Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Critical analysis

Hypothetical situation -

X is walking down the road, minding her own business and looking nowhere in particular. Ten feet from the shop she meant to go to, she is stopped by a scraggy-looking man and a woman carrying a child. All three look lost and tired. Feebly, Man asks X if she knows Hindi. Somewhat reluctantly, X gives a diffident nod.
Man (croaks; X has to strain to hear him): We were going to go to Rameswaram but.. (trails off on seeing X’s face)
X (without meeting his eye): No money-
Man: Don’t want money. Biscuits.. food.. (points to child)
X looks at child and quickly looks away. ‘ I’m not carrying food’
‘..If you could help us.. child.. milk.. biscuits..
After a moment’s indecision, X fishes out two ten-rupee notes, hands it to grateful Man, points vaguely at the distance to a grocery store, and walks on hurriedly. As she's walking, she becomes aware of two hitherto unnoticed bystanders with unmistakeable sniggers and just a hint of amusement on their faces, and hastens into the shop in relief.

Question -

Was X a gullible fool in the above passage?

Sunday, May 18, 2008

au revoir

It’s time for the resurrection post again, the first back-home-to-good-net-speed post. The one that is usually a recap of the sem that was, and plans for the hols. The sem that is to be is too far ahead as yet( and anyway, that will be part of the last-rites-before-hibernation post) Right now, the only thing I can remember about the last sem is.. just that – it was the last sem. Still feels surreal to think that I might never see some of those faces again, that when I go back to campus for the last time, to see it rain-washed as I first saw it, it will not be quite the same.

Because it’s not just your circle of friends and all the times you had with them that you’re going to miss. It’s everyone, and everything you’ve always associated with them, set against that one unifying background of BPGC, that you’re going to miss. It matters not if they were a Somebody or a Nobody to you, whether or not you can attach a name to their face or a face to their name, they were all part of the big picture that will be incomplete without them all.

The guy who always came late to class, the one who always wore one of two tshirts only, the funny- haired fellow (which one of them, you’re wondering, now, aren’t you :B), the girl with the phone round her neck, the guy who slept through s.k.ghosh’s first p&s lecture and began a long series of thoroughly forgettable pj's, the Breakfast Guy whom you only seemed to notice in the mess in the mornings, the girl who petted the campus dogs when noone else would go near them, Bandage Guy cos his hand looked like a mummy’s the first time you saw him, the guy who spoke of Internal Bleeding Inside, the always impeccably-dressed Mr.Mon , the girl who always got up and ran for class, Familiar Face (and to this day, you dunno who he reminds you of), The Enlightened One, the Blue Brilliant Boy, the Insomniac, and Case and Whistle and Red Shoe and Superstar and DDRF and Cannonball and Smiling Face and Hermione and Assistant and all the rest of them, who, bless them, probably have no idea you know them, or worse(?), this is how.

Maybe you no longer refer to them by these first-impression nicknames, maybe you found that first impression isn’t always the best impression. Maybe you now know them well enough to call them something that alludes to a special memory between you, or maybe you know them no more than you did when you coined that first nik. They may have been the first people you noticed as you began a new life in this campus, even before you made your first friend; they may be the people who, unwittingly, are part of your first memories with your best friend, or they may be your best friend. It doesn’t matter, you’ll miss them all, varying degrees or not.

This post, then, is dedicated to all those friends/acquaintances/strangers, nay, to all my batchmates and seniors – the first faces I saw on campus – for all the memories we shared without really sharing.