Things Girls Need to Do Differently

Take More Risks – Girls are generally prone to play it safe when it comes to their own needs, perhaps because they have been taught to argue sparingly and maintain a comely attitude. In addition, since they’re conditioned to think with restrictions and indirectly made to feel inferior, self doubt lingers in most girls‘ minds.

Doubting and belittling your goals so that you don’t come across as demanding, aggressive or impulsive is idiotic. It is even more idiotic to think not taking a risk and being a good person are the same thing. It’s important to look at the Reward-to-Risk ratio when one is contemplating doing something but, not doing anything is just plain cowardly.

Stick to Your Guns: From the time they prancing around in their pretty pink pinafores picking pansies and periwinkles to braid into their pretty blonde braids, girls are chided for ‘unpleasant’ behavior like making noise or being unkempt. Once an adolescent, parents have earlier curfews for them and tend to keep a stricter eye on the teenage girl. In most cases, girls tend to stick to the rules and pride themselves on being prim and proper or ‘good girls’.

But, in the workplace or in major decisions in life, these very parent-controlled limits tend to puncture holes in girls’ confidence and their analytic ability thus, making it hard for them to persist once they’ve decided on something. Girls need to believe in themselves a little more and learn to care a little less about things that are minuscule in the larger picture. Today, it is stupid to expect a girl to be a doormat. Also, please don’t be afraid of being disliked if it’s in lieu of something you’re passionate about and which will bring obvious value to your life. Sometimes, you gotta hold on.

Avoid Being the Damsel in Distress: There’s no Prince Charming on a ‘Tide’ white steed coming to rescue you. There’s no need to behave like a delicate darling and run to someone when anything remotely challenging comes your way. It’s cheap, parasitic and irritating, to say the least. Get a hold of yourself, be your own damn savior.

When I Feel Like Punching People

You know those people who’re bloody annoying most of the time – they’re the inconsiderate, mean, nasty, gossip-mongering irritants who make your day foul, at least for a while after you’re done interacting with them. You think to yourself, why the heck am I talking to these good-for-nothings when you’re in the middle of a long, pointless monologue  -y conversation with them. Here are some of the characteristics of these irritating idiots and their annoying and pathetic problems :-

1. Whiners: All they do is whine about how they’re stuck doing something they didn’t want to. Or what somebody did to them. Or how their Ramen noodles always get burnt. Or how they got stood up – again. Well, why don’t you guys gaze inward and see where the real issue lies? Stop blaming everyone but yourself and quit making everyone else’s ears bleed.

2. Victims: These folk just want to blame someone and differ from ‘Whiners’ slightly as they think everyone is against them. Why, you ask? Well, obviously because everyone’s jealous of them/ takes advantage of their ‘good nature’ and because as they so succinctly put it themselves, ‘Nice guys always finish last’. Um, no. The only reason you finished last is because you didn’t run fast enough. Deal with it. Move on.

3. Arguers: In a previous post, I mentioned how a conversation often becomes an argument, a chance to be ‘right’. Arguers are the other half of that dialogue. Everything is a pet peeve and every topic has to sway in the direction they agree with. These folk just rant and rant and rant till you feel like you’re about to snap and slap them hard.

So, what makes you annoyed when interacting with another person?

Midnight Snacks on Mars with Owls

The cool wind, fine moonlight, twinkling stars. You catch a peek of Mars now and then in the night sky and sigh for you love this time of night. Trees seem to sway in rhythm, almost singing to the moonlit skies and the cool breeze appears to serenade the scintillating stars as the wise owl looks on.

It’s that time again, when everyone is asleep, no one interrupts you, when you can actually hear your own thoughts reverberating through the cosmos, uninterrupted. Maybe, you’re tuned in enough to hear what the universe is saying to you, too. Yes, being a night owl has many perks.

The city one lives in has a completely different feel post 10 p.m. – it’s like a whole new place one yearns to explore. Forget pubs, try going to the beach or a park at night. Sigh. Few things are of such breathtaking beauty.

And, midnight snacks. Ah, midnight snacks are comfort food like none other. Whether it’s an orange or a yummy leftover chicken sandwich, few things are more satisfying than a delicious midnight snack! Also, enjoy your Mac n’ Cheese as you stream the newest episode of ‘The Big Bang Theory‘ or ‘Gossip Girl‘, internet speeds are awesome at night, try downloading 300 MB movies in less than fifteen minutes at any other time of day!

Some people find the night-time to be ideal for studying, writing (O Hai There!), reading, introspection, composing music (Chris Martin, A.R. Rahman) and what not! It is truly an exquisite time and, for all those morning birds missing out on all the action, fear not for an early riser and a late sleeper are not that many hours apart!

The Lost Art of Holding a Conversation

Being a conversationalist, I enjoy a discussion on just about any topic. I find having conversations about anything and everything under the Sun not only triggers thought and results in exchange of information but, it also gives one food for thought to introspect and look at things in more than one way. I find talking things out not only to be therapeutic but, also enlightening.

Sadly, nowadays people value conversation less than cheap cologne, debating is misconstrued as arguing, discussions transform into gossip sessions and dialogues often become monologues. I find there is an increasing gap between those who are actually open to exchanging ideas and finding solutions and those who just want to shove their opinions down one’s throat. Isn’t the whole point of a conversation taking away something indelibly constructive, something that helps us piece the larger puzzle called life or am I missing something?

Ideal conversation must be an exchange of thought, and not, as many of those who worry most about their shortcomings believe, an eloquent exhibition of wit or oratory. – Emily Post

Often, when a group of girls start talking, it seems kinder to throw myself out of an adjacent window than endure the hateful gossip and bitching that ensues. Guys are not far behind, in fact guys can be nastier than girls when it comes to gossiping! Cattiness, thy name is gossip!

Another sad fact is with the advent of Social networking Sites, organic conversation has taken quite a hit. Facebook chatting and Skype never really seem the same and often when one meets a pal or actually talks to them on the phone after a long, long time, conversation is muted and awkward.

Moving on to body language during conversation; People hardly maintain eye contact, fiddle around and seldom display any interest if the conversation doesn’t involve gossip or dirty little secrets or confessions. Not only does this make the other person feel like they’re not being taken seriously, it also makes one doubt the interest factor and the validity of the discussion!

Also, why do folk keep talking about useless stuff like movies or music? I don’t think discussing movies and what-not is insipid but, it’d be great to discuss something worthwhile once in a blue moon! Why don’t people like discussing things like society, politics, philosophy or art? And, every time one initiates a slightly serious topic, either the topic is changed or turns into a mud slinging fest. For instance, try talking about politics and the ‘Obamacare‘ bashing begins.

At the end of the day, sometimes I just want to have a meaningful conversation about something meaningful – a heartfelt one-on-one about something not related to Taylor Swift’s newest song about her newest ex-boyfriend.

What about you? Take the poll!

On ‘Losing My Virginity and Other Dumb Ideas’

Not one to typically indulge in mindless chick-lit, especially works authored by desis, I picked up ‘Losing My Virginity and other Dumb Ideas‘ primarily because the title intrigued me. As I read the jacket blurb followed by the first two pages of Madhuri Banerjee’s debut novel, I found myself wanting to read on. Not because the story was particularly gripping (it wasn’t) but, because there was a certain simplicity with which the story was narrated.

The novel is centered around thirty year old Kaveri, a single, educated working woman in Mumbai. She is well established in terms of career but, her life revolves around the massive “problem” that she’s a virgin and she wants to rid herself of this humongous albatross hanging around her neck. A stereotypical hot-Bollywood-industry best bud sets her up with potential “devirginizers” and doles out gyaan on love, lust and men while the protagonist does little but judge her friend’s character and errant ways while placing herself on a pedestal.

However, our heroine finds her “One Great Love” in the form of a hunky “Greek God” (actual description in book)  in Goa and a whirlwind romance begins with the deflowering of romantic Kaveri. In case you’re wondering just how romantic this encounter was, here’s an excerpt:

“The rain seeped through my light shimmer shirt and I saw him noticing my breasts… We had a soul connection.”

The twist in the tale comes in the form of a Missus Greek God and Kaveri’s ability to delusion herself into becoming the ‘other woman’ in our Greek God‘s life. Kaveri does what any hopeless romantic would do, she molds herself completely in order to become Greek God‘s spare muse and repeatedly ignores her savvy Bollywood friend’s pleas to look at the situation with objectivity.

Many a broken dates, fights, make-up sexual encounters, lost assignments and a ‘Rakhi ka Swayamvar‘ inspired reality show later, our heroine has an epiphany wherein she sheds her inhibitions and, gets off the path of immaturity, so to say. (Oh, and there’s also a psychic in the mix, somewhere.)

Banerjee’s writing is cheesy, to put it bluntly. She can’t really write very well either, as is obvious from the colloquial prose and appalling grammar but, her writing has an iota of honest emotion that tides her laborious story through. Furthermore, the editing is quite off – there seems to be a disconnect in the formatting of chapters and attention to detail is non-existent.

However, Banerjee’s protagonist’s reflections and brutal honesty about her own flaws is what gives the book its unique flavor and soul to the work. Kaveri’s saving grace is her willingness to acknowledge her mistakes and forgive herself for them. ‘Losing My Virginity and Other Dumb Ideas‘ is a lot of things but, it is not a good book in the literary sense. It is, however, an honest reflection of how messy life is.