Okay, I have been sad. I have been in something what I have heard is called ‘everyday depression’ — type of depression that may not require professional help to get cured. The other one is called ‘clinical depression’. And it hasn’t required professional help indeed. I mean, this is not the first time that I went through it — lot of times in the past too. Short periods. But are present.
But it has required a very special, very special kind of help. It has required music. It has required strangers — their feet (I am a woman foot fetisher!), and kids — their smile, their attraction to me, just general talk — like there is a bunch of kids I have (dared) to befriend! and while I was returning from college I found them and for minutes, I stood with them, we talked, very little. They are fascinated by my iPad so they did something on it. And then we dispersed and I said ‘bye’ to one of them. Moments later I felt nicer! It also requires atleast, a single view of this 2010 flick: Jhootha hi sahi (Alright, even if a liar) (Has english subtitles as well). Today, while walking with heavy feet — a magical voice, from this film started playing in my head: “..Sad? Dance! feeling bad? Dance! ..where’s the music? Inside you Yuvraj. Inside you! Listen to it and Dance!” — and indeed that helped!
It’s a great film on living life. And myriad other subjects.
It has required inner strength to be alright. To be able to smile. To think of good things I have done. To accept my mistakes which might be a cause to this sadness, like today, I was reminded of this thing I had read yesterday,
If you are sad. You are living in past. If you are anxious, in future. And if you are happy, you are in present.
and it struck me, Oh Yes! I was wanting something, that happened in past! So I accepted it. And started to correct it. Making efforts to stay in present — started noticing all things on my way, as I walked. Started “stating them” aloud, so that I don’t wander off back again. Met my little love: a bitch I feed. Cuddled her.
Sometime later, I was starting to be back, you know, back on the track. In between, there was longing that I experienced, there were few tears, but they were dispelled by this track of that same film. Soon, I was experiencing a very glorious site, I saw all great women in my life, in front of me, hugging me, and telling me that all care for me. That they are always watching me! And that they were happy that I made efforts to be happy. All this happened by this track. Again from the same flick.
Alright. All this and few photographs, yeah — whatever your desire, or passion — they all help you. So don’t doing what your hobbies or such are. I got to know about this friend of mine, an artist, who made an art piece when she was depressed and she too felt better.
Lastly my journey by metro is one of the last phases. Now sure, I felt better. But I wasn’t smilling today. I saw this girl — in blue. She was standing by the edge of seat. And had her head down. Sometime later, I noticed a white mascot printed on the sleeve of her shirt: she was also from my college. I was tired, so I closed my eyes, but with tiny lids open sometime later, I also saw that she too probably notice my i-card hanging around the neck. Anyways, she looked at me. I noticed that a few times.
Further on the journey, I noticed she didn’t respond very openly to people. My observations and instinct told me something. Fortunately, she I don’t know how came and stood beside me — defintely, not in any way that you suppose. She looked blankly out from the window into the dark. I too, at the slightest chance given, turned towards that window. And I wished, that my eyes, no, my vision - the power of my eyes, be shared with her — so that she sees what i see, and I looked at various kinds of light, and lot of interesting stuff. Inbetween, probably her parent called her and she, pulled out the earphone plug — and answered, I too took out one from my ear and listened to her voice: so sweett a voice. It had to be. Sometime later, I noticed she had one plug in her ear and other just hanging down her chest.
Okay, inbetween All this — I wished her, I told her silently — please talk to me. I wish I could talk to you. I wish I could just start to talk, we both being from the same college. Just start to.
Right? And then. When she showed no signs of having an interaction and also I couldn’t muster up the strength; and 2 stations left before I would walk out. An idea struck me.
I opened my i-pad, tapped on the icon of my journal app. I saw her looking at it. Goddamn fuck — you won’t believe it — as soon as the app started, this page appeared —
— the page, that I had created to read, when I would be depressed. And now! I tapped on that image. I kept seeing it myself. From the corner of my eye, I saw that she too was watching it. Infact, my artificially intelligent iPad turned the orientation of the image towards her. Ha! It rotated the image towards right, on the side she stood.
I tapped on the ‘edit’ button on the top right, and scrolled down — and started typing — exactly what I wanted to say to her —-
then my station neared! I typed hurriedly; In what I supposed was to be the end I wanted. As train approached to a stop, I typed the word ‘bye’ and saw that she saw it.
I flapped up my pad and walked out towards the station balcony and cool summer air was slowly flowing in my face. When I smiled and turned back towards the train, between the crowds I saw her standing.
When train left, I turned towards the blackish blue sky and said ‘“thank you” for giving me that idea, to no one in particular. “It really helped me. What could I do? I wish I could have talked to her. But I did! thank you so much. And the interesting thing is that I am feeling better myself! By trying to helping her cope, I helped myself. I am feeling better..” smiling
What if she wasn’t what you imagined her to be?
"Well, I was taught to go by my observations and instinct."
As I walked down and sat into a rickshaw, I only wished, no I knew almost certainly — that it would strike her as a blow, that I was talking to her, when I wrote all that! And it would leave her stunned. And iin lil tears. And in wonder. In sheer naked magic, as I say. I wanted her to experience what I have, sometimes; the miracles happening right in front of me, and I having no choice but to be stunned and smilling damn gladly.
Further, this young rickshaw chap seemed to know me; he said he was nephew of the one in whose rickshaw I usually go in the morning. He asked me what time I leave. Wheather I do a job.
Indeed, world is a small place.
Everyone must be happy. No? :)
P.S. Inbetween the journey, I don’t usually do it. Nor let it happen. But in the inertial jerks, her arm touched mine and I didn’t slide mine back. Infact, I stayed there. And let it gently brush. Very gently. A moment maybe.
to all concerned (sic)
I saw your film — jhootha hi sahi, in april 2012. I don’t remember how I came on it. Maybe I was going over filmography of Mr Tyrewala, for some reason. Ok, ok i remember — I was sad then, or maybe a lil scared, and somehow miracle happened — I landed upon that quote by him —
Do what you believe is the best. There is lot of time in this world to realize it was crap.
Sure, I even told him on twitter how that quote was critical in my life. But today I will heighten, or attempt to tell how much critical was it actually. I had just finished giving my 12th boards around that time (quite fully knowing I would fail) — within a week on something like 9th april — Jhootha hi sahi was watched. On 7th — that quote came to me (through google images while searching his name). On 15th was IIT entrance exam and then onwards were other competition dates. Power of quote was such that, it kind of exponentiated, the idea which led to me getting failed in the 12th boards, you know? I dumped my anyways derelict books (which forms an irony: since they were never opened in the first place. Ha!) and it somehow lifted me into air, I bending down slightly, only to press the play button of this film — When I watched it, I was hit by spears - blood oozed out, but no pain. None. I remember gladly smilling. I want to ponder why.
But as was to happen — I got crazy, and licked all through internet to find these men — Pakhi and Abbas Tyrewala. I found one address and even wrote a letter on it — you would have received it, perhaps. Ok, ok, I was sad then. But I was recovering. You made me smile. You goddamn did that.
That was that.
Few days back from today — while going over rajat kapoor’s twitter profile, I came upon a girl who sent a tweet to him as —
"@niketashri: After a Long Time I m watching #Dasvidaniya its always gives me strength whenever i feel low ! Gr8 work @pathakvinay @mrrajatkapoor Love U!"
Fine. Good! Yeah dasvidaniya was a fab film. I cried tremendously while watching it. Ok now I am beginning to know why I cried. I most obviously didn’t want to die. I would sell every penny but not wanna die. (funny thing is I am a student now. And the kind of student I am — Leave alone every penny I have much more than that to give! Ha!)
Ok. And then, 2 days after reading this tweet — amidst free mind, name of your film struck — along with, that it too was based on the same lines of depression and recovering.
Oh My! Slowly, and slowly, random scenes from the film — as they started appearing in my mind — I went into fits of shocks, but in installments. Tugging of stomach. Mental ecstacy or fear, I don’t know. I wrote on twitter before watching the film again —
Not all fears are bad, or degressive. Some fears also arise when you realize some great thing is going to hit you. They are nice ones! :) 6/9/14
The one sequence which stood above all and which brought most tugging in stomach and mind was, when mishka and sidhaarth had a great evening and he was leaving her at her house — she asks him, more as an answer than a question “..सच बताना..तुम उड़ सकते हो ना।?”
I forgot why. But this line holds a great significance. Something like this has happened. I have often held up that line. Smiles
I was feeding and cuddling dogs in my college. A girl’s voice was heard calling me on my back — I turned to look..
She said she was so glad to see someone, anyone being so kind to stray dogs. And I thought, ‘O Dear! How could I ever tell you if they are stray or not! They are the love of my life.’
She also said, she was watching me for some time — since the time, that I had been feeding them, which was about 15minutes before. And how she had told her mom, with whom she was talking on phone, about me! I was surprised, I was being voyeured.
She said something more about — how much I would be actually loving dogs to sit and cuddle them, and how nice it was to. And that god should bless me. I thanked her and she walked.
She made my day.
And so many others have come out of the blue and were here for a single moment, some only as a glance, some others as a smile! — but the duration doesn’t and can’t matter. Ever.
Watching it again
The camera as it flew over that bridge and the track which played at that point and few moments before and after it — sheer tears of that struggle. And that longing. Bursted out. I have never been more glad of sadness.
Reaching that scene wherein Mr Abraham after talking to 1st caller volumes up the T.V. and that shark thing comes — Yay! Yay! Yay! This time! I realized the subtle secret you had put in there! Ooohhh! :)) Fuck! Even the light that fell on books for an instant also had something. Oh my god! If I start listing every sublety I might lose my head! (noticing more and more!) — the one where junior bachchan saves himself by counter arguement. So funny. hehehehe
I am now perhaps approaching a nice, nicer, nicest thing. I am on that sequence wherein John gets shocked and anxious when he realizes his number printed on the Dost-India pamphlet. I am so much like his character — very nervous and stutter around people; and stunned hen encountering beauty in any form. (In fact I am shocked at my similarity with Sidhaarth.) Now the realization is: that I perhaps embody the characters of Mishka and john, both inside me!
At this point also, it might be important to mention — that, since coming on twitter, miraculously I have got to know so many beautiful people who at some point were depressed, did self-harm, have ED, and other things — but they are so brave! All of them. They don’t leave the bloody rope! (and I tinily try to help them sometimes keep it holding)And I really feel proud to be living among them. I can’t imagine myself without them.
The point wherein, during their first dinner, ajay (uday’s first boyfriend atleast in the flick) accuses sid to be held-reponsible if someone suicides after calling the helpline — just then, Aliya intejects..remember? > I think that’s the finest thing one could do using medium of cinema. The timing of her interjection, the very essence of how and what she speaks! — I think this is how I always envisioned films to be. To oppose the evil, ok, an innocent evil, RIGHT IN THE EYE. And guess what? a day back *(when I had no idea i was going to watch this film again), I wrote —
To not try and fail. Or to try and fail. Pick 1. Do you have any idea how exciting that journey — ‘to try and fail’ is!? And maybe we pass. 5/9
I also remember. particularly, around 2012 — I wrote on so many pages of my diary — I abused. I cursed the education system; I suggested the alternatives. I wrote in anger. I wrote in tears. I wrote in glory, (that I later realized).
I watched Naseeruddin Shah sir’s work. I wrote a letter to him. His reply, though was critical in taking the bad away from me for a long time. Around this time, I got introduced to Mr Anurag Kashyap’s work (through shah ji’s work), Sudhir Mishra ji’s and it helped me for months.
And then mishka’s foremost call comes. Tears start forming in my eyes as she says what she does. Because. Because.
About 20 days back, I was in the same condition. Precisely. I was editing my photographs and crying while doing them — every second wanting to bang my head to the wall beside which I sat. Then this girl, I didn’t knew her personally, but I liked her photography and she did mine. She casually commented on one of my photographs on instagram. Please read the comments section on that link.
Moments later, she privately sent me a photo taken by her. I vividly remember it was of waves and a sandy beach with lots of sea gulls on it. She had filtered the photo black and white. I was intrigued by it. Below it, she typed a caption: “how many sea gulls can you see?”
But I neglected it and loved the beauty of the waves and the sea behind them and the white gulls. And imagined myself to be there — it was so peaceful near the gulls, on the sand; also she was sitting some distance away. Finally, after a minute, I counted gulls and told her my answer. She said it was correct. Surprisingly, out of my tears then, came a smile.
'Thank you' I typed.
She asked me my name. And the story behind it. She was fascinated by it! I tried to tell her — how much she had helped me! but she vanished! — suddenly she deleted that photo of sea gulls and our conversation had-to-end! But the next moment, I stood up from my chair and wiped my tears in smile. Minutes later, in realization I noted: she was an angel, who only came for something probably too sacred, and went back.
And coming back to the present day (4/9). I made an art to her —
I sent her this piece. She didn’t comment on it. But I was notified that she had seen the photo!
And while, sid is holding the phone being with mishka on their first talk, I remember once writting —
Once a day, even if as a suitable fake; love me. Fake it
i don’t care, but do it. And I will let out wonders.
And when mishka puts down the phone after apologising to sid for keeping him on hold while she had slept. And he replies to the phone —
"Good morning to you too…"
I am reminded of how much being humble and empathetic, concern towards all I have learned through being in depression myself. One positive effect of this has been — that I have started feeling like a God — so whenever I care for someone, and he/she is not in a good state, or seem bad — I ask, if I posess any power, or if I have done anything right, then those rewards must be used to bring that person into a nicer state, at any cost, of whatsoever consequence to me.
Often I feel I can’t be rude to anyone — I can’t not smile. I go by metro and everyone looks, or stares at me because of my hairstyle and attire
Somedays back I was offended by how some co-passengers stared. I looked at them with angry eyes, mouthed cuss words or contempt or exhibited bitter indifference.
But not now. Now I smile. And I think, I merely think, that I am having a positive effect on them. :) Yesterday, I was listening to the bloody brilliant Massachsetts Avenue - I mean, I fear the most to even attempt to explain how much this song means to me. And again, how MIRACULOUSLY — It is similar to my own LIFE.
Ok. So i was listening to this song in metro and tapping my feet and face — this man, standing so close to me because of crowd, covertly noticed me a few times, and then, minutes later, took out his own earphones!
Anyways, on to the next time that mishka calls to apologize to that dost-india volunteer to whom she hadn’t talked and had hung the call only in the morning — after that, how and what you spoke, was pitch-perfect in how it actually is.
When I watched it in ‘12 — and Sid tells her, “..not just pain, but everything »» laughter. friends. joy. brithdays. christmas..you will not be able to feel anything, not be able to see anything, like: Lights Off.”
And she replies, “..Ohk. That’s scary.” I remember, when she said that, I tried to imagine how it would be and said to myself, yup he’s probably right.
Now, on my 2014 viewing, I feel he’s right.
And I have a secret: I have lied to so many people. So many people. I have cited examples of things that are ofcourse possible but are not true. Only because I guessed spontaneously, that maybe some change could occur, something better could come of out of someone, at some point.
You know I didn’t think I should mention this point, but here it is. When mishka comes first time at ‘Kaagaz ke phool’ — it’s very interesting because either of characters don’t know about the ‘threads’ knotting them but the viewer starts to know it! Now the thing is: I read somewhere that Mr Hitchcock also used to do the same: that is, he used to create situations where-in the audience gets to know more than the characters, and this, when followed ahead, leads to increased tension in viewers. So! — even here, it’s a start to that, but, the background score that runs when she asks about work by ‘cãrvaka’ and he loses his balance — that score is so much similar to hitchcock’s flicks! I mean, I was watching it on iPad via earphones — and suddenly I became so scared because of that tone playing! 😿💀
When amit pseudo-candidly asks her to leave name and address with them so that they could notify her when any new books become available; then — raghu sir looks up in disbelief when she says her name, then she ‘suspiciously’ asks “..why?..” It has happened with me. Yes! It really feels you were surveilling on my ‘future self’ ha! because that same thing happened to me 2 days before (5/9/14) — 2 girls, I hadn’t ever met before sat in front of me while I tried to feed those. This feeding is quite after that other one. And one of these girls gets up and approaches me offering to help me feed them. I accepted it. (Secretly. Or Spontaneously. Or non spontaneously glad.) And then when we had finished feeding all the dogs; and I was finishing cuddling the last one, towards the twilight — we started talking, and did for an hour! (I couldn’t believe reality, even then! I couldn’t believe how kind they were to talk to me. I also felt pride that I was good enough to not scare them or make them feel discomforted, because they seemed really comfortable with me. At one point in the conversation, she gladly smillingly asked —
"sorry…but I didn’t even ask your name..what is your name"
I was looking down, and slightly looking up in a low tone, ‘yuvraj’ I said.
Just after that I put down my head again, and she said, ‘anmol’ — In total shock I looked up at her — ‘What?!’
she said, “[anmol], my name.”
'Oh my! My previous name was 'anmol' too!! Oh God! And you said it so quickly after I said 'yuvraj' that I thought you knew me from years back!!
I changed my name from 'anmol' to 'yuvraj' 6 years back. So it was shocking ….. because I thought you were calling me by my….'
I laughed a nervous but strangely glad laugh.
"Oh my fucking GOD!!! She laughed very openly and in surprise — EPIC. THAT IS EPIC. Also, when you first said your name, I thought it was ‘shivraj’ — only at the second time, I got it was ‘yuvraj’ “
And I could do nothing but bow again in deep smile, of being violated.
I should end this writting here. I can’t even believe if this is reality anymore. :)
Anyways, I am writting all this while watching the film. and as I went back to the film this time, I had in front of me —
Then there is dance, pam pam para para.
Again, I don’t know how come but since so many years, bathroom and latched-door dancing have saved me. Hour and hours to speakers, or earphones, I have sweated violently dancing. Don’t know a better part of my life.
And you don’t realize, do you? — when that song, ‘cry cry’ played in the film, and at the time when I played it on loop after downloading it — I told myself, and to my younger brother — ‘dude, aren’t the lyrics make a simple fucking sense! why do I have to worry? Why do I have to? Ever?.. do you get it??’
I don’t know if I was depressed that time or not. But suddenly, and I don’t know any other thing but this song’s lyrics — which comforted me into it’s soft blanket as INSTANTLY! Matlab, life seemed like a cakewalk. I remember asking myself — “yaar, pakaa itni simple hi hai…!”
Maybe I would have smiled then. Surely I am doing now! (for obvious reasons.) And especially when the line comes “किसने देखा कल….तो इस पल की किमत..जोड़ लो तुम…” - Every single time, and I played this line again and again, in ‘12 — each time, instantly, I was more and more sure I was doing right. More and more contended. Fears boiling away!
The one where Sidhaarth spills away hoardes of coin secretly into the wish-making pond, I have asked for such wishes too, secretly, and hundred of times.
And I was realizing — how many times, I have twisted reality, by intentionally going near girls — in an attempt, that they ask me, anything, talk, or look..
And in retrospect, I see they have responded, in a positive way! I don’t know anymore if that is wrong or right of me to do. But I won’t stop.
Towards somewhat the end, mishka tells kabir while they are driving in the car — “..From now on, I will neither make, nor ask for any one to sacrifice for me”
In 2012, when I heard this dialogue, I played it again. And this felt like the most ideal thing and also difficult to achieve; I had then recently read Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead (and here’s a fun fact — I think I also one of Rand’s work on your bookshelf! Ha! Don’t ask me how.) — so reading that novel, it seemed great to be able to do that. I think I have reached that stage of no sacrifices. Pretty easy it was.
Also, now that I am recovered, atleast for now; I landed up on a beautiful thing regarding events and influences in our life. Here —
"Your personality is a Fibonacci spiral of events and influences, referencing and circling each other as your life unfurls. Divide any significant moment in your life by the one preceding it, and a beautiful pattern will emerge."
And I so much loved this revelation because my mind instantly connected it to the greatest moments I had on that very day! And so I thought, and I replied to Esther, the writer of these, 2 days later —
I was thinking — since this is true. Therefore, we could tune ourselves in such a manner that the present moment is a fine one, and therefore, the next one will be better, or on the same frequency! no?
And she pinged back —
"I think that’s a beautiful way to live, yes!"
I am 20 something, and till now if I try to remember — I have been fortunate enough to have so many angels, even material angels — unexplainable people, and events, and situations, which either saved me from going down; or made me have a great smile on my face. Your work was one of the bigger, maybe biggest ones because of so many aspects, and moments which went straight through my heart and mind.
I can’t say enough how good it is — the background music, the direction, editing..I am awed by them. Every dialogue, every scene, art direction, performances — I was getting many of their subtle points this time; that scary poster of a child beside semi-conscious ‘ankur’ or flowers where mishka was there..
As most things I can’t understand, leave alone tell, why, HOW could this film not work in theatres? Are the people fools? Sure they are are not depressed, which I doubt in some senses. But don’t they see truth? don’t they see it in love? in music? I don’t get it.
P.S. Little reluctant to say this. Ok I don’t fear. You are anyways way too great. When I searched and read every article regarding this film, after watching it in ‘12 — I came upon it’s box office collections; a flop. I was shit scared that you guys might stop getting funding for your future films. But I so desperately wished to hold that writer’s hand and tell her — ‘you don’t know what a monster you have released! You have no idea!’ I definitely had tears.
P.S. 1: I saw rand’s work on a bookshelf where you guys shot after-making discussion — wherein you, and Mr tyrewala, John, raghu sir, and Kruttika di sat and talked about the experience of making it. There, in the room, was a bookshelf on which lay…Shit. Secret not a secret.
P.S 2: I was smart enough to take a cue even then. I read carvaka after that. An obscure text. Then I purchased Ghalib’s english translation — which I forgot all about. Until today, while watching the film! Isn’t that so ironical? I had ghalib and I was fighting! ha.
Thank you. To everybody. except.
For people, who may have persevered somehow or read this thing, or are only reading this line — the film I wrote about is Jhootha hi Sahi (2010) hindi flick. If in a line I have to say it: You will fucking love it. Don’t miss it. Fortunately, it is also available english subtitles for free.
Single link for both languages. Good video quality.