Saturday, November 21, 2009

Stress Buster

Modern life is tough. If you want to make your dog happy with white bones, kiss your wife goodnight with a smile on your face, and shake your business partner's hand whenever you greet him, all in one day, you'll need a special someone. And that's special someone is what I will call a Stress Buster.

You might meet him anywhere. In the city. Or in the town. You will recognize him as the guy who does not have a job. I mean, a real job, like yours. His job is only to Stress-Bust. You go to him, wave a 5 rupee in his face, and he sits down beside you. He starts massaging your knees because he can tell you have hurt them. He knows that by looking at your face, by looking at the creases on your forehead. He will not smile, will only look down and keep massaging your knees until you tell him off with a curse. You might want to hit him across the face with your briefcase (brown leather, body fabricated in pure aluminium), but he runs away. He keeps running for a while, and then turns and checks if you are still there. If you are, he comes back running again and kisses you on the cheek (if you let him). Then he leaves.

Sometimes, you see him in your office, sweeping the cigarette ash off the floor. The floor is brown mosaic set in pure white granite (which cost the company 700000 rupees more than it was allowed to use during the year the office was built in). The sweeper (who cost the company 7000 rupees less than he should have the month his mother died) never gazes at you when you gaze at him. He sometimes notices how your mustache looks when he sees you, but he laughs only when you have turned away. But why am I telling you this? I'm telling you that the guy (the sweeper guy, the guy who laughs sometimes behind your back) can Stress-Bust you. But only when you want him to. If you tell him that your floor is clean enough, and wink, he will come to you. But he will come only after he has cleaned his hands. The hands that cleaned your granite floor.

So, he comes and sits beside you. Then he takes out his mother's old handkerchief and wipes your sweat off your forehead until your eyes have relaxed. Then, he switches off your computer (he hasn't met the shut down command yet, so he just holds the power plug with his handkerchief and pulls it out). As you meet his eyes for the first time, he smiles. He looks right into your eyes, and smiles. Then, he closes your eyes, and takes you into the dark space behind your eyelids. Then, a second later, he takes you into the sound of the chainsaw whirring in his hand. You jump out of your seat, and your eyes say a frightened hello to the chainsaw. The chainsaw grins, with the sun on its teeth. You can't grin back. Now you can only wipe your forehead with your own handkerchief and switch your computer on. It won't open. It got its power cord whirred off. Or cut off. Whatever.

Stress can be very over-powering and you don't want to drown in stress, do you? You need a peaceful life, with your wife grinning at you. No, your wife smiling at you. I know you hate the word 'grinning'.

Let's get to what I know about you. I know that you have a friend who has chronic pain in his back. From sleeping on bunk-beds. In the army. You did not go to the army as a young man, because you did not like your country. You came to the city instead. You love your city. It has automatic toilet-paper dispensers, small, accessible restaurants where you can get fat glasses of chilly Coke, and of course. Your city now has the most number of Stress Busters in the world. Yes, I read it in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Mountain climbers are fun people to talk to. They are happy, well-built, muscular, stupid, muscular and well-built. And yes, they have a good sense of humour. You might have met one in the little coffee shop across the road from your house. Of course, you would not have recognised him. Ever since he had legs amputated, he only gets out of his condo on weekends. He takes a crutch-walk on the same road you take a leg-walk on. The shiny, new road which was built by road-rollers imported from the UK. So as he is taking his crutch walk, he stops at this flower shop. He picks up a rose, smells it, and keeps it in his pocket. Just as the shopkeeper is about to shout at him, he turns and pays him. Then he smiles, smells his rose once again, and steps out with his crutch-legs. He notices you on the pavement. you are gawking at him. Your mouth is open.

You get talking, and eventually you offer him coffee at your favourite coffee shop, right in front of your house. He accepts the offer, and you get to prove to him how well you know your city. He reads your mind and tells you immediately that he was born here. You are shocked. You never thought amputated people were born here. But he tells you he wasn't amputated by birth, but lost his legs due frost bite. He tells you how cold it is atop the Everest, and you shiver. Not from the cold in his talking, but from the clink-clank of his crutch-legs.

You sit at the coffee shop for an hour and chat. You go up to the counter and pay the bill, happily. You are satisfied with your day now. When you get back to him, he is grinning. Yes, grinning. He lifts one of his crutch-legs and keeps it on your forehead. He is grinning. You say you are sorry and will not be late for work again. He grins wider. You feel tears coming into your eyes. You tell him that you are sorry you played online basketball with your online friends. He grins wider. He now starts shaking his head from side to side. From the left side to the right side. He is grinning.

You are lying on the floor, and the crutch-leg man is walking away. He is the best Stress Buster you have known. Because, for the first time, a person has been able to Stress-Bust you. You feel your eyes drooping, and your legs loosening, and your hands opening, and your heart slowing down. Down. You are Stress-Busted.

You reach heaven, and meet the person who wrote the Guinness Book of World Records. He never grins. He says grinning is the most hated expression both in heaven and on the earth.

You make trips to hell on weekends. There, you meet your wife, who has learnt how to play online basketball. Sometimes you see your kids around, carrying pocket-sized chainsaws. You are disgusted and you rush back to heaven.

The Guinness Book of World Records man introduces you to your fortune teller. Your fortune teller introduces you to a crystal ball. The crystal ball says you are going to be a Stress Buster the next time you go to the earth.

You are given a chainsaw, two crutches, a wide grin, and a pair of painful knees.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


The mysteries of the mind
Are as baffling
As the hardest quest without.
The thinker, then, must find
Like doer does
Failure, struggle - and doubt!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


The heart, when in glee
When in passion, flows
Hears solely what it wants
Sees only what it seeks

And purposeless, it flies
For the love of flight
Defiant, stares at the sun
Until blinded by light

Humming, it sings
Madly it sways on the wind
Breathes in gallant vigour
That sweet love brings!

Sunday, November 8, 2009


All alone and hungry
This life, a dreadful fight
Shambles are ugly supports
In crumbs, I find delight

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

On Yearning

Your sight did my eye regard
In all its humble wonder
And my heart gaily supplied
All that rest, hid under

You did, you moved, oblivious
You came, you saw, you went
My eye shone with a smile
That your dear sight me lent

My mind of thought gave way
To a heart of soaring flight
Such, was your pure splendour
Such your beauty's might

And heart, ran here to farther
Completing your being's perfection
Whatever fit you best
It held in close selection

And thus, by sweet deception
It was by you won over
You became its sole purpose
Its one and only lover

But your beauty was fiction
Imagined your stainless sight
Your in-lying love, illusion
Your face, folly of light

Just my vein carried a passion
My heart was love's breeding ground
My yearning was only reason
For all sweet love around