March 20, 2008

On grammarology: With Apologies to the great/late Derrida

I sifted through some old posts. To find one dated April 22, 2007, on why I broke up with Vodka and my emerging relationship with Rum. Of course, Rum and I have come a long way now. The post ends with a line or two about my grammar habits.

I seem to have promised an expanded post on Grammar at the time. Well, as it happens, today, I feel like talking about my love for the full-stop.

The Full Stop (I also love Capital Letter) is, by no means, an expression of finality. I think. I add a full stop in a short, sharp stroke- like a bit of jeera powder in a curry. Not really as part of a strategy. But at that moment, it sort of fits. The Full Stop, to me, serves the very purpose of fitting into a momentary chasm in thought. Grammarians will say use a semi colon (I like to leave the semi-colon aside. For a rare moment. Like two twigs of lemon grass), it’s meant for exactly that. And I will say to Grammar-purohits that (aside: they could consider a hike) I mean for chasm in thought to be short and sharp. A staccato note. Not a lilting continuum where the break adds to the build-up in melody.

So my friend Full Stop comes in handy when I want deliberately not to think for that moment. Break into the rhythm of the preceding thought with an uncertainty as to whether it will continue on the same line when it resumes, and a finality. Implying that the present thought has been disrupted irreparably.

Wren and Martin had taught us in a junior class in Missionary School that a complete thought ends with a sentence. I say there is no complete thought. Some hang in mid-air. Some shock you like a sudden blown fuse and a sharp spark. Some others burn away like the remnants of a cigarette. Some illuminate and blow out like an anaar on Diwali. Some gnaw away in recurrent outbursts. For years. Against the walls of your intestine.

March 11, 2008

Homes and Worlds

I head out for the Promised Land like any postcolonial theory-practise-confusion type person. In a few months. I had started this blog with a solemn promise to myself that I would not bring in the personal into it, it would be fundamentally musings about being a Misfit and Awestruck in North India and the Delhi activist type world.

But I feel compelled now to talk about the hairpin curve in my life. Somewhat in personal-meets-political-meets-blog way. As the ever receding mirage of the idyllic home floats further and further away. And I dangle my legs from a pretty caravan. Onto some new song-n-dance.

Kicking one more sandcastle. Of loves and hates and happinesses. Trying to cling onto my collected works of laughter and forgotten. And coffee table images of waistdeep waterloggings on Rawdon Street, eucalyptus lovemakings of suburban Bangalore, midnight kabab sojourns, midnight-ladder-sojourns on marijuana, midnight drunk poetries of broken hearts, bum-wrigglings on parapet-less terraces, neoliberal flyovers, glassy shopping malls, creepers of dilapidated North Calcutta, red-and-white goddesses, ilish and shorshe, beginnings of monsoons, wet cigarettes and unfinished orgasms.

I have had many homes. I have built several sandcastles. And kicked them all.

Yet another caravan beckons. Seductively. As I stand up to kick my castle.