Monthly Archives: June 2007

Manguide 3: Hobbies & Interests

We know where they live. We know what they do for a living. But what do they do that makes their life more than an existance?

I used to wonder at people who had no hobbies or interests at all….I mean, what is that all about???!!! Now I know a new breed of people. The kind who grew up from the ones I mentioned earlier and ‘cultivated’ a few hobbies. I know it is perfectly appropriate to say that a hobby is cultivated but well…that’s just it, isn’t it? As far as I’m concerned, you love doing what you love doing because you love doing it. Simple? Not to a lot of people apparantly. So here’s a sassy ode to my favorite species of lab rats and the things that they claim to enjoy doing! Ha!

The Bibliophile: Okay scream your lungs hoarse, men, before you proceed reading. Yes, tell me that some of you actually do enjoy reading. Fine, now that we have that out of the way, here’s why I don’t believe you. I claim to love reading. I like some authors, some ideologies, some styles of writing and I know why I like them. I think over what I read and I have an opinion. Reading is, I have said before, like sitting inside another person’s head and seeing the world through their eyes. But it doesn’t stop there!!!! I am so sick, sick, sick and tired of men who parrot out things other people have said. Like hello, I know some brilliant people have said some brilliant things but quoting them ad nauseum does not make you appear intelligent, it just reminds me of a tape-recorder. And oh, by the way Peter Drucker, business periodicals and Chicken Soup for the soul don’t count as signs that you are a bibliophile. So for gawdssakes, ladies, before drooling over the ‘intellectual’ find out whether that’s second-hand intelligence that you’re being fed!

The Listener: Likewise actually where music is concerned, as for books. Moreover I want to strangle the person who said ‘If music be the food of love…’ (oh deyaam, was that Shakespeare?). Beware, beware, beware of the specimen that has a song for every one of your moods, women. That’s a man who has been reading ‘How to hook a woman by snooping into her playlist’. Yeah, yeah I’m a cynic. And I’ve just heard too many renditions of ‘Lady in Red’. I have nothing against romantic numbers but its fun to turn around and tell the guy you dig Floyd and Maiden and see what he comes up with then.

The Musician: As opposed to the above species that only listens to music, this one actually makes music. Now he may be good or he may not. I’ve known a few and I can tell you most artists, even the amateurs are faintly temperamental. Which is probably part of their allure (oh, ask me!!) On the other hand, do be prepared to become the audience for the anthology of your new boyfriend’s compositions. Not to mention private renditions of their works-in-progress. A song, just like a building can be a masterpiece when complete. But just like the brick-laying and cement-mixing isn’t pretty, the process of finding the correct tune, getting it right on those instruments is fairly nerve-wracking (especially if you have to listen to ever goddamn plink and wrong boom-thump) Another point to note is he’s likely to have some kind of a band, even if they only play in the car park (we don’t have that many garages here!) And no, if you think you like one musician and you’ll love the lot, you’re likely to be disappointed. It was a musician-boyfriend who pointed out the different personality types in a band. He said,

The lead guitarist is probably a charmer, the smooth talker, who gets in with all the babes. He’s the most visible one of course. The drummer is likely to be anti-social, which is why he prefers sitting behind the huge set up making big noise and not being disturbed by the world.

Ah, and what did my boyfriend do? He was the bass guitarist, easy-going and charming enough to be part of the ‘front’ but not so ambitious as to want to upstage the lead. I validate that as well as his observation of the rest of the band. Pick your musician with care.

The Traveller: Now this type is fairly fascinating for his multiple exposure. I’m however crossed by the sneaky suspicion that he views the world by a Marie Antoinette-esque viewpoint, oblivious to the idea that most people wouldn’t choose to live in shanties, dirty roads et al if they had a choice. Besides, you know what someone’s grandma said (mine didn’t, she wouldn’t have approved of dating!)…”Don’t fall in love with a traveller, I’ll tell you why, he’ll take you to the airport and kiss you goodbye.” Well, realistically speaking this is obviously a man who likes a change in scenery ever so often so what does that say about his stability? Debatable I know, but worth thinking about.

The Conoisseur: Oh god, how I hate/loathe/detest/abhor this type! His muse may be wine, fine art or literature. Whatever it is, you can be assured that you won’t be spared without a lesson at every opportunity. And no, don’t think it’ll work out well if you share the taste. The conoisseur is snobbish about his interest and it defines him. He’ll brook no competition and it will perpetually be a game of one-upmanship of who knows better. Blah, who gives a damn…I know I’ve wanted to stuff the grand interest in some extremely uncomfortable places.

The Couch Potato: Ah, the only real hobby that my generation has. It’s called the idiot box, darling, but the idiots sit outside it not inside. Nuff’ said.

The Monitor Maniac: Okay, this is a tad different from Couch Potato. The internet is a smorgasbord of delights after all. Gaming, chat, blogging and let’s not forget…porn. There’s a whole new world in there! So what’re you doing outside it, baby? Perhaps you met online. Chweet. Maybe you should keep it that way instead of trying to take it offline. ‘Never the twain shall meet. So forget about the “Do you think we should meet?” It spells doom for an online relationship in the exact same way that three other little words do on a real-world relationship.

The Gamer: As specifically different from Couch Potato and Monitor Maniac. Some things that should be warning signs. 1. He enjoys speeding, fighting and cussing. 2. He is thrilled by the idea of hitting a few buttons and changing lives. 3. His latest score defines how happy he is. Once again, he’s similar to the Conoisseur in that his interest governs his sense of self-worth and while he may seem to gravitate to you on the grounds of shared interest, he most certainly won’t brook any competition. Well, go battle it out over the joysticks if you like. I’ve thrown the damn lot out of the window with the remote control.

The Artist: Now this type I do like. Also unlike the Gamer/Conoisseur, there’s no such a thing as competition among those who love their art and are confident about it. If you share the interest, you might even learn something from each other. On the other hand, there is the temperament, weirdness and the addictions that build the stereotype. Ah well, roll me another joint baby…

The Sportsman: This one as different from the Gamer since he plays games in the real world, not on a computer/TV screen/mobile phone. I don’t actually know too many of this type, possibly since I gravitate to the more ‘heavy-head’ types. I imagine the guy would be quite pleasant if he played some sort of team sport though there’s the whole thing of his having way too many ‘boys’ nights out’. I’m mortally afraid (like every other woman) of the locker-room talk phenomena as well. But that’s unfair I guess, men gossip as a rule, behind lockers or water-coolers. On the other hand, this type is likely to be closer to the whole virile-brutal-masculine thought than his less ‘active’ counterparts. Well, if you can bear to live in ‘Oog hunt. Oog kill. Oog be number 1.’ land, then he’s the one for you. Besides he’ll come in useful if you’re faced by a gang of hooligans.

The Gastronome: I never know what to say to this type. I’m after all, someone who thinks that food is fuel to the body-machine and nothing more. Also, the typical Indian man who loves food is scandalised by the thought of a woman who doesn’t enjoy cooking and horrors, admits to it as well! Whatever on earth can be so interesting about eating? I’m flummoxed. But well, this man is probably the easiest to hook with the age-old wisdom of the way to a man’s heart being through his stomach. Hmm, just watch it with the oily snacks though, you don’t want that adage to refer to cholestrol and have him blame you for his deteriorating health.

The Chef: Yes, this type I am absolutely floored by. When a woman can go out and do things that men have been doing for years, what’s better than a man who comes in and does what we’ve been doing for years? A man who likes cooking is a big, big, big turn-on. Besides this is one interest he can’t fib about. 🙂

Have fun with the boys….just check in on how they’re having their fun!

Manguide 3: Hobbies And Interests

We know where they live. We know what they do for a living. But what do they do that makes their life more than an existance?

I used to wonder at people who had no hobbies or interests at all….I mean, what is that all about???!!! Now I know a new breed of people. The kind who grew up from the ones I mentioned earlier and ‘cultivated’ a few hobbies. I know it is perfectly appropriate to say that a hobby is cultivated but well…that’s just it, isn’t it? As far as I’m concerned, you love doing what you love doing because you love doing it. Simple? Not to a lot of people apparantly. So here’s a sassy ode to my favorite species of lab rats and the things that they claim to enjoy doing! Ha!

The Bibliophile: Okay scream your lungs hoarse, men, before you proceed reading. Yes, tell me that some of you actually do enjoy reading. Fine, now that we have that out of the way, here’s why I don’t believe you. I claim to love reading. I like some authors, some ideologies, some styles of writing and I know why I like them. I think over what I read and I have an opinion. Reading is, I have said before, like sitting inside another person’s head and seeing the world through their eyes. But it doesn’t stop there!!!! I am so sick, sick, sick and tired of men who parrot out things other people have said. Like hello, I know some brilliant people have said some brilliant things but quoting them ad nauseum does not make you appear intelligent, it just reminds me of a tape-recorder. And oh, by the way Peter Drucker, business periodicals and Chicken Soup for the soul don’t count as signs that you are a bibliophile. So for gawdssakes, ladies, before drooling over the ‘intellectual’ find out whether that’s second-hand intelligence that you’re being fed!

The Listener: Likewise actually where music is concerned, as for books. Moreover I want to strangle the person who said ‘If music be the food of love…’ (oh deyaam, was that Shakespeare?). Beware, beware, beware of the specimen that has a song for every one of your moods, women. That’s a man who has been reading ‘How to hook a woman by snooping into her playlist’. Yeah, yeah I’m a cynic. And I’ve just heard too many renditions of ‘Lady in Red’. I have nothing against romantic numbers but its fun to turn around and tell the guy you dig Floyd and Maiden and see what he comes up with then.

The Musician: As opposed to the above species that only listens to music, this one actually makes music. Now he may be good or he may not. I’ve known a few and I can tell you most artists, even the amateurs are faintly temperamental. Which is probably part of their allure (oh, ask me!!) On the other hand, do be prepared to become the audience for the anthology of your new boyfriend’s compositions. Not to mention private renditions of their works-in-progress. A song, just like a building can be a masterpiece when complete. But just like the brick-laying and cement-mixing isn’t pretty, the process of finding the correct tune, getting it right on those instruments is fairly nerve-wracking (especially if you have to listen to ever goddamn plink and wrong boom-thump) Another point to note is he’s likely to have some kind of a band, even if they only play in the car park (we don’t have that many garages here!) And no, if you think you like one musician and you’ll love the lot, you’re likely to be disappointed. It was a musician-boyfriend who pointed out the different personality types in a band. He said,

The lead guitarist is probably a charmer, the smooth talker, who gets in with all the babes. He’s the most visible one of course. The drummer is likely to be anti-social, which is why he prefers sitting behind the huge set up making big noise and not being disturbed by the world.

Ah, and what did my boyfriend do? He was the bass guitarist, easy-going and charming enough to be part of the ‘front’ but not so ambitious as to want to upstage the lead. I validate that as well as his observation of the rest of the band. Pick your musician with care.

The Traveller: Now this type is fairly fascinating for his multiple exposure. I’m however crossed by the sneaky suspicion that he views the world by a Marie Antoinette-esque viewpoint, oblivious to the idea that most people wouldn’t choose to live in shanties, dirty roads et al if they had a choice. Besides, you know what someone’s grandma said (mine didn’t, she wouldn’t have approved of dating!)…”Don’t fall in love with a traveller, I’ll tell you why, he’ll take you to the airport and kiss you goodbye.” Well, realistically speaking this is obviously a man who likes a change in scenery ever so often so what does that say about his stability? Debatable I know, but worth thinking about.

The Conoisseur: Oh god, how I hate/loathe/detest/abhor this type! His muse may be wine, fine art or literature. Whatever it is, you can be assured that you won’t be spared without a lesson at every opportunity. And no, don’t think it’ll work out well if you share the taste. The conoisseur is snobbish about his interest and it defines him. He’ll brook no competition and it will perpetually be a game of one-upmanship of who knows better. Blah, who gives a damn…I know I’ve wanted to stuff the grand interest in some extremely uncomfortable places.

The Couch Potato: Ah, the only real hobby that my generation has. It’s called the idiot box, darling, but the idiots sit outside it not inside. Nuff’ said.

The Monitor Maniac: Okay, this is a tad different from Couch Potato. The internet is a smorgasbord of delights after all. Gaming, chat, blogging and let’s not forget…porn. There’s a whole new world in there! So what’re you doing outside it, baby? Perhaps you met online. Chweet. Maybe you should keep it that way instead of trying to take it offline. ‘Never the twain shall meet. So forget about the “Do you think we should meet?” It spells doom for an online relationship in the exact same way that three other little words do on a real-world relationship.

The Gamer: As specifically different from Couch Potato and Monitor Maniac. Some things that should be warning signs. 1. He enjoys speeding, fighting and cussing. 2. He is thrilled by the idea of hitting a few buttons and changing lives. 3. His latest score defines how happy he is. Once again, he’s similar to the Conoisseur in that his interest governs his sense of self-worth and while he may seem to gravitate to you on the grounds of shared interest, he most certainly won’t brook any competition. Well, go battle it out over the joysticks if you like. I’ve thrown the damn lot out of the window with the remote control.

The Artist: Now this type I do like. Also unlike the Gamer/Conoisseur, there’s no such a thing as competition among those who love their art and are confident about it. If you share the interest, you might even learn something from each other. On the other hand, there is the temperament, weirdness and the addictions that build the stereotype. Ah well, roll me another joint baby…

The Sportsman: This one as different from the Gamer since he plays games in the real world, not on a computer/TV screen/mobile phone. I don’t actually know too many of this type, possibly since I gravitate to the more ‘heavy-head’ types. I imagine the guy would be quite pleasant if he played some sort of team sport though there’s the whole thing of his having way too many ‘boys’ nights out’. I’m mortally afraid (like every other woman) of the locker-room talk phenomena as well. But that’s unfair I guess, men gossip as a rule, behind lockers or water-coolers. On the other hand, this type is likely to be closer to the whole virile-brutal-masculine thought than his less ‘active’ counterparts. Well, if you can bear to live in ‘Oog hunt. Oog kill. Oog be number 1.’ land, then he’s the one for you. Besides he’ll come in useful if you’re faced by a gang of hooligans.

The Gastronome: I never know what to say to this type. I’m after all, someone who thinks that food is fuel to the body-machine and nothing more. Also, the typical Indian man who loves food is scandalised by the thought of a woman who doesn’t enjoy cooking and horrors, admits to it as well! Whatever on earth can be so interesting about eating? I’m flummoxed. But well, this man is probably the easiest to hook with the age-old wisdom of the way to a man’s heart being through his stomach. Hmm, just watch it with the oily snacks though, you don’t want that adage to refer to cholestrol and have him blame you for his deteriorating health.

The Chef: Yes, this type I am absolutely floored by. When a woman can go out and do things that men have been doing for years, what’s better than a man who comes in and does what we’ve been doing for years? A man who likes cooking is a big, big, big turn-on. Besides this is one interest he can’t fib about. 🙂

Have fun with the boys….just check in on how they’re having their fun!

Xena Was A Princess Too

Conversation with a colleague:

Him:

I think women (at work) come in two types. There are women like you – independent, strong-natured type…you know they aren’t going to burst into tears because you tell them you don’t like their work. Then there’s this other type you have to be careful around because you never know how they’ll react.

Just as an aside, I stayed in late at work last week and was travelling back after midnight when mum called to check where I was. The same person, with me, looked a trifle surprised and then remarked,

It’s just that, with girls like you, one gets the sense that you can take care of yourself and don’t need protection. Whereas with X, Y, Z…they’re like little kids, you know?

I suppose that in a world of princessess, some of us are Xena. But everybody has feelings and no one is completely invincible, you know?

Xena, holding her chakram

Xena, holding her chakram (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I'm every woman

More and more I find I can relate to women better than to men.
Women seem more like my kin than they ever did; and men finally really the ‘THEM’

I used to be a tomboy, fairly genderless inside my mind. Now I find I’ve come so far from there, I almost can’t relate to the male mind any more. While I will probably never be a princess, I’m a woman, undeniably.

It isn’t that I like every woman I meet, indeed not…but isn’t that so much like a woman too?! But my conversations with the women I like are generally so much deeper, richer, so much more meaningful and memorable than those with men. If once I actively loathed the company of women, I’ve come to love them now, dearly.

I went out with two women recently (very interesting people, may I add!). While I was ruminating over this very thought, one of them voiced the exact same thing. And a few minutes later, the third member of our party also made the same observation.

Each time I meet an old girlfriend or even a new one, I bring away with a fuller understanding of myself. There is validation, empathy, respect and support…..something I’ve sorely missed in all my interactions with men. Is it a fact that women are more nurturing? I validate that….I’m being healed the women in my life. They bring out the woman in me.

It’s almost like I’m learning to be a woman from other women. Or perhaps being reminded of my feminity by others just like me. Cheers, sistah, you make me even more me!

I’m Every Woman

More and more I find I can relate to women better than to men.
Women seem more like my kin than they ever did; and men finally really the ‘THEM’

I used to be a tomboy, fairly genderless inside my mind. Now I find I’ve come so far from there, I almost can’t relate to the male mind any more. While I will probably never be a princess, I’m a woman, undeniably.

It isn’t that I like every woman I meet, indeed not…but isn’t that so much like a woman too?! But my conversations with the women I like are generally so much deeper, richer, so much more meaningful and memorable than those with men. If once I actively loathed the company of women, I’ve come to love them now, dearly.

I went out with two women recently (very interesting people, may I add!). While I was ruminating over this very thought, one of them voiced the exact same thing. And a few minutes later, the third member of our party also made the same observation.

Each time I meet an old girlfriend or even a new one, I bring away with a fuller understanding of myself. There is validation, empathy, respect and support…..something I’ve sorely missed in all my interactions with men. Is it a fact that women are more nurturing? I validate that….I’m being healed the women in my life. They bring out the woman in me.

It’s almost like I’m learning to be a woman from other women. Or perhaps being reminded of my feminity by others just like me. Cheers, sistah, you make me even more me!

Little Girl With Big Dreams

I might have missed this news if Best Friend hadn’t told me about it. I was horrified. I knew her when she was still a starry-eyed teenager. She was one of those tall, slender girls who carry themselves straight-backed and everyone else thinks they’re being snooty. But she wasn’t. She was easy to like and talk to. We didn’t have a lot in common but I remember our conversations well enough. I always thought of her as a little girl with big dreams.

We lost touch at some point of time but I heard she’d gotten engaged, married, shifted to Russia and had a baby. And then Alesia Raut passed out of my consciousness except for a brief wondering thought on what happened to the little girl’s dreams. I assumed that they had turned into goals and ambitions just as she had turned adult. Just like the rest of us.

And then now this. I’m shell-shocked. Of course I’ve talked about abuse before here but it isn’t something you get used to hearing about. Not the least of all, when it happens to someone you know.

I actually started a post about it and then it just passed into my Drafts folder and I figured the world was just getting on by itself. Then this morning, I chanced upon this article as well. And I knew I just had to say something.

Are men getting more abusive? I don’t think so. Crimes against women are just getting more coverage. Womenpower is fashionable whether you like it or not. Women are putting up with less, we are better informed of our rights and the options open to us.

Are men keeping up with it? Well, every single day the newspaper carries stories of violence against women. In the past few weeks I’ve read of men murdering their wives under suspicion of adultry, harassment at work, dowry deaths, lovers’ tiffs ending in homicide.

Even if it isn’t tangible physical violence, there’s emotional bruising. Trying to force-fit a human being into your image of what you think perfect is, isn’t just impossible, it’s wrong, it’s unfair, it is deeply traumatic to the person you’re doing it to. And finally punishing them for failing..is unpardonable. I’m not even sorry that the women in such situations over-correct and go out on a male-bashing rampage. Nature corrects itself.

I told my mother last night that women today may not be great but the men weren’t even keeping up with the times. We certainly are harder, more ruthless than our earlier counterparts. Enough said about trauma and the un-healable scars. Let me just end by saying no woman is born a bitch. But growing up in a world full of dogs and wolves waiting to tear our dreams apart…we just learn to survive.

A little girl starts off with big dreams that get kicked all over the place. She buries them in order to live the life she’s been told, of being a lady, of pleasing men. Then one day, tired of being kicked around, she decides that no one treats a lady this way so she doesn’t need to be a lady anymore.

So she starts off again, armed with her big dreams. Innocence lost, there’s nothing sweet about her, there’s only ruthlessness born of painful disappointement. No wonder the world fears a feminist.

The mummy returns

Even after my own parents throw up their hands in despair at my marital status (or the lack of it) and stop bugging me, there are others who will persist, good intentions intact. The results are sometimes howl-a-rious. See here:

Surrogate momma: What happened to that boy in Bangalore?

Me: Who, Dee? He’s still in Bangalore.

Surrogate momma: You should marry him!

Me: NOoooo!!!!

Surrogate momma: I think you like him!

Me: I do! That’s why we are friends.

Surrogate momma: So tell him that you like him!

Me: Why? He already knows.

Surrogate momma: No, you tell him “I like you”. Then he’ll say “I love you” back. And then you can get married!

Oh dear, who will tell her that saying “I like you” to a man is likely to have the exact opposite effect and send him running miles away from you. And what’s more….that he probably thinks that the very mention of the word ‘marriage’ is adequate basis for certification to an institution (the asylum type, not the marriage type!)

Then there’s always my dear friend-turned-mother-hen (Mother Goose, silly goose?) whose number one goal in life these days is to land a husband. Which objective she pursues with single-minded dedication. Except she does it by trying to convince me (?) to get married. First thing in the morning she buzzes…

Mother Hen: So, why don’t you call X?

Me: Now? Why?

Mother Hen: Why not? Yeh kal kal karte karte train nikal jaayegi!

Me: No, I managed to get it on time. That’s how I got here.

Mother Hen: No stupid woman. You better hook the guy or you’ll lose him.

Me: Darling, I hate to be the bearer of bad news but we broke up ages ago.

Mother Hen: So? You know how men are!

Me: I do?

Mother Hen: Yeah, full of themselves, never willing to admit they were wrong. So you go back and call him!

Me: And say what?

Mother Hen: That you want to meet.

Me: But I don’t want to meet!

Mother Hen: Settle down, woman. It’s high time. You’ll be much happier.

Me: I am happy right now. We should go man-hunting for you.

Mother Hen: I think I’m not the settling down type.

Me: Then why do you want to get married?

Mother Hen: So I have someone I can come home to.

Me: What’s wrong with your TV?

Mother Hen: That’s not enough.

Me: Oh for…! Why don’t you call Y then?

Mother Hen: No way! I don’t want to go back to him.

Me: My point, precisely.

Mother Hen: Arre, but thats different. I think X is perfect.

Me: Then you get married to him!

Mother Hen: Me? No way, can’t stand him!

Presumably this is the ‘It’s a crummy job but someone’s gotta do it so go hook him!’ school of thought. I steal quietly away to my boring-but-blissfully single existance away from mummies and their bandages for my supposedly ailing heart.

Course catalogue

Okay, okay so I’m too hot-headed in my opinions. Hear it from someone who says it with far more panache! But S, do men EVER learn???

Single-itis

Mayank Shekhar bemoans the plight of the single urban male in Mumbai today in an article that’s interestingly titled ‘Suffering single-it is!’

Everybody loves a single woman: The world donates her affection, attention, drinks, dinner, coffee, Orkut scraps….she gifts them hope. Nobody loves a single man, not even the single man himself, and least of all the bouncer outside the bar!

While his dig at the ‘donations’ my ilk get makes me fume, I guess by my own logic, I can afford to be generous. His species really does appear to be getting a rough deal. Tch, tch, poor things. And I don’t imagine views like the ones on this blog make it any easier for the critters. No, it is true, I ain’t being sarcastic for a change.

When I break up with one of my late20s/30ish boyfriends, amidst the agony and anger is the realization that heck, I have a lot more options than the guy does! We’re both young (well young enough), smart, fun, friendly, attractive and freshly single. But unlike the unlucky protagonists of SATC, I live in Mumbai not New York. And the ratio of single members of the opposite sex is skewed in my favour. 🙂

The music video for "Material Girl" ...

The music video for “Material Girl” (left) was inspired by Marilyn Monroe’s “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend” (right), from the 1953 film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Besides I can afford to savour the delights of being that much-debated personality – a single Modern Woman. While a man can be a convenience, an amusement and even a sex object, he isn’t anymore a vital necessity to my existence or even my happiness. I can well have a social life, fun with a lot of men (if I so choose!) than misery with one (okay, fun with a single one). Heck, I can have as many girls’ nights outs as I want, even if I claim to be homosexual, I’ll still not lose out on male attention (isn’t it a fact that lesbianism is one of the greatest male fantasies?)

When I decide a boyfriend is starting to cramp my style, I can very well decide to ‘go underground’ for a while, can choose to ‘concentrate on my career’ and if all else fails, can beg off from the social circuit citing ‘family pressures’. Oh and I don’t even need to go out actively searching for the opposite sex. My family will do it for me, well-meaning friends will match-make and the men themselves will present themselves for inspection. Ha! The mountain will come to Mohemad so to speak so IdeaSmith can afford to be lazy.

Hmm, I’m smug, aren’t I? I ‘gift the world hope’ after all, so I can afford to be more than hopeful!!!!! If I had had a choice in the matter I would never have chosen to be born a woman. After all, who would willingly want to live as a second-class citizen all their lives….but you’ve heard that rant already here. If I had to be born a woman, there was never a better time or place to do so. Amen to that.

Pin-up Lolita

I’ve seen her in three movies – Woh Lamhe, Gangster and the gawdawful Life in a Metro. All three times her wobbly tongued-accent and nightmarish acting skills grated on me. But each time I see her on a hoarding, I have to admit, she catches the eye. What is it about her? She isn’t beautiful. But there is something beyond physical perfection. Is it the almost womanhood/still girlishness? The troubled confusion of adolescence not matured as yet? Lolita-esque is how I described her and then it made sense.

There was a brief clamour over the sexy Jiah Khan. I didn’t watch the movie and her pictures don’t give her Kangana’s appeal. I guess Kangana has the advantage of a few movies more, all of which have served to establish her as the quintessential child-woman in our minds. Ever notice how she only plays troubled characters? Gangster saw her alcoholic self stumbling on a kerb, crumbling in a heap and being rescued by Hashmi. Then Woh Lamhe gave us the wide-eyed terror of a schizophrenic, all being soothed away by Shiney. And finally Metro shows us slit writs and incessant smoking over the troublesome older man-lover. Always suicidal. Oh and the wild hair and slender, unblemished legs help.

kangana-ranaut.jpg

The men drool. But why the sudden fascination for a flawed woman, a not-even-quite-woman yet? What’s this craze with Lolitas all of a sudden? I keep hearing about the child-woman everyone’s falling in love with, the nubile nymphet that no one can resist and the charms of ‘that girl’ who’s just a child really.

Child-woman. Hmm. I don’t loathe that description as much as Princess but it does seem a step away from BabyDoll (which is really a glorified fantasy of a paedophile when you think about it). This isn’t quite that young. Slightly older, well old enough for a full figure anyway but also young enough that the bare knees and occasional revealed cleavage seem unconscious. Brash and fiery, yes, but in a way that makes one want to protect her. From herself? Ah, how endearing.

At one level she is probably the female counterpart of the Bad Boy. However, unlike the Bad Boy to the woman who loves him, the flawed child-woman does not pose any danger to the man who is captivated by her. Except perhaps the loss of his heart. So the one kind of woman he trusts he can give his heart to now, is the one who won’t toy with it….well, not intentionally at least. But isn’t it kind of dangerous to give something fragile and precious to a little child? And one prone to getting into trouble that is…

While I have nothing at the moment against innocence and purity or even the sweet mischief that adolescent sexual fantasy is….it just makes me wonder whether this is another indication of the Modern Man seeking reprieve from his now-too-smart female counterpart…..and turning to a woman who will be one of those someday but not just yet. Today he can protect her, aspire to her admiration and adoration…and perhaps receive the ego validation his now-counterpart refuses to give him. Is that what the child-woman is about? I wonder.

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