November 30, 2010

All Over Again.

Obsess over one to the point of being haunted by one's form and soul.
Day in and day out. Wait. Pine. All In servile gratification.
All in the hope for the beginning of that never-before-experienced journey.

“It feels so right now, hold me tight,
Tell me I'm the only one,
And then I might,
Never be the lonely one.”

Prayers. Agony. Remorse and Regret.
And then move on.

Turn back to realize the intensity of the darkness lurking inside the cave that was just abandoned.
And what about a similar darkness in the one that has been stepped in right now?

They are equals in ways, aren’t they?

Results declared.
I fare miserably.
I mean almost miserably. Fifty Three.

Upset. But Relieved.
Parents almost glad. Supportive, in ways.
There is no way I could have done better with the fort night long preparation.

If you did well, you can be happy for yourself. Check me, even I’m happy for you.
As for me, I’m just waiting to fly away. From this nest, with the horrible pokey-twigs to one with delicate cotton-boll-lining.

Or is even that a mirage?

November 27, 2010

:) or :(

Among all my friends, some are falling in love, and for others, there are heartbreaks. Some are so happy while others are breaking down trying to deal with issues of their own. How helpless can someone get at times? Two friends got together today, after days of deliberating whether the question should be asked or not. And then there are some coping with rejection, a few more dealing with break-ups and heartbreaks, and some residing on an a different plane of disaster altogether...

November 18, 2010

Ten Lions

Ten lions have overstayed their welcome.

Just another of my great random fixtures, they have received more recognition than they deserved. However, this piece shall be used in remembering the kings, always.

November 17, 2010

As I keep growing older, I realize all the
people I have bullied or got cornered throughout school,
have been such distinct individuals and in some ways, admirable in their
exclusivity, in having been the misfits they were.

November 9, 2010

Irony or Coincidence?

My name is one glaring example of an irony. 'Ritwik' means one who performs 'yajnas' in every 'ritu' to please the Gods above. 'Goswami' classifies as amongst highest-order Vaishnav Brahmins, who are ideally supposed to dedicate their lives to religious ceremonies. My parents are semi-agnostics, with no staunch devotion toward idol-worship, and both my sister and I are staunch atheists. This can be referred to as 'double deviation' to the rule that names-should-define-personality.

The other day, at Rohan's birthday party, both Rohan and I had red-tees on, and were posing for photographs with napkins with the letters S,F and I on them. I vote for SFI in college, but am far from being an activist. The following conversation that ensued is as follows:
Me: This is the first time I am coming out about my orientation.
Subholina(sitting beside me) : Really? Don't you keep screaming " I'm gay" all the time, everywhere?
Me: Let me rephrase that. This is the first time I'm coming out about my political-orientation.
Subholina: I see !

Ironically, the political body adverse to SFI in college identifies itself as I.C.

Ajju, Ikshaku and I were at Aqua Java a week back, and the room was jam-packed with weird-fashion sporting young adults smoking hookah. Ajju was showing to us videos of his Great Fall at the Ice-skating-rink in Shimla, the fall that had caused a leg-fracture. He said, at the Mock-Award-Ceremony at his college,this fall had been named as the 'Best Fall'. Ajju also showed us videos of manufactured-fall-situations that had to be created just to create other nominees for the 'Best Fall' category as it is never fair to crown something as winner when there is no competition. He was almost lamenting that his fall did not really have much of a competition and the win came easy to him. Right then, one of the semi-tripping, semi-dazed dudes in the room tripped and fell. Right over my legs and the couch beside me. AND HOW! The fall came in five parts. Each time he'd fall a bit, try to regain composure, and then fall further down. All the couches toppled over, as did Ajju's laptop, playing the 'Fall' nomination videos. Pure Irony,or a Huge Coincidence is for you to decide.

Originally, I had intended to cite only these three examples in this post. However, as the creation of this post was in progress, I found myself engaged in a Facebook-chat conversation with the star-senior Aishani Roy from Oxford University(Doesn't THAT sound magnificent?). We discussed how both of us would have like Prof. Amitava Chatterjee as the new Vice Chancellor of Presidency University, and how the new VC has the same name as our preferred candidate minus a 'Va'. She is called Amita Chatterjee. "What an irony!", Aishanidi said. And this conversation to happen right when this post was in creation, as if only to add an element to the post, was a huge coincidence.

This world truly amazes me, all the time.

November 5, 2010

Dilwaali Diwaali

There is a dark gully visible from my window. Throughout the year, when the roads are dark at night, the degree of visibility in that particular gully is determined by the extent of waxing or waning the moon exhibits then. The reverse holds as well, and there is this half-finished abandoned-building of a project right across that gully. I have mentioned this building several times before. How certain guys hanging out on the rooftop remind me of Chandler and Joey, and how the moonlight incident on the unused, jutting-out concrete cables makes me poetic, Concrete-jungle moon-sparks et al, and also once about the Blue Windows on the finished portions of the building. Tonight, however, is not quite like the other days of the year. On the occasion of Diwali, there are heavy laces and frills of light wrapped around all the buildings lining the gully, for the purpose of beautification. And though, just like certain Elizabethan literature heroines, these laces and frills seem to suffocate the buildings, the end of beautification has been amazingly addressed. Also, Kali Pujo is the only festival celebrated at the tiny little club in the immediate paara, so there’s a typical Orange-white temple-shaped pandal erected in the grassless field between the gully and our complex. So my room is lit up, red, green and blue. The ‘tuni-bulbs’ lining the box-grills of my window act to the effect, and if only I was a little stoned, my room would have felt like a live hard-rock café, for I even have Vintage Rock from the 60’s and 70’s and some really mellow Sikkimese music playing on the laptop.
Tonight, incidentally, is All Souls’ Day. Bangalis refer to it as Bhoot Chaturdashi. Souls descend on the Western Hemisphere on Hallowe’en. And then their Eastern Counterparts follow suit on Bhoot Chaturdashi. The minute graveyards at Kumardhubi might come awake tonight. Mrs. Jean McGinn, my beloved kindergarten teacher, she might come to visit her son, who threw her out of home, forcing her to eke out an embarrassing living out of rendering private tuitions even after retirement. I hope her soul comes back to avenge the injustice meted out to her. I remember how she was the first person to have put me on a pedestal of importance, by making me class monitor in kindergarten. I have been dethroned from and reinstated into that pedestal a lot of times since, but she made me feel important for the first time I remember, so that love for her, that reverence, I can still feel, FRESH inside me.I didn’t plan this note out; it is just taking a shape of its own. I remember how, before the first day of kindergarten, when Ma brought home news about Mrs Mc Ginn being my class teacher from the orientation program, I had sobbed for an entire day, out of fear arising out of having been allotted the scariest teacher, ‘who threw dusters to burst her students’ skulls’, in the school as Class Teacher. Now when I look back in retrospect, how unfounded and baseless the worrying of that afternoon seems.

The other time, when on Bhoot Chaturdashi morning in 2002, we landed up at the Hazaribagh National Park, and Buiya and I hatched plans of staying back at the National Park, at one of the cottages without electricity, (because we had no such prior plans, there were no proper-cottages booked for us), and how excited we got at the prospect of being visited by spirits from the dead as also Indian Tigers and jackals in the same night, and how disturbed and miserable we had been left feeling, when our parents didn’t approve of the idea, and rejected such a brilliant adventure just because they were worried about the mosquitoes. Both Buiya and I had refused to speak through the entire journey back.
The Diwali of 2005, the year when a blast had ripped the heart of Dilli just before the festival of lights, and our Tarumitra Nature Convention at St. Patrick’s, Asansol, where we planted trees, and socialized with people from other schools, and marveled at the sheer size of the Boys’ Dorms at St. Vincent’s, and the wonderful nature walks, the magnitude of the combined complex of Patrick’s, Vincent’s and Loyola. Also, Francisco Almeida, his attempts at teaching me those little nuances of Portuguese, and the way I was taken into the Anglo Indian Dinner Ceremony, long after the others had made the phone-calls back home, and had returned to the dorms and taken to their beds, and how I saw the art works by the Christian Brothers, and how impressed I had been at the sheer creativity and talent of the young artists. Also, discovering the half-dead rat-baby on the corridors, and handing it over to the Big Man, the planner of the event. The staying up nights with Alok, and dozing through the seminars and sessions the next day. And how Mrs. Sriparna Choudhury, perhaps the calmest and sweetest lady, and teacher ever, passed away to a minor accident a fortnight after this, and how shocking the incident was for the entire neighborhood-town.
Diwali in Jharkhand was so cold, snug and cute. Diwali meant November, and Chhath, and the men and women walking towards the Chhat-Ghat in colorful, fluorescent sarees and translucent shirts, and the huge assortment of gifts to the Sun God they all carried on their heads.Chhat would also mean ‘thekwas’. Every building was lined with diyas, and tuni bulbs, and the temperatures would hover between 9 degrees and 12 degrees, and even then there would be invitations from every house in the colony for the ‘parsad khaana’. Since every house housed a patient of my father or a student of my mum, there would always be the extra respect associated with being Daktarshaab or Medam’s son. A lot of this I have left behind forever. There’s no returning to any of it. But I have tonight. Suddenly now, I’m wishing there wasn’t so much light flooding in through the window. Maybe I’d be visited by a friendly soul. Or maybe Peeves. Mayukh reminds me of Peeves, it is funny really. Tomorrow is KaliPujo/Diwali 2010. Another one in the history of my life, to be fondly recalled later maybe?

November 3, 2010

Frigid it is no longer...

I have been intrinsically very selfish. I will admit, that deep down, I do not think that the fault has been mine, but I feel guilty nevertheless. I have been taking an easier exit out of sticky life situations. One of ignorance, of faking unawareness and a façade of nonchalance. I have pretended not to care when I have seen others capsize and sink into a whirlpool, and have walked by, always assuming that the one gasping for breath and reaching out for a support wouldn’t want ME to be the one’s support. Internal self-loathing and other-corollaries of such insecurities prevail here. Excuses, the one might complain, and there’s no way I can blame the one. What if I never successfully allowed the bifurcation of mind and body, heart and soul, and never looked at myself from the external point of view? What if the one(s) always truly wanted me there, as now I know from their sporadic claims, and I never reached out, for fear that my hands might be seen as dirty and not accepted as an aid, as a support. Calculative I have been for long, but these those who love me, and have stayed by me for this long, can I not, for once, give in, and extend my hand to them? They need me, and I them, and with a bit more of integration, I think my mud specks can join in with their delta-of-cooperation? The past is the past, but it is never too late to begin anew. Some questions I shall never find answers to, but some insurgencies have already begun to die down and give way to greater peace. I think it is time to open up, and to let in the light. The sun has come, and I know, it is going to be alright. It might have been away for years, but I’m ready to welcome it with a grand homecoming.

October 6, 2010

Amaake amaar moto thaaktey daao.

Continuing with my habit of translating songs that manage to become my obsession, I have translated the song 'Amaake amaar moto thaakte daao' from the soundtrack of the Bangla-film 'Autograph', into English. I have hardly stayed true to the pace and rhythm of the original, and have interpreted the atypical and unpredictably refreshing lyrics in my own way, and have tweaked a few words here and there for the sake of rhyme. Tell me if you like it. OR NOT.

Amaake amaar moto thaakte daao,
Aami nijeke nijer moto guchhiye niyechhi…
Jeta chhilona, chhilona, sheta na pawaii thaak,
Shob pele noshto jibon…

Tomar ei duniya’r jhapsha aalo,
Kichhu shondhe’r guro howa kaancher moto,
Jodi ude jete chaao tobe gaa bhashiye daao,
Doorbiney chokh rakhbo na na na na na na…

Ei jahaaj maastul chharkhaar,
Tobu golpo likhchhi panchbar,
Aami rakhte chaai na aar taar,
Kono raat dupoorer abdaar,
Tai cheshta korchhi Barbar,
Shaantrey paar khonjar…

Kokhono akash beye chup kore,
Jodi neme ashe bhalobasha khub bhore,
Chokh-bhanga ghumey tumi khunjona aamay,
Aashe paashe aami aar nei.

Amaar jonyo aalo jelo na keu,
Aami manusher shomudrey gunechhi dheu,
Ei station er chattorey hariye gechhi,
Shesh train e ghorey phirbo na na na…

Tomar roktey aachhe shopno joto,
Taara chhutchhey raatridin nijer moto,
Kokhono shomoy pele ektu bhebo,
Aanguler phankey aami koi?

Hisheber bhirey aami chaaina chhutey,
Joto shukno peyajkoli fridge er sheetey,
Aami obelar daal-bhaatey phuriye giyechhi,
Gelasher joley bhaashbo na na na…

Let me exist within my own,
I have reconciled myself with my reality.
That which has stayed unaccomplished,
Let it stay that way,
Excesses mar sanity.

This nebulous light of your numb world,
Feels like shattered-glass fragments of dusk.
Should desires of flight provoke you, fly,
But my binocular vision
Shall not follow you soar,
No, not even a chance…

This voyage of mine, and a mangled mast,
I pen my tale, in its fifth cast.
I shall give way no more,
To your requests, in their late-night rust.
So I try and repeat,
And swim through this distrust.

Whenever love seeps through your sky,
And its layers, in the hours of a violet dawn,
Even as soft-slumber nests on your lids,
Do not look around for me, I’m gone.

Do not bother to switch on the lights,
My vessel’s capsized among these waves of men.
I am lost forever within these station-walls.
I will not take the last train home, ever again.
No, not even a chance…

All your dreams housed in your veins,
They rush forth and back to your heart,
Should time permit, ask yourself sometime,
Why, from between your fingers, did I depart?

In this calculative, humdrum world I don’t
Sympathize with the beans shriveled up in the fridge.
I shall not float around any more in your water-glass.
(For)I begin and end with the lunch-porridge.
No, not even a chance…

September 26, 2010

So after five days of torment by a savage fever, last night at 11.15pm, I was zapped out of every will to move, talk, even to keep my eyes open. Every food tasted like chemical, every breath felt like fire. There was nobody at home, and I felt like dying. So, I randomly left my bed, and in a last bid to make myself feel good, switched the TV on. Channels 15 to 56. PURE TRASH! I felt like throwing up. Then on Sony Pix, PARIS JE T'AIME, and well, it has been 16 hours, and I've been well. No fever.

September 21, 2010

We Are A (Happy) Family

So once upon a time in this forest lived an elephant-ess that was elected the Mother Mary of the forest, and so in order to stay true to The Bible, she had to stay a virgin. This meant that no baby-elephants from Mommy Elephant. So, she decided to adopt two 'pink' children. One was a shy Pink Pig, the other was a boisterous Pink Pokemon called Clefairy.

One normal day in this family:

Clefairy: Hey Piggy, I've written a poem for you. Wanna listen?
Piggy: Yeah, sure.
Clefairy: (Opera-singer-esque sing-song voice)
Piggy on the railway, picking up stones
Down came an engine and broke Piggy's bones
Oh! said Piggy, "That's not fair!"
Ah! said the engine driver, "I don't care".
Piggy: *starts wailing* Mommy Mommy look, Clefairy is teasing me by reciting that old poem again.
Mommy Elephantess: Clefairy, you repeat that one more time, and you shall go to bed without supper.
Clefairy: You always take her side, Mom
Elpehantess: Tum dono hi mere aankhon ke sitaarein ho.
Main tum dono se ek jaisa pyaar karti hoon.

Moral of the story: This is a happy-family story. Rare, in today's world.

September 18, 2010

Right now I realized, some things are meant to be never grown out of. It is 5.40 am, and the sight of the rain and the dark-gray sky outside my window takes me back to the vision. I realize that the sight of it raining shall always take me back to the same vision. The vision of the hill outside my window. The heavy downpour, and the lush greenery. And me lying on my bed. Paradise within my hands' reach. Smell of the wet-hill, aroma of childhood. Forever, and ever.Always.

This isn't clinging on. This is identity.

September 14, 2010

Meow Meow.

My blood group is ‘O’, but of the negative rhesus. So, according to Indian films and television, in case I happen to be crushed under a speeding vehicle or be diagnosed with blood-cancer, even if I am rushed to “the hospital” pretty early into the emergency, I shall never find any donors, and only when I am at the lowest depth of the health-deterioration trench, shall there be a ‘miracle’, and I will have a long-lost blood-relative or a holier-than-thou secret well-wisher stepping in to rescue me. There is a very high probability again that nothing of that sort shall happen and I shall recede and recede lower into the trench until finally the messengers of Yamah come for me to row me across the Vaitarna.

I personally know some ‘celebrities’. Of limited talent and caliber, but with fan-bases larger than credible actors like Rebecca Hall or Churni Ganguly. Say, Mr. X is a ‘celebrity’ I know. Now, suppose he is really accomplished at his music, and has noteworthy potential in that field. Instead of honing his existing skills and becoming a master at his craft, Mr. X almost always chooses the path to easy popularity, partying around a lot, with good-looking Ms. Y’s and Ms. Z’s wanting-and-waiting to be flaunted as his arm-candies. Then Mr. X acts in neo-intellectual indie films, which no one understands, with full realization that these films could be his only chance at fulfilling the essential ‘philm-ka-hero’ dreams. And he also balances a lot else, small-time modeling, painting, penning B-grade and/or unoriginal literature. For a short while, he is everywhere. He is blinded by the dazzle of the momentary popularity, but he loses touch with his own craft. And pretty soon, he is banished to obscurity as, well, he has been ignoring his own craft and is an epitome of mediocrity at everything else he dabbles at. Thus occurs the Death of an Artist.

I have been singing myself to sleep of late. Sometimes celebratory songs, sometimes lachrymal-gland-stimulating ones, they vary according to my mood. It helps me to be at peace with myself. It might sound like a hilarious concept, but you should try it, especially if you are sad.

Okay, random banter of the day ends here. Will continue later.

August 27, 2010

Most Memorable Bollywood Onscreen Couples Of The 00's - III (2007-2009)


Irrfan Khan-Tabu(The Namesake) Not stirctly Bollywood, but in this Mira Nair film, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth from 'Maqbool' came back as Ashoke and Ashima Ganguli.

Amitabh Bachchan-Tabu(Cheeni Kum)

Dharmendra-Nafisa Ali(Life In A Metro)

Irrfan Khan-Konkona Sensharma(Life In A Metro)The two found a way into our hearts through their humor. Monty, despite being a cameo, retains his place in our hearts as the most affable of the ensemble cast.Shruti isn't too interested initially, but things work out resulting in a finale with Monty's "Aami eshey gechhi!" Cute.

R. Madhavan-Vidya Balan(Guru)Poignant, very.

Abhishek Bachchan-Aishwarya Rai(Guru)Akshay-Katrina could make sparks only in Humko Deewana Kar Gaye. Similarly, Abhishek-Aishwarya made sense only in Guru.

ShahRukh Khan-Deepika Padukone(Om Shanti Om)

Shahid Kapur-Kareena Kapoor(Jab We Met)If the 90'shad Raj and Simran, the 00's had Geet and Aditya. And Anshuman :P

Kunnal Kapoor-Konkona Sensharma(Laaga Chunari Mein Daag; Aaja Nachle)


Hrithik Roshan-Aishwarya Rai(Jodha-Akbar) The two good-looking crooks from Dhoom-2 came back as Azeem-o-shaan,Akbar and Mallika-e-Hindostan, Jodha Bai. Pure love ensued.

Ranbir Kapoor-Minissha Lamba(Bachna Ae Haseeno)

Ranbir Kapoor-Deepika Padukone(Bachna Ae Haseeno)

Imran Khan-Genelia D'Souza(Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na)

Imran Khan-Manjari Fadnis(Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na)

Naseeruddin Shah-Ratna Pathak Shah(Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na)

Arjun Rampal-Shahana Goswami(Rock On...)

Abhishek Bachchan-Priyanka Chopra, John Abraham-Priyanka Chopra and Abhishek Bachchan-John Abraham[:P] (Dostana)

ShahRukh Khan-Anushka Sharma(Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi)


Abhay Deol-Mahie Gill
Abhay Deol-Kalkie Koechlin
(Dev D)

Effective and identifiable modern-day take on Devdas. Terrific screen presence of lesser known Deol, Koechlin and Gill as today's Devdas, Chandramukhi and Parvati.

Saif Ali Khan-Deepika Padukone(Love Aaj Kal)

Saif Ali Khan-Giselle Monteiro/Rishi Kapoor-Neetu Singh(Love Aaj Kal) People expected more sizzle out of Saif and Deepika. But Veer and Harleen weaved their own magic in the muhallas of Delhi and by the Ganges in Kolkata

John Abraham-Katrina Kaif(New York) The LAST SCENE justifies the inclusion of this one.

Shahid Kapur-Priyanka Chopra(Kaminey)

Ranbir Kapoor-Konkona Sensharma(Wake Up Sid) Aisha Banerjee is an ambitious, intellectual Calcutta girl. Siddhath Mehra is the typical laidback Mumbaikar. How do the two get along? Wake Up Sid shows us beautifully.

Ranbir Kapoor-Katrina Kaif(Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahaani) Box-office King and Queen come together.

August 25, 2010

Most Memorable Bollywood Onscreen Couples Of The 00's - II (2004-2006)


Akshay Kumar-Priyanka Chopra(Aitraaz)This one was all about the animal-instincts.

Vivek Oberoi-Aishwarya Rai(Kyun... Ho Gaya Na...)For many they did not work, For me they did. Successful or not, memorable and debated for sure. Also, Aao Na...

Saif Ali Khan-Rani Mukherjee(Hum Tum)

Irrfan Khan-Tabu(Maqbool) Our desi Macbeth and Lady Macbeth.

Abhishek Bachchan-Rani Mukerji(Yuva)Lallan and Shashi,slum-dwellers both of them, redefined the word 'Chemistry'.

Abhay Deol-Ayesha Takia(Socha Na Tha)The beginning of Imtiaz Ali. AND Abhay Deol. Lovable. Believable. A Classic by now.

ShahRukh Khan-Preity Zinta(Veer-Zaara)

Ajay Devgan-Aishwarya Rai(RainCoat)

Emraan Hashmi-Mallika Sherawat(Murder)


Amitabh Bachchan-Rani Mukerji(Black)This might be a controversial mention, but the tenderness and the interdependence between Michelle and Mr.Sahay qualify for one of the most poignant Big-screen experiences for the Bolly-buff in the 00's.

Abhishek Bachchan-Rani Mukerji(Bunty Aur Babli)Rural, rustic, FUN. Delectable.

Shiney Ahuja-Chitrangda Singh) and Kay Kay Menon-Chitrangda Singh(Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi)

John Abraham-Priyanka Chopra(Karam)

Jimmy Shergill-Minissha Lamba(Yahaan)The mountains and valleys of Kashmir. One taboo love. And a haunting music score. Kabhi kabhi aas-paas chand rehta hai

Saif Ali Khan-Vidya Balan(Parineeta)

Shah Rukh Khan-Rani Mukerji(Paheli) The quaint desert of Rajasthan and allthatresplendence. Visual poetry at its best.

Rajpal Yadav-Rituparna Sengupta(Main Meri Patni Aur Woh)

Sanjay Suri-Purab Kohli(My Brother Nikhil)The first time that homosexuality was not an issue of ridicule.


Akshay Kumar-Katrina Kaif(Humko Deewana Kar Gaye) Their first outing together. Also, the only one in which the chemistry worked.

Ajay Devgan-Kareena Kapoor(Omkara) He was Othello, she was Desdemona. It was Uttar Pradesh, but together they worked magic in a premise removed from the original Shakespearean era.

Shah Rukh Khan-Preity Zinta,Shah Rukh Khan-Rani Mukerji and Abhishek Bachchan-Rani Mukerji(Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna) Nobody expected KANK from Karan Johar. Reason they were pissed off after the movie. Also, this one had every grave situation gift-wrapped in a lot of glitz and glamorous chutzpah,so things looked fake in parts. But there was no denying the chemistry and currents among all the leads.

Rahul Bose-Mallika Sherawat(Pyar Ke Side Effects)Atypical. Unusual. Unconventional.

Salman Khan-Preity Zinta(Jaan-E-Mann)

Shiney Ahuja-Kangna Ranaut(Woh Lamhe) One of MY personal favorites of the decade.

Hrithik Roshan-Aishwarya Rai(Dhoom 2)Charm of good-looking people(despite the terrible smooch)