Saturday, May 31, 2008


Roses smell sickeningly sweet. The smell of chocolate makes me hungry. Petrol and diesel both give me a high. But then, so does paper. And the insides of cars that have been parked too long in the sun. And ashtrays and expensive leather.
On rainy days, the smell of wet earth and all that jazz is just great. But I wouldn't go to sleep with a clod of mud on my pillow, would you? And perfume...perfume, oh dah'lings perfume!
Yeah sure, I've got a mini artillery of those bottles. Some are gifts, some are occasions, some are memories, some are mistakes and some are routine.
But what I really breathe for, frankly, is that very sexy smell of clean.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Al Pacino effect

The first time I watched Scent of a Woman, I was 12...maybe 13.
The second time, I was 21. The years had made all the difference.
I was ready for the Al Pacino effect. More specifically, the Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade effect.
Of course, one watched Scarface with the appropriate amount of interest and bowed respectfully to Michael Corleone. But nothing, absolutely nothing prepares you for your first encounter with Frank Slade. Hooaaa! Here goes...

(Ok, for those of you who are at mental age 12 and can't appreciate Al Pacino yet, there's hope. You will grow up....someday. The real man may be dead by then. But the tango will never end. )

Monday, May 26, 2008

sunscreen - a love story

He was tall. And she was short.
He could pronounce big words. She fumbled with small ones.
He dreamt about saving the world and changing mankind forever.
She dreamt about pretty clothes and surprise parties.
But they both loved to talk. And they both loved to walk.
So they walked and they talked. Alongside. Sometimes, hand in hand.
Soon, she learnt a bit about rationalism and Nietzche.
And he learnt to tell mauve from pink.
And she confessed that she was a bit of a writer.
And he confessed that he'd never read a book.
Along the beach in hot summer afternoons.
Meandering through traffic and grey avenue trees.
In the absence of a single whiff of breeze.
He walked. And she walked in his shadow.

I'd rather watch a K serial than... God T.V. my hairy neighbour cook breakfast in a towel a Justin Timberlake video with my niece/nephew Leonardo Di Caprio die in the Departed Leonardo Di Caprio die in Blood Diamond Leonardo Di Caprio die in that big movie about a big ship sinking Friends reruns (honestly, ohmigod...there i said it) my wedding video with the superbad special effects people discuss K serials

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

A short biography...

His dad was stoned when they brought him home from the hospital. His mum didn't care.
They looked at his face and laughed loud.
"Look at my son. He looks like a cloud of shit. No. he looks like a pile of poop."
"Birdpoop honey" His mum crooned the words in his shrivelled up new born ears. "Birdpoop."
And the name stuck.
He grew up to be a devastatingly handsome teenager. But he never got a date.
He washed himself several times a day. But he never felt clean.
He got several jobs. And lost them. You don't lie on your resume.
He thought of calling himself Alfred. Or Allen. But the day he was going to fill the forms, his mother died. And her last words were 'Birdpoop'.
The last time we saw him, he was hanging from his neck in a tree, wearing boxers and a crown of pigeon feathers.
He didn't have to leave a suicide note. He only signed his name.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Tell me your password.

I remember that conversation like it was yesterday.

Two of us 13 year olds who thought we were spice girls, sprawled across a bed pretending to be studying. Books flung into far corners, we talked about the cute guys at school, the cute guys on TV, the cute guys in our heads, and occasionally, about girls who were 'total pains'.

Then it was secret time.
You first. Me first. No. Yes. Please. Please...if you're really my friend....sheesh.

I had my hand in a bucket of cheese balls. My feet hurt from trying on her older sister's high heels. I didn't believe going back home was an option till I'd mastered Lesson No.4 The Nervous System. And then, she popped the question.

So, why can't you tell me your password. As if i'm going to check your mail.

Well, if you're not going to, why do you want to know.

You don't trust me?

OK, then you tell me your password.

You first, then I.



I don't remember her fighting with me again. But then, I don't remember her talking to me again either. You know what they say. You can't share your french fries with just anybody. Ditto for passwords.

Spot the writer

Words, like clenched fists, come sooner to some of us.
We call ourselves writers. We are baptised at the altar of the interschool competition, lionized by our parents and teachers alike and looked at with an equal mixture of awe and suspicion by the lesser beings we meet everyday. We write essays about world peace and poems that become routine drawing room conversation. And then one day...some of us grow up.
We realize that out there, it's a world of investment bankers and Indian idols. A cruel world where a man with a fountain pen had better be signing a cheque. We hold in our writing guts and pretend to be rock stars and english teachers, cardiac surgeons and well, 'copy' writers.
But every once in a while, when the world is looking the other way, the masks fall, the curtains part and we stand revealed. Somewhere, somehow, in wordy prescriptions, in passionate love letters, in long long long smses and 250 slide power point presentations, we allow ourselves to be immortal. We are writers again.