This summer I was part and parcel of the wedding of a person near, dear and true – My sister. With it came all the drama & shenanigans of any Indian wedding. But while I was unfailingly devoted to the cause – Get her and my brother in law married amidst all the ruckus & ballyhoo and come out of it sane ( though that is still debatable ) - I never predicted the varying degrees of discomfiture my queer self would face throughout the entire process that lasted a good 8 months, with particularly brutal intensity in the last 30 days. I say my queer self almost as if it were another part of me.
What happens when your identical twin brother whom you’ve spent all your waking hours for twenty years, becomes your sister? Red without Blue
is a documentary about just that.
This past weekend, my cousin called and invited me over for dinner. She knows I'm gay & has met The Girl. Since coming back from Canada this was going to be the first time I was going to meet her & I kept looking for hints in the conversation we had, where she was inviting me over, to figure out whether she was also inviting The Girl.
There are layers and layers of missing.
The first ones you tiptoe around by sinking your teeth hard into chunks of work, allowing yourself no space to breathe. For the …
I remember being one of two Indian kids at my primary school, and one of maybe five kids of color. I remember my best friends as clear as day, although I haven’t seen them in person since I was about eight years old. One of them was a girl, D, whose family is originally from Kenya, the other was a boy, A, whose family is originally from Hong Kong - his family owned the Chinese restaurant down the street from my house. They had older siblings like me, looked different from everyone like me, and always stood at the edge of the playground like me. They both went off to private school and left me to fend for myself - sad day. I was too embarrassed to ever tell them I missed them.
Arnika was nervous. Blind dates, as exciting were always nerve racking. She tried to remind herself : ‘It’s not really a blind date. We have met before – even if …
Must have one f*** buddy, she can reach out to any time of the day, night, afternoon! (Note: Availability is super important!) and one intellectual pinup she can practice verbal foreplay with!
I awoke. The room was still dark. The rain drummed against the window panes with a threatening intensity. A confusing warmth engulfed me… a naked softness that I was unused …
words said in silence
points still to be made, left on your fingertips
words that sweep me in your arms
When we were in Canada, The Girl & I went to a baby planning course. Basically the course went over all the options we had - adoption, surrogacy, artificial insemination with a known donor, with an unknown donor, legalities of each option, costs etc etc etc. We also met the children of other Lesbians who were 'graduates' of the course. It was such an amazing experience, listening to the other lesbians talk about what they went through, talking about the pros and cons of the method they chose and above all to see the babies!
‘Should I? Shouldn’t I? Will he? Won’t he?’ defines the chain of thoughts that run through every gay man’s head before messaging a random stranger they think that fits into their description of a “perfect partner” (basis a profile alone) in the big bad world of online dating.
So there we were showcasing our popular traits; Ruswa and her Colgate smile, whereas yours truly was almost ready to dish out her gyaan on how to attract Quality women & Quantity women, depending on what one is running after. (Please Note: Gaysi recruiters are selfless creatures, who stop at nothing to accomplish their goals). Needless to say, in 30 minutes, our prospect was ready to have “Gaysi” tattooed on his forehead.
*Based on dreams
I felt her before I saw her. We collided.
“I do apologise… I …”
“No, it was my fault … I was in the way…”
She took …
Owais is a Bhopal-based author and poet, whose book of Urdu poetry called Sham-e-raah was published in 2002. While the book has the Hindi translations of the poems, here is Amit Julka's translations of the poems in English. The book is several pages long, and we've approached another translator - a blogger if you must know - to translate some more of these poems. So these translations will come up every now and then.
Dosti is a Toronto-based social and support group for South Asian gay, bisexual, questioning and transgender men. Dosti has been around since the mid 90s and has come to mean a number of different things over the years. Dosti is a place where you can meet friends, cruise for guys and explore the community. Every month Dosti has social gatherings that take place in different venues where guys can chat it up with other like minded desi dudes and reconcile the fact they can be both Queer and Desi.
We’d gathered in this tiny AC-ed room, my queer and otherwise friends, engaged in the taxing art of small talk. ‘Can’t do it,’ one of us points out emphatically, ‘my flatmates are,’ significant gap, knowing looks, and then one notch lower, ‘lesbians. And they hate men.’
What I think is… if one is dating then one is definitely in a relationship, whether it is an open or a committed one! And if you are dating someone, is it really right to call yourself single because in reality you are involved emotionally/physically with someone?
Initially, I thought I was being a feminist – given that my initial journey was always cocooned and protective and had many rules of no coming home late, always being escorted and yes, always being given money when I needed. The payoff, I realized, many years later was high. It meant listening to rules somebody else had then set – in return for the protection and the financial backing parents/spouse provided.
My parents, on the other hand, were overjoyed that their daughter found a partner that they wouldn’t have to hide from the Indian community. You’d think him being white, an atheist, and having a kid would be the typical Indian parent’s nightmare, but all that seems like nothing compared to the possibility of me being with a woman… well not completely “nothing”.
Fabulis appears to sit on top of the Facebook framework (it requires a Facebook account to login) and works more like an extended application than a network in itself. I guess this has its advantages since Facebook is an Internet phenomenon now and anybody who is anybody is on it (or is that Twitter, again?).