The Internet Personified: See that girl, watch that scene
A weekend newsletter on a MONDAY? What is this madness?!?
No, but, I was in Bhubaneswar (which you will not believe how long it took me to learn how to spell. I mean, now I look fucking competent, oh yeah, look at me, I can totally spell Bhubaneswar with ease and elan, just sliding the second "ba" without an "h" because why would there be an "h" haha. DO NOT ask how long it STILL takes me with bloody Kolkata.) (Just misspelled it, looked it up and corrected.) Anyway, Bhubaneswar (HAH. SKILLZ) had a lit fest, because everywhere has a lit fest, but the small town ones are often way more fun than the big cities, because you're all so intimate. In this case, we all literally fit on one long dining table.
My panel was on whether English is really an Indian language, and I had a lot to say, except it became a panel on translation, about which I had nothing to say, so I just sat there jiggling my shoe up and down. In fairness, they were my Alexander McQueen for Puma heels, so THEY had a lot to say even if I didn't. But here's a link to the news story on my discussion. Also here's a picture of my shoes. (I'd been wanting them for a really long time but they cost more than I normally would spend on shoes, but then they FINALLY went on sale last year so I bought them for 50 per cent off. Whee!)
This week in Tacktastic: I stayed at the Mayfair Lagoon hotel which is a trip and a half. Have you ever been to the Salar Jung museum in Hyderabad? Basically, Salar Jung was this rich collector, but he had absolutely zero filtering skills, so the rooms of the museum are filled with the kind of tack beloved by our grandmothers' generation. Rooms filled with clocks, others full of replicas of famous statues, that kind of thing. Mayfair is also a bit like that, some Buddha statues, then you round the corner and see a sheep with braces on his grinning mouth, an anemic Snow White with seven dwarves clustered around her, a genuine vintage plane, a statue of a yakshi watching you pee and so on. Rather like a treasure hunt. But, in addition, really large, spacious rooms.
This week in Wardrobe Decisions: My least favourite part about lit fests is deciding what to wear. At least with the Odisha one, I was there for literally 24 hours, so I just needed to pack a change of clothes, but normally, you have to pack two sets for each day. One to be "seen" in and one for the night parties. It's very stressful, especially since I don't like any of my clothes at the moment. #FirstWorldProblems
This week in Humiliations: Um, so, I decided to get some exercise, because just walking up and down three flights of stairs occasionally is not going to cut it. Remember how last week I said I was trying out dance classes? WELL. First, there was just me and the instructor in this room with a mirror, and then another girl joined us and I looked her up and down, and thought, "Oh, okay, cool, she looks like she's about as incompetent as I am, so I'm good, no crazy dancer types in this session" BUT it turned out she was all grace and light, twirling and moving her arms about and remembering all the bloody steps. AND I had thought this was the sort of dance class you do mostly for the exercise, you know, someone leading and you follow behind them, but it turns out, it was the kind of dance class where they "choreograph" you, which really stresses me out. I couldn't remember a single step, I was out of time and I looked like a flailing orang utan. Plus I could see all my jiggly bits actually jiggle. Seriously. The teacher was also trying to give the other student Bollywood stuff to learn while teaching me hip hop in the same room. Then I was all, "You know, I cannot dance, I am here for fitness reasons only" and he was like, "ANYONE can dance, I have this student and she'd never danced before and now she's a star. Plus she's like waaaaay older than us, she's TWENTY SIX." Silence in room from me, while other student nods encouragingly. If an ancient 26-year-old can learn how to dance, so can you was the general vibe. "Um, you guys," I said, gently, as I always do when broaching my age with people who think I'm younger than I am, "I'm actually, um, thirty five." (Well, not for another month, but semantics.) "Oh," said the instructor, and the other student looks at me with a new This Is An Aunty expression on her face and says, "Maybe you should join the later batch then, that's full of older people." Needless to say, I will not be back. However, tomorrow morning, bright and early, I am going for a SPINNING class at a local gym. Hopefully, it will not also be full of teenagers and I will not have to massage my hips as I desperately try to keep up. (But also somewhat flattering, because, how old did they think I was?)
This week in stuff I wrote: My relationship column on the mystery of open relationships (how do they get them to work?)
This week in air purifiers: Smart Air! K bought me one for my birthday last year, and they are really cheap and effective compared to all the other stuff. There is a wait, because they are overwhelmed a bit, but reliable and amazing.
This week in food and drink: My friend Pragya and I decided to throw a joint dinner party, for which I ordered from High Society Family Restaurant, which sounds dubious, but has excellent Malayali food. All were a great hit--buff fry, Malabar parathas, biryani and a mutton curry which they sent instead of the original veg one I ordered, but which was a successful mix-up at any rate. In Saket, they deliver to all neighbouring areas. And cheap too.
Song of the week: Closer is the Millennial hook up song we've all been looking for. *hums* "We ain't never getting older."
Link list: Jezebel's annual scary story contest is UP and SCARY! Read in the day time. ** Taking the piss out of the usual "my writing day" stories. ** Peter Griffin is doing a great donation drive and the rewards are pretty cool. ** The people you meet on Diwali. ** This Rachel Bloom voting song is hilarious and We Are The World style. ** On working with Arnab back in the day. **
Have a great week, and don't forget to wear your pollution masks!