[First published on 1st Feb’06, edited on 23rd Jun’09]

A lot of music lovers here have been entertained by one talented singer called Adnan Sami. I have liked his songs once in a while too. But I have a problem with his music videos.

Quite a few of his videos feature him with some of the most gorgeous Bollywood actresses in a romantic atmosphere singing and dancing. Now, Mr. Sami is exceptionally overweight. And the actresses are obviously skinny. This fact, about entertainment industry, that beauty of a woman is directly related to her vital statistics and it just doesn’t matter how good is the body of her male counterpart is disturbing. Just try to recall have you ever seen a fat female paired with a greatly worked out male? Why can’t these video directors get real, if you must have Amisha Patel in the video why not put Hrithik with her? Why Adnan? Or better still feature me next to Adnan.

Women is to beauty and men is to money.

I am a survey person. Research and survey is my hobby and I got it from my own tryst with this common line men use until they’ve checked you out, “Beauty is not the main thing“. Oh c’mon, it so is. I used to believe in it earlier and then I was disillusioned. Once, and then again and again. Finally I got tired.

{Flash Back}

I have always thought I am not pretty and certainly not the types men fall for.

Right from that age when we start having petty crushes I knew my life is not gonna be the same as every other girl’s. In those days when I was in my teens we didn’t have this parallel universe called internet. At that time, co-ed schools, tuition classes, morning/evening walks in the neighborhood park, social gatherings, common parties, neighborhood activities, religious get-togethers were the places where teenagers used to meet and express interest in each other. Exchange of sweet gestures, a glance or two or may be a flower. A pink letter written with innocent hand writing saying “I see you on your way to school everyday, can we be friends?” Come Valentine’s day, Rose day, Friendship day and I would see those cute girls hiding flowers, stuff toys, greeting cards in their school bags. I would see their joyful, victorious grin and that smug, “I am one rose up you.”

None of those things ever happened to me. Never!

Presumably for the simple reason that from a distance just by looking at me no one was interested. Of course if one came close to me got to know me I would have been one of the most fascinating person. But then in teens who wants to ‘get to know’ anyway? I knew that and I had accepted the way things were. I was never too lonely to bother about it anyway.

I studied in a girls school and a girls college so all through the best days of my life I only had female friends. (By the way, parents, please don’t do that to your kids) We were a big group of notoriously cool and bindaas girls and I used to be the leader of the pack. I was everybody’s Sanju Boss.

But even before Sanju Boss had her day I used to be a shy introvert kid hugely suffering from inferiority complex. Eventually I realized I wasn’t meant to catch attention easily, I knew I had to be different to be popular. And there started a never-ending eccentricity of being off track. I started breaking out of the usual patterns. I was in 9th standard when Sanju Boss was born, hated by the good students (the winners), liked by the mediocre students (the runner ups) and worshiped by the back benchers (the losers) I was and am the Leper Messiah.

To be more precise there happened an incident to trigger this change, some thing happened, something that changed my life, for good.

There was a neighborhood boy who used to play cricket in our colony ground in RK Puram Sector 1. For the first couple of years that I saw him, I only liked him. Then one day I felt this urge of being with him. I am comfortable doing this. I can go on liking someone without ever telling him. I have liked someone for over 16-17 years now and never told him, its another story. Back to our story, so I decided to tell him about my feelings.

I always played an agony aunt to all my friends. I have helped them write love letters, I used to do the ground work for their romances by giving the guy a call or two, break the ice etc. You know we didn’t have sms and chat those days so these were important steps before you expressed your feelings to anybody. But when it was my turn, I didn’t get any kind of help from my friends. Which is understandable, if they knew how to help they would have helped themselves.

I did what I thought was the best thing to do. I wrote a letter to him, his name was Jaspal, in the best of my handwriting, put it in a pink envelop and posted it to his friend, Ashwini’s address because I didn’t know where Jaspal lived. Ashwini was one our neighbour, song of Bhatia uncle and Jaspal was his friend. It was a small letter the gist of which was, “I like you and would want to be with you. Can you please meet me on so and so date, outside my school, after my school is over?” But it didn’t reveal my identity. For that he had to meet me.

I can still feel the mental unrest that I was going through while I was writing, affixing the stamp, dropping it in the letter box. That evening, standing on my balcony, I saw him reading that letter while his curious friends circled around him. My every heartbeat was like the beating of a drum…every moment was passed in a strange sensation.

Finally, the day came, 7thof Jan. He and Ashwini were there in front of the main gate of my school. Since morning that day I had written him another letter to be handed over when we would have met in person. I can’t remember what all did I write in that, but it was very long, like ran into 3-4 pages, and the main point was “I am ready for a rejection and this is what I have to say to you while you reject…” and I remember it was something very emotional, I had poured my heart out on paper.

Trembling feet, butterflies in stomach, throat drying up, voice weakening, the body still some how managed to walk up to him, extending my hand for a shake with a very wide smile on my face.

I said, “Hi, it was me who wrote that letter calling you here”.

He didn’t shake hands. With both his hands in his pocket he gave me a look of disgust. My hands were still extended and the smile was still there.

I said, “can we be friends?” He didn’t say anything but shook his head in negation.

I pulled my hands back trying to hold on to the smile, which was about to vanish. I held out the letter I had written for him. He wasn’t ready to take it. Ashwini took the letter from me and smiled and I ran away from there and got into my school bus.

I don’t know if rejection feels the same way for all…I was shattered.

For almost a month my life was in ruins. I wanted to hide my face from him and everybody else who was related to him. It felt like I was raped. Humiliation had overpowered me like a python. I never wanted to stay in that locality anymore. I started walking with my heads down while coming back from school. I stopped going out for play in the evenings. I used to cover my face as much as I could with my muffler when he was around hanging out in our colony ground. I lost appetite, I couldn’t concentrate on my studies, all I could do was feel ashamed of myself, hate myself, curse myself for making a self mockery in front of him and his friends.

Gradually I realized he had been decent enough to not make it public, and if at all he did, his friends were decent enough to not give me that look, “Oh there goes the desperate ugly girl”.

It took me about two months to get back to normalcy. Then one day after I had made peace with my heartbreak and humiliation, I wrote an entry in my diary “I would never ever do it again. Romance is stupid, men are stupid. I would try to be a daughter my dad parents would be proud of. No more of this non-sense…I would never ever think of this stupid romance.”

Everything changed after that. For years altogether I never had another crush. I killed that shy girl in me. Girls aren’t supposed to have crushes and fall for guys. It’s them who are supposed to fall for us. “Fall, keep falling, go deep down as deep as you can, never rise up again, I don’t give a damn, got no time for you, you ain’t the only one falling for me and certainly you don’t deserve me.”

But I couldn’t keep my promise. Fell for another guy.

{Flash Back Ends}

Beauty is everything, and it is NOT skin deep. If a man says he doesn’t care about looks, he is bullshitting. I have no count anymore how many men asked me out for a blind date after reading my blog and died on their way back to home from the first date.