You live. You learn.

2014 was a fantastic year. An epic year.

A year where I haven’t regretted anything. Of course, there were decisions that I’ve sometimes second guessed. But it’s been backed with the maturity that taking bold decisions are a part of life. You win some and you learn some. That’s an important part of growing personally. The ability to take a few hits coupled with the understanding that these are small roadblocks and in a few years maybe even in a few months these wrong turns may not even matter. Sure, some of them might, but you can back yourself to tackle them.

Although the year just raced by, it’s been a year of consciousness and conscientiousness. I took the time to feel. I’ve tried to tackle my apathy. I’ve tried to draw in the reins on my stoic attitude and tried to apply a greater degree of self knowledge.

On the contrary I’ve also learned that my poorest decisions are taken out of emotion. You don’t take major life decisions when you’ve just been hit. You have some fine Scotch and sleep over it.

I’ve looked for progress not perfection. Which I believe is another turning point. Progress is encouraging and keeps you going. It’s as simple to understand as it is difficult to apply. Now I just focus on baby steps.

I’ve learned that it’s unfair to expect people to understand what you’re going through. Most people won’t. They can’t. Cause your situation is unique to you. The few that do, keep them close. Real close.

At the end of it all, it’s important to be hopeful. A new year brings hope. A chance to start over or an opportunity to pick up from where you left off. It’s a clean slate once again. That in itself is quite liberating.

I’m looking forward to 2015. To be present. To just be.

Image Credit: www.Etsy.com

Image Credit: http://www.Etsy.com

 

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The Devil of Dogma

“It’s so ironic you know.” What? I asked my friend taking my eyes of the skyline in the distance. He was wasted and we were slumped against the wall of the terrace. It was rather cold and windy. Winter was setting in. “People. We live in a world of bigots. I cannot accurately convey the frustration I feel at such incidents.”

“Then you might want to tell me what exactly you’re referring to?”

“Like the other day, this friend of mine put up this post. It was about cruelty to animals. You know how they put a sorry picture of a wounded dog or whatever, and say how inhumane it is to torture or kick them. You know that sort of shit. And the next thing you know she puts up some really appetizing pictures of these pork chops. Like that cute pigling was pampered at the pet spa before landing in her plate.”

“Guess maybe it rids them of the guilt of not doing anything although they care and helps them feel better about themselves?”, I said trying to block out images of cows hung upside down, being dismembered.

“Like even this moral policing you know” he went on “It’s quite ridiculous, wouldn’t you rather look at silhouettes of people kissing in public than watch people defecating in broad daylight during your morning commute?”

“I’d rather have neither, but I understand what you’re saying”

Image Credit: Sodahead.com

Image Credit: Sodahead.com

“And this friend of mine, she practically lives on McDonalds and taunts me that marijuana is someday going to kill me. Junk food and all that commuting, inhaling those poisonous gases coming out of those cars, is a far more effective way of buying a ticket into the other world than marijuana! Smoke will kill her too, just of a different kind.

It’s ironic how they unconsciously feed the monster they set out to destroy. People are quite fucked up like that. All hypocrites. They just have this fucked up habit of trying to appear all righteous and conveniently ignoring the true picture.”

My thoughts stalled and jammed momentarily on what he was saying. And he was right, my friend so haunted by talent as he was swallowed by addiction, my friend, he was right. His outlandish comparisons strangely made sense. And as I saw him inhale the white line of smack of that crumpled foil, with its subsequent crackle, I couldn’t help but smile at the irony, the irony of him bringing up the fucked up habits of others.

Image Credit: djbiggaboss.com

Image Credit: djbiggaboss.com

Why so Racist, India?

Racism for some reason has always been the subject of my interest. It’s amazing how the colour of your skin can play a vital role in determining your place in the world. It’s also funny how people can love or hate you based just on that.

We’ve seen the media rife with news about Michael Brown and Eric Garner recently. It’s sad that racism is still quite rampant in a country as progressive as the US. But it also got me thinking about racism in our own backyard. Would such a killing in India (which surely happens every now and then against the lower castes) even warrant a trial? Would the authorities in rural India even consider it a crime? Do they even consider them human? I don’t know. But I do know that a significant number of them are considered slaves. But that’s just rural India, right? Well, is it?

I grew up in the hip suburban town of Bandra which is also quite popular for its forward thinking citizens and all kinds of pop culture. But I still was occasionally subject to racist behaviour in school. Although, I don’t consider myself especially dark skinned just a tad bit tanned from all the outdoorsy activities, my classmates occasionally called me ‘Kaalya’, when they ran out of more intelligent retorts, almost as if they knew that it was a very effective cheap shot. The colour of one’s skin is a very personal matter and although fully aware and equipped with the knowledge that I was anything but black, it still did considerable but temporary damage to my self-esteem. I can’t imagine, what those kids who are actually dark skinned go through. They were teased all the time. And whatever happens to the girls. At such a young impressionable age it’s difficult to understand that the colour of your skin doesn’t make you any less of a person.

I was at Leopold Cafe around 4 years ago, the legendary Colaba bar, but I was treated with disdain. The staff was eager to serve all the Caucasian white customers but very pretty rude and impatient with me. This definitely wasn’t about a higher tip. They looked like hippies and weren’t particularly the high spending type. I looked like I could match their tip or higher perhaps. Alas, I wasn’t white. Indians treating Indians as second class citizens in India. Appalling! Again, happening in the heart of India’s arguably most modern city, in the very liberal Colaba.

Image Courtesy : The Hindu

Image Courtesy : The Hindu

To us, all black individuals are Africans, and only whites have nationalities. All ‘Africans’ are drug dealers and all whites are highly paid expats. Until recently most North East Indian folks were called Chinese or Chinky. Now a lot of them are being brutally beaten.

We want fair skinned celebrities and fair skinned grooms & brides. I barely see any dark skinned actors either on TV or the big screen. I barely see any fair skinned labourers or domestic helpers. We complained about the Americans whining they had an Indian as Miss America instead of lauding the fact that she became Miss America in spite of being dark skinned. Would a girl of her complexion even stand a chance like that in India?

A close friend of mine, routinely asks me a question whenever a dark girl passes by me. He asks me if I would date them. He asks me because she’s seemingly pretty. He doesn’t ask me these questions when a fair skinned cute girl walks by.

We may all be racist in some ways. But at least the Westerners seem more sensitised to it. We just don’t admit it. Maybe we don’t even know it. I think we just ignore it.

India’s is on the brink of being a formidable world power with the new government. We have start ups and business springing up all around. But the true progress of a nation should be judged by its mindset and outlook towards such things and not merely by the size of its economy.

Image Courtesy: http://paulhastings.me

Image Courtesy: http://paulhastings.me

Cause I will write a song for you

couple-playing-guitar-on-sofa-affection

 

When you’re feeling like a misfit,

And people are looking down on you,

You need to show some grit, even if for just a little bit,

Cause I will write a song for you.

 

When all your friends are gone,

And there are no aces in the cards you’ve drawn,

Just deal yourself another hand,

Cause I will write a song for you.

 

I know you’re not getting any younger,

You’re wondering how the years went by,

How time, is slowly catching up,

How the carefree life is such a far cry,

And its frightening, how all the warnings suddenly ring true,

But hold on babe,

Cause I will write a song for you.

 

When you’re happiness is fleeting,

And you’ve lost sight of the dreams you’ve been chasing,

So now you don’t know what to do,

And you don’t have the slightest clue,

But don’t just yet bid adieu,

Cause babe, I will write a song for you.

 

When your whole world is out of place,

And you just want to leave without a trace,

But please show yourself some grace,

Cause I will write a song for you.

 

When your darkest days are about to appear,

When you’re about to lose someone you loved so dear,

And you’ve cried so hard, you can’t shed another tear,

hold on babe,

Cause I will write a song for you.

 

When no one seems to love you,

And they see only you’re furrowed brow,

But not a hint of all that pain and sorrow,

Weary from facing another tomorrow.

You’re way too proud, but you secretly wish they knew,

But don’t worry babe, cause I will write a song for you.

 

When the world seems overbearing,

And your life seems like a lie,

Let it go with just a sigh, and run to me with arms open wide.

Cause babe, I’ve written this song just for you.

adorable-couple-cute-holding-hand-sunset-guitar