aristera says

Thursday, March 30, 2006


yeh manzilein hain kaunsee, na tum samajh sakay...

casanova. a nice film. fluff at its best. some witty dialogues. decadent venitian life at its best. the theatrics. the drama. the naivete. heard the word 'debauchery' after ages. killed me. and am going to call people 'simpletons' from now on *gleeful chuckle*. been a good day. days are good these days. missed my swim, though. hopefully tomorrow i should be able to, even though its a mad mad mad day. final juries. at last. cant wait to get em outa the way. i hate casablanca. tomorrow i have a power lunch. sounds funny even to my own ears. so not me. will probably be too absorbed in the food to bother with work. hehe.
didnt know more people read my blog. apparently a lot of them do. made me wonder why. is it a voyeur in them? it is like a soap? or what? have no clue. atleast other blogs talk of random subjects. i stick to what i eat, where i go or what i dont eat.
have promised myself to start studying full fledged from april 1. i better. though i dont know where to start. also, have abruptly cut off some people fom my life. some intentionally, some not intentionally. have become immensely intolerant. but i cant help it. dont have the energy to make things work if they dont. even a close friend, who probably read my blog. some not so close friends. can think of atleast 5 people i have almost cut off completely.
making some new friends. mostly from the field. but its great fun. sensible intelligent people. some not from the field. moving on, in some ways. but some old friends i jut need. have grown rather close to/ gotten used to/ need A,A,B,G at a primary level. some other close friends who come close to the next level.
the more i think, the more i am convinced that you fall in love but once. should not think too much. am being a big hypocrite these days. i am getting freaked out by the behaviour of a certain someone who is behaving exactly as i would in the same situation. not done, not done.
some comprmises one doesnt make. at all.
nostalgic about college. about sunder. the painfully simple times below a jamun tree. hours spent hating every architect's work in the world. details. the works. we could actually sit for 6 hours and yap. *sigh*
current colour : eggshell white

Wednesday, March 29, 2006


thats me in the corner

wondering if a print (of an original work of art) is more slick, more saturated and colour 'corrected' and refined, then why is it not equated (let alone preffered) to the original. the prints of ravi verma's works look much more appealing than the originals. i recall the visit to the baroda palace (it houses one of the largest collections of his work) to see 'the' raja ravi verma's and was a little disappointed. the prints are richer, for sure. with the art market booming, a new phenomenon is also coming in vogue. the print market, i feel, is about to errupt anytime now.
early to bed and all works well for me. have been almost successful with my healthy food spree. hope it lasts. been swimming religiously. increased it by a lap. *yay* and feel good about it. though it does tire me a bit. but its good. havent been reading at all. but thats ok. need to start studying now. exams fast approaching .*yawns* went shopping yesterday and today (relax readers, am not depressed, just felt like) *chuckles*
havent been to the shack in a long time. want to. lets see. maybe this week. with M. or would like to go to a nice bar with her. dying to go to Zenzi. havent gone anywhere in sometime.
had to kill some hours yesterday in the afternoon and a friend was closeby. it was a good oppurtunity to catch up. had a great lunch at the tea centre. love the place. nice fish in white wine sauce and rice with a side order of salad and fries (only 4 wedges, readers!) and a tall glass of iced tea. mango cheese cake (so i swim na!) *gets irritated*
K called and offereda nice teaching position. very prestigious. am thrilled beyond words. need to fix things on monday. *yay*
want to take a short break, even two days is good. do nothing. just laze around. maybe the next weekend. either the commune in poona or alibaug. dont know. or matheran? nobody seems to want to come with me though. *sigh*

Monday, March 27, 2006


kisi nazar ko tera ...

a lazy lazy sunday. woke up late. went out for a film. Being Cyrus. hate as i might that Saif Ali Khan, the film was very good. and if one considers the fact that its Homi Adajania's directorial debut, then its fabulous. slick, well paced and taut. noir and just the right humour. i found the narrative of the protagonist extremely real and identifiable. its almost the way i would speak. what didnt work for me was Saif's accent going terribly yuppie in english (considering his socio-economic background in the film, it was a tad unbelievable) and his bawa accent sucks big time. and some scenes where dimple tries too hard. Naseer is beyond criticism. subtle and contolled. Simone Singh is rather good too. Boman is kind of ok. am not to fond of him to be unbiased. the dream sequence was some forced surrealism (my friend's's words, not mine) but it didnt bother me one bit. some fine dialogues. and all in all a NICE film.
a rather uneventful monday lined up. none of the meetings i planned to fix worked out so am essentially going to sit on the laptop and fool myself that i am doing some work. hehe.

Sunday, March 26, 2006


ek raah toh woh hogi, tum tak jo pahuchtee hai...

so its time to reinvent (no no, not a makeover or a wardrobe revamp!). but to re-think things. to take on newer challenges. if things are too much under-control, i need to redefine the challenges or take on newer challenges. setting new targets and goals. a change in the set-up. a complete over-haul (dont know if thats the right word, but am sure my literary snob readers will do the needful to correct me at the drop of a hat).
lots of angst. lots of sadness. somethings i can attribute it to, some i cant. the ones i can, i can deal with. its the others that bother me. in a room full of people i feel lost. two friends asked me yesterday (while partying away to glory in a club overfilled with about 500 people) why i looked so lost. i just smiled. i didnt know i was so easy to read. but i didnt want to pretend to be interested, because i wasnt. life is too short to do things you dont enjoy. met so many people i didnt know what to say to. old flames. so many in one room. fuck buddies? or fuck you buddies.
drifting away from a friend. someone who is sweet, but somehow i cant relate to much. and rather than get irritated and snap, i just keep my distance. dont know if its a good idea. but thats my way of dealing with it.
making some new friends. want to do something refreshing. dont want to vegetate away. have accepted my limitations and kno i am not particularly intelligent, but want to make the most of everything in my own capacity. am starting today. but have already taken baby steps towards it. started swimming. eat healthy (no, i dont starve, eat a wee bit less than the over-indulgent me does and allow myself only small treats once in a while). the hedonism needs to take a back-seat. i see it happening with most of my friends. this indulgence is too decadent. the small joys are lost. if you can call and order in desserts all the time, it takes away from the joy of havng the ritual token pastry every sunday.
how many times do you fall in love in one lifetime? once? i dont know. i hope its more than once. coz i have crossed my mark 1. the others were not of much essence. they were relationships one learns from, grows with and out of. but love? one down.
going to spend some time and take on a research project that i had put at the back of my mind. it made me sad that i had to think hard yesterday to identify if i had a larger goal in life. and i was shocked. i did, but had forgotten all about it for hte longest time. when i remembered it, it made me feel so much better. someday. many years from now. and it will be the best, ever. it has to.
had a very interesting lecture on 'MODERNISM'. Abhay Sardesai. the editor of Art India. a different perspective on Modernity. it is one of my favorite areas. to question what is truly modern. a very interesting observation ...this sanitary napkin advertisement some years ago shows a mother packing the trousseau for her daughter. very serious deadpan expression on her face as she tucks in some sanitary pads into the suitcase. looks at her daughter and says with immense pride 'unhe bhi toh pata chaley...hum bhi kitney modern hai'. i mean, OH-MY-GOD. like what? huh? some benchmark for modernity, i say.
want to go buy the audio cds of Ijaazat and Aandhi. i keep singing mera kuch saamaan all day long. want to go catch a few films this week. might go for one today... i need to get hooked up. this being single business is soooo getting to me.

Friday, March 24, 2006


khaali haath shaam aayee hai...

what if i am not clever? what if i dont look good? what if i am not a nice person? what if i hate people i am supposed to love? what if i am mean? what if i am rude? what if i cant spell? what if i wish bad things should happen to some people? what if i am ruthless? what if i can not do anything right?
i think i should give up trying so hard.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006


tumse milna purani dilli mein...

Kisi ka kya jo kadamo par
Jabene par bandagee rakh dee
Humari cheez thi
Humne jahan jaane wahan rakh dee

Jo dil manga to
Woh bole,
Ki Thehro yaad karne do
Zara see cheez thi
Khuda jaane humne kahan rakh dee

Marney ke baad bhi
Aankhen khulee raheen
Aadat padee thi
Inhey intezaar ki

Been sleeping early for the past three weeks. Consistently. Waking up kind of early too. Working, reading, eating, walking. Feel good in a way. Feel old too. No clubs, no bars. Eating out a little less too. Is it a phase? Am at peace with myself because am at a point where I am most comfortable being me. The earlier angst of trying to be as expected is no longer there. There is a comforting surety about myself. In every which way. Am becoming a minimalist in some ways (wooohooo…scary) which was hitherto considered way-out-of-question. Might take on a new project which will be a departure from all my previous work. And have decided to make the process fun too. Will have to take a boat to work. Am kicked as hell about it. Sometimes I do act like a little kid. But then am not that old also na? fickle minded me. Futile ambitions are gaining less importance. Some things which are not under ones control are best left alone. It is only wise to not let oneself be affected by them. Am learning. Someone who used to be a friend returned a book which was borrowed and some thing which was gifted. *sigh* but I let it be at that. Didn’t have the energy or inclination to ask questions. Best left alone. Somethings are not meant to be. Another semi-friend has come back to Bombay from thbe city where this above-mentioned ‘use-to-be-a-friend’ is going. The capital. Dilli. A city I love. Please don’t die of a heart attack. I am probably the only Bombayite who loves Dilli. I mean, its not Bombay and can never be, but some bits of delhi are so so beautiful. The hauz khas village which could have been home (but that was another lifetime). A little barsati/ studio overlooking the ruins. The NSD and the purana kila and the crafts museum, chanakya, and shapurjat. *sighs*

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


aadhay geelay aadhe sukhay...

sometimes when you are smiling and there is a bounce in your step, life comes up to you and give you a tight, very tight slap in the face. it hurts. that is exactly what happened yesterday. i learnt anorther lesson. and am trying to not let it affect me. even though it shook me up real bad initially. am sitting here on my desk, early in the morning, looking at the people walk in the park, the mangroves and the beautiful painting on my desk titled ' Apologies Should be made in First Person'.
started reading 'Swimming in the Monsoon Sea'. i feel that way right now. sri lanka of the monsoon sea and the monsoon skies and a monsoon dream. *slap*

Sunday, March 19, 2006


aaj kal paav zameen par

early to bed on a saturday night. 10pm. early to rise (early for a sunday). was up at 8am. 10 longs hours of sleep. had a smile on my face. rested. what a bright sunny day! i exclaimed as i drew the curtains and looked at the regulars in the park. walking, exercising and laughing. i called a friend up at 10am who had just woken up. andi yelled into my celfone what a bright sunny day! he wasnt amused. *chuckles with delight*
some coffee accompanied by reading the tabloids while abida sang away the morning. on am impulse i put my jeans on (white i still had my crumpled night tee on) and went to a bookstore. bought me two books i meant to read. one of them being Selvadurai's latest 'Swimming in the Monsoon Sea'. i was in sri lanka last monsoon. fond memories. *sigh*
had a healthy breakfast of brown bread sandwich and veggies (sans mayo or butter) and a glass full of fresh carrot juice and sneaked in a fig too. *sly grin*
went to meet my granny. chatted for a bit and came home to shower. had a controlled lunch of 3 parathas (cant eat less than that now, please!) and some veggies. sneaked in a little steamed rice (its sunday after all) and butter-milk with mint and cucumber chunks (its summer after all) and one little pyramidal piece of toblerone (i am human after all). read the nouvella Brokeback Mountain and napped. now out to high tea at prithvi's with two literary snobs. i think i just shut up and think things while they talk books. *rolls eyes*
then for an early early dinner with someone *smiles beatifically* at this small little shack near the sea while serves the meanest pizza and good lasagne. then come home and study a little? may be. *wicked grin* need to finish the nouvella. need to sit with my accounts. year ending fast approaching. *sighs*

Friday, March 17, 2006


Cotton 56 polyester 84

peaceful days. No, the work load is the same. But somehow am at peace with myself. Counting my blessings. Doing the things I like to do. Only with people I want to do them with. Had a nice mallu fish lunch with a friend with whom I hardly spend anytime with. hirava maach. daItalicl. fried bangda, rotis. at night, a play at prithvi. with someone else (ambiguous on purpose) *chuckles*. Cotton 56 Polyester 84. Borrows heavily from the vernacular idiom. Song and dance idiom of the marathas. the play is crafted well and based on a theme i am very interested in. mill lands. well paced and noir. grabbed a bite post-dinner. close by. then walked in the by-lanes of juhu. late. have an early morning today. class and then back to back meeetings all day. tiring. but is there any other way? *smiles beatifically*. not cynical about anything. confused about some. but that is only 'normal'. becoming a bit of a homebody too. need to study. have been procrastinating it for a while. but work back log is now under control. the organising on holi helped. delegating work more sensibly helped. want to try and be in this peaceful, relaxed, semi-happy mood. serene. a pic i took on a holiday last year depicts my current mood.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


titli aar weekend

rituparno's earlier film, 'Titli'. ridiculously pot-boiler in concept and story-line. only thing that makes you watch is the mother-daughter duo played by Aparna Sen and Konkona. lots of regressive cinematography. the usual bong syndrome of ' when in doubt, trot Tagore out'... but it does have its moments. the bits where the daughter insinuates infidelity on her mother...and the mother hints that perhaps she (the daughter) is the reason she never forgot her first love. she didnt let her. putting up his posters, playing his songs and seeing his films all day long. the quesy situation where the mother and daughter have loved the same man without one of them knowing it. a lot of subtle nuances dealt with rather well. and ofcourse Aparna is a treat to watch.
a good weekened. this is how weekends should be. with people you want to be with. no work. eat out a lot. shop a lot. read a bit. watch films. think. trekked. all over pali hill *breathless*.
saw Brokeback Mountain on a dvd last night. it IS a film which grows on you. i like it, a lot.
holi. colours. it has to be gulal. only gulal. and lotsa food. nice pakoras and water and friends and bonhomie. cobalt and umber and ultramarine, aubergine, burgundy, sienna and wine. no. its positively a burnt pink. the colour of gulal. i love the word 'gulal'.
work backlog. dont know what to do with it. procrastinated long enough. maybe tonite.
need to go shop some. lots actually.

Sunday, March 12, 2006


of bhadralok, melancholic whores and phool babu

raja ravi verma and 'desantification'
it is fascinating to see where ravi verma generates his iconography. the imagery that has tricled down to the indian bourgeoise today. the models who posed for him for his religious paintings in the late 19th century were parsi theatre actresses (of little repute) and whores. so it really boils down to the fact that the religious icons painted by him are quintessentially that of whores. the shakutala series, the sita, etc. purists, go take a jump!
in her brilliant essays 'When was Modernism', Dr.Geeta Kapur propounds various theories which hint at a larger purpose to his work. the civilization project (not always a humanist manifesto) is worked on by ravi verma and is a prime example of the role of an 'aesthete' in the nationalist realm too. his depictions of ideal beauty, of idealic settings (albeit borrowed heavily from pastoral oils of european masters) and ethnographs - all play a very important role in the socio-political scheme of the late 19th century. truly modern.
my favorite new word: Bhadralok (for exampple: that is sooo bhodro. implies: so decadent, so affected, so up market, so snooty, so vain).
Brookback Mountain: poignant, mature, dark, heart wrenching, over-hyped

Friday, March 10, 2006


gender of a blog

a strange thought occured to me the other day. do blogs have genders? is it as simple as - transfer the gender of the blogger to his/her blog? does a male blogger's blog also male? and a woman who blogs has a female blog? i wonder what the french consider a blog. since they assign gender (by some god-alone-knows logic) to inanimate things. so is it 'le blog' or 'la blog'. need them francophiles to the rescue.
Currently Sipping: freshly squeezed carrot juice (self imposed 'no-alcohol' spree)
Excited About: tomorrow

Thursday, March 09, 2006


love in the time of bird flu

a crazy crazy workday. couldnt even catch my breath. on my feet and on the move all over the city. but its the only way i like it. i crib and complain *beams angelically* but it still is the only way i like it. could never bring my self to admit it, but i am a worko-friggin-holic. woooooh! there! i finally said it out loud. feels so much better.
last meeting was a huge waste of time. luckily it was over dinner, so anyways it would have been time spent just chomping. clients insisted on feeding me. chole poori. i hate chole and detest poori. poori is the lowest form of food for me. deep fried flour? help!
was so dead after the meeting, i needed to unwind. called a friend and met up for some nice hot earl grey. the warden road barista is charming. unlike its other counterparts in the city. the old architectural context is retained. reminds me of that most beautiful barista on MG rd in bangalore. a walk down warden road. late night. tacky SoBo gujjus hogging on the roadside. oh, SoBo for the uninitiated is South Bombay. might do a post on gujjus one of these days. pointed out my old house to my friend. was reminescing how i went to benzer every single day and got me a toy. and then? then, i grew up.
stopped at haji ali, the beautiful beautiful dargah (shame on bombayites who havent been inside...years ago my granny took me and a cousin there and thereafter for a nice sizzler at kobes and then bought me nice colourpencils) for strawberrys and cream. S-I-N. oooooooooooooooo. can not get over it.
the weekend seems to hold a lot of promises. but then thats two days away. leaving for poona right now, long long tiring day ahead. sigh. such a long journey. will study on the way in the bus.
realising slowly that i am growig up. really growing up. really fast. think am not doing too bad. kind of in love, with myself. ah, the hedonist. *laughs histerically*
currently reading : Abert Camus, Short Stories
Vidya Dehijia, Indian Art
playing in my head : Iss mode pe aate hain , Aandhi.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006


tabula rasa

too much too soon. a hectic trip pre-weekend. work completed. a crazy party which has left me embarrased and disgusted with myself. there is a thin line between accpetable and way-off. once again i cross. dealing with losses. to be there for a friend who needed me. i dont think i did a very good job. sometimes you dont know what to say. you cant tell someone "its ok, it will all be fine". sometimes its not ok. and you dont know what to say. all you do is be there for the person. i crashed the minute i took a shower and had my lunch. my body hurt. emotinally drained, physically drained.
need to get back into a routine. feel at odds. feel like painting. a train. anna karenina-esque. deep and melancholy. fine eye for details. hunger. need to paint more often. make a schedule.
will work tomorrow with a 'planned' approach. PERT charts et all. time to take control. literally and otherwise. things are strained with some people. it is sad. am also on a crazy 'cutting-down-number-of-friends' spree. cant handle the meaningless banter with so many people. it is taking a toll need some space too. i am trying hard to 'un-endumbment'. want to understand so much. cant waste time on people who dont matter. rather invest the time in something i enjoy, with people i want to be with.
going to the living room now, to watch a film. its hot here, in bombay. and its only the begining. i dont know what will happen next.

Thursday, March 02, 2006



Finn: I did it! I did it! I am a wild success! I sold 'em all, all my paintings. You don't have to be embarrassed by me anymore, I'm rich! Isn't that what you wanted, aren't we happy now. Don't you understand, that everything I do, I do it for you. Anything, that might be special in me, is you.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006


aristera - reader of stupa narratives

Writing while I eat a bowl of home made khaw souey (I cant even spell regular words, how do you even for a moment think I could spell this??). *rolls eyes*
Going for drinks to the shack. Long time I heard some good music. Indulgent month. Yesterday was dinner at lemon grass and pot pourri. Hehe. The former didn’t deliver the kinda food one wanted. So we moved onto pourri. It wasn’t a food night. But the film afterwards made up for it. ‘Crash’. Awesome. Layers. Questions everything. Contemporary America. What is stands for (if it stands for anything at all). Yes, I have double standards. I am a closeted socialist. Who enjoys the good life. Its bizarre. I don’t know. *chomps on more khaw souey and ponders*
So well. A friend is visiting over holi weekend. A excited. I was to visit geets (of the geebaby fame) next weekend. But it got cancelled. Indefinitely postponed. Am going out of town for 2 days on work. Taking a long holiday next month.
Work is going to get hectic soon. I can hear the thunder. *shudders*
Need more time. Have to see so many films this month. Memoirs of a Geisha (for the visuals , Capote (for the adaptation), Brokeback (for the senti quotient) and some others too.
Have been studying for exams in april. Going up the wall. Read out a typical question from the syllabus to some of my friends. They just laughed their heads off.
Discuss the idea of kingship as understood from the DharmaShastra literature and how it has shaped our ideas regarding the Home of God as a Palace and Cosmos.
Decided to tackle this one later. Started with a much easier option…
Explain the role of linear and synoptic Buddhist narratives at Amaravati and Sanchi.
A new friend (when he got to know what I was studying) called my a ‘reader of stupa narratives’. Sweet.

Currently Reading: Calvin and Hobbes
Listening to: Abida Parwin
Playing in my head: My Blue Suede Shoes (Elvis)


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