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Archive for November, 2013

Love this man, love the poem

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I learn belly dancing, but shimmy is where I stop. I am okay with the hip movements, I am even okay with the fact that it is infact nothing but a dance of seduction. But ask me to shimmy in public? I cannot shake what my mama gave me, its not that I cannot, I just don’t want to.

And Twerking? moving your back muscles to “pop it” to the latest club music in the club, and dropping “it” while travelling from one leg to another? uhh but no thank you.  I may come across as a prude, and you may say that I do not have “game”. But in the world where we have salsa and samba, why do we need to grind or twerk. To save my face in the face of the curent times, I do love “dirty dancing” as it is sensual, it is still okay with two people involved in it. And I would still want to reserve it for the bedroom or a private moment.

But Grinding? When I was in college, it became an absolute norm to grind, I am not saying I am not guilty, but it is so dirty. Sometimes I would stand in sidelines and watch all these people, and as the music played, without any sense of the song or whatever all they continued to do was “grind” “motorboot” on each other. I had guy friends and girlfriends wink at me and smile from the back of someone who was, yes, grinding on them. All you have to do is stand behind them, and ocassionally touch or squeeze some parts of them. It is just really demeaning. I will never say, I have never done it. But it is wholly disgusting. It is like you are in the bedrooms of people and watching them have sex with clothes on. And I have had that feeling one too many times while watching people. No, I don’t judge them for doing it, as it is really group think. It has really made it hard for some of us, who are actual ambiverts and even sometimes extroverts to fully participate in a club, because you can’t really salsa in the middle of the dance floor where everyone else is grinding on top of each other.  Well, actually you can. Nobody really stops anyone. But it is annoying to find a guy you are initially attracted to, grab you by your hips, turn you around and basically peg you from behind. At any point in a dance, it is still unacceptable and disgusting. 

Clubbing puts this pressure to not only talk to unwanted people, but actually be grabbed and turned around-and this is considered okay?!?, or even worse get grinded on by a complete stranger. Somebody who thinks its just..uh Idk okay to cup your breasts and press a hard on to your butt. What if I just liked loud music and drinks? I sound as if I am new to all this, but no, I am no wallflower. But it is not cray until someone else points it out. Or you take a step back and go like, hold on what am I doing, what is everyone else doing. How am I allowing men to put their faces in my cleavage and squeezing a butt check, and instead of pushing them and saying “wtf man, whats wrong with you” I am standing their giggling but saying “no” in a shrilly loud voice. How can I be alrite with seeing them next day around on campus and waving at them like they did not do anything inappropriate the weekend before? Why? Just because it is “party culture” and I am at the party. So it automatically makes me an extrovert wild girl who loves to party? I do love to party, take me anywhere around the globe, I can have a chill time with any group of people, but I have my respect when I do that, and I am unwilling to have what they have deemed okay in the party scene.

Women laying down on the ping pong table letting men take body shots, and being asked to do the same? I am a human, you bitch! I am not some subpar animal that will do as you please. How is it even okay for educated men to make comments like “flash me” sometimes even to their own friends, how about I get your life fracked up and call up your girlfriend and momma? 

We have made women a prop at the parties, we have sold our boys the dream, that study hard, work hard, make money and women will come. Women(and plural) have become the end result, the reward you get yourself. The jock culture promotes it, and then we wonder why do athletes rape. Uhh huh because they feel entitled, because its been embedded in them that women is their reward. That zar zoru and zameen are all man’s properties. The 21st century man would argue against it, but is he not going thru facebook picture after facebook picture comparing one girl to the other. Was he not previously trying to live up to the dream of a white woman with blonde hair, because he was absolutely sold to the idea that if he has that, he is “winning”. Ofcourse I am not talking about everyone. There are some great good men out there too, and I know a lot of them. But right now I am trying to understand this. And I am also not saying women won’t and don’t throw themselves on “eligible bachelors”, yes it is what it is. But it is just scary when your best friend just had a baby girl, and you think of the world she will grow up in.

I don’t disdain the club culture, it is fun, but as they say it takes two to tango. So it should take two to dance to any beat. 

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Mad Men, lead me to this song by The Crystals. Obviously at the time too this song received much criticism-as a lot of people said it promoted domestic violence. But idk how, but I just get it. Then we have the EL James who wrote a whole series, might I add bestselling series, centered around an intern, a businessman and BDSM. And there is more, our literature is full of it, books have a dark sexuality to them. Sydney Sheldon was doing it to us back in middle school. Enhancing and affecting our sexuality, by the rape scenes on television and the tabooed, the literature. All of it. 

So what is it about us humans wanting to be punished/smacked/chocked/scratched and countless verbs from our significant others? It all boils down to the “heat” I want you so much that I would want to risk raping you, if I had to get you on my bed and in my clutches. Or like in the song, I will smack you because you were untrue, but it felt like a kiss to the one who is untrue because in a morbid way, the one who is smacking is hurt, and vulnerable at their hands and their love. He takes her in his arms. 

If it affects you, react damnit.

I refrained from sexual activity as a high school student because the sweet guy I was somewhat seeing would have been horrified had I asked him to force himself on me. Had I manipulated him into somehow forcing himself on me, the guy would have probably shot himself the next day. The whole point became resisting and teasing to the point where someone looses their control, but you can’t just do that on anyone. Chick flicks are promoting love with daisies all over the place, and I do not say it is not great to make love like that. But it is also nice to switch things. My first real boyfriend was also a good feminist guy, who got sadism and masochism but not domination and submission. To him, it was something he just couldn’t do. I felt like a complete freak around someone like that. Walking around, I would feel like an outcast, because I wasn’t having the kind of fun I wanted. The average college hookups weren’t meant for me, because a college boy’s idea of a hookup is drunk sex. He wastes his energy too much at the party and little does he save it for the after-party. It was high school all over again. Sexually, I have always felt like an outsider. I have had friends wonder out loud at me, as why I do not regularly date. I cannot confess to my girlfriends who are just happy ticking of kamasutra positions that, this is how I like my sex. I cannot turn a guy down, and tell him it is because I know he cannot match my sexual prowess. Like gay people have a so called gaydar, wherein they can scan out gay men in a crowd, I can too scan out the sissies and ask them to stop trying. But while it is okay for a guy to come out and say, hey I am gay, it is still inappropriate to bring up D&S and S&M as your sexual identifiers. 

Yet, back to the crystal’s He hit me, and it felt like a kiss. Although morbid in that Amy Winehouse kind of a way, it is a prevalent subculture that you just cannot ignore. As most days, I feel like a queer, which I am not. This is actually perfectly normal, and a rape fantasy (WITH CONSENT) is infact the most common fantasy. 

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1. Camp naked for one night, at the complete mercy of nature, preferably with 10.

2. Backpack Europe

3. Learn how to code, because something tells me code will outlast cursive

4. Make that big commitment and stick with it for life, preferably on my back. I am talking about a tattoo >.< 

5. Party in NZ 

6. Write that damn book, because life is short

7. Do P90X, because I have been putting this off since the last three years

8. Grow my locks as long as I can, and then donate them FTK and get me a beautiful bob

9. Turn non-vegetarian, not for a meal, or a few days but for good. I need fish, and lean meat. 

10. Find love, yes, have my heart at complete mercy of another human being, and as soon as I find it, get a nipple pierced

11. Experience Mecca and the Vatican city

12. Start investing, for real

13. Take up a cause, and actually do some legwork on it

14. Read a 100 new books, don’t stick to one genre. That’s like a third of a book per week for the next five years. Attainable.  

15. Learn a new sport

 

 

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Child Abuse

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I was recently reading a story on how Dean Tripple had drawn something that is so hard to talk about. And it is astounding to me how many kids are molested/raped/abused. Who are these monsters I would ask myself at first? How can you do that to a little child? What makes it okay for an adult full grown man or woman to do this to little kids?

It really goes thru the roof for me when I see little kids around myself, thats when your heart really starts pumping rage. Having a particular cousin who is some 17 years younger than I am, who I particularly love, I would cut up the groin of the man who even looked at her such. But more than anything, we have to create an environment at home that is a “safe zone” a safe zone where a kid can come and confess or tell her mother or me all her secrets. No kid, should be lead to believe that they can handle this all by themselves. 

Having known a close friend, who despite the most protected environment, as a kid, was regularly “touched” by one of her servants. Then as the years passed by, she told herself that she liked it. An 8 year old, is being molested and to cope up with it the grown up 18 year old is telling herself that she kind of liked it. “I like it when my friends make bad decisions in life, it is good, everyone should get screwed over, it makes me happy” I was aghast when I heard that coming from my supposed best friend, I asked her if she really meant it, and she confirmed.

See, it is all so easy for parents to not even know whats going on with their kids, they too are living their lives, day-in and day-out, but please don’t make kids if you can’t protect their fragile lives. My guardians guarded me too much, resultant I ended up creating two parallel lives for myself. As I am older, and I hear about all these child molestation stories, I thank them everyday for ensuring my safety, but I was an overprotected kid. In essence, they don’t even know who I really am. I am one person at home, and a completely different person outside. I have never gotten a boyfriend or even the majority of my friends home. I pick and choose who my parents think I am associated with, because being their first born they were always too concerned for my safety.

But no one can move around with our children 24/7 and even beyond their adolescence, but in their formative years we need to empower them, for life. We need to be able to teach them to be comfortable and be able to merg their outside and inside home life at some point atleast. A struggle that I continue to face myself. But more importantly we cannot under-protect them. We need to teach them the difference between an okay touch and a bad touch. We need to tell them, that if they came back to us with a rape story or a molestation story we won’t hold them responsible, or we have to make sure that we don’t give the “I don’t want to know about that” vibe. 

One of my aunts confessed that as a child she was molested by one of her older cousins, the other one confessed that she was almost raped in college. Thing is my grandparents are and were educated folks, yet they made it so hard for their own kids to come and tell them these things. Women in general have a tendency to share and talk about it, if not today then somewhere down the line, but as men are wired in some societies, it is made even harder for them to break down infront of anyone. My grandfather found it particularly offensive when a worker in a warehouse told him the owner had something about his granddaughter’s(mine) arse. He got offended to the point that he refused to take me to work the next day. I argued that getting catcalled is a very normal routine in a girl’s/woman’s life, can you come with me everywhere? 

He said, “I don’t want to know about that, it hurts me when it happens infront of my eyes, that(catcalling) doesn’t happen infront of me” 

And there it was. The classic, don’t come and tell me. Whatever else he might have meant, this was all I could hear. Loud and clear. He even argued and commented on my couture, sending me the only message that I could hear, it is your fault. 

Little kids are fragile, even us adults are, the scars of childhood are hard to recover from. And the most deserving of kids ask for our love in the most undeserving manner. It is true. People make large families, oblivious to the fact that every extra kid is not just an added expense but also a fragile tiny life you have to guard, not under, or over, but just enough. It is hard, to find that optimal balance, and as a friend to some new mother’s who share that their perspective has completely changed since they have become mothers, a couple of them, pretty sure that they are “fucking it all up”. But we have to find ways to combat this. This can’t be another, “it is what it is”. Pedophiles should also seek help. Victims must also speak up, parents and family should function as a support system, where you keep your secrets at, not who you keep your secrets from. It is okay to seek help. 

For the full comic strip :http://www.upworthy.com/its-hard-to-speak-about-these-things-in-public-so-he-drew-this-instead-5?c=ufb1

http://www.tencentticker.com/somethingterrible/

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Romantic love, …

Romantic love, in the full sense of the term, is an emotion possible only to the man (or woman) of unbreached self-esteem: it is his response to his own highest values in the person of another—an integrated response of mind and body, of love and sexual desire. Such a man (or woman) is incapable of experiencing a sexual desire divorced from spiritual values.

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When Gogol’s(Kal Penn) father Ashok(Irrfan Khan) dies in The Namesake, the boy not so unceremoniously lets a tapping-on-some-music barber shave off his head. Shaving off one’s head is customary to a son whose father passes by. But I won’t talk about that. It’s an image I have seen one to many times. Someone carrying off something so ignorant about what it really means to you, and it is not their fault.

Being an Indian who has seen some crucial moments of her life unfold abroad, as a kid, a teenager and someone who went away for college. Nothing got to me more. Than being this foreigner, in this foreign land, where your rituals are nothing but either a source of delightful inquiry or an inconvenience to everyone else. And I am sure it is true of other subcultures living in countries with diverse populations. Because in those moments, I cannot be someone who is an informative brochure.

While I was a college student, away, mostly in a dorm on a diwali evening, unceremoniously going about a day, that is the bigest day on the hindu calendar, I felt a ting, a pinch. I would organize dinners over at the Indian restaurant, but it still never felt festive enough. Yes, I could wear my heals under my ethnic wear, pertaining to the weather, but sometimes I was forced to wear snow boots, because well it was snowing. The clothing I wore, in no way was graceful enough for me. Neither did they seem graceful to me. I truly felt like an impostor wearing those clothes. But I wore them, because that was the only thing I could do on a diwali evening away from home. I couldn’t get my hands or my feet heenaed neither could I draw a rangoli on a floor. 

The exact things I used to be not that excited about, when I was back home. A rangoli, yes but a heena? hah! I was always too cool for that. I still am, go figure. But as a kid, when I was back home, these mindless rituals seemed rudimentary, and unnecessary. Now, they seem like a connection to my roots. 

When a hindu man dies, as tradition pertains, his son gets his head shaved, his wife removes the vermillion from the parting of her head (usually a signifier that a hindu woman is married, and her husband is living), removes or breaks her bangles, gains white clothing, basically removing all colors from her face and body, to signify her loss. We mourn our dead in white. The only difference is, when in a foreign land we are so caught off-guard with it, that we are usually left with an option of getting our heads shaved by a man who has not the first idea about why we are doing this, and hell he might even compliment us afterwards. It’s not his fault ofcourse. It’s just in those moments when you feel truly away.

I come from a family of the new India, but these are still the sentiments we share with our ancestors, perhaps. Its is thru these rituals that we materialize and register our loss. While I lived in America, happily so I never went to a funeral, but I did attend a handful weddings, and a few of them were Indian. When I peeked into an American wedding, I was always an outsider peeking in, it was always amazing, it didn’t matter to me if they were doing enough or if they were doing less. As whatever was, was new and enticing. Similar to the reason, why I have always preferred interracial relationships over intra-racial. Yet, when I attended Indian weddings, I terribly missed home. To the point that I stopped rsvping to those. And even when I attended them, they felt so incomplete. 

It felt as if these people do not dully understand the meaning and ethos of it all. They will never get why our weddings have so many ceremonies, and how perhaps that is the reason our marriages, the majority being the arranged ones, last. It is not just celebration, and an elaborate show of wealth, it is also ritualizing yourself into the next chapter of your life. 

It is like this, it is like joining a fraternity/sorority, the rushing, getting to know the brothers/sisters, getting to know the letters, the hazing, and other rituals specific to different organizations. It becomes a life long bond hence. 

Similarly Indian weddings, which are annoyingly so long, yes. Are also ritualizing yourself into the next chapter of your life. A step spread over so many days. Earlier thought of as an inconvenience, now, I commend it. What is to life, but birth, death and marriage? If these are the things we let pass so unceremoniously or without any deeper meaning to the people involved, what is there to anything, if at all. 

You see I am The Vow kind of girl, my pinterest does not have a single wedding dress, a wedding cake or decor. I never grew up thinking about my wedding, as most girls did. Frankly, I thought I was too cool for that. I am or I was The Vow kind of girl, who atleast till this point thought, weddings are a huge waste of time and money, that I would rather elope, or idk drive thru vegas and get married. That maybe one sunny afternoon, I would call and say to my future fiance, “hey it looks beautiful outside, want to go to the City Hall on Broad and Chambers, and get married?” No frills, no show, and focus on the marriage and not so much on the wedding. 

I mean, I thought who is a wedding for? for the guests? for your parents, if you are Indian. 

Yet, now my predicament on the whole thing, might have changed. In the next seven days my childhood friend gets married, my first friend. And I can go there, with my ever poker face, and not feel a thing, but I know why I avoid these weddings. To avoid life. And now I think, I am done with that. There is a sweetness to these rituals that only leaving home could have taught me. That only someone else’s ignorance could have taught me, how much I hold some things so dearly. 

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