Monthly Archives: July 2013

Socially Functional Sociopaths and Shonda Rhimes and Shit

I’ve been watching Shonda Rhimes recently. I don’t mean I’ve been watching her through binoculars while she bathes or anything. I’ve merely been watching Shonda Rhimes’ show Scandal. I have no idea if it is critically or publicly acclaimed. I like it enough – it’s fun and makes you question things and something about Kerry Washington’s lips makes me want to have sex with her, or possibly watch her have sex with someone. Thankfully the internet supplies me with the uncensored version of the show which does have an adequate amount of sexing Kerry Washington. My god, I’m a freak.

Be that as it may, one of the weirdest things about Shonda Rhimes’ shows is the people in them who are in love. They’re all scared and stupid and full of beautiful crap, as is the case with most people, but somehow they all get to a point fairly early where they tell the person they’re in love with. I don’t understand either of these things – the being in love or the telling. But we’ll leave the former as being symptomatic of any number of amateur psychology reasons that you fuckers will be glad to come up with. What’s interesting to me is the telling/ confessing of love. That is a very curious thing to me.

See contrary to popular opinion, I do have feelings. They’re perhaps not as strong as what is considered normal and I have been known to not pay attention to them, but they do exist. I have never been in the business of telling them to people at a moment’s notice. I’m don’t just go about willy nilly revealing my love for being the little spoon while being the big spoon for a pillow to people I sleep with, or my need to have my friends think of me as smart if not competent. No, I like any other normal person keeps these horrifying hoomun (that’s how you spell the slang for homo sapien, right hoomun scum?) tendencies to myself till I inevitably tell people via the internet.

But then there are Shonda Rhimes characters who have their own insecurities and what not for a good while, but inevitably, about three episodes into first realizing it, they end up shouting or whispering or blurting or in some cases eye fucking out the truth to the concerned person. And they all seem so fucking happy about it. As if being in love is the most wonderful thing they ever felt.

Eye Sex 1

Unless being in love is something like having your first major crush at age 12, with the whole heart pounding, stomach butterflies, constant smiling situation (Oh person from adolescence whose name is Adi, having a crush on you as freakishly as I did may have ruined me for other men), I don’t see how that’s possible. Whenever I’ve come close to having feelings since crossing the age of 13, I usually felt disgusted with myself. On rare occasions I’d feel neither good nor bad about it.

The point being, I don’t go any of the above routes in expressing my loving hoomun feelings. Perhaps there is a name for people like me, and as much as I would like it to be high functioning sociopaths or mad (wo)man in a box or selfish bastard [perhaps I should pay respects thusly to Sherlock or Doctor Who or Community every week till they come back into my life?] I can’t take credit for those terms, and I really like taking credit. So how about, let’s see… socially functional sociopath? Get it? Cause I’m sort of emotionless but appear and am nice, friendly and marginally competent at parties and other hoomun gatherings? Competent enough to land a place in college based on an interview/ viva thing recently.

Sneaky Happy Cox

So here, after a suitably word consuming and meandering introduction (It’s what people expect. I’m a panderer. It’s my nature.) I’m going to list without numbering, the number of ways in which people like me show affection. I’m not alluding to sexual affection exclusively, especially because that is usually expressed by having sex or by some seriously disturbing sexual fantasies. Apart from hopefully tickling the funny bone you have near your elbow, this will allow me to waste a bit of time looking for/ stealing appropriate gifs from tumblr. This is one of my sexless porn equivalents. Others include those pictures of vast libraries you find on the internet, some TV shows and those pictures of the interiors of wood cabins and other cozy woody places. Not a euphemism.

If I like you when I first meet you, I will very likely talk to you for a while and just past the stage where we’re all,” we should find out each other’s names and digits and facebook hashtag or something”, I will leave because I don’t want to ruin it. If we meet again, we may exchange above given details. Then if you start messaging me too much, or poking me or inviting me to Farmville or whatever it is you people keep asking me to do just because my name starts with an ‘A’, I will hate you in heart in heart (dil hi dil mein for those who don’t know NALSAR inside jokes) but not enough to spit on your dead skull. Just enough so I keep pretending I have to go give my dog a bath every time you try to chat.

Sometimes, people like me tell people that we love them just to appease them when they seem to be distant or needy. This does not mean that I don’t love them. In fact, it means that I do love them, but not at that very moment when I’m telling them about it. At that moment, I’m exasperated and I want to assure this person that they matter, even though as previously mentioned, they matter in that moment as a person who is not letting me be awesome. And I hate it when even if I DFTBA, someone cockblocks my A (Google it assholes). So technically, I guess in that moment when us Socially Functional Sociopaths (or SFS’ if you’re cool) tell you after you doubt us that we love you, we don’t even like you. We’ll love you later, when you’re not being a little bitch, bitch.

As soon as I have a little alcohol inside me and its hit me in the slightest, if you’re a friend I compliment you about anything in a voice that does not sound strained, it means I have a great deal of affection for  you. Now be careful, I don’t mean regular compliments like “your dress is pretty” or “when I look into your eyes, I see the universe and all of time” or “you’re grammar is fantastic”. I mean compliments that seem all life-empowering and shit. Here’s a recent one I pulled out for my friend Voldemort (it’s a code name for a woman) – “I can’t ever imagine you taking shit from anyone, like, ever. You’ve always seemed too smart and strong and powerful to me to ever take anyone’s shit. Ever.” Yeah. So people who are not friends with me because you’re dicks without taste, that is the kind of life affirming crap you’re missing out on. I’m sure Voldemort wouldn’t mind that I’m using me heartfelt compliment as an advertising tool to acquire other friend investors. Also, if us SFS’ are drunk and we tell you we love you and then list off a set of your failings, it means we love you, but we’re being honest and telling you that sometimes you suck. You may return the back handed compliment any time and we’ll be happy to receive it, so suck it up.

When we yearn for you in a romantic fashion, we have a myriad of ways to deal with it. My personal method is to go to my room after a bad day of being angry with myself, then I will literally bang my forehead against a wall muttering, “Stop it. Stop it. Stop it.” That doesn’t work in a practical sense, but I do end up thinking its silly which leads to me not paying enough attention to it. In my experience, unless its some kind of life changing romantic feelings, most of said feelings will go away if you don’t devote enough time to them. I know a fellow SFS who becomes mean to her crush by nitpicking on every tiny flaw they can find in the person. Another SFS buddy does the fuck-every-other-available-person thing. These are not the only ways one goes about shows/ deals with romantic feelings as an SFS, but it’s something. And most importantly, we don’t fail eventually and then go about telling said person in a supremely heartfelt and articulate manner about our endless love for them, like these fuckers from Ms. Rhimes’ playbook.

Fuck these guys, am I right? Seriously, I'd fuck both of them.
Fuck these guys, am I right? Seriously, I’d fuck both of them.
Yeah. They say shit like this. I'd fuck both of them too. Her more than him.
Yeah. They say shit like this. I’d fuck both of them too. Her more than him.
Yeah no shit. Normal went out the window along with my breath when you started eye-lovemaking each other in the Oval Office. JK LOL ILY. I hate you.
Yeah no shit. Normal went out the window along with my breath when you started eye-lovemaking each other in the Oval Office. JK LOL ILY. I hate you.

No. These characters clearly exist to make people like me believe that nothing in real life will ever compare to the feelings we can have in our imaginations. The only time two actual people have looked at each other like this are Marina Abramovic and Ulay.

Skip to 1:10 if you’re impatient. Read up on them if you’re not. Basically they used to be partners and lovers. They hadn’t seen each other in ages.

And they weren’t even together at the time. They were reminiscing. Without words. Just…. I have to go cry.

Alright, another manner in which us SFS friends tell each other about feelings is by saying “you know you’re special” very angrily. Because we both know we shouldn’t be special. Special people should exist for other people. People who regularly tell each other things like “you’re my person” and “you’re my best friend” and “I’ll do anything for you”. The closest I ever came to express how much I care was when I got shitfaced drunk on my last night in college and I shamefacedly whispered to a friend with whom I was just making up to “please don’t take _____ away from me”, ______ being the friend whom I was deathly afraid would one day have to pick between me and my feuding friend. I know it’s complicated without names, but just … think about it for half a second and you’ll figure it out. If you could figure out Bilbo’s speech, you can do this much. Anyway, I’ve never been more embarrassed in my life.

If you’re my parents, I personally show affection by being my worst self around you. Nobody else gets to see that whiny, snot-nosed, crying, under-confident, angry, door-slamming, passive aggressive, weak nightmare. I show all of these tendencies to my friends, but never all together. By extension, my sister and my dog get to see this as well.

Now its important to remember that no matter how similar our symptoms, much like AIDS, SFS is acquired in a myriad of different ways. Some are psychologically and/or physically scarring, others are merely regular sad experiences that an already fragile mind chooses to filter by becoming an automaton as far as possible (this last one is me if yall idiots didn’t already guess). This means that the manner in which we interact with our very first social group – our family – is going to be vastly different from the manner in which we interact with friends, and never in the same way. Some SFS’ are extremely friendly with their parents. Some have a love-hate relationship. Some have an angry or even non-existent relationship. Shit’s complicated.

So next time you encounter someone who seems to grow aloof as you get closer, do not despair, they may be suffering from SFS, which as I have clearly demonstrated is not a made up disease that tries to excuse first world fear or insecurities about people liking us. Nope. What you want to do with victims of SFS is grow really close to them and never mention said closeness till you’re both hammered. And try not to have casual sex with them. They will be very suspicious of you afterwards.

That’s all, folks.

I am very happy this week. The in-between-ness is over! I have some basic stuff figured out. I know where I’ll be for the next two years, and in the meantime I know who I should be talking to and what I should be doing in those two years that will help me with doing more things I want to do. Let’s not bore you with these details, mah frands. I will tell you I’m going to be studying Film Studies with a heavy emphasis on creative writing of all types. At Ambedkar University. Ha! I will be seeing Shivaji Panekar on a regular basis. And though I only recently found out about him, I was excited enough at the prospect that I had to calm myself down in case I started gushing incoherently during the interview. I’m excited and apprehensive and nothing in my life is as blah blah, you don’t need to know about the ecstasy of my inner soul right now. You don’t care. You don’t know me. You don’t know my life. Okay?

Okay.

Also these are books I got from Daryaganj. I shall read them. You read them and weep. Or see them and weep, I guess. Whatever.

IMG_0562

Ok. Ta.

Billy

Why I’m elitist and against all men in all of earth.

I know I didn’t post last week. There was a really good reason. I can’t tell you about it, but it was a legit reason for once. And once that reason was over on Friday I spent the rest of that day and Saturday curled up in my bed in the fetal position, looking for something on the internet that would distract me from desperation and fear and the awful in-between-ness of life right now. I also ate hot dogs and momos.

Embarrassing secret in lieu of said non-posting – Sometimes I look down at my boobs and stare at them for a while, simultaneously thankful, exultant and critical. I have been assured that this fascination with having boobs is not entirely abnormal. Either way, yes, I look at them and hold them a bit and wonder if I could do a Molly Ringwald lipstick trick from The Breakfast Club (I can! I just checked. With the right support, I can! Ha!). None of this is sexual. It’s just another version of nail biting, finger tapping, ear-rubbing, hair twirling. Just something you fiddle with while doing something else.

Over the last few months, I have witnessed my friends go through a lot of gender/ sex based trouble, from being ogled at unwillingly by regional news cameras to learning about the number of ways in which we put ourselves down in the workplace. What really made things awful was when a friend had to learn how to deal with stalker behavior in the workplace.

Before I get this going I want to set down the usual caveats – I do consider myself a feminist by which I mean I don’t think there’s anything wrong or right about women waxing, not waxing, crying, not crying, having sex, not having sex, charming snakes, not charming snakes, falling in love, not falling in love, not having babies, not having babies… That last is because

h
Why would anyone want this coming out of them?

Coming back on point, being the clearly militant feminist that I am, my views on this subject may be not very balanced and may in fact be highly vagina leaning.

Also, I haven’t watched Raanjhana despite Abhay Deol’s presence, so this is NOT a review. I’ll merely be talking about a certain disturbing trend in Indian cinema that I have alluded to in the past – “Love” being continuously represented as creepy with just a hint of completely cuckoo stalker behavior. And yes, I have read Shobhaa De’s views on the film, as well as the reply from the director, as well as commentary on said reply. Allow me to get a word in edgewise despite having no authority whatsoever other than a lifelong affair with movies and having a uterus.

Despite all my clever book learning and rampant elitism and intellectualism and other isms of the same nature I, like many other ism fetishists, automatically accepted what my childhood told me was irresistible – the guy in the movie who is strong and insistent and determined and grabs hold of the girl and plants one on her and convinces her that he deserves her and that she should be with him and give him a daily taint licking. 90’s Bollywood left no doubt in our minds – the thrill is in the chase. You cannot possibly do anything less than declare everlasting love or crude lust in the process of wooing a girl. And that’s fine. It’s a movie trope and definitely a more problematic one than most gender-wise, but fucked up machismo oozed out of practically everything Bollywood, so whatever.

What becomes tedious however, is the inevitability of success in all these movies. Bollywood would have you believe that this behavior will actually be appealing to a normal woman. That the girl, who angrily rejects the guy who man-handled her under the pretext of synchronized dancing while being surrounded by at least ten other men, actually turns her back to him and smiles “secretively” at the oh-so-charming antics of her secret love. That she actually likes being followed home (For lack of anything typically Bollywood popping into mind – Sarfarosh) and taken pictures of without her knowledge (Kaho Na Pyaar Hai) and basically being eye raped every time she encounters the guy (Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Main Hoon Na, ). And yes, it is imagined visual rape as soon as you’re obvious enough to make her aware of your constant ogling, angelic background choir and imaginary violin playing notwithstanding.

And this chain of not-real-events replicate themselves in cyber space pretty well. Believe me, I have nothing but love for the www. It gives me books, movies, music, games… without it I would be forced to watch regularly scheduled television for entertainment. Oh and porn; I wouldn’t have porn without it. The internet is a revolutionary platform for the socially ill-practiced – your shy people, you introverts, your asocials, your high functioning sociopaths.

Ha! Sherlock!

All of us thrive on the internet.

On the other hand, introverted and shy roadside Romeos now have a platform through which they can virtually cat-call/ manhandle/ make things uncomfortable for a girl by sending messages such as “rain drops r falling on my brain and my whole heart is in love with uuuu!!!” or “sexy picture” or “I am always with u, u don’t know me” or “I called ur mobile from in ur home after I broke its lock. My love is 4ever.” Note the bad grammar – it will become relevant soon enough.

At least unlike amateur creepy photo-stalking or torso grabbing while dancing, Raanjhana’s creepy behavior seems to largely be based on wrist cutting and other forms of emotional blackmail. The former by the way, wouldn’t even kill you unless you keep the cut wrist submerged in water for at least a few hours as you wait for a slow death to come along (I know because I listened in 10th grade science and read a few detective novels). However, this does not make the “you’ll eventually get the girl to fall for you after years, nay LIFETIMES of creepery” lesson less irritating.

At the risk of sounding like I’m facetiously pacifying a simmering crowd, as far as considerations of different cultural backgrounds and socio-economic factors are concerned, I’m never one to dismiss them. I spent most of my last semester in college debating in in its favor and writing papers about it. If you hit on a girl in a club in India, she will most likely be messaging ten people her location and your description at that moment, because she’s never had a good experience with being hit on by a stranger. In other countries, nobody’d give a rat’s ass. If you talk to a guy in a mildly familiar way in some/ most small towns and villages, there will likely be an assumption that you’re interested in them. In Delhi, it probably means that she may or may not be interested but you’re going to ask her to ride on your Freudian Bullet motorbike repeatedly. In law school it means she has no feelings for you and she’d like to stop talking to you soon.

The problem with the real world, especially the real urban world, is that when boy from who cares meets girl from city, feces goes down, motherlovers. I’m not saying all guys from who cares indiscriminately fall in love and become creepy. But I am saying that under most circumstances, largely due to the kind of turdy idea of “romance” said boy is brainwashed with largely because of movies (because let’s face it, Indian parents are unlikely to talk to their children about love and/ or feelings) and other boys who watch movies, as soon as boy has a crush it becomes something intense that illicits the kind of awful poetry that Elizabeth Bennet was talking about – it’ll drive affection away like my dog drives away rats. And as soon as something intense is recognized, the boy goes on to woo the girl in ways that all sources of romantic information (movies and perhaps songs) have shown to yield positive results – hack her social networks, stalk her where you can, write aforementioned poetry (for lack of a better word), tell her about all of the above, ask her out, and when she says no, either be disproportionately disappointed or stark raving mad, bad mouth her for “leading you on”, and if you start having too many feelings, hope to exorcise her ghost by sprinkling/throwing acid on her face.

I understand that its not entirely one person’s fault that they were brought up in a culture where rejection by a girl meant gun shots (Punjab and Haryana, as I pointed out to a friend who didn’t see the problem with Rose’s fiancé angrily shooting at her and Jack in Titanic) and/or acid before one could achieve closure. It’s learned behavior, and it doesn’t mean you’re a sick individual. However, that doesn’t take away from the fact that it’s making the long suffering recipient of your badly written poetry, your e-cards, your eye-rape, your bullets and your leftover household acid, VERY uncomfortable.

Sometimes your behavior maker her too angry – about someone online stalking her and violating her privacy – to actually go about her normal life without seething; sometimes she’s uncomfortable and frankly a little scared of what your invasion of her personal space means for what little freedom she has been afforded by an already unsafe city; sometimes she’s uncomfortable and upset because even though she tried to tell her boss about how she was feeling, they told her you were from a small town and so she should probably excuse your creepiness as the behavior of a “die-hard romantic” and try to be kind and perhaps not lead you on in any way; sometimes she doesn’t like being made responsible for your feelings, sexual or otherwise; sometimes she’s uncomfortable because she didn’t want to die at the hands of an asshole with a gun; and sometimes she feels bad because she looks at the mirror and can’t see a recognizable human face anymore.

Of course, some of these uncomfortable feelings are worse than others. However, as a member of a functioning society, boy from who cares, don’t you think you should try not to make her work life or her social life or her life in general uncomfortable in any way, just because you felt something? I’m sure you have made some male friends who were born and brought up in the same culture as her. Ask them where you went wrong. And perhaps ask your employer to tell you how you can act so as to not make the workplace an uncooperative space for everyone.

And don’t give me your claptrap about small town, “pure”, “unconditional”, “unfiltered” emotions versus the “polished”, “hard headed”, “emotionless” mentality of the Big City. I don’t see people raising such a fuss in favor of small towns when a girl feels those “pure”, “unfiltered” emotions for a boy of a different caste, or when a girl tries to passionately run away with a guy in lieu of those “pure”, “unconditional” feelings, regardless of her being from a city or village. This is not about small towns being better than cities for the soul. It’s about men believing they have the right to jizz their feelings all over women, who should be so grateful for said feelings that lack of reciprocity is an insult worthy of anger or emotional blackmail or violence.

As for films, there are some instances of non-creepy devotion and/or wooing that can be an example for most young men – Jab We Met is one. He likes her but at no point does he make that her problem and he doesn’t creep her out, or emotionally blackmail at any point. Oddly enough, Faizal did a perfectly spiffing job as well in Gangs of Wasseypur, though I suspect that’s largely because that girl would have very likely bitch-smacked him all the way to the coal mines had he tried to make her uncomfortable. Wake Up Sid is another. Oh well, I guess these are largely based in urban settings.

Wait, no. There are examples in almost all 90’s cinema as well as current Bollywood, city-based or village-based, that accurately depict how most normal women would react when they’re creepily hit on by men they don’t like – it’s the villain. The villains in most Bollywood films at some point or the other creep on the heroines in highly discomforting ways. Usually, the hero steps in to save the day, and puts the villain in his place, but that’s not the point. New Informational Ad:-

“You there. Yes you, the man who regardless of where you were born and brought up, is confused by the myriad of ways in which girls will not like your moves, literal or figurative, or worse, think of you as crazy, out of balance murderer. You know asking for permission for every little thing doesn’t work. But when you send her a mail detailing the dream you had of watching her sleep and waking up to masturbate about it, she gets a friend to call you up and threaten to feed you to rats. Don’t worry. We have a revolutionary system that helps you navigate these tricky waters, and it requires no additional learning apart from the same sources you learned your current creepery from and mistook it for charm.

Next time you feel those intense feelings for a girl, and you start thinking of all the ways in which your favorite heroes from the movies got their girl, STOP. Now, think of that same movie and remember when the villain troubled the girl, and how bad she felt? Now every time you want to make the girl fall for you, or hack her social networks, or write poetry about her and send it to her two weeks after having first met her, don’t imagine yourself as the hero. Imagine yourself as the villain, and think of her friend who calls you to inform you about how and when you’ll die and where your body parts will be hidden as the hero.

You can talk to her and even mildly flirt with her, but as soon as she gives the slightest indication that she doesn’t want to hear it, you are no longer the hero. But you can avoid being the villain, and instead be some kind of side character. Telling her she’s a bitch for “leading you on” or “friend-zoning” you, or pursuing her even further, or cornering her and following her in further attempts to make her fall in love with you, makes you the villain. So does throwing acid at her, raping her or murdering her or anyone she cares about, but that should be obvious. Your villainy would give her the divine right, acquired as just compensation for eons of female suffering at the hands of assholes, to tell you to fuck off, and then to cut off your penis and make you give it a blowjob, in that order.”

Yes, I know. How very elitist and pedantic and feminist of me.

Too sleepy now.

Bye fuckers.

–          Billy

P.S. – I know this theme is not as colorful as the previous one, but at least you don’t have to strain your eyes in order to read it.