Tuesday, 22 May 2007


Wisps of smoke are hard to catch.
They glimer in the dark.
They tantalise.
Curling strokes
That slip back into the realm of thought.

Sunday, 20 May 2007

Long Live!

8 out of 10 people in the Cool* People list find their names on the list only because they Burned Out, not Faded Away.

I could invoke poster-boy for irrefutable iconic falls and tragic loss of Cool, Wacko Jacko and no more, and comfortably rest my case.
I could say Britney. But that would be overkill.

But think Elvis. If he hadn’t … you know … he’d have been old and fat and doped and selling himself silly while on the fast track to bankruptcy. Now he gets to be God, the King and the second richest dead person.
Thank the heavens that we didn’t have to see the richest dead person become anything but the Cobain persona he left behind.
Che. He’d be like Castro. Not a symbol of revolution and (personally, I would say, misplaced) icon for every rebel yell, but a power-hungry, dictatorial communist who’s good only for getting the US’ goat.
Gandhi even. So he went when he was old. But he went before he turned into a politician and everything the word implies, and when we still liked him enough to make him father of the nation and martyr his name forevermore.
And if the Blonde that Gentlemen Prefer and stayed around for a little longer, the world would have soon forgotten all its fantasies about flying white dresses and remembered a sorry prescription pills addict.
Some never had any chance but to fall authoritatively into legend.
James Dean was always driving too fast; Jim Morrison was too deep into Rock and Roll to ever be anything else….
(Makes me wonder how Axl Rose is still around?!?)

My palm tells me I have an especially long lifespan. So it rankled a little that I, by my own definition, have little chance at Cool. But now, I and my bucket of poporn have settled into our front row seat.
I'll watch them come and go in blazes of glory. Becaue, it’s not about quitting when you’re winning or about retiring gracefully. It’s about being fortune’s favourite and the handful that get there.

I can live with that.

Note: For the 2 out of 10 exception, there’s a Keith Richards (!!!) and a Hugh Hefner (I mean, this guy has a rabbit named after him!), attitude firmly tongue in cheek and eccentricity allowed as genius.

* I’d define this as institutional, revolutionary, with cult like following, not necessarily indicating my personal taste.

Friday, 11 May 2007

The Appointment That Never Was

Stopped time slowly ticks
A leaky tap's water drips -
The phone still didn't ring.


It's consoling. That even if the world ends today, somewhere is The King in a pink spaceship to represent the human race.
We should however at this juncture hope that nobody else Randomly picks up Dent's (shall we say) ticket to travel first class.

Saturday, 5 May 2007

The Big G

One day, somebody in an evidently inebriated state decided to compliment my mother on her ginger juice. Since then, what started out as a culinary experiment has morphed into an exhaustive annual exercise comparable only to her efforts at making tomato ketchup.
I’ve tried reasoning with her that ginger is best left in the medicine cupboard, and even then, rarely (if ever) used, but to no avail.

This time, the ginger juice monster in her lay latent for a good twelve months, when it burst forth in all vengeance demanding a couple of extra hands to do the very dirty work for her, whence my forced volunteering of labour and kind.

I should have left home when she came armed with a two-foot tall sac packed with various sized and shaped stems of the particular underground variety in question. But I didn’t and it was worse than I feared.

My first task was to clean the wretched stem-vegetable. Ever cleaned mud off a bucket full of tangled roots in numbing cold water and then waited the rest of the day to be able to feel your fingers again, only to be told you did it all wrong in the first place?

My further services were required to grate the lot of ginger. I suppose there was a certain sadistic pleasure to be got out of shredding the g while continually mentioning the absolute irreverence I held for it. Until it avenged itself by making my eyes water and murdering a couple of hundred olfactory epithelial cells.

I weathered the dense reek that covered every inch of my house and person for three days, as the elaborate process of making the juice unravelled. The golden brown liquid menacingly simmered in a huge (what can only be called a) cauldron. (Who had to scamper up the atta to bring it down?)

But my contributions weren’t yet complete. I also had the unenviable job of scooping out gooey goo left over after the preparation and dunking it dollop by slow, messy dollop into the home’s compost pit, uninvited, into the humble abode of a rat family and the roaches. The stains still haven't left my nails.

I realise what a thankless job it is, when I am further assigned to fill the (by now) ready juice into ten bottles, all waiting for me in a line. Given the responsibility, I spill not a drop, working with immense precision despite a wonky ladle. Mum waits till bottle no. 10 is full to taste a bit of the concoction and realises it needs “some more lime.” Out she pours all ten bottles worth back into the cauldron to repair the apparent damage. I’m not pleased. I pour the improved product back in, this time rather ferociously, spilling about a bottle’s worth, and still finding that we now have enough to fill twelve bottles.

So now I’m sticky and no amount of soap can rid me of the ginger stink on me.

Mum forced some g juice down my protesting throat. I know I made a face to crack mirrors and informed her that it was no less foul than last year’s.
“It’s good for colds,” she said in an attempt at justification.
“But I don’t have a cold.” Just in case she hadn’t noticed.
“And you never will.”

Honestly Mum, I’ll take my chances with the cold.


Crisp breakfast bread crust crumbled onto his neatly pressed chocolate-striped shirt and tumbled onto his limited edition style 0N5-sepia trousers. Carelessly flicked onto the mahogany and teak custom side table they were done paying for. ("It looks so elegant when burnt ochre evening light fills the room," she said.) Blown onto the pale terracotta floor till they landed like floating dust spots beside nearly invisible coffee stains on the earthy carpet….

Who was he kidding. The bread was burnt, and it was all just brown and that’s all he was. Brown. What was ever good enough to be a colour.


I'll try.

Really hard.

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