Category Archives: Prose

Quarter life crisis


The green grass didn’t amuse her anymore. It annoyed her. She felt this surge of nostalgia take over. As a kid she’d always avoided grassy areas, especially damp grass. The texture of moist earth felt way too creepy. But with the passage of time, she’d been taught to love grassy blotches of earth. They would have a cooling effect on her mind and soul, some sort of spiritual influence and shit.

She didn’t feel the same about a lot of things anymore. She used to be obsessed with typewriters. I guess it was just a hipster phase when every upcoming instagram user with more than a hundred followers felt the need to spit a few mismatched but influential words on to a page. She tried to compete with them too. She tried to validate her talent by the number of double taps she’d get. But I guess most of the people who liked her content were either trying to cope with a virtual cult that made them feel special, or some people were going through that ideological outburst of a phase where they go through an existential crisis and question everything like freshly cut World War II wound.

So she’d rather just sit on a bench, at the brink of everything that was lofty, and contemplate all that had brought her to this point in life. Now that she was here, her quarter life existential crisis and a handful of compiled essays from people like Huxley and Durrant were fucking with her mind. Was she validating her existence well enough? Well, after she’d secured her name among the thousands of other fellow professionals with much lesser IQs, exposure and comprehension of the finer things in life, she answered that in a negative. She wasn’t a member of Mensa. She hadn’t scored any exceptional grades or done anything outstanding at a very young age.

Were her ideas even original anymore? In 2017, an original idea is overly eccentric, weird, vulgar, or offensive. You have to go out of your way to be recognized. You have to build a platform. You need approval of a significant amount of common people or a limited number of important people by catering to their likes and dislikes. Go for things that are “trending” or “in vogue” so that they could forget you in two weeks. At least that one time you were popular for that one thing. It is the best you can get. So maybe five, ten, fifteen years later some journalist who is out of ideas will dig you up during their mundane routine and resurrect your fame. That’ll validate your existence well enough. It’s the best shot you’ve got. It might help you through bad times, motivate you to achieve a mediocre milestone, and then you’ll just go through life like everyone else.

She wondered about the people who had gained fame after they died. Many people realize the worth of a person after they’re long gone. Those people are not made for their time or their people. So in another time, among some other people, they shine. Does that validate their existence? Will they ever feel they way someone feels when you compliment them during their life? Will they be able to absorb the sunlight through their senses? Or would it drive them mad. Maybe they’re better off dead. At least they’re making the lives of the mortals better.

She could evaluate her life all she wanted and she’d just find herself at square one. So I guess it would be better to look at life from where she stood, in her shoes, from her eyes. She’s the best person who knew herself. She knew where she’d started and where she was now; successful, educated, mature, diligent, kind, fairly good looking, domestically competent, socially loveable, witty, yet obstinate, moody, irritable, sensitive, distant, hyper and loud. But she was who she was. She didn’t deny her existence. Maybe she’d borrowed a few ideas from her mother, her relatives, people she’d met throughout her life, experiences she’d gone through, and writers she loved. She was a set of circumstances and traits that had brought her to this moment and she was okay with it. For the life she was given, this is the best she could’ve done while being true to herself. She’s come a long way and she’s got an even longer way to go.



There are many things one can identify instantly; colors, objects, places and names. But there are also things that take more time to identify; ideas, feelings. There might come a point in life where these two may overlap. At that crossroad, you find yourself grasping the blurred line like a trace of your finger on sand washed by the sea. There’s a concept that home is where you’re born, brought up and live. But adopted orphans have homes where they weren’t born. We may abandon our childhood homes for bigger, better houses. One may live in a dormitory and feel more at home than the place where they have to go back to every holiday. Someone’s safe place can be home, away from home; an attic, a playground, a device, a road or a stranger. Two arms can be more like home than four walls.
I have a home. It was an old, tattered chicken coup where we hid ourselves from the rain to heal our broken bones at the price of our wings. Then I found out that I was born to fly, I knew I had it in me. So I’d fly only when I could. It was never enough. I started looking forward to my flights. I grew rebelliously fonder the more I was criticized and bashed for it. It was wrong and I knew it. But I still flew but with a pet’s tag around my neck and a pebble called guilt tied around my ankle. But flying away makes you tired and this home was getting exhausting. So I opened a map of all the possibilities that could help make a home of my own. I got lost so many times and always returned to the nest, a bit more broken than before. After a while I’d set out again and learn more about these paths. But you see, everyone already has a home of their own. They’ll let you in for a while as a guest. If you get comfortable they might ask for rent. No one likes sharing their own home much. At one point of course I gave up. From all I’d observed, all the paths I’d trodden, all the people I met I could only believe there was no escaping the nest. God had assigned me this home and that’s it. No matter where I went, I HAD to come back here. My damnation was absolute.
Since I couldn’t escape my fate, I couldn’t expect to just find another home. I knew I had to make one for myself. Turns out that’s not as easy as I wished was and there was no way I could do it on my own. But when everyone’s already got a home, who would build a home with me? Someone as lost and misfit as me. The map didn’t show the way that lead to such people. From my observation I realized that these people walked among us, just a bit differently. You had to look out for the signs; a stray idea, a lofty mind, a cynic, a skeptic, a silent thinker, a loud (mis)leader. With time, I found many of these people. All of them figuring out what to do and where to go. Everyone fancied their own path. Except one.
What if you don’t even know that you’re home isn’t your home? No path makes sense because you don’t know where to go. That’s where people like me intervene. I found a lost one and showed him the sky. The infinity of the sky made him realize the limits of his home. It was unbelievable. All he knew and believed now stood up against each other in contradiction. I held his hand and we walked together through all these wondrous paths. Some I’d discovered and shared with him. Others we discovered together. We decided we needed and wanted each other in this journey to create a home. We had nothing to lose and everything to gain.
I thought I knew what home was supposed to be like. I was mistaken when the iridescent light reflected on his iris. The black cracks in his deep brown, earthen eyes directed me. There’s a road I never knew of until there was no distance between us. It was a one way path; him to me and me to him. Our home is a refuge for intellect, an emotional safekeep within the walls of realism. There’s a room full of all that we say, share, think and believe. It resonates with laughter. Smiles shine through huge windows. When thunderstorms of doubt, fear, insecurity, inhibitions and despair try to shake our foundations, we lock our hands together and let the rain of tears wash away all that blinds out our happiness. We live in our home of love.

Jester’s Tears


There was a sickening ball lurching and churning in the pit of her stomach. She nervously twitched and compulsively swallowed spit. Nothing helped in diverting her attention from the dreadful doom that hovered at the back of her mind. She was alone.

This lonely girl pitied herself as she had no alternative. Whether she was in her office or her bedroom, inside or outside, when she ate, drank, shit, pissed, laughed, screamed, or sobbed, the echoes just bounced off the walls and mocked the emptiness.

If this silly girl accepted this as her life and tried to comprehend how she could possibly make it better, she was guilty. If she’d stay stuck in the moment and wait for a miracle to happen, she was guilty. If she tried to get her act together and dared to be content, she was guilty. If she led a life at her own pace in her own direction, she was guilty. If she obeyed others, she was guilty. If she was optimistic, she was guilty. If she was pessimistic, she was guilty. Not only was she lonely, but she was guiltily alone.

This foolish girl believed that a person has the ability to makes others happy. Even if she knew she couldn’t please everyone, she didn’t want to hurt or cause displeasure to someone because of herself. She tried so hard to be as harmless as she could, sometimes at the cost of her ego, ever since she realized that ego was a self construed idea that submitted only to one’s own selfish desires.

This idiotic girl surrounded herself with drawn faces and painted colors; a drawn illusion of belonging. Little did she know that every man is for himself and no one belongs to the other. I guess she was afraid of the daunting reality of her loneliness and desperately compensated for it. Because even if it was for a spare moment, she wanted to believe that everything was alright and life didn’t have to be a platter of shit handed to her by fate.

This impudent girl juggled between her own happiness and the desire to see others happy, at least with her. She liked to make people smile and laugh. What a farce! As soon as the show was over, everyone left their seats and went their way. She was left alone with her jester’s tears in the middle of a Shakespearean stage.

Un… Amber


“You spell your name wrong,” said the plump aged man with the protuding beer belly, who claimed to be my dead father’s eldest brother with such atrocious pride. “It should be spelled Unber (the sky). Otherwise Amber is like the reminiscent burning ashes.”

“That’s exactly what I want it to be.”

Four Letters


They say that love has the ability to consume you. I wonder who “they” are but nonetheless they too are victims of this… scintillation. I had to think of a word for that state you go into when it strikes you that you must accept the fact that this love is now a part of you.

Some call it a drug or a virus that is injected into your bloodstream and infects your whole body. I beg to differ. This metaphor implies the forceful penetration of a foreign venom. Love is not rape. If you find yourself associating words like one-sided and forceful or similar synonyms, I request you to remove “love” from the context. Desecrating love on the basis of poor choices or misfortunes that you had to endure is just a projection of you misplaced faith.

I write from a completely subjective perspective. I have associated love to all sorts of ideals; a spectrum from the ugliest to the most beautiful. I have come to the conclusion that love is equilibrium. It can be your strength and your weakness. It is liberation as well as possession. It is devotion as well as independence. It is rage as well as calm. It is intimacy and it is distance. It is loud and it is quiet. It is rough and it is soft. It is emotion along with aggression mixed with passion. It is intervention of thought and rationality. It is the action as well as the words that run parallel.

Love is all that you can feel, unconditionally. It causes wars when at peace yet it gives you peace when you’re at war. It is so much and yet it seems too little. Thus you keep going on and on yet it never runs out.

You can love so many things and so many beings at the same time, altogether and in completely different ways. Love is not constrained to spacio-temporal norms. Love is universal. Love is free. Love is infinite.

The Social Media Rant


So here’s the thing… You’ve got an internet connection. Everyone knows you have the ability to discover and explore websites and their material. There’s all sort of stuff out there! Especially hidden in the darker corners of internet. Yes I’m talking about all those photoshopped Nicholas Cage memes.  You find something cool or funny, you share it; it may be something funny, an article, news or a quotation with ambiguous references that you want your friends to know about. Totally makes sense.

But then statuses and tweets turned in 160 lettered rants full of exaggerated opinions which are usually copy-pasted or rephrased versions of something they read. I mean, you know shit’s gotten real when a Facebook status shows the “…see more” option. You don’t have that liberty on Twitter so Hashtags and emojis are abused upto the extent of atrocity, raping grammar in the process.Your-hastags-are-useless

Usually people do this for the sake of being a part of some mainstream trend or “social media approval”. This is no different from that awkward kid at school trying to convince the other kids that they’re cool. But goddammit the amount of people posting absolutely stupid stuff online, trying so hard to be philosophical or funny for the sake of social media popularity, is too damn high!

Yes, I contradict with my own words and I am posting this long-ass rant on my blog. I shan’t even defend myself because when I speak about others, I openly admit I am a part of the whole frenzy too. So what is my point? I need to let it out. Why? Because I can’t post much on my personal social media website…

Welcome to the other side of virtual popularity!

I am thankful to Mr. Zuckerberg for the platform he’s given us regardless it’s controversial policies (privacy settings; get your shit together!) The problem is, unless and until you change your name to something like “Angel Sweet” or “Attitude Pwince” (I actually saw someone with the name “Red Apple”) most probably people who know your name will find you and add you! (Ahh Liam Neeson, you great SoB) That’s basically the point of such social media websites, right? Realistically you cannot contact each and every person you know. So it’s convenient to just browse your newsfeed and see what they’re up to, right? WRONG!

Those check-ins are to remind you how deprived you are. It’s a way of rubbing it in your face that hey, I bet you can’t get yo’ ass even near this place/event, eh? Oh and thank you for also reminding us that not all of us are able to take a half-decent picture. If only a donation would be made for every pout, this world would be a better place! When it’s not a selfie, it’s a picture of whatever that person is eating. Bro, I’m broke. I can’t afford going to that popular fast food place every weekend. But I’m happy with my massar ki daal, achaar aur chaawal. For not every day is a shaljam gosht day! (Hashtag Say Yes To Bhindi!)

I know there are moments of pride and happiness are definitely worth sharing. They definitely make your friends and family happy. People might even be inspired by your narcissism. But sometimes we don’t realize what sort of impact, positive or negative, it may have on the other person. I’m talking to all them people getting engaged, married and having kids! I am as happy for you as I am sad for myself.

Here’s the thing, respected monsieur/mademoiselle… Everyone’s got their own life to deal with. Some people have more opportunities and moments to share. For others, this is a constant source of catharsis. But honey, you’re driving us crazy! Seriously! And I won’t even bother to comment on your post for the following reasons:

  1. People on social media are easily offended
  2. Probably someone from your friends list is randomly going to send me a friendship request
  3. Comment wars are directly proportional to the rise in one’s blood pressure

On one hand there’s plagiarism of other’s ideas, pictures and article, then there’s thirty feet of shit and then there’s pseudo-intellectuals/liberals with an identity crisis updating their statuses. Do not get me wrong, I really respect those people who genuinely vocalize their opinions on social media with good content but I’m sorry to say that posers are successfully drowning your voice with their arguments for the sake of arguments. Mostly the debates online are like ego-defensive bullies trying to punch people in the face via their wifi connection. We’re not arguing for an outcome or a solution, we’re arguing to prove that we’re superior and the other is inferior.

What about those people who can’t or choose not to be a part of the social media frenzy. If someone reserves their judgment does not mean they ignore things or they’re dumb. Economy of words does not entail scarcity of ideas. People need to know that it is okay not to be a part of mainstream trends and do what everyone else’s doing just for the sake of it! Just because one is unable to advertise himself on social media, does it make him any less talented? Maybe not. But it does become an automatic disadvantage as compared to those who use social media as a promotional tool.

I thought running a Facebook page for the stuff I write would be a good idea. It wasn’t. I wasn’t virtually apt enough to constantly post things and badger my friendslist with shameless promotion, even though in real life I am fairly good at social interactions. With the passage of time, I felt like I was writing for the sake of likes or virtual approval. We all want that self-esteem boost, right? Maybe. But unfortunately I couldn’t and I’m okay with that.

Sometimes, a page of a website or blog or an account on some social media website gets more recognition than the actual person. Often and a lot, these websites tend to gain popularity on the basis of the material they share instead of the institution or idea they represent. Platforms like tumblr, pintrest and 9gag are social media sites that particularly aim to serve the purpose of sharing the things you like. You’re able to share whatever the hell you want without your mom knowing. You can “fraandship” with people who share common interests ranging from a heart-warming story to extremely disturbing fan fiction, memes to tutorials, whatever floats your boat.

Unfortunately, we’re unable to draw a line. Is it that difficult to use a website for the purpose it was created? No it is not. I’ve got people from my family added on my personal social media accounts, senior colleagues/teachers, people I know from my social activities and events to old classfellows, school fellows and acquaintances etc. They all are NOT the same to me even though they’re all a part of one list called my friends list. I cannot share the same things with my colleagues that I share with my close friends. My social event buddies might know things my classmates don’t. I try to share things but believe it or not online messes permeate offline too. If I got a dollar for every time someone confronted me about my online presence in an offline situation, I’d definitely have gone back to Minnesota by now. But at least the website serves the purpose of being a unified platform where I can easily contact my “friends” whenever wanted or needed.

So, is virtual social media popularity actually worth the hype? Is a major online following worth creating a gulf between your online presence and your life offline? Or does online popularity equate offline popularity? Is it justified to lead two different lives? Is it healthy or hazardous? Don’t give me that clichéd answer that it depends on the user and how they use social media because they’re downright boring.