All posts in the Life category


Published February 10, 2018 by Virgo293

Adversity has a wonderful of getting you in touch with your true self. As popular conception, or misconception, goes, I don’t think it defines you. It helps you explore a side to yourself that you never knew existed, or reaffirms you of a side that always did. It is unexpected times only that look you in the eye and challenge all beliefs that you comfortably wrap yourself in. And yet in these times, what you lose first, is your vision.

For me fortitude, is to embrace this blur and juggle with it, while believing in wisdom being as much a tool as just physical courage. When a tiger confronts you, it is nature that has decided your immediate response to be flight. Does this mean that fleeing is not courageous? Does this mean that fight is the only grand thing to do? The only thing that deserves the mark of character? I have an issue with replacement of the word ‘face’ with ‘fight.’ Just facing an issue isn’t a big deal anymore.

The recent Padmavat controversy has a root in what I am trying to say. The reaction and uprising that the film’s climax has received rekindles my faith in the power of judgement in today’s society. I won’t waste my time discussing ‘Johar’ and the evil associated with this practice, because it has already died a natural death. Had there been even a little bit of honesty or righteousness in the practice, it would have found its way to today’s world. However, I do want to talk about the thousands of people, not just women, who continue to inflict pain upon themselves, day in and day out. And it is the ‘glorification’ of this infliction that I have a problem with.

It starts with small things. Like putting up with that abusive boss, because that is how the culture today is. Almost everything falls into the ‘Chalta haicategory. It spans out to bigger things, of dealing with mental and physical torture, and at times succumbing to it. Even media trolling, despite how trivial it sounds, has an impact on the normal life of an individual. How many mouths then, does one fight? How many tussles does one aim at conquering? And how then, does one get away from this pain, when the cool thing to do, is to take a stand?

And when you do so,  you know what you are called, right?  What the hushed tones define you to be. Yes! A coward. A spineless, opinion-less being who has no right to be called human. It is this stereotypical definition of courage that I have a problem with. This glorification of ‘bravery.’ So much so, that it has gone to mean revenge.

Let me go on to clarify something here. I don’t mean to degrade those who find a voice to justify themselves. That is also a form of strength. But what I mean to do instead, is take off the color of embarrassment that shades the life of a person who knows how to let go.

Who wouldn’t call the case of Avantica Maken that of immense bravery? Doesn’t it take guts to pardon someone who took away the man who means more to you than your own life? If this is not strength, then what is?

It takes immense courage to detach oneself from a situation and let go. It takes even more courage to let go. And for me, this perseverance, that meets suffering, without even a hint of malice, in thought or action, is fortitude!

No man, woman, preacher or practice that propagates this, is in any way, glorifying cowardice. That one chooses detachment from the infliction, or escape from the pain altogether, is completely a personal choice. None of it defines one’s character, or its strength. And the courage to do what naturally comes to one, in this world of judgement, is perhaps the true purpose of life.

Life in extreme conditions


Love You Zindagi

Published December 9, 2016 by Virgo293

At times little is more. Small is large. And trivial much more important than what a translucent interface makes it appear. Wobbly thoughts that threaten to fizz out at the most inappropriate times are what make us human. The constant tug of war between what to do and what not to, what to say and what to hold back, and most significantly who to be and how; is what defines life.

At these times, what has always helped me come to terms with myself, is putting pen to paper and edging out a patient call out to life. Dear Zindagi, translates one such messy and fluid letter to life, and creates a visual treat for anyone who has ever looked at confusion in the eye, and yet hasn’t known how to deal with it. For how long after all, can one shut oneself?

With an introduction as personal as this, it is visibly clear that this is no film-review. Nor an expert opinion, since there is seemingly little that anyone can know about the gigantic art or craft of film-making. And apart from this, a judgement is the last thing I want to draw from this film that inspires exactly the opposite.

What I want to do though, in my small insignificant way, is to put down this piece as a thank-you note to the film that made me laugh, cry and realize that no matter how silly certain dilemmas seem on surface, if you don’t feel okay, it is okay to look up for a hand. That the lull I feel even when the world around me is cheering in joy, is as existent as it sounds to my ears. But most importantly, it makes me realize that despite all of this, I have it in me to smile, love and spring to back to life, with faith and hope stronger than before.

I admit, with sincerity, that this might not be Shinde’s best; and I hope that she out-does herself in the time to come. I also know that there is a huge lot of people who have called the film a slog, called it silted and synthetic, a preaching sermon, or even a live session with a counselor. I do not blame them, and by no means am I trying to prove that the film is an immaculate piece of perfection to see and follow.

But what I am trying to draw spot-light on, is the attempt. How many times does it happen in our country, that one chooses an unconventional, insignificant almost, wearily taboo subject, and treats it as a premise for a commercial film? How often does a superstar stretch out of his comfort zone, to give way to a woman half his age for her to be able to display not just her talent and skills, but her weaknesses, unhappiness and specifically her insecurities? And how frequently in these attempts, does a film like this make it to the theaters, with a respectable three-week run and hopefully more to follow?

I respect the talent and expertise of all those who are critiquing the film, and not just criticizing it. I believe they know and understand what it takes to make a good film with conflicts and situations as internal and intimate; not to mention doing so in a funny, light-hearted and bravely straight-forward way. But there certainly is more to the point. I do not want applause for the film just on account of  advocating the beguile stereotype attached with psychology and its practice. Or for the charm and flair sported by the leading man and lady, in that order. Or even for the shots that beautifully camouflage the discomfort associated with the subject and her story!

What I feel the film deserves appreciation for is the attempt to cut out a slice of life that hasn’t been tasted before. For the pool of its flavors. That the taste, liking and savoring of this slice is diverse, can easily be an occupational hazard. The slice pulled out might be, and even is, disliked, loathed or even hated by some. But what is important is that someone is scooping this slice for us to stop and look at life, even if it is through misty glasses.


This is first in an upcoming series of Film-related articles, that will celebrate, rejoice and elaborate the beauty that life ‘imprints’ upon me, in the form of movies! 🙂

Out of Context

Published September 9, 2015 by Virgo293
We live a life full of miseries today. We wake up with cars honking in our ears, in pea sized bedrooms that neither have enough bed nor enough room, to see faces of people filled with lines.
The day that follows has sunshine just as light and heat keeps fowling upon us when the sky is full of clouds. The grey of concrete that surrounds us, is worse than black at times. You smile briefly until the news of a mishap, a manhandling and at times even a war reaches you. And then there are people that nag you down your throat.
We live in perpetual frustration. Happiness, prosperity and laughter, in a world like this, become non-contextual.
There’s is little you can do about any of this. In the brink that these instances happen, they fill your life with misery, and affect you all over.
They say it is about the eye. About how you look at things. But then the glass is no longer half full. And the last few drops left in it force you to see the emptiness it is filled with. What do you do then, imagine a full glass?
I read something on a newspaper today, and it is truer now, than ever before. It said ‘The world is comic, but the joke is on mankind.’
Let’s face it, in the world today, if there is little to look forward to if you are a realist.
But the deal is that, I, am not a realist. And perhaps that is precisely why, I am out of context.
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Say it Again!

Published March 17, 2015 by Virgo293


Words, spoken once, can’t be repeated. They can be formed and delivered with the same tone and accent; but repetition, no. That moment in time, when they were said, the way they were, can never be recreated. Once it’s gone, it’s gone.

The morning dew, along with the azan, marks the beginning of each day for me. It doesn’t start the same old one though. It starts something new.

When that delicious food bite, fills in your taste buds for the umpteenth time in your favourite restaurant, the flavour hasn’t been replicated. It has taken effort, and expertise, and a lot of them both, to get to you the same experience. And yet, each experience is new.

I met this painter once. He said he couldn’t use the same muse twice. It just didn’t inspire him anymore. And then he showed me around fifty paintings of the same beloved. She was in a different position, in a different state and a different state of mind in each of them. And therefore, each painting was different. And new.

Boredom and monotony then, I think, can’t be the fault of just words. It is possibly the lack of feelings behind those words.

Perhaps that is why everyday in the rainy season doesn’t infuse poetry into your ink.

And perhaps that is why, my dad doesn’t get bored of I love Youing my mom. Because he  never repeats it. He just says it again!

On the Beach

Published February 22, 2015 by Virgo293

There is this thing about travelling. It either makes you more aware of your self, or puts all that you are aware of into question. Writing about such travelling puts the trips you take into perspective. At least for me it does. I wonder if this is what they call travel-writing.

When I thought of writing, and about getting the motivation to write, I always thought of the sea. I am not from Mumbai and before coming here, I always pictured that I’ll be forced to put pen to paper, which is a much required reflex for a lazy – wannabe writer like me, the minute I see the sea. But so far, after living here for four years, after visiting almost every beach, every sea face, every bridge and even the lake next my house, I haven’t written a single word on it. Or about it. This evening in Juhu, made me wonder why.

This was an exercise in this course I am doing on creative writing, just to give all of you a backdrop. And when I first got to know that we were going to visit the beach, to get a feel of how ‘Travel writing’ actually feels, I laughed. I continued to laugh for quite sometime; because I was sure that that day everyone in my class was going to believe what I have felt for so many days. That travel-writing must be something, but it definitely isn’t what happens when you visit the sea in ‘Bombay’.

Excited at the idea, I got into an auto – rickshaw and stopped directly at the beach. The minute I stepped out, a young couple, seemingly of a very modest background with a kid of around 4-5 years came up to the rickshaw. They asked the rickshaw-wala how much would it take to get to Santacruz. They were visibly people who would just travel by bus. Perhaps then, it was a very special trip for them, and they wanted to end it with the luxury of a rickshaw ride. This made me smile. I realized that no matter how old the beach gets, it would still remain one of the most special places in ‘Bombay’. And it was special for me too, I realized. But then that question came up again. Why has it not gone into writing?

I was thinking these things while walking towards the beach, when the smell of yummy Pav bhaji filled my nostrils and carried me into a world that felt vaguely familiar, yet distinctly unexplored. In so many years, whenever I have come here, I have come here for a reason. Whether it was to meet somebody, clear my head, or eat the various varieties of expensively delicious street food it has to offer. However, I had never been there to just see the beach. Never let myself loose. Never felt it.

I was already eating the delicious Pav- Bhaji drooling in butter, feeling the cool breeze through the depths of my skin, as these thoughts filled my head. That’s exactly when I thought I had cracked it. Cracked how to finally put that pen to use. That day I was going to enjoy the beach just for what it was. Without any prior plans. Without any directions. Taking another chance, hoping that perhaps this time, when I leave from there, a few words will write themselves. What followed was heaven.

When I kept a bare foot on sand for the first time, I was convinced that this was the best thing that had happened to me that day. But minutes later, as I walked towards the sea and the cool comforting waves touched my feet, the previous experience snowballed itself. I can be so sure that even the best coffee in the world, with the best ambience you can ever have, with your most desired company, can’t unwind you in the way that those first few waves can.

Temptation led me to walk on the shore, and the tiring day broke its shell, giving way to bliss. The voices around felt unrequired and I wished to be able to spend the night there, in silence. I experienced how beautiful ‘not – thinking’ could feel, let alone ‘not- speaking.’ Perhaps that’s why the constant snack- sellers and the instant-photographers couldn’t bring a single line on my forehead. In fact I enjoyed their constant intervention. I liked the fact that amidst the crowd of so many, I mattered. And that one small snack that I bought from them could make a difference, well a huge difference going by their insistence to buy it, to a small minuscule part of the world.

And yet, I bought something only for my own sake, only when I wanted to.

I was thinking all this, when I suddenly remembered how not thinking anything was so much more fun, and quickly got back to that. I remember the rest of the visit, the little that was left after all this, as a blur of bargaining for artificial jewelry, a walk on the rough patch full of shells, and a thick line – up of stalls that become just a just a bunch of fluorescent lights from a distance.

When I was leaving however, I gave myself a secret smile, wondering what golden gleam of words would fill up the pages of my diary that night.

Today, it has been exactly one week since that trip. I have had three holidays and one half-day from my work- schedule and an ample amount of time to be able to write at least a single paragraph. But I haven’t written a word. However, in this one week that I’ve spent thinking about the place, and about where on earth my muse is, I have just found a vague answer.

I have figured that the beach, is a very very private place. No matter how many people you are surrounded with, what you go through is absolutely yours. Perhaps that is why countless people come to this crowded place to forget the world. And successfully manage to do so. And perhaps that is why, no matter how naked I want to be as a writer, and no matter how illuminating I want my emotional experiences to be, what I go through on a beach just can’t transcend into words. A part of it always gets lost in transition. And trust me, with an experience like this, you don’t want to touch it, unless you know you can do justice to it.

Yet the new question is that, why then, am I penning this, word after word, without stopping. Perhaps to prove, in writing, that travel-writing must be something, but it definitely isn’t what happens when you visit the sea in ‘Bombay!


To the Untimeliness of Love…

Published October 30, 2014 by Virgo293
Happens when you don’t expect it to,
Ends when that’s the least you want. 
Comes to you when you are amidst a crowd,
Gallops away when you want it around.
It comes with a jolt and goes with a pause,
At times doesn’t go away at all
It doesn’t stay with you either;
Fumbles around, does its rounds.
It’s finicky as a shot and calm as if you’re stoned,untimeliness_by_Fields
It’s rough to your heart, but soothens your soul.
It gives you what you have,
Takes up what you’ve got.
Screams, shouts;
Sorts it out!
It’s out there, in the open
And closest for the close…
 Simple yet complicated,
Complicated yet simple.
Uncooked when you’re hungry,
 Steamy when you are full.
cornelia-parker-and-the-untimeliness-of-waste-1351291016_b Hard to define,
Bizarre to discuss.
Don’t know why I am trying,
When I don’t even know what’s up!
Perhaps to mock the condition
And steal this happy laugh
Never mind the last stanza
Indulgence costs me enough…
From sinner to sin,
I migrate outwards and within.
  Walking it uptil this final applause,
Love, the untimeliest of them all, !

Not a friend!

Published August 3, 2014 by Virgo293

“I believe that a man’s growth is seen in the successive choirs of his friends.”

It’s quoted straight from a special friend of mine who sent us (me and the rest of our gang) a beautiful message starting with this, as a regard to friendship day. And the hungry muse-sick person that I am, I couldn’t resist using it to begin a long awaited post I have wanted to write forever. So please forgive the egocentric and self-seeking quotient of this post.

‘Friend’ is a term so loosely used in the world today. A term I use for my colloquies, class-mates, roomies, cohorts, anybody and everybody. In fact even bosses, mentors and teachers have this energetic spark of befriending everybody they train or teach. It has no boundaries and no definitions. If I can’t be a friend to my husband, I can never be a good wife. So goes the norm. And as if this was not enough, I am expected to be friends with the characters I am writing as well.


For god’s sake. They are not my friends. None of them. I can’t call up my boss at 12 in the night and say ‘Hey Dude… what’s up? In the mood for some chit-chat?’ I can’t do that because it is not required and more importantly because I wouldn’t want it.

Don’t get me wrong. I do not have a problem with a ‘friendly’ atmosphere in a classroom or workplace. But that is what it is. It’s friendly. We’re cordial, human and more than nice. But we aren’t friends. I don’t understand why people corrupt the term friend. And then create divisions like ‘ true friendship.’ False friendship literally means no friendship in the first place.

But the catch however is that if you are not a friend, doesn’t mean you are nothing. Each human being has a place of his own. Why belittle that value by comparing it to a set standard that nobody knows was set by who? As if being a friend is the only magnanimous thing to be. And everybody else falls into an oblivion not important enough.

Well it is not everything. Not for me at least. Every relationship you hold is equally valuable. It has a space and comfort of its own. And so is friendship. And I don’t believe in converting that into a parameter I judge every other relationship by.

I have a friendly boss, whom I can luckily call at any hour in the night. But he is not my friend. And I like it that way. I can share anything and everything with my mother. But she is not my friend. And I have quite a few other people, who I know will be by me in the ups and downs of my life. They are there, they are my friends and they are enough!

About my characters, they are definitely befriended. But by a side of me that is not as cynical and arrogant as this blog post.

Whether success is defined by the choir of your friends, is a story of another time. But I am definitely defined by the people in my life. All of them matter, Friends or not Friends!


P.S. There is a reason for the time I put this us. Belated happy friendship day!

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