Thursday, July 2, 2009

Back... and burning to go!

This is just to say a big and cheery, "Hello!" even though I'm feeling like the bottom of a bird cage. Let's put it another way - I'm all cruised out.
More travel stories later. But first, I came back to the great news about Section 377. To all my gay friends - let the party begin. Finally , India woke up and discovered the 21st century - at least when it comes to same sex relationships. It's a complex issue. Arnab wanted me to be on his panel tonight. But I was hopelessly jet lagged, had half a litre of coconut oil in my hair, and my mind was still in Paris .... for several reasons.
My 'holiday' ( definitely need another one to recover from this one) was exhilerating on many levels, but I can tell you that the ghastly news about MJ's death nearly ruined what could have been a picture perfect day in Genoa. I loved the Gloved One with all my heart, and when I heard the Motown guy paying his tribute on Larry King Live by stating what the world needs to acknowledge - " A Michael Jackson happens just once," my tears wouldn't stop. What an incredibly sad end for such an incredibly talented individual. Jackson was the second man in my life I'd uttered the words , " I love you," to. The three forbidden bon mots had slipped out spontaneously when I'd met him briefly ( a few pulse-stopping seconds) at a poolside dinner in Mumbai more than a decade ago. He'd whispered back ( on auto pilot, of course) , " I love you, too," and even though I knew it was a conditioned response to a fan, I'd BELIEVED him!!I'd shaken his gloveless hand , glared at the 7 feet gorillas (his minders) forming a protective ring around him, broken through a tight security cordon, and done what I had to do - declared my feelings unabashedly to a complete stranger - a ghost. It's a surrealistic moment I'll always cherish ,for MJ was not of this world. He was an angel. And he's back where he belongs. I'll say it once more with feeling, " I love you, Michael." Ummmm.... in case you want to know the identity of the other man who heard those words from my mouth.... sorry. Let that remain a secret I share just with him.


Jogeshwar said...

A big "Hello!" from me as well, nice to hear form you, if I were ever to meet you it would be pulse stopping moments for me. Just wondering internet is so awesome I can actually express my views to you, otherwise it would've been impossible. I also felt sad and sorry to hear about MJ.

Sidhusaaheb said...

Not too many angels are addicted to prescription drugs, I hope.


Good to know that your vacation went well!


The Panorama said...

Yes, A Michael Jackson happens only once.
Welcome back:)

kala said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kala said...

MJ had given so much that we want to remember only the best of him and wished that he did not die like that.
As for the high court judgment, it is a welcome development. Hope the fundamentalists dont try to scuttle it.
Lines are blurring.

harcharan bains said...



She said my arms burn/
My head spins, my bosom burns, my palms burn/
My heart aches, my lungs burn, my thighs burn/
My cheks burn, my lips burn, my eyes burn/
A furnace in my stomach and my sighs burn///

Burn, burn, burn, burn,/
She said I burn./

Flames leapt from her mouth and clutched/
My feeble raiment, and danced a dance /
Of mad May gusts or of a mystic in trance./

The fire in her embrace curled Round my waist and was hurled
Into my bottomless stomach,
And twoards my bosom and my thighs./
Fire extinguished fire, and all
Was over; and we sank
Down and down into deahtless sleep,
Weak and cold,
Wrapped around by a velvetty hold, of dense and dreary dark.

But the sun shot through the chinks of the door,
Innundated the room and drowned us both,
In light that refuses to leave.
And light is what we can not bear!

കിഷോർ‍:Kishor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gajendra said...

welcome back Shobhaa. Yeah, we'll miss him...MJ was a legend.

other man?? kaun hain? kaun hain? kaun hain? kaun hain ?

Gaurav Agarwal said...


If you uttered those three words to MJ perfunctorily as you met him, I'd do just the same if I ever get to meet you.

I'm a big, big fan of yours, especially of your columns under 'Politically Incorrect' and of your work 'Sisters'. From the core of my heart, I feel -- although I'd never be qualified enough to judge the work of a personality like you -- that your work represents a fusion of your experiences in the west and your bearings in the east... a melodious mingle of the Oriental and the Occidental.

I just hope that I get to meet you sometime. My name is Gaurav Agarwal, I'm 18, and have just secured a seat at The Shri Ram College of Commerce, New Delhi.

It would be my proud privilege if you could visit my blog:
( It just has two posts. I know you must be having a busy schedule, but if you would take the time out of the same, you would make me really happy.

(The fact I could make you read this letter is an achievement in itself for me.)

Anonymous said...

I can not seem to understand this love for a suspected child abuser.

I am just so tired of hearing of him for past few days.

I hope media attention dies soon.

Digerring here..

What's your take on court ruling about recognizing gays in India?

Anonymous said...

i meant

digressing here...

sorry for the typo

pooja raathore said...

welcome SD hope you had a good time , good to have u back . I feel the same about Michael Jackson may his soul rest in peace.

Nandini said...

Yes, we will definitely miss MJ, a lot!!!
I still remember the first time my mother gifted me a cassette( in those days) after my exams, rather than a stuffed toy, or some girly stuff that I could showoff to all my friends.
I wasn't quite impressed with the cover that said 'DANGEROUS' on the tape, but nevertheless played it.
And I've been playing it ever since, thanks to my mother.
But more importantly thanks to his music, DIRTY DIANA made me cry, & it still stirs you up even today.

I'm happy that you're back.

About the gay thing, I'm happy that freedom has found a new meaning in our society, but my views on the subject are still a little conservative.
Although I cannot be entirely right, my conscience says that the family system, & the ethics that bind the society will be hit hard with this verdict.
Right or Wrong, in our country, it has become fashionable & a matter of convenience to go against the obvious.
Everyone is today obsessed with the word 'ATTITUDE', as the single most powerful tool to success. I agree, a right attitude is important, to make it big in life; but who is defining what a right attitude should be?
Aggression is not equivalent to a progressive mind.

Anyways, everyone seems to obey the new law. We Indians have this herd mentality, so anything that doesn't affect your space will be taken for granted.

We will have to live with this.
I believe the verdict was a desperate stamp to prove our loyalty towards the so called modern era.
I do not understand what is so damn modern about it! We shy away from implementing sex education in schools even today, which should be the topmost priority.
We always have this tendency to go tangent in our efforts to improve lives, and look what we've finally concluded!
We Indians are the ultimate nutcases. We are more bothered about pleasing everyone & finding our way through the mess than solve problems head on.


welcome back!
I have been waiting for your post, but now I blessed to have it.
Michael is still in this world, in the minds of us, his music will keep mesmerizing the world at its eternity. He was/is a legend.

anamika said...

1st things 1st..I missed you like anything.Recently i went to a book store and saw your autobiography book with so many pics of yours.It made me miss you more.Waiting for you to reconnect with us again without the pause.

2ndly-I am glad sec 377 being scrapped .The only reason I approve of it is as I believe that every one and any one has the right to live on his /her own terms.Even it may be wrong then let the people judge it themselves.

Amitz said...

Dear Shobhaa,

I happened to see ur profile today(the very blogspot one) and the music-u-like section didn't featured MJ. This is reference to ur affection shown by u in ur blog towards him and considering him as ur 'second man' ;it was a bit surprising !!

curtainz_fire said...

welcome back shobha . i am really excited and be en awaited for your next post of how you discovered ur journey!!!

krish said...


A big hello ........tight hugs to my frnd...truely missed you.......wann hear more abt yr hoildays but later.....hope u are in good health....Truly MJ was an angel ......was fortunate enough to attend the concert in mbai..... and yes at least the couts in our country realise we are in the 21st centuary......forget the netas.......hey did you try the sea link.......and yes finally i love u.....


cmpershad said...

"My 'holiday' ( definitely need another one to recover from this one" - Jet-lag. yes, they say a small peg in the morning refreshes your night's excess drink:)

Maddy said...

other man who heard those words from my mouth....

You just made it curious!!!

Nikki said...

If only this angel had another angel looking after his well being! MJ, RIP.

Balvinder Singh said...

Frankly speaking, we need to have a relook at so many other laws -- in fact the whole of IPC -- that was scripted by Lord Macaulay in 1860 and which we are blindly (and obediently)following.

*Aham* said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
*Aham* said...

yes yes yes yes yes yes !

De! Im legal now. Im legal.

and was waiting for you to return so that i could send you my big cyber hug... so here we go >>>>>Huuuuuuuuuuugggggggsss<<<<<<<<<


Thank god, police can now focus on terrorists and rapists... rather than weird cases where they neeed to run behind 2 adults to their bedrooms.

I read that someone in bangalore isnt really happy with the chaddi's he got.. guess he needs Chadda's- big ones with pockets preferred. He has started pooing about section 377.

The most charming thing i received on my phone was a congratulatory message from Meera Sanyal. She is down, but not out. She is well connected to the friends she made during her campaign. And stands by her word.

I strongly opine that the work has just began now. Now we should work towards societal change and attitudinal change. But the optimist in me never dies. Im sure, things will change. And will change for the better.

love :)


Another Kiran In NYC said...

Ah Michael Jackson....aavjo!

Screw all this Angelic spirit shirit business. The guy could sing and dance and sell his music. He was a Musical, marketing and dance genius... no question about that. For that he must be saluted. But for that only.

The fella was an extremely poor role model and a drug addict all his adult life! As an influential public persona, he was a complete arse with no sense of responsibility to the rest of us who wilynily bought into his marketed image.

I dont care how kind he actually wanted to be, and how whispery his voice was, and how much Deepak Chopra influenced him or not. He broke the law in many proven instances, used his money and influence in selfish and not altruistic ways, and was way out of touch with reality of life that his fans live. That he could even put children in the position that he did by even being accused of improper behavior with them is just despicable. Proven or not, even putting children in that position is horrible.

Frankly I am not buying the lost childhood bit. He was living out his "lost childhood" all the way into his fifties? Thats cause for therapy. The men in white coats should have been running to get him years ago.

I saw the Martin Bashir documentary on MJ on TV yesterday. On this second viewing after years, I was even more appalled by the caricature that MJ was. I dont buy the sinfully edited and hatchet job accusations against the journalist. The words that I saw on TV were coming from MJ's mouth. I saw his mouth move. And it wasnt a voice over either. The lies, disconnect with reality and bad parenting was just horrible.

A musical genius was lost... thats as far as it goes.

Another Kiran In NYC said...

I am glad the court opined that the stupid homosexuality law from Macaulays time needs to be overturned. They need to look at every statute that the Victorian era ever spawned. We need to move with the times.

However I am not sure that folks should celebrate quite yet. Legal appeals against this opinion need to be fought and attitudnal changes made too. Has the law been signed yet or has just a court opinion has been given?

kala said...

We all know what MJ was. We are crying because he died as a sinner and he was a victim of his own sins. Come on, there are crores of sinners out there. But he is a sinner with a difference. The tragedy is that he could have used his genius, his fame like any hollywood star. Role models dont evoke such emotions as a life horribly gone wrong evokes. This is ironical. Emotions dont depend on mathematics and logic especially in this case.

numerounity said...

YUp...u said right that "a michael jackson happens once". It was sad to bid him farewell.

Sameer said...

YAY !! 3 Cheers for India's victory on 377. Shibhaa, there seems to be so much lack of knowledge among common people about homosexuality, that an article by you especially on this occassion would be really worthwhile. I am seriously thinking of moving back to "mazha bhaarat" now that they have legalized my status. :) Think about the brain drain that we had because of this stupid Shobhaa, an article please...

Rahul said...

I only saw one legend in musical industry...that was MJ....

I was not lucky to see beatles happen

I was not lucky to see Elvis Happen

But I surely was lucky to see MJ happen :)

Ravi said...

Hi Shobha,

With IPC section 377 scraped we move one step towards legalizing homosexuality in India. Good to see that our homosexual (brothers and sisters) are no longer seen as criminals similar to murderer, thieves etc.

And now, I can't keep myself from thinking couple of interesting but confusing situations India may fall into. Would like to share one.

Year 2012- Indian Supreme Court Legalize Homosexuality.

Place- My College Hostel (with double or may be triple seated rooms with one bathroom area per floor.)
A student joins and fills the hostel application form and out of two given choices in sexual orientation section (straight/homosexua l)he ticks on second.
Administration is puzzled as to which hostel this gay would fit in.

1st option: They send him to boys hostel and (lets assume) I am(a straight person) asked to share room with that gay student.
needless to say, by now you would already have imagined all possible situations I'd have to go through.
Like you guessed, having aware his sexual orientation I would never feel comfortable sharing a room with him.
And not just me. It would be very difficult for a straight person to share a room with a gay.

Remembering our hostel days, as a friend and a roommate we sometimes shared beds or didn't even care to wear shirts while walking in corridors.
Same behavior can not be kept with gay roomies.

Few other possible options:
2. Build a separate XYZ_Gay hostel and move all gays in there. But that's like giving them freedom to build relationships among themselves. Boys hostelers would come out on streets and demand to merge boys and girls hostels on the same parity of reasoning :) (very unfair ;)...This option is ruled out.

3. Cant keep gays in girls hostel for the reason similar to 1st one.

4. One last option I can think of is build a separate hostel, name it- PQR_Gay_Lesbian Hostel and let a gay share a room with a lesbian. This combination would have the least possibility of having sexual distraction among student. But again corridors and common bathrooms are places where one can attract(or get attracted) towards each other.

confusion continues... ........

Matter becomes more complicated when Bisexuals (if there exists such category) also come into picture.

And now back to square one.....
To me the whole homo-hetro debate boils down to one single question-
Is homosexuality by birth? (In other words- Does God make them the way they are ?)

If the answer to above question is Yes then Homos deserve to live a life with dignity and deserve all the fundamental rights similar to a straight person.
And if the answer is No, that means person acquired his/her behavior from the environment he/she lived in and with deliberate attempts that behavior can be reverted back (from so called unnatural behavior )to a normal behavior.

There are equal number of scientific/social theories for Yes and No answers. So this question remains unanswered till we have solid proofs.
Until then life remains tough for a homosexuals.

I try to get an answer when I look around and wonder whether most gays chose to become fashion designers or the other way round.
I hope first is true.

Please note: By no means I intend to offend homosexuals/ heterosexuals/ bisexuals/ fashion designers. The above writeup is the invention of my good for nothing, idle mind.

Please read my post thoroughly and think before you write something back.

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