A Quest on Overdrive … :)

An eccentric rambler on life's lessons and mercies, found and lost… :)


May the odds ever be in your favour

The catachresis of a statement
Made famous by the Girl
Who did beat the odds
However engineered it was
Designed to obliterate
But then, the odds
Were in her favour.

Over and over again.

As it probably could be
For me?

Should I choose
In the face of
Well-meaning, scaffolded

But will it?
Will I let it?
The odds are strange things.
Always surprising
Obliging even.

So much so, you believe
It could be.

And the soul then hungers.
In the games it plays, to get it.

And so it plays out.

Till you realize.

The odds. Odd.
Could they ever
Be in your favour?

And then you live

That paradox.


8 July, 2016



Apparently this is one of the most difficult words in English to explain. So, what does it mean? How ’bout we try and figure it out? That is if you haven’t figured it out yet. Errrmmm… you go. I understand. You don’t have the time, and you’d rather be told, so that you can go on to that other bit of reading you had to do; (or watch that episode of the serendipitous Once Upon a Time, which, incidentally I’m watching, yes, FINALLY. S01E04 done. Yeah. I got a wayyy to go, and don’t you dare tell me the story, most of which I already know, being that die-hard romantic. Serendipity. I tell ya. I had to watch it, and now is the time 🙂 ) Sigh. There I go again. So, no spoonfeeding, hence we try to unravel it 😀 What better than a wee story?

It was Aashna’s comment on Day#2’s story (LINK) that made me want to use it. The gleeful way she jumped at me, tugged at me and implored, in askance, that she be given space. Serendipity. Not Aashna 😀 (One of these days, I’ll probably be begging her on her space 🙂 )

Therefore, a new fable.


It wasn’t the first time Mishika noticed that whenever she happened to go to the Library, he was there, either just before her, or maybe a little while after. But then there were others too, and she couldn’t be sure. Now you, dear reader, must probably wonder why Mishika should notice only him? Ha! Indeed. Something there is that warms your heart, does it not, when you think that?

But Mishika wasn’t the sort to moon. She noticed a lot of things. The way that burnished leaf hung for days on the badam tree, late January, and how a multitude of butterflies of different colours came by the gulmohar trees, sometime in February. The distant pigeon, seeming aimless in their sudden flight, circling, to yet again come back to their perch just between the roof and the netting of the Auditorium. There was a keenness in the way she even looked at you.

Others looked through you sometimes, but not her. I had always noticed that about her. She saw. She noticed. She did not simply hear, but listened. And, that, he noticed too. That charmer, the sportsy, artsy, n’er-do’well rakish mop of deliberately ruffled hair shouted in wild abandon at who he was, a devil-may-care cuteness in the bland practised wickedness of his “look”. A bad boy indeed, was the assessment, many a time from many a teacher, whose misfortune it was to engage him in serious study. He gave elaborately devious answers, laced with subtle sarcasm, that quite went above many a teacher’s head.

I watched, sometimes in sheer joy, as some of them got their comeuppance, them “teachers”. There are times, you know, when some of them do get on their high horse, and their *&@*#$@ in a twist, when what they say isn’t implicitly “obeyed”! For Chrissakes, these are kids, I want to tell them, not soldiers on the field! But who’s to listen, and who’s to fight for them? Duh.

You know what they say about how good girls love bad boys? Cliché, perhaps, but then there was something to it. Mishika, dreamer, listener, charming, piquant girl, came up to me, all of a sudden, one day to talk. I’m easy to talk too, you know. As much as I love to talk, and watch, I do love to listen to those stories. And believe you me, everyone who comes, of their own volition to talk to you has stories within stories, that have wheels within wheels. We’d been on easy terms, she and I, but never had any confidences sprung between us.

Is it okay if I talk to you? She asked one day.

Uh uh. Sure, come sit by me.

It’s something I feel only you can understand, that’s why I wanted to give it a try, She said.

Okay, I said. What’s bothering you? Or should I ask who?

Oh no no no no no… she laughed, and then held that grin, that suppressed a guffaw. I imagined her mocking my earnestness- my inquisitive tone 😀 It isn’t me. It’s him.

Oh. Who?

You know, our in-house wannabe rake. That RDJ look-alike. Raksh. God! He even has the same letter for his first name! I’m positive he’s going to change his name to Raksh Stark one of these days! Giggling, that.

What happened to him now? Got into trouble with the Math teacher? He’s always needling her!

Well, not exactly. You see, we had group work the previous period. We’re in the same group, you know that, and I didn’t get back to my place because he began to sell me the idea of reading JRR Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. Boy! That guy knows how to tell a story, I tell you!

Okay. But what’s the errr… problem?

Well, he got asked by the Math teacher to report in the Staff Room where he was asked what was going on between me and him.


He simply guffawed, I believe, and said nothing. That laugh was the problem!


And nothing. You know, something’s going to happen between us. He isn’t the only storyteller around. Beaming, she left, just as suddenly as she came.

I wanted to call her back and give her a thumbs up. I resisted. After all, I was that nerdy guy in the class, one without the extreme feelings. Or so everyone thought. I just wished she would some day say she wanted to be part of my story too.

I still wish. Why?

I believe in serendipity. There is a world of meaning there, most of it built on hope.


Day#4 of #RamblingsInFebruary

february ramblings

4 February, 2016

This is Chapter ONE

Chapter TWO (LINK)

Chapter THREE (LINK)

(Thank you Aashna 😀 )


You’re worth it!

The day promised to be long. Heck, her class to start the day. He missed last year’s class.  No one claimed his attention. No one insisted he bring his book. He could conveniently and silently slumber, mentally. Play games, lose himself in a whole game, playing at multiple terminals. He had even wondered if he should simply not put in any effort his mother pushed him to, in order to pass. But there were limits to how much his imagination could rule. Reality had to intrude.

And, so, a new class. A new person, the same though, each day, to begin. He knew her. He knew how tenacious she could be. And that she’d allow nothing to escape her eagle eye. He gave himself up to the certain knowledge that she’d zero in on him, and make life difficult. He’d have to live, real-time.But he was pleasantly surprised. She smiled at him, and left him alone, to do as he wished, in the second last bench, then the last one, and then, as his turn at the front benches rotated, the first, second, third, and yet again, to the second last. Not a peep out of her, as a week and yet another half passed. He heaved a sigh of relief, and moved on, day-dream-wards.

Till that day, a month ago. Suddenly, out of the blue, she summoned him to the first bench, away from his comfort zone. She spoke often, directly, to him. She kept his mind zinging, ensuring that he needed to concentrate, directing sudden questions at him, to gauge his understanding. He had to participate. No matter that he could not relate, or could not give that satisfactory response, she’s put words into his mouth.

Still he resisted. He’d come unprepared. She let him prepare. She’d give him space to make his assignments complete, she’d give him leeway, and not call his parents when he knew she had to, in order to keep her sanity at least. Unwelcome and grudging though it was, he was beginning to respect the way in which she persevered, badgered and coerced without him knowing, it seemed.

Till last week, Thursday, when a perverse streak in him surfaced, yet again, and he came with studied nonchalance, his work incomplete. It had to be her bad hair day. He never knew when the swift rapier sharp words hit, but he found himself in detention. A phone call was made, to his father, who gladly agreed to have his son stay back. She had assured his father she’d drop him home. No escape.

Sullenly he waited after school, watching his friends leave. Friends? Ha! How could they just leave? She called him, and asked him to wait in class, leaving a small package for him. Eat, she said, and I’ll join you in five minutes. He opened the packet. A vegetable puff and a cutlet. Wow. And boy! Was he hungry! He made short work of it, and wondered how he could continue to stay mad at her. He had to try though. It did very little for his self-respect to suddenly be pliant and willing. But what could he do other than just wait it out?

She came in, suddenly, briskly, asked him to sit. Opening his book to show her what he’d done, he quavered, wondering how he was going to word his half hearted apology. He felt he owed it to her, for her concern about the state of his stomach at least. She knew fourteen-year-old boys, that he realized.

Out of the blue, she asked him about his daily routine, his tuition classes, the subjects he liked, and did not, and the general methodology of his learning pattern; what he’d liked to do, if he didn’t have time to come school, or the desire to. They spoke in his mother tongue, and did not study a word, or write, or read. They simply talked. Again, grudgingly he acknowledged her ability to do just what he never thought she would. She was a wily one. He’d have to up his guard some more. However, in the course of simply sharing simple things, he managed to let slip a lot of closely held secrets. How self-conscious he was. How he hated to be laughed at, and how the others in class would, knowing this. How he could not get along with most of the boys. How he hated to ask for help.

How an hour fled, he did not realize. Then, in a couple of minutes, his father was there, to pick him up, having arranged it with his teacher. She spoke to him, suggested a few things, patted him on his back, and did not ask anything else of him, other than he commit himself to being better, because no one else could, for him. Hearing it from her, it made that difference. He’d almost decided to forgive her.

Till yesterday. When he got summarily thrown out. He’d pushed the limits of the Devil’s patience. He smirked at that memory. How apt! The analogy too. Though guilt tinged, and tingled where it should not, really. Nothing was complete for that day’s work, despite reminders.

So, there he was, reluctant to face her that day. More so as his work was complete and she’d know. In an about face, she did not ask him, or anyone. Instead, she got the whole class to do a written task, in class. Identifying about fifteen students, she asked for their work. He, of course, had to be one. Every now and then, she’d glance his way, and nudge, with her expression, in a manner that only he could make out. He gave her full marks for discretion. He did not want to, but then, he sighed, and did. They had to write about rains. He loved the rains, but he did not know what to write.

Half an hour passed. The bell rang. She collected the books and left. The books were returned an hour later. He didn’t open his book; he knew it would be bleeding. Her strokes were vicious, to him, each time she’d taken a look at his work. So what was new?

The last period came by, and he was in a hurry to go. Arranging his books to take home, he spied the note book. What the heck! he thought. I might as well get it over with, before Amma does. Cautiously he turned to the page. There! Red. Red. Red. But wait… seriously? Oh God! Really?

A fine attempt, she wrote. Try to write in paragraphs, and organize your points better.

Damn. For the first time, he understood that girly shampoo ad, that he laughed at all the time!

11 July 2013
Based, loosely, on a real time incident. Fictionalized appropriately. But of course 😛



To the rapt fifty, that day
(Or was it forty-eight?)
I ranted.

When I rant
They need to be rapt!
Or else… 😛
The ogre, you see, is at work!

I, as usual, on my soapbox-
About clichés –
In speeches, in essays
In letters, in e-mails
They’d need to write
For me to evaluate.

Class Eight.
Writing tasks 😀
Now you’d be a-thinking-
This here lady’s really
Got a nut loose.
Clichés, and Class Eight?

Well, yes. I did.
They listened. They giggled.
I swear I even heard some snorting too! 😛
In the next fifteen minutes
I had to be done. Just in time I did.
They were saved, by the bell! 😛

And so, I forgot, as I suppose, they did too.

Ta-da! Surprise!
Exams time, and papers galore
(That, incidentally, is where I’m at 😛 )
Some neat, some spidery
Some short, some too darned lengthy!
Some diatribes, some earnest
Some irreverent, some irascible

And some – God help me!
To wake me from the stupor
of the overdose of the work-
For, I spy …

Cliché.! I jump. I cheer.
I look again. Ooooh yes!
Right along there – c l i c h e’
That dashing tiny accent too, to boot!
I have never been more blessed! 😛

Never mind that the child wrote:
I quote:
“It’s a cliché to say speeches like this
About the topic; and put me well in my place!
I do this fist pumping grunt of satisfaction.
I accept that criticism.
And I do that clichéd thingy.

I write a ramble.
This a-way.

Clichés are good.

23 March, 2013.
A ‘eureka’ moment 😀