Those Perfect Ones

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Ever come across someone, in life or over the web, who seems to have it all?

Everything.

Intelligence, Wealth, Beauty, Taste, Opportunity, Creativity, Courage, Popularity, Health, Friendship, Admiration, Self-Assurance… I am tempted to add ‘Peace of Mind’ but let’s not get carried away with over-the-top assumptions.

You see them doing everything they want, the way they want and effortlessly too! They’re happy with everything and everyone is happy with them. They’re humble (Damn it!) but you know that they have a wholesome love for their self. Something tells you that when they look in the mirror, they must smile and mean it because they see something that makes them genuinely happy. 

I’m not naïve. Or so I believe.. I know that no one is or has it perfect. Everyone has their share of Ups and Downs. But these people I refer to? I can only assume the Downs. I don’t see it. It’s probably there. Hell, I know it’s there. But the very fact that I can’t see it is fascinating enough. How do they manage to keep it together? How is even the negative stuff so romantic and genuinely ‘all for the best’?? I know they say it is but quite honestly sometimes the only upgrade to a downfall is that ‘Life goes on’. It doesn’t necessarily mean life gets better. No. It just means it will continue. That makes some people happy enough to call it better but I’m too sceptical to see it that way. 

But these… Magical Creatures. Their life is on a constant upswing from good to better and better to best and, if stretched, back to good. Of course, all of life is like that. For a person who’s had it ‘Better’, ‘Good’ would be a dampener, never mind the ‘Average’ and the ‘Really Bad’ state of somebody else. 

Your tatty pyjamas with printed cows only make them look endearing. They come off looking fun and spontaneous with that Lime-Green wig you bought as part of a Halloween costume ensemble; Perfect smile in place, thank you very much. The bad camera angles that made your teeth look like Dolarhyde‘s dentures and your paunch a geographical feature, don’t detract from their looks. And the Angels in Heaven themselves would descend on earth to gawk, should they decide to go all out and dress themselves up. 

They have the money. Oh yes, they do. And before you say, ‘Oh but what a waste… They do things just to show off and because they can…’ Oh no they don’t. They go to exotic destinations and indulge in ‘making music’ or taking time-off to ‘write a travel piece’ or go to your dream college and take up that Fall Course that you so desperately want to but won’t because you can’t afford it especially when it doesn’t give you enough credits. You know that if they wanted to they would’ve done stuff just as meaningless-ly (Is that a legitimate word even? Maybe I should ask these Those Perfect Ones. They would know.) as the other rich brats whose exploits we see on E! But they’re sensible and individualistic. They are independent, quirky, tasteful. Their choices are personal and meaningful.

Their family is just as open and indulging. The ones who don’t judge their Artsy self and does not pressurize ‘Appropriateness’ on them. They add to the family legacy in their own way and not carry its burden. They find the perfect mate at that perfect time when perfection is an eventuality. That soul-mate who has just the same amount of everything or is that perfect cog to the machinery of their life. They will plan that perfect wedding where they can afford to buy everything a person can dream of but will choose to not be superficial about it. Their wedding invitations will be fun, in that you won’t think how much it cost (Although you can feel the weight of what you’re holding) but will feel a little less creative than you thought you were when you see the format.

That famous photographer you heard of? Yeah, s/he comes to the wedding and takes pictures that make you smile, laugh and tear up the way wedding photographs are meant to. The clicks themselves are not bourgeois family portraits of the wealthy. They’re personal, fun, confident. And you wonder what it feels like to have such an inclusive smile when you look the camera in the eye and know it will reveal that innate beauty that people compliment you for.

I might have come off jealous. I don’t think I am. Mostly anyway. But being someone who is strictly middle class, has over-sized dreams that border on fantasies, who reads fiction because it helps her escape from mediocrity, whose blog is a secret because she’s tired of having to explain and argue with people about her thoughts without being labelled something petty and for whom photograph-moments are a decent-sized fear? This breed of super-people are a source of feverish fascination.

I know that I’m not accounting for what I don’t see and am romanticizing what I do. Maybe that is all there is to it: my IMAX vision of their Multiplex life. But I am astutely aware of how, in any case, I’m just the audience. To this, some of you might say that I am probably just as fascinating to someone else and its all just perspective. True. And deadly depressing. Somehow its more comforting to think of myself as mediocre with better things to look forward to than, in any parallel universe even, be the best it can get. I need to at least have a fantasy of something bigger and better. 

The closest I come to giving a physical form to these graphic thoughts is what I’ve read and related to, if only partially. Those second tier (albeit important) service providers you read about in Fictional books on the Golden Age of Hollywood. The ones on the fringe, who did not have the talent or the looks or appeal or power that people they dealt with had but were happily associated, even if from afar, to that glitz. 

Of course, there’s no one I associate with, who is such perfection combined. They regret something or the other about themselves. But they come achingly close when I choose to ignore their remonstrations. It’s the people I have as acquaintances that have such a hold over my fantasies. The ones I don’t know well but whose timeline I have access to. This, of course, highlights and consequently overthrows the basic premise of my description of The Perfect Ones but whoever said this was a Scientific discourse?

In the interest of being a Hollywood fan and clarifying that I’m not a nut, I do NOT look at or chase Perfection like Nina did.

Hope this is an enlightening read on my thirtieth birthday.  

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Evolution

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PROLOGUE

GSD

The Errant Non-Canine

A beautiful German Shepherd Dog completes my family of six. She’s gorgeous, loving, insecure and a Non-Canine. She has seemingly relinquished all Olfactory and Auditory Talents of a regular dog. While my Brother watched her displaying more human traits than dog-ish tendencies, he said, “She is the biggest evidence of the reality of Evolution.” I laughed so hard, there were tears in my eyes and narrated the story several times to varying audience with much gusto. It also made me want to write on my view of Human Evolution.

EVOLUTION

“In the broadest sense, evolution is merely change, and so is all-pervasive; galaxies, languages and political systems all evolve. Biological evolution is change in the properties of populations of organisms that transcend the lifetime of a single individual. The ontogeny of an individual is not considered evolution; individual organisms do not evolve. The changes in populations that are considered evolutionary are those that are inheritable via the genetic material from one generation to the next. Biological evolution may be slight or substantial; it embraces everything fom slight changes in the proportion of different alleles within a population (such as those determining blood types) to the successive alterations that ledfrom the earliest protoorganism to snails, bees, giraffes and dandelions.”
-Douglas J.Futuyama in Evolutionary Biology, Sinauer Associates, 1986

A working definition of Evolution can be:

“Evolution is a process that results in heritable changes in a population spread over many generations.”

 

NECESSITY IS THE MOTHER OF EVOLUTION

Its in the very Nature of Life to constantly attempt to reach the ideal state of balance so that the maximum number of species survive. When a Species is failing to survive, to maintain a balance in its numbers, Nature steps in to help. To do so it introduces quirks, instances, a fork in the road. If the Species is fast enough, it will embrace the quirk and achieve survival. It will Evolve.

Random Variation

The Cone of Probabilities

The Cone of Probabilities: Multi-faceted Occurances of the Past lead to the Present Point only to open up the Cone of Multiple Possibilities for the Future.

Every life form is a mixed product of Nature and Nurture. The happenings before and in the lifetime of an Organism affect the course of events as experienced by it. Consequently, every occurrence changes the Organism itself in a small or big way. It causes a Variance. Most of these Variances might die a silent death but some are either adapted physically or become a genetic part of the Organism. Its Random because its at a very localised level and the cause of the Variance lies outside the Will of the Organism. Its also need-based so unless there is a practical necessity for the Variance, it will not get passed on. It will die as a quirk.

Survival of the Fittest
The Random Variation either is an advancement or a regression in the qualities of the Species. The Advanced Variation helps the Species to survive the adversities of life. It helps the Species propagate and pass on the Variance. The quicker the organism adapts to the Variance, the better its chances. The better chance it has to make its Variance more popular, make more of the species in its own image and have the Variation as an advantage against its Predators. Possibly become the Predator.

Natural Selection
For any Species to survive, it needs resources. It needs the full might of all species and all creatures through the food pyramid to survive, to balance out its own fallibility.
When there is general balance in Nature, a species can survive by increasing its population. To balance the adverse effects of the survival tactics of other species, Nature gives a fillip to the successful Variant.
At the time of imbalance, Nature will, to help propagate All Life, select the Variance that achieves Natural Balance.
The Variance gets passed on several generations either by Nature (Genetic Inheritance) or Nurture (As a practice or habit). The Fittest propagate the Variance.The Variance now has a stronghold. It is not longer a Variance. It is the mode of things to be. It is a necessary Upgrade. 

Evolution
Most organisms of the species have now adapted to the Variation. The Ones that didn’t have perished. The very Nature of the Species has altered. It has Evolved. As part of its evolution, it altered the course of events and the status of other species in the food chain, in the scheme of things. It has triggered the need to evolve in other species. It has triggered the need to balance out the success of this species with that of another which will lead to its own downfall and in turn bring back the need to find another Variance.

 

THE HOME-SAPIEN

We were somewhere in the middle of the Food Chain. We consumed Plants and Herbivores. We had Predators to keep our population in check and in turn we maintained the balance in the population of Bunnies and Weed. But our skills were at best mediocre. We were good at escaping but not by much. Trees provided us food and protection from predators so it made sense to make it our home. Groups provided us with the kind of power in numbers which a loner could not match. So Nature provided us with the propensity to propagate. It sharpened our attraction to those of our species with whom we could reproduce. So we swung from tree to tree keeping our numbers up. Who knew that Swinging like that would give us the Opposable Thumb and introduce a Variant…

World Population Through History

Image Courtesy: http://www.galileo.org

Today we have increased our numbers to destruction levels. We evolved faster than Nature’s rate of introducing the elusive Variant. But the process is in motion. Its happening as you read this. Our advancement in Science and Technology is happening faster than Nature’s ability to replenish what we devour to advance. We are depleting our resources and cutting off our survival boosters. Our medicines are creating better super bugs. AIDS has vastly reduced our numbers. Cancer, the Mutation is eroding our population.

THE HOMO-SEXUAL

The Evolution of the Homo Sexual

The Evolution of the Homo Sexual:
Natural. Necessary. Now.

But Nature is not our enemy. Our enemy is our numbers. Nature will help us survive with other species, in harmony with them. So while our numbers do need to reduce, we also need an advanced form of human to carry on the species after balance has been established. Our species needs a smart Variation. A Variation that attempts to reach the ideal state of balance so that the maximum number of species survive. A Variation which produces healthy, intelligent human beings that can relinquish the obsolete need to reproduce. The Fittest will be those who embrace this Advanced Variant. Nature will select only those that do and in time a new race of humans will become prevalent and change the current definition of ‘Regular’ Human Being.

Empire State of Mind

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I had first heard the song ‘Empire State of Mind’ in the opening scene of Sex and the City 2 on a slow day. There are songs about places but “… Concrete Jungle where dreams are made of…” was a tall claim. Now I’m a city bred girl. I love sedentary vacation as much as the next person but if you would ask me to live that life, you’d be barking up the wrong tree. So the lyrics fascinated me enough to source the channel that aired Sex and the City, The T.V Show.

Thing is, I don’t care much for Carrie and Mr. Big. What I do love is that the show is an ode to New York City. And whether NY is actually like they portray it or not is up for debate but the format does do a pretty neat job of putting an idea of New York in place.

There is this one episode in particular that stayed with me. It started, like all others, with a monologue by Carrie. She was talking about how New York is genuinely The City that never Sleeps because you can have anything from Chinese food to Condoms (Scene showed Samantha Jones at her Door) delivered to your door step at 3 AM.
Those words immortalised my fantasy.
In such a state of mind, how could I not watch New York, I Love You!? I mean, its a movie about people of all kinds, races, ages, aspirations, sizes and shapes who called New York their home and who fit in its harsh landscape like the pieces of a Jig-Saw, for heaven’s sake.
Needless to say it only ignited the fantasy into a working passion.

Maybe I’m wrong.
Maybe it’s not all it’s cut-up to be.
Maybe I only think I’ll like that life.

Whatever you say, I’m sure you’re right. But I just Have to Know! My life would genuinely be incomplete without my one New York Day where I do… whatever it is the New Yorkers do.

One day. It’s all I ask.

The Face

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Most days are okay. Hell, they’re even happy.
One minute I’m laughing. The jokes are hysterical. Music is ‘awesome’. Work is satisfying. Movies are meaningful.
Before I know it, a pain developes in my chest cavity. Its like a trigger. The pain accesses memories, stills. And its like waching a movie.
The pain is rising in waves. The pictures are rushing in. They’re speeding. I’m momentarily blinded. I can’t see what’s in front of me… the pictures are more real. I realise I’m sobbing. I realise it. I did not know when I started crying.
I look down trying to figure if I’m bleeding, if there’s some physical manifestation of the hurt. I see that my hands are over the place where my heart is. I realise that had my involuntary reflexes not been in the way, I would have taken it out to see why it hurt so. To abate the pain a little. But I can’t.
The images are rushing faster now. I feel almost giddy. I try to keep one consistent Face in those memories still. Just to look at those eyes. And I know it shouldn’t but the Face makes me feel a little better. It shouldn’t. The Face did this. The Face causes me the pain.
I realise I haven’t forgiven. I haven’t forgotten. And worse, I don’t hate. Not yet.
And before I can stop myself, it slips out.
“Why”.

Eternal Politeness of the Blogger’s Rhyme.

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Friend: Hey! How’re you doing?
Self: Great! You?
*Silence*

Self: Hello! I heard the good news! Congrats!
*Awkward Silence*

I don’t know about you’ll but this happens to me. A lot.
I became active on the social media around the time I was eighteen and within a few short, embarrassing months I realised that its ‘cool’ to not reply to people. Ignore posts and messages because you are too busy living an ‘actual life’.
Theatres urge patrons to switch off their mobile phones when a movie or play begins. (Presuming but hopefully!) We have all been taught to listen to people and speak when they have said their piece. I was under the impression that these are the building blocks of Social Interactions.
Apparently not.

I had this friend in college, Sally. Now Sally is unbelievably beautiful and has a number of admirers of all genders. To top it she has a husky voice that has the said admirers in a tizzy. She’s made an excellent P.R when the occasion (Read when She saw fit) demanded it. But if you were someone who wasn’t Sally’s close friend or were just a class mate as opposed to her B.F.F and she had nothing to gain by interacting with you, even greeting her would be a silly and pointless thing to do. Something my good friend Ashley and I learnt the super awkward way.

Ashley: Hi Sally!
Self: Hey! Long Time!
Sally: *Blink*

How Sally and I became friends is really a story for another post, but the bottom line is that her rudeness was not only acceptable but also a mark of regal condescension. It gave her a certain power and enigma and made her someone the masses liked.
Economics 101 really.
You hold back supply; the demand will increase.
You withhold courtesy; People work to earn it.

Twist V/S World.  0-1

Twist V/S World.
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So now I knew that the key to a good social standing was to be miserly about one’s admiration and politeness. People seem to like those that are not good to them. And I want to be liked.
I learnt indifference from the classic experiences; the Right of Passage for everybody growing up into adulthood and it took me roughly seven years to do so. My Teachers ranged from the standard Bitch-Brigade at College to Sally the Rude, right down to my ultimate-nightmare of a boyfriend. My experiences with them made me understand the intricacies of rudeness and how to optimise it. To be indifferent enough to keep a tantalising distance but not rude enough to drive them away.

Blog.

Blog.

As I mentioned in my post So now what… ?, when I decided to have a Blog of my own, I was skeptical for a lot of reasons. One of them being my readers’ opinions (Or lack of). I mean, why would I voluntarily put my thoughts and opinions on a public platform for people to ignore? Didn’t Sally and the rest teach me how to not spend time and energy on random posts and bother with people’s’ opinions unless I have an agenda?

Imagine my surprise when this post happened to be one of the first I read on WordPress. Now it was possible that it was only Gunmetal Geisha‘s opinion about Blogging and manners and was one of a kind. But when I liked something or commented somewhere, people I don’t know would reply back if only to say thank you. Bloggers actually read my comment, replied and in some cases re-directed me to sites and posts they thought might interest me. Can you believe it? Of course you can! You’re probably a Blogger!
I guess it makes sense because… well, why have a Blog if you’re going to ignore people’s thoughts about it? But then why have a ‘Social’ Network if you’re going to be stoic and unresponsive?
I’m new to this world so maybe I haven’t seen the ugly yet but I was expecting to be trashed. Instead I find people, successful Bloggers no less, who take the time out to personally reply to every comment. There seems to be so much appreciation all around. There are debates, not arguments. There are ideas not preachings. There is humour not offence.

I follow this Blogger named Harsh Reality, who says in his ‘About’ Section that his,

“..goal with this blog is to offend everyone in the world at least once with my words… so no one has a reason to have a heightened sense of themselves. We are all ignorant, we are all found wanting, we are all bad people sometimes.”

Harsh indeed. But you write him a comment or even a disagreement and like all the amazing people here, he’s polite as ever.

One Tough Cookie.

One Tough Cookie.

The world is as it always was. Dealing with ego, chauvinism and power struggle all day, I would return to mindless television to see trashed versions of the same thing. Now I come back home and look forward to intelligence with a heart. Creative people who do have an ‘actual life’ they’re leading but who are also bothering to be polite to the unknown Twisted girl.
I have a renewed faith in humanity and a sense of Loyalty to the girl I was. The girl who was polite. The Girl who expressed without an agenda.

The girl who now believes in the Eternal Politeness of the Blogger’s Rhyme.

Creamy Hot Chocolate and Choco-Nuts Pops

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This post makes me think of my Sister from another Mother, Dee. She whips up delicious things in her kitchenette as well and chocolate is at the core of all that is her. She’s married now and has moved away and I miss her. Wonder what reminds her of me?

Details, naturally

One cold day, about twenty-eight years ago, my mother entered a coffee shop in Italy and ordered a hot chocolate. It was the first time she ordered one in Italy, since she had just moved there with little Casper, my brother. What she got surprised her; the cup was hot and steaming, but this was not hot chocolate, she thought. The consistency of whatever they had just served her was thick and almost not liquid anymore; it looked creamy and thick at the point she thought it was some sort of pudding.

Soon enough she realized that was just how the Italian hot chocolate is, and even sooner, just after taking the first sip, she had realized it was delicious.

Years went by and that same hot chocolate became a staple in our pantry during the cold winters. Basically it was what got us through the winter. One cup and…

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