Monthly Archives: December 2010

Happy New Year!

Standard

It’s New Year’s Eve now. Thus, it’s time people focus on replenishment, make resolutions and vow to make positive changes in their lives. So here I am, not being second to anyone else out there and declaring my set of resolutions for the entire world to see, in the order of least likely to be resolved.

01. Gain weight. 10 more kilo grams would make me ‘visible’.

02. Learn to swim in Piranha-less and Shark-less water.

03. Go, discover a new country. For that make sure ammi sees this list.

04. Read less humor columns. That will buy me more time before I finally declare that I’ve completely gone bonkers.

05. Watch one hour of TV. I sense I’m loosing my general knowledge!

06. Find a new shop to buy butterfly sticker tattoos. They no longer sell them at Liberty Plaza.

07. Before purchasing butterfly tattoos hold a poll among friends and see if they think I would look scary if I wear scorpion tattoos instead. If they say yes, then go for that!

 

 

vs.

 

 

 

08. Start searching for real estate. Building a tree house is the ultimate #01 fantasy.

09. Try to complete the weekend work load soon. Need to have the weekends free to attend for archery practices.

10. Do not forget to replace the belt of denims with a rope or a chain whenever I can’t find it.

11. Get addicted further into the internet for a crystal clear future!

12. Grow a mustache.

13. Associate with thugs. Who knows, such acquaintances might come handy in future.

14. Add more books to the library. No one will dare to question my intelligence when I’m surrounded by heaps of books.

15. —–

Ugh! I’m having second thoughts now, why tamper 2011 with perfection? Instead I’ll wish you all the best of times.

And hope you remember me tomorrow!

Advertisements

South Asian Reading Challenge 2011

Standard

Well, I kind of started to review all the books as I read them. But it seems time doesn’t permit me to be consistent in it. So I decided to sign up for the South Asian Reading Challenge 2011 hosted by S. Krishna’s Books, where I’m planning to attempt for the South Asian Explorer level, reviewing 5 books (with the hope of increasing the number as I go along) of a fairly widespread choice in 2011.

If you are also a keen reader interested, please link yourself here.

And stay excited!

Busted Intellectual By Vihanga Perera: Depicting The Ways One Could Be Busted

Standard

Even though I’m not aware of the statistics, I’m pretty sure Sri Lanka is a country which has more politicians than writers. And among that small number of active writers, only a few stand out.  One such writer is Vihanga Perera. So it is, of course, my nature to pay homage to his incredibly thought provoking poems.

To a poetry novice such as myself, his words initially appear straight forward and very few verses rhyme. However, the way in which his poetry is laid out invites the poems to be read twice, and that is when one finds a deeper, consolidated meaning often concealed in the first reading of a piece.

Hence Vihanga Perera’s poetry collection, Busted Intellectual is a triumph of the genre, and a masterful exposition of the post war political stance in Sri Lanka and some of his personal experiences. Political poems in Busted Intellectual present what feels like a snapshot of the life of the minority of individuals (as it turned out to be, sadly!) in Sri Lanka who share the sentiment,  that this country could have gone for a humane solution, without much ruthless homicides taking place. Thus it is a collection emerged in a sad atmosphere, but one which is peppered with moments of lightheartedness thanks to some of his personal poems. And possibly a very different choice of words to the one you may be accustomed to. (At least it was to me when I first discovered his poetry blog, which you can check in here)

So now let me take the liberty of quoting some of the excerpts from two poems which I feel you would find ‘controversial’, where he is staunch in depicting what he feels right.

From ‘April-May: A Conversation in One Act’,

Prabhaharan: “SF is killable”
Pottu Amman: “Yes. Killable”.
Bomber: “Killable”.
Ravi: “He goes to Medavachchiya”.
State: “The best General of all. Four stars”.
Bomber dies.
Army goes past Kilinochchi.
Pottu Amman and Prabhaharan die.
People: “Is Prabhaharan dead?”
State: “Yes. Dead”.
Monk: “Everything is mortal”.
State: “SF is immortal”.
President: “SF is immortal”
SF salutes. Stamps his foot.

These initial lines remind me moments of a perfectly encapsulated morsel of past in early May 09’, when Sri Lankan army first announced victory over the LTTE, a group of terrorists, when there was no ‘I’ but ‘us’ (President of SL, Mahinda Rajapaksha and General Sarath Fonseka) to glorify.

Dauphin: “No one is immortal”.
King: “Save, by constitution, the President”.
Dauphin: “SF is but mortal”.
1st Officer: “SF is mortal”.
2nd Officer: “Yes. mortal“.
3rd Officer: “Mortal”.
Mrs. SF: “SF may die”.
Dauphin Inverted: “Die a slow, natural death”.

And quite ironically these lines reflect how SF was crucified as a traitor later on, solely due to the fact that he worked as the chairmen of the army procurement committee in a situation where his son-in-law had some connection to one of the bidders for the tender and according to tender guide lines (note ‘guide lines’) one should not sit in a tender committee if a relative is bidding. Since there had been no corruption involved, such a guide line violation warranted a warning only. And then how a ‘false’ allegation were made against him sending him to jail for two years, saying he engaged in politics while serving the country as the chief of defense staff. (The allegation rings false and cooked up, especially when the three people who testified against SF joined hands with MR’s regime next day, two as ministers and one as a top officer)

Now from ‘The Public Enemy’, where he discusses some harsh realities of the Sri Lankan psyche,

Three of us are skeptical – that he has been killed.
We protest that he had, by then, retreated
Escaping onslaught in that final minute.
They tell us an ambulance was shot at and blasted
But, we don’t believe that he was actually in it.

For some strange reason, this all looks so unreal,
Unheard of – unnerving and, by vote, unwanted.
This ambiguous death of a branded terror-releaser,
Whose metal had kept the South all haunted, two
Decades of carnage and the ballast’s worth
In those years when no reports came home from North.

Finally, while inviting you to consider reading Busted Intellectual the next time you are in the mood for poetry, I will leave you with one of my favourite excerpts from his personal poem, ‘Deep Down We Both Used to Breathe’, which is both traumatic and beautiful,

Many years later, you tell me stories
Of how Norwegian wood sweats in summer.
“Oh, good” I say, thinking all the time
Of the Beatles’ song. You say: “hey,
Did I do you wrong?”

No. In fact, it was only I, who
Dreamed of six other women
While being in love with you. And at the
Same fatal hour, even as you denied it,
I spoke and I wrote of love that’s true

I’m Taurus But I’m Not A Bull

Standard

I spent good 21 years of my life thinking I’m destined to live with ‘C’. Seriously. My surname is Chandrasiri. I play Chess. I study Computing and Information Systems. I follow CIMA degree. So it is basically like living in ‘Cee-laa-land’.

Good for me, all the while I’ve been in this emotional affair with ‘A’ too! I like Art. I aspired to be an Architect. Now I want to become an Archer. And the list goes on.

But you know what becomes of you, when you practice adultery, right? At one point you get damned confused, like I’m now, not knowing your true love is C or A! That is when you feel like running to Artemis, the greek goddess, make her consult the oracle and pick one mistress for you! Depending on your luck, that is when it  hits you “Oh! Alas! The oracle is no more” and sadly but quickly, gets followed by a BANG! If you survive from that big bang (provided you are smart enough!) it strikes you, “Aah! Isn’t it what Google is used for?” and trust me, if that happens all you could feel next is your fingers swiftly punching ‘Astrology Careers’ on Google search!

So now you know how I ended up reading ‘Taurus Career Aptitudes’, of which the likelihood of occurring I’m going to analyze below. And mind you, it’s not because I believe in horoscopes. But solely due to a kick I got, which I now blame on weather!

  • Art dealer – It’s in favour of my mistress A! And yes, it has something to do with art. But unlikely. I like to design things myself and not to sell what others have designed.
  • Banker – Likely! As long as I feel it’s going to give me enough money to buy books and space to read them!
  • Businessperson in an established field – Like a prominent business tycoon or a business angel? Hell, yeah!
  • Construction worker – It didn’t consider my gender, I assume.
  • Doctor (general practitioner rather than surgeon) – NO WAY! I suffer from hemophobia!
  • Financial planner – Now that sounds more like me! I’m the one when it comes to savings! (And every cent of those ‘savings’ being spent on books is altogether a different question I think!)
  • Florist – Hmm. Life amidst flowers smells good. Yet not enough to attract me.
  • Gardener – I call gardening ‘drudgery’!
  • Jewelry maker or dealer – I rather opt to be a jewelry designer.
  • Teacher (nursery, kindergarten, and early grades) – As long as I don’t have to scream at the top of my lungs, consider me your girl!
  • Landscaper – This is the best one, so far! Like it! And may be even love it!
  • Model – Not in this life!
  • Musician – Pianist? Violinist? Guitarist? Perhaps something to scrutinize later in life.
  • Plant nursery worker – It is the cub of drudgery, I suppose!
  • Pottery maker – Let me think a bit… No.
  • Sculptor – You can reside next to Landscaper.
  • Singer (most Tauruses have good voices) – (Blushed by within-the-brackets-comment and with memories run to good old school days!) I guess no!
  • Wrestler – Hahahaaaaaa! Good joke at the end! Should see my size!

Hmm… With it I see no luck, just as I thought!

So the way things unfold, only wish I won’t become a housewife by default!