Big Brother Is Watching You!

Do you have an elder brother? What is he like? Conservative and dominating or friendly and humble? If you have an elder brother who is conservative and dominating, I feel pity for you as much as I feel pity for myself. If your brother, on the other hand, is friendly and humble, I will congratulate you, for you have a gem of a brother.

In India, as in the other parts of the world I assume, elder brothers are given great importance. Well, they may not be given as much importance as we give to our father and mother, however in the absence of our parents, the elder brothers (or sisters) play the role of one.

Now, from time to time – that is, on special occasions (which, I must submit, are rare in my case) – I like to indulge in a little drinking. Many people find it difficult to spend their time without imbibing a little on the night of 31st December (the night of the nights). A few days prior to 31st December, friends and neighbours start asking what your plans are for the 31st. When a neighbour asked me the same question, I replied to him saying that I was not doing anything much; I would just sit quietly in my room and have a glass or two of wine and have something to eat with it. My neighbour wanted to say something but he was holding back. At last, when he could hold back no longer, he wished his desire to have a drink with me in my room. That was the 31st of December and I wanted to say goodbye to the year in a high spirit and welcome the coming year with even more enthusiasm. I could have denied my neighbour to have a drink with me by giving some excuses, but then I thought what’s the harm in having a company who will only make the environment livelier while I drink? So, I said that he was welcome. He asked me whether I would mind if he brought in a friend of his. I said I would not. He seemed delighted to hear that. He informed me that he would join me in a few minutes.

After a while, he came to my room. Along with him came his friend and (well, yes, one more person) his brother. I looked at them, they looked at me. I was just about to say, “come, feel at home and make yourself comfortable,” but they did it voluntarily and I saved my words. The neighbour had something in his hand that was wrapped in plastic. When I asked him what it was, he placed it on the table and started unwrapping the plastic and said: “See for yourself, homie.” It was a bottle of Whiskey.

I sat on my chair. The neighbour and his friend sat on two chairs near me, while the neighbour’s brother lay down on the sofa (he didn’t join us). I had prepared salad and made omelette to eat while drinking. The neighbour suddenly had an idea and asked us to wait a few seconds till he returned. The sudden idea of the neighbour was a mystery to me. After about five minutes the neighbour returned and with him he brought a few pieces of fried chicken. “Excellent stuff!” he exclaimed. His friend gave a half smile and his brother seemed sad and occupied with some thoughts.

I had my wine with me. The neighbour and his friend drank Whisky (which I found too strong due to its high alcohol content) and chew on the chicken pieces. The neighbour’s brother looked at us all the while and I thought he wanted to join us. “Come, join us,” I said. But he did not come. I did not know what was stopping him from doing so.

I asked the neighbour: “Doesn’t your brother drink?”

“He does or he does not,” said the neighbour, “I can’t say for sure.”

“Oh,” I said, “he is a good guy unlike us.”

“He is or he is not,” said the neighbour, “I can’t say for sure.”

As we were drinking, suddenly, once again, the neighbour got an idea and he excused himself and said he will come back soon. Right after he moved out of my room, the neighbour’s friend locked the room in a hurry and then what had to happen, did happen. The neighbour’s brother jumped from the sofa and sat right in the chair where his brother was. He poured a glass full of Whiskey and offered his thanks to some god, dipped his little finger in the glass of Whiskey, sprinkled a few droplets and, without even mixing water, he emptied the glass at one gulp. “The chicken,” he said and he had one piece, thereafter he had many more. His elder brother never came back and, after a while, after thanking me a thousand times, the neighbour’s brother and his friend went tipsy topsy out of my room.

Copyright © 2017 RAMU DAS

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When You Are In Love

True love is hard to find. Once found, there is nothing like it – it is complete bliss! Love makes the world go round, don’t you know.

To a lover, in the beginning, – yes, I will be talking only about the beginning stage of love, for, you see, gracious reader, I am a beginner myself – no one in the world seems as important as his/her lover. When you find your special one, friends’ friendship does not remain as strong as it were before; brothers, sisters, fathers and mothers, relatives seem, all of sudden, secondary. Lovers’ love becomes the top-notch objective; lovers’ interest comes before anybody else’s.

It may seem strange to others, as it once seemed to me, how lovers often confine their worlds around each other; how upon the slightest utterance of one lover’s name the other brightens up, becomes somewhat restless, blushes. The way one lover takes care of the other, it seems to a lover, no other can do. The loverly love is divine (or so, a lover finds).

Everything to a third person may seem ridiculous, but only a lover knows love’s power. You must fall in love to know this, this peculiarity of lovers; what feelings/thoughts one lover evokes in the other.

Newly in love – my love, I ought to say, is true to the core – I feel elated and excited. I could not have gotten any other person as good as the person I have found. I love her for what she is, and she reciprocates. The woman I am in love with is the woman I am going to marry. I am not married yet, you see, neither is she married (you may verify this bit of information if you like, ha-ha!), so I believe we were destined to know each other; now I have come too far and I cannot think of not marrying her, and, of course, I cannot allow my mind, not even remotely, to think she would not be mine. Love is ours, and our solid emotional investment must bear fruit (veterans, don’t discourage me by some stupid funny quotes like this one: “A man in love is incomplete until he has married. Then he’s finished.”). Our relationship is going great. In most of my waking hours I think of her, and, she tells me, she does the same. I feel lucky to be in love with her. She is, in more ways than one, better than me. But we don’t really make any comparisons. Our love is unconditional. Love makes a person humble. We stop being headstrong and learn to compromise wherever necessary. We crack silly jokes and laugh at them too. In short, I am happy with the way things are going; I am happy with my love life. I have learnt to be selfless, and now I am more concerned about her happiness than mine. I know if she is happy I will be happy.

More often than not, lovers are possessive about each other. My roommate often quarrels with his girlfriend (lover). They have a long-distance relationship; he stays in west side of the country and she in the northeast. They call up each other every day and speak for hours and hours. With them every petty issue slowly turns in to a major problem, and, when helpless, my roommate comes to me for advice and suggestions as though I am a love guru or something of that sort. Just the other day he had a long argument with his girlfriend. In the morning, he sent her some messages on WhatsApp and although she saw his messages but he got no reply from her. He saw her online and yet she did not respond to his messages. He was enraged at this. He called her up, her phone was busy; she was talking with someone, but who? At this thought he was further enraged. Every now and then when he comes to me with his complaints I try to console him as much as possible. Earlier, when I was not in love, I used to find this outburst of emotions unreasonable and superfluous. Now that I am in love I know this outburst of emotions is reasonable and genuine.

If you are not in love you would not know what feelings lovers have, why they are possessive about each other, why they act and react the way they do. You would know this and more when you are in love!

I like this song and I dedicate this song to my love, my dear Moon (by the way, Moon is her name), and to all other lovers like me:

Copyright © 2015 RAMU DAS

Knowing

I am a seeker of knowledge,
Wherever it flies I grab
And the more I know;
How little I have known, I realize.

Those who know look so plain,
So simple and humble,
That you won’t believe
They know anything at all.

The knower know what they know
They believe in what they believe,
And till their last breath
They live by their values and principles.

On the other hand, there are some
Who think they know what they do not know
And claim to have mastered
Things which are fantastic, just out of the world!

A foreigner to a vast land
Will from one instance generalize the whole,
But a native knows the true story,
And this knowing makes all the difference.

Copyright © 2015 RAMU DAS