A minor apology - I’ve been told that this blog is a pain in the ass to read because the posts are a tad long. Going through the archive, I do somewhat agree with that. I’m not known to be verbose or a chatterbox, but longwindeddrafting* is something that’s second nature to a lawyer, as are disclaimers.

*Dear Ms. Firstname Lastname, are you still stalking this blog? Please tell me you are. It makes me feel loved and wanted and warm.

So, I will make an effort to keep stuff short and simple from now on, but no promises, yeah? Sometimes the need to blurt out inordinate amounts of venom exceeds the need to be loyal to the Plain English Movement.

Having said that, this post will be one of those longish ones, though only because I’ve had a rough week at work, and haven’t gotten around to posting on a daily basis. But I have, diligently, been taking notes…at home, in court, in conferences and out in the streets. I read Neil Gaiman’s Smoke and Mirrors several months ago, and this quote from the book keeps egging me on to scribble, doodle and blog when I should be wheedling before judges, marking-up agreements, and indulging myself in other lawyer crap*:

“Writing is flying in dreams.
When you remember. When you can. When it works.
It’s that easy.”

*And yet, I still love my job.

(Yeah, yeah. I know you’re probably muttering “Get on with it, fuckface”)

Le tatouage – The past week’s been largely trouble free as far as my new tattoo goes. I was warned by other tattoo-toting humanoids that the artwork will sit quietly for the first couple of days, and will then mount a sneak attack, of gargantuan proportions, on my nerve-endings. I was advised to keep the tattoo dry, not to scratch the scabs, and stay away from sunlight. I armed myself with pain-killers, antibiotic cream and Vaseline, and grit my teeth against the pain and irritation to come…..which never really turned up. The scabs formed by the middle of D-Day+1, and have mostly come off now (on D-Day+7). There was some burning, and a bit of itching, but all-in-all, I’ve dealt with shaving cuts that hurt more. If any of you lot reading this want to get inked, but are afraid of the pain, then you have nothing to fear but fear itself. Take my word for it, it doesn’t hurt all that much.

If you’ve gotten the tattoo guy to bandage the tattoo, then rid yourself of the bandage within a couple of (or, at the most, a few) hours. I kept the bandage on overnight. BIG MISTAKE! When I took it off the next morning, a bit of the ink came off with the damn thing, leaving me with a not-as-black-as-I-expected tattoo. But it’s not too much of a headache, really. I can always go back later for a retouching. Also, avoid getting tattooed in sensitive areas like the inner arms and inner thighs, especially if you’re of a healthy build, and have a fair bit of flesh hanging off your arms and legs. Do NOT scratch the scabs when they start to itch. If the itch becomes unbearable, just pat the tattoo a few times.

Getting tattooed is fun (though it can become addictive; I’m already planning my next one). It’s not particularly painful, and you needn’t imbibe large amounts of alcohol to ease the pain. In fact, you should avoid hitting the bottle before and after getting inked. I had a minor scare when the customer before me started spouting blood like a reject from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre casting couch (did I say that? I must be drunk). Turns out that he’d had a few shots before coming in for the tattoo session. It appears that alcohol expands your capillaries, thins your skin AND your blood, which may lead to excessive bleeding during the tattoo session, which is, well, counterproductive. Professional tattoo artists recommend staying away from alcohol for 2-3 days before getting inked, which sounds a bit extreme to me. I’m no expert at this form of art, but I’d say it’s probably safe to avoid alcohol for 6-7 hours before the inking session and for a similar stretch thereafter. Anyhow, that’s enough on tattoos for now. Go figure it out for yourself. For more dos and don’ts on tattoo care, see here.

Le musique nouvelle - Just when I thought the Eastwind Festival was the last word on great new musical talent, I caught up with Swarathma from Bangalore. Was introduced to them just after they’d wrapped up a small photo-shoot with a local newspaper, and my first impression of this bunch was, “Oh no. Not another kurta-band”. However, their kurtas were of an interesting design and their hairdos even more so. The real fun started when they began their set. I’ve seen my share of bands who dabble with the genre ‘Hind-Rock’ but this one was something different. Swarathma’s songs were an odd mix of Indian folk, Dave Mathews’ jive/funk, and shades of blues rock and Carnatic classical (complete with a violinist). Add to that a volatile drummer-percussionist pair, and a lively, witty, stage-act, and you have a band that made a large bunch of ‘metalheads’ (y’know the type – Iron Maiden tshirts, multiple piercings, black nail varnish) dance. Yes, the crowd danced, and clapped, and sang along…even when the songs drifted from Hindi to Kannada.

So, if anyone’s interested in giving Swarathma’s stuff a listen, take a peek at their website. As of now, you can listen to some of their songs through the site (only streams, no downloads), but I’ll surely post a download link for these guys, if I ever come across one.

Les petites vacances – I’m notorious as a lone-wolf traveler, and usually traipse around the countryside on my own, or at the most with one or two close friends. I haven’t taken a vacation with a large group of people since the spring of 2000 (and I didn’t have much of a choice then; it was a college field trip-cum-weekend break. It was fun, nonetheless). It’s not that I hate crowds or am anti-social. I just have a habit of meandering away from the gang, and can spend hours sitting on a rock, staring into space, or taking photographs of curio stores and suchlike. So, when LizardQueen asked me last week if I wanted to join her and some pals on a 3-day road trip, my natural response was, “Nah. I think I’ll just stay put here in Delhi.”

But LizardQueen is an, um, imposing sort of person, and can be most persuasive, as can her pals, MollFlanders, WrittenDown, HighNote, and MissVesta. And so Crowley has been badgered into scuttling away to this hamlet called Ramganga, so that he can be spared the misery of being holed up in his room on Holi. The trip promises swimming (avoidable), fishing (if enough pink nail varnish is available), rock-climbing and trekking (yeah, baby. They don’t call me mountain goat for nothin’), and lions and tigers and bears, oh my! Of course, the indulgence in aforementioned activities by aforementioned persons will be possible only if such persons choose to remain sober and keep their hormones in check, but we shall see.

And just when you though you were done with reading mommy-blogs, we have this. I wonder what led her to this. Can’t be the kids, can it?

5 Scallywags have walked the Plank |:

siropdevanille said...

Hahaahahaha!! mommy blogs! Hhahahahahaha! must have been the kids who drove her insane Im sure!

Oh and I want a tattoo now!! and aye aye to no drinking on the D-day!

You still love your job?!?!

mistercrowley said...

@ Syrup: Yus. Mommy blogs. I love that term :D The web is FULL of them...re: tattoo...go girl..it's mucho fun....
and, yes, boring and dready as it usually is...i i still love my job....but then, nobody said I was quite sane ;)

Anansi said...

So which is the favorite in Smoke and Mirrors so far? Have you read the one about the actress.. Umm no won't spoil it further for you.
Good to see a Gaiman fan!

mistercrowley said...

@ A. Nancy: Very honestly, Smoke and Mirrors, like Fragile Things, was a bit of a let-down...I prefer Gaiman's full-length stuff....but I loved 'Troll Bridge' and the vampire poetry ;)

Rassles said...

"I just have a habit of meandering away from the gang, and can spend hours sitting on a rock, staring into space, or taking photographs of curio stores and suchlike."

It's like you're me. This was my life as a hobo.