Monday, February 10, 2014

Once upon a time it was Winter

A dream..
Our limbs streamed into dawn
leaving trails of light and smoke.
We curled into the air and
no room could hold us.

It started like this..

First I took off my pride,
I wore it like a shawl to shield all my insecurities.
She loved it.

Then I took off my certainty,
It hung around like thousands of uncomfortable memories wound tight
like a knot to hide my ability to be free.
She loved it.

I took off my fear,
It gripped my feet like stone slippers, hoping to keep me from ever leaping
as far as I was capable, often succeeding.
She loved it.

Finally I took off my doubt.
The doubt that was there so long it had become me.
I ripped it off to reveal
the flesh of what I felt and might have, forever.

She didn’t love that..

She then left wearing my clothes
And I started dressing for winter.

Friday, June 21, 2013

The You-yess Fantasy

So, a couple of months ago I was talking to one of my friends about my time in the US and I had some honest views about it. I was laughed at(not the bad one, a good laugh J) and told to write about it,
After some persuasion I promised that I would do so after my trip to India. So here it is,

“Just tell yourself, Duckie, you’re really quite lucky”

I am going to do something unusual about this. I would first like to talk about the guys who have not chosen to go to the You-Yess(Yes, that is how I pronounce it). Kudos to you guys, you are the ones who didn't take the easier way out and please, don’t be disheartened by the applause and the number of likes a “Got my Visa” status usually receives. And stop listening to those aunties and uncles who pester you with comparisons to one of your cousins or friends who are studying or working abroad. These people are most likely good-for-nothing chaps themselves who like to take out the failures of their lifelong bitterness on you.
Read the above quote by Dr. Suess again and realize how lucky you are to be with your family and friends. If that’s not something to smile about then I don’t know what is.

“Hope is a good thing. maybe the best of good things. and no good thing ever dies”
I've always been fascinated with this quote from ‘The Shawshank Redemption’(One of the best movies I’ve ever seen)
To those who will begin your journey to the you-yess in a few days, all I can say is, despite all of your inquiries with friends who've been there; I can promise you that you will have a unique experience for sure. What I cannot guarantee is that whether your initial experiences will be good or bad. Mine were exceedingly good so I am inclined to think that that is usually the case, but I’m told that the opposite does happen quite often too.

“When people are free to do as they please, they usually imitate each other.

I was having a discussion with a Chinese friend about the number of people from each of our countries in the US when he made this comment, “There are lots of us, but with the number of guys you have in the cities of Texas and New York you could make up new cities all by yourselves”. He didn't of course use the exact same words (trust me their English sucks).

Anyway this got me thinking as to why do we go to the you-yess anyway.
I could think of two most common reasons.
1) Fun and 2) Money.

Those who already have the 2nd part do so in order to do attain the 1st part.
In either case we only make the journey upon suggestions from our previous generations who have been there and who blab about the ‘Great American Dream’ and the culture, the wonders etc. That might just be the reason why this dream will end soon.

People are sheep. There’s no point in denying it. Me, you and all of us are sheep who like to live in herds.

In the past, to earn the money needed to make it worth it, all you had to do was go to a ‘Good’ University and pass out with some ‘Good’ marks. With the exponential increase in our fellow country-men and the fact that not all jobs in the you-yess are for non-citizens, that bar has gone up. Now, just ‘Good’ doesn't seem to be enough and most realize this only when its too late.

For those of you who are not motivated by either of the above two reasons and are leaving your home country just to make use of the excellent teaching facilities over there. Thank you for your existence. Without you the world would be a shallow and bitter place to live in. Good luck to you.

One thing I have learned after spending a year and returning back to India is that the people, the warmth, the love and affection in our home country is very unique and can’t be replicated. I will miss it after this vacation is done.

Well to those of you who've liked this blog. I’m glad I could strike a chord.

To those of you who haven’t, well blogs are just suggestions and like Homer Simpson said, suggestions are like pants, they can always be ignored.

Friday, May 17, 2013

The Steyn Prestige

Every SRH match consists of three parts or acts.

The first part is called "The Pledge".

We show you something ordinary: a small total to chase.
We make you feel content with it and ofcourse you fall for it.

The second act is called "The Turn".

We send the ordinary something and make it do something extraordinary.
A Vihari or a Karan Sharma.

Now you're looking for the secret but you won't find it, because of course you're not really looking. You don't really want to know. You want to be fooled.

But you wouldn't clap yet. Because making something disappear isn't enough; you have to bring it back. That's why every magic trick has a third act, the hardest part, the part we call..

"The Steyn Prestige"

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Home

Glad to see the same old scenes
And the little house that means.
Memories of yesterday deep within,
Find its way to a new beginning.


Yes, it was nice to be away.
Plenty of new things to do and see,
But the old place seems to me
Just about the proper place to be.

Now the dance is over and when
the music dies down, and I realize
that I can't trade the world

for the feel of home.

I missed the warmth
and everything and everyone.
Everybody who pushed me to be
to everything I could ever hope to b
e.

It's glad to be back,
to the only place,
Where my heart truly belongs.

It's glad to be.. Home.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Mutiny


Everyone always told how it was
No one said why, though.                                                                                                                           
Nonetheless he knew it.

They, all of them, all of you,
were preaching to the choir.
He could tell you a million 
and one reasons why.

But dreams are bigger than this
And they won't be put out that easy
When everything's meant to be broken
You will have to fight through and rise.

The sane filtering
of old drums banging into a calm
had long since ached for a walkway,
to heal this noise once and for all.

Motionless figures by dark corners,
Stolen glances stand to tell it all
Treading narrow slippery edges,
Eager yet afraid to take the vital call.

But dreams are bigger than this
And they won't be put out that easy
When everything's meant to be broken
You will have to fight through and rise.

Two fortunes, each day I rise to,
Awake from restless dreams 
Whence I walked alone,
Among narrow streets of stone.


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Sachin Tendulkar: A tribute to God

Sachin Tendulkar whom his fans fondly refer to as ‘God’ has retired from ODIs having scored 18,426 runs with an average of 44.83. The inevitable day that everyone dreaded is finally here.

We will miss you, Sir. In all honesty, I thought you would end your career in ODIs right after the World Cup triumph, but to my delight you decided to continue. Incidentally your first and last games were against Pakistan. You have indeed come a full, befitting circle. When a cricketer retires we tend to draw comparisons and try giving a common platform. We live in a world that loves defining things and loathes ambiguity.

So, is Sachin better than Sir Vivian Richards or Sir Don Bradman?
Well, this is a question that I would not like to answer, your shoulders that bore the responsibility and expectations of millions do that in a fitting voice.

It was my father who first introduced me to this game. Back in 1996 when we were competing in the World Cup, I was wondering what the fuss was about, seeing everyone around me jumping up with joy. I did not clearly understand the game by then, but I recognised you then. Who wouldn't? Sachin Tendulkar in 1990s was the most famous word which anyone would identify with. If anyone asked me who my favorite cricketer was, I would immediately reply- Sachin. I was 5 then. I am 21 now. My reply hasn't changed in these 16 years. I am sure it won't change ever.

I have since seen you play in four World Cup tournaments. After the match-fixing debacle in the late nineties, the way you handled yourself in those difficult moments further increased my admiration for you. By the time 2003 World Cup was around, I was your full-fledged ardent follower. March 23rd, 2003's Hindu's Headlines read- Australians are not invincible: Ganguly. I didn't know the meaning of invincible at that point of time and that in a way began my tryst with English. Once I learned the meaning of the world I felt proud. I remember how you got out to the short pitched delivery bowled by Mcgrath. Disappointment was writ in your face. I still remember how you told in that squeaky voice of yours struggling to contain tears, after winning the Man of the Tournament- 'I would have been happier if my team had won.' That was an ultimate example of a team man.

There have been people who have called you selfish. Idiots, forgive them.
That post match presentation showed me the human you actually were. A rare scenario of voice breaking throughout your speech, unable to complete the sentences. You felt you let us down. You made us to believe that too. But the truth was, the rest of the team let you down. You single handedly saved India from embarrassments. You felt responsible for the team's failures. You are a team man. Screw people who say you're selfish, playing for records.
I want to apologize on behalf of every fan who let you down in this whole journey. For throwing stones that you changed into milestones. There have been times when some of us gave up hope on you and you have time and again proved us wrong. We spoke behind your back. There were times when your integrity was questioned. In reply, you have always thanked us and not even hurt us indirectly. If ever we had let you down, we are sorry.

In its tribute to you, the TIME magazine said:
"It seems while Time was having his toll on every individual on the face of this planet, he excused one man. Time stands frozen in front of Sachin Tendulkar. We have had champions, we have had legends, but we have never had another Sachin Tendulkar and we never will."

"When Sachin Tendulkar travelled to Pakistan to face one of the finest bowling attacks ever assembled in cricket, Michael Schumacher was yet to race an F1 car, Lance Armstrong had never been to the Tour de France, Diego Maradona was still the captain of a world champion Argentina team, (and) Pete Sampras had never won a Grand Slam," Time was quoted as saying on its website.

"When Tendulkar embarked on a glorious career taming Imran and company, Roger Federer was a name unheard of; Lionel Messi was in his nappies, Usain Bolt was an unknown kid in the Jamaican backwaters. The Berlin Wall was still intact, USSR was one big, big country, Dr Manmohan Singh was yet to 'open' the Nehruvian economy."

It is a strange feeling that I experience when someone talks or writes about you. I feel proud of everything that you have achieved so far- it makes me feel as though I have achieved all your records and milestones. I believe it is similar with all your fans in this nation whose self confidence grew every time they watched you play. You were that kind of a man. I am sorry not man, God.

I don’t know what I will do now. For a while, I contemplated quitting to watch ODI’s. But I know you wouldn’t want that. I am left with a feeling that we have not thanked you enough for your sacrifices. If you ask me, with all due respect ODI should retire. Or maybe like how in football, the player's jersey numbers are retired, the no.2 slot in the batting line up should be retired. These are crazy and impossible wishes right? Well, you did the impossible over and over again and made us wish as such which is why the fact that you finally won the World Cup gives me a deep sense of satisfaction. It would have been dishonorable for the game itself that its greatest ever student had not scaled its greatest ever peak.

I feel sad for all those who will not have a chance to watch you play, people who aren’t born yet will not know what they missed out on. It still doesn’t sink in, this is happening all too fast, I had always visualised how your retirement would be. You waving to the crowd, with all your team mates carrying you around in their shoulders, much like the 2011 World Cup. But I was not expecting this. The feeling hasn’t sunk in yet.

I will miss you Sachin. I will miss you in that blue jersey. I will miss being nervous when you are in your 90s. I will miss that fielder wearing his Indian cap and with child like enthusiasm stopping the ball from going to the boundary. I will miss you removing your helmet, looking up into the skies and raising your bat to the spectators. I will miss how every time you come out to play, there is a loud cheer from the crowd no matter which country you are playing in. The void you created in ODIs is going to be difficult to fill. Your retirement from ODI’s has in a way ended a part of my childhood. I would like to say more but words fail me now. The bat and the ball in the purest form of the game awaits you for one final spell.

Thank you and Good luck.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Regal Life sans a Regal Flaw

Laying in the dark, a storm roused in my head
Shattered all hopes of sanity that I had bred
Now dragging me towards a new realm,
Propelled by a force so vicious as to lose my calm.

I wake up with hysteria, to the dawn of memories
A flawed, bleeding vault of memories long lost
A mind without a ruler now facing oblivion's host
Gore-clad words too late to now regret.

Towering constructions with cracked frames,
Abolished theories and emerging ideals.
Bound to secrecy, sworn to wisdom, loyal to fret
Fret of failure, of uproar, and of things beyond,
Yet, most daunting,
that of parting from something dear.

Of delusions, of disharmony, of failings so trivial
These dark alleyways in my mind,
Once filled with regal peace.
Scream with moments of anguish and agony,
All coming to a drunken tale of treachery.

You coursed through my life,
A regal presence, a regal flaw.
From the day I hoped to be free,
Only to be left unable to flee.

Now the day has come to an end
And it's time for you to be a ghost.
A new beginning, a new tomorrow,
With a sense of eternal hope.

Forgotten are the quibbles,
Forgotten are the quarrels.
Sunshine has finally woken me,
To a royal life sans a regal flaw.