Reading old stuff

Most of my evening today was spent reading old journals that I finally got my hands on. They were all stashed away at F’s for safekeeping because every now and then my mother decides to ruin her life and walk into my room and eventually find something – Anything – an old movie ticket stub, bills from some resort, an old letter, kuch bhi; that will leave her feeling like her uterus dropped down to the basement and died. Because I came from bloody there no? The uterus, I mean. Not the basement. So to avoid this tragedy, I had given away all my journals to F because they were all about him anyway. Let’s not even get to the fact that he hasn’t read any one of those journals that are all about him and me and all the romantic goof shit that I was made of a couple of years ago.

I realised a whole lot of things from reading all that today.

1) That I was a far more regular writer then and a lot better also.(Even though I say so myself) And maybe why I was better was because I wrote like freaking everyday.

2) The life threatening problems that I had a year ago are laughable today. Just goes on to say how pointlessly serious I take myself and my life. And that eventually, whether or not I am prepared, time heals everything.

3) I was very stupid.
Back there I found some stuff about myself. That I wrote. With my own bloody hands. That I never want found out. By anyone. Not even after I die.

4) I was a dick head to assume that I would never change and that what were priorities in my life about 3 years ago would be my priorities forever.

5) I Trusted too much and too many people.

6) I was in touch with myself a lot more than I am today.

Which only means, I need to write more and write everyday.

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.

When Vargas Llosa gave me orgasms.

                                       Some sections from ‘The notebooks of Don Rigoberto’ that gave me multiple orgasms.

“And ever since she was a girl, Dona Lucrecia had felt a fascination for standing on the edge of the cliff and looking down into the abyss, for keeping her balance on the railing at the side of the bridge”

So Rigoberto is going nutty after Lucrecia left so he has this whole different routine where he wakes up really early in the morning to read his old notes and books by his favourite authors. He is doing some such thing one morning and begins to miss Lucrecia terribly after reading this bit of Neruda.

“And to see you urinate, in the dark, at the back of the house, as if you were pouring out a slender, tremulous, silvery, obstinate stream of honey, I would give up, many times over, this choir of shades I possess and the clang of useless swords that echoes in my soul…” – Widower’s Tango, Neruda

“Without transition he caught a glimpse of Lucrecia sitting on the toilet, and listened to the merry splash of her pee in the bottom of the bowl that received it with tinkling gratitude”

If I ever go into coma or am dying or anything, just read these words to me and I shall come flying back to life, full of love and libido.

“Lucrecia also shat, and this, rather than degrading her, enhanced her in his eyes and nostrils”

I had often wondered if good literature includes descriptions of bodily functions – nose digging, bowel movements, passing urine, inserting buds into the ear, scratching body parts which shouldn’t even be acknowledged in public et al. And after Llosa I have happily arrived at the conclusion that that kind of literature is probably the only kind that I enjoy reading the most. I also felt really happy at the thought of marrying him, having his babies and having him write about all my bodily functions.

I had the best time reading the whole nose cleansing procedure in “In praise of the stepmother”

“The magnificent Lucrecia understood everything. Nothing in the tangled labyrinth of human desires shocked her”

And now for the section that taught me what words do and how they become stories. Big, I know but as I was reading this bit, I started to register some words that were used and noticed that if I removed them, the whole damn section would suck. I noticed adjectives and the words that follow the adjectives.  Here –

“The novel is constructed with deceptive simplicity, beneath which a dramatic context is depicted: the merciless struggle between reality and desire, those sisters who are bitter enemies separated by impassable distances except in the miraculous recesses of the human spirit”

I have no idea what shit is being talked about here. All I know is this passage taught me something. And something really valuable. In some sense, more than teaching me how to write, this passage taught me how to read words. I looked at all the adjectives and suddenly all writing seemed to make a whole different kind of sense to me.

“Pornography strips eroticism of its artistic content, favours the organic over the spiritual and mental, as if the central protagonists of desire and pleasure were phalluses and vulvas and these organs not mere servants to the phantoms that govern our souls, and segregates physical love from the rest of human experience”

Wait for it.

Pornographer, while for you the only thing that counts when you make love is the same thing that counts for a dog, a monkey, or a horse- that is, to ejaculate – Lucrecia and I, go on, envy us, also make love when we are having breakfast, dressing, talking with friends, and contemplating the clouds or the sea”

I rest my fucking case.

Rigoberto has been the most complicated reading experience for me. After a point I got so impatient with the complexity of the book and my own cluelessness over what to read and how, I entered panic attack mode and had many restless nights. I cried because I wasn’t able to finish the book. I cried because I was a slow and pathetic reader. I cried because I wasn’t able to figure out if I hated Fonchito with every fibre of my being or if I wanted to hump him senseless for being a child sex bomb. Having said that and perhaps because of all that, Rigoberto will always be my most treasured reading experience.

I would like to go back to the book again very soon and this time around, if I cry it will be because I have fallen hopelessly in love with Llosa.