Monday, 29 June 2009

Kamikaze bear

Sizzling. I was sizzling. And I don’t mean in a red-hot, sensuous kind of way. The sun was high – it was around noon. I was already sweating after dance class, now I could feel it dripping down to the small of my back.

Dazed and on the verge of heat-stroke (yes, I tend to over-dramatise things a tad) I blinked blearily when my bus finally arrived. I clambered on, shoving people out of my way, and managed to find myself a window seat. Then I got a ticket, switched on my iPod and closed my eyes in bliss.

I was nearing home when a random, cheeky boy dumped his black backpack on my lap from outside the bus. (Welcome to India, where strange occurrences are common). Now this is normally done when the bus is overflowing with people and there’s not much standing space either, so the ones lucky enough to be seated are dumped with the bags.

I looked around. Not so crowded bus. Not in the least. And where the hell was the cheeky boy. Why the hell did he even pick my lap to dump it on. I was far away from the doors of the bus. The middle-aged lady sitting next to me glanced at the bag and back at me. I shrugged.

Why, why, why. Why me. Then I thought. What if it was a bomb. And visions of me exploding and meeting an early death suddenly bombarded me. Visions of friends not knowing for several days, and of my brother crying in his white kurta, while lighting the pyre on which my corpse had been kept… the middle-aged lady was looking at me again. I tried subtly re-adjusting my posture and shaking the bag to see what was inside. Upon looking around, the boy was nowhere to be seen. Maybe he had disappeared after planting the bomb. Yellow-hearted, non-kamikaze, fool. And then I thought. What the hell. If some random passer-by dumps his bag on me, why should I allow it. I live in a free country. I can check what’s inside.

So yours truly vehemently tore open the bag. And my breath stopped.

It was a hideous looking creation. Purple in colour, carrying a heart which claimed ‘‘you’re special’’. The teddy bear looked at me with its beady eyes, as if chastising me. And behind him, were a stack of notebooks.

I felt incredibly stupid. Maybe I did have a heat-stroke after all. Or maybe Mr Bear was a ticking bomb.

I thought again. Naah.

Monday, 15 June 2009

chronicles of the absurd

Isn’t it absurd how you can suddenly see old friends in a new light? It’s a class A cliché, I know. But this morning when I met Manu, I thought… why not him? I mean, he has had the hugest crush on me ever since we met. Everytime he comes to town he wants to see me, he’s always saying how nice I look. And look at Zayed. Four years later, I’m wondering what the hell I’ve been doing with him. I think I only remember being happy in the first year.

Isn’t it absurd how I can continue to think these things, but still remain with Zayed. What is it with bad boys? Is there something about the XX chromosome which is drawn only to philanderers and lying nicotine addicts?

And isn’t it absurd how no matter how well you know someone, an outsider ends up having more insight into said person than you do? I never realised Zayed had serious psychological problems till a friend of mine suggested it to me.

It’s even more absurd how people in his life, from his wife to his kids, have never noticed it either. I was wondering whether I should tell my mother about it. But of course, that’s an option only if I want to be branded insane myself. She would ask why, why I thought my father had “psychological problems”. And what could I say. Because he’s screwing his 20-year-old stepdaughter? Mentally and physically? Nope. Definitely not an option. Could I tell him about it? Probably not. Although, perhaps I could blackmail him into seeing a psychiatrist. No more making out or fondling or sex till Zayed visited Dr Nair.

Isn’t it absurd how we always, always hope for the best, though we are too weak to fight the atrocities of life? It really is. It’s ridiculous how I dream of a normal life, but still melt everytime he touches me. It’s silly how the whole world thinks I’m a sensible girl, but every few nights I let my step father do unmentionable things to me. And it is completely absurd how in love he is with my mother, and how she has never noticed anything out of the ordinary.

Life is just plain absurd. Sometimes it’s comic, but most times it’s just terribly tragic for me. I wonder if Manu would want to be with me if he knew just how tragically absurd my life was.

No. I don’t think so either.