She over He.

There should never have been a battle in the first place.

Co-existence of men and women has been more like no existence for women. For years, women all over the world were, and are, being treated almost like a liability, fairly acknowledging that there were families who understood the meaning of the equal and opposite sex. If that weren’t the case, we wouldn’t have Enid Blyton, Louisa May Alcott, Amelia Earhart, Rani Lakshmibai and many others. But if I compare, our male compatriots have raced far ahead, since forever. The “STRONGER” RACE, they are after all. Oh yes, I say race because this is a bigger divide than any religion, caste, creed or colour.

He hits her. She accepts it. Either because she cannot leave her family in a lurch. Or she cannot leave him and go out in the world for fear of a worse fate awaiting her.

He expects her to take care of him and his family. She does. He never thanks her. Because he thinks it’s her duty to serve him. She wasn’t born to live for you.

He is waiting in line for a job. She is better. He gets the job. Why? Just like that.

He works hard. She works as hard. His pay cheque is heavier.

He looks at her greedily. She walks away thinking she must have done something wrong. Why? Because he says so.

He abuses her. She doesn’t. Not because she can’t, more so because she doesn’t want to fall to his standards.

Yes, he is stronger. But she is the one who lives in constant fear of crossing the wrong path. She is the one who sees her dreams getting quashed. She is the one who thinks sobbing through the night is easier than defying the men in her life. She is the one who has to see her girl child being killed. She is the one who has to bear the wrath of the child she bore. She is the one who has to bear the sting of words glorifying all that she cannot do or rather all that he wouldn’t let her do. She is the one who gets named whether she’s outgoing, introvert, shy, modern, intelligent, bossy, beautiful, or rather because she exists. She lives through it all.

But, he is the one who’s stronger.

And to what delightful use they put their strength! To hurt her, hit her, stop her, abuse her, rape her. And the men who abstain from pouncing on women? They stare. They share. They sympathize. They blame. But what do they do? They ask, what can we do?

In India, women’s empowerment is almost like the new fad, with corporates like Tata Tea doing a better job of portraying it through their advertisements than the descendant of Rajiv and Sonia Gandhi has been able to in the innumerable speeches he has made (the interview with Arnab Goswami being the key highlight of his highs and lows!) or the decade long term of the UPA Government has done. Pardon my naivety! The UPA Government had sanctioned a 1000 crore budget for the safety of women across the country in the year 2012-13. Mark my words. Sanctioned, not disbursed. Because, sadly, none out of the 1.2 billion people in India could come up with a plan good enough to be accorded funds out of the 1000 crore basket.

All day, each day, she strives to make a mark. To be better than she was yesterday. And someday we will coexist. Because he will realize that she would never treat him as badly as he treated her.

Is she the one?

“There will be happy times. Sad times too. Times when she’ll be angry. Times when she’ll be fun. Times when you’ll know, she’s the one!

She may not hear you always, but she loves listening to you. She sometimes doesn’t stop talking, and at times she has nothing to say to you.

Every time you see her smile, promise yourself you’ll never let it fade. No matter how bad matters get, if you are with her, goodbye she’ll never bade.

She can very well carry on her life without you, but she still chooses to keep you in hers. Shower her with love and care, a word of affection here and there, and you’ll see her be forever yours.”

To those who’ve found the one, don’t let her go!

Celebrating Womanhood? You decide.

“… Her heels clicking on the tarmac, the street lights lighting her path ahead, talking over the phone while walking down the deserted by-lane to reach the safe havens of her home, she wished her friend a “Happy Women’s Day” and kept the line. Another 5 minutes and she would be home, she thought. She heard an oncoming bike and looked sideways to see if there was space to weave through the footpath occupiers. Finding none, she continued walking ahead, expecting the biker to be careful enough not to hurt her. But the bike came and stopped just near her, surprising her and causing her foot to twist while she fell on the footpath. She looked up angrily to see two pairs of eyes leering at her. The anger gave way to fear. The screeching bike had woken some of the beggars and within seconds, which felt like hours, one of those young lads came to help her get back on her feet. Several of them came and stood beside her. Her phone vibrated. An incoming message, announcing  ‘A 3-day special discount in celebration of Women’s Day.’ …”
 
Yes, there’s inequality. Yes, there’s commercialization. Yes, there’s tyranny. Yes, there’s irony.
 
But, above all, there’s hope.
 
Happy Women’s Day.

 

Can love feel incomplete?

In this digital age of love, is it too much to ask if I want your hand in mine and not my phone…

If I want you in front of me and not my laptop…

If I want to have your favorite chocolate with you and not just send you pictures of it…

If I want to see that wink on your face, not just the emoticon you send…

If I want you to spend  my happy moments with me, not hear about it later…

If I want to call you by your name, not just look at my phone flashing it…

If I want to see you reading this, and not just imagine you breathing deeply…

If I want to see that smile on your face, and not just hear it over your call…

Is it too much?

 

Till death do us part…

Exactly a year ago, not everything ended well for Reeva Steenkamp, girlfriend of famous Paralympic Oscar Pistorius, the Posh and Becks couple of South Africa.

She was found dead in the arms of her love. Oscar looked shattered. Their place was a mess, his clothes blood-soaked, the bathroom door broken, her body riddled with bullets, cricket bats and guns lying around. The world was divided. Still is. Some say it was premeditated. Some say it was accidental.

Twist of fate.

I say it was sad. Sad for Reeva, Oscar, their families, friends. Sad for the ones who had to closely witness something so heart-wrenching on a day of love. Sad for the innumerable people who lost their inspiration in Oscar that day. Which man in his right frame of mind would premeditate the murder of his girlfriend in a manner he knew would point back right at him? And a man with Oscar’s courage and mental strength, which got him game ready to compete against able-bodied athletes at the Olympics, definitely has the right frame of mind.

But I am not defending him. He has lost a lot. And so has Reeva.

He his love. She her life.

Maybe love for Oscar will never be the same again. This day definitely won’t.

Maybe he will learn to live with what happened that day. With what he did. With the life he took away.

Maybe Reeva will forgive him for what happened. Maybe already has. Maybe he knows. Maybe he’ll come to terms with it.

A lot of maybe’s, a lot of hope, a lot of strength, a lot of empathy.

For the way things ended. For them. Between them.

Not everything ends well…

Picture Courtesy — http://healingoutcomes.com

Near… Yet So Far.

You do not acknowledge it,
You may not recognize it,
We’ve been this way for really long,
Maybe us being happy together was too much of a misfit!
 
We’re as close as blood relations can get,
At one time, for my actions, you would vet,
Bonds shattered, smiles dashed,
To leave us, you’re all set.
 
I may not be able to say it aloud,
Yet my heart keeps beating out loud,
To wish you a really happy life ahead,
Wedding bells and chimes the only sound.
 
 

R.I.P English

All through these years, I’ve never been in favour of belittling others or ridiculing others for their wobbly hold of the English language. Primary reason being, these people are aware of their weakness and are often trying to get past it.

 

However, in the past few days, I’ve come across mispronunciations and wrong usage of words, with such shameful confidence, I cannot help but put it down in the pages of social networking history!

 

I’ll cite the best of the lot:

 

— I heard a guy say on the microphone, while he was on stage, at the podium and in view of the entire audience, use the word important as an adjective for himself. Sadly, he silenced the letter ‘R’ in the word important. Rest, is up to you to understand!

 

— While explaining duties to volunteers at some event, one of the persons handling the event, said “Be benevolent to the guests.” Sounds good, doesn’t it? Not when you hear him say the same thing more than four times! Just using BIG words does not make you good at the language. Sometimes, words like respectful, helpful, cooperative also help.

 

— Then, he misses out the ‘damn’ from the phrase ‘any God-damn thing’. Although, I appreciate your willingness to not use the word ‘damn’ in front of women, the phrase ‘any God  thing’, sounds a little more than incomplete.

 

— Saving the best for the last, where a guy used the word ‘eligible’ for (drum roll! Ta da ta da dum!) ‘liable’. So what he said was something like, “If anything goes wrong, remember you will be eligible for it!”

 

Need I say more, folks? Let’s keep silence for a minute, please. R.I.P English.

 

 

 

God’s Grace!

As I stand here stranded,
My stomach churning with pain,
Of sadness and disbelief,
I wait for the light,
To carve my path out of the tunnel.

I cannot speak to the souls around me,
They won’t understand one bit,
They have their backs turned to me,
Leaving me all alone.

Man is a social being we say,
Yet here I am,
With so many around me,
No one to cup my tears.

My dwindling faith now lies,
In the hopes of your greatness,
Waiting for the unfathomable and immeasurable,
Strength of your mere presence.

As you throw your light,
The darkness around flutters away,
I notice that the backs to me,
Were to protect me from the horrors of the way.

As I wipe my tears,
I see the gnashes they’ve suffered,
And I realize I’ll pray next time,
For what you think I need, rather than what I think I want.

#RahmanIshq! – The A.R.Rahman concert in Calcutta!

Yesterday evening, the God himself descended in Calcutta, armed with his instruments, the rains signaling his arrival and ceasing at his descent, darkness enveloping a crowd of thousands waiting for a mere glimpse, uproar at his first syllable, adrenalin rushing through the throbbing veins at the first hint of music. That was A.R. Rahman at Calcutta!

What happened on the stage in the next few hours was magic. Maybe see through at times, mesmerizing mostly. But what happened in the crowd around us was a different matter altogether. That too was just so out of the world!

Bang ahead of us was a couple who just couldn’t get enough of each other. She seemed to be eating all the time, attracting the bees-like-hawkers (who were allowed to roam freely in the entire stadium, selling everything from ‘cheeps’, lemon ‘peshaal’ signaling special lemon tea, cool water and badaam and were guilty of the criminal offence of interjecting the maestro’s music with their cries of product advertising!!). Her beau, oblivious to how much he was spending, couldn’t seem to get himself to concentrate on the stage, is all I can say.

One row ahead of us to our left, sat a trio of the most boring young guys I have ever come across. They didn’t clap for more than 3 seconds at a stretch, with gaps of at least half an hour between each such exercise. It almost felt like they had been punished  and were made to sit through the entire event. Even if Rahman himself had come to them, they wouldn’t have uttered a cheer or enthusiastic hoot! I just hope they had free tickets to the show, because otherwise they’ve genuinely wasted their bucks!

And behind was a family with such levels of intelligence, I should have congratulated them. The boy was shouting to his dad for chewing gum in the middle of a sufi song when the whole crowd was swaying in the musical magic. Once, another one of them was completely unaware of the fact that it was their cell phone which was ringing loudly. And at one time when the sound fell really low due to some technical glitch for a few seconds, this man shouted from nearly the last row of the stadium “Raise the volume!”. Seriously, Sir? You really think the organizers can hear you from this far? His voice decibels barely managed to reach the next 15 rows of people, I think!

When Rahman played out his crowd-favourite Jai Ho!, this man next to me, stood in the attention stance. I wish he knew Jai Ho is NOT our National Anthem. He could have crooned it aloud and fist pumped the air a little. But alas!

It felt as if the people around me were saving all their enthusiasm for the Goddess Durga! ‘Cuz the other blocks in the stadium could definitely be heard on the stage!

That’s the other side of RahmanIshq!

Reporting directly from the stands, signing off for the day!

I found my Twin Soul!

Me : Found this beautifully worded quote on the internet —
“I would like to be the air that inhabits you for a moment only. I would like to be that unnoticed and that necessary.”

Mr. Sensible : That is so romantic!

Me (Thinking deeply, frowning) : I would say these are subtle words portraying underlying obsession.

Mr. Sensible : Obsession is not the correct word here.

Me : I wouldn’t like to be that important or necessary in anyone’s life. Of course it would be flattering to be that important.
But I would feel suffocated after some time and would want to move on.

Me (adding hastily) : I’m sorry to ruin the romance of the words!

Mr. Sensible : (disappointed and angry) Well, you actually did!

Unsure, I sent it to another friend who is in, or we could say, working on a relationship.

Me : Found this beautifully worded quote on the internet —
“I would like to be the air that inhabits you for a moment only. I would like to be that unnoticed and that necessary.”

Twin Soul : Why would I like to be necessary and unnoticed for someone else?

And I’m jumping with joy! I found my twin soul!

PS : Mr. Sensible is so good looking and understanding and charming (& sensible, of course), he would easily find several women wanting to be the air for him!

Raw emotions. Inked.

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