aristera says

Tuesday, February 28, 2006


once again

Once again
The rain

Through my skin,

Into my soul,

The texture of
My life

Deepti Naval

Sunday, February 26, 2006


pride and prejudice

so i turned 25. so what! i shall age gracefully.
had a good birthday.
loved my gifts.
some more to come!
here's the list i have so far:
1. dvd player
2. hidesign wallet
3. Lolita
4. B'fast at Tiffany's
5. Calvin and Hobbes
6. 2 beautiful fabindia mugs (of which i already broke one...symbolic or symbolic)
7. Feluda (Satyajit Rays short stories)
8. Infinite Riches
10. 3 books from the penguin special
11. 3 dvds (one hollywood, one mexican film and one spanish)
12. chocolates...after eight
12. some more to come my way.
dinner was fish and bloody mary's. c'est la vie. la vie.
saw pride and prejudice today. kiera knightly and matthew mcfaden. knightly adds anorther dimension to Elizabeth Bennet. Mcfadden takes time to warm upto. once you get the fact that he is indeed Darcy, he is a treat to watch. but the film is a must see for the Tudor architecture and Knightly. After the BBC version, i think this one also does it full justice. though the literary snob i went with, begs to differ.
i also love the title. Pride and Prejudice. my two big problems (amongst a plethora of others).
a friend wrote me a rather beautiful poem (pronounced 'pome' as in like dome or rome). here goes:
i know its really your birthday again,
one time.
all too human. and hopeful.
what is this fluidity you move through?
you are a pisces afterall.
always so many hungers.
and you walk on water for one night.
the beautiful margarita spinning.
your picasso stance.
how you liked winners and dispised losers.

Saturday, February 25, 2006


25 on 25

birthday. birthday. time flies and all that. while i munched on grapes and after eight chocolates, and watched an extremely aesthetically sound film 'Bad Education' (a birthday present from a dear dear friend), the door bell rings. i roll my eyes. hoping its not any unpleasant relation. then think it must be a flowers delivery. much too my suprise, its guppie and r. armed with a cake! i am beyond happy. a little embarassed. after a long work day and the next day being working for one of them... am very embarrased. but alls well that begins well. got a call from two of my oldest friends (poona and paris). still waiting for the third school friend to call (delhi). am sure she will. waiting for my college roomie to call. am other buddy was sloshed on cheap wine (at the press club) so i guess its better he didnt call at night and talk nonsense (not that he talks any sense when sober). kidding! my madcap friend put an alarm to call me (time zones can be a pain, na?) at night and also in the morning! the silly kid called too. put an alarm, was barely awake, wished me a drowsy birthday! haha. parents, cousins, friends parents. am very touched. need to go meet my nani. have my morning cuppa coffee with her. go to the mandir (a ritual i stick to) and then head to class. usual day.
feel all grown up. really. life coming a full circle. first birthday once i started living on my own. oh, my associate got me a ru and raisin cake, baked by an old lady in chembur. she knew i like such offbeat things. hehe. but reminded my of 36 chowringee lane. will post my gifts list at night! woohoo.
and i so cant resist this quote, which i know a lot of people will roll their eyes at and go, "aristera, grow up!", but the peter pan in me at some levels refuses to.
the secret of life is never to have an emotion that is unbecoming. - Wilde
February 25: National Day in Kuwait (1950)

1570 - Pope Pius V issued the papal bull Regnans in Excelsis to excommunicate Queen Elizabeth I and her followers in the Church of England.
1836 - Samuel Colt received a patent for a "revolving gun."
1921 - The Democratic Republic of Georgia was occupied by the Soviet Red Army.
1951 - The first Pan American Games opened in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
1986 - EDSA Revolution: Corazón Aquino was inaugurated as President of the Philippines, as Ferdinand Marcos fled the nation after 20 years of rule.
aristera was born.

Friday, February 24, 2006



i have no clue why i post this. that too at past 2 in the morning. but i must. just.
my fridge consists of the following:
1. mayonaisse
2. brown bread
3. cheese
4. strawberries
5. grapes
6. pasta
7. carton of milk
8. toblerone (lotsa)
9. after eight (gift)
10. guava cheese (remains of a holiday in goa)
and there isnt anything else in my fridge besides these 10 items. hahaha. you know why i am writing this? to prove a point. never, ever, ever believe me if i say that i am happy being single. ever.

Thursday, February 23, 2006


cold women. a date. birthday

all's well.
feel good. no fever or fatigue.
just a cold lingers.
am taking it easy, work wise.
not burnt out. am happy.
dvd player working. got a fresh replacement.
the water purifier was fine. i didnt know how to turn it on (deja-vu, anyone?)
watched 'Blanc' or 'White' (if you must) from the colour trilogy. loved it.
Dominique (played by Julie Delpy) is cold. why does he still love her? i am fascinated by cold women who are loved. Estella (played by Gwenyth Paltrov) in Great Expaectations is cold and hurts Finnigen Bell (Ethan Hawke) each time he is extremely happy about something. it kills me. and is she HOT or is she HOT? Dominique of 'Fountainhead' (that trashy novel by Ayn Rand) also falls into the same category.
went for drinks at zenzi last night (for sure my favorite bar). i dont know if it was a date. but had a fabulous fabulous time. had to politely sip on white wine (the recent bout of flu, you see). while my friend/date merrily guzzled 3 very tempting capriojkas (to hell with how it is spelt... i love it for the mint. but i still swear by my bloddy marry's and martinis and appletinis). date/friend wore something from Anokhi. brownie points! talked about everything under the sun. drinks, college, zenzi, architecture, bombay, urban planning, human rights, sex, friends, clubs, traffic, books, films, life. lookng forward to an encore. amen.
my birthday on saturday! wooohooo. 25 on 25.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006


yahhan wahaan ki baatien and some

16 hours of non-stop work. The length-breadth-height of the city was covered. 9am meeting on site in lokhandwala, out in the sun in marve (way outside the city) with clients till 1:30pm. Move to khar for another meeting till 4:30pm. Power lunch (read irritated me answering inane questions of dumb clients, while all I wana do is eat…its f***ing 5pm! And I am having my lunch). Rush hour traffic is me to reach pedder road. More inane stuff awaits me when I get there at 6:55pm. Leave for colaba for some more work till 9pm. Rush hour in the train to get back home. Get home at 10:15pm and want to cry. Still more calls to attend to (its Friday night!!) and things to be dealt with. Am done only by 1am.
Rush to colaba on work at 9:30am. Meeting at 11am. Get done by 12:45 and rush to class. Interesting class on ‘cities as objects of art’. Lecture by a friend so it wasn’t one of those rigid-rigid ‘lectures’. Finish by 4pm. Rush to check out an opening and a show. Hacienda was opening Kim Kyoungae’s solo ‘Beyond Horizon’. Beautiful gallery. Prosaic, unimaginative show. Kim has done better work before. Spoke to the gallerist and the curator. Rushed to Chemould to catch Vivan Sundaram’s show. Am not a big admirer of his works. But loved this show. ‘Bad Drawings For Dost’-Vivan Sundaram. A homage to Bhupen Khakhar. Subtle and crude at the same time. Unserstated and hard-hitting. Grotesque and vulnerable. All whites. Charcoal, graphite on gateway. Tactile works.
Running a fever. Have three bowls of soup (a a small piece of chocolate).
Nursing a cold, sore throat and fever. Taking it easy. Love the fact that I am not working. A friend drops by to see how I am doing. We have a good chat. She wants to talk about architecture. Don’t get me started girl! Cousins come to visit. Hate them. Their kid sings emran hashmi songs. Dances to them. And they encourage him. Are proud of it. I want to kill them. What is the world coming to. Ask him about enid blyton, and he may say that she is some ‘chick’ that emran is doing in some flick. *aristera weeps silently*
Cousin1 comes visitng too. Love her. She is silent. She cant stand the others either. I want to speak to her about something. Soon.
Worked only for 2 hours. Felt guilty. Made work calls for an hour. Felt better. Hehe. Never thought in college that I would turn out to be a workaholic. Wow. Me, the lazy lump of corruption. Went and bought me a dvd player. Was very excited. Gonna watch loadsa films. Geets, here I come! But the f***ing player isn’t working. Want to kill someone. Hate life. The water purifier also not working. So no water. Is this an indication? I wonder.
Wake up early. Got to take a class in a bit. Don’t know why I am still blogging. Going to be late. But today, class should be fun. Models and spatial play. Lets see how I goes. Lending my copy of ‘In Which Annie Gives It Those Ones’ (the screenplay and the vcds) to my students. And want to discuss the Jewish Museum at Berlin for case study of implicit conceptualization. Had forced geets to go see it when she was in berlin. Am glad she listened…I think she is also glad that she did. Love the building. Genocide and voids. The building is about silence. Daniel libeskind. One of the better architects. Geets inscribed something very sweet on the book she got me from the museum. Just read it yesterday…after a long time.
“dear ******, it’s a building dedicated to silence – so I thought it fitting to say that words cant express how precious our friendship is…hope you enjoy the book. Love always, geetanjali.S”.
Currently reading: Pablo Neruda Selected Poems
Re-reading: The Language of Post Modern Architecture, Charles Jencks
Listening to: nothing
Playing in my head: It’s a Wonderful World

Sunday, February 19, 2006

How Many Hands Do I Need to Declare My Love for You

Friday, February 17, 2006

10 things I wish I wasn’t:
1. out of shape
2. insecure
3. suffering from low self-esteem
4. a procrastinator
5. arrogant and sarcastic (as a defense mechanism)
6. bad at spellings
7. single
8. so blind when in love
9. sooo not-well-read
10. fickle minded (and how!)
10 things I wish I was:
1. all toned and muscle
2. intelligent
3. to the manor born
4. aware of the world affairs
5. selfless
6. simple
7. older
8. confident and self-assured
9. more skilled (to play an instrument or dance or something)
10. someone else, some place else.
Currently playing in my head: ‘mera kuch samaan tumhare paas pada hai’.
I relate to this song at any point every point.
Catharsis: saw an ex on a date. An ex I am so over. The ex was out with this famous guy. A semi-celeb of sorts. It irritated me. A lot. Disgusted me even. None of my business. True. But I did find it very irksome. Just had to put it down on the blog. Or I’d be playing it in my head all the time. be right back. *aristera goes to the washroom, throws up*. aah am back!


stand up stand up

no, this is not about eminem's slim shady (btw, i abhor eminen, ughs ughs ughs... it is not, to each his own wont work here. eminem is not music). stand up comedy. bombay does not have much of that. am a sucker for most live performances. this one was N-E-A-T. vidur kapur. new york based stand-up comedian. at zenzi... one of my favorite bars. nice drinks, nice bar, good music, good crowd. and they dont hate stags! woo hoo. some wine, some beer and good jokes. some self-deprecatory and some not. george bush bashing to indian bashing to gay bashing. it was a riot. funny funny funny.
was with a bunch of friends. people think we are snobs. perhaps. i dont know.
the usual gang. and it means a great level of comfort for me. they know me and i know them. we know when and how to give/ get space. and there is a level of informal jibes and all. it is really about the comfort zone. people dont approach us, or mix around because we are rather self-contained. strange, but true.
met some people i hadnt in a long time. got all flattered when someone hit on me. woo hoo. been sooooo long. was wondering where i go wrong. hehe.
am chuckling wickedly.
got an early morning tommorrow.
met an aquaintance at zeni who asked me if i teach. kinda freaked me out, coz i wondered how he knew, as i hadnt told him. he said he reads my blog. it kinda baffles me. i thought only 5 women read my blog. apparently not. annonymous people who do not comment also read this. didnt know they did.
we need more of stand-up comic acts in bomaby!
need a break from the usual clubbing.
and am so glad am in bombay. elasewhere in india, there isnt a half decent bar (delhi and blore being the exceptions)... i can just not survive in small town india. was away from bombay for 5 loooooong years. never again. would love to travel the world. even the usual suspects like london and new york, but bombay was, is and shall always be home.
damn, i wish i had had that martini. oh i dont think will want to wake up early tomorrow morning. but i have to. for my bread and foi gras. c'est la vie. sigh.
currently reading : Norwegian Wood by Murakami
Madhubani Paintings by Mulk Raj Anand
currently listening to : Abida Parwin
song in my head : whats going on by 4 non-blondes
i say, "hey! whats going on!!?"

Wednesday, February 15, 2006


semantics, semeotics, tactility of language, et cetera

a friend insists on speaking 'correct' and 'global' english. what the hell is global english? for me it is a castrated language. no coloquil nuances or tactility. i personally think a language needs to grow over place and time. it is regressive otherwise. new words are added to the dictionary. we have our own quirks in terms of pronunciations and sentence construction too. our cultural background renders it thus. why mst i speak like the british do? english as indian a language as any vernacular language. i wonder if the other erstwhile colonies face the same problem.
take the word 'peon' for example. since i cant write phoenetics...kindly make do with this...
pyune ( as in like puke) is how we would say it here.
the americans go different, while the brits hail the 'pee-un'. does that make indian way of saying it wrong? we need to deconstruct this prosaic heirarchy where the British ways are a higher factor of the equation. we are no longer colonized. it is sad, because, if the french have their way of prnouncing english words, its hip. its sexy. its the pride they take in doing things their way. but if there is any mother-tongue-infiltration in india, we term the poor person a 'verni'. i wonder why we have such a low self-esteem as a nation.
i take much pride in the fact that i am multilinguistic. i speak english, hindi, marathi and gujarati rather fluently. i understand bengali, punjabi and a little bit of french. will someday take up a foreign language too. someday.
so the point being, its perfectly ok to have a heavy twang of any which sort. construct a sentence the way you think is best. purists have no place in the PostModern (PoMo) world.
a beautiful PoMo work which designs language is Roy's 'The God of Small Things'.
P.G.Woodhouse does that too. na?
what, ya!
like i love saying, 'fun hua!'

Sunday, February 12, 2006

A basic lack of tolerance. People still debating over valentine’s day. Whether it is corrupting the youth of our country? Why it should be banned? I could throw up. Really. Moral policing? In 2006? Give me a break. How can someone define what is right for me? What is wrong? Who decides what is acceptable? Who decides what is obscene? What is unnatural? Huh? Nonsense! Some silly old, frustrated, kinky jerks who think they know what Indian culture is? Can even one of them tell me about the history of the country? The heritage? Am sure they cant. They are blinkered. They should be shot dead. Each one of them. What if person A wants to buy person B flowers, chocolates, cards and take person B on a date? Huh? What is wrong with that? What is wrong if they kiss? Express their love? What part of our ‘culture’ is being compromised here? And god forbid if the person A and B happen to be of the same gender. Shudder shudder. Westrern corrupt values. Kill them? Send them to the West? That has been done at an indirect level anyways whereby queer people have migrated to other more tolerant countries. Gandhian principals of non-violence and tolerance? Are they alien to us? Is that not our ‘culture’? is it not a fundamental-human-right? Huh? You bash-up/ kill people who ‘love’ people who according to you should not be loved by them? If there are any prescriptions as to who should be loved and by whom, then please burn them. Or is there a genocide in the planning to exterminate all deviants? Huh?
Do we not have more pressing issues in our country? Female infanticide? Or forget such irrelevant (relatively) issues. How about basics like water? Food? Education? Dignity comes way below in the list. But we still harp about valentine’s day. D-I-S-G-U-ST-I-N-G.

Monday, February 06, 2006



I walked down the street
Felt someone was following me
It was refreshing.
Metaphorically, I think
No one follows me.

They all come
Take a piece of me
I wonder what happens
When very little of me
Is left?

I called for food
Last night.
They never send
Portions fit for one.
If I had someone to eat with
Wouldn’t I simply go out?

I saw a film the other day
It didn’t have an ending
Per se, that is.
It was more real to me
Than if it were with an ending.

I did the right thing.
After a long time,
Once again
I did something which
Was ‘right’
And once again
It made me sad.

I picked up my phone
And we spoke.
I had the upper hand
I was being ‘honest’.
Sometimes it does not
Take guts to be ‘honest.
Sometimes its easy
Only sometimes
Its difficult to lie to others.
I can fool myself, sometimes
At other times
I fool nobody.

Sunday, February 05, 2006


The Left Side of my Left Foot

The other day
When I was going for a walk
Out in the wilderness

A huge sky fell on my toe

A heartless, shiftless
Sheer abundance!

I struggled to move it
Pushed hard as I could
Jostled with it
But nothing worked

Till a soft wind blew
Moving it slightly
Releasing from underneath
My battered toe

I walk around as usual now
It’s just that… since that day

The left side of my left foot

Is a Cobalt blue.

deepti naval

Saturday, February 04, 2006


books my foot

ENTITY: i love literature
ME: oh, do you now?
ENTITY: ya, ya.i read an awesome book.
ME: awesome book?
ENTUTY: you must read it
ME: .....
ENTITY: its about art.
ME: thats nice....
ENTITY: ya, Da Vinci Code
ME: @#$%^**^*
ENTITY: but...
ME: shut up!
a friend and i were randomly surfing channel on one of my two televisions (i watch about 30 mins of it per month so its a bit funny to have two tellies...bizzare rented furnish appt, you see) last night and on NDTV there were interviewing Paolo Coehlo. and my friend got all excited about it. it ticked me off. cant stand it. i think the Alchemist was candy floss trash. reductionist, overtly simplified junk. 'Literature' for the Dimwit (LFD).
so i decided to make a list of books which are LFD...
1. The Alchemist
2. 5 Point Someone
3. Da Vinci Code
4. Harry Potter
5. Who Moved My Cheese
6. 7 Habits of Highly Successful People
7. One Night At The Call Centre

cant come up with more right now. but am sure there a tonnes more.
but it was heartning to see the mad crowds at The Strand Sale.
i went beserk and shopped beyong my means.
but no regrets.
have sworn to give 'A Clock Work Orange' a second chance.
Read 3 whole pages of Calcutta Chromosome. HATED IT.
i think he is immensely overrated.
gimme a Seth, any day.
on a not very different note, my birthday is around the corner. well not really around the corner, but 3 weeks is not too far, na?


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