victoria secret beer

intoxication and alcohol in general has been a bit of a question mark for the past nineteen years of my life. with a mother who looks down upon on a bottle of anything but water or fresh juice as a punch to the healthy body and a father who is a common recipient of hard liqour but drinks thrice in a bluemoon, alcohol has never passed the boundary of an acquaintance with me. this is probably the primary reason for my curiosity about it, a recurring question being ‘oh what’s it like to be very tipsy or, god forbid, even drunk i wonder?’ inebriation is supposedly a rage and i wanted to know what it felt like to be on the other side; but in the past few months, i’ve never gone past two beers which just made my head hurt, nothing worse.

i’m going out on a limb here, hoping that my parents or any of my adult relatives for that matter, don’t read this blog of mine anymore because i’ve got an experience to share which they – Indian parents who claim to be modern and are truly so in several fields,  are in actuality not very open about other important things that may matter very much so in my future – might not necessarily be happy about.

a week and a half ago, my friends and i were prepared to test our tolerance level – we downed about six beers each. you needn’t be alarmed – we were at home, with every level of security and with the comfort of being able to use the loo seven times, if need be. with four beers down, we were just a little over tipsy and it was turning out to be a very good and fulfilling evening, spent with the best of my friends. with the sixth beer gulped down, i was very proud of my tolerance level.

besides the many voice recordings riddled with drunken guffaws and sloppy chuckles we sent to our other good friends and the spilling of a few sips of beer onto the floor in a tipsy haze, we seemed completely sober. when i had to leave my friend’s home to go pick up my mother (my driver uncle was around, still no reason to be alarmed; also i don’t know to drive yet) from her friend’s place, i like to think that i did a very good job of putting up a sober act; that was until my mother – who has the nose of a bloodhound, apparently – asked me, “did you drink anything, what’s that smell?” and while my heart went berserk and plunged into panic mode, i replied, “no we just drank lemon juice, and that smell is victoria secret beer – i mean, victoria secret perfume, the new one i got, remember? ha ha ha.” my stars must have been beautifully aligned that evening for my mother was too distracted to understand my rushed words.



some many seasons ago, i met a girl so unlike me that i fell in love with her. she was as blunt as the end of a cigarette, her words sharper than the edge of a knife. she claimed to have a stone for a heart, but there were moments when she would let its weight sink and her feeling float above. one could say she was a work of art: bold, messy, d i f f i c u l t, but in progress. when her confusing, cloudy world entered the view of my rose-coloured glasses, i was caught off g  uard. i had never felt so dis or ie nted; it was a feeling like no other. i liked girls? i liked girls, too.
in all my years, i hadn’t had such an enormous question mark
towering over


i knew i was utterly spent when i caught my heart f l utt e r ing as soon as she laid her head on my shoulder, resembling the perfect word in a poem to be italicised; i knew i was absolutely hopeless when she had placed her cold palm just under my collarbones to check my temperature, my cheeks as red as the nail polish i never wore again.
and i knew i was a  g o n e  r         when she playfully patted my behind and exclaimed that i had, “a great ass”. she was everything i was not. on most days, it was  fucking infuriating, but on some days it was absurdly endearing. i hated a lot of things about her: her ambivalence, her apathy, her incessant !!!! swearing, her l aid back attitude about nearly e v e r y t h i n g, how she’d brush over things that mattered to me, how annoyingly good she looked in the worst pictures i took of her, amongst other things. but the things i liked about her? they outweighed everything else: her subtle yet well-meaning caring side|, her honesty, her sense of humour – just as terrible as mine, her courage, her terribly underestimated mind, a selflessness that i found lacking in almost everyone else – she  had  my  heart.

“does she feel the same way?”

i worry every other minute, but as i write type this i realise that it doesn’t matter after all, [[[[does it?]]]] it’s not like i can suddenly! stop loving her for being, well, her. it’s going to take tick time tock for this moment to p a s s,  so i might as well revel in the days of our growing ~comfort~ around each other, be it as friends or just a someone new in each other’s lives.
until this situation comes to a close, i plan to lurk around her – just to make sure she’s not too self destructive; i’ll hover around for a little while longer…, to be able to laugh with her at the plainest of things, until the “rational” side of my mind realises that there are other things to work upon. after all, i want to do great things, i just don’t know what

: a slightly exaggerated version of what i experienced when i had a crush on a girl
last year


the story of a bath

the brush of my clothes i miss
amidst the bare of my body,
surrounded by cold tiles, colder air
that invades my personal space.
water begins its descent,
from the shower onto ice beneath and
the fall of the drops splash my face
as i stand aside, waiting
for the water to steam.
goosebumps mark my body;
unlike a temple, i’m not proud
of the spots, the skin, the hair
i see so clearly in the mirror;
nearly always melancholy
in this place, i stand outside
of my comfort zone
in the cold
my eyes
see the steam
rise into the air and
under the water i stand
to wash away my thoughts;
the hot water first strikes my skin
but later caresses gently,
i breathe in deeply and sigh
as the mirror fogs up and i only see
a blur that shows me mercy
from my own self; the water so hot
almost gets under my skin
to help my highly strung nerves,
unwind from within;
my toes curl, fingertips prune
signalling it’s time to leave,
to do more important things,
than drown in self pity,
and i emerge outside
with steam rising
from my body.

poor mr. cabbie

hey mr. cabbie,
what’s on your mind,
is it the family of three
that you saw passing by?
or is it the little brown sparrow
that’s been a stranger to your eye?

hey mr. cabbie,
what are you thinking about,
is it your favourite apple tree,
that you recently saw cut down?
or is it the absurdly grey cloud in the sky,
its shape akin to that of a dead butterfly?

hey mr. cabbie,
what was your last thought,
was it the news on the telly
about the big bleak future that is your next stop?
or do you feel the choking breeze,
and hear the greens on your usual route cry?

hey mr. cabbie,
you better watch your step,
the war is coming, and this is your warning
the wheels of your car will screech in worry,
the roads will crack, the building will fall
and the earth will sneer, bulls-eye.

remembering grandness

there are a lot of things i remember about my grandmother – her crooked smile, her soft cheeks, her basin ke ladoo infamous for inducing a greed in me i wasn’t quite acquainted with, her colourfully simple sarees, her sharp fingers tickling me every time she passed by, but most of all i remember her beautiful long, brown hair.
i have always had short hair, never longer than the length of my back. but i have always loved my nani’s hair, who cut it as infrequently as possible. when i was small, and she was younger, her hair exemplified the advertisements on hair serums; to be able to sit behind her petite frame and have the length of her hair all to myself – to carefully brush, to patiently braid or to just be able to run my tiny, pudgy fingers through the silky, soft strands was an absolutely delight.
i grew older but nani’s health refused to keep up; one of the consistent symptoms of her deteriorating health was loss of her hair. i distinctly remember that each time she came home for the holidays, there seemed to be lesser hair to braid and play with, but more hair to sweep up. before nani’s passing away, i had the opportunity to be able to say goodbye, i just didn’t know it was forever. i was leaving for a camp in the mountains, i knew i wouldn’t be able to visit her in the hospital for another two weeks.
the day i returned home, i received the news. today, when i recall the image of my fragile but still smiling like the happiest and most satisfied grandmother, i remember her hair. no longer the thick, brown braid it used to be: her mostly white hair greasy with hospital grime, thin like the width of a rope, splayed across the white bed sheet. her face tired, but her smile radiant. her grip on my hands weak but her loving words whispered to me straight from her failing heart. it pains me that i don’t remember the last words she had said to me just before i left. but i do remember her tight grip on my hand, her happy sigh when she felt the presence of her youngest grandchild near her bed, and her relieved sigh when she knew i was there to stay a little while longer.
next week my grandfather, an absolute gem, is hosting a memorial award ceremony marking one year since he lost his beloved. he will be awarding the students of the school where my grandmother studied – for their meritorious performance throughout the academic year. my entire family is going to be there and together we will reminisce about her grandness.

specks of dust

we are the forgotten comma,
and the neglected semi colon;
we are like words of gratitude
not conveyed, never felt.
we yearn for a moment of glory,
a touch of honour and a whiff of fame,
but we forget to be happy,
what a terrible shame.
we are all specks of dust
floating upward, frontward
in the light,
while our life takes off,
and we miss the flight.

about my parents

i am eighteen years old and only in the past couple of years have i realised how utterly grateful i should be for my incredible parents. there have been days when i wasn’t an easy child to deal with, but all i ever received from their end was love. their parenting has been blood, sweat and tears, in the purest sense.
my parents have raised my sister and i gently and patiently, appreciated our every achievement, no matter how small the scale and acknowledged our every effort. their upbringing has got me well acquainted with the feeling of being loved unconditionally, sans any terms and conditions.
in my years as a pre-teen, my relationship with my mother wasn’t as healthy as it is today. but since the past decade she has grown along with me, even more so. she has always been a kind and loving woman, there’s no denying that. but since her indulgence in spirituality, my mother has transformed into the most calm and collected person i know. her mental and emotional strength has sky-rocketed, so much so that she can not only bear the weight of my father’s, my sister’s and my burdens but become the unexpected sunlight during rainy season. to see my mother radiate positivity under dire circumstances and spread comfort to everyone around her is astounding. there are days, however, when her unfailing optimism irks me, because sometimes i just want her to agree with me and say, “that sucks, my dear”. but after all that she has done for me, i would do whatever it takes to see her happy and proud. now that i’m leaving for college, she’s been remembering my childhood days, when all it took to make me giggle and gurgle was raspberries on my stomach and tickles on my chin.
my father is a gentle man, especially when it comes to me. it makes me a little sad that he’s not around as much as i would like him to be, but that’s okay. i understand his commitment to his work; being a doctor isn’t easy at all, particularly not when you’ve got hundreds of patients lined outside of your cabin, waiting to share their troubles. he may be seated on the sidelines, but he’s the best cheerleader i’ve ever had. he is easily swayed by others’ opinions, but he also gives a lot of importance to what i have to say – which i appreciate so much; and he always prioritises my happiness. no matter how many birthdays i celebrate, my small hand in my father’s soft and tender hand will forever be one of my favourite feelings in the world.
parenting is a mammoth task, but massively rewarding if done right. but here’s the thing – you don’t raise your child with the goal of getting something in return. that makes your child a liability waiting to be balanced out. my parents have given me the freedom to study what i enjoy, pursue what i’m good at – no matter the scope. i can’t ever thank them enough; my happiness is linked with theirs, there’s no otherwise. i aim to please my parents.