Friday, November 4

Heart in a box

I was watching today's episode of 'Grey's Anatomy' and it made me think quite a bit about my own life. I am not a doctor to know if the medical procedures they show in the series is correct or wrong but in this particular episode there was a beating heart in a box. A real beating heart kept alive through a machine. In a series where the characters have seen as many deaths as they do, this beating heart - not in a person's body or stored in ice but - in the box represented inspiration. The Doctors looked at the heart in the box and got inspired, and it was every bit the miracle that all the Doctors needed to keep going through their day. The heart made them realize how passionate they felt about their work and it was so amazing to see them go back to work so much more inspired by looking at a heart in a box.

Since I have my final essay due by the end of this week and none written, I got to start thinking about my own line of inspiration.

Ever since I first read about Oscar Wilde, I was hooked. The man who lived so grandly and had to die in poverty, you cannot get a better artistic story than that. And when I read about the thousands of money Lord Alfred Dolygus made by thrashing Wilde after his death, it just made me more convinced I have got to know more about him. I couldn't wait to know more about him. Hence when I had to write a paper on his books, it gave me a chance to know more about him, his life, what he thought about. Although I am aware even reading all of his works will never let me glimpse more that a little of his life, I couldn't wait to start on my essay. Couldn't wait to write down all the things on my mind into paper and keep note.

In my second year, I wasn't a huge fan of Emily Dickinson. In fact I missed my tutorial for that class. I am not a huge fan of poems in general, was never realy good at it hence my reluctance to attend another poetry class. Turns out, my tutor waited for me thus forcing me to take the class. During that class, my tutor said the most extraordinary thing. It is interesting to know that most of her poems hasn't been titled, but instead numbered. He said it was because Dickinson died before she titled her poems and the publishers had to improvise and number it. It was so amazing to know that we could read her work, research her life and analyze her text thousand of times but still never find out what realy made her write what she did. It was such an intriguing fact, I haven't stopped reading her poetry ever since.

I have to write on Postmodernism this week. I spend the whole semester on her and considering I am in my fourth year, it should be easier to write that any of the other essays. But there is no 'heart in the a box', no incident that jumped up and made me want to write about it. Encounters that made me want to read more, to write more, to not wait till I could start writing. You can call me just plain lazy but I am not inspired. Not inspired to write about postmodernism, the way I was about Wilde, Dickinson or any other writers for that.

I have to write it though - it counts towards 20% of my final marks but I am just waiting and watching for the heart in the box to inspire me.  

Wednesday, October 12

Love over-rated

Just recently one of my close friend broke up with her boyfriend - turns out he was cheating on her - and since then she hasn't stopped crying. Now she is a perfectly healthy girl, but ever since the break up she hasn't been outside her room, she doesn't socialize with people and the minute you even mention love or other similar words, she starts crying.

So last night after one of our you-are-too-good-for-him crying sessions I was telling her to move on when she said she feels so heartbroken, she can't function properly and it got me thinking about love and the power people give to this lone emotion.

I am always mystified with the idea that love is the only all consuming emotion there ever is. The reaction of people who have just broken up, my friend included, is example enough. There are so many other relationships- friendship, parents, motherhood - yet you never hear casualties created because someone argued with his best friend or parents or mother. You just hear plenty of he/she killed herself because of a failed relationship - that is the most extreme scenario. But even in a normal breakup,most girls are so heartbroken after a relationship, they almost turn into vegetables and boys are even worst, drinking and throwing their life away because the girl of his dream does not reciprocate these same feelings.So I wonder what is it about love that makes the person so miserable he/she is willing to throw away an otherwise perfectly healthy life? 

Yes, a few good heart-to-heart is good for any person - it takes the load off. Crying for a good measure of time is also good, frees your heart of ill-fated emotions and well, clears your eyes off dusts. But to be crying continuously, like it wasn't a boyfriend you broke up with but your whole life is just plain dumb. And to throw away the prospects of a normally healthy life because one single relationship did not work out is even dumber. It is just a relationship that ended, not your life, so why waste away your whole day on a relationship that could not even withstand a simple hurdle.

Love is not suppose to make you so weak that you feel you can not exisit beyond it. That is not love, that is attachment, desperation, the terror of being lonely, name it anything you like but it is not love. And by the way, your heart is a muscle, it can not break. If it did, you would actually be dead instead of complaining you feel dead inside. I have never been a romantic person. The notion of a Prince charming is too tacky for me, if I see a couple holding hands, the first thought that enters my mind is sexual, and even with the 'love of my life', my idea of a happily ever-after is a few good years at best. Sure, I believe there is an intense emotion that makes you feel like you can not like anyone else as much as you do a particular person, but that is just that for me - an intense emotion - not my whole life ready to unravel if that person doesn't like me back. And if falling in love is going to make me a quivering mass of hysterical jello, then I don't want to fall in love.

Wednesday, September 14

I will write

You want me to look beautiful. Wear a pretty dress. Make my hair. Stand still, looking like a fragile doll. Opening my mouth only to sing praises of you.

I know what you expect of me. A naive do-gooder who writes sentimental love stories. A girl only concerned about fashion, petty lover's quarrels and frivolous little problems.

Nothing bold.Nothing stark.Nothing that will challenge you.

I refuse to bow down to it.

I will write. About Violence. About sex. About racism. I will write about the whole weight of the world and you won't even know it. I will write.With no shame, no explanation, no excuse for my writings.

You can love my work. You can hate it, criticize it. But you are not patronizing my work with your expectation and ideals. These aren't your opinions. These are mine. I am not professing to be good. But I am not accepting yours are any better just because you have a different view.

Note-This article was written after an intense Feminism class about limitations faced by many female writers.

Tuesday, September 13


When I think of the last time I wrote anything it makes me shudder to remember that it was almost 3 months ago. Cliché as it may sound, I couldn't write because I was busy contemplating the course of my life. Realy I was! I graduated last month, you see. And if you know me, you would know I was deciding whether I should come back and search for a job or extend my stay and continue for another year.

I remember when I was a fresh class 12 graduate and got selected for scholarship; I singed a bond with the government agreeing to be among the teacher-candidates. They said we were the promise of the future, the future lecturers, send away not in India but in 'Third Country' as they put it to become better educators. Sending us away with so much promise that when we complete our course we would come back and be directly appointed as assistant lecturers. 

Now,if you have been following any newspapers you will already know the chances of that happening are Nil. Now that we are about to complete our course, we are neither young enough to believe RGOB is going to deliver their promise nor naive enough to assume it is that simple. I am not saying students deserve to be appointed as assistant Lecturers just because they are on scholarship. There are students from India and Sherabtse who must work equally hard to get the same position. We are not so naive as to think there won't be other students applying for the same position, so directly being appointed as an assistant lecturer might as well be a myth. However, the vast number of competitor for the same slot is not what bothers me; once you are in your final year and have seen the number of unemployed graduates, you kind of expect the competition. You prepare yourself for an even higher number of students competing with you next year. So a given number of graduates clashing with you for your desired choice of spot is a given. 

What disheartens me is the number of slots available to compete for in the first place.This year the vacancy for the position for an English Assistant lecturer in all of the University under RUB is zero. Yes, you heard it right, there isn't any slot for English assistant lecturers in any of the universities, yet no one can contest that the majority numbers of students graduating each year is always BA English. So I am wondering what will happen to all these BA English graduates? What are they going to do?No doubt,there is journalism but there are already so many journalism graduates trolling around, literature students would surely be in a disadvantage. Ofcourse, just because there is no slot for an English assistant does not necessarily mean the graduates will be left behind. I am sure they will find a job in the end, either after RCSC or private but what are the chances that the job they get selected for will be the subject they majored in.

RUB managed to squeezed a single slot for 'Creative Arts' in Paro College of education, and one can argue that it is enough but any literature students will know there is a vast difference between 'creative arts' and 'literature'. I am not a science student so I cannot profess anything of the sort for them, but they are students as well, so perhaps their concerns are as similar to mine. I know for a fact that there are only 4 slots for Mathematics this year and I am already friends with 6 Mathematics graduates who are applying for the same slot. So now I am lost as to which among them will manage to bag the slot.

Competition is a fact of life, everyone expects it, but what if there is no slot to compete for in the first place? I certainly did not undertake literature for three years so go Home and work in a job completely irrelevant to literature. I certainly would not be completely competent in teaching a subject I don't know much about and I certainly would not be passionate about it. With the number of graduates increasing and vacancies decreasing every year, if the number of slots of English assistant lecturer is zero this year,I certainly cannot imagine any improvement next year. 

I am aware that it is usually when RCSC examinations are about to take place that there are so many articles about graduates, you might want to gag over another similar piece.But my days lately have been filled with browsing RCSC and RUB website hoping they will announce something, anything that will reassure me that while I am holing up my part of the deal, they will honour theirs. And if only I was sure there was going to be a job to compete for in the first place when I get back, I would not have been contemplating my next course anyway.

Friday, June 17

Best Friends!

When we are small, at one point or other the English teachers always ask the students to write a paragraph about your Best Friend. So we write usually about the person who sat next to us at that moment without even realizing the weight that comes with the question. I just thought Today should be my turn to write about mine.

I met her when she was 8 or a year older. We were in class 4 then. I remember asking her to help me draw a diagram for me and after that we just became friends. She is my best Friend, the best person I could ever have. I am sure everyone has said the same about one friend or another, but not with as much conviction as I do right now. And if you knew just how much time we spend being friends apart from each other than with each other, you will be surprised we even managed.

I remember one particular incident that I think I will always remember. When we were pretty small we once volunteered to write charts for our class, she being the artist drew the whole picture, wrote the entire description and decorate it and in the end, selflessly sign it with both of our names. Just for the fact that I sat with her while she worked. She is that kind of a person. We used to be classmates then. After that, we just became inseparable. We lived in the same building, sat next to each other in class, had the same garden and even had our roll number right after one another! We would always be together.

I had to change schools at the end of grade VI, but it hardly mattered. Each year we would write letters. I would get one just before my Birthday, one around 1st August for Friendship Day, one before each exam wishing me luck and an after asking me about my results. It is not that we could not call each other up and talk like any other teenager, I guess we preferred the old way of writing letters. Anyone who has ever received a letter would know the difference between a phone conversation and a personal letter send only for you. They make you feel special. We choose to write letters. And at the risk of sound very childish and cliche, I still have my bunch of letters from her as I know she has mine.

When I saw her next, it had been 6 years since we saw each other. Lots of things had happened in both our lives by then but that didn't matter either. The moment something serious came up, she would always the be first one to know and She would always be the first one to respond. We chatted for a day and talked about everything and nothing at all. I don't even remember what we talked about, we just walked the whole Changangkha Lhakhang road talking!

The things with us is we spend more time apart than we do together. Right after we met, both of us had to leave for our Course respectively. She is in Sri- Lanka right now doing her MBBS and I am here in Wollongong. It has been 3 years since we last saw each other. But it has never affected us. We write to each other everyday even now. The maximum number has been 18 E-mails in a single day. Our Facebook walls are full of wall posts from each other and if a sad status comes up, each of us will be the first ones to respond.
I have good friends,lots of them. I am not saying I don't but she will always be my Best. They say your Soul mate is suppose to make you a better person, they say the only person who will stand by your side no matter what, is suppose to be your partner, but Not for me. She is the one who makes Me a better person. She is the one who I know will always stand by my side no matter what and I am realy grateful for having her. I know this sounds like a clichéd teenage piece for anyone to read, but this One I am writing it for her so I am allowed to be emotional.

Monday, June 13

I am Fat

'God, I need to reduce my weight' - That is pretty much what I always say every time I look at a mirror. Don't get me wrong, I am not fat. In fact I am thin, thinner than most girls I know. But somehow I always end up saying the same thing.It is like a refrain that is stuck in my head - 'I need to lose weight, I need to lose weight. I need to lose weight...

I am not a very active person so I never exercise. In fact the only exercise I have each day is my 15 minutes walk to uni and back and that too is spend only because I absolutely have to walk. The last time I ran to stay healthy would be Sports day in Yangchenphug and that would be 3 years ago! I don't usually starve myself to death, but that does not mean I eat healthy. I eat a lot when I feel active enough to cook but if I am not I can't be bothered to make the effort. Everyone tell me I am thin and I am. For a girl who is turning 22 soon, I am 39 and the heaviest I have been is 44. I know I am underweight and believe me, I get enough scolding from everyone around me to keep me company. But that does not stop me from obsessing over my weight. I don't want to be thinner than I am now for I am sure I might catch some horrible disease but I don't want my weight to increase too.

I still think I am fat. I am not saying it is true but it doesn't always have to be false for me not to believe it. I often wondered why that is the first though that pops in my mind when I looked in the mirror despite knowing that I am thin. I think the answers lies in the fact that we girls always pitch ourselves against each other. I can be optimistic and say all girls are friendly about our weight but the fact is we are not. There is always constant competition.We compare our looks, our hair, our clothes, so why should our body weight be any different. And for any girl, one will always be fatter compared to anyone else, no matter the truth! For me, I have always been called to be among the thin category. The first comment people give me when they see me is that I am thin, either as a complement or complain I can't say. Even girls who are thinner than me think I am thin and now I have internalized it so much I realized I don't want to become fat because then I wouldn't be the thinnest among my friends.

I can be typical and say obsessing over body weight is overrated but it wouldn't be the truth. I do care. I want to be thin and I want to remain thin. Because that is how I grew up, thinking that being thin is in vogue, the fashion that is 'in' all the time, the thing that most people obsesses over hence my mirroring obsession. There are enough articles written about girls obsessing over their weight. There are lots of girls who think they are fat complaining that thin girls are now on the verge of disappearing. There are people who complain that girls obsesses over their body so much as to starve themselves to death. But writing from a girl who has always been called thin, believe me we would not try so hard to be thin if only you did not want to be that thin. I don't think anyone would starve themselves to death if only it wasn't the 'it' things at the moment. 

Furthermore, it has only been a while since things has changed and anorexic has been termed a disease with boys stating 'bones are for dogs and we prefer meat on our women'. But the fact remains that being thin has remained in vogue for so long, it is difficult to come out of it. Thus the comparison and desperation to starve ourself to death just to be thin. 

Friday, June 3

What DO I write about?

Sometimes I wonder if I write junk. Does my writing matter? Do people read? Do they even care what I write about?

I want to write love stories, the small fights that underlines every story, the big one that tears every single one of them apart, the small romantic gestures between the two points, the heartbroken lovers. I want to write about every little detail that matter in a love story.But it hardly matter to readers who are already out of love or married for that matter, for they have already been there, done that, written about that. So why do I bother to write something that has been repeated over and over again? All the stupid arguments, the petty quarrels, the love tryst, it might as well sound like a stupid teenager's puppy love to the readers.

I want to write about fashion, about the endless obsession that comes with it, the ever changing trends that stick to one place for less than a second, the compulsive behavior of girls to stick to that millisecond. But people say fashion is just a waste of time, a frivolous that only those who don't have anything better to do concerned themselves with.  They say it is just appearances, a mean to provide vain people with more time to be narcissistic. And I refuse to be defined as a girl more concerned with fashion than climate change.

I want to write about climate change, fight about global warming and say I do care about the environment. I do care about resources. I want to write about how each of us live in ignorance thinking the other person is doing something for the environment. But there are already people writing thesis about these findings, people with banners protesting against climate change, students being taught environment-saving strategies in schools so am I not late in thinking to write about it?

I want to write about politics, argue that the present government is not doing enough, debate about the current tobacco control act, argue that  just because the government is acting inhumane does not mean it gives everyone the right to throw stones at them! But hey, I am just a kid who reads about it in the Newspaper and forums anyway. What will I know about politics that other already haven't debated about? What will I have an opinion about that others haven't had already?

I want to write. I want to write about the daily happening of my life, about the nonsensical movies that I watch, the little debates that roommates have, but hey everyone is going through the same experiences everyday. Why would anyone want to read about the monotonous banality of one person's life? Isn't the person who experience it themselves more apt to write about it than the person who presumes to know about them?

I want to write. I want to write my own opinion about everything, about nothing, about the world. I want to point out things I don't like, things that I want to change, things I think should be changed but then you can simply think of me as a cranky young girl dissatisfied with her life enough to make others' uncomfortable. I want to be creative, write poems flouting conventions, create stories without grammar, write magic realism within my reach, try something new. But then I will just be the strange girl who has no command of the language and created a blog only because it seems to be in vogue.

I want to write. Without reasons. Without excuses. Without fear of being termed frivolous or arrogant for what I write. I want to write but like The Picture of Dorian Gray's quote, "Every portrait that is painted with feeling is a portrait of the artist, not of the sitter", people who write so often write their own life in paper, and I am so confused I am not sure which face to present to be scrutinized.