aristera says

Sunday, December 25, 2005


the last post

this is the last post. for many personals reasons. but it was great fun. will still go read other blogs and comment. but i wont write anymore. it is so much fun to read chamique, casablanca, accidental fame junkie, bluegreenflysplat, closetalk. but i dont want to write anymore. it is creating animosity and bitter feelings. wish it didnt, but then like i kept saying about wishes... hazaron khwaishey aise ke har khwaish pe dum nikle, bahut nikle mere armaan lekin phir bhi kam nikle...


joy to the world

am having a great weekend. the works. friends. bonhomie. food. everything. friday night i went out to an all time favorite hawwain shack, with the dj belting out the expected favorites. met a friend who is in town after a long time. had a blast. got sloshed. grooved away to 'losing my religion' and lotsa ABBA and madonna and sting and all the classic rock and pop of the 70's and 80's.
chritmas eve was even better. went for a very christmasy dinner with friends in bandra. decorations and everything. was happy the minute i sat down for the meal. and it got progressively better. christmasy food does that to you. punch, pumpkin and melon seeds soup, pretzels and melba, roast chicken in rosemary sauce, christmas pudding. oh, was so stuffed. and then to mount marry's church for mid night mass. the first time i ever went for one. the bandra mc's killed me. best suits and best dresses. soooo mc! garish but in the christmas spirit, it seemed fitting. sang carols. was dazed that my friends knew some of them by heart. then i realized that they had all gone to mc schools. st.cathedrals and the st.others. i just read from the booklets they gave us. i dont particularly like em mc schools. am glad i didnt go to one. hehe. lets go for a puja, people. and see me chant the mantra like a pundit. can do the havan too! hah!
just made myself some coffee now. its christmas. shooting mails to friends. going to meet my associate. will get good cake! am all merry. the good life. like aparna would have said "bhalo khaabar, bhalo wine, onek mauja tomar jeevanay".

Wednesday, December 21, 2005


Parochial outlook and food

Artist is the angel of surplus. Tagore and his aesthetics. The genius shrouded in unwanted reverence by the middle class bengali (a dangerous breed in itself). Take away the unwanted cult-like reverence and you have one of the greatest thinkers of the century. Tagore and gandhi. Gurudev and the mahatma. While the latter was more austere and almost anti-aesthetic, gurudev was more rich in his aesthetic thought. The feminists would hold a lot against him, what with his regressive “gruhalaxmis” and the petite-dainty female depictions, his womanising way. But all said and done, deconstructing tagore yeilds a lot. His short stories, take on society, his writings on art and beauty and especially his view on the ‘civilization project’ ( I abhor the term, I swear).

As for phal’s tag (no one ever defies her, ever)… the 10 best foods and places to find them… here goes…

1.indonesian satay at lemon grass. Its an all time favorite restaurant.

2.tandoori pomfret at gazalee, this down market location and bad ambience is shrouded in the divine food and spicy sol kadi.

3. aloo poshto and fish fry at o calcutta. I swear I could die.

4. lemon souffle at arthurs theme in poona. Feather light. Subtle. Heaven.

5. pizzas and honey chicken made by my old friend arghya, who is across a sea now. Yumm!

6. lemon chicken at ‘china town’, ashram road in ahmedabad.

7. parathas and chutneys at parathey wali galli. Purani dilli, chandni chowk. Hai!

8. anjeers in winter. Its pure sex. Trust me.

9. pethas from mathura (the agra ones are gross and sickeningly sweet). But these are sublime. How could man make something so fruit like and so juicy?

10. roadside chicken shawarma. Lebenon you rock, country! Juicy raddishes and pickled veggies, cream, mayo, garlic and succulent chicken.

Monday, December 19, 2005


chronicle of the death of a blog foretold

some blogs die suddenly. some are abandoned (the worst thing to do). so are euthanasiad (or whatever its conjugation in the past perfect tense is!), so die a slow death. this blog seems to be dying slowly. dont know why. blogs die too. this one is gonig to die soon.

He came to read

He came to read.
Two or three booksare open;
historians and poets.
But he only read for ten minutes,
and gave them up.
He is dozingon the sofa.
He is fully devoted to books -
-but he is twenty-three years old,
and he's very handsome;
and this afternoon love passed
through his ideal flesh, his lips.
Through his flesh which is full of beautythe heat of love passed;
without any silly shame
for the form of the enjoyment.....

Constantine P. Cavafy (1924)

Sunday, December 18, 2005


kant and disinterest

finally have given up my last claim to self preservation. had always decided that i will never drink by myself, at home. ever. dont know why i bothered. buying myslef a big bottle of vodka. it doesnt matter. just had two large drinks. i dont care about anything anymore. itsdownright sick. how wrong could i have gone? just how wrong?

Saturday, December 17, 2005


Small town india aur hum

A very indulgent 3 day holiday of sorts. In the midst of crazy work load. And terrible state of mind. Too much angst. Am upset with friends. Disappointed in myself. Big time. But the break is doing me good. Met a very very dear friend. Someone I hadnt met in almost a year. We bonded instantly. It could have been awkward. Thank god it wasn’t. sometimes meeting an ex can be a bit upsetting. But luckily it wasn’t. love lost, yes, in the prosaic sense of the term. Would never consider anorther go at it. But we still love each other in a more pious (corny!) sense. In naseer turabi’s words “ adaavatein thee, tagafull tha, ranjishey thee magar….bichadney wale mein sab kuch tha – bewafaai na thee. Who humsafar tha magar usse humnavaeen na thee”. Much against aparna’s warnings, will translate for the philistines. There were hostilities, there were differences, there were complaints but never infidelity. The person was a companion, but we did not communicate.

An ex who is now a soulmate. I know I will never find anyone like that again. Love lost. But finally I am not bitter about it not working out. Atleast not the way I wanted it too. My boraat! Got me loads of gifts. A jamdaani shirt, a wallet, a nehru jacket, bamboo tongs, mushroo piece, slip ons. And love. We might not meet for the longest time. Different countries. We perhaps may never meet again. I don’t know. “ bichhadtey waqt unn aankhon mein thee humaare ghazal. Ghazal bhi woh jo kissi ko abhi sunaee na thee”. Most beautiful. The beloved knew what I had to say. And it became needless then to say it.

Will go to rani-no-hajeero or the queens tomb. To buy ajrak (a textile print in indigo originally from sindh) for a friend who I hope will be something more than a friend someday. We have a date on Saturday when I get back to bombay. Out of the Blue of Hawwain shack. Sindh jo ajrak for my delhi friend who is now in bombay. A friend who introduced me to sufiana ways. I get mixed signals. But knowing my bhaggo I think it will not work.

Its gonna be christmas soon. Its cold. Wish I have people around me on christmas. I don’t think I will do anything on new years. I don’t feel welcome anywhere anymore. I’d rather just sleep.

Its already been 3 days.

The break is over. Am typing this on my way back to bombay. Am immensely sad. Cant convey the sadness in words. Immense loss. This city/town was something I explored with my friend. We did everything together. Discovered some wonderful places together. Today my friend left. Packed all bags and took a plane out. This city is suddenly not the same. There is nothing left here anymore. I just understood that it’s the people that make a city. Not the place. I don’t know what to do here anymore. Nothing is the same. Looks like all the interest has been rudely stripped off. I will come here again. But what will I do with myself? All the nice places we shared will be rudely bereft of the warmth or the niceness. Its like cutting off the umbilical chord. Bombay also is going to seem alien for a bit. Then over a few days things will be as usual. The same rut. The sameness will sooth. Till I think again. Think of what I am doing with myself. And for what. There must be anorther way to live this life.

Its strange that I never want something that I have strongly desired for once its attainable. Suddenly it loses all worth. Was dying to buy this one leather bag to hold my papers. Hidesign.suddenly I can afford it. And I so don’t want it anymore. At all. After lusting for it for three years. Now I want an LV, no less. Way out of my league. Its not so much the greed for more money. Its about disinterest. Its scary. I want to give it all up. Go to auroville. It wont affect anyone. I know that. If anyone could die of sadness...then fall aristera!

Saturday, December 10, 2005


New year resolutions

My last years sole resolution fell flat on its face (and how). I cant even manage one resolution? But then it wasn’t easy. Resolution to “be happy”. Muhahahaha. Like I love saying again and again…hazaaron khwaishey aise ke har khwaish pe dum nikley. But this year its gona be simpler.

Here’s my list:

1. go see ankorwat
2. buy a car
3. read books on my list of must reads
4. get my works published on cover page
5. learn to salsa
6. drive down somewhere far in the rains
7. have a threesome
8. go for the abida parween concert at humayun’s tomb
9. get rid of my cold
10. be happy

I think I should be able to manage a 9 on 10. what say?

Friday, December 09, 2005


abida parween

some things are magic things. a friend introduced me to abida parween's music. am so hooked. the nazms, thumris, dohas, baits...all sublime to say the list. they beat haikus anyday.

one of the best dohas goes:

"kaaga sab tan khaiyo, chun chun khaiyo maas
do naina mat khaiyo, inhe piya milan ki aas"

crow, eat my entire body, pick all the meat
just let two eyes be, they still await the beloved.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005


blackbird thunder and some

for some strange reason (and an ulterior motive) i went to prithvi theatre for this rehaan engineer directed play, "blackbird thunder". in one word, the play was -BEAUTIFUL. visually as well as content and perfomance. after over a year i saw a good play. very tech savvy for an indian production. brilliant choreography. ran into an aquantance and two friends. had irish coffee after the play, so prithvi. it was slightly nippy, i was happy. more than being happy fr it being a good play, i was happier that after a long time, the cynic in me was pushed behind and i actually liked as well as enjoyed something. no, its a new experience. my art critic friend said it was great but a little indulgent in parts. i agree but think its fine. the choreographer and one of the main performers was with us at the table...he agreed too. its evenings like this i think that make an otherwise bitch of a life worth it.

Monday, December 05, 2005


Lost in translation

B-O-R-I-N-G. much ado about nothing. Copolla? Blah! The story of the film? The two protagonists are bored/lonely. Then? Oh, that’s all. They are bored. They are lonely. Bored. Lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored lonely. Bored. lonely. Bored lonely.... Bonely lored.

Thursday, December 01, 2005


The week that was

Went for dinner at lemon grass (still my favorite) with a dear friend. They have painted off the nice blue wall into a harmless white. It was much nicer before. But the food is as good. Simply loooove the place. We talked a lot. About all sorts of things. Work. Life. Love (or the absence of it). Family. Its amazing how much fun it was. Catharsis, perhaps. Enjoyed myself immensely.
These days I brood over the fact that I am self employes and work from home. Today, met up my bumchum for lunch at jaihind (awesome food but they have made the place all swanky…was nicer in its dowdy avtaar). Then we went to his office bldg restaurant. The place was packed with so much energy. All these 20 somethings to 30 somethings. I miss that kind of action. Too much decision making, too much of responsibility, cant call in sick to myself. Blahblahblah. But I also know that I will never be able to work under someone again. The independence, creative satisfaction and sheer level of power and resposibility can give you a high too. Too much happening too fast though. The socialist in me cringes.
Have patched up with the bumchum who I had blatantly pelted with abuse in the previous posts. Thank god, didn’t want to lose this friend.
A few weeks back patched up with anorther very old friend. Soulmate rather. When we talk, there is no guard. Its so much of comfort to be able to talk this way to someone.

A list of people who I depend upon immensely now (in no particular order):

1. the french geebaby.
2. my old school pal, my sole link to the other (wink) world.
3. the buddy with whom I do a lot of gupshup
4. my megalomaniac, life is never boring with him
5. my soulmate
6. my mad cousin

currently reading :
1. Because I Have a Voice, queer politics in india.
Review: very interesting, an eye opener.

2. Lifting the Veil, Ismat Chugatai
Review: nice, avant garde, but the english translation leaves lots to be desired.


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