Monday, November 30, 2009

Identity Crisis!

I remember when we were kids (my sister and I)… she was always losing things somehow! Her pencils, sharpeners, even books at times… and she simply wouldn’t be able to find them! Either Mom or I had to eventually come to her rescue! All her things were found exactly where she’d left them of course; the only trouble was she never could remember where that place would be!

I used to find it totally indigestible! For me, everything was in a fixed order… you do this, then you do that, then you go there and pick that up, and leave it on that shelf. 1-2-3-4… and so on. All numbered steps. Always in the same sequence. And I could repeat that sequence even when I was half asleep! So I could never understand how one would forget where they’d kept something. Bottomline: I always thought she was just plain careless.

Ahh! But those who say that “history repeats itself” are so very correct! So many years later, I come to the realization that she was not careless; she was just… non-linear in her approach!

. . .

Until less than 2 years ago, everything in my life had a definite place on a fixed path. Like a clockwork machine. There was just one way of doing anything. Hence, there was never any confusion. But now, I seem to have become more abstract in my thinking. My mind simply wouldn’t follow the same logical path each time it is told to do something. And I have no way of knowing which path it might take on some particular day.

Oh but the bigger problem is that I also have no way of knowing whether it will ever be able to return to the same route again! End result: I am also losing my things now! Not exactly “losing” them permanently, but, like it used to happen with my sis, I simply can’t recall where I kept them!

Major source of frustration for my Dad, ‘coz you see, he has never been used to seeing me like this! Every other day, I’m rummaging through all the cupboards & drawers in the house, looking for something or the other. It’s like “If I thought I might use it after doing XYZ, then I might have kept it here… or maybe I thought I would need it with PQR… or perhaps I might have grouped it with LMN…???” And the mental torture continues… following different paths in the maze of my mind... until one strikes finally! Phewwww!

Please don’t get me wrong here… I don’t live in a perpetual mess! The above might give you the impression that my room is always littered with all my stuff… but nothing could be farther from the truth! I’m still very neat. I still keep everything in perfect order… it’s just that I don’t remember later what order I’d put them in!

For example, earlier, the clothes in my almirah were always arranged color-wise. No deviation from this rule ever. And within each color also, there was a definite order in which the dresses hung. I could tell my sister from the other room that I wanted “the 5th blue suit from the right”, and she’d get the right one. But now… oh things are so very different now!

At times I hang my dresses color-wise (could be in the order of same color, contrast colors, different colors in same tone alternating with each other); at other times I might put them in the order of casual-to-party; and at even other times, I might arrange them length-wise (long kurtas, mid-length ones, shorter ones)! So telling my Sis from the other room where a certain piece of clothing might be found in my almirah is not even a possibility now!

And the same funda applies with practically everything else in the house… from the spice-jars in the kitchen to the books in the 4 different locations I have for them in my house! A big M-E-S-S! And on top of all that, my Dad says HE can’t understand why I have suddenly turned into my sister! Ohhhhh! He couldn’t even begin to imagine my own confusion and frustration at this unexpected change in me! Seen the movie “Bourne Identity”? Remember how Jason Bourne feels when he doesn’t remember who he is and why he’s doing whatever he’s doing? That should give you some idea!

Actually, to be very honest, I think I know the reason why this change is happening. (That still doesn’t make it any easier to accept, by the way!) But, any attempt to explain it to you guys would be beyond the scope of this post… even this blog, in fact! I would have to write an entire novel about my life! But then I would also have to become famous before I write that novel… otherwise who’d pay money to buy my autobiography!

Anyways… the fact remains that whatever those undisclosed reasons may be, I am not going back to my old self. Period. I know it’s frustrating for people who have known me for years to see me behave in ways they are just not used to… but hey, it’s even more nerve-racking for me to be gradually losing my complete identity… the one that I have associated myself with for almost 30 years! So just have a little bit of patience… and get used to it… and also help ME get used to it!

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Friday, November 27, 2009


Marriage seems to be a major stress point in the Indian society... both for males as well as females.

If you are a male, single, and are not financially settled, it automatically gets translated to "Oh my God! How will you get married?" And since getting married seems to be the only worthwhile *accomplishment* for anyone in the Indian society, it means that you are DOOMED! You are a *good-for-nothing* fellow!

If you are a female, then things are equally bad. Nobody takes you seriously, even if you are running the entire house by yourself, AND managing your studies at the same time! The females in your neighborhood treat you like some no-brainer-kid... even if they might actually be younger than you in both age and experience! Why? Just because they happen to be married and you aren't! Not even the housemaids give you any respect... just because you are a "Didi" and not a "Memsaab"!

What the hell! Why is that pinch of "sindoor" so important anyway? At times I get the feeling that you could be the most successful female of the country and yet nobody will truly respect you here... if you aren't married too!

Crap! We Indians really need to set our priorities right... always focusing too much on irrelevant things! Can't understand why it's so difficult for Indians to just accept people for what they are... and not for how much they earn, or how many kids they have! "Developing country" my foot! Nothing's changed here in the last 60+ years of independence... and nothing will for at least another 200 years! Just remain focused on getting married and producing babies! And make life hell for anyone who doesn't do this!

P.S. - Exactly 1 week from today, 'miss_teerious' will celebrate her 3rd birthday. I was hoping to complete 300 posts by then, but my mind's got completely distracted with the "surprise" I'm working on! I wonder if I'll even remember to make a "birthday post" here! Do remind me guys, if it looks like I've forgotten!

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Friday, November 20, 2009

5 Reasons Why Tags Are Good

The above headline might come as a shock to most of you, considering the fact that I grumble so much each time I’m asked to do a Tag here! Well, the truth is… I don’t have anything against Tags specifically! It’s just that I hate doing a lot of any one thing! And these Tags have a tendency to start a sort of never ending loop! You suddenly wake up one day to find the entire blog-o-sphere around you filled with Tags! However, if used in sparing measures, Tags can prove to be very useful actually. You want to know how… read on…

1. Tags help us get over a Writers’ Block
Those millions of times… when we sit with a blank Word Document open in front of us… and our fingers wandering aimlessly over the keyboard, trying to rub that slightly embossed mark off the letters ‘F’ and ‘J’! (I bet you just tried to do exactly that too!) Tags give us something to start writing about – anything – just so the creative juices begin to flow again and we get into the “mood” to write again!

2. They let us explore our creative potential
Alright, let’s be honest here fellows! Tags ARE usually pretty boring stuff… to write, as well as to read! And that’s where their usefulness lies! As Sachin Tendulkar said in his recent interview on the TV, “we ought to make our weakness our biggest strength”! And the adventure lies in how you present even a drab routine dish, so that it looks like the most tempting item on the table!

Picture Credit: ME - "Atta Maggi" with Boiled Eggs

3. Useful in Link Building
Not all of us here blog for making money, but nevertheless, it sure does feel good knowing that so many people read what we write! And we are constantly looking for ways to increase our reader-base. Tags provide a genuine way to create and promote such a linked network. You link back to the person who tagged you, and you also link (ahead?) to the people you tag. Link exchange, backed with the power of content… clean and honest SEO!

4. Introduce “New Kids in the Block”
I’ve lost count of how many of my blogger friends have been discovered on such “Tag” posts! While many of them were veteran bloggers, quite a few were completely new in the neighborhood! Tags give bloggers a fairly easy way to initiate some interaction with strangers, so that within days, the newbies also start feeling like a part of the “family”!

5. Prepare us for a very bright future (I saved the best for the very end!)
Tags give us practice… for facing “celebrity interviews”. You know, like the kind of interviews Sushmita Sen had after she became Miss Universe! Or the ones that TV Channels reserve for new faces in Bollywood! We'll become so used to answering stupid questions that we won’t have to scratch our head for answers, when we finally become famous!

As you can see from the (seemingly?) well-researched points above, Tags are a very powerful arrow in a blogger’s quiver! We just need to learn when to use them and how to use them.

However, the above post does not mean that you all bombard me with more Tags immediately! I still have a few pending in my list! Though I have decided I won’t do the “How Dumb” Tag and the “Yes/No” Tag, ‘coz they don’t give me any scope to get creative. You can only answer with ‘X’ marks in one and ‘Yes/No’ in the other. Too restrictive! But if you find some cool Tag with lots of freedom to write about senseless stuff, feel free to pass it on to me! Though I don’t promise I’ll do it right away, ok! :D

Here's more in "Tags (or memes)"!

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Thursday, November 19, 2009


You miss your loved ones when you are having the blues... but you miss them even more when you've accomplished something very special or important! Isn't it amazing?

P.S. - No, I'm not becoming a micro-blogger! This is just a one-time random post! My usual "1000-words" will soon follow! :D
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Thursday, November 12, 2009

"Replace-and-Add" Tag

So... ZB tagged me with this long time back. I ought to have completed some other tags before this one, but guess what! Whoever said "Flattery gets you nowhere" was deliberately misleading you! ZB gave me & my blog such a flattering testimonial recently, that his pending tag got promoted to the very top of the list! He he he! :P

1. What is your current obsession?
For a change, without any obsessions!

2. What are you wearing today?
A smile :)

3. What’s for dinner?
Depends on my mood at that time. Making 'khichdi' for lunch by the way... with curd, 'papad', pickle & 'aloo ka chokha'! Mmmmmmm! Any takers?

4. What’s the last thing you bought?
Groceries... yesterday.

5. What are you listening to right now?
"Musical" beggars down the street, whose "music", unlike their kindred in the Hindi Cinema, sounds more like "noise pollution"!

6. What do you think about the person who tagged you?
Naughty. :D

7. If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you like it to be?
Somewhere by the beach... quiet & peaceful! :D

8. What are your must-have pieces for summer?
Water ???

9. [REPLACED] Best "pickup line" you've come across so far?
Hi, I'm Mr. Right... someone said you were looking for me...

10. Which language do you want to learn?
Spanish has been on my list ever since I heard Ricky Martin for the first time!

11. What’s your favorite quote?
Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most.

12. Who do you want to meet right now?
No one. Not in the mood to socialize right now.

13. What is your favorite color?

14. What is your favorite piece of clothing in your own closet?
It's not about "favorite" right now... it's about "what fits"!

15. What is your dream job?
Anything that fully utilizes my hyper-active brain!

16. What’s your favorite magazine?
No favorites as such... I occasionally read "Life Positive" though.

17. If you had $100 now, what would you spend it on?
A new Hard Drive for my PC and a stick of 2GB DDR2 RAM!

18. What do you consider a fashion faux pas?
Er... for a person who has gone to office wearing purple suit, black chunni, green sweater and a blue rubber-band in her hair, don't you think this is the wrong question to ask?

19. Who are your style icons?
Style... well Amitabh Bachchan still rules! :p

20. What kind of haircut do you prefer?
Short... free... :D

21. What are you going to do after this?
Work on my upcoming surprise for you guys! ;)

22. What are your favorite movies?
Check my Blogger Profile for the answer to this... or my Orkut Profile if you wish to. FaceBook - I don't think you will be able to, unless you are in my Friend List there.

24. What are three cosmetic/makeup/perfume products that you can't live without?
Perfumes, perfumes, and perfumes! Everything else makes my worst nightmares come alive!

23. What inspires you?
Stories of people who've managed to "make it", even against all odds...

24. Give us three styling tips that always work for you:
Ahh... styling tips from me! Hmmm... let's see...
i) Make sure you are wearing the kurta, salwar & dupatta of the *same* set!
ii) Cut your hair short, so you don't need to worry about whether the rubber-band matches the rest of your outfit or not!
iii) Fall sick whenever you are required to go to a party with makeup!

25. What do you do when you “have nothing to wear” (even though your closet’s packed)?
You crib... what else! And then you pull out anything that fits and wear it... and pray nobody will notice... or at least will be too busy to comment!

26. Coffee or tea?
Mmmmmmm.... love them both! :D

27. What do you do when you are feeling low or terribly depressed?
Read something inspiring. (Refer to Question 23 above)

28. What is the meaning of your name?
Goddess Saraswati :D

29. Which other blogs do you love visiting?
None. I like to read them in my Google Reader to avoid some of the really hurtful color schemes! I like to visit only if I wish to leave a comment.

30. Favorite Dessert/Sweet?
ONE favorite??? :O :O :O But that's IMPOSSIBLE for me to answer!

31. Favorite Season?
Just about right now... when it's not cold enough to wear a sweater and not hot enough to make you sweat!

32. If I come to your house now, what would you cook for me?
Like I said, I'm making 'khichdi' for lunch today... but in the meanwhile, we can have coffee I guess... although I won't make it... my Dad will! :D

33. What is the right way to avoid people who purposefully hurt you?
Well... if only we let this sink in that they are "purposefully" seeking to hurt us, then it just won't hurt us anymore... right?

34. [MY QUESTION] What's the one thing that you like most about me? :D :D :D

I tag all my blog readers with this. If you have already done this tag earlier, then you need to answer only the last question now.

Rules for those who are tagged: Respond and rework – answer these questions on your blog. Replace one question that you dislike with a question of your own, and add one more question to the list. Then tag eight or ten other new set of people.

IMPORTANT: Question No. 34 cannot be replaced! :D

Here's more in "Tags (or memes)"!

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Sunday, November 8, 2009

YOU Can Help Make India A Better Place.

You don't need to be a social worker or a politician to improve the state of your country. You can contribute simply by being a more responsible citizen, aware of your rights and responsibilities.

ZB has listed some very practical every-day things that we all CAN do to make our country a better place to live in... things that we usually tend to ignore as being too insignificant to create a change. But the fact remains that little drops of water make a mighty ocean!

Here are the "drops of water" that you can contribute... each one of you...

We can be responsible citizens and keep our premise clean.
(That includes "not littering public places" AND "not spitting pan-masala everywhere"!)

We can take part in elections and vote for the deserving candidate.
(Using your "right to vote" is also your responsibility.)

We can help by educating our children and not show prejudice to sons over daughters.
(Sons can serve water to the guests as well as daughters can. They can also make tea!)

We can help by investing in our country and provide employment.
(Finance Indian entrepreneurs; sponsor worthy Indian students for higher education in whatever field, even sports.)

We can help by being entrepreneurs.
(Think out-of-the-box... be the 'G' of "G.O.D."... "Generate".)

We can help by being broad minded and not be part of caste-ism or class-ism.
(Get over such petty things folks. Learn from us Farmers. Out there in FarmVille, we don't even care where our Neighbors are from. All that matters is we are having fun together! Yes, you can learn so much even from a silly internet game!)

We can help by being religiously tolerant.
(Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christians... they're all the same. All ignorant mortals led by a team of so-called "religious preachers" who have their own selfish agenda to pursue!)

We can help by investing in Govt. agencies like LIC or SBI.
(Following that line of thought, maybe there should be "Swiss Banks" in India too! At least all that "black money" of the country would remain in the country that way, and could be utilized for capital development projects within the nation!)

We can help by helping our neighbors in time of need.
(We follow the West blindly in so many things... I wonder why we don't copy the good things of their system!)

We can help by not crowding hospitals or public places.
(And railway stations and trains! Is it really necessary that 6 people accompany one person to see him/her off?)

We can help by being clean and health conscious.
(Avoid smoking in front of non-smokers. Cover your mouth & nose while coughing/sneezing. Basic stuff. We were taught all this in Class 1 guys! You don't need the Government to start an initiative on this now, do you?)

We can help by knowing our culture and help preserve it (like Japanese).
(And no... culture does not mean religious dogmas and senseless practices like child marriage or dowry!)

We can help by welcoming foreign tourists and make India more tourist friendly.
(Which means that we'll need to intervene if we see a foreigner being exploited by the shopkeepers in Lajpat Nagar. We'll also need to step in if we see that a foreign female is being/about to be sexually harassed!)

We can help by not carving “I LOVE PRIYANKA CHOPRA” on public places and historical monuments.
(I'm sure none of my blog readers do this at least!)

We can help by conserving energy and resources.
(Fans, lights, ACs... all have an "Off" switch. There's something called "car-pooling". Above all, God has given us legs!)

We can help by not supporting political parties who support BANDH and HARTALS.
(And also who use our tax-money for their party campaigns!)

We can help by not encouraging beggars.
(Ask them to work... as your house-help, in your shop/office... and see how quick they run! I have seen a woman hit a baby in her arms with a big stone until the poor kid's forehead was covered in blood, and then she hurried into the waiting traffic at the Dak Bungalow Crossing here! You are encouraging such brutality if you give such people any money. Try offering to buy the medicine for them, instead of giving them the money... and see how they disappear at that too!)

We can help by questioning public authorities and wrong practices.
(Toughest. I guess this includes giving/taking bribes. But that's been termed as official "service charges" now. For example, if you want to get an Income Tax Refund, the rate is fixed at 10% of the amount involved. For some other kind of transactions, I've heard it even goes as high as 25%! Anyways, I got this SMS a couple of days ago, haven't yet had the opportunity to use it... perhaps one of you might have some use for it... "If a Central Govn. employee seeks bribe for official work, please inform SP, CBI on nine-four-three-one-eight-two-one-seven-six-three or nine-zero-zero-six-six-nine-zero-zero-six-six between 9:30 am to 6:00 pm." Let me know if it is of any use.)

Well, there's a lot more in ZB's article. He has taken one step forward in the right direction... using the resources & skills he has, viz. writing. I have added my voice to his initiative by helping it reach out to more people. YOU also have a voice... whether you choose to use that voice or not is totally up to you. You can contribute by spreading awareness about his every-day suggestions too -- sharing the link on Twitter, FaceBook, Digg, whatever platforms your are aware of, and even your own blog. More importantly, you can implement those suggestions in your life as well. As for me... I just realized even my computer has an "Off" button!

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Sunday, November 1, 2009

Farmerette on Vacation!

I figured I had to do something to ensure that I don't give in to temptation and start playing again! So I arranged all my small animals and birds to leave a message for my neighbors, and, at the same time, make sure that the farmland wasn't looking empty... begging me to start plowing and planting on it again!

So... it is official now -- the Farmerette has worked hard, and has now gone on a much deserved vacation! She'll probably be back sometime in January.

P.S. You can click on the image to see a larger view.

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