Monday, September 12, 2011

Dust to Dust

Anger makes you lonely. It’s what I’ve come to understand. It doesn’t matter who’s right or who’s wrong, at the end of the day both suffer. But does that mean people should stop being angry? Of course not. Love makes you do stupid things like slitting your wrist or risking your life to save your loved ones; does that mean you stop loving?

You experience these feelings because of a reason. Slowly and surely, by the time you’re as old as great-grandfather you start realizing that those outbursts of anger, the sting of loneliness was what helped shape you.

A human is a rock. A mountain when he’s born but reduced to a mere rock by the time he’s through with his life, getting his shape by the constant tumult of emotions he’s faced with day in and day out. And as times passes by, he keeps getting smaller and smaller until he’s finally a little heap of sand and nothing matters anymore. A simple breeze would be enough to blow his traces into oblivion. Guess what they say is true, from dust to dust.

But I’d like to add a small afterthought to that. The dust that every man eventually becomes, merges with the wind and the water, to help shape others like him. Meeker or mightier than him, no one escapes this natural corrosion.

Random rants.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Write On Target!!

Lyricists have been one of the most important people in the Hindi Film Industry from Day 1. Be it RD Burman’s Masoom or Vishal Bharadwaj’s Ishqiya, their songs would not have enjoyed cult status had it not been for Gulzar saab’s pen, out of which words flowed like water from a fountain.

The insight and creativity of such lyricists and poets is worth applauding. Irshad Kamil’s ‘Aj Din Chadheya’ from Love Aj Kal, which incorporated beautiful lines like ‘Manga jo mera hai, jata kya tera hai, maine kaunsi tujhse jannat mang li, Kaisa khuda hai tu, kis kam ka hai tu, rabba jo teri itni si bhi na chali’ expressed the helplessness of the lover in taking his love story forward and at the same time his ecstasy of being in love.

There is hardly any topic that can be thought of, which doesn’t have a song to its name. Shantanu Moitra’s Aal Izz Well from 3 Idiots, stressed on the sheer unpredictability of the future with lines like ‘Bakra kya jane uski jaan ka kya hoga, seekh ghusegi ya saala keema hoga’ while Javed Akhtar’s Kal Ho Na Ho explored a similar philosophy of living in the moment in contrast to worrying for the next day.

Gulzar’s Chaiyya Chaiyya from Dil Se, with lines like Main uske roop ka shedai wo dhoop chhao sa harjai, wo shokh hai rang badalta hai, main rang roop ka saudai, remains one of the most popular songs of the Hindi film industry.

Sometimes, ordinary love songs are made extraordinary just because of the beauty of the words. Songs like Hum Tum’s title track or even Falak Tak from Tashan can be counted as examples.

Now, many people have their choice of writers but Gulzar saab remains my personal favorite. The guy can write Lakdi Ki Kathi, he can give you Is Mod Se Jate Hai Kuch Sust Kadam Raste, Naam Gum Jayega and also has songs like Dhan Te Nan to his name. The sheer variety is breathtaking for an amateur songwriter like me. Hats Off.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

God is an Atheist

I know I am no one to be writing about something about which I have limited or less understanding and knowledge. But what the hell.

God is an atheist. He knows no God to hold Him when He’s wrong. He has no one to bless him when things go wrong. You may be asking: What can go wrong for God? I say absolutely everything.

From the nooks and crannies of Kanpur to the busy traffic filled roads and highways of Delhi, every child that gets hit by a speeding vehicle is a thing gone wrong for God.

People who kill, citing Him the reason, are things gone wrong for God. When a man murders his fellow companion it’s a thing gone wrong for God. Five guys gang raping a woman are things gone wrong for God. Get my point?

But still, have you ever heard that God prays for the weak? Have you ever seen a picture of God bowing His head in respect? I don’t think there ever was such a picture.

Man, to assure himself that there will be someone to look after him even when he’s in the worst of situations, created the illusion of God. Not the other way around.

Call me an atheist. Break my bones for blasphemy. But I still would say the same thing. God was created by man to cover his shortcomings. To provide assurance that someone up there always has better things in store.

Now, I’m not telling anyone to try to break the illusion, but just be aware of it. There is no need on relying on God to make everything right. Learn from Him. Wonder at the thought that even with so many things gone wrong, He has the power to make everything right once again. He knows no God. He is the ultimate power. He will depend on no one to do what’s right. You shouldn’t too.

That is my only point.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Kanpur in a Nutshell...

Chahe kar lo duniya tour

Aai gajab hai Kanpur

The two-liner above may not be the best in poetic history but Kanpurites associate themselves with it like a fish with water. Hometown of the wacky and sophisticated alike, Kanpur has always been the land of…. Pickpockets?? (Sorry, ‘dreams’ was already taken!)

That’s what I’m talking about. Be it Birhana Road, P. Road or even Chunniganj for that matter, you’ll always find the people smiling. Yes, we face power cuts but do we let it diminish the brightness of our face? No, we don’t. Yes, we have more of potholes in every road than gravel, but do we let the fact affect the dimples of our smiles? The answer is a big capital-lettered NO.

We, the people, have faced almost every crisis imaginable and have emerged shinier than ever! We have faced weeklong power shortages, water-shortages have become a way of life, the mercury has broken every record maintained in the MET but we do a thing that many fail to do. We accommodate.

We adjust our way of life according to every scenario. Power shortage? Play carom. Water-shortage? Chhod yar ek din nai nahaenge to mar jaenge kya?(Will we die if don’t bath for a day?) etc etc

So this one’s dedicated to all the wonderful Kanpurites (who’ll probably read this and then roll it up in a cone to hold their bhelpuri) Jai Ho Kanpur!

Love of The Game

‘Why do you play?’ ask this question to any sportsman and you’ll get the same, standard reply: Because they love playing. Period. Not one sportsperson would tell you they play for the money and the glamour. Similarly, the casanova doesn’t follow women around because he loves them, he does it because he loves the chase, the hunt of another beautiful woman to add to his list of conquests.

I quote Mae West, ‘The score never interested me, only the game’. So, what is it that people just can’t get enough of? Is it the adrenaline rush? The feeling of accomplishment as obstacles give way in front of their efforts? Surely not the sheer feeling of elation as they achieve what they expected? Who knows? I wouldn’t as yours truly has never played a sport in his life, let alone win it.

But in my defense, I’d say winning is good but does become boring if there’s no competition. If I bowled a ball to Sachin Tendulkar and he hits a six (the if isn’t required, I know), he probably wouldn’t feel the same satisfaction as he would have felt if he hit a six on Shoaib Akhtar’s ball.

It’s only natural. A hunter’s main purpose is to follow the hunt and devise ways and methods to trick it and finally kill it. Where would all that planning and plotting come to use if his prey stood in front of him and submitted to his will? Where would he get chances to improvise if his kill had a suicide wish in mind?

We say competition has increased in our lives. But if we just change the way we look at things. If we just saw our life as the ultimate game, I’m sure there’s nothing that’ll be able stop us from succeeding.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


Boredom is the key to success.

No, your eyes are fine. The word above is actually ‘boredom’ not ‘hard work’.

I know the eyebrows of many readers would have risen to the point where they became part of their hairlines but after reading this, they would agree too that boredom really does help people.

What is boredom? ‘A state of mind when we are dissatisfied with our surroundings and wish for something more interesting and meaningful’ could be a good definition. Now, if a person is dissatisfied with his surroundings, the next logical step for him would be to involve himself in something more meaningful. Voila, you have growth!

Critics may say growth needn’t lead directly to success. I agree. Growth is just a part of it. The other part of success is called mental peace. When a person is at a point in his life where he’s peaceful with his surroundings, his family etc, I’d consider him successful. Your next question will predictably be ‘How does a man get mental peace in boredom?’ You are correct. He doesn’t. Therefore, he works towards obtaining it.

So you see, my friends, ‘hard work’ is just the tool used to get to success while ‘boredom’ is the cause of it. Next, you’ll be thinking what kind of a lunatic has written this but just think for a second, the lunatic in question wrote it to be read and it is being read.

Isn’t he successful? The answer is yes.

And this particular lunatic actually wrote this because he was bored.

I rest my case.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Simpler Than Thou

Writer's block - often experienced by writers, even the most experienced of them because it's not the experience that counts here rather it's the experience of not being able to experience that elusive experience of churning out an article that will provide the readers a good experience.

Confused? I am too. The whole point of the above paragraph was to explain the meaning of the phrase - 'Writer's Block', which could have been done in about 10 words, but since the majority of us believe that the talent of the author can be measured by how complicated he can make it sound, so a big 'Hurray!' for me.

Hundreds of people have come and gone trying to tell us that 'simplicity' is the need of the day but we, the higher mortals, turn a deaf ear to their fantastic ravings and go about our normal routines trying to make life more complex than it really is.

For example, a 17-year old, giving an exam comes across a question which he can answer in 3 steps, but thinking that the answer couldn't obviously be so simple, attempts the longer way of doing it and ends up doing it wrong. End of story.

How many times has it happened that we are looking for an answer but refuse to accept the one staring us in the face?

From people like Gandhi, Lennon to the superstars of today like Naseerudin Shah, Nana Patekar, all have found their peace and contentment in the simple so why not us? Why should we run races we don't have to run? Why should we look for reasons to add another problem to our already tension-ridden lives?

Think about it.