Sunday, September 14, 2014

Brahmakamal, not.

The Brahmakamal is a Himalayan plant. This is some sort of cactus that blooms once a year, near midnight, so it's a rare sight to catch. We had two batches of 6 and 3 flowers around 3 days apart circa early November 2009. I wasn't around to see them bloom finally though I had monitored the g 'n d of the buds throughout the month preceding. These pics are the result of my diligently bugging my dad.

Near midnight, about to bloom

Less than a night's lifespan

Fb ac, it's time to yield up the ghost. However, like a dog eared album with snapshots of the dearly deceased, my almost defunct blogger will preserve some moments of yours.

Neither rich nor insane. No scientology for me... yet.
For those still wavering about your faith, NOW you can identify yourself  AND YES WE KNOW JEWS like hummus ...
London hice have mouses.
I am not disoriented in place and time. This outdated specimen is a piece of evidence collected at the autopsy of my fb ac.

Happy new year everybody. First, a few things to be thankful for:
1. I'm alive. (This one only I'm thankful for. You all don't have to be.)
2. I don't know if this is a one off or if I will post regularly.
3. Nothing goes the way you expect it to. Nothing at all.

Here's a random story to stretch the imaginative (imaginary?) muscles, and for auld lang syne.

Story title: Coincidence or Supernatural, call it what you will.

Okay, so once I was a fresher in medical school. I was also a city-bred nerd dropped suddenly into a socio-cultural ecosystem more suited to the seventeenth century than the twentieth. (Yes, I know I'm old.) People were big on hierarchy. And keeping women in line. But no more of that here. This is not a rant-fest. It's a story about a story I wrote.
Three months into my first year, they had a college festival. The usual contests, competition, drunken revels. The last bit was male-only. Girls had to be goody-twoshoes who went to bed at seven pm. Lucky for me therefore, that the creative writing events were held in the afternoon, well before seven, or even six-thirty. So I went to participate. My logic went thus: The contest is for students of this college. I am a student of this college. Therefore I am eligible for the contest. I stood in line to register. When my turn came up, the lofty fourth-year taking entries gave me a frown and a curt "What do you want?" I would like a loaf of bread and two dozen eggs, please. I said, "I want to register for the competition." No way she could legally dodge that. My logic is impeccable.
I do not exactly recollect the theme we were given to work with. It had something to do with love, I suppose. So I wrote this first-person account of a conservative librarian sort of girl. She got mixed up, very much against her will, initially, with this scruffy, seedy homeless character. But then she fell head over heels in love with him to the extent that she had him move in to live with her, much to the disgust of her family and friends. Together they had a brief rosy interlude before he died in a freak accident; as happens in all tales of doomed desire. Mediocre, ordinary apparent ending: our love was strong, our love is forever, I will forever carry him in my heart. Zinger actual ending (at-least to my eighteen year old deeply satisfied right brain): She was blind, he was a mangy old stray dog.
Fast forward six years. I'm out of prison, back in Mumbai, and have managed to finagle a copy of Jeffrey Archer's "A twist in the tale" from my neighbour aunty. (Kids I know call me "aunty" now, ew.) I'm blissfully riding the roller-coaster, when bang: I get an eyeful of "Just good friends".


Okay, I've done my duty. If you insist on reading ahead and then feel stiffed or betrayed in some way, well, bite me.

Same female first person perspective, a love that cannot be, of two characters who meet under random circumstances and end up living together. Different minutiae, of course, but same zinger (though opposite to mine) ending. He's a nice guy, she's a stray cat.

Coincidence or Supernatural, call it what you will. But absolutely do not call it plagiarism. That story was mine. My idea, my words, my intellectual property. I had not even heard of Jeffrey Archer when I joined medical school (Hello, pre-internet era! A deficiency I have adequately compensated for since. Baron Archer, you rock.) To be frank, most of the famous authors I had encountered until that point in time were of the ilk of Resnick and Halliday, S L Loney and the unsung heroes at Brilliant Tutorials. Geekistan zindabad!


p.s. I won third place.

p.p.s. Couple years after that, I managed to wangle first place with a story about the supernatural. Rebirth + romance = superhit formula.

p.p.p.s. Nope, that story ain't forthcoming. I'm too old for mushy tales of everlasting love.

p.p.p.p.s. That's all folks! Nothing more to tell.

p.p.p.p.p.s. Seriously??!!? 
Cheese is the answer to many of life's problems. Chocolate is the answer to all.