Archive for June, 2010

identity by amantsdeminuit

With western trends taking over the world, got nothing against it in particular, I looked out the bus window and the people I saw on the pavement just made me wonder about a few things. Food for thought if nothing else.

Trendy clothes. Fast food. English accents. The unique identity that americans and the british started with are now becoming a sort of point that other countries seem to be clamoring to reach. Those developed countries are the most forward in terms of progress and most definitely have so much to teach developing countries about how to prosper – but looking at the general populus of men and women, in Delhi, in Singapore, in Colombo, all dressed in what’s trendy this season, eating the same kind of convenient food, talking about the same kind of movies, series and music – I feel like, I don’t know, the path to Being A Developed Nation seems to be sucking out bits of the nation’s roots.

I’m no one to judge and there’s no direct answer to the question of how to create a healthy equal balance between a country’s developmental change and its original culture. The growing culture initiated by the west in a way unites all the nations, gives all the countries something in common, adds to the whole ‘global village’ concept and all that jazz. Everyone’s got a burger joint, everyone learns english if they’re gonna join an important firm, everyone’s heard of Prada. And anyway what else can I expect? A Colombo where young people dress in sarees, paavada, sarongs and handloom cloths.. stick to the staple foods of kiribath, rice and maalu sodhi.. where all schools regardless of government or not teach sinhalese and tamil as first lingos, and make sri lankan geography and history compulsory..? A super-culture where sarees and sarongs are cultural pride and not backward compared to Levis and suits? Where the importance of english and western culture as a universal tool of communication are recognized and studied about but not at the expense of compromising eastern culture? Where pure eastern music is appreciated and not considered lame compared to english pop and rock?

Japan is one country I think that’s managed to balance things to some extent. It’s culture is epic and in every way remains intact, blending smoothly with their fast development, creating a sort of neo-Japanese identity. Do young people in Colombo have a unique identity compared to someone in another city? I honestly couldn’t tell the difference between my 15 year old cousin and another 15 year old cousin who was brought up in the UK, except for perhaps a coupla ‘aney’s in her sentences and the fact that she loves rotti. They both speak, dress and act the same, and have everything in common. Maybe a global village is a good thing that way? No differences, everyone’s the same. But who are you then? A dot among millions of dots, all grey dots on a grey wall.

Food for thought if nothing else.

It’s a little scary, when it comes right down to it. I’ve always been all, I can’t wait to move out! Do my own thang. And all that shizzle.

But now it might actually happen in about a year. Architecture, what I’m studying, is seven long years of hell in Sri Lanka normally. So there’s this special program in Ozzie that takes in people who’ve done reasonably well in their first 2 years, and gives them a degree in another 2 years = 4 years in total.

Nothing’s confirmed yet but it should be by the end of the week.. is it very hard? Leaving Sri Lanka? I know there’s lots of bloggers on Kottu out there who have, so is it?

I went to Dubai once upon a time and I hated Sri Lanka when I got back, for a whole week, because developed countries are flawless in comparison. Then I went to a rural part of Kandy and I found monkeys in the backyard of my aunt’s house – WOOT – a touch of spontaneous imperfection that prolly wouldn’t be granted by a country that’s figured it all out.

Things I’ll miss:

1. The MONKEYS. And elephants.
2. The smallness of the place – I never need a map, just a tuk-tuk and helpful pedestrians.
3. The tuk-tuks.. like a chariot to a gladiatah! Except, you know, minus the shiny armor.. and gore inducing battle and stuff.
4. My goday friends. ❤
5. Spicy food! What the hell is food in australia like? Please don’t say burgers.
6. The quirky flaws – cows chilling out on the green patch at a roundabout, almost vertical roads in uphill kandy, bumpy ones that literally kick you off your seat, finding a monkey eating fruit in a tree while strolling down a busy kurunagala road.
7. Different cultures, different languages.
8. Caesar.
9. Chaos like Pettah.

It’s just for a coupla years. So I’ll be back before I know it!
I’ve never lived in another country so I have this cartoony image of me sitting in a class full of suddhas in jeans and Ts and me in my muslim clothes and checkered purple sneakers and funny accent, a bigger freak than I am in Colombo. 😛

All I know about the place right now is that there will be epic amusement parks, snow and kangaroos, which is enough incentive for me.
Also, this trippy song, o yeah. Do ya come from da land down undaah, where the beer does flow and the men chundah!

But what is a chunder and why do they sound jamaican. 😐

Know that bump in the night?

Posted: June 15, 2010 in Uncategorized

I hate them! Stupid bumps.

I’m just finally drifting off peacefully at the end of this long pointless conversation the voices in my head were having about whether or not I should finish my secret stash of nutella this week – when BUMP! something like a limb hitting wood.

Now usually people dismiss such bumps as a stupid cat on the roof or a wind playing with a window pane, but not me, not stupid paranoid me. Animals that walk around on roofs are pretty stealthy, they don’t just bump into things.. the windows are closed and that sounded nothing like a window.. omg what’s that scratching noise. It’s a burglar.. a rapist burglar.. no, an evil spirit trapped on earth and seeking to exact its personal malice on beautiful young females.. omg it’s a clown! or a pedophile! THERE’SAPEDOCLOWNONMYROOF.

I switch the lights on by now and I sit up in bed a bit, listening. Nothing. Well, obviously, now that I put the stupid lights on you just go all silent like the well timed evil spirit/pedo you are. So I ask Caesar what he thinks, but he just gives me this self righteous wiggle and says he has to pee.

self righteous wiggle.

I open the door for him and I go to the bathroom. A minute later I hear another muffled BUMP, this time like a door hitting its frame. Nail filer in hand (hey it’s pretty sharp, could poke an eye out if I aimed right) I jump out into my room ready to face my attacker. But really just ready to roll the chair with wheels at him and run while he’s distracted.

Nothing.

For some reason, I found myself opening the cupboards and checking. For a pedoclown sitting in my clothes after running in through the door and jumping in there slamming close the cupboard door behind him on its frame?
Now that would be ridiculous!

I’m not a chicken, you know. I like the idea of ghosts. I’d kill to get the chance to go to an actually haunted place just for the lulz. But understandably the little line between reality and my imagination tends to fade some days because the latter is like, this fat person whose fat keeps flopping on the line and chipping away at the paint.

Also my house is more than 50 years old, gimme a break! It’s bound to have all these pedoclown spirits running around. I could have sworn I saw the silhouette of a little kid in my room once, and the sibling attests to it too. Both the parents have felt people sitting on their pillows whilst they slept. And we all hear bumps in the night.

So. Maybe mine aren’t your average bumps in the night. Though there is the slight chance my entire family is genetically dysfunctional and all of just suffer from general paranoia. But the 55 year old haunted house thing is way more plausible, surely.

What if that bump in the night all of us have heard at some point is actually never a cat or the wind? What if every single time it’s the pedoclownspirit on your roof and you just say it’s something else so you can sleep at night? What if foreign spirits do exist and one sits in your room and watches you every day like a total psycho.

I am thinking all this when I realize Caesar’s been out in the garden for a whole half hour. I’m goin’ in! I grab the torchlight and creep through the plants cursing that furball. Suddenly I see movement behind the petunias. Caesar? Or.. pedoclown? I feel purring at my feet and Caesar’s like, whadup homie? And I’m like, OMGTHERESAPEDOCLOWNBEHINDTHOSEPETUNIAS.

The flowers shake and I think someone’s really in the garden and we’re all gonna die. A white.. thing.. flies out in the dark a few feet and Caesar runs towards it. NO CAESAR NO, PEDOCLOWN WILL EAT YOUR BRAINS.

It turned out to be a cat. Caesar’s got a girlfriend. I tell him now is not the time to impregnate our neighbor’s cat and grab him and go inside. Sheesh, cats these days.

Before I switch on the lights a shrill frightening AAHH! hits me in the ears and I go AHH! and throw the cat and they go AAHHH! and I flail around and shout AAHH PEDO! and the lights come on, and it’s the maid.

Horse tranquilizers. She says it’s time someone used them on me. -_-