Monday, December 21, 2009

The Humsafar Trust 16th Aniversary Celebrations

     "I shed my inhibitions. My fears.  I travelled light” - Lance Armstrong

Uninhibited, Undeterred, Unassuming and Unperturbed… they danced, they sang, they spoke, and were themselves with no apprehensions or self-doubt about their sexuality, or the method in which they chose to express it.  I consider queens and transsexuals as normal people, but still, I should admit in this forum that I  used to feel  odd with them around. The fears were mine, and it was my petty thinking, I knew. I was always told as a child “if you don’t do this, I will tell that chakka to take you away”. (Then we just had one  offensive word to  categorize them all, - chakka.) And this had indented such a massive blow on my thinking that it left me prejudiced until this day. Of course, my outlook towards transsexuals, cross dressers and queens had changed, and positively so, but the fear lurked on.   I wished to conquer my apprehensions and fear. And when I heard the emphatic reply when I asked my friend deep if he plans to attend the humsafar bash - “I am DEFINITELY going”, I was pepped up.



in the pic: the famous Laxmi at a Sony TV show with Salman Khan
 


We entered at around 6ish and had to queue up to sign a muster. It was a serpentine queue, but thankfully, our turn came much quicker than expected. As I stood in the line for my turn, I saw a few queens trying to do a line-maro on me… with their tirchi nazar, they looked at me from the corner of their cornea. LOL.  Should admit,  was quite flattering, though it made me a little uncomfortable and self conscious. I held on to Deep like adam to a fig leaf, camouflaging myself in the behind of my friend. The acted confident and dint probably even let Deep know about my vacillating moves. After a little bit of a musical chair play, we ended up sitting bang next to the stage. The music went on, the performances began… the colour and candor was just amazing. What impressed me most was their free spirited and raw approach. The emcees fumbled, the CD scratched, and the mic screeched, but there was no stopping – the spirits were high and they danced till they dropped with confidence and exuberance.   Conquering every inhibition and in a high, they danced! And they danced, and they danced.



I felt ashamed of my own inhibitions and  that I had typecast'd them as frivolous. The venue  was close to the station, the train track was close and an occasional train would pass by and the voyeuristic nation that we are people had they eye balls popping out as they looked. But were they conscious and did they fumble??? Naaah! They simply overlooked the prying eyes.


It clearly was the celebration of free spirit. It was a celebration of free thought. It was a celebration of freedom from all bias and prepossess. A transforming experience.

What??? You dint attend this event???

Acha-cha-chooh! Sorry. The wait is too long - 1 year.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Polls and Polls

  Reposted from Pink Pages


CNN’s State Of The Nation” poll results unraveled that 73 % thought homosexuality should be considered illegal, 77% thought homosexuality is unnatural, 60% thought of it to be a disease, 62% thought homosexuality could be cured. 



Once upon a time it was illegal to have consensual sex with an adult of the same sex in private! Once upon a time you saw people actually scan through online dictionaries for the meaning of words like gay, lesbian, fag. Not so long ago, if politicians did ever mention “377” we would jump, scream and burp in absolute enthusiasm. That was our yesterday, so tabooed and ominous, where just a flicker of hope gave us a surfeit of happiness. But openly, we were nothing. All our screams and belches went in despair; distorted voices were as good as silence, emerging from several closets, they fell to deaf ears.

Tracking back, from thenness to nowness, from masks to tasks, our metamorphosis was in tune with that of the politicos and society at large. Anburami Ramadoss came out very strongly in favor of section 377 to be read down. Finding hope trapped in the least expected quarters, definitely felt nice. Yahoo groups were flooded with mail trails expressing joy. Some were optimistic of a positive change; some thought that this was just another “gone with the wind” story. Many were buoyant and thought of this as the genesis of change. But this was short-lived. When Ramadoss quit, the flame was flickering, and what seemed as a possibility of a bright dawn seemed to be again, a dreary dusk.

Then came in election time. We were such a non issue – a minuscule minority of the least possible denominator. Why would our voice matter in the chorus of the multimillion Indians? There were other causes that would be truly election winning! Why would they whine over a controversial subject in times when people were desperately taking disparate measures to distinctly make a mark? Well, there were LGBT activists who met up with people from every political party to put forth their point… though many supported, the question of whether they would support the cause openly, or whether they would include the same in their political manifestos was still in stillness.

I remember having attended a show on NDTV, the topic being discussed was election politics in South Bombay, the issues addressed ranged from poverty to education, to space… not surprising though, we found no space in it. As I said, we were largely a dead letter. But having the mike in hand, I couldn’t resist asking what I wanted to know very strongly. It was okay and obvious a stand when it came to poverty, or education, no one would say “lets us be poor, or let there be more uneducated people.” I popped up the question to candidates Meera Sanyal and Milind Deora , “ What about issues like homosexuality? Where you are required to take a stand, it’s not very comfortable, is it?” I proclaimed “I am a gay man, what about my rights?”. Meera Sanyal wasted no time in elevating her eye brows and saying with absolute confidence and self belief candidly on camera that she was for the decriminalization of homosexuality. Milind Deora again spoke on camera, about the AIDS outreach and the inability of theirs to reach the homosexual population given section 377.

It came as a reprieve, this discussion that took a positive overturn. At a time that everyone was just mulling in sorrow and was sanguine about changelessness, came a bomb of a High Court verdict. Disshhh dannng doing!!!! There was music, there was dance, and there was happiness. The average Joe of the LGBT community, repressed, depressed and silenced for ages was now out in his own spunk and sheen. The dailies that saw a handful of LGBT people repeated again and again, got juice, soup and scoops of newer people. Every daily went pink, some with gay news in practically every page. Funny it may sound, on 2nd of July I was unwell, and took a day off from work, I was sleeping away to glory just to be woken up by a TV channel for a telephonic interview, the interviewer asked “how are you feeling now that you are legal”. I thought the guy had gone bananas. I asked him politely what the matter was, and he very excitedly told me “consensual sex amongst adults has been decriminalized”. I was spell bound, shut and shaken. The voice on the other end said “Sir could we go online, could we have your reactions.” I could somehow manage to say, “ohh ohhh okay” and then I could hear the reporter speak, as she mentioned my name… I simply said “sorry, I need to gather my thoughts, I’m so happy, I don’t know what it means, I don’t know what it should mean… I just want to scream and shout and dance” and I did that, it was just the most uncomposed interview I had ever given, though very positive. And I did exactly that, I called up every body that I could. Came out openly and personally to even those whom I hadn’t. And had this gush of energy that flowed in me in jet speed. I could feel my heartbeat. I was zapped to switch on my Television and find our community on practically all channels.

But now that we were out and about, achieved what we were praying for, we needed to take notice of newer challenges, there were also more eyes that were prying precariously with an intent of causing harm. We achieved the right to love and make love, and some found it loud and lewd. Those who were silent about their apprehensions also timorously emerged. Some well wishers too opined that one should not be so out-in-the-open. And we in a common chorus asked “why not?”

But did we blow the whistle too much and jumped the gun with gay marriages galore, much to the discomfort of the perpetual pretentious moral guardians of culture and nature? This is a question that will find different answers. But one thing is now for sure – there is more awareness, two males or females merely holding hands would not be just seen as “just friends”. Awareness will definitely have a flip side. There were some polls conducted by leading dailies and channels which gave a lopsided view against the LGBT community. Example would be the HT- CNN IBN poll conducted in 16 cities where 3506 people were interviewed, the results were shared on the CNN show “State Of The Nation” the results of the poll unraveled that “73 % thought homosexuality should be considered illegal”, “77% thought- same sex is unnatural”, “60% thought of it to be a disease”, “62% thought homosexuality could be cured”, “83% think homosexuality is against Indian Culture” and “94% of the correspondents don’t have a gay or a lesbian friend”. It’s natural for us to rubbish such statistics. Yes, I did have a “what the eff” look on my face when I read this. “How does it anyway matter”, I said to myself. But reflecting on it, I did realize that we as a nation are obsessed with statistics and numbers. Haven’t we resolved the battles of choices in school “majority wins”… it’s indented in our mind since then. (Is this how it is elsewhere in the world? I don’t know) So it does psychologically impact people into believing that homosexuality is a disease and could be cured. It did boost the morale of some naysayers in my extended family, who jumped to the occasion and said “See, what the results are. Didn’t I tell you”. I did understand the impact of such polls, it didn’t make much difference to me personally, as I am openly gay. But I could well imagine the state of those who have just come out to their parents, and convinced them of their sexuality as being natural and not something that was chosen.

Change is here to be! I am optimistic. Yes. Now that consensual sex between adults irrespective of sexuality is legal, the natural next step would be to campaign for marriage rights, adoption rights, property rights etcetera, etcetera. I personally feel, we can’t just gallop without letting the dust settle. Let’s thank our ministers in the UPA for taking a stand. And standing firm there. For the next step, let’s not jump, let’s hold our horses… What say?

Friday, November 06, 2009

Without A Whimper...

my post from the Bell Bajao blog
also reposted at S.I.T.A Sena


Child_Marriagein a little village, there was a little girl called dinky,
when she would blush and the world would go pinky.


the innocent beauty came but with a price,
she was bartered for a field of rice.

she dint know what was going on,
just happy she was as papa confirmed  he would visit her in her new playground.

she sat there in her wedding sari, all decked in red and fawn,
until night approached and reality dawned.


her body was touched, she was entered, she was strained, she was stained,
ripped off her innocence she was maimed.

morning sun and battered she,
life was not what it once seemed to be.


she continued living , she made pain her friend,
in hope of her papa to return, she lived in pretence.

until one day, daddy died, and her hopes were untied.
dinky cried, and then with vengeance her pen took a ride…

“pinky dinky ponky
father had a donkey,
donkey tied, father died,
now dingy rangy lanky dinky donkey”


Donkey! yes you heard it right… I did state the fact that little girls are traded today, exchanged -as goods were once upon a time. Like how people trade donkeys and cattle. A fact that many English speaking, ravenously vocal urbanites are blissfully unaware of… it’s a reality that many minds are closed to.  For us it is still THAT INDIA we see in arty movies.

Child Marriage is equivalent to child sex abuse, much worse than the umbrella term RAPE or MOLESTATION. A shameful part of the glorious India that we boast of often… where the child woman spends her life in distress, pain and darkness.

What can we do about it??? Well, we could talk, blog and tweet.  Our voices can definitely make a difference.  yes, not all differences that you make  could be quantified… the effects of your words would not be often tangible. But needed is the belief of the mind that things would change, with the positive vibes packaged in words and verses. Or I have another option… we could be resigned and cynical that things will be so and nothing can change it and sit on our cozy chairs with wrinkled expressions and whine “O Pity My My”. Or are we waiting for a story of courage in distress to infuse in us the energy and enthusiasm to realize the necessity of change in THAT India?  Or are we still just too busy debating cattle class virtual reality tweets when in reality women is traded as cattle?

...That child woman in THAT India, who goes through it… without a whimper!

Monday, November 02, 2009

The 8th Gay Bombay Parents Meet

It's not so often that I crosspost other's articles, but was a little too tempted to do so this time. Sachin's reports are a class apart, took the liberty to post it over here, as it doesn't mention names of the participants.

Please read.
 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



EVENT: GAYBOMBAY'S 8TH PARENTS AND RELATIVES MEET – A REPORT

- by Sachin 

Date: Sunday, November 01, 2009
Time: 4 to 7p.m.
Venue: Liquid Lounge, Bombay

Participants:

Mothers of gay men = 9
Fathers of gay men = 2
Aunts of gay men = 2
Sisters of gay men = 3
Gay men = 125
Lesbians = 001

Introduction:

Umang introduced each parent by saying something special about them and with some appreciation. This was met by applause from the audience. He mentioned that it was wonderful that they took the time and effort to come to this meeting and that we were deeply honored by the same. During the meeting, speaking in any language was fine. There were no photos or media, and we intended it to be like we were speaking at home; very casual.

Objective:

Parents of LGBT children face unique issues. This was an effort to make the parents meet the gay community, and more importantly for the LGBT people, both out and closeted, to listen to and interact with parents who have faced up to the alternative sexual orientations of their children or relatives.

------------ --------
"Settling down"
------------ --------

• Will you be happy if your son has settled down? Have you discussed his relationships with him?

"I would prefer it if he did. It is not so easy. When it comes to two guys both want to be independent, both must have a job. In a heterosexual relationship even if a girl doesn't work it does not matter. She gives up her job. With 2 men this is problematic. Unless they reside in the same city and are sure of remaining there for a long duration of time, it is difficult for the two men to have a steady relationship. My son doesn't know how long he will inhabit that city. Of course, I will be happy if he has a home and a steady companion throughout for the rest of his life. I can only pray for it. When it will happen and how I cannot say."

------------ ---------
"Personal space"
------------ ---------

• Parents worry a lot about fleeting relationships. This anxiety irritates the child. Where does the parent draw the line between protecting and intruding?

"When children grow up, we do influence them. As they turn 24-25 years of age, they don't want to be harassed all the time. If my son is well-settled and wants to lead his life alone then I should not badger him all the time. Give him space. Everyone wants space all the time. Even we parents ourselves, if we are told something, we don't like it to be repeated. We get tired. After 25-26 you must leave guys alone. If they want advice, give it to them. You always love them, so you must support them."

"I have a peculiar problem. My mother is over-understanding. If I am out for 2-3 hours my mom asks which guy I am with. My mum knows how my brain works. At times it gets too much but it is okay."

------------ -------
"Promiscuity"
------------ -------

• How do you deal with a gay son's multiple boyfriends?

"Even girls have multiple boyfriends. Parents don't necessarily know what happens in their heterosexual child's life either."

"I don't agree that gays look out for sex any more than straight men. In a gay relationship they are bold enough to explore the world. Given a chance every straight guy wants to be Casanova. Irrespective of sexuality, a man's sexual urges are always there."

------------ -------
"Coming Out"
------------ -------

"Much before he told me he had prepared the ground. His father expired two years ago. I was alone. For him it was difficult to gauge how I would react. He wondered, `she may not talk to me, she may hate me.' But when he told me I didn't feel anything at all. He himself didn't want to be like this. He was fighting himself. For 7 years he took his time, before telling me. First he convinced himself, then he told me. You too may have asked yourself why you are the way you are. It cannot be changed by anyone. God has made you like that. I don't consider it his fault or mine. God has made all of us."

"I came out to my mom 2 years back. We are both doctors. The day I cleared my exams, I took her for a walk and told her I liked guys. She seemed alright then. I thought everything would go well. But little did I realize that mom was taking it as a joke. When I said `mom I like guys', she said, `yeah me too!'. There was a state of denial. Two years down the line, we have the same situation. Current scenario at home is that of a daily war."

------------ --------- --------- -
"The Role of Education"
------------ --------- --------- -

"Nowadays there is a lot of awareness in the media as well as access to the internet. If the parents do not speak English how difficult is it to explain what homosexuality is?"

"Education is irrelevant. What matters is how much the parent loves the kid and understands her. I feel the more educated and globally exposed parents are, the more narrow-minded, blinkered and status-obsessed their outlook is."

• In all these years have you met parents who are not too educated and have very little exposure to these issues. How did you counsel them? My parents don't know these terms.

"There was one parent who was very rigid, who said there are either men or women. Homosexuality is unnatural and should not be done. Such parents take longer time to absorb the fact. I am so glad that we have this gay parade, and that television and print media are talking and writing about gay issues. Earlier it was not so much. Such people need more and more meetings to understand things better. One should always emphasize that he or she is your child. Let love conquer everything. Parents too have problems. They have to face the extended family. But let love prevail."

"I came out to both my housemaids on National Coming Out day. My maid would always ask when I was getting married and when she would get celebratory sweets. I told her I am `gud', the colloquial word, and that I liked guys. She was absolutely normal. She didn't jump off the roof or me to my mother and say anything, It was a non-issue for both the maids. If you are good to them and consider you to be a good human being, it is a non-issue. Male members of family have been less supportive than the females. It is a similar situation at my workplace."

------------ --------- --
"Living together"
------------ --------- --

• When a guy marries a woman they stay together in the same house. Is Mumbai ready for gay couples living with the family under the same roof, or is it a distant dream?

"Relatives have no problem but bigger boys in the building snigger and pass remarks. If people come and ask, I can tell them to mind their own business."

"If the concerned people understand, I tell them my nephew is gay. Once an officer came to my house, and we happened to have a discussion on the subject. He was very vulgar. So I didn't even discuss it further. If it is necessary then only I tell others."

------------ --------- ---------
"Did you know already?"
------------ --------- ---------

• Almost 10-11 moms here. Boys are closer to their mothers as compared to girls. Before your son came out, did you know about his sexuality in your heart?

"He would wear bangles, and my kurtas, and dance. When he came out it was not surprising since as a child we saw him doing all these things. Once when it was raining he cried and cried so his mother went and got him the bangles he wanted. We knew but at that time we were not exposed to the concept."

------------ -
"Fathers"
------------ -

• I am sure dads are also concerned and worried. What goes through a father's mind when a son comes out? Do you feel he is less manly? Why are accepting fathers in a minority? Do you worry about the continuation of lineage?

"He came out to us on the phone. It took some minutes for it to register. I am proud of him and supported him."

"My husband was shocked. He wondered if he was on drugs, what was wrong."

------------ --------- --------- --------- ---
"Post - Delhi High Court Verdict"
------------ --------- --------- --------- ---

• Do you feel any difference post-377?

"There is more awareness. But people don't fully understand yet. Some parents brush it under the carpet."

"There is emotional power in sharing. Thank you parents for being so open and sharing so openly your feelings and thoughts. We have a big challenge ahead. Fundamentalist leaders are coming together to say that homosexuality is unnatural. There is strong opposition with 13 petitions in the Supreme Court against us. The High Court judgment says LGBT people are full citizens of the country. How do we protect the judgment? We can get psychiatric associations that say homosexuality is natural. However where parents come in very strongly is where the appeal is at an emotional level. The opposing parties say homos prey on children. How to address these arguments at emotional level? We can have an intervention of parents saying we want the judgment safeguarded. Is it possible to have parents getting together to intervene in the Supreme Court saying we support the judgment and do not want our children to be mistreated in our country?"

"There are two very important benefits to this: Firstly an emotional view in additional to a rational one. Secondly senior lawyers will respond to parents and support us. Please think about it, ask your friends and parents. You will have to sign an intervention in your own name. We are hoping for 20-25 parents to sign and get a senior lawyer to represent us. Please ask your parents to think about it and get in touch with us.

------------ --------- ---
"Extended family"
------------ --------- ---

"How you cope with coming out is personal. I haven't spoken to any relatives. Some are open-minded but some will just make this an excuse for gossip and politics. His cousins know about it and I don't even know if they have told their parents. They know he stays alone. It depends on who is asking and what the intention behind asking is. Why should some people be allowed to use his being gay to serve their own ends?"

• I am out, family has met my boyfriend, no issue. For the first time, my cousin has invited my boyfriend and I to her marriage. I find my extended family very annoying. I have no desire to deal with their questions. Should I go to the marriage with my boyfriend or not?

"People like you who have status in society should be open about it. Go."

------------ ----
"Discretion"
------------ ----

• I came out two years back. My parents are okay but they say, "Please be discreet. We accept you but don't tell anyone. Once people know, they will talk about you and us in a negative light. Why don't you go to another country and live?" I don't agree since the world is small and things come around anyways. Does anyone have an experience of keeping it discreet among family and friends?"

"We have a constant argument in the family. Heterosexual society doesn't advertise like you do."

"They are dealing with the fear that tomorrow someone would point out that they are gay or that they raised their child badly. You can make a deal: "If you want me to go to a psychiatrist, you have to come to a parent's meet. It's a deal."

"Concentrate on becoming independent. "

"You should make your parents understand this is not bad or mad behavior,. It is not asocial or antisocial. It should be easier then for your parents to accept you. Of course the majority is heterosexual and a minority are homosexual. Make them understand that something is not deviant because only a few possess it. It is an orientation like left-handedness. It is not abnormal or criminal. Give parents time. Some take a long time. Mothers are possessive and have a lot of expectations. From the time the child is born we think of his or her future and have lots of ambitions for him or her. Knowing that you will not have a family life, this disappointment comes out in denial. After all among normal people homosexuality is a passing phase exhibited during adolescence. Hence they think it is a passing phase for you too. So you need to make them understand: "If you forcibly make me marry, I will be doing injustice to another person. Parental affection is always there and you have to give them time. They always hope they can change you. Once they know you will not change, they will accept you."

"Once you are an adult, you have to put your foot down. You have a right to live your own life. As long as you are not doing something criminal, every parent will come to accept you."

"Since I have come out my parents have never pressurized me, never asked `whom do you hang out with, which party do you go to'. It is my duty as the son that if they are not comfortable with something, to not cross the line. It is my responsibility to protect their individuality. "

------------ --------- ------
"Conflict resolution"
------------ --------- ------

"Even in heterosexual relationships men avoid and ignore issues. Girls want to talk it out."

"There is no binding glue of a marriage in gay relationships. In our situation anyways everything is under cover, and we think we always have other options."

"How do you know that heterosexual relationships given the option would not break up? Most straights don't even get a chance to date."

------------ --------- --------- -
"Forging relationships"
------------ --------- --------- -

"There are lots of people in long-term relationships. Those who can become role models are too busy leading their quotidian lives. The reason there are no gay matrimonial sites is that the way the gay community in Bombay is evolving is good. The flip side of matrimonial sites is failed and forced marriages. Why hold up arranged marriage as an ideal?"

"While growing up, a gay relationship was something people knew nothing about. Today what I have seen is heartening. Lots of gay people aspire to have a long-term relationship. Anyone who enters a relationship, wants it to be long-term. I agree that the way to go is not to have a gay matrimonial site. Instead we should provide gay men t opportunity to meet in a non-sexual environment. "

"I have had two prior relationships that didn't work out. With us they are lot of compromises. His parents won't accept his lifestyle. So we cannot live together. He has given up a lot from his idea of an ideal relationship. There is no guarantee. I always have a deep-seated fear of ending up alone. But there are no guarantees in any relationship. You have to prepare for the future but know that it is always uncertain."

-----------
"Fear"
-----------

• Looking at the future what's your one big fear for your child?

"I fear he may be alone. I would like my son to have a permanent or at least a long-lasting relationship. When two people are together you are angry and depressed and make each other a buffer. But when it remains confined within you it hurts your personality and your relationship with other people. A permanent relationship I would like for him, as it is important. When you get your child married the parents feel relieved that the children have now settled down. I would like my son to have somebody who would understand him and share his choices. It helps you to grow. In marriages how long does that love remain? You have to work at the relationship. It needs a lot of sacrifice and mutual understanding. "

"I have no fear for my son, I have full confidence in him. I once asked him if the relationship will last for ever, he said he will try his best."

"Always the fear is about old age. The mind should not remain vacant and in old age grand children occupy the mind. If you are too lonely, unless the person turns religious, it is bad. Just as the physical body needs food, the mind needs to be occupied."

"My son is into social activities but I fear his old age since he cannot look after himself even today. He doesn't know where he keeps his things, I say you must adopt so you know how difficult it is to raise a child!"

"Nothing bothers me but I feel that going ahead, his relationships should last. He should not be alone in the future."

"I worry about my son like any other parent. In his old age how will things turn out? Our community is made up of middle class families. In Bombay even today the concept has not fully developed. You have been saying for 20 years that society is changing so where is that change? Of all the gay men sitting here, why are there no couples here? My son is nearing 40. Soon we will depart this world, how will it work ? What solution have you got for that?"

"I agree with sir, there are people in the colony who ask my mother who this guy visiting her son is. But it all depends on how strong your son is and how much you stand by him to give him stronger support. He is the one who has to take courage and stand up. I live in a predominantly middle-class colony. Their children talk about it behind our backs. You have to be strong and look at the brighter side of things. I look at the single people in my family as examples, since they are the people who love and support my mom and aunts."

"There is also the possibility of the gay man adopting a child, the issue of loneliness is not only about being part of a couple."

"I am a widow. I have no children. I am alone. My only close-knit family is my sister. I am alone. Even we are dealing with it. It hurts me sometimes that I have nobody to call my own. Fear of being alone is not only within the gay community."

"In my family we have relatives who have not married. They stayed with other relatives or friends. There are many examples of such relatives, but nobody raised the question in that whole generation. In earlier generation these domestic arrangements were present too. There are examples in every family where someone has not married and spent his life the way he wanted to."

"I have fear but I feel God is there. He can adopt a child and if the child is very young and is fine it shouldn't be a problem to adjust. For lasting relationships we should also see kundalis."

------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- -
Film: Unconditional Love (by Dr. Raman and Siddharth)
------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- -

We watched the 20 minute film after an introduction by Dr. Raman, psychiatrist.

------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --
"Professional and Unprofessional Help"
------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --

"Most of these examples of seeking help, the area we intended to talk about, these are all real. By the time they come to the psychiatrist they have already tried so many of these things."

"None of you'll were educated or knew about homosexuality except for something on TV. Your child came up to you and talked about it. How did you get yourself to have a fairly good understanding of homosexuality? What about your journey of trying to understand what's going on with the child? How much of help did you really seek from a professional or pseudo-professional ?"

"We knew about it, we didn't need to be educated. Over the years we learnt more and more. We didn't take him to any doctors or astrologers. "

"I wanted to come out but I thought my mother would collapse. I took her to a psychiatrist. My mom was adamant that I get married. The counselor said I will ask you in front of your mother. She asked my mother certain questions about me, mom said he doesn't want responsibilities. When the psychiatrist said one of the reasons could be that he is a homosexual, my mom got wild and started abusing the psychiatrist. My mom turned to me and asked, "Are you like that?" I said yes. Mom said you are just making this up and this woman is supporting you. There has been no difference in my mother's attitude since then."

"At least 50% of the psychiatrist fraternity even today, are uncomfortable as they think it's something to be treated. All the different types of therapies, loading the child with anti-depressants and tranquilizers is a reality. Maybe this is simply because they themselves cannot come to terms with this. This is all the more reason that we should seek help from within our community rather than going to these quacks."

"I met a couple of psychiatrists, and one of them actually told me its up to you. You can start developing feelings for women. I met a famous sexologist. He said by June 2006, you will turn straight. We made visits to religious places. It was weird and funny. I definitely lost my morale. The doctors are well educated in their fields and have degrees flashing on their tables. But they are humans too and can make mistakes."

"The only role of the psych with a gay person if they are depressed otherwise there is no role."

"When I came out my parents were very worried and my brother very homophobic. Brother and Father took me along to this counselor. I spoke for an hour or so. He said there is no issue. Let me counsel your father now."

"Awareness, education and love are the only ways to help gays overcome their difficulties. If there is unconditional love the parent is going to support the child come what may. We have to accept the child and it is very hard for the psychiatrist. The question put across by the parents is, are you siding with us or with our son?"

"When I came out they took me to a religious place for a ceremony. So before it started my father told the religious person my son likes boys. The priest told me this is all wrong. After the ceremony we had to offer something and the priest was very cute and I grossed him out by winking at him. He said to my father don't bring your son here again."

------------ ----
Gay studies
------------ ----

"I had a suggestion. I opted for gay studies in India during my MA. Half the department was scandalized. We can approach universities and create lots of awareness. When we got insights of the human element, we got more people to read and understand queer studies. Most queer literature in academics is sexually oriented and loaded with sexual tendencies. It should be more balanced to give a rounded view."

------------ --------- -----
Opposite-sex marriage
------------ --------- -----

"Never even remotely push your child to get married to the opposite gender. It can lead to a complete and total disaster."

"If 85% gay men get married, why cant you get married? I am among the remaining 15% who don't get married. It's your son's decision. If he is strong enough to choose not to be married to the opposite gender and continue to lead his life we support him all the way."

"A son of a closeted homosexual caught his father in bed with a younger man and committed suicide. There is another child is struggling with depression on finding out that his father is a bisexual, we have not thought of this though it is much commoner elsewhere. Some gay men think, `we can lead double lives and manage to fool both the groups. Why go through these hassles? Marry a woman to appease parents and carry on by the side'. We don't look ahead at what's going to come when we have our own children. How will you answer your child when they come to know? We need to take our call now – there are many who are not in a long term relationship. That is no excuse to marry the opposite sex. In Bombay and Poona in the last year itself 3 have come to break their marriages after learning of their sexuality. One got the ex-wife remarried and happy. He is looking for boyfriend."

"I love my brother and adore him, and follow him everywhere. As long as I am there I will never let anything happen to him ever. If I accept him nobody will have the guts to ask anything."

Conclusion:

Umang thanked the parents and everyone gave them a standing ovation. Gaybombay gifted specially-made rainbow mugs saying "Proud parents of a fabulous child" to all the parents.

"If during the course of this meeting you have visualized your own parents sitting here, do bring them to the next meeting."


Please visit www.gaybombay.org

Monday, October 12, 2009

Surviving Child Abuse

This was an article that recently appeared in Open Magazine. It is very special for me, because its the first time that I have written something for a magazine. and I think, i have done a pretty good job.

At first i had sent milder draft, not so graphic, for I felt that magazines would heavily censor it. But thanks to Madhavan from open magazine, and their Open minded approach,  he decided to add some stuff that i dismissed as too graphic,  from my blog with my  permission.

and here is the story, as is. unedited.

Frankly speaking, given a choice, Ii wouldnt wish to be spoken about for this topic. child sexual abuse is one of the many issues that i feel strongly about. for me animal welfare tops the list of causes.I just dont know how to react when someone tells me "I am very proud of you". not being modest, but I could react only with a Thank You. I am not aware of what difference I have made, most times.

I think, of my life as an opportunity to make a difference. a difference to many lives that i could touch by simply speaking about what happened with me ... for the nth time.


http://www.openthemagazine.com/article/true-life/surviving-child-abuse
>>>start>>>

Surviving Child Abuse

Harish Iyer recounts his journey of self-discovery through years of pain and trauma

Harish Iyer is one of the research subjects in a movie on child sex abuse being made by Onir (Photo: ALIEFYA VAHANVATY)
Harish Iyer is one of the research subjects in a movie on child sex abuse being made by Onir (Photo: ALIEFYA VAHANVATY)

I was seven years old when it started. I was at a relative's home. His wife was also there. As always, he wanted to give me a bath. He soaped me to a rich lather and suddenly started playing with my penis. I didn't know how to react, but didn't mind it. I think it felt nice, though weird. He asked me to do the same to him and I obliged. He then asked me to suck his penis. I was repelled by it. He forced his penis into my mouth. I moved away and started crying loudly. He told me that he would kill me and everyone in his family if I didn't shut up. He then asked me to suck his penis again and this time, I did it till he spurted on my face. There was a knock at the door then. It was his wife. "I will be back in a while," she said from outside. He lifted and took me out. He pushed me on the cot, turned me around and then raped me. He continued to rape me for 11 more years.

All my childhood I lived a dual life—the life when I was being abused, and the life when I wasn't. It dictated my very being. It was years of continuous abuse, years of pain, years of breach with not a single soul to reach out to. I bled from my anus often, and once did gather the courage to tell mom. And she thought it was because of the summer heat. I don't blame her now. She was completely ignorant about the fact that male children are susceptible to sexual abuse and need to be protected. I became reserved though I did have friends—a tree that was beside my house, the chirping birds, the flies, the ants, the lizards, all were mine, and I loved them immensely. With them, I blabbered. Anything to be myself in.
At school, I never had a male friend until the eighth standard. I never trusted a man. I couldn't understand the growing-up phenomenon. I wondered often why boys touch each other and speak, why they play the 'beat the butt' game… it was all distasteful for me. There was this experimental streak in them that I never could understand or relate to. I thought the girls were much more comfortable with their bodies. They discussed and spoke to each other about breasts and their undergarments. Boys lived in the realm of fantasy.

I never fantasised about men or women as I grew up. I was completely asexual. I was very body conscious. I thought my body was disfigured by constant abuse. I couldn't bear to be seen from the rear. As a result, I would chicken out from anything that made me stand first in the row, showing my rear to the rest. My constrained body posture made me walk shaking my butt, which people thought was typically girlish.
When I shifted from school to college, I would get some fantasies about pleasurable sex with boys. But I thought this was because of my abuse and tried forcing my mind to think of girls. But the fact remains that until I reached college, I didn't have a thought of a guy or a girl. No sexual fantasy whatsoever. Yes, my mind was replete with curious questions about anatomy and reproduction. But no sexual fantasy as such. I felt hatred and resentment towards anything that was masculine. I found it rather weird that I was getting these sexual thoughts about men and was dreaming about the very penises that I dreaded.
Meanwhile, in this battle of self-discovery, I confessed about my sexual abuse to a friend. Instead of keeping the confidence, he spread the news. Soon, the walls of the college and the toilet signboards had my name. They didn't see it as sexual abuse. For them, it was fun gay sex. I became a symbol of ridicule. This was a time when I didn't even know if I was gay or straight or whatever. But I got branded as gay, because 'I had sex' with my relative. I tried to commit suicide, but survived.

This was a time when I became friends with a dog named Jimmy. I used to lock myself in the room with him and cry out to him. The closer I got to Jimmy and confided in him, the stronger I felt. Even now, I was living two lives, the life in which I was being abused, and the life in which I was not. But the line dividing the two was diminishing. I became aware of what was happening to me. My problem was not that I faced pain during the abuse; it was that I felt nothing. I would lie like a log of wood. I was absolutely nihilistic. But now it was getting difficult, as I was gaining consciousness from my trance. I was understanding what pain feels like. Every day was getting worse, a thousand revolting voices rang in my mind.
One day, the revolution took definite form. My relative pounced on me, and I kicked him. My eyes were red and bloodshot, and I ground my teeth and said 'NO'. A loud and clear 'NO'. This is all that it took to end this ordeal. Once and forever.

Because of Jimmy, I started speaking up slowly for animal rights. I then started standing up for myself. And the slander campaign in college helped me because I had nothing to hide now. The college, in fact, helped as it saw a spark in me, and soon I was on stage performing and letting myself loose. I found recognition, and support, and decided to speak up. I make it a point now to speak about this taboo topic. Sadly, but not to my surprise, I have found many more boys open up to me in anonymity—the 'sailing in the same boat' syndrome. I help them as much as I can and later direct them to psychotherapists, though I don't feel they follow up.

Meanwhile, I realised that I was getting attracted to men. I always thought it was because of abuse, but then I realised that when I was being abused, I never felt sexual. I did have sexual relations with a girl, consensual of course. And realised that I don't feel for females sexually. I couldn't marry a girl to just prove that I am not a result of my past. I finally realised that I was naturally gay. I ventured, I Googled—people in support groups like Gay Bombay helped me realise that there is a big gay world and being so was normal. My parents accepted me the way I am.
I am 30 now. It has taken me years to comprehend that I am not a remnant of my past. And that was when I stopped 'growing from' and started 'growing into'. I have made a conscious decision to speak about child sexual abuse, because ignorance about sex abuse didn't help me. And the one who wrote 'ignorance is bliss' had the dictum working for him. I cannot be him.
>>>end>>

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I WAS bi, I AM Gay

“I had been through the straight path, it didn’t suit me. So here I am, GAY. Cock sure now! 100% gay.” this conversation with one’s inner self is what many of us engage in. I have spoken to many people who have walked the “straight” path to discover “finally” that they don’t belong to that space. Though scientists have said time and again, that our genes determine our sexual orientation, there always a thought lingering in our minds about “circumstantially imbibed homosexuality.”

Though, not all Indian parents discuss sex and sexual preferences at the dinner table, we are given to believe, consciously and subconsciously, that we will grow up to have a happy married life… husband-wife-kids et al. We accept this without question, without doubt. And this subconsciously plays up all through our lives. The worldview becomes our view. And that view aligns itself so very befittingly in our being that it sometimes takes eons to excavate our true self from this complex collage of infused attitudes.
I have a friend; his name is “A” – a man who was “successfully” married to a woman. (How I gauge success? Well, he has 2 children. And also, the kids look like him. That’s stands testimony, doesn’t it?) “A” had a colorful life. He enjoyed the best of both worlds. He was a regular at Gay parties and didn’t ever reach late for the very pampering Karva Chowth. He ambled on parallel lanes… and managed it efficiently to ensure that both don’t meet even in the farthest sight. I heard from our common gay pals that he is extremely virile when on the act with them. He also seemed to have settled well with his wife. All was hunky dory with his life until the day he went in a quest of his true self. It looked like a classic case of familiarity breeding contempt. He suddenly didn’t like the company of his wife. He was impulsive and repulsive with his kids. “Not that I was in love with a guy” he said “but am just bored of playing to the gallery”. Eventually, he ended up with a divorce for reason that was not homosexuality but bigamy. He got a friend of his to play the role of the “other woman” and staged his way out of the marriage. “Why did you marry at the first place”, I asked him. He replied “I was bisexual”. I was amazed at his matter-of-factly reply. How simple it is to swing both ways and finally decide which way is yours! “What about the lives of others who are affected by this choice?” I wondered.
I mulled over this puzzling issue for quite some time. I looked for answers outside, whereas actually, the solutions lied within. I did a thorough introspection of my feelings. (Me- an out and about gay man) I was drawn to the age when my older cousin had a fetish for bosoms. He used to narrate the sexpisodes with heavily breasted women with utmost passion. Much so, I used to imagine of the woman. This was often coupled with some anatomical responses in my body which result in me adjusting myself to disallow full preview. “Was I straight then?” I wonder. When I turned from boy to man, it was hip to have a girlfriend. Chasing skirts was an everyday quotidian for my group of friends. I followed the troop. Neither did I enjoy what they did, nor did I enjoy aping them. Passing comments and discussing orgasms about and with the opposite sex wasn’t something that I was good at. But still I ended up fooling my colleagues to believe that I am like them- Straight.
It took some time for me to allow my innate sexuality to emerge undisguised. I started interacting with my kind- gay men. That facilitated a greater understanding of the simple issue of sexual orientation that we strive to make complex with stiff mindsets.
I pass not a verdict, but express my understanding… I feel homosexual habits and homosexuality are two different things. There is thick distinction between the two. Let’s take an imaginary example, we often hear of handsome groups of gay hostellers. The question that dwells in our minds are “did they become gay after close proximity with other boys?…”. (What a great coincidence it would be if they were all gay by birth and met one day at the hostel!) I presume that hostellers, young and libidinous, would feel the void for a woman to satiate their fantasies. Engaging in homosexual acts with peer and near might just be a means to quench this thirst. The person might not be a homosexual, but might be engaging in homosexual acts. This could be well termed as “Homosexual Habit” whereas not the persons innate orientation.
Speaking about sexual orientation, let me take my own example, my first sexual fantasy was not about a person from the opposite sex. As adolescence set in, my hormones naturally reacted to the sight of handsome hunks. I did appreciate the beauty of the opposite sex, but (without mincing words…) bulges appealed to me and not bosoms.
I have heard the statement myriad times by people who support gay rights “everyone has the right to choose to be gay”. The reality is that “We didn’t choose to be gay. We were born this way.”
It takes a lot of courage to take your stand. But nothing’s as fulfilling as being what you are.
There are no bi lanes to gayness. Let us not let society bi the gay.
reposted from Pink-Pages

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Mumbai Twestival – A SuperFuntastic Experience

Does a cause fund raiser need to be necessarily drab and boring with hyperventilating activists and very difficult unpalatable words…??? That’s how the cliché is na. But we are alag and unique.

We do it with a lot of spunk and funk. We danced, wrangled and twined, and we do not cry and whine about what we couldn’t, but we jumped and dived into what we could.

3 cheers to the organizers of the Mumbai Twestival, @Netra @Mokshjuneja @farrhad and @monikkam for organizing this unique event, and thinking of supporting a social cause, whilst having fun. And Hadippa! What fun we had. I told Moksh that id be meeting him before 6:30, and reached around 7:30. In Bombay you always have an excuse – Traffic. And that’s so a passé to say – Traffic mein fas gaya tha.

The evening started with Netra screaming and screeching (very school head-ministerni like ) on the Mic, And if you thought she was angry, frustrated or something. You are absolutely wrong. She was just thanking the sponsors.


The Sponsors Were Bombay Store, Only Gizmos, Cadbury Bournville, Tata DoCoMo, Shoppers Stop, and also free themes for blogs by Sandeep Bali and musical night invitation by Mihir – (Yay! Yay!) The sweetheart that Netra is , she handed over the mic to each of the sponsors, and thankfully, the sponsors dint talk about the offers of their product or engage in loud brand promotion, but rather spoke about the larger cause that the Twestival was supporting the Nonprofit organization “Help A Child”.

Help a child by the beautiful @andreaclear is an organization that supports deserving students who drop out because of lack of requisite funds with tuition fee and allied education costs.


Netra all of a sudden. Called me and shoved the mic onto my gullet. (LOL) I thought of an innovative way of getting people introduced. I chose to call it Speed Dating. I asked people
to come over and introduce themselves and asked the audience if they were a hit or a miss. After some 7-8 people the interest level dwindled and my concept fell flat on its face (sad puppy face) We needed something peppier, something that was more upbeat and appealed to all and sundry.

…Then came our man Moksh, to give us some moksh from what was beginning to be seen as ekdam pheeka evening. He started the Housie. This had 5 prizes, each of the lines, and 2 full housie… The event pepped up the audience. But still they were largely in their own closed groups. (huh!!!)

When we thought ”gayii bhains paani mein”, Outta blue cometh Our pretty lady - @SrushtiRao made a celebrittyish late entry. She came

, and dish dang toingggg she created quite a furor … she picked up the mic and instigated people to lie. I screamed on the microphone, “@GulPanag “is here. And that did catch the attention of some lover log of Gul. Still some smart pants, could make out that I was spinning a yarn. (huh!)Srushti got frustrated, and simply started gyrating her hips to the music… and so did I. And then one joined, and then one, and then one… and suddenly the whole audience was spinning and shaking an arm, a bum, a hand, or at least an eyelid. At this event, srushti invented a lot of new species of dance forms like – Scooter Dance, Dhobhi Dance etc, We also did the best of Mumbaiyya street dance, She danced we all a followed and we stopped only when the restaurant manager asked us to, else we were prepared to dance away the night.

Post that we had singing sessions, and then we finally vacated the place.

Our masti continued on the streets, on our way to dinner, and back home. tHe feeling was truly resonating.... vibrations of the twestival were felt ....persistently hammering us even now, 30 hours later.

The Queen of the day was definitely Srushti and the king, Moksh!

In Joy,

P.S. Mind naat my Englisss man! Im still dancing while I am typing.

P.P.S. I have stolen all photos from the Facebook Accounts of Moksh Juneja, Mayank Gupta and Annkur.

Schhh! Don’t tell anybody.

Here are the links: Moksh’s Album , Mayank’s Album and Annkurs Album

Friday, September 04, 2009

Cutie Ya!

Sanity is an endangered species, and I am realizing that more loudly and lewdly these days. Every day I meet new good people, who take their goodness to doom if not bloom. I met Mr. X online and shared with him a difference of opinion, and was met with a lot of yet un- experienced indifference. It was about the issue of abuses in Hindi that always cornered the woman. I don't swear usually… and even if I do so it's always in a closed group, and just for fun. He overheard me swear in one such moment and started hyperventilating. Poor thing. I felt very sorry for his myopic attitude. I felt so sorry for him that I am dedicating a complete blogpost for the word – cutie ya.


Sometimes we take things a little too literally. It was the poor C word that I used. Poor because, previously the word was always awarded an exclusive audience in Hindi films and an A certificate. Now it doesn't, the C word is given a U certificate and is watched heard and used by all and sundry. Hissing Kids from Malabar hill, to the kissing boyfriends of five gardens to the lively lanes of Dharavi – all use this word with great intonation, affection and causes no infliction but causes a lovely infection… the word sinks in your mouth, and people wag their tongue to say it with the perfect vowels… it's a part of the system, not excreted ever in the bowels. It's a replacement "how are u doing buddy" eg: "saala cutie ya kaisa hai".

This is a word that has no meaning most times, but means the world to so many. I find it harmless. For some it is a takia kalam. They love the word so much. I find it sounds sweet, and don't make a fuss of it. But there is a flip side to every goodness. Some people use the word in anger. Some spit and sweat it out when they use the word. Gussa Thook Do. Now that's not something that I like. Use the C word with dignity. Not as an abuse, in gussa.

I dislike people who use the C word that way in anger. For in anger, I believe the true inner self is shown in all its sheen to the world. In that state of consciousness, I resolutely feel… "referring to a woman's anatomy in any way literally is either a sign of either erectile dysfunction or horny desperation." And its always a woman. Its always Maa Ki… or Behen --- etc, or the anuvaad in chaste English


When I say Cutie Ya for that matter, it sounds like upaasna and not vaasna. And I use the word quite prudently. And very privately... I don't think of the V or the G spot when I use the word. I just use it! On the contrary I find the F word quite interesting; I like the word because it is not sexist. Anyone can do a fuck up! Aadmi/aurat no bar. You see.
For all those of those infertile men who use the C word, I have devised some words to add to their vocabulary. After all, we cant let out the man alone. There has to be an Indian Penal (lol) Code na. Like we have a C code. I have realized that we cannot stop people from using those words. They need our sympathy and should be treated as patients for their disorder that's a part of their psyche.

And ghalib has said "if you cant cure them, join them" (was ghalib na?)
So if you are a woman or respect women, and you spot that there are many people interested in verbalizing your tops and bottoms… or pay respects to your mother's and sister's. Just cure them with similar words. But change the gender.

Say Bratha Fcuker or Father Ch@d


Funny as it may sound. Men don't have the guts or the balls. They cant bear slurs if reversed.
Cure the dimwitted Y chromosome by giving them a taste of their own excreta.

P.S. Please lets observe a two minute silence for the lost morality of men world over.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Shah Rukh never rukhs

An odd name. An ugly face. Voice minus intonation and highly stammered. Television boy. Short stature. Godfatherless - He could well be dismissed as one of the many people who come to Bombay from all parts of the world with a belief that they will transverse their way to the top. Bollywood is a dream not for the faint hearted. It is easy to realize though for those with conviction, and élan. From the boy who looked so plain and frail in a television serial called fauji, to a little circus manager role in Circus, to his first break in Deewana opposite Divya Bharati and Rishi Kapoor. He moved swiftly, and walked past all controversies that kept others lured. He is someone with such a steadfast focus and energy nonpareil. All was not very hunky-dory with his career; he has his usual bout of crazy hiccups in bollywood and allegations behind the curtains about his alleged love affairs and constant speculation about his sexuality. Much that no one knows till date the true picture. There are theories of course. With lots of mirch masala in it. There was this allegation that he has been through casting couch. But he wasn’t forced to do anything he himself agreed to it. Then there were rumour mills whistling about something cooking between him and Divya Bharati but the most infamous was some sections of the media speaking about him and Juhi Chawla. I have some friends who tell me that her kids look like him. For a commoner, every star is slutty. Some might be true, some might be false. But we would not stop our habit of being judgmental about them. And are they complaining? No! that keeps them on the top and on every lip. So be it unsaid words about his alleged bisexuality with Gauri and Karan, or his fallout with Aditya Chopra and Amitabh Bachchan … things would be well kept in a sealed envelope.

I still remember the brashness and arrogance in him when he walked up the stage for his first filmfare for deewana.. and he very brazenly declared “I will be back for more”. That was the killer confidence he had in himself. He was so focused. And knew that success was coming his way. He paved his own path, and was the architect of his own dreams. Most importantly, he believed very strongly on his dreams. It was hard to imagine that this was the same guy who is now at the tusauds wax museum who bared his butt in Maya Memsaheb.


pardon the graphic language in the video. Body double?? dont think so.

Anyone else could have got branded as an Arty film actor after a film like that and that kind of haklata hua speech. But speak to Shahrukh now, you would see no traces of his stammer. No, I am not a big fan of his.but am a lover of his energy and sensible PR management.

Does every film of Shahrukh rule the box office? No. It doesn’t. he has given some very horrible duds in the history of Bollywood. (remember Guddu?, trimurti??o darling yeh hai india???) And there are some films of his like the RabNe Bana Di Jodi which weren’t run away successes. As a producer, he has been extremely unlucky. He started with Ashoka.. and several flops like one two ka four, phir bhi dil hai Hindustani.. that he finally decided to call off his very on-the-face alliance with juhi chawla and switched to Farah Khan… life has been a song for him ever since. So will it be with his tryst with sports. A thing that I love about him is that he never fails to try, and he never shies of failure… and he learns from his failures to perfect his art, be it advertising, films, or sports.

I was thinking that Shah Rukh is suddenly out of news and that we have nothing to speak about him. And Bang, came in the controversy as he was detained in the Newark airport for questioning due to his last name. Racial profiling??? Naa. I don’t think so. Incidentally, his next flick with KJo and KJol – My Name Is Khan is on floors. What perfect timing for controversy.

I dont find him to be a class actor, but my view doesnt matter in teh chorus cheer for him.

If it was not the film My Name Is Khan... this would have not been in news at all. Shahrukh is a religion by himself. What racial profiling of a man. The man who is a race apart!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Tagged Me!

  1. What time did you get up this morning?
    7 am

  2. How do you like your steak?
    My steak?? Ishh that is such a vulgar thing to reveal

  3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema?
    Love aaj kal

  4. What is your favorite TV show?
    I loved "kyun ki saas bhi kabhi bahu thi". Seriously. It had a good balance of both sati savitry and slutty savitri. After kyunki, im in deep mourning

  5. If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
    Bombay, India.

  6. What did you have for breakfast?
    I don't have breakfast. Vrat hai, acha BF ke liye.


  7. What is your favourite cuisine?
    Pav Bhaji : The perfect orgy of vegetables.

  8. What foods do you dislike?
    NON VEG.

  9. Favourite Place to Eat?

    Any clean place.


  10. What kind of vehicle do you drive?
    Vehicle??? No, I am a train/bus person. It's environment friendly and it helps me connect with my city.


  11. What are your favorite clothes?
    eeny meeny shorts and topless (shut up – don't fantasize now)

  12. Where would you visit if you had the chance?
    Germany. Im deeply influenced by Schindler's list.

  13. Cup 1/2 empty or 1/2 full?
    Either, just ensure the cup is double its size.


  14. Where would you want to retire?
    id be working on something or the other all my life. No retirement.


  15. Favorite time of day?
    Nights.


  16. Where were you born?
    Army Hospital, Barrackpore contentment, Near Calcutta, West Bengal.


  17. What is your favorite sport to watch?
    I am a voyour. But you'd def not want to know the sport I love watching… do you?


  18. Who do you think will not tag you back?
    matbal?


  19. Person you expect to tag you back first?
    hein???


  20. Who are you most curious about their responses to this?
    everybody.


  21. Bird watcher?
    Ohh yes.


  22. Are you a morning person or a night person?
    im a raat rani


  23. Do you have any pets?
    my girl… lisa.


  24. Any new and exciting news you'd like to share?
    im SINGLE. (And newly virgin, lol)


  25. What did you want to be when you were little?
    An actor always. Also wanted to do my Doctorate in Maths.


  26. What is your best childhood memory?

    So many...

  27. Are you a cat or dog person?
    Cat person.


  28. Are you married?
    Not legal yet. And not found yet. Please apply.


  29. Always wear your seat belt?

    I prefer the back seat.


  30. Been in a car accident?
    yes car accident. The best bus came and kissed our car. And went off casually as if nothing happened.


  31. Any pet peeves?
    i want to go to Germany


  32. Favourite Pizza Toppings?
    Paneer, Chilly.


  33. Favourite Flower?
    Any flower in a pot. I *hate* bouquets


  34. Favourite ice cream?
    Butterscotch !!!


  35. Favourite fast food restaurant?
    Classique in Matunga, Bombay


  36. How many times did you fail your driver's test?
    I've never tried or fancied trying.


  37. From whom did you get your last email?
    Srushti Rao


  38. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card?
    No store, films films and films. I just need films… and DVDs etc. I can live on films


  39. Do anything spontaneous lately?
    Lately? Im always bloody spontaneous. And often land with my foot in mouth because of that.


  40. Happy with your job?
    Im happy. But keeping with my tradition of multitasking, id want to venture into features writing /column or so parallel with my job.


  41. Broccoli?
    matlab???


  42. What was your favorite vacation?
    fav vacation.. I enjoy staying home. With my DVDs.


  43. Last person you went out to dinner with?
    Varun Kumar.


  44. What are you listening to right now?
    Quick Gun Murugan


  45. What is your favorite color?
    Red.


  46. How many tattoos do you have?
    None. Don't like them.


  47. How many are you tagging for this quiz?
    no one. If you love me. Tag yourself.


  48. In What time did you finish this quiz?
    10 mins or so.


  49. Coffee Drinker?
    filter kaapi.


Ooops missed one… I guess! I can never do something without a small error. Huhhh!

But who cares. chand mein bhi daag hai.. wahwah wah wah . J

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