Sunday, December 21, 2014

Sleep Paralysis Afternoon

Posted by at 12:54 AM
It had been a rough week for him at work , stretching beyond the normal office hours , swigs of coffee going in like his body constituted of 70% cafffeine instead of water ,  puffs of cigarettes being blown amidst the cloud of the usual business , and a soul restless, devoid of sleep.

'Take the day off'.

He looked out of his laptop screen and tried to figure out the source of the familiar voice.

'Take the day off, Sam'

His manager was standing behind him, arms rested on his chair. He was peering into his bloodshot , weary eyes.

'That's okay, I will finish this module then just a few bugs will be left to resolve, after that I can--'
before he could finish, he found his manager's arm fall onto his shoulder, with a gentle press followed by a pat on the back.

'You work really hard, and I appreciate it, I do. But I don't want my team to burn-out and lose their efficiency. Taking some rest is important. I want you to go home today and catch some sleep. Stretch it to tomorrow if you want to, and come back to work refreshed. No more coding for today.' he said.

It dawned upon Sam that he was slowly shaken back to being a human. He realized how he failed to remember the last time he could catch an 8-hour long nap. Feeling slightly elated, while the sense of work responsibility conflicting his emotions, he packed his bag, tucked his laptop and peripherals in , and headed for home.

He left his car at the office parking, but he was too drained out to drive , so he decided to take the office cab home.

Upon reaching, he decided to take a warm shower before he could crash. He looked around. His room was a mess. Dirty laundry, food plates , paper crumbles and plastic packaging lay everywhere. It's not that he likes to live this way, but in the past few weeks couldn't find time to take care of his household needs. He once had even contemplated of buying new clothes just to escape from all the laundry-work. Food was coming from outside on a regular basis. His bed seemed like the bedsheet was meant to stay atop it forever.

His bed. His soft, luscious, seductive, warm bed. He looked at it and began wondering how he just loved sleeping. Unlike others for whom sleep would just be a bare minimum necessity, he realized that he specifically loved the act of falling asleep, dreaming, waking up with drool on lips, and falling back to sleep. Before he could remember about the warm shower he was planning to take , he found himself falling, slowly, crawling towards , onto his bed.

He stayed asleep for some time but not for long.

He woke up with a sudden jerk motion upwards. He realized he was unable to make sense of the time of the day. It seemed like midnight, but he wasn't too sure. His head felt tremendously heavy , as if someone was mechanically squeezing his forehead inward. He decided to get off the bed and have a glass of water and some medicines. Soon he found that it was a herculean task for him to get off the bed. With much effort, he managed to stand on his feet , leaving the bed, and he headed straight towards the kitchen.

He had some water quickly, washed his face, and then filled a glass and took it back to his room. An aspirin would solve the problem, he wondered.

Upon reaching the room, he looked towards his bed.  The glass of water left his fist and went crashing on the floor as he looked on, petrified.

He could see himself lying asleep on the bed.

A calm, peaceful composure, his own self was sleeping well. He couldn't understand what was happening. Here he was, standing on his feet, and on the bed he could see himself, his own true self! His mind tried to register this as he could find a tingle of chill running down his neck.

He tried to move towards his sleeping self. He couldn't feel anything on his feet, no sensation at all. In few moments he could find himself falling backwards, his arms trying to find a support and cling to it, as he landed on the wall behind him. He found himself unable to do anything about the situation at hand.

A chilly wind started grazing him. Some good number of hours had passed as he looked on and saw his sleepy self turning on the bed. Still asleep. Suddenly, a bad feeling struck him. It was a feeling of despair and grief, as if, life will cease to exist if it were subjected to this feeling for a mere few minutes. He started crying and he could also see his sleeping self cry in the sleep. Drool started flowing out of both of their mouths.
Before he could take any further, he could see a dark , hooded figure standing in front of him. He froze. The hooded figure stared down towards the sleeping form of Sam. It seemed that it didn't take notice of the Sam who was standing transfixed on the wall.

The dark figure leaned close to the sleeping form of Sam. The Sam leaning on the wall tried to scream in order to wake himself up from the deep slumber that he was in, but it seemed as if he was making noise in vaccuum. Nothing came out of his throat.

Sam tried to move , to pinch himself if that could bring the consciousness back to him. As he continued his efforts, he could see that the dark figure was sucking the life out of the sleeping form. Sam felt as if he was losing his breath, as he started frantically to attempt throwing his limbs in vain. The life that the hooded figure was sucking from the sleeping Sam directly affected the Sam standing leaning on the wall. As the hooded figure sucked harder, trying to force the soul out of the sleeping body, Sam found himself getting closer towards his sleepy self. Closer, more closer as a shrill noise of pins scratching an aluminium plate filled his ears in the ultimate sense of torture one can imagine. Sam struggled hard, trying not to get sucked towards his own body this time, as if he knew that if that happens, something bad would happen to him and he might not wake up ever.

Noise. Force. More noise. Darkness everywhere as he started experiencing a blackout.

Suddenly, he heard a faint whisper. 'Stop breathing' it said. 'Stop breathing' . Sam couldn't decide what to do as his efforts to escape the hooded figure started failing . As he neared the blackout, he stopped breathing air. He could feel the force of the hooded figure getting stronger and stronger, choking his lungs, thrashing his chest as he experienced a complete blackout in the next moment.

He woke up with a sudden jerk motion upwards. 'Water' he blurted as he came back to his consciousness. He looked around, there was no hooded figure, and he found himself lying on his bed, with the trail of tears and drool all across his face.


Thursday, October 23, 2014

I Dodged a Rocket and Survived to Talk About It!

Posted by at 8:09 PM
After catching the The Judge for the second time in theaters today, I was satisfied that I didn't spend my precious Diwali afternoon watching Happy New Year. The Judge is the best movie of 2014 so far in the drama genre, in my opinion, and I suggest you all to see it.

Anyway, after dropping my friend at her place, I was driving my bike back to mine. The well-lit streets and the overall festive mood ( people wearing ethnic everywhere I could see, more crowd in the sweet shops than anywhere else , crackers , crackers everywhere!) gave a near-perfect picture of a well-commercialized Diwali eve. Although for people like me who have stayed in Jaipur/Delhi for years, Hyderabad would feel a little mellowed down, but hey, as long as you are able to celebrate, there's nothing to complain or feel bad about!

I navigated through the empty lanes that would usually be full of people during office hours. It seemed to be the Puja time as everyone seemed to be finishing up the religious aspect of Diwali in a hurry , before they head out and unleash the fireworks that they have in store. I drove on and I realized that I had no cash on me .I decided to hit the nearest ATM. I took a left and as I proceeded towards the ATM , a wave of lined red crackers greeted me . Yes they were set off while I crossed them , and briefly I enjoyed my action hero moment. Instead of being mad at the kids who were behind this, a stupid grin surfaced on my lips. Because I recalled how I used to do the same when I was one of them, when people on vehicles would pass by our streets!

After I was done with the cash withdrawal, I turned my bike to the same lane. Time to head home and celebrate a quieter Diwali, I thought as I sighed and fired up the engine. This time I was careful not head right into the firecrackers and I waited for them to finish one round. Meanwhile, my ears were getting used to the constant bursting noises in the background, as my eyes feasted on the colors that flew up in the air, making different patterns, beautiful duel of light and sound everywhere, as the city seemed to be well-soaked in the spirit of  the festival.

Once they were done, I drove past those grinning kids, and while I did so , I did notice that unknown to one of them , there was a stash of 'rockets' lying nearby. And to top that, this boy was having an electric wire fired up and held in his fist, whose sparks where falling pretty close to the rocket-stash. Before I could warn them or do something about it , saw that one spark fell and ignited some of the rockets, as I honked to drive their attention towards the disastrous firework that was about to unfold.

The kids, on seeing that , ran inside their gates. And as I started to move with my bike on full throttle , I heard a rocket move past me! It just made a really loud whistling sound and with some heat, it passed by my ears as I barely managed to dodge it! For a while I went white and as I came back, my instincts made me flee as I left the scene and rushed to my residency in full speed.

Quite an adventure I had on a Diwali eve, after a long, long time. And hey , to those who are reading this, I mean it , have a safe and a happy Diwali , very necessarily in that order!


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A List of Songs with great 'Goosebumps Factor' !

Posted by at 10:35 AM
Listening to music is an essential part of our lives. I think there's more to just easy listening or to listen just while you are doing something monotonous as it helps ease the associated boredom. For me , listening to music comes primarily for the appreciation that I render to them. And some of my favorite songs are simply present in my playlist for the 'goosebumps factor' they carry with them. 
So here's a list of those songs. I have added most of them  as I recalled, in no particular order:

Enjoy the Silence by Lacuna Coil

Turn the Page cover by Metallica

Coma White by Marilyn Manson

Late Goodbye by Poets of the Fall

Black by Pearl Jam

Bismil by Sukhwinder Singh from the movie Haider

E Tumi Kemon Tumi by Rupankar from the movie Jaatishwar

Other's Delight by Hooverphonic

Teardrop by Massive Attack and Civil Twilight's cover for the same

10,000 Days(part2)  by Tool

Still by Foo Fighters

Coil by Opeth

Guns Out by Young the Giant

Mammariyan by Shilpa Rao and Amit Trivedi from the movie Lootera

Hope you enjoy listening to the list. Do let me know of your list of songs which have good goosebump factor!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Sleeping as a Job

Posted by at 1:25 AM
A year or two ago, I remember a newspaper article about a job that requires you to lie down and do nothing but eat and sleep . It was probably some experiment of sorts being conducted by NASA (?)  I think . But as I recalled it today, I began imagining, how life would be , if you have a job that requires you to do nothing but sleep. And based on the number of hours you sleep each day, you get paid. 

Think about it. Would it be lucrative ? I am sure it would sound lucrative if it is a temporary job. Hell it can be a part-time job alright, considering we sleep everyday for some hours. 

That part-time job can actually push us to sleep more. Because the greed to earn more would make us quit our habits of sleeping late at night. That means a healthier lifestyle, and a good life. Order gets restored in your life, and subsequently everywhere else in the world. Peace and tranquility. Ah.

Now consider it as a full-time job. You have to do nothing but sleep as much as possible. There could be constraints wherein you have to sleep at least 8-10 hours a day else you don't get paid. Now don't ask me why would someone hire you for a job like this, but just for a while , imagine the consequences. 

Slowly, you start disliking the fact that you have to sleep at least 8-10 hours a day. If there's a chip strapped around your neck ( equivalent to an ID card, tsk tsk) , it will prompt your supervisor as soon as you wake up. 

That means, on the days when you are unable to get some sleep , you don't get paid. You'd start cribbing, wishing for some flexibility in the policies of the job etc. 

You'd have to sleep mandatorily so you won't be getting time to go out and spend the money you're earning and enjoy some quality time with your friends. You cannot take much vacations because you have a responsibility , being an experienced guy who has been working in this job for some years now , and you have to plan your trips carefully. 

What happens consequently is that you start wishing you get some non-sleep hours, eg- you would wish if you could just work on a desk-job in front of a computer instead of sleeping your head off . 

I hope you see the point I tried to make. Drawing parallels is a beautiful thing *smirks*.



Sunday, September 21, 2014

The Late-Night Shift

Posted by at 12:19 PM
It was getting late. Eyes glued on the screen console, he kept typing with his earphones on. He paused for a sip of coffee before he could resume his work. While he was putting down the mug, he checked the time on his wrist watch. 11:45 pm. He had to fix the bug in his code tonight, even if it meant staying back for hours. There was nobody at work except for the floor attendant in his night shift who passed him a weak , sympathetic smile as he passed on every aisle of the floor, arranging the stationeries, taking notes of the count of pens and staplers. He smiled back. This brief exchange of gestures was a daily routine for them these days.

At 11.50pm, his phone beeped. He checked the phone. It was his flatmate. "Throwing a house party today. Help yourself with some beer in the fridge in case you're late." He sighed. He couldn't remember when was the last time he had been to a party on a weeknight. He couldn't remember when was the last he had returned home by 8 on a weeknight. 

11.55pm.He stretched a bit, and decided to get another cup of coffee. He left his console and headed for the breakout area. Filled the cup with coffee, gulped a few quick swigs, and returned back to his cubicle. He unlocked the console while wondering if he had locked it when he left. The coffee cup escaped his grip and hit the floor as he looked at his screen in horror. His code had vanished.

'Too many thriller movies.' He slapped himself, and tried checking the system. None of the files would open, and his source code showed nothing. He could feel himself turning white and pale. Three hours of work, all gone. 

He kept typing frantically on the keyboard. His head was spinning. The coffee was spilled on the floor with an ominous mark. The code files were nowhere to be seen. As he kept scrolling up and down , his screen went blank. 

There was a bright flash. He looked on. A string of letters came across the screen. 'Hacked by CorpPirate' it read, before it went black and shut down.Before he could make any sense of all this, his phone buzzed. 
'Hello, late night at work?'
'Who is this?'
'Your well-wisher.'
'I am not enjoying this.'
'Of course you won't be enjoying. Not interested in knowing what happened to your code?'
'What do you know about my code?'
'Nothing. But maybe I can show you.'
He received an image. He opened it. It was a screenshot of his code.
'What's the meaning of all this?'
'That I have taken your code hostage.mwahahahaha. But you can get it back.'
'Well I will re-write it.'
'Your call buddy. Stay up all night with a half-asleep head, write a code full of bugs, keep decoding till tomorrow morning, all the best for your demo scheduled in the morning.'
The very thought of the demo made him panic. He realized he was not capable of coding from the scratch.
'What do you want?'
'Go home.'
'What?!'
'I want you to reach home in 15 minutes, and start up your desktop. You will know of the next steps there.'
'Right. And what if I refuse to do so.'
'You still don't get it , do you? Well, if you don't do that,  I will delete lines from your code. I am sure it will be a lot more fun to complete an incomplete code, with ardent bugs, don't you think?'
'Damn you. Alright I will do as you say.'
'That's more like it. You have 15 minutes. Set the timer.'
He decided to call his flatmate. They had spare keys to his room, they can open the desktop in case he gets late. He dialed the number. Nobody picked up. 'C'mon pick up! Pick up!!' He tried multiple times but in vain. 2 minutes had passed already.

He had to reach home. He got up, starting searching for his car keys. He was not able to ponder and think at all. Debug. Code from scratch. Demo in the morning. Debug. Code from scratch. Demo in the morning. Debug. Code from scratch. Demo in the morning. He packed his essentials from the desk, and ran out of his office floor. Clicked on the elevator keys. Nothing moved. 'Fuck it!' he took the fire exit stairs all the way to the parking basement. He found his car, got in, drove fast, out in the calm and pitch black night. The turns were sharp as he drove at a speed of 100. He reached his building in 10 minutes. Leaving the car outside, he entered the apartment, and took the flight of stairs. He realized that his mind was not working as all he could think of was reach his apartment. He reached the front door, reached for his keys. He keyed in, found his hand slipping because of the sweat, as he somehow managed to open the door up. It was dark. He clicked on the lights. Not working. 

Before he could make any move, there was sudden outburst of loud noise and a dash of powerful lights. 
"HAPPY BIRTHDAY DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUDE!"  He looked around. All his friends, his flatmates, everyone had gathered . A piece of cake was in the middle, surrounded by crates of beer. 'Fuckers!' he screamed, as one his friends came forward and hugged him. 'We knew you'd like the surprise!' he said. 'Yeah sure. It almost killed me! '  he said. 
'You made it well within 15 minutes eh!' his flatmates came up and elbowed him. 
'So it was you guys! But how did you manage to --?'
'Well it was Sam's idea from the beginning.' they said, pointing at a grinning Sam , his late-night office floor attendant. 
He now realized why he had found his console locked, when he came back from the breakout area with the cup of coffee, as a smile crept up his face.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Movie Review: Finding Fanny

Posted by at 9:06 PM
(please excuse typographical and grammatical errors whatsoever, I kept typing whatever thoughts came to my mind)

When I saw the trailers of Finding Fanny , I was reminded of Little Miss Sunshine. And don't take me wrong; I mean it in a good sense, and not that I am saying that I felt that it was 'inspired' from that movie. I expected something fresh , something natural coming out this time. I expected, well, a bit too much. And the reason why I considered to write this post is because I believe there are many out there like me who would have had the similar level of expectations from the movie.

The reason: Finding Fanny is a case of smart marketing where the Indian audience is hungry for fresh and original content, which matches the international standards. We are embracing the offbeat topics shown in our movies more, we like it when noir films like Citylights are presented to us now. This is a good sign, because this will encourage many makers to make movies that we would feel proud to call out, when we give examples of the movies made by our industry. So naturally, we would expect conviction of delivering what is promised to us.

Finding Fanny begins on a monotonous note, has some humor sprinkled here and there, loses purpose mid-way and ultimately falls flat by the end . I am not saying that I wanted the plot to be incredible because we have a strong ensemble cast here, but if you want it to be a road movie, then what's the harm in sticking to the basics?

Director Homi Adajania didn't nourish the film well, the way he did with Being Cyrus ( I doubt he will ever be able to reach the brilliance of Being Cyrus in any of his upcoming films) . He knows a lot about direction- the color palette is all perfect, the camera work, the setting , all great- he just doesn't seem to get a hang of what we call , er , telling a story. The final 20-25 minutes seemed as if he wanted to close many loops and simply finish his project, and that's sad because the movie seems to be incentive-driven, the basic idea which is: our heroes are out there, trying to find the lost love of 46 years of one of them . The dilation of the pupils, when Naseeruddin Shah dreamily expresses his joy in anticipation of getting closer to his Fanny, the close-ups when Deepika speaks about her life , the quip scenes when Pankaj Kapur tries to steal a physical contact with Dimple Kapadia- direction is working really well all throughout, but all that I couldn't see was the conviction, the same conviction in the work of the story-teller.

I don't mind having a movie with no storyline if it makes sense and gives me a feeling of accomplishment, but I would definitely crib if a movie reeks of negligence in places where things should have been taut , simply because in many other departments it is appearing to be a promising venture.

In a nutshell: Finding Fanny requires a lot of patience, lowering of expectations and a mindset where you tell yourself that be happy and content with what you're being offered, because the moment you begin to expect, the next frame will be full of brush-strokes of disappointments.

Oh and, watch Little Miss Sunshine, if you haven't, just to put things into perspective.

My Rating: 6/10

Monday, September 8, 2014

Conversations Under Low Light

Posted by at 2:10 AM
"Could you turn out the lights? "
"I will,  if you ask me nicely. "
"Haha sure. Turn out the lights."
"Okay. "
"So,  what are you thinking. "
"Nothing as such. Just some blank thoughts. What about you? "
"Ah likewise. But I am enjoying this darkness. And being with you makes it even better. "
"Hmm."

"Well let's talk about things. "
"About what? "
"Well you know, things. "
"Err okay... like?  "
"Like us. "
"Yeah sure. What about us? "
"The usual, you know. We meet every night at this hour, sit together and talk, I enjoy it. "
"It sure is a good time I have. "
"Remember the day when we met for the first time?"
"I do remember. "
"Hmm... It was great how you identified me uniquely out from the crowd. "

"It was meant to happen that way. Same school and all that.. "

"Perhaps. But I am so used to stay invisible you know. It's like people around me, don't even know that I am there, you know. Sometimes I want to complain and randomly pick fights with strangers. "

"We crave for attention without knowing its implications. It happens a lot many times. "
"True. But sometimes, you know. "
"I can understand."
"I hope you continue to do so always. "
"I will. "
"Thank you. "
"After all,  who else, if not me? "
"Well there's this guy in my school, he was a senior. I used to like him once, I wish he would notice me. Used to get his attention. Never really worked, you see. He would be sunk deep in studies. "

"So you fancy the nerdy type? "
"Oh shut up,  he wasn't a nerd. Just that he seemed a bit too focused. "
"Yet he missed you? "
"Yeah well, his loss you see. "
"I wouldn't really call it his loss. "
"Why would you say that?"
"Because maybe if you could make yourself more presentable in front of him, making your presence felt, he would surely have responded. "
"But I did try to talk to him. He never looked up. Used to think something is not right about him. But that's what I liked about him as well, you see. "

"So he didn't listen ?"
"Not sure. At least he didn't respond , you know. "
"And what did your friends have to say about this incident? "
"Never really spoke to them about him. I was afraid they'd spread the word, you see. " 


"Mia."

"Yes? "

"It's time to go home. "

"What, why? "

"You realize that it's late. "

"I can leave tomorrow morning, like always. "

"No,  I meant you have to go. "

"I will, but tomorrow. What's gotten into you, Bill? "

"You don't understand, do you?"

"What do you mean? "

"Mia, why did you not tell your friends about this guy? "

"I told you right,  I couldn't, I was embarrassed. "

"But you didn't tell me as well. "
"Bill,  you were my junior in school, and we had met only a few times . Surely you cannot hope me to share my crush stories with you, so early in our friendship. "
"Mia. You used to share everything with your friends."
"I know but--"

"Mia, don't you get it?  You had stopped sharing your thoughts with your friends after a point of time. "

"Who said that?  I used to! I--"
"And you used to tell me everything, even after you stopped talking to others after a point of time."
"I am not sure what is the reason behind this sudden outburst of yours. "
"Mia. You have to go. You. Have. To. Go. "

"I will but I like to stay with you. You understand me so well. I enjoy every minute of our conversations ,every single night. "
"There's a reason why you stopped speaking to your friends. "
"I don't --"

"Mia , you've been dead for the past three years. "

"What?  That's not true. That's not true. "
"It is the truth. The truth is, you are trapped in this world,  because of your unfulfilled love for that senior of yours. "
"But-- I--"
"You have to come to terms with this, Mia. You have to. You need to go. You need to leave. You have to find peace. In the afterlife, Mia. "
"No!  No!  Please don't say these things! OH PLEASE! "
"You will feel a sharp pain in your temple. And when I will turn the lights on,  you will be gone. I am sorry Mia, I had to do this. It is for your own good. " (approaches the light switch)

"No wait, wait. Please-- You did say that I would speak to you, right? How is it then that I was dead and I could speak to you? I am alive see?  This proves that I am alive ! Flesh and bones,  I am-- please don't do-- please --"

"There's a reason for that, Mia. You could speak to me, because.. " (turns on the light)


"  I see dead people. "



Near his bed, Bill finds his notebook, he picks it up. A list of names can be seen. Few of them are crossed out. He finds her name and crosses it out with a sigh.
Each name in the list have three more fields. Date of birth , date of death and cause of death. Bill looks at Mia's details, one last time.

Name: Mia
Date of Birth: 2nd August 1992
Date of death: 1 September 2007
Cause of death: Suicide

A homage to The Sixth Sense. Thank you, M Night Shyamalan.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

The Dream of a Conversation

Posted by at 10:18 PM
The following story was picked as one of the Best of 2014- Tangy Tuesday Picks Edition at BlogAdda.com. 


"I miss you."

"I know you do. I can feel it."

"It's been long, I so want to return home now."

"I know baby, just a day more, isn't it?"

"Hmm..."

"What's the matter? You seem a little upset. Something bothers you?"

"Nah I am fine. It's just that this preceding time before departure.."

"Well what about it?"

"It makes me sad. It kind of stirs me inside, and I find it quite unsettling."

"I know that feeling...been through that many times.."

"Hmm...I just wish I could somehow skip this moment and transport myself directly to the departure bit.."

"Just a few more hours baby, and you'll be with me. I have so many things planned."

"Ooooh, and what are they?"

"Surprise , surprise!"

"Oh c'mon, you know how I hate surprises. Better not let me know at all, that you're planning a surprise, if you don't intend to tell me what it is!"

"Ha ha, see that's the fun part . And look how I am enjoying this, making you go all crazy about this!"

"Arrggh, I hate this, hate you--"

"But I know you love me."

"...I do."

"Then , come."

"Where?"

"To me."

"Hah! And now you give me more desperation to reach you , sooner."

"Well at least, it would keep you wondering what the surprises are and would take your mind off that 'unsettling' feeling, right?"

"I love you, you should know that."

"I do. And you know my response."

"...."

"What? You have always said that you loved this reply of mine."

"Yes...after all this years.. I still remember how I used to say those three words and you used to reply with this--"

"With a hint of mischief. Taunting you--"

"And making me fall for you, even more."

"I know I am awesome."

"Yes,you are."

"Hmm.."

"Which is why , I would be coming to you for real , this time."

"What do you mean?"

"What I meant was I will be hitting the accelerator harder now."

"You're not doing anything like that."

"Why? What's the point in living like this? Thinking of you and going back to the place where we spent our days together!"

"But that is where you will find me...that's where I will always stay."

"It isn't , you don't understand. I cannot go back and tell myself that I have you--"

"Why do I hear the winds rushing faster?"

"Because I am driving at 120 now."

"For God's sake, please don't do this!"

"The reality, the truth is that, I will be with you for real , only this way. This is the only way left for me now."

"Please , please stop, oh God, please stop! Please!!"

"Death is the only way I have left for myself to take...to be with you...my dead wife..I....I...Love..Yo--"

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Waking Up

Posted by at 2:21 PM
He got up with a start. The world around him seemed hazy and distorted. A weird feeling was gripping his head.

I want to sleep, don't want to get up!

He was late for work already. Somehow he managed to gather his strength and tried to reach the switchboard. A few clicks later he started feeling as if he forgot which switches pointed to the tubelight of  his own room. Wiping his face, slapping himself, he got up, reached the bathroom.

*WHEEEEEPPPP*

*THUD*

He fell with a loud thud on the wet and slippery floor. He was well awake now.


Sunday, June 29, 2014

Ek Villain - A Hate Post

Posted by at 10:39 PM
The final scene of I Saw The Devil - where our protagonist puts the antagonist under a setup in such a way that he dies in the hands of his very own - it pierces your senses, wrecking your judgment to bits, making you sympathise with the devil in a way you'd feel that it is wrong. Such is the brilliance of the vengeance. Because it has to be crude, raw and real. It should shatter you when you see it on the big screen. 

And Ek Villain shattered my imagination in such a way, that only hatred remains in me for Mohit Suri.
Why, why would you destroy the brilliance of signature Korean thrillers ? Why can you not have an idea that's original?  Why would you put us to shame by making a mainstream  Bollywood movie which reeks of nothing but a propaganda to make money? And many such unending questions, rhetorics , cross my mind as I sat in the theater, seeing the essence of I Saw The Devil being shredded, page by page,  and being burned down to ashes, frame by frame.

The concept of cinema is to entertain the people. Sometimes, they come up with moral responsibilities of educating the masses, and yet sometimes, they portray the tragedy of real life. Mohit Suri's Ek Villain lacks the soul that it takes to make a vengeance thriller. We don't need backstories, we don't want unnecessary songs interluding the flow, and most importantly, we don't deserve such stupid screenplay that would compel us to bury our faces in our palms in dismay, multiple times. The actors seemed to be the director's puppet - it seemed as if they were there to  follow orders. Except for Riteish Deshmukh's commendable performance, everybody else seemed to lack conviction. 

Mohit Suri dotted every i's and crossed every t's when he lifted the idea from I Saw The Devil. He then decided to sugarcoat it with Bollywoodish dramatization. And so, Ek Villain ended up being a cover-up act, rather than being an attempt to make a good thriller. The love songs were wasted, sadly. But that's about it.

If you're a person who loves to watch movies and take them seriously, praising the effort put in every aspect of it, I would recommend that you go watch I Saw The Devil instead of watching this joke. If however,  you love cheesy lines flying in the air in every direction then I'd say--OH HECK!  DON'T WASTE YOUR TIME WATCHING EK VILLAIN! I HATE YOU MOHIT SURI FOR RUINING ONE OF MY FAVORITE KOREAN THRILLERS OF ALL TIME. 


And I say this on behalf of every person who has watched the original Korean movie: Trash it.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Let's Slow Down

Posted by at 3:30 AM
It's been really long since I have blogged a post that allows me to connect to you, my dear readers, hear-to-heart and share some anecdotes of my daily life. Perhaps the appreciation and encouragement I am getting for my story-posts , from you all , is something that is keeping the 'Connect To Readers' section a bit dormant. Nevertheless, here I am , and I hope you read , enjoy and relate to this post as much as you can.

First of all, a really noisy , hulk-like , sincere, and loud THANK YOU to all of you, for giving my blog 55000+ views. The blog receives close to 2000 hits a month these days. And I am humbled. I know it is inclined towards a bit of a bragging (picks nose) but truly, your comments, feedback and words of motivation just keeps me going, on and on, trying new , bold ideas to write on.


Now getting straight to the point (yeah I am Dr Digress). A lot has happened and changed in my life. For bad, for good, I can let the world do the judging. But I have learned a lot. Life is not an easy summit to scale you know, but every checkpoint you reach, every flag you hoist, you are bound to feel accomplished. A toast to that feeling of accomplishment. And for this very reason, I believe, we need to slow down a bit.

Let's spend more time on those seemingly insignificant things which are good but we somehow manage to take them for granted. Let's allow ourselves to experience longer the goosebumps we feel when we come across a splendid twist in our favorite tv show, let's allow the effort put by the people behind that outcome to sink in . Let's read more, let's not think much of the future because our third eye can have cataract without us knowing it. Let's travel , let's explore this beautiful country we live in. Let's unite for a better nation. Let's set aside some time to call our friends with whom we used to have those endless LAN gaming sessions. Let's do the unimaginable-eg  by dropping a mail to the most hated person of our department and acknowledging the fact that we do understand why they used to be the way they used to be- so that we stay prepared and put in these early stages of our career ( my college mates will get the reference!) . Let's just , try to slow down.

I believe in creativity. I feel that this is something that can make you feel accomplished at the darkest times. So do yourself a favor- write a story, a poem. Draw something, maybe doodle the face of the person you hate the most at workplace! Cook a really difficult dish- it will be your creation even if it tastes awful! For I believe that you can let yourself loose at times, and can see yourself home creating something beautiful , wonderful,  and delectable!

Ideas, they are everywhere. With so much potential inside ourselves, we can pick up something right out of thin air, and let it flow and materialize. It doesn't need to be something hard-and-fast, but it can be a betterment to something that's already in place! Identify the ideas . Let them give you some sleepless nights. And create something amazing. A game-changer. A name. A brand.

And lastly, while we are talking so much about the positivism that surrounds us, let's not forget to introspect. Let's ask ourselves some difficult questions- can we find some answers to them? Let's try , bit-by-bit , to improve ourselves. Let's make those thoughts count. Let's see a new person in ourselves, someone who learns. Everyday.

And oh, never skip breakfast in the morning. I know the post is ending on a random note but Psyduck is our King ! Heh heh.


Saturday, May 10, 2014

Buster, My Savior

Posted by at 10:04 PM
     [Based on an incident I had experienced in my childhood]

My wife and I decided last summer that we would be moving into this famed neighborhood of our town. The house was worth the rent it charged- the surroundings seemed to be quite a friendly one. Our 7-yr old son Jon was not so excited, though. Leaving his old pals from the place where we currently lived was not going well with him. Just to see him cheer up a bit, we promised him that we will be getting him a pet Pug in his next birthday.

His birthday came three weeks after we moved in. Our son was dyslexic; but he was good with sketching. We found a school for him in this new locality. He was happy to get enrolled. Playing with charcoal was something he enjoyed, and he progressed well in the classes. We got him the Pug on his 8th birthday.

He was not excited, as he somehow disliked the drooling bit of the dog. The Pug , on the other hand , tried to befriend him, but Jon would seem to push him away most of the time. Once , my wife Samantha suggested that he sketched a portrait of the puppy but Jon had replied 'He will drool so much, might as well wash my sketch away...'  and refused to sketch. It is said that no matter how much adults try to pamper their pet , it will always prefer to get the same treatment from the youngest member of the household. This wasn't happening in our case. We tried to coax Jon to give the Pug a name, without any success.

Jon would go to his art school on his bicycle . The school was 5 blocks away from our house. The alley he used to take would be full of street dogs and if he got a little late when returning , the dogs would bark at him and chase him till he cycled to our locality. He was afraid of the dogs, and soon we realized that most of the disliking he had for our Pug was primarily because of this. 'I hate dogs! They are scary!' he would say. Me and my wife would suggest accompanying him to the school and back, to which he would respond saying that other kids would laugh at him. Kids grow up faster these days!

Whenever Jon went out of the house, the Pug would follow him for a few 100 meters before turning back. It would always wait for him to return at the gates until he came back. Jon didn't make new friends much, as most of the children in the locality were elder to him. He would devote his time in his sketching and soon, his hard-work started showing up. He was improving with every passing day. Our Pug would try getting closer to him but every time it did, he would shoo it away. We still did not give it a name- we wanted Jon to do that with a hope that it would help him bond a bit with the dog.

One evening, Samantha and I were sitting in our front-yard, enjoying some evening snack and tea and discussing the busy week that had passed by. Jon had gone for his sketching classes. The Pug was waiting for him at the gate, as usual. It was around 7 pm and we realized that Jon would be coming back anytime now. Suddenly, we heard the Pug barking. Even though it was merely 3 months old, it did manage to sound a bit ferocious. At the next moment, it went out of the gate and began running towards the road. Fearing the moving vehicles  might run over it, I went out of the gate. I saw a magnificent scene that was taking shape-

Jon was cycling hard towards me. He was being chased by 4-5 street dogs, probably the ones from that alley. Our Pug was running towards him with its small feet and wagging tail, and soon enough , it crossed Jon . It started barking towards the other dogs, and as they  barked back, this slowed them down, and gave Jon a window of escape. Jon moved back fast inside the house. The Pug, on the other hand, kept barking at the dogs and in few minutes , those dogs ran away from the scene.  As we stood watching this scene , we saw Jon standing with us and staring at his pet. He started walking towards it. The Pug, upon sensing his presence, came running towards it and stood wagging his tail and drooling , near his feet. Jon picked it up in his lap , and walked back towards the house. Samantha became a little bit emotional on seeing this and even I felt a slight lump in my throat with a gentle smile on my lips. The simplicity of the bond our Pug shared with our Son was a beautiful phenomena. We were glad that Jon had responded to that , this time.

He drew a sketch, the next day. It was the depiction of the scene that had taken place the previous day. He had named the sketch- ''Buster, My Savior'' .




Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Delay

Posted by at 1:53 AM

This post was featured in BlogAdda's Spicy Saturday Picks listing, for the week ending April 26. Read the entire list of amazing posts, here
The early morning Pan India flight from Delhi to Dubai was scheduled on time. Ronit checked his watch. Shreya was going to be late again.  It's been more than a decade of their marriage, and  she would still make him wait.  He smiled to himself,  thinking of the past.  "Just like those college days." He remembered. While Shreya was trying really hard to get dressed before she they could leave, she could never match Ronit's speed.  "You guys, just have to jump into your jeans , put on a shirt and that's it!  Never even care about your looks. " she said,  trying to finger-comb her husband's hair as she passed by in a hurry. "Baal nahi ye gobar hai!" she giggled. "That's it!  If we don't start right now, we are going to miss the opportunity of seeing him off.  It's his first flight outside the country ! He needs us to be there..." he said. 
"Don't worry,  my son will be just fine. And why don't you admit that you're missing him more than anything, Hah!" Shreya said. 
In 5 minutes, they left for the airport. 


Siddharth was waiting at the sitting space outside the airport terminal.  He was going with his friends for a short trip to the US, where he was to represent India on the International Physics Junior Olympiad.  He was pretty excited.  After all,  how many 12 year olds get such an opportunity  to showcase their talent at a global stage! 
He sighed,  thinking of his parents.  They couldn't reach to see him off on time, even on a big day as this.  He was very frustrated.  He dialed his dad's number. It went to the voicemail.  "Arrgh!  Dammit! " he flicked the phone away into his backpack.  He knew his mom would be busy speaking to all the relatives about his trip, so there was no point in calling her. 

15 minutes later,  the electronic display indicated that the security checking for the Pan India flight to Dubai was getting started.  His teammates' parents had stayed there for some time,  then upon making sure that he would be waiting for his parents, they left to see their kids off. 
Time was running out.  Tears welled up in Siddharth's eyes.  "Even today, their business trip was more important to them.. " he thought.  Then as he was about to get up,  he heard his phone vibrate.  He checked.  It was a text from his father.  "We're almost there dude, just give us 5 minutes. And your mom says sorry for being late. I know right, how inconsiderate she is! " his dad's sense of humor managed to fix his mood a bit.  He laughed and replied "K come soon, m about to go in for sec - check! "

In 2 minutes, he could see his parents rushing towards him.  They met up and Shreya was getting hysterical, seeing his son go away for a whole week to a foreign land. "Don't make friends with people you don't know at all.  Never accept food or other stuffs from strangers.  Blah blah blah--" she was going on and on from what seemed to be an unending list of things she had put down for him. "Okay that's enough. Don't you freak him out now.  " Ronit interrupted. He looked Sid in the eye and without losing the eye contact he said, "Listen to me son.  It's going to be fun. When I went abroad for the first time, it was an unforgettable journey for me.  That remains my best trip so far. So you make sure you have a good time.." he said,  controlling his emotions hard,  seeing his son leave him.  "Trust me, you'll enjoy.. " he looked into Sid 's eyes. 
"... But not this time. " he said.  Sid looked into him by surprise. He looked at his mom. She nodded,  and smiled.  He suddenly realized that his head had started spinning. He started hyperventilating and soon his vision started getting blurry. He collapsed on the ground, and as the attendants came running by, before passing out,  he could hear his mother's voice, "...he'll be just fine."
Sid blacked out in the next few seconds.

He woke up in a hospital. He looked around, and he saw his teammates and their parents around him. He realized that he had been gone for a few hours. But he saw horror painted on their faces. 
 
"Where are my parents? Did I miss the flight?? Why did you guys not leav--" he slurred with much difficulty. 
"Sid, your parents never made it here.  " one of them started. 
"But I met them,  right outside the terminal! " he cried.
"..Sid, Pan India Flight AH-370 , it.. It..it crashed in the Arabian Sea. They're still searching for the airbus. "
"WHAT?!! "
"We waited for you to join us before the security check. But then we got a call from the travel agent that he got a call from your parents ,saying that you won't be able to take this flight, and they requested that he booked our tickets for a different flight. Your parents saved us man, your parents.. " he started sobbing.

"But I met them. I spoke to them outside!  I even received a text from my Dad! Here,  look!" he showed them the message. 
"Sid.." his friend spoke up.
"Are you sure you received this message today? " he asked.
"What do you mean?"
"This message was sent last night.." he showed him the delivery time. 

The newspapers carried the shocking news of the Pan India mishap all throughout their covers, the next day.  In one of them, on the bottom right corner, there was another news:
"Highway mishap: Honda Civic collides with a truck. Both the passengers dead. "

In memory of the souls who lost their lives in the MH-370 mishap. 



Monday, April 21, 2014

Triple-Fudge World Cinema Weekend- Short Reviews

Posted by at 12:07 AM
It's been quite some time that I had watched world movies (the last one being Welcome to the Sticks- a French comedy) , hence I decided to catch a few movies that had been on my ever-growing watch-list for a long long time.

I decided to start with the much-praised The Hunt , followed by the critically acclaimed A Moment to Remember, and my journey ended with the Korean thriller - Mother. I suggest you to watch all three of them- visually pleasing, with good plot and satisfying direction- world movies are a breath of fresh air when you are bored with mainstream Bollywood or Hollywood movies.


The Hunt (Jagten) - Danish

IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2106476/?ref_=nv_sr_1

A drama that touches upon a sensitive issue of child sexual abuse and the consequences it brings for the
person who is accused of the crime. I liked the way the director was able to leave a lasting impact. Mikkelsen was impeccable. You sympathise with the protagonist , hoping all the way that he will get justice of some form, yet the way it ends is surreal, with a slight jolt. This is an important social commentary where they show how the society will always split up into two groups- the haters and the supporters- for someone who is accused of a crime, even if not proven guilty. A must watch, Jagten raises questions about our morality and how fickle the human mind can be, when it is subjected to social issues of exceptional nature.
My rating: 8.5/10






A Moment to Remember (Nae meorisokui jiwoogae) - Korean

IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0428870/?ref_=nv_sr_1

Ah for the love of simplistic romance! It's been a long time since I have watched a romantic movie that is not a comedy, and yet it manages to move me, in a good way. This movie also reminded me of the genre that our film industry was a front-runner in: Romance. I realized how , even though we are progressing on the terms of intelligent cinema and no-nonsense thriller genres, our romantic movies are degrading with every passing year.
This movie was a proof of how masterful the Korean direction is , with the ability to turn a simple plot to an unforgettable one that they have, this one left a lasting impression on my mind. I hear they are making a remake of this one in Hollywood - just hoping they don't ruin it the way they ruined Oldboy. (Seriously, Zinda was a way better remake) . But overall, watch this movie for its simplicity. The background score was beautiful.
My rating: 7.5/10



Mother (Madeo) - Korean

IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1216496/?ref_=nv_sr_2

I am a big fan of Korean thrillers, and always advocate their movies of this genre. The Chaser, Oldboy,
Memories of Murder, I Saw The Devil- none of them disappointed me, rather, they held me in awe , as I saw why it was so tempting for producers of our film industry to lift ideas from these movies ( Oldboy- Zinda, The Chaser- Murder fuckin' 2) .  And even though the end product on Madeo was satisfying, the overall mood of the movie is a bit underwhelming. The plot talks about how a mother fights to save her son who is wrongly accused of murdering a girl. The climax did surprise me, although I was hoping for something bigger than that. Yet I found it to be a good watch. Direction is good, as always. Just hope that my upcoming watch ( The Yellow Sea) continues to retain me as a fan of Korean thrillers.
My rating: 7.5/10

Friday, March 21, 2014

Plunge

Posted by at 11:11 AM
He found a voice

The voice that tells him it's time

The time to make a move

A move that defines a decision

A decision that brings the thrills

The thrills that make us all better


So better that


Even if he fails

The failure makes him stronger

So strong that he is  ready for a plunge

The plunge that will open windows

The windows with brighter opportunities

The opportunities that enhance his life

The life that's really worth living.


Saturday, March 15, 2014

50 Thousand Thanks!

Posted by at 9:55 PM
The blog crossed 50 thousand page-views this week. I could sit down only today to put down my thoughts on this. Life is all but slow, and an 11-8 job ensures that I keep busy the whole week (including weekdays, yes) . But it is exciting, and thrilling as well.

To write about this milestone was necessary. When I look back , The Placid Rambler started on 2011 with an idea of mine , which was , to make a sincere contribution to the blogosphere. I used to mostly write movie reviews, as the early patrons of my blog would note, before I slowly geared into sharing personal life experiences with an attempt to make the posts funny and readable.

Then slowly but steadily , I moved into writing fiction. I realized I had a thing for writing serious drama/thriller. People appreciated the last-line twists I would put in the posts at the end (I was primarily inspired by Jeffrey Archer's short stories). Then came some opportunities to contribute in nationwide blogging competitions (IBL 2.0) , to contribute to a MicroFiction prompt series and many other. But mostly among all these, I realized I had found my readers- the loyal ones, the ones who would give me an honest feedback for whatever I wrote- good or bad. This was the most important thing that I took away from my blog.

The Placid Rambler gave me a lot. It improved my writing skills. People would often tell me that I always had it in me to write well. But I would still say that the conversion of that potential skill-set to an active skill-set happened mainly due to this blog. As a blogger, I would always encourage people to write and put their writings up online , for the world to read. I believe this actually helps as the strangers from around the globe would drop by and put some words of encouragement for you to write more, and sometimes, some words of criticism for you to improve. And trust me, that is a great feeling. Building a readership is nothing less than an achievement, and my Facebook and Twitter accounts have helped greatly.

As I proceed to conclude this post , I want to thank you all, my dear readers, for being patient enough to see me grow, and for being faithful enough to see me improve. I will never say that I have reached that point of learning and improving, where I won't need your support and feedback. That's never going to happen. Thank you so much , for being there, reading my posts, giving your weighted feedback, and recommending my posts to your peers.
       

         

The Placid Rambler.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Stillborn Story

Posted by at 6:25 PM
Ever since the fateful incident occurred , she was continuously in a state of shock and sadness. Hopelessness would mix with immense frustration as she would try to fight herself out of her misery. She missed him especially during these times.

Her relatives and family members tried hard to make her get moving with her life, without succeeding much in doing so. Some of them even started wondering if she was beyond any cure now. 

She walked towards the mirror nearby and looked into her image. Slowly , she started patting her belly , as tears trickled down her wrinkled cheeks. "Come, my sweet child, we are all waiting for you..." she murmured. Memories started flooding her mind as she tried hard not to remember the past..

The day the news got confirmed, she wanted Peter to know about it the first. Ever since he died, her world had changed, but she tried to keep herself busy. Her in-laws were supportive as well. They would always keep her pampered , in a way, accompanying her everywhere and granting every wish she wished for. The regular visits to the clinic spoke of affirmative health of the baby. Then came one day, when things started getting a bit more serious. 

She observed that her friends, family members and her doctors were being a little alert around her. But whenever she tried to know what the problem was, they would always respond very gleefully , assuring her that nothing was there that she should worry about. But somehow, she sensed, there was something not quite right. 

Soon they got an attendant to take care of her all the time. The nurse would look into every single activity of her day- from making sure she ate the right food to controlling the doses of the medicines she took- the nurse had been forced into her life, making her feel like a toddler. 

As the date of the delivery started approaching, the strictness in the air grew coarser. One day, all of a sudden, she was informed that she would have to go under the knife immediately, weeks ahead of her scheduled delivery date. "Else there could complications." They said. She remembered how fast things moved that day.

She gave birth to a stillborn. 

She looked up into the mirror, her eyes filled with absolute horror as she returned back to her present. She started sobbing mildly. Her friends and family members stayed for some time with her, before they decided that it would best if she were left on her own for some time. They left the room quietly. She saw them leave through the reflection on the mirror. 

Her curled up lips slowly turned up to a wry smile, and went back to the previous state of grief again. She started mumbling:
"... you , you let Peter die.. you couldn't take care of him well enough!"
"Peter never loved you, he loved me. He proposed me, it was I who had agreed to marry him."
"...you manipulated him..she always had his eyes set on me..you stole him..away from me.."


Outside her room, her team of doctors and psychiatrists joined her family members. One of them started speaking after ensuring that they were out of her hearing range.

"You all have to understand and be with us. We know it's a difficult time for you all, but please try to understand the complications of the case we are dealing with here. It's hard to digest, but we request you to be patient. "

Her psychiatrist began: " Ever since Peter died of  lung cancer, Amy had been in a state of mental dilemma and shock. She encountered a state of  frustration that kept seeping into her head, clouding her thoughts. We have looked into her medical history. We realize and understand that she used to fight with her inner self , blaming herself for the demise of her husband. You can say that she was at times overpowered by her inner thoughts, which made it extremely difficult for her to differentiate between the complexities of her life. She is very sick, and you all have to digest this fact, no matter how difficult it is for you. She was diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder when she was a teenager. There are two persons living in her mind, one is the Amy we know, and the other is the Amy whom we never noticed."

Pausing briefly to allow the words to sink in, he continued:

"She was an only child to her parents. She had a sibling rivalry , a normal phenomenon among teenagers. But she had the rivalry with her inner self, the 'other' Amy. With the passage of time, the other Amy started becoming stronger and more prominent in Amy's life. Our guess is that the rivalry never died between the two personalities."

"The sudden decline of the fetus' condition inside her womb raised the alarm, but by then it was too late to save it. Amy's attendant had found a half-empty bottle of  Mifepristone pills in her closet. It's a drug used very frequently for medical abortion, and she had started consuming it when she was 8 weeks pregnant. Our theory , upon our thorough examination is that, Amy's conflict with the other Amy extended beyond her, or rather, the conflict extended onto  'their' love for Peter. It's quite clear now that the other Amy could never withstand the fact that she wasn't chosen by Peter, and she couldn't allow our Amy associate with him. She blamed her for his death. It was only a matter of time before she would take steps to ensure that Amy doesn't give birth to his child."



Tuesday, February 11, 2014

An Uncertain Ending

Posted by at 2:21 AM
This post is featured in BlogAdda's Spicy Saturday Picks (Feb-15, 2014). Check out the entire list of selections here.



The closer he looked into the mirror, the more he realized that he was getting weaker by every passing second. The world seemed to come crashing around him,  with the saddest of the songs playing live for his passing. He knew that he didn't have much time, yet something in his mind still said that he could still touch a million lives, put a dent in the cliched dreams of the people of the world, and do something that would make him immensely popular, even after his death.

He suddenly had an idea.  He found a pen and a notebook and started drafting words on the pages.  He kept going,  on and on, for the next few weeks-between the routine visits to the doctor and back home, between the chemotherapy sessions and sleeping for small durations - whenever he found time, he would just scribble. He had picked a particularly massive notebook,  and he was using new refills for his pen everyday. He went on writing, and one day, he realized he was done writing an 800-page long book. Satisfied, he started mailing excerpts from his book to the reputed publishing houses of the country. He got promising responses from them, and soon enough, he agreed to sign an agreement for his book with one of the reputed publishers.
When he went to sign the agreement, he had put forth only one condition- they would receive  the last chapter and the title of the book only after his death. The publisher initially refused to comply,  but seeing the plot he wrote being so incredible that it had the potential to become a national bestseller, they reluctantly agreed.
He died two weeks later.  The publishing house received a mail from his mailing id, apparently sent by his friends as he had arranged.  They opened the document.
The first page was titled- 'The final chapter'
The text that followed was as under: "...and thus, the terminally ill Marcus locked himself in his room,  and hang himself from the ceiling fan to death. The end. "
They were flabbergasted as they were not expecting such a shocking ending. Moreover, the demise of the protagonist of the novel, left the story on a cliffhanger. Such was the intensity of the text that when they reconnected the dots from the beginning of the novel to the end, they realized that they had read a masterpiece which will get a cult following in the country for many decades to come. They gasped and sighed for the passing of the author,  for they knew that he would not be there to see the success of his creation , and also,  when the readers of the book will cry their lungs out demanding a sequel (because the plot was a cliffhanger) , they would simply be at loss of not getting to read any further installments of the story.
The next page contained the title of the book. Goosebumps ran through their bodies as they read it. 
"The Planned Suicide" 
 
They had heard from his friends that he had committed suicide the day he died. It did not take the publishers much time to realize why he had intentionally and notoriously left the plot of his novel unfinished.

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