Tuesday, January 01, 2013

The Culprit in Me

Dear Women of India,

Well, sabse pehle my introduction. So here it is - I am a regular Delhi ka banda. Was born here, fumbled through school here , re-fumbled through my college here, and now am earning my bread in this city too. You know, a regular guy with all the delhi works - a slightly loudish punjabi accent, a pretty decent collection of Honey Singh songs,  memories of roaming Dilli Haat in winters, the hardened reluctance to call it "Connaught Place" and not "Rajiv Chowk", the occasional traffic signal jumping. Etc Etc.

So let's talk, ladies. And first up, since it's the first day of a new year - Happy new year. May this year bring you prosperity and joy. But wait. Maybe I should not use such lofty types adjectives for the upcoming year, hai na ? Words which immediately strike up visions of smiling faces, sprinkling giggles, harmonious living, and such. It's not realistic, right ? I mean, barely 15 days ago, one of you was gangraped in my city. Gangraped. Assaulted with iron rods. Thrown out of a bus, to die. And die, she did. Gangraped. Not the first time I have read that word in a newspaper. Keeps popping up. I read the word, nod dissapprovingly, think "Kitne Kameene hotein hain kuch log". And then, turn the page. Gangrape. Bura hai, but hota hain, I tell myself. Hota hai, at these remote villages in Rajasthan or Bihar. Hota hain, at 3:30 in the mornings. Hota hai, in a world which does not intersect with my world.

Bure log karte hain, Becharo logo ke saath hota hain. What can I do. 

But this time, I am a little shaken up you know. I mean, this is too real. She was out at 9, she was in the Hauz Khas area, she was coming back from a movie my family watched a week before that.This is all like regular stuff.  This is not some remote village in Rajasthan, this is not about people from a different world. This is all very real - a situation women in my family could have been in.

And now, suddenly, I am feeling like those goons I used to read about in newspapers are at the door of my home, beating on it with hockeys and chains, threatening to do the same to my world. I am shaken up. And I am getting panicky. This is not about some unfortunate women and wicked men now. This is about women who are my family and friends now.I am googling for pepper sprays, asking the women in my circle to get to their homes before 7, reminding my wife about 181 all the time. And even though I sound naive and insensitive saying this, it is for the first time I am feeling a crime reported regularly on the pages of a newspaper becoming a threat to my world. My life. My people.

My people. You know, my people.

And I guess this is where I messed this up. Because I have never considered you, women who are not my friends and family, as my people. I did not. To me, you were like - others. Not "objects of desire", as some of the more ghastly members of my species would see you as. But still, not my people. I mean, my mom, my sisters, my wife, my friends. My job is to protect them. Any woman outside this circle, and they are not my people.

So when one of you was being touched by a man in a stuffed DTC bus, I was a coward somewhere in the same bus listening to my ipod. When one of you was being commented upon by a group of bikers at a traffic signal in this city, I was probably hurrying past in my car to catch some cricket game on TV. When one of you was being groped in a bustling market, I was probably in the same market buying gifts for my family. And now, when these diseased waters are threatening to burst through the doors of my home, I realise, that I should have tried to help put up barricades when the flood was entering my city.  I realise, with unescapable blame, that everytime even one single woman in this country was being ravished by this epidemic, it was inching closer to one of my own.  

I realise, with shame, that this has happened not just because of men who did it when it happened, but also because of men like me, who did not do anything about it before it happened.

And now, after all that I have allowed to happen, I do not think I am in a position to blame any politicians or cops. Main kya patthar maarun, jab maine hee yeh sab hone diya hain. I was the culprit who set up these imaginary, misplaced distinctions between you, the women of my country and the women of my family. And it is only me who has to dissolve them now.

Maybe it's too late now. But I need to start now. I hope that the next time I sense one of you being disrespected, I will help you fight back. I am no superhero, not even a six footer - so I may be beaten up, but then, you gotta fight for your people. I hope that I would not help such an incident happen again.

So, dear women of India, while you are powerful beings in yourselves, the creators of lives and such strong pillars of emotional and mental courage we men can never imagine to be - I hope, however far fetched the idea may be, that some day in the future you will feel safe walking the streets of my city. Not because you have a pepper spray in your handbag, but because of knowing that you live in a city where people , including men who have been as insensitive and cowardly as I have been, have the courage to stand up for not just the women of our families, but also for the women of our country.


A Regular Delhi Guy.

Friday, November 30, 2012

30 plus. And back.

I was 24 when I set up this blog. It was long back, you know. Times when mobile phones with antennas were around. Times when teenagers did not call me uncle. And times when very few blogged. I was like, "Hey, I write a blog" and most people were like "Couldn't you just buy a lines wali notebook?".

And now, I am 31. Everybody blogs. Amitabh Bacchan. Aamir Khan. Sunny Leone. ( Kidding about the last one. Don't start googling yet. ). So trying to blog again is like a floppy disk challenging a hard disk to some sorta memory challenge. But here I am. All kicked. 

And I will be honest. I had forgotten all about it. Gone.Spoof. And it is only was when I wanted to get a little consumer feedback online for work that I have remembered this blog. But once I hit the blog, it all came back. Almost like locating a pile of long lost "dubious" magazines stashed under the bed. So soon enough, I will be back. 

Also, can you help me with a few very quick responses to that "work wala feedback" here ? Four questions. Would take much less than an year to fill up. Can save my life. Thanks. Just leave the responses as comments. Dua Doonga. 

1    Link to survey: 

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Marital Tactics Vol.1: How not to be killed by your wife

It is said that inspiration is a great thing. It makes people endure pain, leap over obstacles and do incredible stuff like climb the Everest, swim across the English Channel or sit through Mausam. ( I did that last weekend, and it has left me traumatized. My doctor says I will never be able to enter a multiplex with confidence again. )

And today, a good 366 days since the last post on this blog, I have found my inspiration to come back here. Yes, the only comments I now find here are gentlemen peddling 'Shakti & Saphoorti' imparting capsules, interspersed by one from a 'prisoner of the Russian mafia' who wants my help. ( Mere Russian Dost, delhi police ki site blocked thee kya ?).

But then, the inspiration to write is noble and compelling. For I realised that it is my duty to share with the mankind, guidelines which can help them when they are faced with the biggest challenge of their lives - Being Husbands. Yes, if you thought passing those college exams was difficult, being a husband is like passing them a day after the Dean has found your colourful sms on his daughter's cellphone. Of course, the arsenal needed to surpass this challenge is varied, but here goes some I have learnt over the last one year of marital tactics. In case any of them do backfire and lead to your separation from wives or girlfriends, write me a mail. So that I know it's time to shift to another country before you track down my IP.

Guideline 1: Don't Ignore the Bathroom Ki Tubelight

When I was unmarried, it would have taken me a death threat from Lahore to change a tubelight that's not working. I distinctly remember that during my entire year in Chandigarh, I stayed in a house that had no lights in the bathroom. So when last month, my wife informed me that the tubelight in the bathroom had died a quick death, I smirked and said 'Chill maar yaar, andhere mein padosi par thode hee paani dal jayega.' And then I turned up the TV volume. Double Fault.

Dismissing the Tubelight crisis. And turning up the volume. Never do either of them when you are married. Wives have this unrelenting ability to get you to fix the most useless of things, things any unmarried guy would barter for a DVD. Washing Machines. Power Plugs. A mixer grinder that won't smash up 'dhaniya'. So when your lady approaches you with a task of this nature, never smirk. Just switch off the TV, put on the most grim expression in your kitty and change that damn tubelight.

Guideline 2: Know her Kaamwali's Schedule

I had booked the 11 am show on a Sunday. The reviews had been great, it was all about guns and explosions, I had picked up the car keys and excitedly yelled "Oye chal yaar, late ho jayenge !". And in that moment of anticipated happiness, floated back her voice from the other room 'Abhi ruko ! Sabina jhaadoo karegi abhi.' Unable to believe that she considered a clean floor more important than a couple of hours with hollywood, I tried winning this and shouted back 'Jhaadoo kal lag jayegi yaar! Roz to lagtee hain.'

No reply from the other room, as my wife chose to refrain from countering such imbecile and 'unhygeinic' remarks. Just the heart breaking sound of a broom sweeping the floor. By the time we reached, the villain was already half dead. So the learning is - Accept that to a wife, the complete and satisfactory discharge of the duties of her kaamwali are paramount. She will make you miss movies, hop across the floor, and even order you out on the balcony, all with the single minded objective of 'Sabina maarofying acchi jhaadoo.'

So after your marriage, plan your life and activities around the schedules of her kaamwali. Don't be me. Don't miss that awesome movie.

Guideline 3: Just go where she says the better Tamatars are

The entire wives clan loves to shop in crowded places. They have this logic strangulating hypothesis that if there are so many women fishing around in that stack of tomatoes, those tomatoes would the best. So even though there is a perfectly cheerful gentleman selling a diverse selection of vegetables right on the street next to our home, Missus makes me drive to mall every weekend where she spends hours smelling cabbages and poking through potatoes, while I push the cart zombie like, planning to stab myself with a banana. And the literal cherry on the top of this veggie pile is when at on our way back, she smiles arrogantly and says 'Dekha ! Iss store mein tamatar kitne acche milte hain, aur saste bhee - I just saved almost 45 bucks on them.' I nod, feign admiration and say 'Wah. Kya badiya tamatar khareede hain.' And think to myself 'Car Parking ke charges hee 60 rupye the.'

There are so many more. And I am quite on a self ignited drive of 'husband anshan' right now. So I must save these pearls of wisdom for some other evening, and stop now. And before you transform into a little Anna Hazare yourself and say 'Bechara Abla Aadmi", save yourself the bother. Yeh sab to main aise hee timepass ke liye likh raha tha. I am drenched in marital bliss, and my wife doesn't have a problem with dead tubelights, cares a hoot about the kaamwali's work, and buys her veggies from that seller next to my house. It's all good. ( She may find out about this blog. And one should never criticize the wife's habits when there is a possibility of her finding out. That's the last guideline for today.)

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Bass karo yeh Babaji ki dawa ke ads !

I mean, seriously yaar ! I got busy and all and lost a little track and look whats happened ! All the comments here are by those spammer guys who talk about pills and tonics and home loans and mopeds and pups on sale.

So bhaiyon aur unki behnon ( Haye raam, main to itne time baad bhee cheap harkatein kar raha hoon. ) , ek baar fir yahan chaarpai lagate hain, naarangi daaru ke glaas bharte hain aur rang birangee baatein karte hain.

Next Post: Weekend.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Thakur, Life se Panga ho gaya.

You know, all the pangas you face in this life, from a quarrel with the subjiwala over the rates of tinda to dropping your cellphone in a drain, can be classified in three distinct categories, ascending in order of their gravity.

The smallest and most chindi sort of pangas are those where your sneaky boss sneaks up from behind, while you are chatting with pinkbunny_89 on the office system. Not very dangerous, if you remain as calm as a dead rabbit and tell the boss that the client from New Jersey likes to discuss project requirements under the guise of pinkbunny_89 due to 'security reasons'.

Then there is the little more jaanleva category of pangas, when, a month later than the aforementioned incident involving your boss and miss pinkbunny_89, your sneaky boss again sneaks up on you, and catches you chatting with pinkbunny_89 while the client from New Jersey is on the phone with the boss. Still manaeagable, I would say, if you can put on a facial expression as wooden as John Abraham’s, and say to your boss, 'Pinkbunny_89 is NOT our client from New Jersey ? …Pinkbunny_89 is not ? Well Sir….what can I say….I am disappointed by the morals these cyber criminals display…”

But then, there is the biggest sort of panga, big enough to wipe out the dinosaurs upto the last inch of their tails, a panga scarier than Archana Puran Singh’ laughter on Dolby surround , the sort of panga which happens when one warm evening after the aforementioned incidents with pinkbunny_89, the sneaky boss sneaks into his daughter's room as she works on the computer, looks over her shoulder and makes the discovery that she has a rather girly chat id called pinkbunny_89, while you are merrily sending her rather disturbing emoticons from the other side.

So ladies, gentlemen and the members of ayepaisanikaalna (yaar ye jisne decode kiya na usko main apni car ka stereo nikaal ke de doonga , comments mei likhna . Waise stereo china made hain.) , over the last 8 months, I have discovered that I have taken a panga with life, which belongs to the third variety.

If I try to discover where to start, I will be busy discovering while you grow old enough to buy yourself a 36 piece set of Adult Diapers, so if I winzip the agenda, my life over this duration is represented fairly by two glimpses of the flashback ( Yes, you are supposed to read them in Black and White font. )

Scene 1
Venue: My boss’s cabin.

Boss: "You want to think again?"
Me (thought to myself- Abhi, think again. It has been proved that A man without money is mathematically equal to man without a girl within a radius of atleast Five kilometers): "No."
Boss : "I would say, give it a thought."
Me ( thought to myself – So I need to get to a distance of more than 5 kilometers from myself to get married !) : "Nopes, I already have thought , I do not want to continue."
Boss : "Ok."

And with that sigh infested two lettered 'Ok', I quit the biggest company in the world, to join one of the smallest .I mean, picture this for a perspective – Every morning you walk to the ocean with a bucket, towel and lux ( aur kya ?) to take a bath, and then one day you decide to take a dip in the water accumulated inside a shoe. Or another surrogate view, you have been eating a cheeseburst pizza with oodles of toppings every day, and then one day you are supposed to burp after chewing on your fingernails. Just as a demonstration of how ridiculously paagal I felt about myself, I did not tell my family that I had resigned till after two months of doing it.

I do not know wether it was the quarter life crisis people talk about, or it was some part of my restless soul crying out like a himesh mp3, or just the gas experienced on a monday morning, but I just had to do it. We spend all our lives being scared of “what if”, but once you walk out a situation you do not enjoy and face the fear, you discover it was not that bad. I mean, yeah, your parents will think you have been smokin opium and all the girls who thought you were cute would delete your number from their cellphones , but you would not be scared anymore . I mean , you are facing it right there, so you are not scared of the future. I needed to do it so that I am not scared of the future. Makes sense? Not to most of the people around me, but it sure feels good. Onto to the second BIG panga.

Scene 2
Venue : Home.

Dad : " If you walk out of that door, make your own stay arrangements"
Me : ( thought to myself – He would never mean that. ) : Heh ! Ok !
Dad : "I mean that !."
Me : ( thought to myself - Shit . He means that .) : Gulp ! Ok !

And around seven seconds after that, I walked out of the door to travel 233 kilometers and ask for the hand of the girl I am going to marry soon. (Oye hoye !!! oye dhol walo dhol bajao !!! oye punjabi music play karo oye !!).

Over the last eight months, I have been exposed to a bad version of the world war 3, and I say bad version, because you can attack a German soldier if you are a US dude, but how do you attack when the people you face are your own ( ah !! is it similar to the dilemma arjun bhaiyya faced in mahabharat.avi ? ). I have been kicked out of the home for a brief period of time, have cried enough to fill a 500 ml bottle of diet coke, she has cried enough to fill out a swimming pool filled with diet coke, have slammed doors, wanted to drive into a truck only to realise "ui ma !kaafi bada truck hain ! cycle mein drive in karun ? , but most importantly, have been assured, reassured, and re-re-assured that she is totally worth it, and I shall be proven dumber than Uday Chopra if I were to do anything which resulted in her heart being broken, or even dented.
So both of us have stuck together like we eat Fevicol three times a day, and we shall be getting married in some time. I can only try to tell my parents that accepting a girl with such a beautiful heart is the biggest favor they can do on me and on themselves. I mean, bhaiyya kar kya rahe ho, dekh to lo ! ( Mujhe na feeling aa rahee hai that if my parents read this post, mere mummy papa mujhe hayden ke size ke bando se pitwayenge !)

So bhaiyya , the whole thing is, that job mein panga, and personal life mein panga. Watt itni lagee hai life mein ki kaano se smoke nikal aya, but watt lagne ke baad hee to the irons is converted into the golds !!! ( wow man, the day I am converted into gold, I would sell off an ear and buy myself a sportsbike ).

Life has been as dizzy as a polythene caught under a ceiling fan on full speed, but hopefully, I shall come through and survive like a strong polythene.

Hopefully you guys will see me fighting it out, getting stable in this job, getting married, and hence finding myself looking at a happy future of working 6 days a week and paying huge bills.

Chalo aap log bhee kuch kaam etc kar lo, hope all of you face equally big jhatkas so that I feel nicer in comparison, and remember, if your sneaky boss catches you chatting with pinkbunny_89, make sure it is not panga of the third variety.


Arre Arre Arre...aap to bass..you guys are sounding like maine The Great Khali ko uske ghar mein ghuske maara ( aur judge order order karta raha ! :P...damini dekhi hain chaar baar ) . I am just a guy , asking a girl to marry me and a job to pay me ! :P ( Ui ma , notting hill bhee dekhi thee ek baar ).

Chalo ab kaam kee baat , we guys want to hire some Graphic Designers and Web Designers working out of Delhi. Although full time employees are preferred, those interested in freelancing may also get in touch with me at abhinav.jain@brandsofdesire.com.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

She Speaks...

Hi ! Before anything , a very happy new year to you . Hope you gain peace , prosperity and the keys to your neighbour's car in 2010.

Now to the important part . ( What could be more important than getting the keys to that idiot's car , you think ). Having read the last post , a dark reminder of my rudimentary english skills , 'She' felt she wants to write something , obviously , in much better grammar . So she has asked me to publish something she wrote . And as an obedient and scared ( I better be scared after she told me she plans to to buy a kitchen knife next weekend ) lad shall do , I am publishing here the same. Even though I feel grateful to her and I really believe I am the luckiest dude alive , I really do not think I am special enough to deserve any of this , but as she says "Ye tum decide nahi karoge ki tum special ho ya nahi !" . See , I get to decide nothing !


Dear Abhi

Thanks a million to all the readers of your blog who wished and prayed for us. Though I could have expressed my gratitude in the comments section of your blog itself but I wanted this blog to know how overwhelming I feel this moment after reading what you think. I know it well that your readers know you in a different manner. And I don't intend to affect their views. I just want to share what I feel about you with them.

I thought that love is a strange feeling. I believed the most difficult feeling to understand is love. One dreams about his/her special one all the life and suddenly they start loving someone they never imagined to be with. I was always so sure of myself that I will never fall in love at all and even if I do, he would be the kind I had in my dream. Before you stepped into my life, I knew he had to be very calm, serious and quiet person. I had already imagined my life with him. My days & nights would be full of talks about work, life, aspirations and other serious issues I have talked about with others. But love doesn't happen such a regular and ordinary way. It has to tread on the path we never imagine to walk on and with the person we never can imagine to love. Every girl has a frame in her dream of the man she would want to be with for her whole life. And when the man arrives, the frame vanishes...doesn't matter how different the man from the frame is.

Dream of love may not necessarily align with the dream of the special one.

Now with you, the dream is indeed fulfilled. But when I look at the dream I used to have once and when I look at you, I feel you brought more than what I dreamed. More than perfection, the picture looks complete. And I say this still knowing I am not with the serious kind of guy I imagined my life with. Sometimes, imaginations exist only till the extent you don't feel. When you begin feeling, imagination ends at its very beginning. Thats what happened to me in love. I spent more time of life with silence and words have always been your favourite. So different and away we were, yet so closer we ended being. You asked me the question few months earlier, and I said a three lettered word "YES" only then. My dream had started evaporating and the frame vanished. Because then I had only you in my dream.

I remember the day when my roommate asked me if I was in love. And I wanted to run away from the question. She knew it well that I was more of a calm and silent person and may be I would never share this feeling with people around. So she asked me to close my eyes and then answer her question. When I closed my eyes and felt, I saw you...only you. I still can't forget it was just your name and your presence in that moment. And when I opened my eyes I knew it had to be only in my dreams as I would never be able to tell you in words. But love creates miracles also. I had heard about it....I believed it the day you asked me the very question I never expected I would ever be asked.

My friends used to say that only a quiet person can ever bear me for his life, a person who has plenty of words will leave me in two days. You remember, you also shared this with me that only a bubbly & funny girl can stay happily with you. How easy it is to think and imagine along those lines...and we two also imagined the same. But fate had something else in store for us. I think fate always has something else in store for everyone, at least not what they imagine about relationships. A funny girl would have given you a perfect environment of laughters and jokes. A day with a quiet girl won't have its complete share. Remember I told you this once?

At first, I used to feel that your fun-loving, talking-always-nonsense nature can only survive for little time. I laughed with you, I smiled with you....unknown with the factthat the laughter won't last for long. But in your absence, I remembered those and laughed again alone...just like a crazy person. I believe this...when you do something in isolation, it reflects your true feelings. I saw you making people around you laugh, make them feel happy in what they are doing, make them believe in their capabilities and dreams, make them feel good about life. At least, I felt all whatever I stated above. And then I realized, it doesn't matter what kind of person you imagine would bethe best for your life...only thing matters is your completion with the one. We may be poles apart from each other...but you make me believe in myself and love, you make me feel good about life, you make it worth living and not just spending days, and you make me....ME.

I am happy that my imagination died and feelings started....know why?....Because love had to happen....


~~~ Added later

Thanks for sharing in our happiness and putting down all the nice words . But just wanted to share a feeling with you. There have been some comparisons between her and my writing styles. I wont even want to share my opinion on who writes better, because ye question hee out of syllabus hain yaar ! How can I compare myself with someone who is a part of me ? To compare x and y ( oye teri ! aa gayi algebra ki yaad ? ) , x and y need to be seperate . But here , she and me are not .Either of us would not want to leave each other behind in some race , because our joy is not in winning that race , but in sharing a journey with each other. So chill maaro , a comparison between her and me is as meaningless as my C++ coding ! Ye World cup ka final nahi hain , sirf uski aur meri kahani hain.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

She , and who she is to me

So , it’s been 10 months and 14 days since I asked her the question and she said a yes , making me believe in miracles right then . By the way , one calculation mistake about the number of days since such a historical day and the guy is dead , so I hope my maths is right here.

A journey across half the globe. Three half fights between us (Definition – I fought , she listened ). A reinforcement of the belief that my parents get angry when they should contact the shehnai wale instead . Quite a few happy moments , with me giggling at my own jokes, on most occasions. And we are still together , with me admitting that she has contributed most to the fact that the relationship is going as strong as a well fed wrestler , with my contribution being spilling food and driving her around , primarily.

This experience has changed , and continues to change quite a few things around me .

I mean , my telephone bills have ‘changed’ by a noticeable margin , to the horror of my mom and to the sheer delight of Airtel. The amount of driving I have been doing around the city has gone up ( The sight of her house as I turn around the corner is sight more beautiful than Taj Mahal’s for me . Sorry , Jahangeer . Or Shahjahan . Whoever. ). I no longer wonder if I would have to change some baby’s diaper someday , confident due to the instruction that I HAVE to change it . And believe it or not , for the first time in my life , I ambled into a Jewellery store at South Ex , looked at the decked up salesgirl as she eyed me suspiciously and mouthed the words “ I want a pair of earrings.” . Ok , the Ripley’s part ends here , because I gave up after looking at seven earrings , wondering how could anyone choose between things which are equally tiny , equally shiny and meant to be completely hidden under hair anyway.

But while the stuff which has changed around me is varied , with an entire chapter justified for how my family took it and almost fed me to dinosaurs , the most felt change for me , has been inside me.

I mean , not that my kidneys have changed color , I am talking about internal transformation .

You know , this is not the first time someone put her faith in me . Is not the first time someone thought she would have me besides her in every storm . Is not the first time someone put me in a position where I could hurt her , trusting that I would not. Idiot , I am . Guaranteed.

After all that past which would justify a Kameena Sequel to be shot on my life story , it was like god had e-mailed me a letter confirming that I was incapable of taking care of anybody , except my bike maybe .

I had vividly visualized a Dolby surround system installed life where I would live alone , watching HBO and eating pizzas only to die someday with the unpaid credit card guys being the only ones bothered by my death .

When I looked at myself in the mirror , I saw a guy who had run away from every difficult situation of his life . A guy who thought ‘walking away’ is a cool thing to do , yet ashamed in his heart. A guy who had come to believe that life is this meaningless string of moments , and more scaringly for me , had lost the will to find a meaning in this string of moments .

I know it was no holocaust I had faced , and there are people who have seen worse things such as a college hostel’s food , but to my mind , I was a useless failure , who could earn money and mimic Shahrukh , but was worse than a China made plastic bicycle when it came to reliability and trust.

And then she came along. Strong minded . Independent . Graceful . Elegant . A lady who had the sensitivity of a petal to heal life , yet the strength of a tree to face life . A heart which could absorb all pain , yet could shed tears touched by the pain of a stranger. A soul which held an understanding the very wise have , yet cares like the most innocent child ever. In short , my complete , geometrical opposite.

Considering the opinion I had about myself , I believe it would have taken a lot of foolishness or marijuana for me to believe I could be the guy she deserved , and to this day , I believe I am lesser than the guy she deserves.

But yet , since that day , she has been a friend , a guide and an inspiration for me . Without trying to teach me , she has given me something I could never give myself , something no amount of movies could give me , something no amount of hours immersed at work could give me .

She has given me a reason.

She has given me the reason to believe I can be a better man when she says she trusts me in spite of my past.

She has given me the reason to wake up at 4.30 in the morning to ensure she is safely on the bus she is supposed to get on , even though it is hard getting up that early even for a free sandwich.

She has given me the reason to feel special as she sings a birthday song for me while I cut the cake untidily. By the way , she takes over the knife after thirty seconds and cuts out amazingly neat slices. How do women do that?

She has given me the reason to roll down the window and hand over some coins to a boy begging at a signal, knowing she would do the same.

She has given me the reason to call her as I grip the steering wheel with one hand, imagining the smile that would emerge on her face seeing my name on the cell screen. Pretty dangerous , that driving stunt . Don’t tell her.

She has given me the reason to face the people who changed my diapers , safe in the knowledge I am right in not letting them demean someone they should not.

She has given me the reason to stand up to accusations and screams , determined not to step aside , but to go through them.

She has given me the reason to choose the hard but right path , having learnt from her that a righteous life is better than a convenient life.

She has given me the reason to again believe that goodness and simplicity can exist and thrive in this world inhabited by greed , egos and exorbitant petrol prices.

She has given me the reason to know I am going to be all right , because my definition of being ‘all right’ has changed from not facing problems to solving them.

She has given me the reason to truly wish a smile on the face of someone not even aware of my own presence in that moment.

She has given me the reason to feel accepted , not because I am perfect , but because someone does not expect perfection.

In a way , I think I never cared about the kind of guy I was . A bunch of mistakes , I lacked the reason and the confidence to do anything about every mistake I had committed.

She gave me the reason to want to be a man better than who I am.

You know , I know I will never be the man she deserves to be with . But for the first time in my life , someone has gained that place in my world that I am willing to happily try till my last moment.

Probably everyone else thinks this relationship is following the normal , bollywood inspired storyline , and will end up fizzing out in a few months or years , replaced by the real questions such as who brings the kids from the school or why haven’t I still paid the telephone bill , but I know she will always be the same special one for me.

From that dream about death amongst pizza cartons and a TV remote , I dream about a life which ends with the joy of having lived for people I really loved.

Because while a boy finds a girl who keeps him happy , this boy has found a girl he wants to keep happy .

While a boy finds a girl to live happily with , this boy has found a reason to live happily for.

I don't know if 'you' are reading this , but if you are , I just want you to know that I have made a lot of mistakes , and my grammar is all wrong , and I crack jokes nobody gets , but I love you without expectations . And I will never stop doing that .

PS – Considering my family may read this , please promise me you will contribute money , utensils or old toys to help us escape to Alaska at the opportune time. Ok , just kidding dude .

~~ Added Later

@ This is for each and everyone who chose to comment here

Thank you guys ( When I say guys , consider it as a figure of speech . I am equally grateful to the female segment of homo sapiens ) . I mean , I started this blog at the tender age of 23 , and I turned 28 last month ( But if you plan on addressing me as uncle , I have contacts with underworld . So dont risk your life ) . But if you did not flunk in maths , you see that I have spent more than five years talking to you . I have an entire bunch of friends I have never seen , but have helped me more than a 'visible' friend would have . I guess I would tell you about the kind of experiences I have had interacting with people I have never seen someday , but for now , just know that whenever I read a comment , good or bad , I feel grateful because you could have spent that moment scratching yourself , but you invested it in talking to me . And more so now , at a time when things are not very easy in terms of support from the people around ( notice the diplomatic use of language ) , your wishes mean a lot to her and me . I really don't consider this blog as a story I tell . I consider it as a conversation with each one of you . And thanks for being nice enough and unemployed enough to talk to me . Chalo abhi , let us all go back to work before our bosses catch us . Enjoywa.