I'm a Goan woman, working in Mumbai as the founder of a studio called Totem Creative. I try to make the world happier, safer and more meaningful. I believe education, knowledge and awareness, art, writing and creating Social Impact are my means to achieve that end.



Sunday, December 6, 2009

Jury Time

Punk almost sleeps everyday in the lab, atleast for a few minutes. I slept while working on my sketches. Back pain. Severe neck pain. Alok and I had a cribbing competition. Tapan started looking for laptops. Punk's Yanni music played in the background. I walk out, stretch myself, jump and do cartwheels in a corner. My body's rigid.
It's jury time.

Late nights again.

So this is my last tension-free Sunday. Next week I will be in complete stress and panic, hurriedly finishing my backlog. As I drop my bag and beloved wacom on my bed, I find space at its edge and sleep in a way that roomies like Radha and Polo will have to tell me not to fall off. Punk comes along my side, looking for my bottle.

"You have water?" she asks.
My butt and back facing her, I turn my head, wearily.
"Fill my bottle. Lock my cupboard. Bathe me, wash my feet. Give me a back and neck massage, and oil my hair. Change my bedsheet. Change my clothes. Switch off my lights, put my phone on charger. Make me a cup of good hot coffee. And yeah - kiss my wacom goodnight and place it carefully in my cupboard." I say.

I think at this point of time she would go out of her way to slap me, but her look was blank and lifeless. She turned and left.
Thats how tired juries make you.

Monday, November 30, 2009

(J) Drunk stranger

A man and his wife were awakened at 3:00 am by a loud pounding on the door. The man gets up and goes to the door where a drunken stranger,

standing in the pouring rain, is asking for a push.

'Not a chance,' says the husband, 'it is 3:00 in the morning!'

He slams the door and returns to bed.

'Who was that?' asked his wife.
'Just some drunk guy asking for a push,' he answers.

'Did you help him?' she asks. 'No, I did not, it is 3:00 in the morning and it is pouring rain out there!'

'Well, you have a short memory,' says his wife. 'Can't you remember about three months ago when we broke down, and those two guys helped us?

I think you should help him, and you should be ashamed of yourself!' The man does as he is told, gets dressed, and goes out into the pounding rain. He calls out into the dark, 'Hello, are you still there?'
'Yes,' comes back the answer.

'Do you still need a push?' calls out the husband.

'Yes, please!' comes the reply from the dark.

'Where are you?' asks the husband.

'Over here on the swing,' replied the drunk

Monday, November 16, 2009

Decomposition!

In my recent design process information collection, I figured out this info. Shocking..

Banana Peel- 3-4 weeks
Orange peels- 6 months
Apple Core- 2 months
Paper Bag- 1 month
Cardboard- 2 months
Milk Cartons- 5 years
Newspaper- 6 weeks
Paper Towel- 2-4 weeks
Cotton Glove- 3 months
Tinned Steel Can- 50 years
Aluminum Can- 200-500 years
Disposable Diapers- 550 years
Plastic Bags- 20-1000 years
Glass- 1-2 million years
Cigarette Butts- 10-12 years
Leather shoes- 25-40 years
Rubber-Boot Sole- 50-80 years
Plastic containers- 50-80 years
Monofilament Fishing Line- 600 years
Foamed Plastic Cups- 50 years
Wool Sock- 1-5 years
Plywood- 1-3 years
Plastic Bottles- 450 years

Saturday, October 17, 2009

(J) The Taxman Cometh‏

At the end of the tax year, the tax office sent an inspector to audit the books of a synagogue.

While he was checking the books he turned to the rabbi and said, 'I notice you buy a lot of candles. What do you do with the candle drippings?'

'Good question,' noted the rabbi. 'We save them up and send them back to the candle makers, and every now and then they send us a free box of candles.'

'Oh,' replied the auditor, somewhat disappointed that his unusual question had a practical answer.

But on he went, in his obnoxious way. 'What about all these bread-wafer purchases? What do you do with the crumbs?'

'Ah, yes,' replied the rabbi, realising that the inspector was trying to trap him with an unanswerable question.

'We collect them and send them back to the manufacturers, and every now and then they send us a free box of bread-wafers.'

'I see,' replied the auditor, thinking hard about how he could fluster the know-it-all rabbi.


'Well, rabbi,' he went on, 'What do you do with all the leftover foreskins from the circumcisions you perform?'

'Here, too, we do not waste,' answered the rabbi. 'What we do is save all the foreskins and send them to the tax office, and about once a year they send us a complete dickhead.'

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Thursday Mornin'

So I sat there, thinking of how awesome his work was. I got demotivated. I texted my friends, hoping they would find an answer. Alok and Punk replied something irrelevant. Unexpectedly, considering all the rush she would be in thanks to her brother's wedding preps, Bubbles replied the perfect answer.

"Wht shd 'i' b feeling girl?? Thinking of animation even when i hv horribl, least cnfidnt, out of proportions, least strokes. N dspite he bein awsm, u knw he's4graphics.His most wrk is goin2b imagery.Nt animatd.So he puts it up on fb. Simple! R u4graphics?No.wd n wrk, n put it up on fb just to look gd on fb?Nahi. Mag?Pisaat.introspectn is gd. Dnt let it ruin d bgining of diwali,yedo.hv fun wid ur famly.they lau u4whtvr u r.dnt4get me. I lau n2:)

"Aww." I thought. That was enough to help me pull myself together. Beatles! I put on their awesome music, the ac, and my stress-relieving stratergy - cleaning the room! I think in somebody else's eyes I might've looked like Mrs. Doubtfire. The room was spotless in about an hour. Mum would be so proud of me. Ran downstairs, made some limejuice for mum n gran. Great beginning.
Finally, I'm on a roll!

So I'm gonna go sketch soon, and bind those reference books asap. Make a movie maybe, and write some experience. Get hold of a bunch of old photos and make a memorable album. I'm not gonna let it be drab.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Sid.

It was one of those conversations that could never finish off. Sid was highly entertaining. He defined a good relationship. One which communicates, gives space, and understands. But this couldn't be said in just these 3 words. He had to prove what he meant to me, and I patiently listened.

"There's your race, and my race." He started.
"Of course you guys think we're perverts, and sure, we ARE! We have the damn testosterone running in our bodies all the time! But sex is not all we think of! If that was the case, we would be in those strip clubs throughout our lives!" Sid justified.
He shook his hands vigorously while he spoke, and paced to and fro the pavement in impatience, pointing at himself, pointing at an imaginary girl next to him. If this conversation was muted, it would still be just as entertaining! Watching Sid frustrated gave me inexplicable joy and entertainment.
"Look - my girlfriend/wife should be the one I can freely tell anything to. If I'm hanging out with my buds in a strip club, I should be able to tell her. Right? But no! How would your race react to that? 'Hey honey...I'm in a strip club with my buds.'"
"DUDE!" I yelled, "WTH are you doing there??!! How sick is that! I can't believe you!!" I role played.
"EXACTLY!!" he yelled on the road."AND! If we DON'T tell you guys - and you find out later,"
"OMG!! I can't believe this! YOU LIED TO ME??!! Why didn't you tell me in the FIRST place?!!" I role played again.
"YEAH!! See??! This is your race! Maddening! You women! So COMPLEX!" he cried. "You guys are the most screwed up race I tell you."
I pondered. Yes, we were complex. "But you guys aint any better dude! How can we trust that you weren't hooking up with some random girl after getting drunk?"
"Nikki! Trust our race man! This is all the bullshit that people shove in about us! Its all a huge miscommunication between these races! In the end, we get screwed both ways! Now if you're gonna get screwed either way, you might as well have a blast there and come back and explain yourself to her. Problem is - she won't listen!"
Wow, Sid, are you married?// I thought.
"Look, we guys pick intelligence in you girls any day over how you look! Or the fact that you aren't like the other girls! Atleast when it comes to me, she should give me my space" he said.
"I know, I know, Sid," I said, after bursting into laughter.

"You know what you girls do?"
I allowed him to give me a piece of his mind.
"They use you as a shoulder to cry on, man, and all along, you don't GET it! Guys like me? Nice guys? Dude - they're like on the top of the list of the guys to get screwed over.
You order a double cheese pizza. They wouldn't say a word while you're ordering it, and then when its under your nose, they go -
'NO! That pizza is so full of cheese!'
'BUT-!'
'You can't eat that! Either the pizza goes, or I go!'
'Okay, the pizza goes....But I'm going WITH IT!'" he said, stomping off in the left direction.
"Siiid..." I cried, gasping for breathe. His entire performance was entertaining. I clapped in appreciation and affection.
"This entire relationship between a guy and a girl is poisoned and screwed up by society! Society tells the girl that the guy is a perv, and society tells the girl that if he's in a strip club, he's out with a girl named Candice! And can I blame her? NO! I cannot! Who gets screwed in the end? US!"

Poor Sid. People came and people went, and we stood there at the open irony. If the genders did not get one another, how did I get him now? Miscommunications..Friends passed by on their bikes and yelled a 'hi' to us on the sidewalk.
He didn't stop until his mom yelled from across the road. I started my bike, and we said goodbye. I totally understood him.
But what were the odds of a girl getting him?
Fall, coconut.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Maximum Retail Price

As I relished every bite of my icecream, I read the price on its wrapper. The man there had charged me Rs. 20. the MRP showed Rs. 15. I frowned in irritation. He must have thought of me as a stupid girl - whom he could easily cheat and get a few bucks more from. As I nibbled on, I thought of ym revenge. But I was too tired to get up, and argue with him. It would be completely futile, and my icecream was probably worth 20 at that point. But he had cheated me; and I couldn't just sit there, letting injustice win over my guts. I had plans fro his sorry ass.

I hurriedly gobbled the the last few bits of my chocobar, and looked around near the counted to see if that man was still there. I stood from my seat, climbing down the bus. Had a full on heated conversation (ahem..*argument) with him on the MRP of my icecream. His reason for cheating me was like any other. "Madam idhar aadhe time electricity ahin milti aur cooling charges bhrane padte hain." he defended rudely. And that,, such shaky defence. "Aapko nahin chahiye toh math kharidiye." he said, indifferent. The ass didn't get it. All of them had miserable excuses for making a few extra bucks from dimwitted cutomers. But I wasn't one of them. I felt my fists clench for his face. My face might've looked red. I had never seen defeat like this. he refused to give my 5 bucks back. I walked back to the bus, cursing his shop and business. He had told me people were ready to buy from him, and that if I had a problem, I shouldn't have bought it in the first place. I cursed myself for being stupid. What kind of brainless oaf was I? I sighed, and walked back to my bus, trying to forget.

Let's not shut up and enjoy our icecreams.
Let's fight back.

Moral: Check the MRP and buy it at that rate.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Dear Sir

Dear Sir,

I study in your flash class, UG 2nd Year. I have written to inform you that I find your class devastatingly boring. I had decided to bunk everyday and work on it through web tutorials, which I'm doing anyway, but I've changed my mind so I don't have backlog.

If you spot me playing farmville on facebook or looking through youtube for tutorials on good animation, please excuse my misbehaviour. It is just a break from the class monotony. I will commence the class assignments today, and try my best to finish them and present them to you.

Yours sincerely,

Nikhita P.
UG IInd Year
Communication Design

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Dreams

We always dream of things in life, sometimes the most cliched things. A good job, a good spouse, good kids, and a good home. There's nothing wrong with dreaming. What surprises me is how human it is of us to not to anything to chase our success. Maybe something's wrong with me. Maybe it's just me, but sometimes, we even KNOW what we need to do to achieve it and don't work at it. We expect success to fall from the sky. We pray to god. We hope to be one of those godsend people, who manage to struggle effortlessly and get lucky with everything. But nothing ever comes easy.

I dream of these cliched things. A beautiful house designed by me, with walls full of paintings done by my hands, and lampshades and furniture made from my sweat and blood. 2 nice dogs, and 2 nice cats, and a racks full of good books, and good music. I dream to be rich, and build an animal shelter for the stray. Give them good homes, and fight for their rights. Hire an excellent veterinarian and pay them a handful to make sure they never quit their job. Become a successful animator with excellent work. If we dream, why not dream big?

Eventually we realize that the bigger we dream, the harder it is for us to be happy with reality. To decline ourselves, and change for the better. To struggle, to feel futile result, and yet not quit, or accept defeat. Life truly is overrated.

A Lucky Woman With A Lucky Dog

It had been a rather boring weekend for Bubbles and I. To get rid of the stress and college workload, we went off to pamper ourselves by shopping and visiting the parlour in Fatima Nagar.

This was now. A year ago, in second or first semester, it was Pankti with me. We had been in Fatima for similar reasons. On our way back, we had passed a slender fawn Labrador, rolling on the gravel of an inner road, leading to a small society of houses. Clearly it was residential area. This adorable lab had a red collar around her – just like my dog Tutu. Her shiny coat was shimmering away under the strong sun.
I couldn‘t resist. I was missing Tutu already! But Punk’s hatred for dogs didn’t make it an easy decision. She shook her head in disapproval as I begged her with a look. She didn’t take much time to buy it. We decided to meet in Big Bazaar ten minutes later.

The dog wagged its tail as I approached it. She – (as I noticed) had beautiful kajalled eyes, and they welcomed me to pet her. I squealed in delight, and ran to ruffle her under her ears and chest – the way Tuts loved it. She responded lovingly as I spoke to her in my bubbles tones – the way I always spoke with good dogs.

I heard a chuckle from the back. And old lady, maybe above 55 years smiled as she saw me melting over this dog.
“Is she yours?” I asked, smiling.
“Yes – she’s my daughter no?” she replied.
“Aunty – my dog looks exactly like her...but he’s way older. He’s turning 8 soon; in March. She looks young – and she’s beautiful!” I said, petting her.
“Oh! She’s Lucy. She’s just 2 years. My name is Usha.” She said.
“Aunty she’s adorable!” I said.
“Haan... I love her a lot. She’s my daughter now. You see, I lost my husband sometime back. Since then, Lucy has been my life.” She said, looking at Lucy lovingly.

I explained about Tutu, and how she was like him. I told her I was from Goa. She told me she gave her house for PGs to make a living. She offered me Tea, but I told her about Pankti. She hugged me as I left, and pleaded me to visit her and Lucy again. I nodded, and gave Lucy one last kiss on her ear, and ran towards Big Bazaar.

A few months later I decided to visit Usha Aunty again. She seemed older than before, and I wondered if she’d recognize me, but Lucy looked the same – healthy and beautiful. I was invited in her house. Aunty wasn’t well, and so her nephew had come to stay with her.
Her house was small and quaint, with a small backyard with potted plants, where Lucy ran free. Her white walls hung beautiful pictures of her when she was young, and a stunning photograph of her husband placing a flower in her hair. She looked like one of the most beautiful women. What must it have been like to lose him? It’s only when we know someone else’s lives, that we see how simple ours is in comparison. Lucy was busy licking me all over. Clearly I was recognized. That was then.

As I recited this story to Bubbles, she was eager to meet Lucy. By this time, I had forgotten Lucy’s name, but I remembered Usha Aunty. As we peeped through her black railing on the front door, we saw the old woman playing with her dog. Lucy was rolling between her two feet.

As she noticed us, she opened the railing.
“Hello?” she said, surprised. I wondered if she’d recognize me.
“Hi Usha aunty - I’m Nikhita, from Goa, you remember? I visited you earlier this year..” I said.
“Oh! Of-course – “her recognition came back.
“Come in, come in! Who’s this?” she said, looking at Bubbles.
“This is Madhuwanti, aunty – she wanted to meet Lucy – I’ve told her a lot about her.” I said.
“Come in, come in!” she repeated.
Bubbles smiled, and we sat on her mattress. As I looked at aunty closely, I realized she looked considerably older than the last time I saw her half a year ago. She was pale and weak. Something had happened.
The entire room smelled of a lab. I filled my nostrils with it to enjoy it as long as it lasted. It had been a very long time since I experienced this. Tutu had died a day before his birthday – and to think, I had still not gotten over him. Aunty fed us with a story of how she had had a heart surgery in April. She had been on her floor, and had fainted suddenly. Lucy had figured this then and there. Luckily, the neighbor came to visit her, and took her to the hospital. The authorities there thought she had already died, because her heart had stopped beating. Lucy had not eaten from anybody in a week, until aunty was back from the hospital. She explained to us those brief moments when she thought that it was the end of her life. Bubbles and I listened in shock.

“She never left me then. And till today, she doesn’t leave me alone anywhere. That’s why she’s grown so fat!” said aunty.
I smiled, but my eyes watered uncontrollably as I thought of Tuts. His scent, his wagging, and unintentional puppy face every time we left the house.
As we were leaving, aunty stated quietly. “God is great to have given Lucy to me. Dogs should not even be called ‘animals’. Human beings betray you, but Lucy has always been loyal. She has always taken care of me. After all – she’s my daughter no?” said aunty, smiling.

We smiled and nodded. She was a lucky woman, with a lucky dog.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

A series of unusual events

25th May, 2009

Some of you might have heard this story already, but this is for those who were there, who lived through it, and for those who never got to hear it.
It was 4 days before our juries. We were sick and tired of working. Suddenly I thought of going out for dinner. I’d had enough of living on processed foods for breakfast and a horrible dinner in the mess. It had brought about lack of appetite in me.

So the plan was made. Miti was planning to come too, but she cancelled out last minute, thinking of the workload and the lack of time. I realized that I might not have got to eat out again until next semester. It had been a while. Thankfully Chi and Lipee were sporty enough to think over it and agree later, and Soumya joined in later. For the first time, we left the hostel at 8 PM. As we had our dinner in Pizza hut in Fatima Nagar, we realized that there was nobody to say “Madam – time ho gaya” to us. It was bliss. We didn’t bother about the time. For once, we could eat without worrying about the time. The meal was amazing!
We got out at around 10:30. Little did we know that this would be one of the craziest nights of the semester. All four of us knew somewhere that there would not be any tum tums to drop us back from Hadapsar. We knew there might not be a bus to take us to hostel, or even Hadapsar for that matter.
But we didn’t worry. Big bazaar was closing. There were men all around us, and we were the last customers for the gola shop, after which it shut down too. We sat there eating Gola’s like fools! It was so spontaneous. We weren’t even bothered about transport. It was really late, and yet we were sucking onto our Golas. Chi and I looked like normal people with pink lips, but Lipee and Soumya’s lips had changed colour. They looked like prostitutes, and we looked like people who wanted to pose with them.

So here we were, clicking crazy photos at 10:30 PM, men all around and no tum tums to go to hostel. When we were done with the Golas we finally caught a Hadapsar bus. Luckily they were still there.. Chi felt like acting stupid for once, cause she never gets to do that with retarded people like me. She got on to the back side where people generally step on, and we three got onto the front safely. There were people pushing and shoving here, so she decided to get in front the front while the bus was moving. After she got in, a small boy actually willingly offered her his seat. It was really shocking.

But the most scary part was when we got down, knowing that we would not get a tum tum. The last tum tum was full of some 16 people, and there was no way we could get in it. We wondered what on earth would help us get back. And then, suddenly out of nowhere, the professor we loathed the most turned up in a van – yelling to us to get in. We didn’t know whether to get in or not. What would he think of us? We paused for a second as his car moved ahead. He kept waving. Did Sripad Kulkarni be the angel for tonight?!! This was so crazy. What would he think? Four girls, out at night at 11 PM in Hadapsar, way past hostel timings, FOUR days before our jury. What would he think about us? What if he turned up in our Panel and screwed our case? We didn’t really have a choice! Shocked as we were, we ran towards the van. He moved to the front seat and asked if there were more of us. We got in in a hurry and the car moved ahead quickly. We were so shocked that we didn’t utter a word. Ironically, he didn’t ask us a single question about why were we out way after hostel timings alone in Hadapsar. He got down somewhere in the middle, and we reached to college safely, wondering whether everything had REALLY happened.

Late Nights and stress-laughter

Yaaaayyyy!!! People I found it!! I'm so glad this wasn't corrupted in my pen drive! Hope you guys enjoy the read, and moreover, the ficticious memories! :)

24/ May/ 09

Chi looked at the computer while transferring her pictures to the pen drive. She had the expression one would have when they saw a picture of their dog after long. However, it was obviously misinterpreted by me. She was actually disgusted with the way Ranka sang. It was a pity that he sat next to her while he listened to his music. She had to listen his besura voice. Often she’d come along complaining. And the hours of stress and prolonged exposure to the computer screen made us go out for walks or to drink some water.

One of those days, Chi turned left and slapped Ranka right across the face.
He looked right, and asked stupidly – “What?”
She raged with the utmost disgust and self-pity. “Your voice sounds like a rat being killed.”
“So?” he asked.
She didn’t know how else to make him stop.

They were the nights I’d get severe migraines. Punk would roam around after short periods of time with red eyes, moaning about the workload. Soumya would cope up by talking to her would-be boyfriend Sam. Suddenly we heard a loud bang; and then another one, in rhythmic beats. Yes. Ranka did have the habit of banging his table over and over while listening to his music. But this time I was wrong. It wasn’t Ranka. It was Alok. He was smashing mosquitos 2 rows of computers ahead. I guessed everyone was going crazy. Lately it was happening to me too.

Madhuwanti had left her cell phone in the mess next to us after her meal, and forgotten about it while leaving. “God, she forgot AGAIN”, I sighed to Lipee and Soumya, looking at Madhu’s phone. I removed my cell phone from my pocket and started messaging her – “You ass, looks like someone forgot about their cellphone”. Her cell beeped next to me. It hit me a minute later how stupid I was to remember that she had forgotten her cell phone and could not receive my messages. These are the things that happen to MITians; lack of sleep leads to an overdose of madness. And sometimes, something we term as ‘stress-laughter’.

DISCLAIMER:
This is a work of fiction. The characters, incidents, and locations portrayed, and the names herein are ficticious, and any similarity to or identification with the location, name, character or history of any person, product or entity is entirely coincidental and unintentional.

Scrap

As the bus rattled on the potholes of the city road, I heard a clinging in the pocket of the conductor.. I looked around in the dim yellow light, and felt a vision. A tiny silver coin under some seat of this bus was waiting, waiting to be picked up by a man as it glimmered in the darkness of a corner.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Trust

This guy had been on a long flight. The first warning of the approaching problems came when the sign on the airplane flashed on: "Fasten your seat belts."

Then, after a while, a calm voice said, "We shall not be serving the beverages at this time as we are expecting a little turbulence. Please be sure your seat belt is fastened." As he looked around the aircraft, it became obvious that many of the passengers were becoming apprehensive... Later, the voice of the announcer said, "We are so sorry that we are unable to serve the meal at this time. The turbulence is still ahead of us." And then the storm broke. The ominous cracks of thunder could be heard even above the roar of the engines. Lightening lit up the darkening skies and within moments that great plane was like a cork tossed around on a celestial ocean. One moment the airplane was lifted on terrific currents of air; the next, it dropped as if it were about to crash. The man confessed that he shared the discomfort and fear of those around him. He said, "As I looked around the plane, I could see that nearly all the passengers were upset and alarmed. Some were praying. The future seemed ominous and many were wondering if they would make it through the storm. And then, I suddenly saw a girl to whom the storm meant nothing. She had tucked her feet beneath her as she sat on her seat and was reading a book. Everything within her small world was calm and orderly. Sometimes she closed her eyes, then she would read again; then she would straighten her legs, but worry and fear were not in her world. When the plane was being buffeted by the terrible storm, when it lurched this way and that, as it rose and fell with frightening severity, when all the adults were scared half to death, that marvelous child was completely composed and unafraid." The man could hardly believe his eyes. It was not surprising therefore, that when the plane finally reached its destination and all the passengers were hurrying to disembark, he lingered to speak to the girl whom he had watched for such a long time. Having commented about the storm and behavior of the plane, he asked why she had not been afraid. The sweet child replied, ".Sir, my Dad is the pilot and he is taking me home."

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Sexologist

A man boards a flight from Delhi to Mumbai and takes his seat.

As he settles in, he glances up and sees a gorgeous woman boarding the plane.

He soon realizes she's heading straight towards his seat and eventually, lo and behold, she takes the seat right next to his.

Eager to strike up a conversation, he asks "Business trip or vacation?"

She turns, smiles, and says, "Business. I'm going to the annual Sexologists Convention."

He swallows hard. Here is the most gorgeous woman he has ever seen, sitting next to him, and she's a sexologist!

Struggling to contain his excitement and maintain his composure, he calmly asks, "What's your business role at this convention?"

"Lecturer," she says, "I use my experience to debunk some of the popular myths about sexuality."

"Really?" he says, swallowing hard. "What m-m-m-myths are those?"

"Well," she explains, "One popular myth is that African men are the best endowed when, in fact, it's the Tamilian who is most likely to possess that trait. Another popular myth is that Frenchmen are the best lovers, whereas actually it is the Bengali. However, we have found that the best potential lover in all categories is the Sardar."

Suddenly, the woman becomes a little uncomfortable and blushes. "I'm sorry," she says, "I shouldn't be discussing this with you. I don't even know your name!"

"Venkatraman!" the man blurts out. "Venkatraman Mukherjee! But all my friends call me Joginder Singh!"

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Children on the way

One never knows how life can change as we grow. It's only when we turn into adults, that we feel like being kids again, and when we're kids, we dream to have responsibilities, a family, a house, and a job. A dream job.

Seeing them I wish I'd never grown. They had so much left in life. So many to face, so many to see. Responsibilities, expectations, and dreams to conquer.
They were happy now.
Five beautifully innocent faces, happy and content with their lives. How I wished I spoke better Marathi to communicate with them. They flocked around me to bravely look at my camera's display, as I composed a photograph of a wall and a vessel. So curious, their eyes full of wonder. The youngest boy of six or seven shifted his legs as I smiled at him. "Do you all want to see?" I asked in my pathetic Marathi, lowering my camera to their level. Appreciatively, they gathered around its screen, their faces full of awe. "Can I shoot you?" I asked them in my broken speech.

The young girl smiled shyly, and I clicked her innocent face. I wished to be eight again. To play, to cycle, and run around. To fall and get hurt, roll in dirt and muck, and have mum yell at me for it. They were so lucky. I wished they'd never have to grow. I showed them their pictures, and they squealed in recognition of their own faces. It gave me so much happiness. They would have something to tell their mother when they ran home for lunch. They would tell her of a strange didi with a camera, and how wonderful it was to see themselves in its screen. It was so exhilarating to see their curiosity and wonder.

I so felt light and happy, that it made me smile all the way back to hostel. I wished I could play with them. I wish I could speak in Marathi. I wish I could make more time.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Class 2

Of-course, one takes his time to fit in and be one of the best. I think I'm still at the struggling stage, though probably not struggling enough. And Alok, on the other hand, had his hard work being paid off. Bubbles seemed distracted as always. Writing, thinking, lost in her world of her own pure reality, unlike me, who was permanently in fiction. I walked around class, observing everyone's work, which always seemed far better than my own. I had a very pessimistic approach to everything I did. Sometimes, some people seem to have such perfect lives. Great work, great friends, brill with sports, singing, acting, dancing, you name it..but I wondered if this was just an unreal thought of mine, another way to see that the grass was greener on their side. What they would have to go through to make it that way, I did not see, or understand, but it was probably very hard. Arvind and Akshat seemed so brilliant at everything. I couldn't ever think of comparing myself with them, moreover, their work. Somehow competition never affected me, positively, or not.

It was annoying how easily I'd get distracted and wander outside class for some fresh breeze. How quickly I got bored with an assignment, and had to see everyone working on it with interest. Maybe I was an I.D person. Hell knows the countless number of times I felt my decision was incorrect.. But I couldn't imagine myself doing anything but animation.

Like Shivani said, sketching would improve in time, but it was more of the art of story telling. I could live with that. :)

Friday, August 21, 2009

A Humble Apology

A humble apology by the initiator!

Leaving Home

Small things turn big. One thing always changes into another. It's funny how you feel when you can see yourself moving far away from home.. Slowly, the miles grow, and that land is unfamiliar once again. The old man sitting next to me muttered a prayer, or was probably talking to himself, and I watched him in the dim light the bus had to offer. I prayed to god myself, for a safe journey back, for I had forgotten to pray to the idol at home. What had changed, I did not understand. But it affected the way I perceived everything.

Class

Our class was full of different people. Different goals, different talents, and different incentives. The best had always been the best, with their flawless lineart and their realistic rendering.Rashmee and Ishani were some of these prodigies. Monica had the skill of sharpening almost any pencil with the most varied cuts, preventing breakage of its lead or charcoal. And there were those, who never really cared what they were there for. Maintaining their hierarchy in the class.

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Renewable Energy Law 2010

The Renewable Energy Law 2010

The lie our government hides behind.

Everytime Greenpeace tells the government that it has to act on climate change, we are told “but the poor too need a chance to develop! And in any case, our per capita CO2 emissions are lower than the developed world’s, so stop freaking out!”

What they conveniently neglect to mention is that a relatively small, wealthy class (1% of our population) already produces twice the sustainable global average CO2 emissions of 2.5 tonnes per capita!

Meanwhile, the remaining 823 million poor people in this country produce just one-fifth the amount of CO2 that the richest 1% produce.

Now, if these 823 million people started using energy like the top 1% Indians do – as is likely to happen if we really do manage to eradicate poverty – then our per capita emissions would compete with, if not exceed, the highest in the world.

Now, if we allow the richest 1% Indians to gobble up the carbon space, the poor will have their right to develop stolen from them, just as the developed world (having gobbled up all the carbon space itself) now wants India to not develop at the same rate.

India, essentially, is indulging in precisely the same "climate injustice" that we accuse the developed world of. The “low per capita emissions” argument is a lie. And our Prime Minister knows it.

A Renewable Energy Law by 2010.

India cannot keep hiding behind the poor and claim any special privileges. India cannot continue to be a rogue state in the global community of nations that are fighting a pitched battle against climate change.

In our own interest, we must move away from a fossil-fuel based economy to a sustainable one. In doing so, we would need support and funding from the developed world because of their historical responsibility in bringing about climate change.

But we can't wait for others to move first, because the stakes are too high. We must have a Renewable Energy Law by 2010. And you can bring about that change.

What would this Renewable Energy Law do?

[A] It will shift our energy pathway to cleaner, more sustainable one through an ambitious Renewable Energy policy.

[B] It will ensure that 60% our energy needs are met by renewable sources by the year 2050.

[C] Through a decentralized energy generation system, it will enable all of us to produce our own energy, and ensure that every village and city in India achieves complete "Energy Swaraj."

Dr. Singh needs to take a stand at Copenhagen

The UN climate summit at Copenhagen in December may be our last chance to avoid runaway climate change. At this summit, India needs to do several things. We need to commit to action that would reduce our carbon emissions in a measurable and verifiable manner. We need to ensure that there is an ambitious deal that gives our people a fighting chance to protect ourselves from a climate catastrophe. And we need need to define our national climate action and (with additional support from the developed world) invest ambitiously in sustainable technologies and their diffusion in the market.

Globally Greenpeace is pushing for some big, visionary measures to turn around the global trend towards runaway climate change. Our blueprint needs political will to make it happen and the opportunity is at the Copenhagen summit in December. Responding to this opportunity is something Prime Minister Manmohan Singh owes not just to our reputation of innovation, but also to future generations of Indians.

Why India needs a Renewable Energy Law.

India needs an RE Law because this is the biggest business opportunity of the century and, if a strong policy is put in place quickly, we could become world leaders in the Renewable Energy sector. Despite being one of the first countries to set up a separate ministry for renewable energy, India hasn't shown a will or vision to be the leaders in this sector.

India’s best selling point in key international markets is our ability to innovate. The biggest risk to this is the perception internationally that we're not taking climate change seriously.

Unfortunately, since we aren’t making advances in clean energy, our reputation is slipping. Our record on CO2 emissions is shocking. We are among some of the worst emitters per person in the developing world, and our emissions are rising faster than those in the developed world. All this can be turned around if our government starts looking at climate change as an opportunity to profit from rather than merely a challenge to be confronted.

60 per cent by 2050! But how?

India has the ability and resources to become a 'low carbon' economy. All that's missing is political will. 60 per cent by 2050 is an ambitious target, but it is not a figure pulled out of a hat. The science dictates that this is what's required. Only a 60 per cent target for renewable energy will stop us reaching the 'tipping point' of catastrophic climate change.

There are many ways of reaching that target. To begin with, we can reduce the wastage of energy we already generate – by building more energy-efficient buildings and making it mandatory for electronic products to meet the highest efficiency standards. Just phasing out the ordinary incandescent light-bulb will save 12,000 MW of energy capacity, the equivalent of 3 mega coal power plants!

But more crucially, we can ensure that the energy we generate from now on comes from clean and renewable sources – such as the sun and wind – instead of highly damaging fossil fuels like coal. All of which will also give India lower energy bills – at home, at work, and on the road.

Logon to http://www.greenidol.in/ to sign the petition.