Saturday, December 24, 2005

Tagging on X'mas Eve

This Christmas and New Year’s, I have decided to be selfless. As noble as this aspiration is, I’m not surprised that my dimwitted cousins didn’t understand.

‘I’ll be selfless,’ I say.

‘What does that mean?’, cousin A asks.

‘She’ll be less of herself,’ cousin B replies.

Ha ha ha and all that nonsense.

Anyway, so I have decided to be selfless. An important step in being selfless is to stop wanting to be right all the time. And what helps stop this is remembering the times we were wrong – and so happy for being proven that way.

So, this Christmas, this post, I shall make a list of 5 things or people or situations or beliefs I was wrong about and why my life is more enriched for not being right. At the end of my list, I shall tag a few people who I’d like to list 5 things they have been wrong about and therefore happier. Now, because I have typhoid and a lot of time on my hands, I’ll just put chits with people’s names in a pencil box and pull them out with my eyes closed.

But more about that later. Here is my list about the things I’ve been proven wrong about:

1. Salman Rushdie

For the longest time, I believed Rushdie to be an over-rated author. A good publicist and a sensationalist plot and that really was what there was to him. And then I read ‘Ground Beneath Her Feet’. It was published around the same time as ‘An Equal Music’ by Vikram Seth and was sort of ‘panned’, if one can say that about a book. That got me curious about the novel and I read it.

I really need another language to convey how highly I think of him now but I’ll do my best in English.

The man has used phrases like ‘cathedrals of sound’; he has used words such as ‘onliest’ when really only ‘onliest’ would do. He’s described the role of a photographer as someone who must capture ‘the last kiss before parting and the last piss before starting.’

Here’s how he writes about the media coverage of a popstar’s (Vina Apsara) death: ‘But by then Vina was already passing into myth, becoming a vessel into which any moron could pour his stupidities, or let us say a mirror of the culture, and we can best understand the nature of this culture if we say that it found its truest mirror in a corpse.’

Here’s what he says about why we care so much for music. ‘…Maybe we are just creatures in search of exaltation. We don’t have much of it. Our lives are not what we deserve; they are, let us agree, in many painful ways deficient. Song turns them into something else. Song shows us a world that is worthy of our yearning, it shows us our selves as they might be, if we were worthy of the world.’

This book must be meticulously committed to memory. And this author, in my mind, comes closest to adulation after Alex Haley.

2. School of Rock

I went for this movie with M.M. He is the ONLY person in this world who would never ask me which film we were going for. This is despite me taking him for movies such as Ring 2 (awful – that’s how people died, not because of some tape or ghost), Anita and me (tedious), Catch me if you can (too slow).

So when we got to Sterling and found that we could only go for ‘School of Rock’, I was disappointed. I hadn’t even heard of the film before and I hear of all the films (‘Now Showing’ as well as ‘Forthcoming Attractions’ with show timings).

Well, as it turned out, this movie is definitely one of the cutest, funniest films that I have seen.

Jack Black teaching a little girl how to scowl and look like a rock star is…You want to pinch his cheeks tight!

3. Mocha

Ah! If ever I forget why it is important to make mistakes, my beloved Mocha will remind me that it’s beautiful to err. When I first saw it on Hill Road, I thought it was for the yuppie wannabe crowd with nothing meritorious about the food and drinks. But, how wrong was I!

It’s a lovely place where you can relax (in fact, try and feel agitated there) with interesting art books (in some outlets) and some lovely jewel-colored lamps. I wonder why I like it so, but then again, I have the rest of a lovely life to find that out.

4. Chocolate

I don’t like chocolate at all and therefore I didn’t think I’d like the ‘Lava Lava’ dessert at Mocha.

Lava Lava is when the palate does the waltz on tasting cocoa. You take a spoon of that lush, brown, glistening dessert and put it into your mouth.

And then, perhaps you’ll quote Pablo Neruda, ‘To hear the immense night, more immense without her. And the poem falls to the soul as dew to grass.

You’ll probably, shut your eyes in rapture and exclaim in college-like fashion: ‘Orgasmic!’

Or you’ll simply say, ‘Mmm..’

Whatever you do, you’d be right on the money.

5. Love me ‘this’ way

I have had the good fortune of knowing several special people. These people are special even without a frame of reference, but more impossibly, they are special despite my notions of what I wanted them to be.

The past year, I have thought of how I have wronged people. And I realize that I’ve wronged them by not understanding them. I didn’t understand when someone waited for a year before he told me I was special to him or when someone would keep waiting in the rain when I had slammed the door on his face or when someone left me the last bit of cake, in case I ever wanted it, which I eventually would throw away carelessly

I hope, that now, today, and foreverafter, I understand for good that silly truism that did the round as email forwards: ‘Just because someone doesn’t love you the way you want them to, it doesn’t mean they don’t love you with all they’ve got.’

I now tag the following people:

Rbecause you have an opinion on an opinion about another opinion. Your list would be mucho interesting. I’m biting my nails already!

J, PuneShe has been my accomplice in crime, mainly gluttony. Thanks for everything, pal!

AnumitaBecause you were sweet enough to volunteer to visit me, and not with the hidden agenda of checking out if I was really sick. Thank you. Hmmph to cousin!

MM Since you hate being proven wrong. He he! And for being really the easiest movie companion a person could ask for. Thanks!

Remember, the list must be things you have been pleasantly proven wrong about.

And to everybody else, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Hope your lists get longer and longer! Tight hugs to all!


Hyde said...

I see you never went away. :-)

madhavan said...

sheesh, you are a really nice person. how disappointing. all that irony of previous posts were giving me a completely different picture.

my take on rushdie is of a genius who's exhausted the limits of his style. his books will be brilliant but they are all shadows of midnight's children. no epic expected from him in the autumn of his life.

if you haven't picked up the Impressionist by Hari Kunzru, try and have a go at it. Another piece of genius. Phenomenal. Very good for the typhoid afflicted.

New Dik On The Blog said...

I always believed I wasn't such a nice person !

Anonymous said...

ah! now this is a difficult one. and you know how i am never wrong [or, always right :)]. this will take me some time. i'll need to sit and ponder, reflect some. hmmm...

~J :)

Mukta said...

Hi Hyde,

Yes, you see...:-)

Hello madhavan,

I don't understand what you say when it isn't in a rhyme (he he!). I hardly think I'm a nice person. All the people listed will vouch for that. :-)

Well, you know, not much was expected after Austen after Pride and Prejudice but some say her 'Persuasion' (last novel) is her most mature work. Actually, I haven't read Midnight's children. (Have lost all three copies that I've bought.)So perhaps my frame of reference wasn't much. I had tried reading through Moor's Last Sigh many times though but...

Shall definitely read the Impressionist now. Thanks!

Hi new,

To thine own self be true, I guess. :-)


Good to hear from you! You being never wrong or always right - okay, see....I know NO such thing. he he! But I'd really love to read your list. Do let me know when you are through! :-)

Hyde said...

Oh, is that all? I thought you would give a long explanation as to why you never went away! ;-)

Mukta said...

Hi Hyde,

A long explanation, eh? Am so sorry I'm disappointing you by sticking around. he he! It's like, after a tiff, I tell someone, 'I'm leaving you and never coming back!' And the person replies - 'Promise?'

he he!

Hyde said...

Well, I am glad you didn't. But I do wish I knew about it earlier.

ineffably_dumb at yahoo said...

nice people are boring.

Anonymous said...


nice people are not boring. i am really nice, and i am not boring. :)


Rabin said...

thanks for my first tag!! Sorry i couldn't go beyond one.

Mukta said...

Hi Hyde,

Hmm, you have a point there. Should have kept you in the loop.

Hey ineffably underscore dumb,

When you think about it, interesting people are so over-rated, na?

Hey J,

You - nice? Ahem! Yes, yes. (she keeps her fingers crossed behind her back. he he!)

Hi R,

I hope that wasn't because of the shock of being tagged! :-) Never mind. What was important was the sentiment not the number of items. :-)

Anonymous said...

missing ur posts and maybe missin u 2 ... come back and post ...

Mukta said...

Hi Neo,

Thank you! But come back from where? Am right here, although you do give me some food for thought - if I died, how would anyone reading my blog know that I'm dead? Hmm...maybe it's not important. he he!

By the way, do I know you? Because 'missing your posts' I could understand, but 'maybe missing you too'...that I'm not too sure. Or are you that person I met outside German bakery who i owe ten bucks to? If you are, thanks a ton for that day and I'll probably be at the German bakery sometime next week. Mail me. Have a great New Year!

And if you're not that person then...:-) do tell.