Friday, June 20, 2008

Like attracts like

It’s true
Which is why partners even start looking like each other after years
Or even pets and owners
Don’t know who changed the way they look there!
Long lasting relationships and friendships are between people who are similar
Sure opposites attract but for things to last long term it’s the similarities that last
Hoping to get someone to change for you is the biggest myth ever
Yet moving beyond this I even believe that you attract things and situations in your life
The work you believe is meant for you, is what you get
Sooner or later you attract it
If you give enough strength and belief to your thoughts
You can get the dream home, holiday, vacation, partner
And similarly if you only think about your problems
That is what you get more of
So stop trying to read other people’s thoughts
And concentrate on yours…

booked for life

The silver lining to being grounded with a broken ankle is that I have rediscovered the joy and ecstasy of curling up with a good book.
Sure I have read all my life and spend a considerable amount of time and money shopping for books. Yet of late, like the last couple of years, the books stay on the bookshelf, since the luxury of time to put up my feet and get lost in the author’s world, is rare. Sounds familiar?
Between crazy schedules, striking the crazy work-life balance and constantly struggling to keep pace with the barrage of information in the newspapers, magazines, news channels and the wicked web world.
And now that time and the weather are both conspiring to make sure I stay home and read, I’m loving it. And rediscovering that reading is so much more stimulating than watching movies. Here I make the movie in my head and it’s so much fun.
Rummaging through my book shelf I also discovered that every book has a story. Not the one in it but the one in my head, with the memories it triggers off in my head.
As I see the odd bestseller on the shelf, I crack up recalling how I parked at the kerb to rush through the last 50 pages. Given that the place I parked was 100 metres from office, everyone…er noticed. Or the first Robert kiyosaki I picked up because someone I knew, said I wouldn’t enjoy it. I so loved it that he is a friend I turn to ever so often.
Well that’s true for me. After I discover an author I have to read everything they have written and get to know them better. Very often, I discover a lot of me in them and they become friends. Ernest Hemmingway, ghalib, khalil gibran, toni Morrison, amy tan, salman rushdie, vikram seth, jack canfield, firaq gorakhpuri or rumi. They aren’t just people who write books, they are people who talk to me. They are those who accompany mother mary when she comes to me, like in the beatles song “when I’m in trouble mother mary comes to me speaking words of wisdom…let it be”

Galli ke nukkad pe

Galli ke nukkad pe choti si thi pehle
Mere phoolon ki dukaan
Aaj uparwaale ke karam se florist ban gaye hai
College jo ban gaya hai kone pe
Roz roz rose day to nahi hota
Par jawaani mein phool zaroori hote hai
Sab pata hai mujhe
Lal se pyar ka izhaar
Peele se shuruaat
Par mujhe fikr hai unki
Jo peechewali 15 manzila building mein rehte hai
Permanent customer hain na
College ke bachchon ki tarha badalne waale nahi
8 saal ho gaaye hai yaar
lal maruti wala jo daily ek rose lekar jaata tha
ab gaadi badi ho gayi hai
aur mehbooba biwi
to humare paas aana bandh ho gaya
chalo khush rahe
birthday, anniversary pe to hume hi yaad karte hai
aur vo 5 maalevali madam
roz hero ke ghar pe bouquet behjti thi
ek saal tak chalta raha hai mamla
finally humne hi bol diya
madam rehne do na
ab sirf birthday pe jaata hai
hazaar waala bouquet
yeh film bhi na…
aur vo 11 maale ka chikoo
vo hi to bataya father day, mother day
mummy ko orchid pasand hai
rafiq bhai kahin se bhi lao
mother’s day pe orchids hi dene hai
lekar aaye bhai
mummmyji khud dukaan pe aayi
thank you bolne, English mein
isliye humko bhi sad laga
jab chikoo ki mummy ka maloom chala
sab funeral ke phool arrangements yahin se to huye
ek orchids ka bouquet lekar aaya aur main hi dekar aaya
itne saal mein na
customer bhi insaan hi lagne lagte hai….

The girl with the sad brown eyes

Shweta looked sad
She never thought she would reach this point
Waiting for a flight to get back home scared her
The same stony silence from people she had to call family
The same having to weigh each word before uttering it
Living like your walking on eggshells is so tough
And sudhir’s indifference made it worse
Was this the guy she had fought with her family and friends to marry
4 months into the marriage and all she felt was regret
How she wished she was on a flight to anywhere other than Bombay
Saira had eyes that spoke
And right now they screamed in pain
She felt like such a failure
She was such a nerd at the interview she had waited so long for
She sounded like a bumbling idiot even to herself
She would now go back a failure
Her friends would try to console her while sniggering
Her mother will get another chance to point out how dumb she was
And she would go back to the job she detested
She wondered if by wishing she could make her plane crash
But knowing her luck she doubted she could even manage that

I don’t know if she was called shweta or saira
But the girl sitting across me at the airport lounge had very sad brown eyes….

past the expiry date

“He was awful, he beat her up” “well she’s no saint either must have done something to provoke him, taali to…”
Simplistic isn’t it? The victim and the villain. He raised his hand, cannot be
Condoned under any circumstances. But what about the woman whose man has never raised his hand on her, has no “vices” so to speak but living with him is a new lesson in mental torture each day
Who sets the rules and what’s acceptable and what’s not
Spats and friction are a part of every relationship, agreed. Yet what’s a good time to realize that the relationship you are in is not ok and killing you.
What can begin as lighthearted banter, to be taken as a joke can often have the makings of some serious trouble? Most times you are too new in the relationship or too keen on him to pay attention to these signals. Sad but true.
Sure you guys were born in different homes and led lives that were not similar for a large part of your lives but that do not make his upbringing better than yours. Constant snide remarks on your upbringing, habits and family are not ok. It’s not on if either partner does that but the truth is that more often than not, it is the man who does it and gets away with it. Without your even realizing it there are a whole lot of times you think you should be agreeing with him. Use your own mind woman!
It’s all very cute to reveal all but it’s just better to be judicious if you think something is going to be held against you. Trust me there is a whole lot that you probably will never know about his growing years and it really doesn’t matter. The fact that the two of you have a great present and future is what is great
If the guy is totally putting you down repeatedly in public and private, it’s bad news. You are not in his life to make him look smart. Just smarten up and tell him to get his act together. There is stuff that he knows and you don’t but it works the other way as well too. So make that amply clear. If someone else were to make you feel small, be it a cousin or a smart alec at work wouldn’t the person get a mouthful or be struck off the list, so why should it be any different for your partner?
Its actually not so complicated. You give someone the permission to treat you badly and that’s why they do. It’s not like a stamped and sealed letter that you deliver but the body language, the letting things pass that give the bully strength. Your gut tells you its wrong but your conditioning tells you, you’re overreacting. Trust your gut.
Losing self confidence, having to think a million times before you air an opinion can be extremely stifling. It’s not natural and sooner or later you are bound to rebel. The sooner you do it, the better. The people who tell you, you should grin and bear it are the ones who wanted to but never had the guts to do it. Yes that includes your mother.
Claim your life back. It’s not about breaking up the relationship unless it is beyond redemption. It is about reclaiming your life. What do you want from life? What is the legacy you want to leave behind? Do you make time for your passions, your friends, people and things? Your happiness is your responsibility. Sure your partner should add to the happiness but if he is the only source of your happiness, it’s not on. Not fair to the guy either.
Please don’t live in a loveless lifeless relationship. You will rebel someday and by then you will have lost some very precious time. Think about it

Half truths

Was he really busy or was he lying
I don’t know and never will
After some time it won’t even matter
But half truths can niggle for a very long time
Yet it’s all around and everyone seems ok with it
Was it really like there was no room for me on the new project
Or did the boss have to fulfill a promise to the new PYT on the block
Both of us know the unasked question
Yet everyone behaves like it’s all ok
Did my aunt think I would never know that the gift she recycled to me
Was what I gave her on her birthday last year
Everyone’s smiling and staying clear from the truth
Sometimes not asking and clearing the air
Can scar a relationship forever

But then the bit on let sleeping dogs lie is as true…

Break a leg

It’s awful. Experienced such helplessnes after ages. A disjointed ankle, a fracture as an add on and I seriously am someone I don’t know.
A number on a hospital bed. A patient, just another patient, who can’t walk without Vinita Godbole’s help.
She couldn’t be bothered about my views on world peace or whether I hold a phd degree.
It’s actually important that you get this reality check sometimes.
You get a dose of pure primal physical pain that you cannot get philosophical about.
You sleep when the nurse decides you must and no she does not even notice your protests
You sit on a wheel chair in a pink checked hospital gown and patiently wait for the x ray technician to finish flirting with the receptionsit
You actually listen to your mom when she gives you instructions like you were aged 7
You just love your friends who rally around and really try to make the pain go away
You feel the genuine warmth of people on a sms or email and realize that little gestures are actually not little at all
You also figure out that you did waste some time on people who don’t care
You appreciate everything anyone does for you because every little word or gesture matters so much when you’re not in control
And you really wonder why the term “break a leg” can mean anything good to your theatre pals