Michael Jackson the Pop God

He might have died a sudden death, but Jackson leaves us with a music legacy for the ages.

As Michael Jackson made the unfortunate transition from pop-music icon to tabloid staple, one of the most common lines of attack was on his ever-changing appearance, the way his skin dramatically lightened in tone, and his face altered in structure to other accusations of a child molester etc . What's most tragic about Jackson's death, aside from the fact that it comes as he was mounting a comeback to include a sold-out 50-show residence at London's O2 Arena, is that what people will remember about him is his changing face. What they should remember: the way he changed the face of pop music.

I am deeply saddened and shocked by the death of a brother, a son, a daddy.......I am seriously still trying to wrap my brain around the fact that he is gone...he always seemed so much larger than life. I literally grew up watching him on tv and in videos and movies and most of all enjoying his music. The onslaught of so many emotions when I heard the news of his passing is beyond words....

I am still in utter shock hours later. There was an Elvis before we were born and then there was MJ - the most memorable voice in music history.

Let this serve as a reminder is a gift every second you can try to enjoy it as tomorrow is not promised to anyone.

RIP......nobody knows the truth about this man...he may have been wrongfully accused. Nobody lives a perfect life. To his family, I am sorry for your loss. He had great talent!

If there is music in Heaven they will be having the largest biggest bestest concert today to celebrate whacko jacko’s return home



How do you feel about your birthday? Dread for aging? Happy for partying? Sad for lack of love and friends, who are all dispersed? Nostalgic, because you are older and wiser? Moody and fretful because you wish not everyone would fuss about you so? Bursting with enthusiasm for the love that is showered on you so unconditionally?

Birthdays usually come with many mixed emotions. And depending if you are in your teens or 20’s, 30’s or 60’s the moods it manifests itself with also varies. Sure it is about a birthday cake, and hugs and love, and family and friends, its also about reflections and introspection's, about taking a pause and mulling about ‘Why was I born”

Birthdays come once a year, knocking on your door and even if you opt not to open it, they somehow make it in!!! Sometimes the day is unusual, sometimes it is a dreaded knock especially when you leave behind the 20's!? For me, I would rather hear the knock than no knock at all!!!!!

In life, I have had many chapters I dream of -some I failed at, some I accomplished, some I'm still trying to reach. I've stumbled along the way, I've leaned on family and friends, I've used my instincts and gut feelings, been spontaneous, took my chances. But never can I regret any part of my living years.

My mistakes have made me stronger, my accomplishments have given me joy and laughter, my pain has taught me lessons, my heart has grown humble.

On my birthday, I reflected on my past, also saw some reflections of my future. I was part somber and part bursting with life. I was amidst family and friends. And faced two reality checks: the First- the rains have always brought on the blues for me on my birth date, and this birthday it didn't rain a drop for the first time - definite reason to worry about climate changes. the Second- the accident shook me bad but also made me glad that I was alive and breathing and living well. Made me count my blessings and knock on wood for the love of so many who keep me blanketed against disruptions

Who knows how the next birthday will be...I do not make advance plans, I do not like advance wishes, I do not wish to be gifted but would love a hug and blessings anytime, as much as at times the phone beep and non stop ringing may create a frown of irritation on my forehead, my God, I'd miss it sorely if that did not happen on my birthday:)

Happy Birthday to all of you sometime this year (except for the leap year B-days)....May you find joy in your special day and peace the following days.


The Shams of India

Chatting with a friend started me thinking about the myriad, highly diverting kinds of chicanery I’ve seen over the years in our beloved India:) This turned out to be such a rich topic...

Shamming for sympathy, including:

The supposedly blind guy at Java City with a white cane and dark glasses that weren’t dark enough to prevent you from noticing up close that he was always looking around and focusing on different sights. His perpetual grin didn’t help either.

The desperately sad-looking woman who came to clean the apartment block daily who remained seven months pregnant, and near tears, from mid-2005 well upto now. Beyond the boundary walls of the apartment block on her way in or out of the building when I hand her a packet of cookies or pastries her smile always becomes radiant.

The old woman who used to beg in front of Mac’s on Linking Road every day, bent over double and shaking even in this summer heat, made people reach out with food in concern for her old bones. Except on the two or three occasions when I saw her arrive for “work,” walking upright and not shaking at all.

Heartfelt hogwash, featuring:

A young woman with her family who used to stop people in the street explaining that they were villagers from Kolar who came to Bombay for medical help, and the same day they arrived they got their baggage stolen and now needed money for train fare home – a plausible story convincingly delivered, except that she told it to me on three or four different occasions over a two-year period.

Door-to-door hypocrites

Here’s a fun fact: quite a few people have knocked on my door claiming that I was obligated to comply with their wishes, which usually meant giving them money for one thing or another, and so far not a single one of them has been telling the truth. None. Zero. Liars all.

My favorites include:

The haughtily aggressive bill collector who insisted that I had to pay the previous tenant’s outstanding phone line bill to continue usage.

The “Energy inspector” (with no uniform or ID) who came by right after I moved into a new place and insisted on coming inside to check the papers for a dekho at the electricity meter. I was naive at the time that I actually let him in and showed him the 3 phase meter which he was not interested in , was busy gapin around the apartment and realized that it was essentially a single room with nothing in it worth taking away, let alone stealing.

And the impressively glib young man wearing a yellow jumpsuit and goggles hanging in the front and carrying a complex-looking “gas sensor” (I now think it was a fake empty box) who tried really hard to convince us that we were legally obliged to pay him 200 bucks to use his super-high-tech gizmo to verify that our gas stove wasn’t leaking. We decided to live dangerously.

Inexplicable absurdities

Shopping in one of those massive malls, I found myself in a watch store . As I was making my way through the crowd in the watch department, someone tapped me very firmly and rapidly several times on the shoulder from behind. I turned around and saw a skinny, well-dressed girl with glasses just completing the action of bending over a display case and assuming a glaringly affected look of poring over the watches as though making a carefully considered choice. She was even rubbing his chin as if thoughtfully!.

I have no idea what that was about. A distraction as a setup for a pickpocket? One of those asinine “hidden camera” TV shows? Or perhaps a wager between 2 people to have a laugh at the expense of a stranger