Sunday, 25 December 2011

merry k*ristmas

Sometimes wishing is all you can do.

Peace on earth, and good will to all men (and women!)
Merry Christmas everyone. I'll be seeing you more in this new year. I promise.
Remember to pay it forward...


Friday, 23 December 2011

sometimes you're lucky

A new trend I've adopted... Stating how "sometimes", just sometimes, you're lucky. It started as a Facebook status and has grown into a daily mantra. Just a moment to ponder on them. So I've begun to collect them on here.. Perhaps will post an update every once in a while.

sometimes you're lucky. like when you find a parking spot right next to your work.

sometimes you're lucky. like when you're headed the same way the motorcade is.

sometimes you're lucky. like when the dj plays a song you love that no one really plays.

sometimes you're lucky. like when you can actually remember why there's a red helium balloon floating in your car.

sometimes you're lucky. like when your companion in the car is a silent red balloon, and that's exactly what you need.

sometimes you're lucky. like when you find what you looking for right before you give up.

sometimes you're lucky. like when it's so sunny in december you have to wear your dad's sunglasses.

sometimes you're lucky. like when your friend keeps gummy bears in the fridge for you because she knows you love that.

sometimes you're lucky. like when you just about miss that huge pile of dog crap in your path.

sometimes you're lucky. like when you wake up early and you know you're going to get things done.

sometimes you're lucky. but not when you wake up from a weird dream, and have one thing on your mind.

sometimes you're lucky. like when you're at a pink floyd gig. even if it is a cover band. ♥

sometimes you're lucky. but you're not sure how yet.

sometimes you're lucky. but you're not sure why yet.

sometimes you're lucky. but sometimes others are just luckier.

sometimes you're lucky. well, and sometimes you're just not.

Monday, 5 September 2011

for those with trouble sleeping

I remember sleeping to this only a few years ago when I was in London working.
It helped me when I needed it the most.

I had the Stacey Kent version on repeat running on my laptop till i fell asleep, and awoke with my laptop battery drained and a misty feeling in my eyes.

It isn't far to hushabye mountain.
and your boat awaits by the quay...

Click the video

and this is the Gilmour version

Sweet dreams

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Birthday Letter 2011

I didn't need a reminder this year.

I've been wanting to write you for the past few months. I've been waiting to write you for the past few months.
I even considered writing you a letter and then publishing it on the 6th, so that it coincides with your birthday, but I thought that would be sort of cheating.

This year has been tough so far.
And I'm angry.

I'm angry at you for the first time I think. I'm angry for you leaving.
I miss you differently this year. It's not like you are a romantic idea anymore. It's like I want to tell you, the joke is over, it's time for you to come back now.

And the dreams only confirm this sentiment.

The dreams I've been having baba, the ones of you of course, are always the same. It's almost to a degree where the dream becomes a favoured reality. I always dream that you are away on business, or travelling, and in my dream, you have just returned. And in most dreams, I am upset because you have been away too long.
In the last dream, i'm at the airport picking you up, and I tell you that mum has not been herself, and that she's been on edge and upset and in a lousy mood since you've been away, and that you can't leave us like that anymore.

I always wake up with a sunken heart.
I always need a minute to realise that I haven't been at the the airport, that you aren't on a plane, that you are not coming back.
And so I'm angry. I'm angry at you, goddamit.
And with the anger, destructive thoughts come around. And I wonder if you fought hard enough to stay. If maybe I had battled my way into ICU to see you against your wishes, if that would have been enough to keep you fighting. To keep you here.
I wonder if you just chose to rest.

But then again, that's not the reason I'm angry. I'm just angry that you left. Not how, when, or why.
And yes, I suppose my dream was right when it portrayed me telling you about mama. Because no, she's still not ok.

And I try. I'm impatient, and sometimes I'm rude. And sometimes I'm hurtful. I even can be downright cruel. But I no longer have control of the fuses related to her. Sometime I lose it. I really do. I no longer can see the light once we get into that big black tunnel. Sometimes she strings out the words that come out of her mouth in a way she does not realise destroy me somewhere, even a small part. Sometimes the words, or more correctly the lack of them, comes out so sharp, it cannot but graze me.

Maybe it's not her fault . Maybe I've changed. Probably I've changed.
And i just need peace. I need a bit of margins to breathe in. I feel suffocated by everything in the real world, and sometimes I don't understand how mama doesn't understand that I am off battling these dragons and working hard and living hard. And at the same time, I know her fears. I know her attachment.
And I guess maybe part of my anger at you is that. You leaving caused a misbalance that she specifically either refuses to see, and is suffering the consequences of, or cannot balance out. In either case, it's not something good. I can no longer see misery. In any amount. That too, has made me angry.

The thought of moving out to my own place has more or less crystalized. I need to move out i think. Not because of anything in particular, but I think for the past couple of years I've become a whole person on my own, in every sense of the word. I want to pay my bills, I want to decorate my own space, I want to be able to wake up in the morning and fall asleep at night the way I feel I want to. And most importantly it would do wonders to my relationship with mama. I think the space would do us well. I'm sure of that in fact. I just hope she sees it that way, and not that I am running away.

it's been a stressful, tiring, thought provoking year on many a level. And still it drags on.
I am always working. I am always worried, and I am always waiting for things to turn the right side up.
I'm working 3 jobs, between the office with Rana, the freelancing and work with Saadi and other people, and the DJing, I have come to realise I can no longer breathe. I don't have weekends, I am always thinking of work even in the back of my head, and I have this weight of over responsibility, that by me stopping to watch TV for a bit, or go have dinner with friends or with Jose, it will suffer. That I'm slacking off.

That weight of induced over responsibility is so heavy...

Once again, I've reached that point that I'm sure, now more than ever, is heridetary.
That point when I feel I am not establishing myself. That i am wasting time doing what I should not be doing by working for someone. And as for what should be done, what I should be achieving, I'm not 100 percent sure I know that yet... But I see the light. I should be doing somethign that fulfills me, and I have not reached that yet. I guess I'm not destined to work in an office. I want my own space, with the etching roller, and a silkscreen area, so I can spend my life making prints of all sorts of graphics and words and worlds.

I want to sit and carve into and paint onto and print over and cut out and stitch up and all of that.
I want to draw and illustrate and design my own projects, my own products, my own ideas.
I want to write, layout, print and publish.

So why am I not doing that... I'm not sure. Fear I suppose, that I won't succeed. That I won't be able to sustain myself. That I'm over confident of what I can do. That I will procrastinate and get lazy.
So what do I do? I want you to tell me...


At least I've started one project hands on... The one I promised myself I'd start ever since I found those photos you had tucked away on the lower shelf in your office. That book will come out. Rain or shine. And soon. Just as soon as i can free myself from the binds of stressful work loads...

I'm sorry if this year, the letter is heavy. I'm sure you understand.
I wish you were here more and more, maybe because I feel I need you. Does that make it selfish?
I realise more and more, everyone is really, truly on their own. Whether to fight that by always being around others, or whether you succumb to it gracefully I am still to discover. But everyone somehow, is alone. And that makes the longing even harder.

Happy birthday baba. I love you very very much.
Till next year.

Please visit my dreams more often, but stay.

Bintak Karma

Birthday letter 2010
Birthday letter 2009

Friday, 27 May 2011

Solitaire sanctuary

Suddenly, there's Solitaire.

I havent played solitaire in a really long time. And then suddenly, it's in my life again.
It's not as tangible as I used to play it. This time it's on my blackberry. Shameful.

But, nonetheless, it's back. The 12 royal disciples watch as I line them up with clicks and cursors, ever teaching me that opposites attract and that things pile up in chaos but end in order.

I remember when my mother used to shuffle her deck of cards, murmuring a wish under her breath over and over, in the tradition that if the cards played out right, they would magically charm fate into fulfilling it. She would sometimes go on for a couple of hours, shuffling and reshuffling in a ritual that on one hand gave her hope, and on the other the patience and perseverance to follow through till she had a promise of a wish fulfilled by the energies that lay in paper with worn rounded edges.

It was calming even to see her lay the cards out in 7 coloumns, in increasing degrees, flipping card after card pausing to see if the one in her hand could land anywhere helpful. She would go on and on, on the same wish till it "opened up" in front of her.

(does this mean our fate and wishes are in our own hands?)

And so, I'm back to solitaire. I don't know where it came from, but now at every chance I get, I open the application on my phone, whether taking a cigarette break at work, or trying to drift off to sleep, or even on the toilet (yes. on the toilet.)

And like my mother, I catch myself making a wish in my mind, a request to the powers within the microchip and bits and bytes to help me move things along, to help clear obstacles, to tell me things will be alright. This ultimately leads me into a cycle of thought, of reasoning, weighing outcomes and their consequences. I am dragged into a bubble where I am reassessing and reevaluating, and retracing. I forget there is a game of chance and luck, but there is a magic about it, a romantic and whimsical thought. And then of course there's the microchip.

Solitaire is made for one. But I slowly realise that that is sometimes more than enough.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

I'll dream you closer

"You love me from afar" she says.

A bittersweet sentiment that leaves her lips purely by mistake as her mind puts the logic of it together.

He looks at her confused. Asks for clarification.

"It's a present absence... or maybe more like an absent presence... I don't know really."

His expression does not change. The confusion is a constant.

"I see glimpses of it. You let it go by mistake. And in those slip ups I see it so clear and it's like the light of day, and it all makes sense and it's beautiful. But then it's eclipsed again, and for the life of me I don't know why."

Her head bows down slightly in wishful melancholy.

"it's like the lacking of something you know you have...Or the same thing spoken in a different language that after a while becomes frustrating trying to piece together into the beautiful thing that you know it is... Or like sunshine warming you on a chilly day through soft cracks in passing wisps of clouds"

He's confused.

"I'm confusing you. I'm confused. It's confusing."

She realises he does not follow. Or perhaps would rather not.

She leans in with a soft sad kiss, with a hint of a smile gracing the corners of her lips.

"Goodnight." she says. "I'll dream you closer."

And with that she drives off into a dawning city, leaving him on the sidewalk, hoping he slips up more often.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

I once heard... About the joan of arcs among us

I once heard that Joan of Arc didn't burn at the stake and die.

I heard she was beaten by her mother, abused by her father, thrown into rooms and told to shut up. I heard she was victim to drugs and the streets and all the dark creatures that may roam it. I heard she died a thousand times while on her feet and burned a million more while she lay under the temporary cover of her duvet, tears trailing her cheeks in persistent lines that would've left grooves if that was possible.

I heard how her love overflowed onto pavements and into gutters nevertheless.

Books hid her gaze from the world, occupying it with words that twirled and swirled around her into a shell of another time and place and that was all she needed.
I heard how the tops of trees brought her closer to the sky and further from the ground and that made her sing and sing and sing
perhaps birds would adopt her and she could fly away from here
I heard how she built her armour from scraps of disappointment, hinges of steel determination, bolts of fear, and plates of pure survival. Piece by piece she would find them on her path from somewhere to anywhere, not looking back except in quick glances over her shoulder.

Her tongue became a sword she whet with time, using it to keep unwanted confrontations at bay, and beguiling who she pleased to with its gleen and glimmer. And she would go so many times misunderstood by many. But she knew it was just another strength to her armor. So be it.

the tree tops were still her fort

I heard of Joan of arc who never gave up on her heart, and although locked into her armor, it found nooks and crannies to pour out of not asking for anything back.
Sometimes it fell through the cracks, got stepped on, but being the saint was, she did not lash out in revenge or draw her sword in anger at anyone, as deserving as the situation was.

she simply added another layer to her armor, and moved on.

She, like many like her, was a joan of arc. Not for merely suffering. But for taking that stake and making it a ticket to somewhere new, somewhere different, till the flames caught up again. She never complained nearly as much as she should.
And of course, she was never canonised.

She saw the whisky glass (there was no better way to douse the flames, to thicken the shield, to add to the armor) half full, not half empty.

Yet as beautiful from ugly as that was: the dousing drink, the armor, the sword, the tree, and the path, there was always a wound that would sting with every mouthful of whiskey, a moment the armor would crumple into paper, an instance the sword would dull, a flame that would engulf the fort tree, a night with no stars to light the path forward and away.

Her "wisdom" was gained unfortunately, but gained nonetheless, and that demanded a level of respect, even among the cynical, or the doubtful or the apathetic. She would be on top of that tree, yelling "I SHALL NOT SUCCUMB", even when the fires of the hell that was her world were lapping at her toes. A life like hers would make one tough as diamond.

Even if it was in the rough

If you were one of her "folk" she would stand in the faces of dragons for you, many of which she had slain before, or seen their tails in the dark. She would stand firm with her flesh sword and her scrap armor.
All you had to do was genuinely care, and she would reciprocate ten folds without a question. That, she did not fear.
Love, did not spook her.

It was what beckoned her.

I once heard about the living martyrs that were not canonised or written about and who walk among us. The Joan of Arcs of our time.

Always martyrs never saints,
I meet them, everyday