Kindergarten Classroom

The Escalator

Karen’s blonde hair had almost started reaching shoulder. She ran her hand through her locks and puffed it up so that she could pretend that it was more voluminous that it actually was. She hadn’t ever been fond of the way each strand seemed to be taking a separate life decision for itself when she herself was not able to take one. Sometimes she just wished the she had jumped aboard the ship with Derick. By now, they could have been sunbathing in a distant island as their kids built sand castle around them.

Karen sneezed as she picked up a filthy handkerchief from the back of her classroom: the eight one this month. It went right into the Lost and Found box, more out of ritual than with any hope of it being claimed.

It’s not like she had always planned to be crawling around in an unnecessary colourful classroom but even she could see her memory diminishing as the days progressed. On most days it did not affect her but sometimes things just went out of hand. Just that morning, she had forgotten what the colour of a carrot was. She just stood there staring at her kindergarten class like they had asked her to solve Einstein’s relativity theory.

‘Always think about your happy place,’ her mother’s advice rings in her head each time she experienced her lapses. It was easier said than done but she always tried her best. Karen could see a larger than life cage rise up in front of her. Completely devoid of any existence inside it, the structure lured the crowd into a deep lull. It was at that moment that her father would walk on the stage with a large black cloth, the darkness of which only a crow could compete with. He would request some audience member to step up and examine the cloth. Once that was done, he would ask them to tie him up the best they could, place him in an appliance that would render him immobile, cover him with the dark cloth, and lock the cage behind them. The audience would witness the cloth move for a while until it descended into a strange stillness. The trick was to make the audience wait but not so much that they begin to doubt you. Just as the first sign of impatience seeped in, the cloth would rise to reveal a glorious tiger in place of where the man had been laid down.

Karen smiled as she thought of the incident: her father would always walk from the back of the hall and step inside the cage with the ferocious beast as it roared all the strength that it could muster from its black and orange fur

‘Orange!’ Karen had exploded at the epiphany. ‘A carrot is orange in colour, kids.’

In response to an assignment: Write a scene of 250-350 words featuring a character with one concrete want and one weakness. Use these two features to drive the action of the plot. Set up the story where every other sentence is a rising action. To help you come up with rising actions, use one word from the following list of twelve words in each sentence that has a rising action.

  • trick
  • memory
  • aboard
  • tiger
  • pretend
  • carrot
  • appliance
  • cage
  • rings
  • crow
  • filthy
  • explode

No Write, No Wrong

“It was the end of only the first day of a three day weekend and I had already binge watched the first season of BBC’s Sherlock.

A three day weekend? Yeah, well… You see a senior professor from our college had passed away. He had a stroke in the middle of the night. Given that he had served most of his life teaching students in the same college, the management decided that it would only be fair to declare the next day as a holiday to pay homage. The ‘next day’ happened to be a Friday.

Needless to say, a lot of my friends decided to make an impromptu trip to the beach. I decided to stay back. Not because I thought it was wrong to go on a celebration on the day that had been declared off for a person who had died. No, that wasn’t the reason AT ALL. The thing is, I was saving up for a bigger trip during the holidays and I knew that with my appetite, I would need a bigger budget.
Don’t judge us. You would have done the same. It’s not like we were not sad that the professor had died. We were; but he died of natural causes and he was quite old – it had to happen some day. Everyone accepted it and went on to the beach. (You’re still judging us, but it’s okay. I don’t care anymore)

Anyway, so it was the end of Friday and I was tired from the constant staring at my laptop screen. I did what any college student would do when he is tired and ready to sleep. I decided to knock on a few doors along the corridor to ask for food. Once my insatiable hunger was partially curbed, I decided to hit the sack.

I had probably only slept for a few hours, when I woke up. It was the middle of the night and for some reason I could not go back to sleep. And you know what happens when you lie on the bed trying to go to sleep and, for some reason, you can’t. That’s right – My brain entered ‘philosopher mode‘. I started to think about life and things that happen in life. Well, mostly my life, but you get the picture.

It was then that I realized that how meagre life really is but yet, there exists an enormous amount of things that we can learn. How did I reach there? I have no clue. It could have been the thought of being alone while all my friends were out to party; it could have been the death of a professor who we saw day in and day and only the other day had seemed like he would go on for ten more years; or it could have been the fact that my phone was blinking with low battery and I was too lazy to get up and plug it on the other side of the room. (With night thoughts, you never really know what leads where).

Whatever reason it might have been, it led me to an epiphany – learning is infinite in this finite life of ours.”


Why did I narrate this story?
If you answered for dark humor – you are right! But not quite there…

The thing is, when I realised that there are so many things to learn, I decided to actively learn more each day. Learn as much as I can before I die. It’s not that I did not do things before. I always tried my hand at everything.
I had always been the person who would tag along with people to play water polo when I could barely keep myself afloat (No, I was not suicidal). But after that night, I decided to actively learn more things. Even if I don’t like them.

So what do I do when I don’t write? I travel. I explore. I observe. I listen. And through all that I learn.
I still binge watch shows. I still travel with friends. I still eat food (I do this a lot, actually). But now, all of that, along with enjoyment, is a learning process as well.

By no means is this a way to inspire anyone to do better. I could care less about that (Grammar tip: This means I do care a little and am trying actively to care less. When you don’t care at all, you say – I couldn’t care less).

I mean, if I had to give a TED talk seminar, even that crowd of sophisticated adults would boo me off stage since instead of inspiring people, I would narcissistically keep talking about myself.

I am just responding to a prompt from Blogging University’s Writing 101, which asked what I do when I don’t write, and I think I have gone on too long with that as well. So, I will stop.

Normally, I end my non fiction posts by my catchphrase asking you to WRITE ON.
But, for today, from one writer to another, take a step back and RELAX.

It’s a Goal

In response to Daily Task of Blogging University’s Blogging 201: Set Three Goals

Blogging 201 has asked us to set three goals for our blog and be specific about it.

Being specific is not really my cup of tea, or any other beverage you might prefer. (See what I mean?)

I mean, what is a response you would give to ‘Are you tired?’ – Typically, a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’. This is my response to the question:
Well, I am not tired per say, but you could think of it as mental exhaustion which has manifested itself into a physical form. Although, the pain in my back is probably from the weights I lifted earlier – I think I messed up my form – but what truly is bothering me is this slight headache…
You get the drift.

The fact that I managed to set three specific goals is actually a big task achieved, you see.

  • Blog three times a week – This might seem a little odd if you look at my blogging history, because you will notice that I blog almost daily – AS OF NOW. I see a lot of work coming my way in the future and I just want to set a goal beforehand to not let myself be lost in the work and completely lose track of the nice thing I have going here.
  • Turn my feature into a challenge – I have a bi-weekly feature which runs every alternate Tuesday (the next one being tomorrow). In it I write a story in 140 characters, the exact amount of characters allowed in a Twitter post (ironic since I don’t even use twitter). After it has run successfully for four months. I want to turn it into a challenge – so that others can participate in it as well. While I am at it, I might also consider making it a weekly feature.
  • Continue to mix genre – If you take some time out to visit my posts or even look at my blog, you will see that I have an array of topics that I write about. And even in that I try to write as different as possible. The thing is, the blog is a learning experience for me – in the sense that I am learning from all the different blogs here. So, that I can incorporate it into my own writing and become a better writer as a whole.

That were the goals that I have set. I tried to be specific but it is still a little vague, I can see that; but it is better than what I always do. And since you have stuck around for this long. Here’s a bonus goal that I have set.

  • Continue to remain anonymous – I won’t lie. It is sometimes tempting to reveal my identity so that people can who I really am, or so that my friends can know that I write a blog but I had always decided to keep this as a separate entity, so I am making it a goal to do so. At least for two more years. See now that was specific, sort of…

Nice of you to stop by and read my goals. Now I am bound to do all of these things just because you have laid your eyes on them. That’s how it is with goals. I hope you are there to see me fulfill them, and hopefully have some fun along the way as well. Till then, from one writer to another, WRITE ON!

Let Me Be

In response to Daily Task of Blogging University’s Writing 101: The Space to Write

Where do I like to be when I write? – Huh? That is a tough question. (Well, actually it’s not but every time somebody says that, it feels like they have thought a lot about the question posed)

The answer: I like to be in my head when I write.

I have developed a habit of zoning out of things in my vicinity when I get to work. It started long time ago – almost around the time Archimedes discovered the Archimedes’ Principle. I realized that a naked man running around the street is too much to handle, so I decided to zone out of the ruckus and concentrate on my writing.

What? – You don’t believe I could be that old? – You believe in Stephenie Meyer’s vampires but have a hard time believing this? – Suit yourself. I will zone you out too.

You Are Zoned Out
You Are Zoned Out

Anyway, what I basically want to say is I don’t really care where I am writing. I can get into the deep trenches of my mind and ignore whatever happens around me. That does NOT mean I don’t get distracted when people come and talk directly to me.

I mean, it’s just annoying when I am minding my own business sitting in a coffee house and a random person walks up to say – ‘Oh! So you’re writer? Nice!’
Yeah, well, it was; until you showed up to disturb me.

Or when I sit in the comfort of my home and the landlord comes up to say – ‘Your rent is due. Make sure you have it tomorrow.’
I will get to it. Writing does not exactly pay pretty well.

Or when I am sitting at the side of the road and a random person walks up to me and says – ‘Hey, you got a little of them drugs?’
No, I don’t! Now get lost!

Okay, fine. I agree the last one was partly my fault, but you get what I mean. I can write anywhere, as long as nobody talks to me directly.

As for what I use. I prefer to use my laptop but it’s not like I carry it around everywhere, mostly because I am worried people might get to know about the songs I downloaded illegally and I don’t want to go to prison. If you think I could pay for bail… Well, why do you think I had to download songs illegally in the first place?
If that does happen some day, I do hope they don’t put me in the same cell as the ones convicted for Heavy Metal downloads.

Criminals

If I am prepared to write outside of the comforts of my home, I carry a notebook along with me (the old fashioned one, not the machine). If not, I carry a pen lest I get an inspiration. Then I just use any piece of paper I can get my hands on. Isn’t that why all restaurants and bars have tissue papers in the first place?


That was all about my way of writing. Now, it’s up to you to decide what I write in the future. At least, that is what Writing 101 wants us to do – give power to the reader! So here is your chance to shine, readers of my blog—however limited you all may be—cast your votes!

 

I Write, I Live, I Write Again

In response to Day 1 Task of Blogging University’s Writing 101: I write because…

Let’s try something. Read the next part slowly.

Imagine that you are standing in a large green meadow. In the distance, a part is covered in a white layer of daisies. It is like a great white blanket; but as you move closer to it, you begin to distinguish separate flowers. You get close and pluck one flower out and as soon as you do that, you can see a white cow with black spots levitate to you from a distance.

The cow speaks in a low pitched voice, one that of a female human being, ‘You have done a grievous crime, you shall be punished.’

You laugh at the absurdity of events but only manage to make the cow angry. Its eyes become red and almost instantly shoot a laser near your feet. You begin running away, trying to save your life, but the cow continues to chase…

What do you think? – That this was the most nonsensical piece of writing you ever read? – Yeah, well that’s true, but I wasn’t asking about that.

You’ve probably been to a meadow before, you might also have seen daisies, but you definitely would have never seen a floating cow shooting laser. And yet… Yet you managed to imagine the whole thing. All of it!

This is why I write.
It helps me see things I have never seen before, travel to places I have never visited, and most of all get to live the life of people I will never be.
It doesn’t stop there. Once I have experienced those things. By reading something I have written, other people can experience that as well. Isn’t that amazing?

Writing is like magic. With mere words you can make people experience, feel, emote, see, touch, smell, hear…

Writing is Magic
Writing is Magic

And let me tell you something. Even though some people claim different, all writings are meant to be read. That is why in the world today, blogs provide a great medium.

Write a story – People will read it.
Write a journal – People will read it.
Write about cows shooting laser – And people will still read it!

Even when people wrote their diaries, they addressed it to be read by someone, sometimes the diary itself. But that is the point of art, isn’t it? It is meant to be shown.

It is only when writing is meant to be read does the true emotions start flowing.

Just Words
Just Words

And to me, writing is not just about giving. It is about receiving as well.

Receive praise, receive experiences, receive criticism, receive knowledge, receive as much as you can. That way the next time you write, you would only be able to give back that much more.

Writing is such an important part of my life that to describe why I write just leaves me short of words. And yet, I feel I don’t have the right words to describe it at all.

Every one has one life to live. Through writing, I  manage to live several in that one.” – Me

I hope writing inspires in you as much as it inspires in me. Until next time, from one writer to another, WRITE ON!

 

Noise – The Voice Within

Inspired from daily post’s Daily Prompts: A Source of Anxiety

It started when I was 16. I thought I heard someone talk to me. I kept hearing this voice, a slightly deeper, more mature version of my own voice. It told me what not to do.

‘Did you here that?’ I kept asking everyone hoping against all odds that I was not turning into a lunatic. And every time the reply was the same ‘Hear what?’

Finally, I realized that it was only I who could hear this voice.

Naturally, I believed that it was my sub-conscious mind talking to me, so I listened to it.

‘Don’t go to the party, you would be made fun of,’ it suggested. I didn’t go.

‘Don’t eat that food, people will call you fat,’ it said. I listened and didn’t eat.

‘Don’t try for the sports team, you won’t be able to make it,’ it told me. I agreed and didn’t try.

It kept telling me not to take the decisions I wanted to and I listened to it, followed it because I believed that it was guiding me down the correct path.

Slowly and gradually, I got accustomed to the voice. So used to it, that I could not take any decision without listening to what it had to say. It ordered me around and I followed without a second thought.

It told me to go to college and get a degree which I did not want because it would help get a job, so I did. It told me not join the debate team since it would distract me from my studies, so I didn’t. It told me that a minor in English would make no sense, I should minor in something else and that is what I did.

It told me to not play video games when I wanted to, it told me not go on a trip with my friends, it told and told me and I kept following what it said until one day I realized what was happening.

It was not the voice of my sub-conscious that was guiding me; it was the voice of what society wants me to be, what the society has deemed to be correct for an individual. The voice of the society had manifested itself as my sub-conscious, drowned my inner voice and was stopping me from doing anything apart from the things in the path it had chosen for me.

It was stopping me from living my life the way I wanted it to be.

And it was then that I realized that I have to stop listening to that voice but how could I? I had gotten accustomed to it; I was completely dependent on it. One time I did stop listening and realized that I was lost without it, but it had to be done, somehow.

So now, I have decided to take things slow . Try breaking the shackles one at a time.

‘You should not be writing this,’ it said and as you can see, this time I did.