Freud

There are many ways to begin this story.

I will pick the one that happened 5 minutes ago.

Five minutes ago, I was in my kitchen, wondering why I never turn the kitchen lights off when I know I’m going to come back soon. When I come home, I drink water – hot, usually. But I drink water. I put on the kettle but hate waiting around for it to become hot. So I go into my room to change, all the while, hoping dad doesn’t come out of his room to yell at me for leaving the lights on in the kitchen. Then I race my way down to the kitchen , take my hot water and then race back up again to secure my place in front of the desktop.

When I turn the kitchen lights off, it’s a signal to the house. The day has ended. Nobody’s coming down.

In K today, I read Kundera and drew long, delightful comparisons between what I found in his book and my god damned life. It helped that I was consumed by 2 glasses of white rum. It made things more fascinating than it might have been.

Kundera says:

In the love poetry of every age, the woman longs to be weighed down by the man’s body. The heaviest of burdens is therefore simultaneously an image of life’s most intense fulfillment.

A single metaphor can give birth to love.

The only relationships that can make both partners happy is one in which sentimentality has no place and neither partner makes any claim on the life and freedom of the other.

***

I spoke to 6 students today about their writing, each time feeling a lot like I was actually talking to myself. L wrote a fascinating piece about learning and unlearning Telugu. A is worried because she can only write in second person these days. U has a shy smile of an 8 year old who has just learnt to wash his own clothes. It was oddly gratifying to talk to him. S and I talked about fiction and I promised to give her my borrowed copy of The Illicit Happiness of Other People. N came running to me the minute she’d finished reading the Illicit Happiness because she couldn’t deal with life. I’m familiar with the feeling. We had a conversation about the book. She is writing about it. D wrote a funny piece about a PT master from school who convinced her that Srilanka was right next to Jalahalli.

Sometimes, I am overwhelmed by the stories that surround me. So many stories, I am not really sure where to begin and how to begin anymore. Their stories particularly, leave me thinking about my own for a long time.

Back home, Bubbly was sitting by her laptop wondering why her codes don’t match. In class today, I screened The Rocket for II year students. I  had a great time watching it again. It brought back some fond memories. From the last time it was screened and the time before that. When it rained in the movie, I thought about the good old Freud and what he said.

I wish Biffes would hurry. I need me some new movies.

It is 11:52 pm now. I am wondering if I’ll be able to pull off my 5:00 am writing tomorrow.

Pah.

Sex, dirt and other Freudian fantasies

I like waking up to a room full of mess. It is sadly reassuring because I know exactly what I am going to be doing with my morning. Too bad I don’t normally wake up to filth. But let’s say I did, that would be my ultimate sex fantasy. Picture a pair of clean, naked feet trying to grope for slippers under the bed only to feel a plate of curd. Now you curse and step on a crushed bottle, now you open your eyes to the dismal yet liberating view of papers everywhere, books lying open and scattered, clothes all out of the closet, and the bathroom, a pigsty.

Now picture the slow, almost orgasmic uncluttering of all this, breathing in every moment of objects cleaned, of spaces washed, of clothes arranged and rearranged, of books carefully organised randomly, of cursing the tragic lack of hangers and of fresh synonyms of high that only a bottle of Lizol pine fresh can bring to your bathroom. 

An ink pot lies broken and you watch with horror and amusement as the tsunami of royal blue ink begins to decorate your marble flooring. It’s a beauteous sight. Deep blue against pure white. You take an even whiter cloth and try to absorb some of the magic from the floor. The dustbin looks cheerful to be accommodating half the room’s wealth. You peel old and stinking bed spreads from its partner and dump it into the washing machine. Two rinses plus one for the nice smelling clothes conditioner. You watch as the mini waterfall begins to envelope dirty sheets. Dump three spoons of Surf and watch the merry go round of dirt squeezing itself out and into the soap. It is oddly gratifying to watch dirt coming out. Almost soul cleansing.

The red bed sheet you have chosen today is perfect for a Sunday morning. Clearly, the sun is brighter on Sundays. The red stretches its canvas out as you spread it on your bed, it yawns now before claiming all 4 corners of the bedpost. The sunlight sleeps on the red now, bouncing its long golden ladders on the pillow. Proud as you are of your room’s giant ventilation, you make your way towards the windows to see the dust off. They sit there like they always have, in books and in movies, of ancient times and recent. A bottle of Colin apparates into your hands. As it hisses open a fresh batch of spray, you can smell the air of clean, knocking out that intoxicating smell of dust.

Now you move to your cupboard. All your tees are neatly folded and kept far away from the main clothes – those that you wear everyday. Your sweaters are hung neatly, all the hanger points facing the same way, color coordinated and all. You open the windows to let Sunday inside. A new pack of incense sticks – sandalwood this time and soon you see wafts of sandalwood inviting more of Sunday morning inside.

You save the party project for last. That bottle of yellow Lizol lemon and bits of surf excel to give the commode a thorough, warm, and fuzzy wash. 

Satisfied but not thoroughly yet, you leave a kettle of water on the stove for that first cup of tea. And now the little cherub of an orgasm peeps at you from the clean corners of your room as you embrace the day.

What would Uncle Freud say?

To Ashish

I started writing because I wanted to hide from my mother. I needed a space that could be only mine, that nobody wanted because they didn’t know it existed. It gave me some kind of thrill to hide when I was wanted the most. I treasured those moments when I could just hide and watch them look for me. To not be seen when they were frantically looking for you gives you some kind of sadistic authority over yourself and your space. Some similar kind of thrill was transferred onto that moment when I first wrote a full sentence. For those kind souls who do read my blog, you may remember a boy named ‘Ashish’ that I mentioned in a post titled ‘Poof’. For all the times I have fallen in and out of love with god knows how many people, I remember Ashish very well. He was chubby (just the way I like ’em even to this day) and had brown, wavy hair. In all that time that I was in love with him, he must have glanced at my direction once, maybe twice. We never talked to each other.

So him and Rashmi (also a girl I was in love with) were friends and it seemed like he spent all of his life with her. This drove me insane one evening and I wanted terribly to do something about it. I did the only thing that I felt like doing. I wanted to write “I hate you Ashish” hoping it would help me out of feeling lost and small. And where did I write this bit? On a wall in my Mother’s bedroom. I don’t know why I picked her room. I didn’t really pick actually. I remember I had a red pen in my hand and I was in her room and I just walked up to the wall and wrote it. In awfully small font. So small that even if everyone in the world would overlook it, my mother would read it. Because I wrote it and it was THAT small so she had to know what I was hiding (?) from her no?

The woman bawled my name out soon as she read it demanding to know why I had written what I had written. I remember feeling terrified when I had to explain it  to her. So I made up some gibberish and ran away. That may have just been the first of the many ‘Explain yourself’ encounters I was going to have with my mother in future. But I remember feeling devilishly happy because I had managed to piss her off. That episode triggered so much pleasure in me that I decided to keep a journal in some freudian hope that she would read it and be annoyed.

That’s how and why I found writing. It became my most sought out hiding place and promised me guilty pleasures like hiding and watching someone looking for me, hiding and watching someone read what I have written and other such nonsense. Eventually, writing has helped me move closer to the woman I want to become, even though I don’t know who the hell that is.