Sunday, November 08, 2009

Om Prakash Aditya

I am a great fan of Om Prakash Aditya. He was a great hindi poet and satirist. A master of laughter in the pre-cable days, he commanded great admiration at DD on the regularly broadcast "Hasya Kavi Sammelan".

Remembering him I got to know that he passed away some six months ago in an accident! May God rest his soul in peace.

Some lines from a poem of is the lamentation of a student about the vast course syllabus.

नास हो इतिहास का, सन के समंदर बह गए,
मर गए वो लोग, रोने के लिए हम रह गए,
बाबर, हुमायूँ, शाहजहाँ, और अकबर आप था,
कौन न जाने किसका बेटा, कौन किसका बाप था!

ज़िन्दगी भर लिख न पाया मैं चेकोस्लोवाकिया

अंक के  अतिरिक्त  मुझको  और  कुछ  भाता  नहीं,
क्या  करूँ लेकिन  गुणा करना  मुझे  आता  नहीं,
अकल अल-जब्रा  हमारी  जाएगी  जड़  से  पचा,
तीन  मैं  से  छह गए  और  क्या  बाकी  बचा?

भुगूल  में  गत  वर्ष  आया  गोल  है  कैसे  धरा,
और  मैंने  एक  पल  मैं  लिख  दिया  उत्तर  खरा,
गोल  है  पूरी  कचोरी, और पापड़  गोल  है, 
गोल  है  लड्डू, जलेबी, रसगुल्ला भी  गोल  है,
गोलगप्पा  गोल  है  मुंह  भी  हमारा  गोल  है  
इस  लिए  हे मास्टरजी  यह  धरा  भी  गोल  है.

Childhood fantasies

Some things never die. When we were young, there used to be this popular belief amongst us kids that one could make an eraser from pencil shavings. My brother and I were serious subscribers to this strange alchemy experiment. Once our mother got us a new box of pencils (yipee!) and we dutifully sharpened it away  completely to gather the wooden shavings. The scolding was unbelievable!

I had forgotten all about my belief in this Indian Alchemy till recently. My brother has told me that his son and daughter are the latest proponents of this idea. When the son was quizzed (he is elder) as to where did he get to learn such nonsense, he replied, "मेरे दोस्त ने स्कूल में बताया था!"

I think this is a kind of rumour that gets handed down from one generation to the next! If you have any rumours of your to share, please do comment.

Chappal Saathi

Sometimes, we use a thing due to habit, it becomes second nature. We are dependent on it for our comfort. If we are away from it, a strange emptiness nags at the back of the mind. It is difficult to wean oneself away from such habits.

Happened with me in the case of a pair of slippers. I purchased this leather pair from a shop near my home. It was super comfy and I was hooked. Alas it did not last forever and was in tatters some 2 years later (What else do you expect from footwear that I would have worn to bed, had not my wife given me that look). I went to the same shop for another pair but he told me that it was not available any longer! I refused to part with my old pair and continued to wear it, despite my wife's remonstrations and threats.

I was in a mall one day and saw someone else wearing the same pair. My heart jumped for secret joy! Gathering courage, I went up to the chap and asked him very sheepishly about where he got that pair. The chap gave me the biggest of the smiles and mentioned the same shop I had purchased them from. When I recounted my failed mission to purchase another pair from that shop, he responded, "यार बात तो है इस चप्पल में...मैं भी ढूंढ रहा हूँ! मिले तो बताना!" When I told my wife about my "Encounter with the Stranger in the Mall", she burst out laughing and said, "वो आपका चप्पल साथी हुआ!"

I am still searching. I found a comparable pair and was compelled to throw my old pair, but alas, the new ones don't match it so far.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Sajan Re Jhooth Mat Bolo

The simple lyrics, the deeply meaningful words, the gentle sway of the folk music and the amazing cinematography of this song make it one of my favourites!

Monday, November 02, 2009


Oh when I sneeze
I want the world to know
And in Facebook I’ve found
The means make it so

When I scratch my face
My friends must be informed
Privacy has lost the war
Another bastion stormed

When I wipe my butt
And the paper is 2-ply
Everyone must learn
What, when and why

When the weather is sunny
The word must go out
And when it is cloudy
My Facebook must shout

When the kids are naughty
I must share my woe
And when they are nice
The world must surely know

My life’s an open (Face)book
Though nothing’s worth a read
But everyone knows my moods
Everyone knows my needs

And of course, I can ‘like’
And I can ‘nudge’ and ‘poke’
It gives me a definite high
Much higher than coke

I am constantly in touch
With people far and wide
All hear every word
All hear every aside

So, keep on writing, folk
I need my fix for sure
I am now picking my nose
Thought you'd like to know
– Kishore Asthana