Tag Archives: Men

No, she said.

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Demure, quiet, she kept to herself as she walked down the road of life.

Wary, alert, carefully she kept her distance from people.

She hurried if she felt people approaching.

She hastened her steps when men asked her questions, quickening her pace, mouthing the same word over and over again, “No.”

She walked on too fast and too long, alone, the voices in her head keeping her company.

She stopped for breath, the voices ebbing, feeling lonely, struggling to breathe easy.

She wondered why she didn’t hesitate before saying, “No”, why she thought later but answered before.

She questioned herself for the first time. All the men she’d said “No” reappeared beside her, imploringly staring at her, waiting for her to say something. They demanded answers to the question she was asking her own self.

“No,” she said. Her mind kept repeating “No” until her legs took her far away. The voices came back stronger than ever.

“Don’t let men touch you.”

“Never talk to strangers.”

“Men cannot be trusted.”

“He won’t want to marry you.”

“Don’t heed to your body.”

“He doesn’t care.”

“..not..”

“Never..”

“Don’t..”

“..no..”

That is why she said, “No.” Because that is all she’d been taught!

Graciously Yours!

 

Some Salsa Spice!

One of my fascinations has always been ballroom dancing! Though not strictly ballroom, salsa is what my feet dabble in these days.

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Salsa, believe me, teaches you life lessons! And so much about interpersonal relationships. No, no! Don’t laugh. I’m serious. Read on.

 1. Twirl the girl!

So salsa, like most other ballroom dances, requires the men to take lead. So, my dance partner, gets to take me forward, backward, left, right, all at his own will. Boot up, men! You get the girl and also get to make her dance and spin at your own will. Does your girlfriend or girl friend allow you that otherwise? 😉

Also, you find it’s not so easy taking command of the ship, don’t you? So value those who do. 🙂 Irrespective of their genes.

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2. Actions speak louder than words!

Now that you get to twirl and spin the girl at your own free will, how do you tell her what your will is? You can’t tell her, ‘shush, left now’, ‘no, no, anti-clockwise twirl’, ‘go, right, right, not left’ in the middle of the song. Who’ll count the beats, feel the tune and dance freely then?

So what do you do? You gently direct her, lead her with that hand of yours on her shoulder, and not say aloud! It requires practice, patience and response. Also gives you a life lesson!

3. You make mistakes and you accept them!

You will miss counts, step on your partner’s feet (sometimes on your own feet too!), become clumsy after doing very graceful turns – all of that’ll happen, whether you’re in the first beginner’s class or almost completing your advanced classes. But with the music still playing, what do you do after committing a mistake? Accept it, apologise and move on! Improvise.

4. Helps avoid the mirroring psychology.

Wikipedia says,  Mirroring is the behaviour in which one person subconsciously imitates the gesture, speech pattern, or attitude of another. Mirroring often occurs in social situations, particularly in the company of close friends or family.”

Note, mirroring happens subconsciously. You don’t realize when it’s taken over and you are slowly blending into the crowd and losing your uniqueness.

But when you’re dancing with your partner and you start mirroring them, i.e. you start looking too graceful as a man, or too macho as a woman, you consciously start tearing yourself from mirroring. You start holding out your own self, accepting yourself as you are and hopefully even loving it.

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5. Feminism, much?!

Yes, salsa requires the men to lead and women to follow. Isn’t that what the whole world is screaming about? Or at least half of it. But. Everything in life isn’t about feminism. Sometimes it’s okay to let the men lead not because they’re men, but because the dance requires it and women are inherently more graceful at spinning and twirling than men are. It’s okay to let go and trust your partner. And even if he does fail you, help him get up and succeed together!

Also, I am not a feminist. More, a humanist.

Graciously Yours!

P.S. : Keep dancing!

She over He.

There should never have been a battle in the first place.

Co-existence of men and women has been more like no existence for women. For years, women all over the world were, and are, being treated almost like a liability, fairly acknowledging that there were families who understood the meaning of the equal and opposite sex. If that weren’t the case, we wouldn’t have Enid Blyton, Louisa May Alcott, Amelia Earhart, Rani Lakshmibai and many others. But if I compare, our male compatriots have raced far ahead, since forever. The “STRONGER” RACE, they are after all. Oh yes, I say race because this is a bigger divide than any religion, caste, creed or colour.

He hits her. She accepts it. Either because she cannot leave her family in a lurch. Or she cannot leave him and go out in the world for fear of a worse fate awaiting her.

He expects her to take care of him and his family. She does. He never thanks her. Because he thinks it’s her duty to serve him. She wasn’t born to live for you.

He is waiting in line for a job. She is better. He gets the job. Why? Just like that.

He works hard. She works as hard. His pay cheque is heavier.

He looks at her greedily. She walks away thinking she must have done something wrong. Why? Because he says so.

He abuses her. She doesn’t. Not because she can’t, more so because she doesn’t want to fall to his standards.

Yes, he is stronger. But she is the one who lives in constant fear of crossing the wrong path. She is the one who sees her dreams getting quashed. She is the one who thinks sobbing through the night is easier than defying the men in her life. She is the one who has to see her girl child being killed. She is the one who has to bear the wrath of the child she bore. She is the one who has to bear the sting of words glorifying all that she cannot do or rather all that he wouldn’t let her do. She is the one who gets named whether she’s outgoing, introvert, shy, modern, intelligent, bossy, beautiful, or rather because she exists. She lives through it all.

But, he is the one who’s stronger.

And to what delightful use they put their strength! To hurt her, hit her, stop her, abuse her, rape her. And the men who abstain from pouncing on women? They stare. They share. They sympathize. They blame. But what do they do? They ask, what can we do?

In India, women’s empowerment is almost like the new fad, with corporates like Tata Tea doing a better job of portraying it through their advertisements than the descendant of Rajiv and Sonia Gandhi has been able to in the innumerable speeches he has made (the interview with Arnab Goswami being the key highlight of his highs and lows!) or the decade long term of the UPA Government has done. Pardon my naivety! The UPA Government had sanctioned a 1000 crore budget for the safety of women across the country in the year 2012-13. Mark my words. Sanctioned, not disbursed. Because, sadly, none out of the 1.2 billion people in India could come up with a plan good enough to be accorded funds out of the 1000 crore basket.

All day, each day, she strives to make a mark. To be better than she was yesterday. And someday we will coexist. Because he will realize that she would never treat him as badly as he treated her.