Ex to the Next

Ola Everybody,

Matthew here from the land Down Under!

I know I’ve been M.I.A for the past few weeks. It’s been hella crazy. I wanted to share loads with you, like my experience on the sets of Australia’s biggest talent show, my first time ice-skating, first ever helicopter ride etc. More about that later.

Today as usual I woke up around 9am and headed to the gym. All the while I was thinking about what I should write for my next blog post but couldn’t think of anything. I came home after an hour and logged on to Facebook. And the first thing to appear on my news feed was a status update by my friend about her break-up. That’s officially the third breakup that i know of, since Valentine’s Day. It’s like someone’s cast a hex on couples or something!

Now, we’ve all been through breakups or got our hearts broken at least once in our lives. Some have been fortunate enough to have gone through amicable breakups. Most of us though, have gone through real Nasty ones (notice the capital N).

We might say that each person deals with their breakup in different ways. But au contraire mon frère, I think each of us who’ve been in messy break ups go through exactly the same stages.

The first stage is Denial:  You still hope that it was just another random fight and it’s all going to be okay. No matter how much you know in your head that it was in fact a breakup, your heart says otherwise. You see something that reminds you of him/her and you pray that the next day everything’s going to hunky-dory again. But unfortunately it doesn’t.

The next stage would be Anger: Once you get past the first stage and realize that you have in fact been dumped, you experience extreme anger and bitterness. How could the little ‘bleep-bleep’ treat me like shit after all I’ve done for her/him.  People in this stage look for something or someone to blame (besides the one who dumped them) for their situation; most of the time it’s God, fate or even themselves. People in this stage tend be very irritable and snap at everyone even for the slightest of reasons.

The third stage is Depression: After the anger fades, all you’re left is with despair and hopelessness. This by far is the scariest stage because people suffering from depression tend to do things without putting too much thought into it. They act on an impulse and often end up hurting others and themselves even more. They try to find comfort and relief in the worst places.

And finally, Acceptance and Freedom: After going through all the previous stages, one finally comes to terms with the situation. Accepts it for what it is and moves on. At this stage instead of wasting your day in bed listening to Blues, you pick up yourself, dress to kill and walk out that door feeling hopeful again. It isn’t easy getting to this stage and many of us don’t actually think that they can ever get here, but the truth is you can. You just have to stay strong and try (And also be ALIVE; to all those contemplating to take their lives). You start to feel good about yourself again (just as you should every other day, if you ask me) and surround yourself with things/people that make you truly happy. Slowly you being to forget the past and move on with your life and realise that there are plenty of fish in the sea (some damn nice ones too). The next time you happen to have a chance encounter with your ex and their current partner, it doesn’t feel AWKWARD like you thought it would. You don’t feel the pinch. Rather, your ex looks more uncomfortable than you. And once your encounter is over you walk away feeling proud and happy.

Of course, it always helps if you have someone to talk to while you’re going through a bad break up. Now for some reason a lot of my friends find comfort in talking to me about their breakups. I do put in my two cents, regardless of whether they take it or leave it. Sometimes just having someone who’d listen to you can be a huge relief. But even if you don’t find that one person you can confide in, it’s okay. Contrary to what you may think, you can actually go through this by yourself and come out alright. You’ve just got to love yourself enough, to give yourself the chance. Believe that you are a survivor! Trust me; I know what I’m saying. I’ve been through a lot of tough times on my own. I thought I’d crash and burn but I’m still alive and kicking! Of course my methods involved praying too cas I’m a huge believer ( God was my biggest help) But I’ve recently found someone I can confide in ; my very good friend, Anjana (I could tell her just about anything and she’d be all ears).

 

So anyways, that was my analysis of post-breakup related trauma. A lot of what I said comes from my own experience. Everyday I’m learning by listening and talking to people. Just remember if someone doesn’t love you or you don’t love them, there is no point staying together even if it sucks to break up. But always GIVE/GET CLOSURE. You owe that person at least that much. Don’t be a chicken shit! Leaving them hanging and wondering is by far the rudest thing.

Always remember that just because it didn’t click with one person, doesn’t mean that you’re going to end up alone with your thirteen cats! You will find that special someone in your life, but only if you open up and let people in.

Hope I’ve helped some broken hearts tonight. Putting my thoughts on the subject into words has been enlightening in more ways than one for me as well.

Hope you all enjoy the rest of your night and the rest of your life! Till my next post,

Goodnight, sleep tight and don’t let the bed bugs bite.

 

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Love is in the Air !

Happy Valentine’s Day everybody!

The most awaited day of the month has finally arrived!

This is the day when couples go crazy in love with candy hearts, roses, chocolates, cards, balloons, gifts, dinner dates and etc etc…

Then there are the singles (which includes me)! This is possibly one of the most dreaded days for us singles  (Our pride wouldn’t let us admit it though :P) Valentine’s Day is a reminder that some of us don’t have a girlfriend/boyfriend to spend it with. Step-out and you’ll be suffocated with smell of romance in the air lol.

Normally, I would round up my other single friends and go clubbing but since that’s outta the question (believe it or not all of em have dates grrr), this time, I’m gonna be cooped up at home and spend the day with my “loved ones” .
NO, I’m not talking about my sis and jijaji ( they’ve got each other lol). I’m talking about Movies, Music and a hell lotta comfort food!

I’ve already chosen my movies of the day (they’re mostly old Hollywood movies) :

Casablanca
To Kill a Mockingbird
Out of the Past
Seven Year Itch
Roman Holiday

Maybe even some Johnny Depp movies. Oh yeah, Johnny Depp movies too for sure.

Now, I don’t wanna seem “anti-romantic” (cas that’s just petty) so I’m gonna listen all my favourite love songs, which I know will bring a lot of amazing memories.

Ahh and now for the best part! Food! Comfort Food! I began the day with a not-so-healthy breakfast by making some amazing Ambrosia Salad! It was just yummmm, even if I say so myself. Marshmallows, Fruits, Whipped Cream; what’s not to like! Later today i’m gonna stuff myself with cookies, ice-cream and chocolates!! (Damn that just means 3 hours of gym-time tomorrow!) Oh well, you gain some, you gotta lose some!

For those of you who want to try out a healthier approach, you could always spend some quality time with your family, friends or maybe even spend time with those who are in need of someone. It could be at an orphanage or an old-age home or even with that homeless person you see on the street. Even the slightest gestures would make them happy and it will you as well.

Whatever way you decide to spend the day / with whomever you choose to spend it with, make sure you make the best out of it and have an Awesome Valentine’s Day people! 😀

Gotta go have lunch now.

Cheers!

Another legend gone too soon…

Pop Queen Whitney Houston dies at 48.Cause still unknown.

At first,when TMZ reported the news I didn’t believe it. For two reasons a) it’s TMZ. b) Since when did they start getting information before any other media outlet?
But when the death of Ms.Houston was confirmed by ABC and others, I was completely shocked! Singers I’ve grown up listening to are going away one by one; first it was Michael Jackson and now Whitney Houston!

I was introduced to the beautiful voice of Ms.Houston back in 1999. I was in New York at the time and I remember my family and I were driving down to visit my cousins, when the radio started playing “It’s Not Right but it’s Okay”. I found the song quite catchy and I loved the voice singing the song.  Since then, I’ve been a fan of Whitney Houston’s work. I, especially loved her rendition of Dolly Parton’s “I Will Always Love You” which was recorded for the soundtrack of her film,
“The Bodyguard”.

Whitney Houston rose to fame during the 1980’s with hit tracks such as The Greatest Love of All, Saving All My Love For You to her perfect rendition of I Will Always Love You. The singer, who possessed an unbelievably powerful and flawless voice, won a total of six Grammy during her career.

Her success carried her beyond music to movies, such as The BodyGuard and Waiting to exhale.

Once regarded as the golden girl of the music industry, her career started to dwindle as of early 2000 with her constant alcohol and drug problems. Not to mention her tumultuous marriage to singer Bobby Brown.

Although she tried to make a comeback with her 2009 album “I Look To You”, things soon fell apart after a concert on “Good Morning America” went awry. She failed to hit-high notes and left many fans unimpressed.

Whitney Houston has influenced many other pop artists such as Christina Aguilera and Mariah Carey.

 

Although her music will be greatly missed, she will continue to live in many hearts through her wonderful music.

R.I.P Whitney Houston.

Who is really responsible?

It’s been almost 2 months since I’ve been in Australia and I’m having the time of my life! I’ve been to some amazing places, met a lot of fascinating people and have made a few good friends.But ever since I got here, I’ve been bombarded, by people from back home, with questions regarding the issue of racism.  In light of the events that have occurred in the recent past, I couldn’t really blame them for their concern.

Now, enough publicity has already been given to the issue by all sorts of media outlets and I’m not going to repeat the entire story here. Two months is hardly any time for me to form and pass judgements; especially on a highly sensitive subject such as this.
But have I made a few observations? Yes.
Is everyone going to agree with me? Not sure.
Am I going to tell you anytime soon? Yes. Lol.

To begin with there is no denying that many of the attacks were indeed racially motivated. Former premier Jeff Kennett, singer Kamahl, Australian neurosurgeon Dr. Charles Teo, former Australian Medical Association president Dr Mukesh Haikerwal and ex-police commissioner Christine Nixon have all said that racism exists. That shouldn’t come as a surprise, as the twentieth century had glorified in the fact that Australia was a White Man’s Country. In fact “White Australia” was a proud policy of the Australian governments. Although racism has considerably diminished over the last 50 years, it still lingers in some way, shape or form. It is therefore incorrect for Australian politicians to be assuring Indians that racism doesn’t exist at all. But is the entire country to be labelled “unsafe”? Of course not, because even in Melbourne, where most of the attacks took place, a lot of people were unaware of the issue until it was reported in the papers.

Why are “brown guys” targeted?

Most Indians come to Australia to pursue their higher studies; financed by loans and by families keen on sending their kids abroad to seek fortunes for themselves. The word has got around that brown guys – which include Indians, Pakistanis, Bangladeshis, Sri-Lankans and even Middle easterners – are new to the place and unsure of how the system works, which make them perfect targets compared to their white counterparts.  They have phones, laptops and often ready cash from their long-hour jobs. They wouldn’t register a complaint with the impression they have of the Indian police and also in fear of breaching their visa conditions.

This contrasts with students coming from China who have been coming to Australia in huge numbers for the past few decades.

The role of the media:

There are two sides to every story. But to me it seems like one side was completely ignored.

Now, when the alleged incidents had taken place, I was in India. Every media outlet was talking endlessly about the attacks and every newspaper ran articles about it. But being a media student, I’ve learned not to take everything the media throws at you, at face-value. Now that I’m in Aussie land myself, I’ve had the chance to speak to people and understand their perspective.
When I spoke to my Indian friends here, they said that the Indian media had given a lot more hype regarding the issue, than it deserved. And I completely agree. For instance, when an Indian student was bashed in a Melbourne train, the Indian media was more than ready to use the “R” word and splash it across the front pages of every leading newspaper. But when students were bashed up on Delhi Metro, they never made the news. As of late 2008, as many as 71 offenders were fined or punished in one month for crimes ranging from sexually harassing women passengers to bashing and mugging male passengers at night. However none of these were even talked about, let alone make headlines.

I guess the final straw for me was when I read an article two days ago, in the Times of India, where an Indian student in the US, had accused two elite American universities, Harvard and Princeton of racial discrimination in their admission policy. And as usual this made headlines!

Hey kid! Maybe there were students smarter than you with better grades, did you ever think about that?

Racism is a two-way street:

Indians complain about every other nation (UK, Australia, US, Middle-East!!) being racists but let me tell you something, we’re no different.

I was born and raised in Dubai, been to New York, and have been living in India for the past several years now.
I had never witnessed any form of racism growing up in an Arab country, surrounded by a lot of Arab friends. However, I’ve heard a lot many Indians accusing Arabs of being racists, rude, aping the west, difficult to work with etc etc. Just one question, then why not go back to India, for crying out loud? Nobody’s forcing you to stay in a foreign country? Leave if you want to. But no, we want the money, the education, the jobs, and the quality of life that country has to offer whilst continuing to trash-talk them.

Having lived in India for the past 8 years now, I’ve seen a lot more discrimination on the basis of race, class, gender and sexual orientation. Words like “mallus”, “golutis”, “chappatis” and “madrasis” were coined by Indians themselves against people of each state. Why don’t we put a racist tag on that? The “We just use it for harmless fun” argument is both pointless and pathetic.

And let’s not forget the Kerala- TamilNadu issue. These two South Indian states have been at loggerheads regarding the Mullaperiyar Dam, for quite some time now. People in Tamil Nadu have taken to the streets, closing down shops owned by Keralites, bashing them up on the streets etc. And we “preach”, unity in diversity!

Even after all of this, can we honestly claim that we’re any better? No.

Can racism be erased completely from a society?

As much as I hate to admit it, the truth is that racism cannot be completely erased from a society. Traces of it will still be left behind, at least for a while. However, we can definitely make a difference by simple things like creating awareness, integrating with the mainstream culture of the foreign country we live in (in this case Australia) and creating a positive understanding in the minds of the foreigners about our own culture.

 

So this is my perspective on the whole issue. Let me know what you think. And please, I would like it to be civil.

Cheers!

 

Sun and Fun!

Morning everybody,

Hope everyone’s alive and kicking: P

Yesterday I woke up to a relatively sunny morning and the first thought that crept into my mind was to hit the beach!  So around 3:30 in the afternoon, my sis, bro and I decided to head to St.Kilda.
I hadn’t been to St.Kilda before but I had heard a lot about it from a couple of friends. One in particular loves to go there every other day. (Mark, if you’re reading, it’s you :] )

St. Kilda was the third beach I had been to in Melbourne. The previous two were South Melbourne and Frankston. Each one was completely different from the other.

South Melbourne Beach:

South Melbourne beach was quieter with not many water activities. But I found that a lot of people loved to come fishing here.
I also met a group of kids who loved to come here every day, to collect mussels from under water.  This was the perfect beach to go to, if you wanted some alone time or just to stretch your feet and relax.

Frankston Beach:

Frankston on the other hand, had a lot more going on. People enjoyed jet skiing, sailing, parasailing etc. But what attracts a large number of people are the Sand Sculptures. After four spectacular seasons of sand sculptures on the Waterfront, this year the entire sculpting team brought to ‘life’ in meticulous detail the magical world of “Toytopia”.

 

St.Kilda Beach:

What I noticed on reaching St.Kilda beach was that it was bustling with activity. There were people in huge numbers just lying on the beach (getting a tan of course!), groups of blokes enjoying their beer, chicas “attempting” to play beach ball, lovers enjoying their ice-cream cones together etc. The water was calm and cool which made it perfect for some to go skinny-dipping lol. There were the usual water sports too.
The beach also played host to the National Beach Volleyball series, which was a huge crowd-puller!

 


 Overall, for beach lovers like me, Melbourne has a lot to offer 🙂

Till my next post ,remember, Sun and Fun! Cheers

What’s up with “Charlie Brown”?

No, I’m not talking about the cartoon character. I’m referring to Coldplay’s new song “Charlie Brown” from their album Mylo Xyloto. This is one of my favourite songs from the album. But what’s up with the video?

The video which released on Feb 3rd 2012 shows a bunch of teenage kids (‘kids’, because most of ‘em don’t even look old enough to be 16!) busting out a car and driving down to a club, where Coldplay’s performing. The people in the club are wearing Coldplay’s Mylo Xyloto neon bands and havin a mad time.
As if busting out a car wasn’t reckless enough for these kids, they later spray-paint it(someone else’s car mind you!) and light up fireworks in the background.

Now I get that Coldplay wanted to make a video that was different from their usual ones (which are filled with emotions and philosophical dramatics) but I fail to understand what they’re trying to convey in this one? Because all i get is heights of stupidity interspersed with traces of ideas of anarchy.

The only positive thing about the video is that it’s visually catchy! Gotta give them props for that.

Happy birthday Alice Cooper!

Morning everybody! How’s it going? All’s well i hope.

It’s 8:00 am in this side of the world. Just woke up half an hour ago and rolled up the blinds to my balcony. The view outside is amazing.

Let’s begin the day by giving a loud birthday shout out to the one and only Alice Cooper!

“Happy Birthday, Mr. Cooper!”

The American shock rocker who is famous for his stage shows that include electric chairs, guillotine and boa constrictors, turns 64 today!

I still remember the day I was introduced to his music back in my school days. It was at a friend’s house party in Dubai. We were celebrating the first day of our summer holidays with Alice Cooper’s “School’s Out” . Since then I’ve been a major fan.(It’s still one of my favorite Alice Cooper songs)

His taboo-defying lyrics combined with violent theatrics such as simulated executions, chopping of baby dolls brought him in the midst of controversies. A lot of people found him to be weird and ‘vile’. But it did nothing to deter his career. On the contrary, it made him one of the most popular singers of the 70’s (and decades after).

Cooper was born Vincent Damon Furnier, in Detroit, into a devout Christian family. When Furnier turned sixteen, he assembled his band in Phoenix. The band went through a series of name changes, from initially being known as The Earwigs to The Spiders and The Nazz, before choosing their final stage name Alice Cooper. Furnier adopted this stage name as his own. Alice Cooper’s “shock rock” reputation was almost by accident; mainly after “The Chicken Incident”.

After his band broke up in ’74, it seemed that Alice Cooper gradually transitioned towards mainstream entertainment. This was indicated by “Alice Cooper – The Nightmare” a conceptual TV special originally broadcast on April 25th, 1975.

After taking a hiatus in the mid-80s (with his alcohol problem and his albums Flush the Fashion and Special Forces failing to impress) he returned with a bang in 1989 with his 18th studio album ‘Trash’. The album which featured ‘Poison’, Cooper’s first top ten hit since “You and Me” in 1977 was seen as his comeback album.

Throughout the late eighties -and -early nineties, Cooper worked with a lot of prominent artistes such as Guns n’ Roses’  Axl Rose, Slash and Izzy Stradlin. By this time, he had become a cultural icon.

Though his career began to dwindle towards the late nineties, he still continued to inspire many artistes such as the likes of Slipknot, Marilyn Manson and recently Cee Lo Green.

While he mostly shies away from discussing much about his personal life, he has admitted to being an avid golf player and a supporter of George. W. Bush. He has also, of late, been quite vocal about his faith as a Born Again Christian.

Cooper’s latest work was Welcome 2 My Nightmare in which he collaborated with three of the surviving members of the original band, guitarist Michael Bruce, bassist Dennis Dunaway and drummer Neil Smith. The sequel comes 30 years after the original Welcome To My Nightmare. Allmusic gave the album a four out of five star review. He also recently collaborated with singers Slash and Nicole Scherzinger for Baby Can’t Drive (which is a bloody fun track in my opinion. Perfect song for the road lol)

In March 2011, Cooper and his former band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame by Rob Zombie. Well it was about time!

Love him or Hate him, you just can’t ignore him (nor his “Oh My god!” performances).And i can’t wait for another album! Or a live performance! I can settle for either.

Here’s wishing you A Happy 64th Alice Cooper! Have a frikkin awesome one!

Till my next post,

Cheerio mate!