Saturday, September 22, 2012

Of You, Band Baaja Baaraat, Joseph Anton, Reading People and Jab Tak Hai Jaan..

Ok..long time no see..It's been a long roller coaster of a week. So many things happened during the week..I don't know from where to begin. Usually I have nothing to write but for this week I have about ten things to write..I will write only some of them today and save the others for next week. 

Finally after more than a month, I got a chance to speak to you. The first sentence you said to me was that you miss me so much. I was so happy when you told this to me ya. You said so many things about me. I cannot tell you how much I miss speaking to you ya. I was so happy when you told me that you have found someone again. I know these were some tough and lonely months for you but you finally found love again. And you wanted to share this with me. I know you would look perfect with anybody ya but I am really happy for you. I was actually seeing the pictures of your special person and it is true what you both make a cute couple :) But you know as I was so happy for you, I felt a bit sad for myself..slightly jealous as well.. I know I am so stupid but what do I do no? I hate myself for this but whenever I speak to you I start welling up. It isn't that I intentionally do it but since I can tell you anything, all the things which I keep to myself start coming out. I can lose myself in  front of you but with others I have this guard around me. I am really sorry for that but what do I do? Sometimes it feels really lonely ya.. You always keep on saying things about me..That is enough for me..what else can I expect? I don't even have a right to expect anything. Thank you... and ya I really wish you a life time of happiness...Please don't forget me and thora sa miss karte rehna..

And you know this week after I saw the amazing trailer of Jab Tak Hai Jaan, I was reminded of my favorite scene from Band Baaja Baraat. I love the scene where Shruti pretends that she has no feelings for  Bittoo.  Especially the point when Shruti sees herself in the mirror. It is as if she is watching this whole new Shruti and her emotions in the mirror. And then she talks and consoles herself addressing her own self in third person. It again reflects this new Shruti which she never thought could be in her. Perhaps that is why they have kept this mirror in front of her during the whole scene to show different person. It is a fabulous scene and Anushkha is terrific in it. And you know, I read this short story The Mirror by Murakami. It is such a thought provoking story and it says, "The most frightening thing in the world is our own self." Isn't it actually true? 

I liked Band Baaja Baaraat just because of Shruti. As a character Shruti behaved slightly irrationally when her love wasn't reciprocated which is very natural but then she became more pragmatic and graceful. She learnt to accept some not take things seriously. At one point in the film, she says to Bittoo that she fell in love with him but he didn't.. so what's the big deal? Why is he making a fuss out of it. As they said "jiske saath vyapaar karo usse kabhi na pyaar karo." The more she runs after him, the more she will get hurt herself. Learn to live with it no?.. Do watch this scene here. 

Taking of addressing in third person, Salma Rushdie's autobiographical Joseph Anton is out this week. To me, he is God. I started to love books because of two authors - Salman Rushdie and Jane Austen. In the book, Rushdie talks about his years when he was living in hiding due to a fatwa against him for writing The Satanic Verses. During those years, he had taken this alias Joseph Anton after two  of his favorite authors Jospeh Conrad and Anton Chekov. As Salil Tripathi writes in the Mint, He chose Joseph Anton, after Conrad and Chekhov. Conrad, because in The Nigger of the Narcissus, a sick seaman called James Wait is about to make a difficult voyage, and another seafarer asks him why, and Wait says, “I must live before I die, mustn’t I?” And Chekhov, because he was “the master of loneliness and melancholy, of the beauty of an old world destroyed, like the trees in a cherry orchard, by the brutality of the new; Chekhov, whose Three Sisters believed that real life was elsewhere and yearned eternally for a Moscow to which they could not return.” 

Incidentally, Rushdie addresses himself all the while in third person in the entire book. He says addressing himself in third person made him more objective. As Salil Tripathi continues, 

Rushdie today is not the Rushdie of 1988; he wants to look back at the past with the objectivity distance brings, observing his younger self, commenting on his decisions grand and small, and reflecting on his opinions, describing the actions he took—brave at times, mean at some others. As a literary device, it works.

Do read Salil Tripathi's and Indrajit Hazra's delightful reviews of the book here. 

Think of what the poet Baal said in The Satanic Verses: “A poet’s work: to name the unnameable, to point at frauds, to take sides, start arguments, shape the world and stop it from going to sleep.”

How can someone write so beautifully? I am amazed by people's creativity. I have to read it soon. I have to watch Midnight's Children too.

I was so irritated at some things. Some people in my class had formed a perception about some things which irritated me so much. This is what I don't like. At one point, they say American culture respects individualism and then they pass too many judgements about the way certain people are? Isn't it a dichotomy?

Yesterday, we had a cross cultural training session only for the international students in our class. There was this amazing person, Judy Shen-Filerman, who is an MBA from Harvard and runs a cross cultural training firm. She was called to teach some American cultural traits to international students and to tell us that how difficult and different it is to find a job here if you are an international student. It is all networking which is very different from where we come from. She told us to prepare a fifteen-thirty second pitch that we need to say during career fairs to potential employers. She then gave a feedback to each of us on how to improve the pitch. People wrote some great ones talking about their achievements and all. One guy said he was the first employee to be given the power of signature in his company. I have nothing to sell honestly and  I wrote a very simple one. And you know she called it the best in the class. After getting some not so good feedback in mock interviews earlier in the week (one feedback I got was to improve personal grooming..huh?!?!?!), this actually felt good. I admit I am a terrible interviewee and I know how much problems I will face here :{ But what she said made my day. And in the end when she was about to leave, she specially came up to me and said that she sees a writer in me. And then she said, "you noticed that I did not go to anybody. But I have to come up to you especially. I want to say to you that I can see that you are a talented person just by the way you wrote but one advise I will give to you is speak a bit more. And you have a great smile."  I really don't know why she said to me to speak more. There were people who spoke nothing at all. I spoke and asked a few questions as well during the session  but it was as if she knew me from before that I don't speak much. Isn't it amazing how some people can read others in one meeting and for some it takes a lifetime? And then she asked my name and told me to send her a mail and to be in touch. I felt so thankful to her for this. Sometimes I really wonder if I am that transparent? Am I that bad kya? Mere saath sab theek ho jayega na? After some not so good things that I heard this week, this felt good. Thank you so much Judy. 

I cannot wait for Jab Tak Hai Jaan. As Anupama Chopra tweeted, "I'm a total sucker for pretty people in love and all things Yash Chopra so can't wait to see Jab Tak Hain Jaan!" I couldn't agree more. It is the same with me. I love 'love triangles'. Howsoever cheesy the poem be, Gulzar and Rehman are a cracker of a combination. The English translation of the poem is here. There is so much hype that people are writing articles on the possible plots for the same: 

Got bored no? I wrote about five things but I have another five more to write. I am going to Indianapolis the coming week. Let's see how it turns out. I will meet P as well. I hope I remember what all I want to write.

Dialogue of the Day:
तेरा हाथ से हाथ छोड़ना
तेरा सायों से रुख मोड़ना
तेरा पलट के फिर न देखना
नहीं माफ़ करूँगा मैं
जब तक है जान, जब तक है जान
 - Jab Tak Hai Jaan

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