Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Good reasons to revive a dead blog

Today, Dec 7 2016, marks an important day in my life. For it was on this day that I opened my FB page (in itself a momentous occasion) and spotted a birthday post from an old nemesis to The One Who Graced The World Twenty-Mumble-Mumble Years Ago This Day. The One does not look her best in the photo. No, she does not. In fact, were my other, scarier, old nemesis to see this photo, many harsher things might have been conveyed. Fuck, there are so many internal references here, don't even bother reading, rest of world. Anyway, back to my point. Old Nemesis(the First) posted this photo and wrote some cloying things in the caption. I was struck dumb. Three sentences? He can put together three sentences? Express love on a public forum? Hell, even be seen in the same frame with Much? Wow, genuine miracle has occurred today. And this, truly, highlights what a memorable day it is. Even the automatons who walk among us can show feelings. 

Happy Birthday Much. Keep that hair and one day Garnier will come begging at your door step. Big year for you. I sincerely cannot believe this is happening. I am fighting some complex battles to be there on the day of. Thanks for the repeated reminders of when that day is. Jan mumble mumble. 

Love and all that,

Saturday, December 5, 2015

By parts

It's been so long, I don't even remember if I can write anymore. Writing is definitely on top of my list of things that go rusty after prolonged disuse. Other hits being integral calculus, binge drinking and wearing heels. Each of these in their own crappy way just go a bit off when you haven't paid them due attention in a while. Who knew you could crave integration by parts someday. The easy way it rolled off your pen and decorated page upon page with u,v,x,y and curly braces. That tired sore muscle feel after you had finished 4 pages of this and arrived at left equals right in a mathematically perfect world. Why did they never tell you that you really would not use this 5 years later. That you would, in fact, forget most of it and little by little that intricate web would be swept away.
I feel the same about Hindi sometimes. I am terrified of forgetting it. Writing and reading it. Looking at Kabir's couplets and seeing 10 words stringed into something familiar and utterly incomprehensible.
Somedays, I can't wait to be 65 and done with this life shit and have all the time in the world to lavish on the things that deserve it.
Writing for instance.


What's this year been like then? Don't ask, don't tell. 26 is not an easy time to be. Life is already becoming a little stale around the edges. I am angrier and none the wiser. or nicer. I think a lot in graphs and mass balances now. I am one Groupon Getaway from doing something very stupid. Happy people irritate me.


Thursday, December 11, 2014

Excuse me while I kiss this guy

Mondegreen. That is what this is. When Jimi Hendrix wanted to "kiss the sky" in Purple Haze, I kept wondering which guy.
Mondegreens are when the brain interprets something completely differently from what it actually is. Like me and my insecure lot apparently do when we hear perfectly normal things and misrepresent them in our chaotic brains. Ah, woe is me. Why must these trust issues be saddled to my back.


You may not escape the birthday post. Crossing barriers of geography and the 10,000 years since I last saw you, I'm sending love, unicorns, wishes, all that good stuff.
Happy Birthday :)


I met Shwetu recently. Yes, after two years of sheer cowardice, I saw her in person for further demonstrations of said cowardice. We did the usual giggling and talking, stuck and home and walking around. Gone are the days when our mother's wondered if we were fighting, since we were being so quiet *cough*lame*cough*. It is a low point in one's life when your own mother finds you vaguely uncool. Meeting her was a blessed relief.

I did not meet her friends. They now have a completely wrong picture of the both of us being melodramatic and highly strung. This just goes to show that one day, pigs will fly.

What! I hear both of you gasping. Two posts in one day? Is everything okay, Aggie?
Yep, going swimmingly :)

Muchi, thy day has come and gone

Just when you thought I'd done the unspeakable by forgetting the birthday post, here it is. In all it's PDA glory, causing the two readers of this blog to wince and look away. I WILL NOT give up the birthday post. Not even when we are 80 and Alzheimer's has made me forget who Muchi really is. Even then, my clawed fingers will type some gibberish and you will bloody read it.

This year, traditions were broken. By that great disappointer, namely, me. To make up for not calling her two hours before The Day of Days, I am sending another one of my inexpensive and unique gifts of love. As they say, the best things in life are free, etc.

This year, Suchi's birthday was meticulously planned on a whatsapp group which made me feel hopelessly sad that I couldn't be there in person. How many birthday's have we spent apart now? Why? Stupid geography. Every year, plans are floated for New Orleans, Wizarding World of Harry Potter etc and then these plans go die at the same place where my other sock often disappears. In a void.

Happy birthday muchi :) You and your hair probably blinded a few virginal boys. Or maybe they were blinded anyway by that other thing that virginal boys do copiously. Hahaha, I will now laugh at my own jokes on this lonely blog :)

Friday, November 7, 2014

The Elegant Universe

Dr. Brian Greene was at Purdue yesterday. He is an unusual lecturer of physics. I understood all of his talk, despite it being mainly about string theory and what came before that. If someone can talk with that ease for an hour, without slides propping him/her up, and sound a bit like Hank from Californication, I'll dedicate a blog post to them. He talked about the fabric of the universe as some great minds understand it. His lecture made me miss my battered high school copy of Resnick and Halliday. And how small! how utterly completely wondrous! is our existence, in the here and now (both of which are concepts that make the mind spin, yet again). Also felt a wee bit of this.


Somewhere in the first quarter of his talk, Dr.Greene explained the mechanism of gravity by asking us to imagine a flat rubber mat. A marble sliding on it would roll smoothly. Now if we were to place a big rock on the mat, the marble would no longer travel in a linear fashion, but would curve around the rock. And now imagine space is that rubber mat. A body like the sun would bend it and the Earth would then be forced to orbit this body that has bent everything around it. He had an animation to go with this. To the plebeian mind, it looked like those Maut ka Kua stunt rides, only on a planetary scale. Ah, cheap melas of Bombay, I miss you and your defiance of physics.


Relationships are also somewhat like that,no? One heavy ball of expectations denting that fabric, so that both of us are forced to orbit endlessly around it. Pulled by the inexorable forces of love, what's next, too many work commitments, disliking each other's TV shows and would it kill to include a fucking smiley, eh? All that gravity, whattodo? How to be less of selfish pig?

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Lola and Buzz

We named our cars and it all went downhill from there.

We graduated from names, to the pronouns her/him, to apologizing when we went rashly over speed bumps and to mutely sympathizing with them when they had to stay outside under polar vortexes and -40 C weather.


You can never tell (and me, I can NEVER) what people might come to mean to you, three tiny inconsequential months into meeting them. Time mocks our relationships, just as relationships often defy the elastic boundaries of time. List, list, list:

12 hours: How much ahead of me, the most important part of me goes on living in my absence
1 hour : The shortest time in which I have fallen madly in love with someone
2 years: How long it took to get over an idiot I dated for 6 months
6 months: Getting over another chump 2 years after a painfully involved relationship
5 hours: Chatting on the phone with Natu. Just like that, one day after school
1 minute: Time required to get Sherin giggling madly, a month after not talking to her
5 minutes: Groveling to all and sundry for not calling. Im sorry, I suck.


The friends I have made here surprise me because I thought I had long exhausted as invisible quota of how many awesome people seem to want to drink chai with you. But no, apparently, I have space for many more :) 

Monday, June 9, 2014

Hobo thought

Hobo thought: A thought that was slumming around in your head.

Innocuous. You didn't notice it at first, till suddenly one day it asked for a coffee or donuts or something, spare change.

The one is about a house. I had a stray thought about things my future house should have. A wine cellar, a water feature, plenty of guest bedrooms, terraces, balconies, patios, flowers, a mermaid themed bathroom. A reading nook, needless to say.
See, it's been growing and building on seemingly nothing. I'm puzzled and happy at these symptoms of growing up :) :)

Thursday, June 5, 2014


Mental khit-pit is happening. Like city traffic as a background hum when you are sleeping, some thoughts are ever present. A slow back burner that is always on your mind, even if you dont know it. Shaping the way you think and react.
What I think about this alienating process of getting a PhD, what I want after this, a quiet death of hopes, that I have been furiously hoping all alone apparently.
Life happens at unexpected times and in unexpected ways.

Big, scary questions, guaranteed to produce 2 am hyper wakefulness.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day a.k.a "What did you eat today?"

For the past four years, I have lived a couple of continents away from my parents. I live (relatively) by myself, own a car and am halfway through a doctorate that is killing me in stages. Despite all of this, the only note of real concern that has ever crept into my mother's voice is the weekly posing of these questions " Have you eaten yet? What are you eating? What did you eat this week?", ad infinitum in this vein.
Food is my mother's primary way of expressing love and affection. Other mother's may hug and cuddle, mine produces unsurpassable pav bhaji, dosas and strawberry milkshake. All on the same day. Given the miles that are now a barrier to personally stuffing my face, her modus operandi has become Surprise Food Parcels. These are giant boxes of food (Alphonso mangoes one summer, faraal one Diwali) that will arrive at my doorstep and have, on one occasion, made me cry.


I have inherited some of my mother's legendary food pushing abilities in another form. Her's are more of a hawkish watching of who's eating what, expecting their stomachs to quadruple in size and then inflicting upon them, beta, one more roti, you only ate 7 so far, please.
I push people to read.
The most successful of my cajoling/bullying experiments has been Jenni, who never EVER read a book. It took years of work, and there she was, casually talking about Murkami the other day. I think I understand why people enter academia after at all.
I spend mental space thinking of books that I can match up with people. Can't help buying/mailing/lending people books that they just HAVE to read. Heaven would be a huge library, with pouffy old lady chairs, the sky for a ceiling, tables with coffee rings and lots of people to discuss PG Wodehouse with.


Summer is here :D It is that gleefully sweaty, watermelon-infused, pink cheetah print chaddi shorts time again. Fitz and the Tantrums are my band for the summer.


what a silly game we play,
Like a summer's day in May,
What is love? What is love?
I just want it to be love

Matt White

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Cray old bar

Before you bother reading any of my hokey half though thoughts, please watch this: 

Thank you very much Dee Dee bear <3 div="" nbsp="">


Bug Muchi with existentialist hoo-ha just before her bed time and that's what she calls you, cray old bar. She's going for crazy old bat (guilty as charged, always) when she types this. Followed by entreaties to leave her alone. Very few people are gifted with a friends like these. Who know the thought before I have thunk it, who'll find a word for everything and who can tolerate you even when you sound doped without having gone near the stuff. I really lucked out here.


Life is busy, the right kind of busy :) I enjoy working now. As if some bend was crossed without me realizing it. Somehow, all the cluelessness, the stress and struggle have morphed into a glimmer of understanding. I know so little about science but I feel as if I know what to do now. And where I'd like to go with this funny, maddening choice that life dropped on me.


I want to see:
1. Inu
2. A documentary on why My Little Pony has any adult fans at all.
3. My pottery project, once we finish it
4. P, smiling 
5. Snow melting under the sun
6. The end of The Luminaries
7. Black storks, migrating 
8. My elusive family on Skype
9. Histone octamers, refolded successfully by moi
10. The blue ceiling of St Mary's

Friday, January 31, 2014

Charlotte's Web

Wilbur never forgot Charlotte. Although he loved her children and grandchildren dearly, none of the new spiders ever quite took her place in his heart. She was in a class by herself. It is not often that someone comes along who is a true friend and a good writer. Charlotte was both.

-EB White in Charlotte's web.

I'll use this much abused emo blog to thank the following people who can string together the meaning of life (more specifically, my life) for me:

At some point of time, something one of them has written has made me smile/smirk/finally get it


Kagaz ke do pankh leke
Udaa chala jaye re
Jaha nahi jana tha, ye
Wahi Chala hai re
Umar ka ye tana-bana
Samajh na paye re
Disha hara, kemon boka
Monta re

-Swanand Kirkire in Lootera

I'll tell you why I like this movie. It's for all the wrong reasons: we drove an hour through placid corn fields, could not make the theatre attendant understand which movie we wanted to see, there was no samosa at the interval. Went through all this work for 2 hours of hearing Hindi on a big screen. The movie was beautiful, frame by frame. I dint like that Ranvir guy. But Sonakshi got to me, with her clumsy, artless lust for a strange man. Her sheltered world that becomes brightly exciting. Her gorgeous sari's. 

I loved this movie because I miss bollywood. There, I said it. I miss how it surprises you sometimes. How it's Delhi 6's and Swades' and Delhi Belly's exist and charm you. I crave those 3 hour long extravagances and Gulzar's lyrics. I want that overpriced samosa in the interval. 

What should I do? I wasn't so sappy before. Acidic would be the best summary of my attitude to the Indian film industry. 4 years away from India, and I'll be clutching the weirdest figments of nationality. I recently found myself defending Bollywood. I have a mini pantheon of gods in my car. I read the Indian Express on occasion. 

People move. I moved when I was 21,when I did not think about the weight of decisions. Heck, could barely spell that word. 

Aur bhi kuch tha, but now I forget what it was :)

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Cutting chai

Let's shoot the breeze, then


First off, Sharan, my love, Happy Birthday!! May the year ahead be full of books, sexy men who read them and some beams of enlightenment in context of grad school. Sharan's exact birthdate in December: unknown; her current geographical location: unknown, time and place that I might possibly meet her next: haha, unknown; love and wishes for her: tons!


What is happiness? Happiness is to be in your hometown, holding your sweetheart's hand, and eating your favorite food.

-The Bathing women
Tie Ning 


I'm back for my annual Bombay darshan. Not one atom has budged out of place in the incredibly long year that I have been away. Anyone in grad school will know that feeling. The days are long and the months are short. While you ponder over the chasm of what you were supposed to accomplish and what actually happened, it's time for 20 hours in squashy airplanes and then home.

This time, we landed in Pune, not Bombay. Same balmy, pollution infused scent on getting out of the aircraft though. Driving down the expressway at 5 am in the morning, these are the things I had missed: steep hilly roads and massive trailers bearing down on you, coconut trees and mountains in the distance. A palpable sigh of relief at leaving those ghastly flat corn fields and snow behind.

Terrain wise, everything is up and down as always. My mom and aunt can' t help laughing over my effusive and poetic odes to the food they cook. I lavish more words and love on a perfect chappati than I have on them. No longer having a room or a bed in my own house, I have taken to squatting in Jenni's room. EVERYONE I have met has commented on my weight. Giggles about how I should think about marriage soon. I parry, duck, dive and smirk my way out of things and I'm invited over for food everywhere. I have sorely missed all this natak for a while now. 

Had a bad flight experience coming here. Completely redeemed by the best travel companion ever :* :* :* Yahan pe bhi PDA, P :)

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Happy Birthday Muchi!

Yeah, we still do birthday posts. There is no shame in this.
Happy Birthday Beloved. You have gained some years and lost some morals. Nothing new this year then :)
Muchi wanted me to grace the occasion of her (unnamed) birthday this year. Being her best friend in the whole world but also a bit of an ass, I wasn't able to make it. But as I do every year, Im sending her the most beautiful (and also completely free) gift of love.
Dude, we are that wala age now. I dont know if we achieved everything we wanted to. By some miracle, we still have each other and that makes me feel pretty darn awesome.
Ill see you on the other side of the hill,
Love and all that,
Not in you know what sense,
P:S: Her hair is still out there for those who haven't seen her in person lately :)

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

These are not the droids you are looking for

Dear America,

I am done with your consumeristic heart and your Black Friday's. I will leave you again for a month long stint in India, where the vegetables are tiny, but real. I hate writing with an audience in my head. 
I really do. Hence, I write for a blog that no one reads. Writing is a good escape from long days and weary thoughts.
I want to go home.
But. I don't want to take my messy little head with me. With it's unruly hair that the humidity will fuck up and it's jumble of thoughts that ruminate on and on.
I am very. Restless. Yes, that is what I am. Something, or someone, must happen soon.
I realized that our little Apeejay School trio is all aboard on the PhD bandwagon. Well. ladies, who would have thunk? Except Suchi, but she is sort of doing one, in her own special way. Cue, ironic laugh, perfected over many conversations. 
I write with emoticons. I am that person.

Jiro, as in Jiro dreams of Sushi tells us that we can never go back. I agree with all my heart. There is no going back. Not to Bombay, not to Gainesville, not to perfect relationships. Bye bye love, Hello uncertainty. There are only friends who walk with you from one place to the next. A mobile home of sorts, since you no longer have a real geographic destination to call home anymore. 

Babe, I'm gonna leave you.

-Led Zeppelin

Read this. If you are in your twenties, your career is presently an inside joke and you get mad at the world sometimes, just read it. 

The F.R.I.E.N.D.S theme song. I am living it every day.

Will anybody be around in Bombay this December? I will buy you beer, I promise.