Wednesday, September 16, 2009

target practice

I still do not have a driving license in this country. This gives me that unwanted opportunity of waiting for taxis, some times under a scorching 50 degrees. Under the sun, there is very little thinking you can do...very often the only thing I end up doing is an oath I undertake which goes like.." I am getting that license next week"...It has been 3 three years now.

Under comparatively better conditions for living things to venture out; I have waited for taxis. During those sessions, I stop repeating my oath and look around at the drama that is being played all around.

Everyone does one thing first after they arrive; to check for signs that tell you who arrived first. It could be that guy who is almost in the centre of the road planning to stop the next taxi with his chest. Or it could be that mother with four children who looks daggers at any one who joins the queue. But the one who gets the ride is often somebody else. You could categorize them as the shameless, the arrogant, the fast or some times the lucky.

But if you choose to stand back and watch what happens during those moments when the taxi is still a thought on a every one's mind; theres is plenty for the eye.

The 30 something male in tight T-shirt and denims with cigarettes, mobile/s in hand looks like he was paid by some covert governmental agency to measure every female's arse with that invisible tape he had been provided with. Two school kids play target practice with a pepsi can and the waste bin fixed on the sign board. Every miss spills a few drops on to those who are waiting.
The construction worker who is used to talking over the din of concrete mixers at work; talk loudly to his friend about how the "item" at the dance bar gave him "looks" last night. The father with his teenage daughter looks on wishing he could kill people by merely thinking about them.
The asian couple displays some affection in public and the kids find the target practice sort of uninteresting any more. The beauty queen born with the mobile phone, plugs in the hands free because the device is burning her ears.
The Executive in a suit looks at his fake Rolex for the umpteenth time.

Finally a taxi arrives. The man controlling traffic in the middle of the road jumps on to the pavement to save his life. The kids throw the pepsi can on the road and in a flash grab the door handle. The woman and her kids gets in their way. She shouts, grabs one of the kids' cap and throws it away. While that kid retreats to get his cap, the mother herds her kids into the car.

The beauty queen starts her next life-saving call and the 30-something moves a bit closer to her. There is another guy in the middle of the road ready to risk every thing he has. More mothers with more children are arriving. I take another oath..

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


There came that time in my life when the pen needed more than words to go...a place where some of you have been to; the crash site of elusive, ephemeral moments. And I asked myself; what happened? How did I get here? What was it about?

Some times something can pick you by the short hairs and fling you around. Some thing called ...I do not know what...

Or maybe I got it all wrong.

You carry around beliefs about yourself that make you feel special, desirable, precious and innately good. After the initial phase where you take care of all those parts of your essential being; you put it down on a shelf for safe keeping. You assume that they have done their duties; a rest is fine.

But others do not rest. After all you were always under their eternal surveillance. They put those sticky yellow post-its on your back. All unawares. You carry them around. Slowly, you become the tag you carry.

Confused,you look around. You see someone else with a similar tag. You smile and then warily sit down for a coffee at a table.

What took you there? Deprivation? Angst? Boredom?

This is the real potent part of it all.

To sit down with your back towards the rest; the post-its on your back saying it aloud; but you go on to sing a song....over a coffee.

You carved out this time from your life for a song or a coffee? Or was it for something you can't explain? What is that dumb excuse?

I know just this much..It isn't mine to command it....let the flow wash me ashore...

When I find out all the reasons
Maybe I'll find another way
Find another day
With all the changing seasons of my life
Maybe I'll get it right next time....(GNR - Estranged)

Red, Yellow and Stinky