Me

I read what I wrote in those days of self discovery and it scares me. Self discovery was a conscious process… a thought that happened every day, a pleasure that occurred everyday when I sorted the emotions and the feelings and I could match some and leave the others as abstract.

How much have I changed since I was that girl in a new city, discovering new things and new people? I have faded much since then and gotten cynical. I do not trust people any longer… it seems I keep expecting them to fail me, and I keep setting high expectations for the world. We both have gotten used to the disappointment.

But I still find that there are things that have not changed. The moments of fun… those moments of living… the moments of sobriety.  Now, I try to find people who fit into that scheme of things rather than just fly and enjoy the experience of meeting such a varied crowd.

I have no patience with fools and morons. I have nothing to say to religious fools and morons. There is too much hate in the world, too much money and not enough of it either.

I have grown more open and more closed. I read my old thoughts and I realized they were brief but they were… true. Have I lost the ability to speak the truth or have I just learnt to shield it in varied ways… such that only a few learn the truth if they know what to read?

The ambiguity still lives on in me, the contradictions. The 3 of me too… one who watches, one who does and the one who laughs. Among others.

 

Luring Me Away…

It isn’t so much the fact that I want it rather than the fact that I could have had it.

It isn’t jealousy but a twinge of ‘oh damn’.

The emotions I face when I hear about an ex-colleague doing really well. I guess it is only human but it is also a little difficult to admit to myself that I even feel such things. I paused when I heard something today and questioned myself – was that what I really wanted?

The reasons I quit my job are my own. One of them was that I felt that I needed change. I loved the company and some of what I did but the newness had faded and I felt I was stuck. So when I see others moving on, it makes me wonder if I didn’t try hard enough or gave up too soon.

But the real answer is – my goals were different. I never wanted to be in that field in the first place and then I grew to love it, a little. I liked the challenge and I was also good at it. But it isn’t what I really loved. And that was the problem.

Maybe I could’ve worked my way up to where I wanted to be – eventually. But patience is something I sorely lack and the only option I did see at that point was jumping out. Which I did.

But the dreams of that sort of glory and fortune are hard to die… which is why the twinges. And the need to remind myself that it wasn’t what I wanted to do. My goals, which were slightly different to start with, changed quite drastically in between. And I didn’t have the support or encouragement to go at them… it was all corporate-ship and a little… not my type.

So I thought about how it would be if I had that job… I would hate it once the newness wore off, like this one. By many standards, what I am doing is brilliant too. But the old problem still persists – this isn’t where I want to be.

Politics, intrigue, human interest, human rights – those are my dreams. I do not particularly care about currency wars. I wouldn’t have even learnt about these things if I hadn’t worked in those fields, for which I’m eternally grateful. I wouldn’t be able to talk about stock markets, indexes, profit statements, company results, strategies, inflation, GDP, housing, unemployment… I wouldn’t have ever bothered dipping into that world, let alone have such expert knowledge on the field.

Even if I did follow it, I wish I could write like my role model publications.

But it is funny that I need to remind myself yet again when fortune and glory come knocking on my door through a different route.

How many times have we told ourselves – “I’ll do this for a little while and then go do what I want”

I did that for a little while and now it is time to see how I can do what I want and not be lured away by promises of more money.

Link of the day: Photos the CommonWealth Games

It Rained

Day 184 / february rain, originally uploaded by andrea.pun.
It rained.
For a short while but it rained nonetheless, which is more important I guess. And that makes a whole lot of difference for the way I think.
I’m sitting in a corner at work… literally a corner. I could not talk to anyone now if I chose not to. Which is sort of interesting. And sort of depressing, if I choose to think about it that way.
I figured I was stressing out too much… and even thinking about it makes me feel a little stressed out. So I try not to think about it.
I started to unwind the red tape… let’s see how far I get before I get frustrated and either throw it all way or take one big scissors or a match to it all.
Me and a few friends had a conversation about money today.
When I was 21, I was idealistic. I was all about doing what I love regardless of how much money it would earn me. My plan was simple – I would work my way up to a big organization – something like BBC – and then I would be good enough that I could quit the regular job in a few years (around 5) and pick what I wanted to do. But then life interfered and I sort of skipped a couple of years on that.
Now, I’m halfway into my timeline and no where close to what I thought I would be doing. So I figured that I want more money.
Of course, if I got to do what exactly I want to do – whatever that may be – i might be willing to compromise. Otherwise, as a friend put it – you’ve already sold your soul. Might as well sell it for more.
Which was a bit of a jolt to my idealistic self… it is a lot more romantic to be thinking you’d do things for the love of it but the harsh reality is, in a place like this, you need money. Well, not if you were willing to live a particular way but I’m not.
I perhaps will not forgo my latte at Barista or a drink at some pub. I perhaps will never take to travelling by bus, no matter how much I want to save money. Ironically, this is the exact conversation I had with a friend a few months ago – about how I would be willing to make sacrifices if I wanted to do exactly what I want.
But the truth is this job has ruined me for the life of a struggling artist. I want to be a photographer, a writer, a traveler and a dreamer. And sheer laziness and fear is stopping me from most of it. I have lived two years of my life in this cocoon, despite the frustration.
I wonder if I will live this way for the rest of my life and wither away or if I will ever find the courage to go out there and live what I want to.
About the Photo: this isn’t one of mine. It is something I came across on Flickr and completely fell in love with. It rained today, after all. And this shows her just enjoying the rain. Sheer bliss… sinking into sheer bliss with a sigh of relief perhaps.
Edit: Totally unrelated, I realised if you search “Intersecting Lines” in the blog page on Google, my blog is the first one that pulls up. Kinda cool, eh?

The Bee

The restlessness creeps in again. I am not sure why.

Here I sit with a glass on wine, not really wishing to have a wine glass to pour that into, after a slightly different saturday evening. It was peaceful… it was crazy.

This restlessness is simple. It can be cured with a good book, a good movie and a good drink. I am bored of the clubbing scene here and yet I wish for that drink in hand and the loud music. It is perhaps sheer banality that pushes me into doing things which I wouldn’t be doing otherwise.

A friend of mine finally gathered the courage to quit her mundane job and do what she thought she’d like to try. I do admire her courage even if others call her a little crazy. Her job wasn’t what she was trained for – like mine is. It wasn’t even what she dreamt of doing all her life. Mine is.

That is the fear I guess… I knew this was what I wanted to do but now that I am here, this isn’t exactly how I had pictured her. Reality is often different, the adults say. The wise people tell us that we need to make adjustments and go on living. I don’t get that. Why adjust? Why not look for something that you really want?

I am a coward who doesn’t have the guts or the patience to go looking for it. I am too used to luxuries to give it up. Of course we need money for whatever it is to be done. But I also deeply envy those who have given up the job and just switched countries to do it. But why are these people that I meet mostly non-Indian?

I do not want to think about this. My head reels and my eyes burn. So I shall go back and delve into mundaneness and banality which will numb my mind, or least one active part of it.

Song of the day: A song I liked. I’ve no idea about the title

My Relationships

My ex comes to mind today for some reason. The ex who remained a friend for a long time even after we broke up, nearly leading me to believe that people can be friends after they break up too. I was young and naive. Then he began dating a neurotic woman who was insecure about everything. That was when I realised I was young, naive and also a little stupid because I remained friends with him even though we broke up because he cheated on me.

I figured he was honest enough to come and tell me that he cheated on me, and he deserved credit for that. It just strikes me today how little faith I have in my fellow beings… I give them credit for doing things or confessing to doing things that they weren’t supposed to do in the first place.

I met a girl today who seemed as upfront as I was… she didn’t worry about what people thought, and perhaps hadn’t been through enough misconception situations, so wasn’t scarred.

I used to live by my code book once upon a time. Now I have no idea where my code book is and I miss it. As fragmented and eccentric as I was, I like having a set of codes to go by. I went from saying I do not care what people think to actually caring… the rebelliousness became more of a show than reality.

As women, we face questions. As Indian women, we face more questions and judgement. And somewhere down the line, you really have to decide how to play it cuz ignoring it won’t help and now I realise that I chose the wrong way of playing it – by completely hiding the wrong things and being open about the others.

I figured I didn’t want to wash my dirty laundry in public. So I shielded the guy who cheated on me, I shielded the guy who led me on to believe he cared for me… because I thought it was a reflection on me. Why do I realise this little truth tonight when I’m sober and relaxed?

So what do I really want? Why do I get defensive when people ask me simple questions like “you drink?” Why do I need to care about what others think? Why have I been so unhappy and frustrated for so long? Why do I keep going in circles?

Why can’t I just say – yes I’ve loved (in whatever form I do understand) and it didn’t work out. Shit happens. Yes, I dreamt of being someone at one point and the dream changed. Yes, I’m not good at certain things and I’m good at some. Why can’t I say to hell with it all and pursue what I really want?

I know the answers to some of the questions there. And some of the answers start with M. The rest… I really don’t know.

There has to be some way out.

I miss having easy relationships. The boy meets girl, the boy likes girl sort of thing. Or did I already run through my share of that? If that is the case, it was half a lousy share. I like someone… the idea of someone rather. But how do you initiate contact with someone you met once and don’t remember if you had a connection.

That is the problem… too much self-doubt.

There really has to be some way out.

Song of the day: Ishqiya

Comments

I’ve got a fair number of hits on this blog since I started it. More accurate hits than the little counter I had on my blogger account, which would include my own numerous dips in the account while i was doing things like changing template etc. And while that really really encourages me, I wonder how many people are actually reading me?

Do people hang around here long enough to read a post or two or just long enough to realise that this wasn’t what they were looking for and go elsewhere? The stat counter doesn’t tell me if you read what I was writing or if you liked/hated what I wrote.

Perhaps we should have a little button saying “like/dislike/love”. Facebook has made us all more lazy so all people have patience for is to simply click yet another link. Or I am just not interesting enough to comment *worst nightmare coming up*

So the point here is simple – let me know you are reading me! Gimme some motivation to write on the days I don’t feel narcisstic enough!

***

Moving on to other things… Weekend’s here and the week’s never been longer! (Did i say that last week too?) I realised that though I love people reading me and like my old blogger followers to read me here (hugs), I realised I didn’t want everyone who followed my photoblog to be able to read this too. Anonymity, at least for a while, was the purpose. Anyhoo… I started the “Face for the week” on my photoblog and I started with mine. Well, I did start with a friend’s but as he was only visiting for a couple of days and is extremely unreliable, I just took a couple for the weekend.

And so far, its been fun but exxxxxxxxtremely annoying because everyone who has looked at it says “ooooh you look hot!”. Usually, I like to be called hot. I’ve been labeled ‘cute’ most of my life, so Hot is a good change. Except when I am trying to do something artistic and they think saying “you look hot” is a compliment. What about the rest of the features of the photo? Anybody ask me about lighting, the purpose, where I took that? And to note, most of them all of them have been guys saying that and when I glare at them… they revert too “ooh yeah the photo looks blah blah”. Why do guys think all a woman needs to hear is that she looks hot? There is a time and place for that. If you guys think all it takes to score with a woman is to say she looks hot, you are in for a long, cold run.

Remember the movie Hitch? He got somethings right – listen, respond, react. Do not patronize. Women have brains and it usually reacts really bad to a “you are hot” comment about her work.

Song of the day: So What – Pink

Uncertainty

Butterflies in the stomach. There are things I want. Oh I am dreaming again! And I am so scared that I will not be able to reach there. At 21, life is simple. You want it and the only thing you can think of is the ‘universe’ creating a block. At nearly 25, I am a little wiser, sadly. Maybe it is universe working in mysterious ways again… but with the confidence, self-esteem and various other such things taking a beating and being reborn, they are all a little tender.

But the dreams are here again. The familiar feeling in the stomach is back. Can you remember the time you wanted something so bad that you could almost see it physically in front of you and were shit scared that it was an illusion and it would disappear? I have not gotten to that stage yet. I am still in the stage where I see it… and with the stupid wisdom of age I am treading cautiously and second-guessing myself at every step. Did I do this write? Did I send that mail right? Should I have done more research? Omygod my friend knows him… should I’ve asked for an intro or would that be… unethical?

Yes, i know you will tell me to shut up, stop second guessing myself at every turn and just do it and leave the rest somewhere. But that is not me. That has never been me. And this is simply killing me. The things I thought were my strengths… some people tell me it isn’t. I am not sure if they are right or wrong. While it is a good thing that I do not believe them completely, the doubt sucks.

But I am dreaming again. I know what I want. I see stories written by people and I want to be them! I want to be there, doing that. Would my stories read the same to someone sitting in front of a computer somewhere right now? I don’t think so. They lack the passion, the drama of a story about a war-covered land and a little boy with a bird. They lack the personal touch of a first-hand story. But that is business. Business is colder than humans and that is the only way it works. It is a choice I made. But when I see those stories that I want to tell… I want this so bad that it scares me.

I will leave you with a little tale about a woman named Diana.

Dressed all in red, with her Marilyn Monroe-blond hair, she was sitting on a red couch at a mall. People walked around in that special frenzy of Christmas shopping. Would I have sat on the same couch if my friend had gotten a closer look at her? Probably not.

“I’m just resting my legs deary. You can sit there,” she said in a breathless voice. I couldn’t help but notice the shoes with the 4-inch heels and my own feet, covered in comfortable red sneakers, winced.

They were comfortable, she claimed. “The heels are never a problem. I just got tired ya know. So many people around today” she continued.

Diana liked to talk. She told me how much she paid for those shoes – 5 bucks (quite a bargain!) and where she got them. She also told me where she got the dress and the price. She liked to hunt up bargains… The shoes were good but the rest were fraying at the edges and the $3 deals didn’t really seem to be a good one. But Diana didn’t notice that. She liked her deals… she continued to pull out her little wallet, which once had been a dull gold but was now an ugly white. She saw only the beauty in the whiteness. She called it ‘silvery’. It was, in a way…

Diana is a singer… she did Marilyn Monroe impersonations at the mall a couple of days a week. That explains the hair, I thought. And the voice. She sang the same opera-sort of thing Monroe did.

“I even do the whole blowing dress bit. You should come see me,” she said. I nodded. I could sense my friend’s amusement behind me. “I perform here tomorrow. You should come!”

I agreed to. And asked her if I could take a picture of her. She was really happy to pose for me. Except, when I asked her if I could mail it to her somewhere, she declined.

“You keep it darling. I’ve so many photos. Just today this woman gave me some photos,” she tapped an envelope in her bag.

In all the time I’ve been taking photos of people (which is less than a year) I never had anyone decline a copy of their photo. I’ve had people stress that I send it to them. But not decline.

A guy walked by, casually waving to Diana. He paused to talk to her but realised she was talking to us and wanted to walk by. But she stopped him anyway. It was classic Diana… she spoke to him like she spoke to me… I wondered if anyone could be as naive as her. Or as good as actress as her. Ryan was embarassed to talk to her, particularly when I asked how they knew each other. It didn’t dawn to me till then that Diana could have another side business. But she wasn’t embarassed or worried. I don’t think she thought of herself as anything more than a singer… and taking on lovers like Monroe perhaps did. Ryan was cute… Diana wasn’t worried when he flirted with me, so I flirted back till he asked me out. Well, if you consider “What you doing for Christmas? I have a party to which I’m going out with this Chinese girl. But I’m free tomorrow, if you’d like to go out with me for a drink.”

Men! I guess she definitely knew how to handle them. But all Diana wants is to go to Paris and become a singer and sit in a sidewalk cafe in front of the Eiffel Tower, drinking French coffee.

She never traveled out of the state she was born in and the state she currently lived in, a 18-hour drive from one another. She doesn’t own a passport and perhaps will never make it out of the country. Is she really as naive and sweet as I thought she was? I don’t know. But I sure hope she continues to find her bargains and continues to dream.

Song of the day: Incredible Strings Band

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lX33aJSE-2o