Wednesday, August 31, 2005

thought for day.

In Godard's Breathless, a famous poet is asked to confess his deepest desire. "To become immortal," he replies. "And then die."

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

know your atomisation

People make their own cities; this much is clear to me after a month's go at something resembling a new life. One of the very useful words we learnt from early Marxist studies is 'atomisation': not, as Google Glossary claims, solely "the reduction of a liquid to a very fine spray." Apparently it has more to do with relationships in an industrial society breaking down to the point where all social interaction is restricted to professional and commercial ties.

G. BUDDHA: Helloes! Been there, done that, got the potted plant.
K. MARX: But I speak to the hearts of the youth! I am a thinker! A German! A king among comrades!
STALIN: This is why we put him on meds in Russia. Mwahahahahaha.

Anyway. I am atomised.


current musix: janis joplin - piece of my heart

Friday, August 19, 2005

*tapping mic*

Hello, check.

Using Blogger for Word to post. Horizon all clear, day bright and sunny.

But, how it be?

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

i got soul (but i'm not a soldier)

Another short piece of fiction, momentous only because it's my first since moving to Hyderabad.

Written for the paranoia challenge in my writing community. A little over twenty minutes, 463 words. Minor edits to some foul language in v1.0.

Credit to Joseph Heller for a paraphrased quote and The Killers for the title.



All These Things That I've Done

If you think about it, thinks Achilles, this whole war is an excuse for killing him, an elaborate game on the parts of the Ones In Power - bloody effing pigs, begging their pardon - to seek him out, gun for him and obliterate him, to pound his skin and hair and bones and jizz into grains of foreign soil.

"Well then," he says, "I am not going to fight."

Patroklos reads serenely from the seditious literature one of the newer Armernian recruits was caught writing. "Yossarian," he reads, "they're out to get everyone."

Achilles kicks him with all the savagery in his human heel.

"If you think about it", he says, "it began even before the war, didn't it?" He steps out of the tent and walks along the sand, kicking up great shovelfuls of it every twenty-fifth step - the number of years he has lived. The moon is a baleful orb, paler than his mother and less pretty (much less prettier than himself). "I was born to mismatched parents. If they'd stayed together I might have had a normal childhood, grown up to actually like looking after my cows and horses that the Trojans have never so much as looked upon. I might never have had to go to school with a centaur who taught me what it means to be human. I might never have become a girlie-hatin’ cross-dresser. I might never have liked you enough to consider going to war in arms with you worth all the stinking trouble."

"If you doubt now, Achilles," Patroklos says, rubbing his chin, "nothing's going to remain simple any longer."

"What do you mean?" asks Achilles. "Nothing is simple, Patroklos. Everything is conspiracy. The world is spinning about us as we stand here by the will of the gods, the ones to whom this beach is a strip of a chessboard and we mere pawns."

Patroklos bites into a peach. "Aren't those my lines? I'm the smart one, after all."

Achilles blows his nose into the pockmarked sand. "That's true," he concedes.

"And how do you know they even exist, the gods?" asks Patroklos. "Have you ever seen them?"

"Well," Achilles begins with great sarcasm, "just my, you know, mother."

"A scion of the world's second-biggest publishing house," says Patroklos.

"Yeah, and?" asks Achilles.

"Have you ever seen her change someone's life?"

"She ruined my dad's."

"Helen's ruined thousands, and she's only of dubious descent."

"Hm," reflects he of the river of red hair. "If you think about it."

"Yes."

"I've never actually seen Helen."

Patroklos grimaces. "I have come to realize," he says, "that one can never trust the media."

Achilles thinks about this.

"The media's out to get me?"

Patroklos scratches his neck and spits out a stone. "It'd make a great poem."



As always, for Emily and Lindsey, with thanks.


current musix: pink floyd - shine on you crazy diamond (parts I-IV)

Friday, August 12, 2005

Thursday, August 11, 2005

logic. speak it?

Huh.

Tiring as the whole drivel about political correctness is, even more so is the drivel about NOT being so. Study why and how people cluster, why certain national traits endure over centuries, why certain cultures embrace technology and economic growth and others resist them, beseeches David Brooks of all 18 year olds with big brains (And just which ones are those?) This is the line of inquiry that is now impolite to pursue, he says.

It is not. It can be redundant, immoral and all-too-humanly offensive to ask questions with certain purposes in mind. But everyone with half a brain knows that there are always questions that need to be asked, and asked in certain ways, to find right answers.

But multiculturalism, says Brooks, preaches that all groups and cultures are equally wonderful. Not! Multiculturalism treats all cultures as equal, period. Anything more is a matter of context; anything less is injustice. That is all.

I am just so glad that all the eighteen-year olds with "big brains" I know of are studying literature.

Friday, August 05, 2005

TGIF, baby.

Two weeks back I didn't even know what that acronym meant, good honest gods of the hearth! Well, I did know it was "Thank God It's Friday," but in typical Supriya-fashion I made the mistake of assuming it was no more than a nice restaurant somewhere in Mumbai. And that only because I have cooler friends who informed me of the happy fact.

Incidentally, does it still exist? What is left standing? I've been hearing reports about the ToI's stellar coverage of what the All The Right People did when Mumbai - my city, my home, my people, mine, mine, all mine - was doing time at the apocalypse, but I with my access to The Hindu and its sober, clear-eyed reportage have only felt more divorced from it all, because there is no emotion I can attach to those reports seen through alien eyes; no regret, no remorse, no righteous anger. Only an irrational survivor's guilt, and a need to be home and to be helping and suffering with the people I've travelled to college with every day for the last five years. Ridiculous, I know; if I hadn't moved out that very week I'd have been cursing the heavens and very likely stayed curled up in a small useless ball at the edge of my bed - but I would still be there, to look out of the window. (In the howling wind, comes the stinging rain.)

Yes, in other news, I've been busy. It's strange not to be a student anymore; I don't feel like I've earned this money - well, technically I'll be earning it at the end of this month - and a comfy house in a comfy locality in Hyderabad and good food and an utter sexpot of a desktop at work (which is called Bono, by the way). Is it work until you bring emotional baggage and unironed clothes and hard-won opinions on everything under the sun in to be examined by everyone else each morning? Three years of English class, and I am left unprepared for the divorce between iSupriya and the new yuppie raising a fresh and wrinkly face up to the corporate sun.

*struggles into itchy new skin*

To all I stretch the open arm; send me bloglinks and postcards! Speaking of which, I need to mail some of you my address.

Finally, a shoutout to Aishwarya and June. I hope you're both doing fine. I feel very big sisterly towards both of you right now and I hope you resent it greatly. Know also that I miss you very much. Mail me? Many hugs.

Alright folks, I'm out. See you soon.

*clinks coffee mug tiredly and switches off Bono's screen*

current musix: natacha atlas - ne me quitte pas