These winters of no discontent
In December and January I will not leave Bangalore, for I cannot have enough of this gentle chill in a cocktail with the warm sun, capped by this clean blue sky. The dreariness of the daily commute is somewhat muted, and sitting in the back seat of my car I can laugh at the traffic than rage at it, with music in my ears, which this week has been Metallica and Neil Young and Feist.
And so my thoughts regarding the new posters that are splashed on my path to work are more charitable than they'd have been in another month. Sreeramulu is again elected, and his victory is not a matter of who won, but what won. With him, several things have won again, and the things that are defeated are beaten to near-burial. But I am far from Bellary, and those who elected him took what he gave and gave what he wanted, and they are at peace with each other, and these thoughts of someone like me, for whom politics is no more than a piece for conversation, are a bitching waste of time.
Thinking so, on a morning this week, I decided to join the posters, and welcome with them the triumphant hon'ble re-elected Member of the Legislature to Bangalore. And I quickly realized that this man from Bellary owns Bangalore significantly more than I, and I can no more welcome him than he can tolerate me and the category of the electorate I belong to. So now I see the posters in respectful silence, and I am not at all peeved at myself, or at the world, thanks to this lovely December.
The don's den
With such thoughts regarding the state and strongmen, I watched The Godfather today, Saturday, for the third time in my life. The Godfather died outside in the sun, while playing with his grandson, and with his death Michael was free to take the revenge the Godfather had in a brilliant move put on pause, having pledged with enemy dons that he wouldn't be the first seeker of vengeance. Until the end, in every meeting in his dark study Don Corleone had shown no love for the drugs business, each time he was offered it, whereas he held out a whole lot of love for his family and, among them, the most partial love for Michael. I was moved and inspired by the Godfather, and when he danced with his daughter at her wedding I envied him even, for Don Corleone was so much a man, and such a father, and such a don, and he was so noble in the way he moved and spoke and danced, and in the way he gestured to people with his hands.
How is life in the inner coterie of the Bellary brothers? How moving a movie would their life make? But the brothers aren't the silent type like Corleone, if you consider the shouting they've done in the legislature, and the gross abuses they've traded on the floor of the house. They cannot have a Brando or an Al Pacino playing any of them, even in an Anglicized version. Still, I wonder, how deep does a meeting get in the study of Janardhana Reddy? Would it move my heart, watching the play of long loyalties and the alleged honor among men in his business? Would I draw inspiration from some part of it?
Such wild thoughts! But they say that it is normal for the mind to be choppy on a day like this, when the moon is in eclipse.
On the street before my house, the magnolia are falling. They were a flaming red in November, thick in a canopy over their tree. Now when I step out for a stroll at night they squelch beneath my feet and pull at my soles, like they want me on the ground with them. After I pass the tree the fragrance from my neighbor's sampigé is so sharp, I look to see the smell that has hit my nose. Every day.
The moon has been out and about all week.