Thoughts on Independence Dayย 

Everyone wishing each other a ” happy Independence Day”. As a friend pointed out, irony is us wishing each other in a language left by those from whom we got our independence. At least one channel showing Gandhi. “Patriotic” few pinning flags on their clothes, raising the flag in housing communities, some listening to the PM’s speech ( eloquent orator he is… Some complaining he is doing it in Hindi! ). A few looking at Independence Day sales. That is the day here. 

We here are a hypocritic nation. We take pride in knowing English and getting business. The same hate it and ridicule those who speak English ( call them Peter & Philomina… May be it is a Tamil thing… Still ), hate it when people say learn a different regional language other than your native tongue.  A nation that loves love stories like the one on titanic of glorify love without boundaries but have moral policing! A nation that bows to the divine female say that even God is Ardhanarishwara but treat women like doormat. A country where sports is just a free period that is taken over if other important subjects need to be completed! Yet the few who fight the odds and go represent their country in events are expected to perform miracles, rake in medals!! Let me not even get started with this division based on caste, religion. I am in a country where laws are there to be broken and one can get away with it if you have the clout. I live in a country where you follow the law get in say an accident when not at fault, you speak out and be chided ” hey how can you speak out being a woman?!” Yeah the country where the woman is glorified as “maa” ” Shakti” and what not!!  You have to mention your father’s or husband’s name on every official form!! Why?? 

The permission slip at the kid’s health room has “father’s/guardian’s signature”. I refused to sign saying am the mother or to be generic a parent. I get the nonchalant answer, strike out and write mother or parent as you please & sign. 

May be I have become cynical. May be I am just speaking my mind which others think but not say. Stuck in a country quite backward but thinks it is quite there in being developed. If this is the case in a metro don’t know how it is in other truly backward areas.  Living in a country that suddenly becomes patriotic two days in a year. 

Oh I have to relate this incident here. On the way back home in the local train… A couple of college gals. One asks you coming to college on Monday? The other says no I have to go to church. The former says on a Monday?? She says yeah I go on republic day! Seriously!!! ???? Patriotism rocks!! ๐Ÿ˜

Am sure there has been enough of a rant about how people are so ready to enrage about things happening around the world (not all) but forget or ignore what is happening in their back yard or even in their own homes. 

Yes, I have heard that everywhere there are problems. I just wish we did not turn a blind eye to what happens here or create a furore when something is portrayed on media while things like that happen almost every other day! Forget it when the media does, then if it is a slow media day it gets highlighted as say some anniversary of the event. 

Gandhiji said when a woman can walk alone at night with no fear we have got Ram Rajya. No thank you! I don’t want Ram Rajya where the King ousts his wife just cos someone doubted her!! 

Rant over?? For now!! 

Edit: came to a movie and saw this caption ” Be proud to be an Indian not just on Independence Day ” ๐Ÿ™‚


Why oh why?!

I was going from one channel to another on the radio. Sick of ads saying – special for International Women’s day!! Do we really need one in this day and age? If so, why & where? says this for why women’s day… Impatient optimists at Bill & Melinda Gates foundation say this on why still?
Yes, I understand there are many places where uplifting of women is needed. No arguments there at all.
Me personally, I don’t want a special day. I want to just be treated on par. I seriously do not want a women’s bank as proposed by the FM in the budget. My reaction was like for what joy?! I do not want special quotas anywhere. I must get something because I am worthy of that. I want to prove myself for the skills & knowledge I have. Not because I am a woman! If I apply for a ration card, and am posed a question “who is the head of the family?”; if I respond saying that I am….I want the guy there to accept it – not retort asking who my father is or husband is!!!! I am not an object of sex to be gaped at, but a fellow human being to be seen at with respect that I would proffer to the other.
Don’t get me wrong….on a lighter note, yes I want someone special to treat me as someone special ๐Ÿ˜‰ not just on this day…but every day!!! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Just waiting for that someone who will treat me as an equal and consider me special ๐Ÿ˜‰
I find that people are making this a huge joke!! Special offers, discounts, contests, walks, special messages to the special women, remembering women who have excelled in their fields. Excuse me…if we are special on this day, we are special everyday!! Those women who are achievers need to be acknowledged all the time; not just on this particular day. Alright, let all this be done…how much of the proceeds made through these sales actually go to say save a girl child from being aborted/murdered?!
I know it might sound like blasphemy but I do not support celebrating womanhood on one particular day. Do we stop being women on other days?!
I want a society where it is no big deal for a woman to walk into a pharmacy, with men around or not…and ask for a sanitary napkin without being embarrassed. Why even ask for a condom (ok…I know considering the circumstances here in India that is a stretch for now! ๐Ÿ™‚ ). Isn’t having periods a part of being a woman?! Why whisper?!?!
We have come far in terms of equality for women and oppression. Voting, Representation, leadership, education. I know we have a long way to go to be really equal (may be when it is not considered blasphemy when I say let the guy take on the girl’s name and vice versa…after all they are getting married to each other! ๐Ÿ™‚ )
I wish people understand the significance of the day than make it so commercial that it actually loses its value.
Think I have ranted enough! ๐Ÿ˜€ Do let me know how many share my views. Am open to hearing opposing views too….

PS: I found that international men’s day is on November 19th! How many knew that?!?!

Julie & Julia

I watched the movieย Julie & Julia over 2 days!! So, here goes my attempt at a movie review my ishtyle ย ;). The movie was good. The acting was too – well with an actor like Meryl Streep what else can one expect? I liked the way the movie went back and forth between Julia Childs & ย Julie.

The movie appealed to me as it involved quite a few things that I like – cooking, blogging. Isn’t it amazing that then and now, women are faced with hmph…what is there to do?! Julie (Amy Adams) has a full time job, takes care of her home, yet she had to set a target and keep it to realise that her life is not really wasted. Julia in her days had to fight to even enter Le Cordon Bleu. Hasn’t time changed anything at all? We still find ourselves wondering what is there to do? What would make us feel worthwhile – Is there something else? If one is a home maker, it is not enough. If one is working, she does not take good care of her home. Nothing is ever alright or fine! We have to go more than the extra mile to satisfy oneself. In retrospect, is it us we satisfy or people around us?! The expectations that we set up for ourselves – aren’t they ruled by what is expected of us by others sometimes?!

Back to the movie ๐Ÿ˜‰ (spoiler alert) ย I felt it captured the emotions of blogging pretty well – wondering who is out there reading, happiness to get a comment, or being ranked high! Emotions of a woman – well, Meryl Streep was just too good. The way she portrayed her happiness for her sister having a baby yet, the pain of her own being childless. I must say that watching the movie almost makes me wonder how a poached egg tastes ๐Ÿ™‚ The blown attempts at trying out a recipe to the jubilation of getting it right. The adoration of a fan. The love for cooking. The boredom of a job. The not having a place to call home. Everything was covered well. The fight between Julie & her husband and how she related that to not being a good wife – and how she thought that Julia would be different and not fight. The love & support between the couples. The competition among friends…even McCarthy politics.

Over all – ย a good watch.


Reema had written this post on the issue of remarriage of widows, widowers, the attitude ofย  Indian society toward both. I agree to every single thing that she has written.

This post though stems from a different situation – an extension to what she has penned in already. From what I have heard and faced over the recent past; I should say that the attitude extends to divorced men & women too. In this day of rising divorces & broken marriages, I don’t know how many go through all this!

It is so easy for people to accept a man take on another wife while it is blasphemy if a woman thinks of the same. There are some who say, if it happens it is alright but don’t go looking for a relationship. A relationship went south once…so take care or live for your kid, get a career. Suggestions to forget one’s needs or replace them (one supposedly would be too busy to notice and when you do, you would be too old and it would be too late. Worry about it now – then the response Why are you thinking of something so far away?!? ๐Ÿ™‚ ).ย  A woman is not strong enough if she looks for a partner – get a grip! is what one hears. You will be fine! Though it is absolutely acceptable that the man “moves on”, dates, finds a partner proactively!!

I am just reminded of Revathi’s Marupadiyum (Shabana Azmi’s Arth in Hindi) where the woman chooses to be single. The dialogue sticks out in my head now : the heroine says the woman has grown up being a daughter of some man taking that name, then she takes on her husband’s name, then the mother of her kids.

So, when ever will the woman live for herself and not be penalised for it? Let a single woman be; if she wants it that way, let a woman not take her husband’s name; if she wants that….and if a divorcee (well in India you are that…not single again!) wants to live alone – so be it or if she looks for a relationship…why not?

Personal choices have no place! Being judged by society, being stamped as whatever – will these ever stop?There are times when I think single women (widows & divorcees) make that choice because of the attitudes she may have to face finally. It gets to you – the society….even if you don’t want to care, at some point it does overwhelm you to resign yourself to fate!

If this is the plight of women in a city where most of the population is educated. I don’t even want to think of those in villages where “tradition” has its place! Poor women stuck in marriages where abuse is the norm (physical, emotional, sexual….)

I doubt if these prejudices would ever end! At least I don’t think they will in my lifetime. I don’t even think I am being negative here. I feel that I am being practical – cynical yes, but pragmatic! Here is to hoping I am wrong!

Next time, some one wants to say “get a grip!” , “stay strong” – Stop!! The woman probably is doing it already!!

Yet again

Yet again a post in Laksh’s blogย prompted me to write this entry. I am not listening to a lot of English songs here in Chennai, but this post made me check this one out on youtube. I like the song no doubt. Have listened to quite a few songs which talk about how one needs to be stronger etc.., I have loved those songs too. When I hear them, I appreciate the sentiment. Do I really follow it? That is a totally different aspect!

There are times I put myself first; and then actually feel guilty of doing so! These lines…

wish there was more
I could say
another fairy tale fades to grey

Iโ€™ve lived on hope
like a child
walking that mile
faking that smile
all the while
wishing my heart had wings

strike a chord somewhere! I don’t fake my smile though. I still manage to smile even through all the mess that I am going through right now. The fairy tales have faded, don’t really believe in hope any more. Trying to dredge through each day. I don’t really feel bad to say that I live for A at the end of the day.

Am I proud of myself or the life I lead? No; but as a friend says I need a huge shot of self-confidence. Maybe some day I might be proud of the way A turned out (the flicker of hope?!? ๐Ÿ˜€ )

Well, whatever it is about me – I do look up and appreciate the strong women around me; strong in their own way. The one strong woman who I should probably draw huge inspiration from is probably my mother who still instils strength in me though being bedridden as she is ๐Ÿ™‚ I am proud to be her daughter; hope she can be proud of me some time!