Wednesday, May 24, 2006

mills boons and chick lit

read somehwere, about someone ranting about the sadness of chicklit. What exactly is chik lit?
bieng a chica myself i take umbrage at the fact that I didnt know the exact meaning..
so here goes "The books are fun accounts of witty, overworked and under loved women looking for better jobs and a better love life. A majority of them come from Britain. But this is just the surface story. Every Chick Lit story I've read also has a deeper motive driving the character, some secret from her past she still hasn't overcome (of course there are some that do not)".

WHat does that tell you? It means its today's mills and boons. There are many parallels. Mills and boons (or romance novels, the ones read hidden from mom in school)and with decreasing delight when no longer banned and chick lit both are best in moderation. Their front pages though very different in style from each other are identifiable as ohh its a romance novel, ohh its a chick lit.
For those uninitiated or the "men" on this blog page, romance novels usually have a gorgeous hunk of a man, bieng looked upon lovingly by a ravishing slighlty unclothed woman, oh both may be slightly on the lack of clothes side..but that is a bit unusual.
In chick lit..there is a plethora of bright colors combined with a chirpy looking drawing, which ususally contains atleast one girl in a skirt and also one martini glass either in conjunction or seperately.
other than these superficial similarities, they are both recommended in moderation, too much will make you love sick or friend sick or party sick.
They are both great time wasters and are written in a particular style (poles apart, but there is a theme) and usually have atleast one successful/beautiful woman who the heroine does not like and fears will steal her man/job/friend.
Before this post gets out of hand (afetr all I am at work and should have better things to do) I would like to comment why am I fascinated by the topic. It is because, both are directed towards women of different generations, romances towards an earlier one who all unifromely wanted a hunk of a man with a gorgeous castle surrounded by a moat to keep away the bad people. And chick lit is directed towards todays woman, have the priorities changed? I think so...if we can assume(for the moment) that literature represents desires of the people it is directed towards, then todays woman hankers not afetr the hunk in the moated castle but after a core group of friends they can run to, a job that pays them well and yet lets them be free birds at the stroke of 5 pm, a man who understands them and yet is liked by thier friends and wait wait wait for the perfect man wjo is preferably the owner of the compny you work for (dang i work in a office full of women :( and while you wait, date, party and console friends who have lost their latest loves.
so is prince charming out and prince hot boss in?
seems to describe my life, how about yours?

Saturday, May 20, 2006

feminism

read chandni's blog on a similar topic, and it got me thinking,
feminism, equal rights for men and women. I am all for it. Yeh! let everyone be equal!!! men against women, women with men, whatever...
but also to remember that as we have developed these stereotypes about women, we women have also learnt how to use them to our advantage.
So with equal men and women, women stop bieng the softer sex, stop expecting the bus seat labeled "keval mahilayon ke liye" . You cannot have it both ways. You are no longer allowed to look up at a big strong man on the railway station and bat you eyelashes and expect he will come running over to move your bags for you.
Equality in jobs..awesome! what we needed all along, but then women dont expect that the workplace will change to fit your whims.
Am not saying that men shouldnt have to change, they do, but why do we want centuries of stereotypes, centuries of male dominated jobs, or female dominated jobs to change suddenly with the rocky road smoothened over, so that we can glide over it?
To a very large extent it is women who are resposible for this state of affairs, have you ever sneered at a guy taking cooking classes? or laughed with the guys about there bieng only one sad girl in their mechanical engineering department? If never, then you have truly left stereotypes behind.
Sterotypes will exist, they are a part of the human functioning, a part of our cognitive map of the world. Fight them, but be sure that what comes up is what you wanted! and realize there are certian stereotypes you still like , like chivalry, out they go too..
believe me the world will be a much harder place without them, it is not the utopia we imagine. Because then we wil have men who dont protect, who whine and cry and nag and sit at home, we dont really want that now, do we?
sorry if this post offends or if it is incomphrehensible..just a flow of thought !

Thursday, May 18, 2006

on cleaning

today, I cleaned the kitchen
It is such a rare thing that it deserves a post to itself, repeating over and over again, I cleaned the kitchen , I cleaned the kitchen..after aybe a couple of months.
This was a rather special cleaning, my roomates have left, leaving the house to me, its mine all mine..precccioooousssssss...
it is such a bliss to be alone, I havent experienced this deep dark silence in such a long time. It is such a relief to not hear people on the phone and other people singing. I can play music, sing and dance peacably!
SO back to the cleaning, it took me 3 hours and a lot of kitchen towels. It also left me quite bewildered, because I found several masala's I could not identify, 5 open packets of sambhar powder and 4 unopened ones. 4 packs of rasam powder , all opened. Considering the fact that my roommates never cooked and in these two years probably made rasam/sambhar maybe twice..then how many open packets does that come to (scratches head).
I also found rotten corn (in the cavernous depth of the refrigerator) and several empty katoris, why?
Also found were several containers full of rai (mustard seeds) and unidentifiable powders..yet again why, where? who? what? mein kaun hu? kahan hu? scratch scratch?

so here is a missive to all of those invisible people who are still living in my house, can you please explain the absence of the all the screws that used to hold pan handles in place, and pray explain where the handles went, also explain who has been making sambhar and i have not been gettting any of it?

And also explain (While we are it) where did my sock go? oh actually the sock is fine, it went to whereever missing sock and pens go , just thought i'd like to know and make a fortune bringing them back..

ahh eternal mysteries...

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

in passing

this too shall pass
again interesting conversation with interesting friend.."this too shall pass", attributed to abrahm lincoln, this has now become a cliche.I sat down to think, this too shall pass..hmm some must have passed then, what has?so here is a list of ten things I thought would never pass but did:

1.12th CBSE board: first the exam wouldnt get over and then when it did, the wait for the result drove me crazy. When the results came out, I was the only one happy with mine. Expecting to fail, I passed.
2. Another long wait, admits to US, in terms of both admits, aid and the visa.
3. Longing for rich food on my diets, now realizing that the longing has passed, leaving behind only a whiff of the craving I used to have.
4. The pain of a long long crush on someone who you end up in abetting in getting some other girl to go their way. It passed, leaving in retrospect only amusement and a little bit of bitterness, couldnt he have seen?
5. Leaving home to go to a new city first, then to a new country and sharing a room..yikes!!
6. Each semester afetr semester of studying and more studying, the craziness at the end, promising myself, if I make it thorugh this one, I will study all year round! puccaa
7. The strong desire to tell someone what I really really think about them, but holding it in because it would hurt their feelings too much
8. Leaving people behind. Drifting away from best friends, trying hard to mend bridges and seeing the two banks become further apart. Now only faint memories of some good times and others not so good. This definately took time to pass
9. Picking up the phone to call that special someone to tell a special news and realize he probably doesnt care anymore
10. Greed, gluttony, sloth, hard work, honesty, anger, pain, laughter, love...this too shall pass

but then there are some that never do, and stay wrapped carefully, not letting it heal, refusing to let the cool air of time ease its fevered brow, hopefully that too shall pass.

Monday, May 15, 2006

travel

I was out this weekend, had a canoeing and hiking experience.
Something that left me tired and refreshed at the same time. This entire semester has taken more worrying than I realised. Always been pushing and worrying and working or feeling guilty for indulging. This was what I needed. A place to put aside everything with a group of people who did not make me want to be somebody. I just chillaxed. and learnt new things about myself.
Slept under the stars, and the full moon, enjoyed the campfire when it was roaring blaze and enjoyed it as it died down and my eyes heavy with sleep wouldnt close because it was breathtakingly beautiful.
And hiking, realizing that this body that I work so hard, has now become something i can enjoy.
And canoeing, woo the joy! the exhilaration..my second time canoeing, lots of rapids, lots of calm pools..sorta like life.
Think of the analogy..I like water as a rule , same as life, both are scary sometimes. You are in a canoe and you see a rock coming but you cannot avoid it, you manage to survive hitting rocks, and the biggie..you are so scared of falling into the water, but when you do, you realize it isnt as bad as I thought!
too much of an analogy..maybe! works for me though..and with numb fingerslike the regrets we bear sometimes, I now sign off...

Friday, May 05, 2006

name the numbers

ok so this is for chandni , she wrote 10 words with the letter Q and what she associated with them. I commented and have now shouldered the burden to write 10 words and their associations. Comment on this blog and I shall assign you letters for your blog :D
So chandni medam has given me "v" ..and I said.."how do i hate thee, let me name the ways" so here goes
"The Instructions: Comment, and I shall give you a letter. Go back to your journal, and write ten words beginning with that letter, including an explanation of what those words means to you and why."

Victory: the most obvious, v for victory, I associate it with being carried around on shoulders of fans with arm thrust out to the sky , truimphantly touching it the way only someone in that moment can. On a personal note victory will be truly mine when I either finish my masters or when I run that elusive marathon. Coincidently one of my favorite phrases that always seemed all powerful in its brevity "veni vidi vici"

Vixen: ahem, always desired to be the foxy bitch but have always ended up with the label of a nice girl or crazy girl, but never that jealous hate that true "vixen" inspire!

Venice: One of the places I want to visit, water and artitechture, what more could I want? Old wrold charm and Italian men, food and gorgeous clothes..are the icing on this already rich cake

Victim: Arent we all? Of circumstances or of our own warped thoughtprocesses. Victims of the society, and the rights it giveth and taketh away with a hand equally swift at both times. Victims of fifteen minutes of fame syndrome. Victims of our own lack of understanding or too much of. Victim of our times , of the "zeitgeist"

valentine: aye haye, use um kaise bhul sakte hain..valentine ke din mein...Technically the second most depressing day of the year. The most depressing day will not be mentioned here. Depressing because of the strange expectations that we have from it. All of us single, usually happily so (or so i pray) suddenly get pipedreams of godiva chocolates and men popping out of bushes with rose in mouth (hopefully still with thorn, and hopefully it hurts) and proposing with streams of adjectives which include the word slim and beautiful.
doesnt happen and not to anybody, because it happens only in archies and hallmark cards and yes hindi and english movies. If it does happen in real life, I pity the poor woman. Depressing also because I end up eating too much chocolate :D and because of sad behavior of indian politians who actually make more people itch to do some obscene "non bhartiya sanskriti things"

vegan: a rather interesting concept, which I have no guts to try. Most of my favorite things are dairy..cheese, yogurt, butter, and ofcouse milk which I practically have to restrain myself from! But maybe someday I will try it, because it is a game of willpower and survival in the urban jungle.

Verve: a very special word, because I believe I have it. I have a verve for everything I do, even writing this blog when I should be writing the motivation final. A zest that truly wakes me up every day raring to go. This verve is what defines me to myself, and it is what makes life, life and I am thankful for it. It is also the intercollege festival where most of my college memories center. Meeting my best friend and becoming best friends, my biggest crush and worst downfall, funny strange things that you can only do when you are 19..and my best penpal!!

Volatile: a trait in me which I have tried to suppres so hard that I have practically gone over the other side and barely ever say whats on my mind or react without thinking. But truly, I miss that crazy temper of mine..atleast my mind was empty at times ,after the outburst happened! now it is full of unsaid things which come back to my lips times too many.

vehicle: I had to bring my car in didnt I? :D , nothing more nned said on the topic. It is something which I have wanted for so long, and it has made my parents so porud of me, for doing it by myself, for this is the first thing I can say that s truly my own, from my own hard earned money.

Vande matram: The sentiment behind these has come to mean more and more to me since I left the country. Never has the tricolor been so dear to me, or the sight of the ashok stambh on my passport been more important. More and more, I find myself yearning to go back and give back to where I belong. Not to return to the safety of home, but to return to it as an adult and to be a part of its crazy swarming versimilitude and make it grow and be proud of it. Finally it is home, my motherland, only to which I can return, assured of a warm welcome, prodigal daughter or not. My mother I salute thee (vande matram) .

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Neither expected nor unexpected

An interesting conversation with an interesting friend.
there are some people you meet in this world, that you know you'd get along with instantaneously and you are seldom let down. There are again some people you meet the you know you'd probably hate the guts of, and again you are seldom proved wrong.
what is it? I say SFP: self fulfilling prophecy, when you believe you will enjoy a particular person, you make more effort to listen to them and enjoy their company. To some extent it is also intuition or as Anne of green gables would put it "kindred spirit".
But what differentiates a social butterfly from a loner like me? I am incapable of building strong relationship with homogeneous group and also incapable of maintaining those relationships.
Maybe the social butterfly sees kindred spirits in everyone? And I don't..

on another note what I was thinking of today was what would I like to leave behind. In the U.S. the one thing I would dearly love to have is a campus building named after me, for a multitude of reasons..One: they cant pronounce it and I would love it when new people will curse kstate every time they have to look for the dam building. Another would be because if a building is named after me, I probably did something good or atleast made a lot of money and gave a bit of it to kstate . This place has given me a lot, and I believe in giving back to it.
I will also find ways to give back to Pune and Indore, but there the path seems less clear, because I want to help someone in a good way, but not the bureaucracy or the authority. I want people who everyone has given up on to show their mettle.
another legacy which not a dream but a reality is organ donation. I don't know if I mentioned it, but it is something I believe in, which most people don't like the thought of. If I cant use it and someone else can, let them have their fill of it. If someone's life is saved and mine lost, so be it, because every moment I am aware that I have done exactly what I wished to. Maybe not the right thing or the morally correct thing or the nice thing or the brave thing, but what I wanted to do..ofcourse helped along by the unconscious and societal influences..
Another rambly post...nonsense of the first order :D