Disclaimer: This is a rant. You have been cautioned.
Despite all the work I’ve been doing to keep my head down, there have been crystal clear moments, when I have been so thoroughly annoyed at situations, people, and then, some more. I don’t know what tipped the cauldron, but I think that Ae Dil Hai Mushkil has to bear tiny responsibility. Of course, we’ll come to the people, too. But that’s not where it starts, obviously. It stems from something lying in the past that causes the butterfly effect, if you will. That’s how it always crumbles.
I wanted to write an open letter to the social-media-shy Ranbir Kapoor. Of course, it would not have served the purpose, so I didn’t bother. But no matter how much you rationalise his choice of characters across his filmography, there is no denying that he’s played shades of his latest ADHM character in the past. More than once. Not that anything is wrong with it, of course. One is free to make poor decisions and we must allow people that. But there should come a point in time when a ‘serious’ actor must stop and reconsider what he’s doing. In fact, this is an assessment every individual must make every five years, but let’s not retro-fit this piece of reflection to everyone. To be fair, this is a chide to all those people involved in propounding the theory – through RK’s films – that only a broken heart can result in artistic genius. That’s just bullshit. There’s no other way to say it. By selling this asinine theory not only are they coming across as shallow storytellers, but also insulting people who spend hours honing their craft. Jordan doesn’t need to stalk a Delhi girl to become a great singer. Nor does Ayan need to undergo a painful heartbreak to sound authentic. Jordan/Ayan are good singers or they’re not, or they’re characters who are moderately good but willing to learn, or they’re geniuses but unwilling to work. It’s that simple. Ranbir Kapoor being an “actor” himself must know this. Yes, pain does cause one to express in ways unknown, but that’s not a barometer for artistic genius. And let me not even get started on Alizeh’s character. For all the well-meaning people who have defended her saying that she kept saying ‘No’ to a person who didn’t understand the meaning of ‘No’, I ask you to sit down. She was a girl who kissed a stranger, took off to a different country when she hardly even knew him so she could “get over” a break-up, slept in the same bed as him because they had budget issues, and shared a warm friendship with him, but didn’t give him or herself space to work out complex feelings such as abandonment issues (on her part) and unrequited love (on his part). At the risk of stating the obvious, love is convoluted and so are humans. I don’t know how she expected him to gallivant with her all across the globe in such close proximity both physically and emotionally, and yet take the blame for not getting over her. I do realize that I am giving Karan Johar’s characters more credit than what they’re worth, but let’s not use them as a reference point for any social discussions. They don’t reflect reality in any way, so they cannot be used to discuss and debate multifaceted social issues.
Which brings me to writing characters – how are people finishing NaNoWriMo in two days? This is just beyond me. You do realize this is a worldwide movement to write no less than 50,000 words in 30 days, right? How do you write 50,000 words in 2 days and flaunt your achievement online? It makes me take you less seriously than Donald Drumpf. I understand that writers plan their novels, create outlines, and probably stay at home for November. But if you could write the first draft of a novel in 2 days, just do it whenever you want. Why are you even participating in NaNoWriMo? I don’t need to join a group, pledge to stick along the full length of 30 days, when the next person is going to ring the bell on Day 2 and say they’re done. Sure, that’s wonderful and I am quite pleasantly shocked. But then, you’re at the wrong party. Just don’t come.
And don’t call me reactionary if you’re actions are thoughtless and just plain careless. It has been established that no human is the center of the Universe. Galileo was persecuted by the Inquisition for saying so; therefore, my friend, you’re definitely not it. I’ve made it a point to stop calling people on their bullshit. But, it would be great if people took responsibility for their actions before accusing others of a reaction their actions have caused. And this is not just me, I see it all around me. You cannot be an insufferable toe and expect others to keep putting up with you. It’s rather easy to call the cops on someone who has decided to stop being polite, but why don’t you measure what caused them to do so? Have you been a hypocrite, narcissistic and therefore indifferent, passive-aggressive, or even politely demeaning? Does your soft, slithery behavior absolve you of your bad conduct? I’ve got news, it doesn’t.
It was ADHM that just ticked me off, and if it hadn’t been for it, I had thought to blog about how I found myself an interesting fix when I wanted someone to read to me. Or about how someday I want to write a story about a girl who loved a boy but he didn’t love her back (sure, I sound like I’m capitalizing on KJo shit, but I’m not, guess that’s why it pissed me off like this). Or how I didn’t find the Spanish book exciting. Or how I have been so content with food that sometimes it has comforted me beyond words. Or how I’m not sure if I want to live a life where I may not see Boy again. Or about how I finally bought and used a splitter with an old friend and it was just so much fun in sharing something. Or of those times when I have felt like an utter fool for even “wanting”. Or about how exciting and enriching my writing class is. Or about the time when I was talking to an old friend about the psychological wounds we carry that make us who were are; and if you actually sit down and listen to people talk about what brought them pain and how they still carry it within them we might live our lives a little differently.
But I guess, that’s for later.