मैं दीपक हूँ

Almost a month back, something which I have been working upon-for almost half a decade- crashed and burned right in front of me. Not that this is something that doesn’t happen to anyone else, but I can’t rob that event of its significance- at least, not just because it happens to everybody. I can’t.

I will not.

But there is a lot that I learnt along the way- or at least, I would like to think so. I also know that you can not foresee how and where all those learnings might come handy in future, but because they are a part of me- I know they will.

I am aware that my story is not limited to a project here, and a project there. Rather, it is going to be about the theme that I have invested myself into. That theme, which has driven me this far, is intact. If I had a choice of turning back time and changing some choices I made 7 years back, I can say this from the bottom of my heart: I won’t do it any differently.

But a man is not made for defeat. A man can be destroyed but not defeated.

Destroyed I am.

Reading helps, in times like these. Because you have precedents in situations like these. People have survived, and lived to tell the tale. Knowing this helps.

But comfort and peace of mind are overrated anyway. It was adventure what I sought right from day one, and adventure is what I got. Can’t even complain 😉

Even in this moment of despair and gloom, I still want to work on that theme that I talked about. What would I do with what I already have, if not for something that is beyond me and my petty life….

मैं दीपक हूँ, मेरा जलना ही तो मेरा मुस्काना है|

आभारी हूँ तुमने आकर
मेरा ताप-भरा तन देखा,
आभारी हूँ तुमने आकर
मेरा आह-घिरा मन देखा,
करुणामय वह शब्द तुम्हारा–
’मुसकाओ’ था कितना प्यारा।
मैं दीपक हूँ, मेरा जलना ही तो मेरा मुस्काना है|

है मुझको मालूम पुतलियों
में दीपों की लौ लहराती,
है मुझको मालूम कि अधरों
के ऊपर जगती है बाती,
उजियाला करदेनेवाली
मुसकानों से भी परिचित हूँ,
पर मैंने तम की बाहों में अपना साथी पहचाना है।
मैं दीपक हूँ, मेरा जलना ही तो मेरा मुस्काना है|



…to the new beginnings.

Not that I haven’t done this before ( the whole making-previous-posts-private  thing ), but it seems like a great idea: to live one year at a time.

blog resolution

As someone who has been able to stick with resolutions whole year round, I refuse to give in to the widespread skepticism ( around resolutions in general, and the new year ones in particular ). Hence, the post.

Writing down helps. Keeps you accountable and helps with the course correction if need be.

PS- Zombie-Relationships… I am a fan of zombie movies actually ( World War Z, Train to Busan and so on and so forth )- not so much of the people though. I can’t just be a ‘once in a while‘ or ‘in touch‘ person.

PPS- didn’t know how to define ‘whatever’ Open-mouthed smile

Christmas Post

Christmas hasn’t added much to my life, except there was someone who was around about a decade back and happened to get me Christmas Cakes. To me, it didn’t mean much then. But, over the years there have been quite a few who have come to actuate the christmas spirit. For me. This is incredible, because with time things rather get narrower and specific- for most of us. We had so many friends back in school and college, and look at us now Winking smile Basically, with time, we become more specific rather than adding…cherries to our cake, so to speak.

For me, it has gone differently because maybe, I was not looking to settle. Or, get stable. Even the other day, I joined some distant friends in a protest against government policies and got detained for few hours. A week prior to that, I took my date to another protest Winking smile The point is, by some stroke of chance, I have been able to find high points in life more often than the others. I know of someone who has more stamps on her passport than the number of years I have blessed mother Earth, has a beautiful Instagram feed, yet cries on her birthdays because she is lonely. The point is, people try so much to appear happy, that they forget what actually makes them happy.

I, my mother says, am too lazy to try much to please others.

So yes, as the years go by, there isn’t an iota of regret for the lack of usual high points- the ones that you update your facebook for Open-mouthed smile That, I believe, is what Christmas spirit is about.

How to be a better person?

Quite frankly, I have no idea. But, like everyone else, I am doing my fair bit. Or at least, I think so.

Of late, I am beginning to see the many lacunae that I have- yes, there was a phase when I thought I was flawless. My conduct, my thoughts and ideas and so on and so forth. Everything. What was I thinking Smile with tongue out But, thanks to the great company that I have of late, I have come to realise how things actually are- rather than how I think they are. Funnily enough, there are major divergences.

One of the things which I have been working on, is the urge to impose my values on others. For instance, I am not so much of a believer in fat-Indian-weddings. My reservations aside, I do believe that marriages are sacred, and essential. And it is quite alright to be excited about it. But from what I have seen in the last decade or so, the whole excitement has been reduced to some sort of competition among brides and grooms ( feminisation of men, but more on that later ). Competitive idiocy, if I might daresay, to spend as much as they can.

Digging a little deeper, it turns out that everyone wants their wedding ( meaning thereby- outfits, shamiana, DJ, stage etc. ) to be unique. Something that nobody else has had, or seen.

How innocent Open-mouthed smile If only I could tell my friend that the gown she bought for 50,000 INR has been bought from the same shop by 50 other brides that very day. So, as far as being unique goes, more spending does not help very much. There is this other lack of self worth, issue which plays a bigger role though.

In a nutshell, marriage has been reduced to a one day ( rather a 5 hour ) circus with people trying to outspend each other. Tragic.

But of course, you are unique. And you marriage should be a manifestation of the person you are- the one that has endures years of schooling, college- and life, to say the least. It would be a terrible idea anyway to be just another groom/bride in the assembly line.

But then, what do I know! I am not getting married Winking smile

Theatre: Philadelphia

It is a little old-ish (read classic) , but if you are born in the 80s- or earlier- you must have seen this. I mean who doesn’t love the casting song ( Streets of Philadelhia by Bruce ). Pure bliss right? I am yet to see a better start for a movie this intense.

Putting Denzel Washington and Tom Hanks, is like adding chocolate and strawberry, to the same ice-cream. Of course, I have a bias for movies rooted in serious issues. But that apart, you will still love the way chemistry evolves between the lead actors. How Denzel overcomes his own bias, and how Tom Hanks adapts to his new situation…couldn’t have thought of anyone else playing these roles.

In the end, you would dearly want Hanks to live, but then… it is not bollywood Winking smile Now, explain to me as you would explain to a child,  do you still think movies are just for entertainment? Open-mouthed smile





Theatre: The Delivery Man (2013)

I am, and I have been for as far as I can remember, a movie buff. In fact, my mother used to take me to theatre as a toddler ( she tells me the stories of movies she saw holding me in her lap ) – couldn’t have missed out on the fun just because she had a baby afterall Winking smile So, yes… I have been thoroughly trained, and bred, to love movies. A lot of us see movies as commodities to be consumed for entertainment. We watch the movie, and move on to do other things in life, which are all seemingly much more important, and serious.

Not me.

I watch a movie, and a week later, you will find me hungover ( of course, the movie has to be a little tolerable. I still dread The Requiem for a dream ). To me, it is art waiting to be experienced and assimilated. Probably the next best thing to books ( which are not constrained by the vision of director and scriptwriter ). But in spite of all its limitations, movies are what keeps me ticking in the best, and the worst, of times. Almost everywhere I have been to, every city, I have made sure to watch a movie there. At least. It is almost like visiting a church or temple, if you please.

On second thoughts, it is exactly like visiting a church or temple.

Moving on, I have come to think that because of the things I have gotten myself into ( and this is going to stay ), it gets difficult to talk about my personal and professional life. So, why not pen down what I feel about the movies I come to see- what I liked or didn’t like. Seems like a good idea, at least at the moment.

So here we go.

I watched this movie quite some time back, and considered as one of the few movies in Hollywood inspired from a Bollywood flick- it is not bad. In fact, it adds so many layers to the original Hindi movie.

An affable underachiever finds out he’s fathered 533 children through anonymous donations to a fertility clinic 20 years ago. Now he must decide whether or not to come forward when 142 of them file a lawsuit to reveal his identity.

I quite like the lead actor ( have seen him in a lot of comedy movies ). He is energetic, loud and speaks dialogues in one single push. I like that because, maybe, I speak like that as well Winking smile But that apart, the way he evolves in the movie from a reckless and beaten down person to someone who owns upto the reality that has come to be… it is incredible. He might not show a lot of emotions, but he does make the point very well.

I do not intend to write a professional movie review here: for that, I need to be paid Smile with tongue out ( have done that back in college days ). But if you can, do check the movie out.

PS: there was this song as part of OST, which I absolutely love


is the adjective we use for something we don’t mind going back to over and over. Like Atlas Shrugged, Gulaab Jamun, The lord of the rings movie series or even that street where you spent so much time as a kid. Classic, and others know how fond of it you already are.

Of course, for some classic might be Shakespeare, while mine would be Dostoyevsky or Lenin. A lot depends on the kind of person you grew up to be ( or, are still coming to be Winking smile ) and the kind of stuff you surrounded yourself with. Or, it surrounded you- for no fault of yours Open-mouthed smile. Either way, it ends up shaping you in a particular way, which is how the nature-vs-nurture debate starts off. But that apart, are there some universal  classics, which most, if not all, would agree to?

I wonder.

Anyway… so, here I am.

PS- sometimes, it is better to leave some questions unanswered… like why should I get married or Who is John Gault Smile with tongue out