Thursday, May 25, 2006

Aap Kataar mein hain

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There are lines for everything in life. Grocery lines, Ration lines, Civil lines, Tan lines, Straight lines, Immigration lines, Fishing lines, Ant lines, Hairlines, Waistlines, Clotheslines, Fashion lines, Credit lines, Pickup lines....

But we are in line. All our life is one big line. And we are all queued up to get to somewhere.

Like We are in line to go abroad. And some people get to the head of the line when they're 14. And some when they're 40. I got to the head of the "foreign-travelling" line when I was 25. Some just make it by default because they are on someone else's arm.

Like we are in line to complete our education. Some of us are jostling for space with others, and frequently, we are pushed out of the line for a year just because we are too busy jawing with someone , or trying to pick up a chick from the line next to us. Or because we fell asleep while standing and all those young kids with a superior intellect pushed us to the back of the class, and elbowed their way through.

Like we are in line to fall in love. And when we reach the counter, and meet the woman we want to fall in love with, we become speechless, and are sent away to the back of the line to work on our communication skills. And this time there might not be the perfect woman at the counter. And because it is too late in life to go to the back of the line once again, you have to make do with the woman that came with the counter, and make it count all your life. Because you were speechless the first time round.

Like we are in line to earn money. And there are so many lines running concurrently to earn money. And we must choose which line we must join. And there are fast moving lines that end up god knows where. And there are slow moving lines. And most of them are extremely slow lines. And all of them end up in a vacation condo with a middle aged secretary smiling like a cheshire cat while the greying middle level executive who was standing in line once upon a time with visions of a home in the country, and a pension, and a dog lying in the porch, is caught with his pants down.

Like there are man-eating lines. Where you could be standing in line, and instead of looking forward, you have to be looking over your shoulder. Because they will slash, and cut, and maim, and gouge, and bomb, and shoot, and spear, and bind you down in ropes of thorns till you have bled the blood of the healthy. Best to avoid those lines.

And there are lines with storm clouds hovering above them. With hypothermia, and cold feet, and no couches, and bloodshot eyes and glazed looks and uncomfortable silences. And there are lines with creeping insects and scurrying rats and gridlocked conversations and frustrations, and aggression, and insults. And racial insults. And inequality. Where you are thrown to the back of the line just because you are ill. Or you have AIDS. Or you are a particular skin color. Or a particular surname. Best to avoid those lines too. Like the plague.

Like we wait in line for fame. Our 15 seconds. Ofcourse, this line is the most ragged and disorganised. Because the counter could open where you are standing. And it could stay there for 10 minutes. Or for 5 hours. Make the most of it.

And 2 weeks ago we are all in line to meet with God. And here there are no shortcuts. Everyone is as important. And it doesn't matter if you are rich or poor or crippled or famous or intelligent or badly dressed. God is always smiling, and he is waiting to meet you. Ofcourse the conversation is tremendously short and it is always one-sided.

And there is a very small, special, select line. For those whose prayers are heard.

I wonder if I am in that line.



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