Monday, October 05, 2015

How do you hold a moonbeam in your hand?

Time to confess: I was a problem kid.

Then I head this song.. and knew I just wasn't made for this world. :)

Song in head... How do you solve a problem like Maria...

She climbs a tree and scrapes her knee
Her dress has got a tear
She waltzes on her way to Mass
And whistles on the stair
And underneath her wimple
She has curlers in her hair
I even heard her singing in the abbey
She's always late for chapel
But her penitence is real
She's always late for everything
Except for every meal
I hate to have to say it
But I very firmly feel
Maria's not an asset to the abbey
I'd like to say a word in her behalf
Maria... makes... me...laugh
How do you solve a problem like Maria?
How do you catch a cloud and pin it down?
How do you find a word that means Maria?
A flibbertigibbet! A will-o'-the wisp! A clown!
Many a thing you know you'd like to tell her
Many a thing she ought to understand
But how do you make her stay
And listen to all you say
How do you keep a wave upon the sand?
Oh, how do you solve a problem like Maria?
How do you hold a moonbeam in your hand?
When I'm with her I'm confused
Out of focus and bemused
And I never know exactly where I am
Unpredictable as weather
She's as flighty as a feather
She's a darling! She's a demon! She's a lamb!
She'd out pester any pest
Drive a hornet from its nest
She could throw a whirling dervish out of whirl
She is gentle! She is wild!
She's a riddle! She's a child!
She's a headache! She's an angel!
She's a girl!
How do you solve a problem like Maria?
How do you catch a cloud and pin it down?
How do you find a word that means Maria?
A flibbertigibbet! A will-o'-the wisp! A clown!
Many a thing you know you'd like to tell her
Many a thing she ought to understand
But how do you make her stay
And listen to all you say
How do you keep a wave upon the sand
Oh, how do you solve a problem like Maria?
How do you hold a moonbeam in your hand?

Thursday, October 01, 2015

On Longing..

All our longings can be explained away, but not one can be wished away.

Longings are like thirst. Just as thirst can only be quenched by water, not soda, not juice, the longing cannot be fulfilled by anyone else. Just the person/thing/place we are longing for.

Just because there is intense longing today, doesn't mean that the longing, or even the affection, is for forever. It's for today. It's needed in your life today. The place/thing/group/person does not have to be a part of your future. And that's ok.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

If you are my child..

I want you to always remember this:
1. I love you to bits. But I will make a good human being out of you yet.
2. Discipline is only as important as the air you breathe.
3. Work hard.
4. Remember that the most important thing is - how did you make that person feel. That's all they will remember.
5. You only get one chance to make a good first impression.
6. Once every 24 hours, Saraswati is sitting on your tongue, to make an utterance come true.
7. Work hard.
8. There is no substitute for personal discipline. You will thank me later.
9. naam Japo, wand chako, kirat karo.
10. Stay Grounded.
11. Value the person, not his clothes.
12. The world doesn't owe u anything.
13. Be Kind.
14. Always respect ppl who love u.
15. Plant a tree.
16. Smile. Often.
17. Look up at the sky. Now repeat.
18. Do pranayama everyday.
19. Learn to write your thoughts. Then, later in life, when you are confused and don't know how you feel, open your diary/phone/laptop, and start writing. It will all make sense.(PS: This last one is a life hack)
20. Don't be with people who don't make you feel positive. It doesn't matter how important they are.
21. Your self worth comes from you. It doesn't come from your salary, your spouse, or your education. It comes from YOU.
22. You can always do SOMETHING. You just can't think of it right now. But the options exist.
23. Mansa, Vacha, Karmana.. - Your thoughts, your words, your actions.

Monday, September 14, 2015

What men must know about courting women over 35

This came up in a chat with a friend.. when we were discussing what we want men to know abt women above 35..

  1. If you can't ask for the girl, you don't deserve her.
  2. We know the difference between a fling, a FB, a romance, a marriage, and everything in between. So just tell us what you want. Don't beat around the bush. And we will tell u if that works for us.
  3. Unlike what most men think, most women above 35 have no time for drama in their lives.
  4. We are absolutely ok with our weight, looks and clothes. Anything you say to flatter or provoke, will not work. Don't try it.
  5. If its a short term reln, make that clear.
  6. You are never going to be our soulmate. Our girlfriends are our soulmates. Unless you have spent 15 years bringing up children with us (you have not), brought hot towels to manage cramps, and held our hand while our child was sick, you are not going to be our soulmates. Don't try it.
  7. We don't want to hear about your day, your politics/ sports. Unless we love you (and we don't), we really don't care.
  8. Conversation with a woman above 35 is a privilege. You are not likely to be that privileged.
  9. We nod when you talk. Its just who we are. We are empathic. It doesn't mean we are interested in you.
  10. We don't dress to please men. Or Women. EVER. We might dress to please the kids. SOMETIMES.
  11. Don't be cheap, even if we say its all OK.
  12. The fastest way to lose a woman over 35, is to take her for granted. Her husband already did that.
  13. Don't waste your time giving signals. There are no signals. Read Point 1.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Natural Born Children - the Orphans of our Policy Making

When you go to adopt a child, you have to convince the govt that you are financially, emotionally and physically fit to take care of a child.

You know why the IVF industry is flourishing? One reason could be that when you have a natural born child, you do not have to prove this fitness to anyone. IF they tried, a lot of parents wouldn't be able to prove this fitness.

And that's the thing. If the govt ensures a safe and secure environment for an adopted child, why are natural children the govt's orphans? Why doesn't the govt guarantee the same security to the natural descendants of their parents?

Tuesday, September 08, 2015


Ghazal is not something I dabble in often.. but here's one that might make some sense..

for what its worth..

बड़े दिनों तक परियों पे ऐतबार रहा 
बहुत मसीहा का भी इंतज़ार रहा 

यास तो बाद में बनी राज़दाँ मेरी 
पहले उम्मीद का इंतज़ार रहा 

तुमने मुझसे क्यूँ वफ़ा ना की 
इतना भर उसने बार बार कहा

मुआफ़ करना, और भूल जाना, एक सी बात नहीं  
सीने का खंजर भुलाने में ही करार रहा 

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Anger and Love

When my son was very young - perhaps around 2 years or so, he used to throw temper tantrums often. So one day I told him, "I know why you get angry. Jab hamari pyaar ki battery down ho jaati hai to vo khali jagah gusse se bharti hai. Come, let me recharge ur pyaar ki battery."

And I used to hug him tight after that. At first, he was zapped. Then, he started hugging back even when he was angry.

Today, we recharge each other's "pyaar ki battery" often. When I am mad at him, he remembers to ask me, "Aapki pyaar ki battery low ho gayi hai na?"

And then I realised, its true for adults too. When the heart is full of love, anger finds no place. When love diminishes, then anger appears - in small doses at first. If we do not recharge the batteries of love, the empty space is taken over by anger.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Ek Purana Mausam Lauta, Yaad Bhari Purvai bhi...

Today, my son and i went to get some stuff for the house. Tucked under the stairs, one spotted.. a BOOKSTORE! The display made it clear that this was a curated place, so i walked in . Now, if you know my son, you also know that he cannot be held still anywhere, and the probability of holding him still in a bookstore is about .00007%.

We walked in, and right at the entrance were children's books.. NOT Geronimo Stiltons. NOT Enid Blytons.. REAL Children's books. Ishaan picked up a Kids' Joke book while I spoke with the owner. In the meantime, the child doubled up with laughter and came to share a joke every 2 minutes. They WERE funny jokes.

We looked around, for books, at books, flipped through the pages, saw the pictures...the child in his own section, and me in mine.. The collection was just right.. picked by a bibliophile. The space was well managed.. with 2 stools that one could use to browse and read.

At one place, one saw.. Logic Puzzles! Now, one's being a puzzle junkie is no secret... and this here.. was a treasure trove.. an entire SECTION dedicated to puzzle books and NOT dominated by Word Search, Sudoku and Crossword alone.

By this time, I hadn't heard the child's voice for over 5 minutes, and that, in motherspeak, is Code Red. So i started running to find him. The person at the counter gestured that i should pause, and everything is fine. I turned the corner to find my son's head buried in another book.

And then one got thinking.. When we walk into a bookstore, a conversation begins. The books tell us things about them - starting with the cover, the no. of pages, the size of the print, the quality of paper, the excerpts we manage to catch...we ask questions and hope that they have the answers among the pages we are flipping.. They open our eyes to vistas not yet observed.  Its a friendship that begins even before its formalised. Reminds me of Heidi and Clara.

A lot of us still pause outside a bookstore and can't help picking up at least one book.  We know how it feels to enter a bookstore and come out with only one book, even if we went in to buy "Vikram's Model Papers for Class X" , we were still eyeing the latest Archie near the store counter.

The reviewed books, they are out there, getting bought. That's the commerce of business. The good books, in the hands of  well curated bookshops, THAT is the romance of books.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Poetry/ शायरी

जैसे मलीहाबाद  के आमों का रस..... 
तुप्का तुपका
ज़बां पर टपके

बूँद बूँद
मीठी हुई जाए है