Sunday Stealing! & life changes

I got a mail from Mr. Lance of Sunday Stealing…for this. Then got a pingback from Dayle Fraschilla who took up the meme here. 🙂 Thanks! 🙂
This reminded me of how it was taking memes. Making friends on this blog. Over time, my blogging frequency has come down. I don’t even remember what was the last meme I did. I do read most of my favourite blogs but don’t leave comments like I used to. Pity that I don’t even seem to rant as much or share anything… wondering why?!I am tempted to retake the same meme at least some of the questions, just to see if life has changed?! Nah!!! Life definitely has changed since this. Been two years!! I have changed jobs (I didn’t have one then!), A is 2 years older. I am 2 years older & wiser 😉 (ok…that I probably never will be). I guess I don’t trust people like I used to.( well still not too good at this yet! Needs more work). I also need to learn how to tell people exactly what to do to themselves when they comment on my life choices. I am always up for a debate but not ready to hear judgemental comments on anything which includes topics like who I spend time with, what I wear, how I must raise my kid, spend my money etc…
I have changed my mobile quite a few times since 😉 (yeah…I like gadgets, make the effort to save money to buy them so people who comment on this habit…here goes – my money, my wish). In fact I have also changed my car, dress sizes (up and down and up…). This is as far as material things go.
Oh how can I forget?!?! I am officially legally single. Ok…in Chennai I am a divorcee. I have a globally acceptable document that says this!!  Thanks to my divorce happening in NY, USA and me living here in India; trying to get a passport without the name of the spouse on it (yeah…you can get a person’s entire life story if possible from Indian passports), I had to learn what an Apostille document is. I had to even educate a few officers in the passport office here.
I thought I have come a long way when it comes to battling depression since Feb 2009. This was yesterday. Today I am not so sure. I have to be honest here, I still battle with thoughts of suicide, sending A to his father & just disappearing hoping to make people happier at least then. Crux is I don’t think I have won that battle or am I even close to it when it comes to depression 😦 Have my ups and downs…
As usual my thoughts are all over the place. Well I am living up to being the ruminator…I have to stop ruminating I suppose :D.
The tagging at least has given me an excuse to scribble here…
Here is to hoping that this year is better for me and those few readers I still have or any of those new ones who happen to accidentally find their way here (that is some optimism from some one like me who prides in being a pessimist in capital bold letters 🙂 )

Abuse – not just physical!

Indusladies International Women's Day Contest

Aarti & Ritu have tagged me on this contest by Indusladies.com.

The details of the contest can be read here.

I do not consider myself a pro at writing, never attempted fiction (don’t think I will! 🙂 ). So,  I decided to type in my thoughts on the abuse that women go through. Some of them every  single day of their life!

There are a number of forums/ laws (not enough some say…still) that deal with physical or  sexual abuse of women or girls. Immense media coverage is given on finding any such  instance that goes with proof.

I am not going to write about that. I do not discount the agony or pain felt by those women at all but I want to pen my thoughts on a different kind of abuse. Mental/Emotional abuse. This is not visible through bruises or scars. Outwardly, the female population that goes through this kind of abuse would appear fine. They even go about their day in a routine (happy?!?) fashion. So, I feel that this abuse is neglected. Mental abuse cannot be proven either; albeit it exists and is prevalent.

How many of us (though given the essentials and more) have heard the words – “you are a girl, you cannot do this!” or “Being a girl/woman, how could you……? ”  and many more such queries?!? Women/girls are not stopped from anything even, but it gets ingrained that certain tasks cannot be done by us women/girls! Some of us rebel (and are picked up on that!) but most of us women just shut up & never say a word. Take the brunt of it all silently. Slowly start believing that what is said is true. Worse, the same women even start advocating/perpetuating those false views!!!

There must be so many women all around who have boundaries drawn, boxes moulded around that they never must step out. It is blasphemy to think otherwise. The norms set by the so called society are to be followed. Even professionally successful women undergo quiet mental abuse. Once you are done with work, it is the duty of the woman to be home – cook, clean, tend to the home/kids. Friends – what friends? How can one have a life outside of the home? Slowly the woman who had a big circle of friends loses touch with them. The same circle grows smaller (other women undergoing the same problem or some who just give up reaching out all the time) and it slowly ends up being your home is your world! Is the woman happy about it? No! but she is bounded by constant words around her that this is what is expected of her. She changes as a person even! Is this abuse visible? No! People just see a woman taking care of her home & family. She appears happy. She might even have a successful career (as long as it does not interfere with the husband’s plans).

Words hurt way more than a bludgeon. The scars fade, black and blue bruises go away but the ill-spoken word lasts forever etched in memory. Slowly eating away the confidence, the person who the woman really is, getting “moulded” according to what is expected of her! Bouts of depression, anger haunt her though she cannot express them. If at all she does, it is labeled PMS or some such thing (oh her mood swings!! is quite a common phrase! ). In countries like India, mental health is not even a factor that is considered. Therapy is unheard of even in the educated sections of society. A visit to the psychiatrist or psychologist – will be hushed up like a murder has been committed. Eventually even those who attempt it, to avoid being ostracised end up stopping therapy. With not many takers, the quality of the therapists also for want of a better word – sucks!

Right from childhood, this kind of abuse starts. Who made all these rules? Who decides on what the boundaries are? Where do all those boxes come from?! Every single aspect of life is scrutinised. What a girl wears, who she speaks to, how she walks, what she studies, what she eats/drinks, how she must look – each and every minute thing!! It gets to them at some point or the other. Even the woman who would say that she has never undergone any kind of abuse, I am sure, would have been told what/how to do something at some point or the other. Some are oblivious even to this kind of abuse – blessed I must say. There are those who want to break free & just cannot. Many suffer in silence, just end up accepting this as a way of life even!

I don’t know if I have expressed what I want to. I am glad that many are ready to fight for their rights. I just wish that women do not just quietly accept anything and everything just to maintain peace at home. I wish they speak up. As long as one’s actions does not hurt anyone, nothing is wrong. It might not be what the society normally deems acceptable! One must be free to live life the way one wants to, express one’s ideas freely.

I must say that this can easily be a unisexual post in many ways. I feel it is more appropriate for women as these norms/rules and this kind of abuse is a lot more against them!

I am supposed to tag 3 other bloggers. So here goes, I tag

Read it here Laksh ;)

Laksh asked people to respond by commenting on her space or mailing her for this meme. Well, I thought I would post my answers here… 
1. When you looked at yourself in the mirror today, what was the first thing you thought?
       Dark circles!! will they ever go? I look old for what I am 🙂 yet not so bad 😉

2. How much cash do you have in your wallet right now?
       655 INR and some loose change

3. What’s a word that rhymes with DOOR?
       Bore? Floor? Gore? oh yeah!!! as the children’s song goes …four! 😉

4. Who is the 4th person on your missed call list on your cell phone?
        Anu

5. What is your favorite ring tone on your phone?
     Tabla beats (as of now!)

6. What are you wearing right now?
     Salwar Kameez

7. Do you label yourself?
     Yes – loser, good for nothing,…and the likes

8. Name the brand of the shoes you’re currently own?
     Metro

9. Bright or Dark Room?
      Dimly lit 😉

10. What do you think about the person who took this survey before you?
     Amazing friend! Lucky to have her in my life 🙂

11. What does your watch look like?
       Black leather strap, fairly big dial

12. What were you doing at midnight last night?
       Reading a book

13.What did your last text message you received on your cell say?
      You have made a debit card purchase of  Rs.     at   . Total avlb bal is INR……

14. What’s a word that you say a lot?
       Hi?

15. Who told you he/she loved you last?(please exclude spouse , family, children)
       no one (not even family !!)

16. Last furry thing you touched?
      My friend’s dog

17. Favourite age you have been so far?
      Don’t know! Yet to come!?! zero? cos would have been better if I remained that?!

18.  What was the last thing you said to someone?
       Good night 

19. The last song you listened to?
      Suicide is painless – M*A*S*H title song

20. Where did you live in 1987?
       Madras

21. Are you jealous of anyone?
      Sometimes everyone! Sometimes no one

22. Is anyone jealous of you?
       Nothing I have can make anyone jealous of me

23. Name three things that you have on you at all times?
      Cell phone, ear ring, smile( try to at least 😉 )

24. What’s your favourite town/city?
       New york city or Madras

25. When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper and mailed it?
        Don’t remember the year but to my parents from the US before 2004

26. Can you change the oil on a car?
       Yes

27. Your first love/big crush: what is the last thing you heard about him/her?
       No crush. Love – heard he is working in Atlanta, still single.

28. Does anything hurt on your body right now?
       Heart?! 😀

29. What is your current desktop picture?
        waves 

30. Have you been burnt by love?
        Anything worse than 3rd deg burns? 😉

 

Sorry….the answers when I read them now sound pretty morbid but they are the answers right now for this 🙂 Anyone who wants to take it, please do so. Either answer in comments/mail me or post 🙂 Just let me know  so I can read your answers!!

A tag by IHM

Mother’s Day today. It is not a huge deal at my place. My mum used to tell me, “do you need a mother’s day to remember / love your mum?” or that it is a western concept or commercialising love and the likes. 

Though, I just thought that it might be an ideal day to do a tag about motherhood by IHM! 🙂

What do I not like about being a mother? There are days when I wonder why I had A. Look at him as a complication or a liability. Would I give up on him? No, never! He is the one who brings a smile (a genuine one) in everyone’s face here at home. A source of joy.

So onto the tag… what do I no like about being  a mother?

  • Worrying about how A would turn out. (Especially with a mum like me 🙂 and no one else)
  • Worrying about what the impact of this divorce is going to be on him.
  • Terrified about whether I would be able to provide for him (anything and everything that he needs and knowing what he would!)
  • Being blamed for disciplining him.
  • Worrying about spoiling him rotten if I did not discipline him (Where is that line?)
  • Making him eat right being such a chore (Why can’t he just know what and how much to eat?! )
  • Seeing him being so sensitive at this tender age, wishing he would not grow up too soon.

A is young. I guess I have a lot more to go through. This is probably just the beginning. The list might grow longer. It might lose a few points. This is a love -hate kind of thing. I love being a mother, having A in my life. I also hate it. It is difficult to pin point how, why and all that. The balance keeps shifting. Don’t know when it would settle or if it would. All said and done, I love my son and think that people who have decided to stay away from a gem like him are the biggest fools on earth!!

There you go IHM. I don’t know if I have done justice to your tag but I just wrote what came to my mind as usual. It might be a little too blunt but it is just how I feel! 🙂

Smile please – thank you!

Vishesh has tagged me yet again!!!!! The smiley man wants us to spread smiles here through this tag.

The objective -to make people smile.

Well, it is a nice objective don’t you say?

An onion can make people cry, but there has never been a vegetable invented to make them laugh – Will Rogers

Don’t know about vegetables, but I will try my best to meet the objective of the tag! What makes me smile? I am way too easy to please! Smile at me, I smile right back 🙂 Comic books like Asterix & Obelix, Tintin, Suppandi, Calvin & Hobbes, Dennis the Menace – name it; I love them. Comedies be they on TV or movies – I enjoy them. Who does not like to break into a smile or laugh?

So, now how do I get you all to smile? Hmm….

This piece of audio

(WP does not allow me to upload the MP3 file directly here. So sorry for the inconvenience 😦 )

has never failed to bring a smile on my face. I think it would bring a smile on anyone’s face. It is the sound of innocent laughter – my son when he was around 2 (supposedly happier times!) laughing away watching his jack in the box go pop!
I love the book series (and of course the TV series) of Yes Minister & Yes Prime Minister. They have a timeless charm. I guess those instances would fit to a tee any time in any political scenario 🙂 So, here is a clip I have enjoyed many a times.

A sport I like to watch – cricket. I have been told by some that it is a boring game. I have often told them, that there are moments that happen on the field that are wonderful to watch. Here is one of them.

Leaving the rest of the picks for others to choose from (and making the post a wee bit shorter 😉 )

I hope I brought a tiny peep of a smile at least on my readers’ face.

Vishesh had asked me to tag the Chennai bloggers & Nikhil.

I also tag Oorja, Muse & Shy 🙂

Climbing to the top of the charts!

My band Létra has released it’s latest album More of them than us. It is is fast climbing to the top of the charts!

Yeah right! In my dreams!! 😀

Sulz has tagged me here Actually she has double tagged me – on the blog and facebook! 

Rules of the meme:

  • Go to Wikipedia. Hit “random” or click http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random. The first random Wikipedia article you get is the name of your band. If it’s already the name of a band, you can hit random again. 
  •  Go to “random quotations” or click http://www.quotationspage.com/random.php3.The last four or five words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.
  •  Go to Flickr and click on “explore the last seven days” or click http://www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days. Third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.
  •  Use Photoshop or similar to put it all together.
  •  Post it to your blog with this text and tag the blog buddies you want to join in.

Weird or just my luck; my first two random hits gave me names of music bands! For the curious out there – They were “Charged GBH” and “Headhunter”. Third try got me : Létra which is a village & commune of the Rhône department of central-eastern France.

I like the French bit of the name…sounds cool and easy to pronounce! 😀

The quotation I got was by Herb Caen –

There are more of them than us

The album name is so random! It can mean anything. I like it 🙂

The image I got is what I used for my album art. Ok…not just like that…I did some exposure settings changes to get this look 🙂 Btw, the first image I got was copyrighted and the owner had asked people to mail him for his approval to use the picture anywhere; so had to try again to get this image. Guess I never get anything right the first time 🙂

As to tagging, I suppose it is open to anyone who has a band or wants to have one or like me has one in one’s dreams 🙂 Please just let me know you have taken this up so I can come and check your band name, album and album art 🙂

Oh before I forget…in going with the post; Teeni has awarded me with

Well, very apt timing indeed – what with my album climbing to the top and all 😉  🙂 Thanks a lot. 

She has awarded me with the proximity award for jumping in and fitting right in.  Thanks again! 

Third time – a charm?

Warning: Really long post!!!! yet feel it is so incomplete (ok…I am nuts!) I am amazed at people who could just pick and list just a few… read on with your ears wide open 😉 speakers on 😀

Vishesh has been tagging me. The first one – I told him that I don’t have the imagination to do that one! The second – well, I had already done it….

So, perseverance pays…he tagged me for the third time here. This tag was started by Destination Infinity.

The Aim: Let the readers know your favourite songs in your regional language/ Hindi / English

There are way too many songs on that particular list of favourite songs!!! (This can end up to be one really long post!!! 🙂 ) I do put in a lot of effort to do any tag right; but I think this one should take the cake. Being someone who loves to listen to any music except heavy metal – it was one helluva job to shortlist songs. I remember how my mum used to be irritated and used to ask me if the house was some “tea kadai” (tea shop – generally playing music all the time!)

I have written a few posts that carry some of the songs that I like hearing. Links given below…

Boney M, ABBA, MASH title song
Find Yourself by Brad Paisley
Song from Minsara Kanavu

  • My mother tongue is telugu. Though I have not really seen many movies in the language, one song that strikes my memory is Mounamelanoyi from Sagara Sangamam

  • From telugu movie Rudraveena, the song below

  • The same movie came as Unnal Mudiyum Thambi in tamil – the song in tamil
  • Another song in the same movie which has a humourous take with various Carnatic ragas at play on cooking

  • One Malayalam song that I love is from the movie His Highness Abdullah – Pramada Vanam

Continue reading “Third time – a charm?”

30 questions

Manasa of  Silver Lining tagged me here. I do like memes which make me think, which act as a tool to get to know a friend & yourself in the process of doing them. So here goes :

1)What is your occupation?
Good question 😉

2)What colour are your socks now?

Wearing none

3)What are you listening to now?
MS Subbulakshmi’s Annamacharya Kritis to be precise this song

4)What was the last thing you ate?
Mor Kazhi – recipe here

5)Can you drive a stick shift?

Yes.

6)Last person you spoke to on phone?
Aaarti

7)Do you like the person who sent you this?
Not interacted much with her except through comments on each other’s blog. Based on that – yes 😀

8)How old are you today?
Do I need to be precise?! Well 32 and odd

9)What is your favourite sport to watch on TV?
Cricket or tennis. Football aka soccer too…

10)What are your favourite drinks?

Mocha (or mocachino),  Hot chocolate, Lassi & masala chai

11)Have you ever dyed your hair?
Never

12)Favourite food?
Nothing in particular…anything lacto-vegetarian goes

13)Last movie watched?
The Bucket List.

14)Favourite day of the year?
None

15)How do you vent out your anger?
Sleep it off or yell/scream, then break down in tears 😦

16)Favourite toy as a child?
Don’t think I had any favourites…more of a run around, get dirty, climb buildings/trees kind of kid really.

17)Favourite season?
Any except the hot scorching summers you have here in Chennai!!!

18)Do you want your friends to email you?
Yes

19)When was the last time you cried?
Friday I think…well, am glad that the answer is not yesterday like most of the time I have answered this question of late (I still believe that crying does not say that you are weak !)

20)What is on the floor of your closet?
Don’t have a closet here at my parent’s home but when I did have them; they would have just enough space for me to step in and choose clothes 😀 Shoes, clothes to be laundered, A’s toys(those seem to be everywhere!!!)

21)Who is the friend you have had the longest?
Most of my school friends – have been together since KG

22)What did you do last night?
played scrabble with MsChillPill and lost yet again !!!.

23)What are you most afraid of?
Have said this one too many times. Yet…loneliness is my greatest fear.

24)Plain,cheese or spicy hamburger?
Veggie burger please with cheese 😀

25)Favourite dog breed?
German Shepherds…well all actually. So, want a pug like the one in the Vodafone ad


My dad keeps saying may be the pug would help both his kid & grandkid 😉
26)Favorite day of the week?
None

27)How many states have you lived in?
2 in the US, 1 in India

28)Diamond or pearl?
both & many more 😉 ( though I don’t wear jewelry much! )

29)What is your wish for this new year?
Peace of mind, a job

30)New year resolutions?

None

Doing this meme, I realise I don’t really have any particular likes or dislikes! Though I do find that most memes go around with the same type of questions…

Anyways…Manasa – am done. Sorry for the delay. I have one more from Sahaja .

Self-love day

A friend of mine had this as his status message

Love yourself before you love anyone else…Happy Valentine’s day!

Coincidentally as I was bloghopping, from Teeni‘s I hopped on to Java Queen’s to this post about Self-love day. While you are it, please do wish Java Queen a very happy birthday. Thanks Teeni for letting us know here 🙂

So, here goes 🙂    

HAPPY SELF-LOVE DAY!! Feb. 13th & 14th, 2009 Here’s how the whole thing works:

1.) You’re gonna grab yourself a banner.

2.) You’re gonna post that banner and then tell us all something that you really like love about yourself (thus, the “self-love” portion of our program).

3.) Ask or beg your readers to post one thing that they too love about you!!! If your blog friends are nice, you shouldn’t have to beg…much.

4.) Enjoy yourself and spread the love by doing this on your blog! If you want to, drop me a line or a trackback so that I know you participated too!

 

What do I love about myself? I love my honesty, my faith in love and that I can laugh even when things are pulling me down 

So now what do you love about me? 😀 

What do you love about yourself?

Interview

Teeni of The Vaguetarian Tea Room gave me these interview questions to answer. 

1. List five secrets to happiness from your own experience.

I wish I knew the secrets to happiness 🙂 What has made me happy? Small things really. Nice things that my son comes up with…insignificant stuff most of the time. Hope I get to know those secrets and if global I will share them 😀 

2. What advice would you have given to your fifteen-year-old self? ( I loved this question I got from the Diva so I’m repeating it for each person I interview).
Teeni had a lovely answer to her question. Advice to myself would be “Live your life! Live it up :)” Have a few crushes (am still made fun of for not having had a single one! 😉 ) Years down the lane when you find that someone, do not let him disappear and keep missing him like crazy!! 😦 

3. Is that advice the same advice as you would give your own fifteen-year-old son? What, if anything, would differ?
Well, I would ask him to live his life. Knowing him like he is now, I don’t think I need to advice him about caution 🙂 The other part will not be applicable to him. Would tell him to be honest, trustworthy and himself 😀

4. Are you a people person? Why or why not do you think so?
I am so a people person. In fact, I cannot see myself doing anything alone and fear of ending up alone scares the beegeezes out of me. I have blogged about it. I get mad/depressed when people tell me that I must learn to live alone or that a career/hobby would replace people in life!

5. What, if anything, would you want to invent or create that you would become famous for?
Nice question! Invent or create?! hmmm!! I am so not an imaginative person to answer this question!  I don’t want to be famous but for personal reasons, I would like to find the cure of some diseases. 

If you haven’t done this interview yet and would like to, then follow these instructions:

1. Leave me a comment saying, “Interview me.”
2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

I know I have not done justice to the lovely questions Teeni has given me. I am sorry, but these are the answers that I came up with! 🙂