19 April, 2014

balance as an aesthete

 There's crisp April sunshine, the happy tiredness after a morning run (get back in shape, you ain't the age to be geriatric!) and calls home to family. It's weird the way it's dark back home now.

 Work: coursework, projects, paperwork, upcoming internship and a research position from next sem. Busy, a bit intimidating, but pretty much exactly what I would like to be doing. A long weekend with Monday included (who said only Bengal has too many public holidays - they should come live in western MA) to power through the pending, and power down enough for  . . .

 Life: watching the sunrise while jogging along a rise, breathless, out of shape, but with the knowledge that I'll get there sometime. The dance of the squirrels in the trees. The first touch of springtime. Dreams of the village of Macondo, now that the last Buendia has left. More than the stories, Marquez reminded me of the time and age that I had first read them.
    And yes, tickets. Tickets for home.

 I find that mostly I am a militantly solitary person. Trying out long distance just reinforced the fact to me: I can be as into something as the next guy, but only in short intervals. A disproportionate amount of waking hours is "me" time. Which might mean a long hike, a longer book or simply discussing Asimov or Sholokhov with someone over coffee.

08 April, 2014

Soma Dreams - Part 2

 Following on from Soma Dreams:Part 1
  A cyber-punk take on a not-too-distant future Calcutta. Thanks to Kazarelth for starting this. After 8 years of various abandoned projects - including games, cut-scene Warcraft style movies, short films etc - we finally managed to finish something!

On fleet wings of terror, K and Dithi cannonball their way through the fleshpots of Charu Market. The flashing images suddenly gaining paramount importance in their headlong flight through vats advertizing a faultless liver or an unbroken heart. Monochrome etchings in burning retinas, limned in the high-contrast gleam of a thunderous high. Charu Market - literally the “flesh pot” - a potpourri of surrogate kidneys, ultra-modded cyberslaves and 12-inch schlongs for those not living in the rarified comfort of Highland Park and its on-demand vat-grown bio-replacements.

K sees Mandelbrot sets in the pattern of neon reflectance on rippled rain-puddles. Tinged with ultramarine streamers and other artifacts spilling over from his personal soma-induced universe into this one.

Dithi ducks into one of the more sinister biomod stalls, directed by some distant intractable clarion call in Dithi-verse. K notices  an intricate pattern of betel-leaf stains standing sentinel by the doorway, slip-sliding in some private significance. Drowned by the terror of the police chase.

Inside, they rest panting against a malformed Durga cyber (the traditional builders at Kumartuli drew the line at making a fleshly likeness of the goddess for the far-ranging tastes of certain residents of South Calcutta highrises). Dithi pukes. K ravenously laps some of it from her quivering lips as a realworld substitute for the soma juice dripping from buxom bosoms in his now-flickering somaverse. Almost time for the next dose. A dose that was not coming.


When K had opened the doors with the majesty of a Pharaoh, first thing he noticed were a few ants milling about near his feet. Ants that might have worn the ludicrously crinkled uniform of the local thana. He swept his hand in an imperious gesture of “begone, insignificant wretches!”
 A vicious thrust in his solar plexus with a battle-scarred lathi made him double up in surprise. These ants could bite! And incidentally, also saved him from a spinal fracture and possible lower-body paralysis (unless he did another legal job for the Kudghat hackers and saved up enough for a bodymod).

When K opened the door, A was listening to the Ride of the Valkyries while swinging a broadsword in some berserker Viking battle. Rising with the wrath of a Norse god of old, he and Dithi (no one knew why Dithi joined in as second fiddle) imperiously chucked the refrigerator at the shimmering shapes of the intruders clustered like Gaussian modes near the doorway.

It sailed across the unapologetic dinginess of the middle-class flat, over the huddled shape of K groaning as some vestige of the pain seeped through his soma haze and right into the face of the police raid.

In the searing clarity of heightened reflexes (or the slowing of time, did it matter honestly?) K dived for Dithi and plummeted out of the window (and into the local shitpile) as A thundered some terrible clauses from the Cyberterrorism Act in full judiciary mode at the livid policemen.

K realized that for some time he had been chewing on Dithi’s earlobe. Outside, the rain had ceased and he could hear the clamour of the usual metropolis life. They both strained to hear some dissonance, some mild inflection in the soundspace to signal their would-be captors drawing close.
Another day.

07 April, 2014


A friend mentioned today that for most conversations we look back at, we think of what else we might have said. How differently or better we might have made it to be.

 And then there are those effortless exchanges, where half-a-word is worth a day-long smile. Conversations where I would not change a single comma.

 Most of life should be a series of such exchanges, in an ideal world. This is a thought of magic unrealism that I shall strive to keep alive.

 Monday morning tomorrow. Au revoir!

31 March, 2014


You remind me at times of myself
The crossroads left unexplored
Or the fluttering of kites, slightly damp
Which we soared from a rain-drenched rooftop.

That day I would not worry as I write
To close a bracket or dot an 'i':
You were the gaps between my lines
Each silent toast with those cheapest wines,
The nameless harbour for my questing ship
Twixt grimy nights of tart-filled sleep.

Counting the trails of childhood stars
I sit at times and then realize
It was a time that passed me by
With neither cheer nor a sigh.

20 March, 2014

checklist - spring 2014

Things I have done this spring trip to NYC:

  • Been to an Irish pub on St. Paddy's Day
  • Got lost in Central Park until Google Maps came to my rescue
  • Danced with crazy friends in pjs early in the morning, before even brushing our teeth.
  • The famous New York brunch
  • Visited the MOMA, the Met (again)
  • Posed next to mammoths and tyrannosauri fossils  at the Museum
  • Watched Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart on Broadway in Waiting for Godot.
  • Went along as my friend started a queer book club in the city. Something I hope to stay in touch with and drop in as possible.
  • Discussed life, the universe and everything with the old friend
  • Discussed life, the universe (but not poetry, alas) with the Sistren to aforementioned friend
  • Watched old friends get along awesomely with the new one (and shamefully felt a slight pang of jealousy: how easy and quick it is for people to open up and step right into the lives of others!)
  • Survived my friend's intense chemical warfare.
  • Came home drunk as a lord, and then some more

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