself as you, right? Who is you, anyway? Isn’t that frightening? Are you the girl who listens to a certain type of music? (I’ve got Spice Girls’ “Viva Forever” playing right now, don’t judge me!) Or are you the girl who treats herself to the glass of ice tea from the stall near the college gate everyday? But all these conceptions of “me-ness” are mine, they aren’t yours. This one little trait you actually might find adorable, but then unless I reveal it to you, you’d never know and your entire perception of “me-ness” and your subsequent judgment (I know, Spice Girls, I know) might rest on this little missing piece of “me-ness” that you haven’t encountered.
And then your way of seeing ME is totally not fair.
Somehow, the past couple of months have gotten me so “consumed” by “the system” that I’m really wondering if the whole creative-person-who-can-write thing was a really long phase, and maybe I’m really meant to be one of those people who sits behind a desk and stays there for long periods of time.
But then I would be one of those people with a desk filled with stacks of post-it’s. The pen stands (yes, for there will be many) will be full of highlighters of every conceivable colour, correction pens that actually DO WORK (as opposed to the ones that give up half through when you’re trying to obliterate the word ‘orgasm’ when you really meant to write ‘organism’), and gel pens (gel, not ball point or fountain although I’d love to use a fountain pen except I write super fast and you know, that’s not conducive. A fountain pen must never be abused like that) in red, green and black. Not blue, I hate blue pens for some strange reason. Black seems more classy, don’t you think? And oh, my desk would probably be wooden since I don’t see myself sitting behind a cold, character-less metal one.
That wouldn’t do at all.
You know I just realized.. Because we are all so ”connected” and living in age where information disseminates so quickly, and so fast, it’s difficult to hang on to life’s ‘SURPRISE!’ moments anymore. Case in point is the way the movie business has changed, I think. I’m doing everything in my power to stay away from stills/videos/blah related to the New Moon movie but it’s just so difficult! I have Perez Hilton tempting me with photographs from the sets, but I truly honestly don’t want to know anything! This is almost as bad as when a mean classmate once told me the ending of the fourth Harry Potter book because, well, she was nasty.
And now, because I’m following Imran Khan on Twitter, I’m going to get regular updates about his new film with Sonam Kapoor. So what, now to protect myself, I guess I have to disconnect from the world!
A couple of hundred years ago, Benjamin Franklin shared with the world the secret of his success. Never leave that till tomorrow, he said, which you can do today. This is the man who discovered electricity. You think more people would listen to what he had to say. I don’t know why we put things off, but if I had to guess, I’d have to say it has a lot to do with fear. Fear of failure, fear of rejection, sometimes the fear is just of making a decision, because what if you’re wrong? What if you’re making a mistake you can’t undo? The early bird catches the worm. A stitch in time saves nine. He who hesitates is lost. We can’t pretend we hadn’t been told. We’ve all heard the proverbs, heard the philosophers, heard our grandparents warning us about wasted time, heard the damn poets urging us to seize the day. Still sometimes we have to see for ourselves. We have to make our own mistakes. We have to learn our own lessons. We have to sweep today’s possibility under tomorrow’s rug until we can’t anymore. Until we finally understand for ourselves what Benjamin Franklin really meant. That knowing is better than wondering, that waking is better than sleeping, and even the biggest failure, even the worst, beat the hell out of never trying.
- Meredith Grey, Grey’s Anatomy
Just finished reading One Night With A Prince by Sabrina Jeffries. Yes, a trashy romance novel. Yes, the kind I love. Yes, the one I stayed up till 4 am to read.
Changed the look of the blog again, I felt the other was a bit too dark. Speaking of dark, I discovered that there’s Season 5 of Grey’s Anatomy on Zee Cafe (2 Episodes back-to-back). Couple this with Season 4 playing on Star World.. I am going to get a sizeable dose of dark and twisty Meredith and oh-so-dreamy Derek every week hopefully!
Gossip Girl Season 3. Oh Chuck. But why does Dan look so slimy!?
I am quite amused with this whole business of the Congress offering ‘opinions’ on Shashi Tharoor’s tweeting business, but a bit disturbed. Isn’t that usually the role played by another major political party in the country?
The end of another semester is nearing, so that means getting back assignments and test papers. As I look through my answers, I realize that I can’t recall ever having put those particular words there.
I’m a stranger to my own work!
(I could have put this on Twitter, but I feel I am neglecting my poor blog)
PS : It’s raining, gorgeous weather I’d say, if only I didn’t have to go out and catch two buses to college now.