Friday, October 31, 2008

Are you done staring at my ass, yet?

Picture this. It’s just another day at work and you’re minding your own business. Suddenly you feel the heat of a lecherous stare burn a (two?) hole on your bum. And you whip around and you catch the aforesaid stare detaching itself in a hurry and you watch it stumble away from you. It buzzes around like a bee caught in a jar, and settles on the nearest inanimate object (hoping that you'll turn around, so that it can pounce on you again). Meanwhile, the world moves on and so do you. But the stare...oh no, it doesn't move on. The stare stays.

Whether you accept it or not (you’d have to be in serious denial not to) men just have to stare at your ass or your breasts, for that matter. While pinching, grabbing and the ‘accidental’ brushing are privileges of strangers, men you know by name, place and wife, have to be content with “looking” or like they call it "checking it out". Like colleagues for instance. You know them. Like from the watercooler and the next cubicle and the guy who salaams you when you walk in (ever noticed how the salaam follows his eyes down once you've walked past? "Salaam Madam. Salaam Bottom.") No one can deliver that stare quite like a Mallu male colleague can. And after sometime, once you’ve gone through the motions of hurt, anger, betrayal and disgust, you finally settle for a weary sense of "whatever". ("But he's a good friend!! Whatever!", "But we're really good friends!! Whatever!!!", "But he's got a wife!!! Whatever!!!", "He's a eeffing Bastard!! Whatever!!)

I’m not sure how many women can resign themselves to “men are like that” mindset and pretend like everything’s just the way it should be. But it hurts me crazy to catch someone I know or joke with or talk to, fixedly gazing or even glancing a little south of my chin. Or to know that it isn’t beneath him to discuss my proportions with a co-asshole. Still worse is being third party to a man stripping a woman off her clothes and self-respect with his eyes. And if the man in question is married, he ought to live in a sewer and should be crawling on his no-good, wife’s-food-fattened belly. Imagine if your fancy pants CEO ogles at your boobs like a pimply adolescent? Where oh where in your heart can you find admiration and respect for that low-life? It’s like all that education and career-building went down south to the headquarters of ego, and left him a little empty in the heart-to-head corridor. No wonder the good lord created ED.

Along with the humiliation, that sense of being violated comes with a strong sense of being cheated. BETRAYAL!!!! Someone you respected, looked up to or perceived as a good human being, whose work you admired. When someone like that becomes just another lousy, lecherous bastard in your eyes. That letdown leaves you with a bitterness that gnaws right into your faith in humanity, in men, in respect. That acrid taste of disappointment, that comes from knowing that you’re going to be on display, an object, despite the hours, work, sacrifice and accolades you put in. (I don’t even want to start on how hard it is for a woman to be taken seriously as a professional especially in a testos-fascist-terone society like Kerala. And colleagues with eye-control issues is something we don’t need) That the man is son, brother, cousin, father to some woman; forcing you to accept that you’re the other gender to this loathsome creature, makes you want to barf. Do you guys even realise how far below on the ladder you leave your wives? Oh, but I forgot, you don’t give a damn.

Did you say dress code? Way overrated. Ass and boobs are just as pronounced in salwars and sarees, just as much as they are in jeans and trousers. Chiffon and silk give them pretty contours if anything! So all that “dress properly” jazz – does not work. So women who think that their ‘inappropriately attired’ colleagues had it coming, I’d request you to come down from your high horse. Then you’d see that the guys get a better view from below. and they're watching you,honey.

If you are a man and you can’t muster enough respect for a female colleague and you need to keep being lewd, you are an asshole. And right from the office boy to the boss’s boss, an asshole is an asshole is an asshole. If the shoe fits, I sincerely hope it f!@#ing pinches your goddamn feet to ribbons. Ass****.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

When desire rains

The monsoons are when Kerala, God’s Own Country, loses all inkling of inhibition and goes into a rather unholy frenzy of whim. During this time of the year, the wind, intoxicated by the earth’s musk, picks up her skirts and runs wildly across rain drenched fields and forests, unmindful of the eyes turned upward beneath her. When the colour green ripens and blooms into a riot of red, lavender and pink. The waters are possessed by invisible sprites – dangerous swirls and choppy ripples half-tempt and half -reveal dark intentions. The skies darken in shades of desire and the air is thick with romance.

In the light or rather in the absence of light, of this amorous dance of the elements – man, the thinking species, is caught in between, a reluctant dancer whose feet move against his will, flung to the clumsy rhythm of restraint giving way to abandon. Clothes cling onto the skin with flamboyant audacity. Contours become very pronounced curves. Faces, shameless as the flowers, turn to the sky, and suppressed wants surface, rather inconveniently. To a contained mass, this unabashed opening of legs by nature comes across as – a guilty pleasure, I guess. They’re turned on and off at the same time, they both hide under umbrellas and kiss the rain with their mouths open. It’s a time of partial possession and people do things they normally wouldn’t. Like the normally abashed womenfolk hiking their mundus way above their knees, all the while, feeling the sensuous slap of water against their thighs. I just happened to, from my train window, see one such woman in the process.

Middle-aged or maybe even beyond middle aged, she was for sure of that age when malayalee women believe that they’re drying up inside and their husbands are already dipping themselves, or maybe even wading in younger pools. An age when they think that they’re beyond desire – their’s and others’. When they start to believe that their locking of their knees and wants is equivalent to righteousness. A woman of this age was wading through mid thigh water. Her mundu was scrunched up at quarter thigh and her torso was covered only with a skimpy saree blouse, making her look like a bollywood starlet. She waded in slow, languorous moments with the water, like a hungry lover kissing any and every part of her anatomy that it chanced upon. And she, the coy recipient of these attentions, drawing away in shy reluctance and yet expecting in bated anticipation for the lover’s next kiss. Her face was turned away from me but I can’t help but wonder if she tingled at the water’s touch. Did she shiver deliciously and did her face flush when its icy fingers ran up her bare flesh? Did she bite her lip, holding back a cry as the wet tongue lapped up her thighs? Did she realize that age did not mean exempted from the wants of the flesh and soul. Did she realize that she could never be beyond desire?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I’m presumptuous. Therefore I write.

I’d like to star in my own show.

And then, while we’re at it

Could you consider letting me direct, produce and script it as well?

Perhaps, a little editing?

Would that be too much to ask?

Don’t want those places where I bloop the blooper

To be my publicity.

Unless it’s unglam all the way. You know,

The whole nine yards of angst.

That way, I can win an award for pretending?

So where were we? Oh yeah, my show.

Could I compose the song. And put in the music?

Write the score? Or score the score, or whatever?

But I don’t play the keyboard, the guitar or percussion.

Oh never mind, we’ll figure that one out.

Maybe have the spotlight trained mostly on me?

Oh, dint I tell you, I’m gonna star.

Yeah, I like the sound of that.

But I’d like to be my audience as well.

So how can we fix that?

I like sleeping in front of mirrors

And eating while watching television.

Then again, that has nothing to do with the show

I guess. But the show’s about me.

Too much of me? Whatdyamean there’s too much

Of me? Well that I disagree.

How can there possibly be too much

of me? What’s so too-much-about-me anyway?

Hello? The last time I checked,

This was still MY life.

And I haven’t written its rights off to anyone yet.

To whomsoever that may read this blog……

Let me be presumptuous enough to think that you just might be interested in what I have to (oh yes, its as compulsive as it gets) write about. And that you just might be interested enough (or strange enough) to actually follow my ‘going in circles’ trail of thought (wow).
About me? Girl, writer, (reluctant?) copywriter. Quite necessarily in that order, as future posts will prove. And I have this affliction of clutching my heart in my fist…so if blood makes you queasy, don’t tell me I did not warn you!