Pause and breathe

We all make bad choices in life, it’s a part of the entire growing up process.

My life, for one, is a quagmire of bad choices and indecision, mostly about the people I have included/excluded from it. The thing is, it’s a vicious circle, every relationship that ends badly goes sour and leaves behind a stench one can’t easily get rid of. By now I should have learnt, and stopped making bad choices, but I still haven’t. And it’s going to be a while till I actually learn, pick up the pieces in elan and move on.

Sometimes I feel appalled by people’s behavior and often mine doesn’t merit much celebration either. Mistakes are meant to be made and with every one thing that goes wrong, something else goes right. But what I really really feel upset about is all the regret that I am filled with. To hell with regrets, really. What could have been if I had done this differently and all that jazz.

Have I messed up? Yes. So, who doesn’t? I’m tired of feeling sorry for myself and berating myself. Starting now I will stop analyzing myself so much. Life is meant to be lived spontaneously, and with love. But I’ve realized it’s difficult to love another person when one has little love for one self. How do people profess endless love for one another when they have such little concern for their own being?

I will stop wallowing in self doubt and self pity…if I chose to do something a certain way it’s because it was best for me. Maybe it was the wrong decision, maybe not. But can I please be allowed the comfort of knowing that at least I made a choice? Instead of letting it wait around on its ass endlessly, amounting to absolutely nothing.

Ennui

Bhishon bhaabe missing, not in any specific order:

-Shyamol’s doodh cha

-Socks’ stupid face

-Amlan da’s 10.20 classes

-WIP story reading sessions

-phuchka, aloo roll, luchi chicken

-the entire doggie gang

-sunshine mornings

How I miss my college days, can’t believe it has been two whole years since I stepped out of JU, starry eyed and content. Back then I was in a crazy hurry to become an adult, but now I want to crawl right back into JU’s comfortable embrace and curl up happily.

Early 20s was full of happiness and so much love that my cup literally runneth over. Life is too competitive now and complicated, emotions are always running high. This ennui, just can’t shake it off. The heart is torn between believing in the self and chasing dreams that are not really dreams to begin with. This ebb and flow of life, what can one do but surrender?

Delete after reading

Now that I’m out of college (and it’s been two long and tedious years) I’m craving books more than ever. In my five years at JU, my teachers, some of my classmates, and seniors had introduced me to the kind of literature, I knew would stay with me for a while. My existing book collection was mostly built in those five years when I bought books furiously and piled them in various heaps on the old book case, across the floor, or stuffed into random corners of the room. Overtime, some of them have acquired a yellowish tint, some have been given away and some have found its way to my mother’s book shelf. Now almost every other month books get added, most of them bought from online stores at subsidized rates. Lately, in my head I’ve been romanticizing my college days a lot, particularly a book sale I was very fond of. Organized by a popular library in Kolkata, it was the stuff my early 20’s dreams were made of. My friends and I made a grand outing of it, buying second hand books from a small tiny room. The whole thing always happened so fast that someone always inevitably got hold of the book I wanted. I had to plead till that person gave in and handed the book over, mostly not. Then my friends and I would go over the loot, we’d acquire some ten books for a meager sum of Rs. 500-600…some not such great buys, but some very rare and treasured finds.

All this is a thing of the past. This year I couldn’t even manage to go to the Kolkata Book Fair because it was pitch week. If anyone told me this four years back I’d laugh on their face for using work as an excuse not to go to book fair. Anyway, life gets less romantic as one grows up. Paying taxes and covering health insurance money becomes more important than sitting in a corner doing absolutely nothing. God forbid you are sitting and doing nothing, you’ve had it.

I have managed to buy a Kindle and this fact saddens me greatly. A Kindle is not me, it’s too technologically advanced for me and no matter what anyone says, the reading experience isn’t that great shakes. However, it is a much cheaper option for those who want to read expensive books but cannot afford to. Also, from the practical point of view, the Kindle is so light it’s almost non-existent. This is a big thing for me because I’m a very sloppy packer when it comes to trips. I always have to buy another bag while returning from some new place, any new place, so mostly my books tend to bulge out of the backpack after I’ve stuffed it in with much force (again not the best way to treat books).

So far I’ve made good use of the device:

Wyrd Sisters – Terry Pratchett

The Light Fantastic – Terry Pratchett

The Myth of Sisyphus – Albert Camus

The Man In the High Castle – Philip K. Dick

The Edible Woman – Margaret Atwood

SF and the Human Imagination – Margaret Atwood

Madaddam Trilogy – Margaret Atwood

The Blind Assasin – Margaret Atwood

Second Sex – Simone de Beauvoir

I Am An Emotional Creature – Eve Ensler

Kitchen – Banana Yoshimoto

The Nimrod Flipout – Etgar Keret

The Ruined Map – Kobo Abe

A Quiet Life – Kenzabure Oe

Franny and Zooey – J.D. Salinger

As She Climbed Across the Table – Jonathan Lethem

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell – Susanna Clarke

I think I managed to thoroughly read most of the books (that I have struck out) in a reasonable span of time, despite the pitch weeks, bitch weeks.

Also, the creepy bit about an e-book reader is that you can delete a book after reading it to create space for more books. I find this act to be almost disturbing. It’s somewhat reminiscent, in my imagination, of the act of burning books to keep them away from the masses. Or not. Although, even the most basic Kindle can store up to 3000 books so I’m not deleting a single one.

Post lunch

The sound of a thud reverberated against the wall and sent an icy chill down her back. She stood calmly, observing him from a distance. The ground beneath her feet was uncertain and wobbly; any move now from her end would have to be carried out meticulously so as not to attract his attention. In a deft agile motion she maneuvered herself away from his sight, slowly at first, then in quick sloppy movements. Her heart stopped as she heard his footsteps advance closer. She knew this was it, a moment in time which would change her world and turn it upside down. As she looked around the room, she weighed her options calmly. The wind blew lazily from a sleepy overhead fan which peered back at her half consolingly. Fight or flight were the only two options available and she knew better than to fight him. Of course she could just make a dash for it but he was too close now and her sense of calm morphed into a whirl of chaos when he held up the sharp object in his hand. But she wasn’t going to let him win without putting up a fight first. It’s gone on way too long, she told herself angrily and rose up to run past him in a frenzy. He struck her angrily first as she clutched at the nearby table and fell to the floor. Dizzy and half conscious, she felt him bending over her with a smug expression on his face. He hit her hard again as she felt the life drain out of herself drop by drop, then he struck one last time with more force than she could take. Darkness descended as her blood oozed out on the marble white floor creating a bright red mess.

*

He could feel his blood rush to his face as he hit her angrily. The whole business was more violent than he could have possibly imagined. This sudden gory act of hatred made him queasy and uncomfortable. He wasn’t sure what had overcome him and now he wished he had given that steak during lunch a miss. He opened the window to let in more air, picked up her lifeless body swiftly and flung it out with ease. As he mopped the small puddle of blood on the floor, he muttered to himself coarsely, “stupid, stupid fly”.