Have been thinking about it for so long!
An empty day at work led to this. :)
"The whole world is about three drinks behind." - Humphrey Bogart
- There was once a poor girl, as beautiful as she was good, who lived with her wicked stepmother in a house in the forest.
- Forest? Forest is passe', I mean I've had it with all this wilderness stuff. It's not a right image of our society, today. Let's have some urban for a change.
- There was once a poor girl, as beautiful as she was good, who lived with her wicked stepmother in a house in the suburbs.
- That's better. But I have to seriously query this word poor.
- But she was poor!
- Poor is relative. She lived in a house, didn't she?
- Then, socioeconomically speaking, she was not poor.
- But none of the money was hers! The whole point of the story is that the wicked stepmother makes her wear old clothes and sleep in the fireplace -
- Aha! They had fireplace! With poor, let me tell you, there's no fireplace. Come down to the park, come to the subway stations after dark, come down to where they sleep in cardboard boxes, and I'll show you poor!
- There was once a middle-class girl, as beautiful as she was good -
- Stop right there. I think we can cut the beautiful, don't you? Women these days have to deal with too many intimidating physical role models as it is, what with those bimbos in the ads. Can't you make her, well, more average?
- There was once a girl who was a little overweight and whose front teeth stuck out, who -
- I dont' think it's nice to make fun of people's appearances. Plus, you're encouraging anorexia.
- I wasn't making fun! I was just describing -
- Skip the description Description oppresses. But you can say what colour she was.
- What colour?
- You know. Black, white, red, brown, yellow. Those are the choices. And I'm telling you right now, I've had enough of white. Dominant culture this, dominant culture that -
- I dont' know what colour.
- Well, it would probably be your colour, wouldn't it?
- But this isn't about me! It's about this girl -
- Everything is about you.
- Sounds to me like you don't want to hear this story at all.
- Oh well, go on. You could make her ethnic. That might help.
- There was once a girl of indeterminate descent, as average-looking as she was good, who lived with her wicked -
- Another thing. Good and wicked. Don't you think you should transcend those puritanical judgemental moralistic epithets? I mean, so much of that is conditioning, isn't it?
- There was once a girl, as average-looking as she was well-adjusted, who lived with her stepmother, who was not a very open and loving person because she herself had been abused in childhood.
- Better. But I am so tired of negative female images! And stepmothers - they always get it in the neck! Change it to stepfather, why don't you? That would make more sense anyway, considering the bad behaviour you're about to describe. And throw in some whips and chains. We all know what those twisted, repressed, middle-aged men are like -
- Hey, just a minute! I'm a middle-aged -
- Stuff it, Mister Nosy Parker! Nobody asked you to stick in your oar, or whatever you want to call that thing. This is between the two of us. Go on.
- There was once a girl -
- How old was she?
- I don't know. She was young.
- This ends with a marriage, right?
- Well, not to blow the plot, but - yes.
- Then you can scratch the condescending paternalistic terminology. It's woman, pal. Woman.
- There was once -
- What's this was, once? Enough of the dead past. Tell me about now.
- There -
- So, what?
- So, why not here?
From Bones & Murder by Margaret Atwood
“Whose child is this?”
I asked one day
Seeing a little one
Out at play.
“Mine”, said the PARENT
with a tender smile
“Mine to keep a little while.
To bathe his hands
and comb his hair,
To tell him what he is to wear.
To prepare him that he
may always be good,
And each day do the
things he should.”
“Whose child is this?”
I asked again
as the door opened and
someone came in,
“Mine”, said the TEACHER
with the same
“Mine to keep just
for a little while.
To teach him how to be
gentle and kind,
to train and direct his
dear little mind.
To help him live by
And get the Best he
can from SCHOOL.
“Whose child is this?”
I asked once more.
Just as the little one
entered the door,
“Ours”, said the PARENT
and the TEACHER
as they smiled
And each took the hand,
of the little child-
“OURS to love and
Ours this blessed task TOGETHER!”
HAPPY TEACHER'S DAY!!!
...I never thought when we were kids that you'd actually resemble something like a human being eventually - that I'd actually be able to have a conversation with you...ever!
From reading out Biggles to you...and not reading out stories with "metaphors" or literary "illusions"...and definitely NOT reading your favourite author...pretending to be asleep when Mom walked into our room at night, only to have you spoil it all by forgetting to put your head on the pillow...to stealing your money (read: opening a bank account for you)...to have you lending me money now...to dividing even air space on the bed...to understanding your crazy mutant brain...to have you understand me in a way very few people can...to sharing my childhood with you...to becoming the people we both are partly because of each other...
Love you so much!
And, so proud of you - me, Mom and Papa. " (14/06/2007)
This is a post that was inspired by something I read on Megha's blog about one of my favourite songs...
Incidentally, the line "ek sau solaah chaand ki raatein, ek tumhaare kaandhe ka til" from the song Mera Kuchh Saamaan from Ijaazat refers to the 116 phases of the moon that are listed in Indian classical literature. What Gulzar means to say is that all the possible phases of brightness that the moon has to offer, cannot even begin to match the tiny dark spot on your shoulder.
Very, very nice, I think. :)
Anyway, thinking about mera kuchh saamaan started me thinking about my favourite Hindi songs - or, some of my favourite Hindi songs, at any rate.