Archive for the ‘Random Observations’ Category


April, 2009: Walking across the arid rocks in Hampi. The dust billows around me and the boulders radiate heat. We’re headed for Endless Bliss or Little Rock or something of the sort. Can’t remember which – there is an endless expanse of climbing possibility in every direction. I step down off a rock. Pain lances through the sole of my foot and I scream. Lift up my heel and try to pull my chappal off. Can’t! A 3-inch thorn has ensured that its nailed to my foot. Blood drips onto the dust…


2007: I’m standing in the kitchen of my apartment in London. Pots and pans are strewn all over the place. I open the oven to check the baking tray. I forget I don’t have mitts on and I grab the tray. Burn….


Any number of times in my life: I walk through a doorway. My arm whacks the frame. Elbow makes contact. Shock rockets up my arm. Its electric. I can’t feel a thing for the next 5 minutes.


June 2012: I’m coming down the dirt track, taking a curve at Turahalli. I take a tight line. Only air beneath me. Roll, roll, roll….. Get up. Crumple in pain.


September 2005: I’m walking through the clouds which have tolled up the hill in Mussoorie. Its beautiful, cool and silent and I’m lost in thoughts. A few hours later I curl up into a foetal ball and cry, wishing the world would invent a cure for kidney stones.


Sweat breaks out on my forehead and drips down into my eyes. I stare at the wall in front of me. Alex tattoos – a poster with a design which I study intently. I watch the lines unfold in a polynesian design. I see designs within the design. I stare at a stain on the wall. I look at my toes and watch them climb up the wall. I breathe deeply.

I do anything to take my mind off the needle buzzing through the skin on the back of my hand. Anything to take my mind off the pain – every kind of pain I’ve ever experienced, all rolled into a series of experiences over the course of 3 inches of skin, bone and nerve. Anything to ensure I don’t jerk my hand away while he works.

Why, oh WHY, did I choose to do something as idiotic as this, on what is considered the most painful part of the body to tattoo?!?!

I look across at The Better Half and I see the same range of emotions cross her face.

I look at the cl0ck.

It reads 7:05. Its just been 5 minutes!

How will I last the whole two hours?


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“Oh-Em-Gee (OMG), I Heart (can’t flippin draw a heart on this keyboard!) the steak at The Only Place. Oh and Bee-Tee-Doubleyoo, (BTW) the chicken pasta is Ay-Doubleyoo-Ess-Em (AWSM).”

Which is entirely true about the steak and the chicken pasta (Hail Shoaib, King of The Only Place!), except that the syntax had me so distracted that the content didn’t really register.

Firstly, I hate SMS language.

No, wait.

I abhor SMS language.

No, wait.

I loathe SMS language.

In an SMS it has some sort of defence considering the shortening of a word into this sort of code allows you to save time and possibly money (since it gets sent as a single SMS instead of two).

The migration of this ‘language’ (for lack of a better/lower word) to the written and spoken word though has little excuse. It drives me around the bend in chat and is execrable in an email where you actually have the chance to sit, look at, compose and edit your words.

A few years ago a cousin of mine sent me a hideous email written in SMS language asking if he could stay with me in Delhi. It made me go cross-eyed, seriously contemplate saying not only NO, but also whether to hire a hitman to wipe that taint on the family name off the face of the planet.

As if it weren’t bad enough to have to read this stuff, I find that one now has to LISTEN to it!!!

The constant use of such acronyms by brain-dead, linguistically challenged morons could actually lead to a situation where people actually forget the words they stand for while using them at the appropriate time. Which scarily, would probably be referred to as the ‘evolution of language’. In my heated opinion however (NOT ‘IMHO’) this would be nothing less than its degeneration, signaling the imminent death of words and sentences of beauty not to mention the burial of poetry (I defy you to claim there could ever be a John Keats of SMS language).

In the future we might actually have a generation that speaks in sms acronyms without even knowing that they ARE acronyms (shudder..).

I can instantly see people jumping to point out the many instances of modern words which have come about in this manner.



Bee-Tee-Doubleyoo, Oh-Em-Gee, Are-Oh-Tee-Eff-Ell, Bee-Are-Bee and the like are NOT and CANNOT be likened to the following (courtesy http://www.hyw.com/Books/History/Medi0015.htm)

BANK/BANKRUPT- In medieval times Italian moneylenders used benches in the marketplace to conduct business. Latin for bench was Banca, which transferred to English as bank. These lenders were required to publicly break up their benches if their businesses failed, the Latin expression being banca rupta-, becoming bankrupt in English.

BEDLAM:- Bethlehem hospital in London was built to house the mentally ill. As most commoners were at best semi-literate, they mangled the name so that it emerged as ‘bedlam’ with the implication of chaos deriving from the insane antics of the residents.

BLACKMAIL- Sixteenth century Scottish farmers paid their rent, or mail, to English absentee landlords in the form of WHITE MAIL (silver money), or BLACKMAIL (rent payment in the form of produce or livestock). The term blackmail took on a bad connotation only when the greedy landlords forced money poor farmers to pay much more in goods than the they would pay in silver. Later, when robbers along the borders demanded payment for passage and ‘protection’ the farmers called this extortion blackmail as well.

BONFIRE- A pagan festival held in England during the summer was celebrated by
burning in huge piles the bones of livestock slaughtered during the past year. These “bone fires” continued into christian times being celebrated on St. Johns Day, June 24. And were still held up to 200 years ago in remoter areas. By the 16th century bonefire was changed to bonfire and referred to any large fire.

BRIBE- A bribe is a sinister thing today but it didn’t start out that way. In 14th century France alms given to a beggar were called bribes. Soon beggars began to DEMAND such alms, when it reached England about 100 years later it came to mean “to extort or steal”. Within another century it came to mean instead of extortion,”a voluntary inducement to get someone to do something for the giver” which has endured to this day.

CURFEW- Despite the modern perception, Medieval cities were actually rather well regulated places, with municipal ordinances governing many aspects of public life to maintain order and safety. However, even the best maintained cities were mostly built of wood, fire was a constant danger, and most cities experienced a devastating fire every few decades. To help provide some protection against fires, many cities required that fires be banked at night. On his first rounds of the evening, the night watchman would remind all the citizens to cover their fires. In Old French this was covre feu, which became coeverfu in Anglo-French after the Norman Conquest, courfeu in Old English, and eventually our modern “curfew,” with the meaning of a limitation.

FREE LANCE- A knight –or other man-at-arms– without ties to an overlord, and thus “free” to accept employment where ever he found it, a mercenary.

HAVOC- A medieval war cry signifying “no quarter.”

TO BEAT BLACK AND BLUE- Originally the colors were BLAK and BLA when first recorded in around 1300. Bla being the bluish-black color of the human skin when bruised.

TO BEAT THE DAYLIGHTS OUT OF YOU- Derived from the original phrase/threat “I’ll let daylight into you!” Which referred to using your sword or knife on the offender.

(I love random lists of random trivia)

Effectively we seem to have moved through one long cycle in time from ancient Egypt and come back to using hieroglyphics to express ourselves.

But, to actually SPEAK in hieroglyphics (‘I heart….’) seems ridiculous to me.

It actually leaves me mystified as to why exactly these acronyms are used in conversation.

Could it be that it actually requires less time and effort?


Nope, that can’t be it.

After all, Bee-Tee-Doubleyoo is actually one syllable more than ‘By the way’. Oh-Em-Gee is the same number of syllables as ‘Oh my God’.

Is it the fact that people simply don’t know better?


Nope, I have extremely articulate friends who now seem to resort to this bilge so it can’t be that.

Which leaves us with just one explanation….

People think its ‘cool’.

Well, WTFUS!

(Wake The Fuck Up Shitheads!)

It sure as hell isn’t!!

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