General ramblings

Three Men

(Picture symbolizes hope and funnily, shows Liberty Island- which was the Port of Entry for most immigrants to the United States. What I’m facing is something to do with immigration too)

I’ve been going through a difficult period in my life. Lots going on and nothing is in my hands. I can only play the wait and watch game. The worst part is, this might affect my career. I know that this is not the end of my life and even if things don’t go my way, life will go on and I’ll find something else to do. I’ve been in a melodramatic mood since the past couple of days, hardly sleeping, hardly eating, rejecting invitations by friends to go out for a drink. You get the scene.

Then I saw three different people last evening, who seemed to be facing greater troubles compared to me. I was waiting in the parking lot of my company, in my car, waiting for my friend to join me. A man on a wheelchair rolled out. I’ve seen this man before. He opened the door of his car, threw his suitcase in the backseat. Next, he glided on to the driver’s seat, dismantled his wheelchair and threw that on to the backseat too. He lifted both his legs, one by one and literally kept them in the car, as if they were dead objects. Which I suppose they were. Semi-dead. And he drove on. As if that was the most natural thing to do. Then I looked at these women walking around in high heels. Did they know how fortunate they were? Their legs could also bear the burden of those high heels!

I was driving back home and on my way, stopped at a gas station to get some soda and chocolates. That’s when I saw the second man- he was bending over a crutch and trying to cross the small lane. In the process, he was holding up a couple of cars behind him. It’s weird that the car closest to him went on advancing at a slow speed instead of stopping completely, and waiting for the man to fnish crossing the street. The man felt so guilty/awkward/uncomfortable because he was making these cars wait. I felt really bad that these SOBs were making him feel so.

Anyway, I drove on and ended up going to a full fledged grocery store next, because I needed to buy some alcohol. The third man was a Salvation Army man, standing outside the grocery store, ringing a bill in this bitter cold. Small donations are what he was looking for. I bought the alcohol and was walking out of the store, when I saw him sitting on a bench inside the store, coughing profusely. The cold weather and the wind was obviously too much for him to take. After he felt sufficiently warmed up, he resumed his duty of ringing the bell. I can’t even begin to tell you how upset this made me. I donated some $$$ and got back to my car in an even more sullen mood.

Were these three gentlemen trying to teach me something? I think so. People have greater miseries in this world and here I am, wallowing over mine. Yet, I can’t help it. My misery is my own and I can’t seem to find a solution. I wish I could leave all of this, stop being so materialistic and put my life to good use- take care of old people, poor people, people truly in need and stop trying to be “efficient” (yeah…the cliched stuff).

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General ramblings

On Monogamy and Sex

A substantial minority of women, as well as men, are not, in practice, monogamous but are likely to claim to be. Occasional ‘lapses’ are explained as one-off events of little significance…Many heterosexuals say, for example, that it is better to ‘stray’ with someone you don’t care about than with someone you do care about and that they could cope if their partner had a one-night stand that ‘means nothing’ but not if it was a meaningful relationship. We find this perplexing. Do women really want to have relationships with men who treat other women like this? Would they not rather have relationships with people who cared who they were intimate with? Are new ‘meaningful’ relationships really so threatening; do they necessarily invalidate an existing relationship? Is it time we questioned anew the contradictory, and often disturbing, ideas that support monogamy.

….

Why is ‘sex’ considered the special glue which keeps people together (or not); what’s the potential of having sex with friends, and for destabilising the primacy of the ‘the couple’ in our everyday lives? How can we challenge ‘compulsory sexuality’ – where all romantic/intimate relations are expected to be sexual between adults? How can we find freedom and fulfillment within a range of personal relationships, which complement rather than ‘complete’ us?

-Source

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british rule, Calcutta, General ramblings, History, Independence, India, Life, Thoughts

The Pre-Independence Calcutta

I was lucky enough to stumble upon these pictures while roaming around the internet. This collection is a rare gem for people who’ve ever lived in Calcutta. Nothing seems to have changed, except for the model of the cars and the crowd on the streets. And the color and quality of the pictures. I wish I could go back in time and live in that era. Everything becomes history, even before we realize it.

These photos were taken by Frank Short, an American serviceman, while in Calcutta and Madras in 1944. He was on duty in the Burma theatre during World War II.

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