Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Writer as Cuckoo - a Lonely Bird

Oh if only I could write without disturbance. I read this piece by a lazy writer on which went viral recently. He is a bit laid back and a little out of confidence. He wants to be writer, but for providence sake can't figure out how. Naturally, this happens to almost all writers. There are frequent blackouts and mundane things that intervene in the process of creative cogitation and writing. And then we lose track of our writing, continuity is lost. That's why I am mostly struggling to write this blog, to keep things going.

Quite naturally! Hm.

So, for that space and time when one can write. People write well early in the morning, or, so it is said. But I am late morning person. I believe in early to bed and late to wake up, and I am not an insomniac, mind you. I have fast and good sleep through the night, yet I can't wake up at say six or even seven. Nine is wake up time for me, when the cuckoo is singing its sweet song - these days - outside my window.

I think we writers are like cuckoos, really. Yesterday, on my morning round, I sat close to a tree, on a bough of which was a cuckoo. It was a lonely sight, all alone, no one for company, a dark bird, shy of human beings, seasonal in its appearance. I think writers are like cuckoos. They sing melodiously, and then they disappear from the scene, for whatever reasons, only God knows! And, they, too, sing a lonely song. And, they, too, are treacherous birds, laying eggs in the crow's nest.

Good! Writers need to be less like cuckoos, but I am not complaining! 

John is @johnwriter on Twitter and John.Matthew on Facebook. He blogs here. His Youtube Channel Page. His novel Mr. Bandookwala, M.B.A., Harvard.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Fwd: Some Encounters in Long-distance Trains

A couple of strange encounters in trains the past few days had me, dazed, or, flabbergasted, which is a word I don't like. But, anyway, here it is.

On the journey to Kerala to attend wifey's mother's funeral we travelled by the superfast express Durondo. Our co-passengers were a very strange group. Strange in the sense they kept eating tobacco all the time and making fun of other co-passengers in their language. Now what was that language? I didn't know a word of it. Usually my antenna is sharp in recognizing languages, and, I can say with pride I recognize most languages of India. But this beat me. So, I assumed it must be Sinhala or some other language. They were a rough bunch and looked like laborers of the Persian Gulf from their habits. They also frequently went to the toilet, may be, to drink, who knows. You may know that I had a stint in Saudi and I could recognize them, just like that. They were in a group and knew there was no one to challenge their bad habits and brashness. Therefore, they did a lot of unacceptable things like talking well into the night, not switching off the lights, waking up too late, and then making fun of co-passengers and laughing. It was drunken brash behavior. I was thoroughly depressed by their attitude, but I kept quiet, as I was outnumbered and I had my wife to think about. She was in a tender state of shock and any disturbance would further affect her equipoise. So I said nothing. Silence is best resorted to in such situations. Of course, it's their choice to travel but Durondo or any other train, but couldn't they be more civil?

On the way back we had only sleeper accommodation in the train. There were a bunch of carpenters returning after installing some furniture in Kerala. They also exhibited the same characteristics as the above alluded group. I guess, when they are in groups Indians (like political activists) thing they can do anything. May be I am growing old, but, I don't remember having seen such behavior in my fifty-odd years of travelling in trains.

Yeah, I think it's the growing old thing. People are banding together for security. Soon, will polarization along various lines result? Or, are we already polarized? 

John is @johnwriter on Twitter and John.Matthew on Facebook. He blogs here. His Youtube Channel Page. His novel Mr. Bandookwala, M.B.A., Harvard.