She just smiled, said that she loved books more than anything, and started telling him excitedly what each of the ones in her lap was about. And Ove realised that he wanted to hear her talking about the things she loved for the rest of his life.
Ove had never been asked how he lived before he met her. But if anyone had asked him, he would have answered that he didn’t.
-Fredrik Backman, A Man Called Ove
Why is it that people, friends, partners fall apart?
Why is that people who ‘knew’ one another inside-out suddenly become strangers?
Is it because we ‘understand’ them so well that we don’t make efforts to understand them anymore?
Why is it that our benefit-of-doubt never seems to favour our loved ones?
Why is it the easiest to pass sweeping judgements about people we care about?
Maybe for once, lets give people a chance.
All I had to do was get out of the apartment for a couple hours so Uncle Marshall could propose to Aunt Lily, go to the bar, meet your Aunt Robin, convince your Aunt Robin to fall in love with me, break up with your Aunt Robin, go on the rebound, go get All I had to do was get out of the apartment for a couple hours so Uncle Marshall could propose to Aunt Lily, go to the bar, meet your Aunt Robin, convince your Aunt Robin to fall in love with me, break up with your Aunt Robin, go on the rebound, go get a rebound tattoo, go get the rebound tattoo removed, meet Stella, convince Stella to fall in love with me, get engaged, get left at the altar, get fired, get beat up by a goat, get a job as a professor, teach the wrong class, date the wrong girl, date the wrong girl again, date the wrong girl a few times, actually, let Uncle Barney fall in love with Aunt Robin, let Aunt Robin fall in love with Uncle Barney, book the wedding band, go to their wedding, make sure their wedding actually happened, leave a little early, be in the right place at the right time, and somehow, summon the guts to do the stupidest, most impossible thing in the world: Walk up to that beautiful girl standing under the yellow umbrella… and start talking.\n\nSee? Easy. a rebound tattoo, go get the rebound tattoo removed, meet Stella, convince Stella to fall in love with me, get engaged, get left at the altar, get fired, get beat up by a goat, get a job as a professor, teach the wrong class, date the wrong girl, date the wrong girl again, date the wrong girl a few times, actually, let Uncle Barney fall in love with Aunt Robin, let Aunt Robin fall in love with Uncle Barney, book the wedding band, go to their wedding, make sure their wedding actually happened, leave a little early, be in the right place at the right time, and somehow, summon the guts to do the stupidest, most impossible thing in the world: Walk up to that beautiful girl standing under the yellow umbrella… and start talking.
Pet names are a persistent remnant of childhood; a reminder that life is not always so serious, so formal, so complicated. They are a reminder; too, that one is a not thing to all people. These are the names by which they are known in their respective families, the names by which they are adored and scolded and missed and loved.
Good names appear on envelopes, on diplomas, in telephone directories, and in all other public places. Good names tend to represent dignified and enlightened qualities. Pet names have no such aspirations. Pet names are never recorded officially, only uttered, and remembered. Unlike good names, pet names are frequently meaningless, deliberately silly, ironic, and even onomatopoetic.
― Jhumpa Lahiri,
Is it possible to experience something again? Can we somehow relive some of our best days? Can we go back to the person we used to be? Where are those once indispensable things now? Where did we lose our best ones? Where are those days of joy and adventure now? Nostalgia, thou heartless bitch!
Flashback a decade back.
Some random day.
4:50 pm: I just snatched the TV remote from my grandfather’s hands. Didn’t really have to snatch it though. He kind of offered me the remote himself. And why not. It had become our daily routine since a time both of us couldn’t remember. I quickly change the channel to Cartoon Network, channel number 23 (I still remember that!). We had cable TV back then.
Swinging my feet, I am giving anxious glances to the clock every 10 seconds waiting for it to strike 5. These used to be longest 10 minutes of my day.
The clock strikes 5. AND THE MOMENT HAS COME!
Sabse behtar banoonga main, jaisa koi aur naa tha………ek safar par nikla hu main, ghoomoonga chaaro disha……..Pokemon, karne hai haasil………..Pokemon, karne hai haasil, Pokemon.
It’s 5:30 now. Another exciting episode has come to an end. Jigglypuff has just put everyone to sleep and Team Rocket firse haar gayi.
For many of my generation Pokemon was not just a cartoon. Dare you ever say that! It was a phenomenon our daily lives revolved around. From discussing the latest episode to predicting the next episode, from playing Pokemon trump cards to flaunting our knowledge of the Pokedex and from collecting Tazos to placing bets on them, we seemed to have no other purpose in life. Everything was Pokemon. I don’t think we get enough credit for sky-rocketing the sales of Cheetos and Uncle Chips. Our Tazo collection was a source of pride for us. Gradually, as technology advanced we starting getting hooked on to our computers. Doing what? Playing Pokemon of course! Red, Gold, Emarald, Ruby and all sorts of colors and gems. I still play them sometimes, just like old times.
As for my family, they would repeatedly ask me just one question- “ Pikachu Raichu kaise banta hai?” Grinning widely at their lack of such basic knowledge I would reply “Viksit( evolve ) hokar.” Hearing this they would laugh uncontrollably every time. 10 years down the line I still don’t understand why they would laugh so much whenever I used the word Viksit. Pokemon evolution still makes much more sense to me than Darwin’s Theory of Evolution ever has.
There is no hiding the fact that we have always wanted to lead a life like Ash Ketchum (or Ash Ketchup as I used to call him back then ). Being able to live those thrilling adventures of catching and battling Pokemon has been one of the biggest childhood dreams.
The dream of millions like me of becoming a Pokemon trainer came true with the release of Pokemon GO. Hence, the worldwide craze. To all those thinking that people who going nuts behind a game are stupid, you are right. It’s the rage, the fever of the realization of a childhood dream. And to those who think people playing the game are kids, you are right again. It gives us the platform to relive our childhood. It brings back those millions of memories our generation has shared. It reminds us of the times when the biggest challenge we faced was to convince the other person that our favorite Pokemon was better than their. And just to let you know, Squirtle is the best. It leads the way in attacks, swag and cuteness.
For me and many of my generation, it won’t be an exaggeration to say that a major chunk of our childhood can be defined by this very beautiful word, POKEMON.
P.S. You say that you love Pokemon, we are friends automatically 😀
Walking down this familiar path,
I catch how much life has changed.
From racing together to school,
To solving those maths sums,
To sharing our daily stories;
What went wrong?
What did I do to be left
Marooned in this black burrow.
What made you take me up the hill;
And then leave me there stranded.
You were my guiding light,
What made you just walk away?
Was it my stupid actions?
Was it my taking you for granted?
Perhaps we may never fathom.
Seasons back little did we imagine,
This perennial spring shaping into
the excruciating autumn of unknowingness.
We talk but no more converse,
We know but do not understand.
The cemented walls separating us
seem too thick for emotions
We have learned to exist singly,
even in each other’s company.
The voids left within us
And all that remain are