I stand in the middle of a loud club downtown. There’s mindless music enamoring the space and it goes something like *objectification of a woman’s body part* … bass drop… *some more objectification*. In the background modern, independent women are “putting their hands up in the air” and enjoying it.
Few shots down, a sweet girl exits the club and throws up on the bouncer. She looks unwell and in need of help. Clearly the boyfriend bailed, now she’s unconscious, alone and dehydrated on the dance floor surrounded by men and women with sparkling outfits from Zara and matt personalities from Maybelline. Noone comes forward to help because the world is rejoicing to the glory of the ass.
Sunday was a day of theater, little custard platters and Mom making the bed with a new, fresh sheet taking the place of the old, grumpy one. Mom managed to wake us up with the irritating yet so familiar sound of the spoon slapping the surface of the tea cup, announcing that tea was ready. I would wake up unhappy, one sock hanging from my toe and eye booger making me partially blind. Invariably I would land on the floor only to slip on a mini truck or hot wheel carefully placed for an accident (read: younger monster brother). As the smell of half burnt bread would awaken my olfactory nerves, I would make my way down to the dining room aka living area. Mind you, each furniture you touch or sit on here, will make a creaking sound declaring its age like an attention-seeking grandparent. At our house, we don’t believe in disposing stuff, sometimes not even the garbage… no wonder my younger siblings are still here.
We are a huge family, poor yet rich. Each one of us is unique in their retardedness and we have come to accept it. Except me, I am the cribbing older sister who finds her favourite books torn to pieces often times. I am the one who is supposed to act like a lady, pass on wisdom and pajamas to the younger devils. I hate them from morning till noon, by evening they manage to do something cute and as a reward I let them sit on my lap in their tiny pink pajamas and watch TV shows. Fine, I love them but I hate them too. Does that even make sense?
I am weird. I am always sleepy. You get me right? I am always ready for a 20 minute nap. I have Attention Deficit Disorder to top it, so I can just sit in a meeting and nod my way to glory while I am far gone, basically I have traveled from that room to my bed in my head. It’s not that bad, is it? To snap out of this heavy, tiring and mechanized world… take a break from the noise and detach yourself from the scene while your body is right there for people to see. I think it’s tremendously important. It is like a slot in your head you can turn off when required. Every time you do that you give yourself the time and space to relax and not take life so seriously. But those words don’t suit me, I am on auto-pilot, I take life more seriously than life takes me. I am over-conscious of who will perceive me as what and how my sleep syndrome will ruin my life. But that’s okay, I will get there. I think I will sleep it out!
Nights have a funny habit of strolling you through the freckles of time. A tape ceaselessly playing a hum at the back of your head. It is bewildering how everything is recorded…everything!
The one time you cried your eyes in the washroom while a party was going on downstairs, that day when you shook a hand while your heart wrenched in anguish, pain and jealousy.
You lay in your bed – stunned at the cycle of life, reminiscing each moment that left a significant scar in the child inside. There’s no going back, there’s no undoing the hurt.
24 – Well I just used that number to get your attention. Hope it worked. This is from my limited knowledge in advertising – Every 23, 24 and 25 year old will click on this blog post without a second thought. I am 24 and I get you. I am not here to bore you with “Things every 24 year old will connect with”, but I am here because I am 24 and lost. I am no more pepped about partying and getting sloshed. I am no longer the upfront, instantly-likable friend of a friend. Nope, I am the girl under the blanket on a happening Saturday evening with a laptop perched on her stomach, mindlessly scrolling through her news-feed and judging your lifestyle. Before you go “You Hypocrite!” on me, let me announce I am equally fucked up. I want to do ground-breaking stuff and achieve incredible things in life, but here I am sitting away from home, a head full of un-executed ideas, plans and stalled projects. As I write this piece, I have 68 others, saved as draft or let’s just call unfinished projects.
I make excuses for not going out with friends and colleagues because well, it’s the 23rd of the month, I have 600 rupees in my bank account and 7 fucking days to battle. Also my stomach, head and a few other body parts are aching (Read: Lies). I go through wedding albums on Facebook and judge your decision to get married, I refrain from commenting political opinions on social media, well because you know why it’s called ‘politically correct’.
I also smile at young 19 year olds living like they are juicing out the life from within their years and I do periodically read a piece or two online and feel the zeal coming back to life. Yes, I am HER – little unsure, an upholder of ‘transparency’, ‘honesty’ and ‘realness’. I am also those 24 year olds who used to believe in their potential to revamp the world, endorse integrity and goodness and who have somewhere and somehow lost track, fallen with a jerk and landed in an unfamiliar territory with no Google Map.
This is for you, in your 20s, for you have all the time to figure it out (or to not). There is probably nothing that needs your figuring out, possibly life is just to be lived. Let’s dismiss the pressure of expectations, the ideal images in our minds and travel with zero forecast. Let’s trust that we will be found, cherished and remembered.
If you are already scandalized by the title of today’s piece, I am really disappointed with you man! I haven’t even begun to describe the experience. Of course, most women reading this have already been through this, some of whom would be nodding in approval, the other half would go “It’s not that bad, come on!” The latter are the lucky bastards walking on the face of this earth with the most perfect brows like Nike’s logo. They visit the parlor twice a month and come out without their skin going pink in pain.
I, as you must have guessed, fall under the first category. I hate the entire process of sitting with my arms in a weird angle stretching wide – the skin above my eyelids. I mean who was the first woman who sat up, looking at the mirror, saying-“ Yeh miniscule, never noticed portion of skin mein baal zyaada ho gaye hai, inhe ukhaad te hai, sundar lagenge.” I mean who? I shiver each time the parlor’s Mini aunties zoom in towards my brow with a piece of thread hanging from their mouth, it’s yuck! Then she places it right where it can hurt the most and ‘pluck’! There goes a follicle of hair which assures so much of freaking pain that you may cry.
I have always found it extremely unfair how our boys grow out their body and facial hair with pride. Their bloated chest and crooked smile spells out “Mard”. And these same group date women who have not a single trace of hair on their bodies. What about our “dard” boys? Why can’t we be cute fur balls with hair growing out of us like a tree!? How come ‘No Shave November’ makes you cool with stubbles and ‘Don’t Shave December’ makes us unattractive? Double standards and the problematic images that we have been fed by media’s various channels. I have watched videos of the ‘Try Guys’ going through the menstrual and labor pain but I wish more men try getting their eyebrows done. I am sure it’s going to be a game changer. And for the girls who are shrouded in self-doubt and chained in judgements, all I have to say is : Grow it out, show it loud.