Author Archives: thoughtsongo

About thoughtsongo

Software Engineer by profession and choice. Love to read ,travel and write. Writing is a hobby ,I dint work on much.But better late than never.

Bonobology-Real Couples Real Conversations

Do you think monogamy is overrated? Or you feel you are the only one who still believes in old school love!! Having relationship troubles or confused about choosing the right person.Check out Bonobology community.

Real couple real conversations 2

Real couples Real conversations by people like you and me.They have a pool of lovely,heartbreaking,funny but true love stories.As they say ,Truth is stranger than fiction.Get some gyaan from  #LoveWisely

image_int_fb Also If you simply have a  story worth telling tell the team or write it yourself. Check out my article here

I’m Sorry

I’m sorry. I couldn’t cover you up completely.But I didn’t knew that was my job,cried Bikini.

I’m sorry. I exposed your legs to the prying eyes,cried shorts. My mistake too, I let them get a view of your midriff,said tank top

I’m sorry,said the skirt,I think the slit was way too long.


I’m sorry,said the jeans ,I shouldn’t have been so tight.


I’m sorry said the top,I let your bra peep out.


I’m sorry said the duppata I shouldn’t have slipped.But believe me it was the wind.


I’m sorry said the saree,I flaunted your curves.


I’m sorry said the burkha. The guy could see your eyes.


I’m sorry said the universe. I let you believe

you were equal.


I’m sorry said the mother I should have killed you while you were in my womb.


I’m sorry said GOD. I’m ashamed I created MEN.

The role of media in promoting patriarchy

 

Late for a meeting, I was frantically looking for a rickshaw. My good fortune and the fourth rickshaw fella I asked said a “YES”.As I entered his rickshaw, I saw a small torn poster-“Space for 3 IDIOTS”. His meter box cover read-“ONGO Accepted”. On my way,  I saw huge billboards of Ranveer Singh promoting a mobile. In my office building, the space between the elevators were used for advertisements. This week it was booked by a realty estate and an online company providing all local services. I mentally noted the name of the company as I was looking for a handyman for my household errands. I was buying medicine and the chemist packed my medicine in a bag of an online food delivery company called “BOX8”. In our day to day life we are bombarded with a variety of advertisements either subtly or directly. Paper, billboards and TV are not the only mediums of advertisements. The online world has opened multiple avenues of advertisements.

Advertisements or media in general ;subconsciously plays with our mind. One might not accept, but it does influence our choices, lifestyle and habits. I read an article once, which said that the world of advertisements put forth a world where looking good, smelling good, having car, going on expensive holidays are the parameters of happiness. They define what we need to be happy. It blocks our own vision of happiness and guile their own product as the ladder to a good life. Over the years’ media has played an important role in promoting patriarchy too.

I came across this podcast-When Women Stopped Coding. It traces the root cause of declining number of females in computers in the 1980’s. Projecting computers as an all men domain being one of the main causes of the declining interest.

This Ted Talk  Bring on the Female SuperHeroes, by Christopher Bell(A media Studies Scholar) explains the role of media in creating gender based toys. Marketing dolls for girls and superheroes for boys. He goes on to explain how there is no lack of female superwoman but there is no merchandize available for the same. How media conglomerates are trying to promote their thoughts and opinions on public.

Closer home, we are bombarded with the daily soaps where the notion of an ideal women (mother, sister, daughter, daughter-in-law) is portrayed as someone who is obedient, sacrificing, homely. Advertisements uses women sexuality to promote their products. Advertisements promote how looking fair boosts confidence and guarantee you a job (Your qualification doesn’t matter). It shows women fall for men who smells good or ride bikes (Compatibility doesn’t matter). Some of the daily soaps and advertisements are ridiculously biased in their depiction of women as dumb, scheming or totally selfless.

Patriarchy is so deeply rooted that even to promote sanitation the ad says- “Daughters and Daughters-in-law shouldn’t go outside, build a toilet inside your house”. Read about it here

To be fair, there have been some path breaking advertisements (I can’t say same about the daily soaps, I feel their level is stopping day by day). However, these advertisements have been few and far(I am not a Kitchen Appliance,RakshaBandhan,Working-Women-New-Ad).

There is an act IRWA(Indecent Representation of Women Act)- An Act to prohibit indecent representation of women through advertisements or in publications, writings, paintings, figures or in any other manner and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.

The fight for gender equality has many demons. The act only targets one of them. With the fight gaining momentum due to increased awareness, it the right time for corporate houses and media to analyse their marketing strategy.

Talent-Does it Really have a Gender

               Entire India rejoiced when Olympic medal was bought home by a gender they did not expect from. Shrieks of joy was heard from every corner of the medal drought nation. This feat would have inspired millions of young girls and their parents to achieve their sporting dreams. Lot of congratulatory messages were shared on all the social media platform. However, amongst the piles of forwards were some misplaced messages on feminism.

“Times are changing, Indian men wins beauty competitions and Indian women win sport medal”.

“A nation obsessed with boys, girls saved the pride of our motherland”

“Only women can love gold”

               Our boys were criticized for losing. Have we thought, does anyone go in the playground with the idea of losing? Girl or boy every sportsperson try to give their best. Our girls winning does not make our boys effort less. A medal won by a girl or boy is equally important for the nation.

               Similarly, downplaying the achievement of our “Mr World” is equally callous. Both have achieved success in their respective field. By making the above statements we are not supporting feminism. Our society has labelled the fields, sports -men domain, beauty-women domain. However, sports (physical strength attributed with male) garners more appreciation than beauty (attributed with women). A female flying high in the men domain is to be encouraged but not when men scale new heights in a female-dominated field. Is this not sexism? Comments like,” Women were not made to do everything that men can. They were made to do everything that men can’t” makes me ponder, who decides what a person can and cannot do?

             I applied a beautiful mehndi during one of the festivities and it was a guy who applied it. There were talks about how now boys will be doing girls work. Why are we gender grouping qualities? I am a girl, but extremely bad at any creative art work. I am not a great cook neither like cooking. All my packing is taken care by my husband. I do not have a great taste in clothes and accessories (my husband and sister are my fashion guides). Does that make me any less of woman and my husband less of a man??I don’t think so. We do what we like and not what we are supposed to or expected to like.

            A girl who is a tomboy (I was one) is accepted to a certain extent by the society. However, the society can’t digest the reverse. Can’t there be boys who do not like sports or gadgets? Can’t there be boys who are sensitive, creative? Can’t there be boys who like dolls rather than superheroes? Why can’t both men and women do what they have interest in rather than doing something they have no interest in.

           We have gender-divided qualities. Exhibiting male qualities is a sign of superiority and female qualities is a sign of weakness. “She is tough like a boy”, is said with pride.” Don’t cry like a girl”, is said with disgust. Worst is any male displaying a feminine streak is labelled as “Gay”. It is time we stop this practice. Any quality worth appreciating is worth appreciating whether imbibed by a girl or a boy. It makes no difference. Period. We are in midst of a revolutionary time. Our girls are groomed to break the glass ceiling. It is time we encourage our boys too to follow their dreams even if it is unconventional. We need to lay foundation of a world where everyone is free to choose based on their will and liking. Nothing is too girly or too boyish. A world where talent is rewarded and respected equally irrespective of the gender that exhibits it.

The post was first published here

Finding MR RIGHT

I am happily married (YES one can be happy and married, it can coexist) for 3 years. So, that implies I have found my “MR RIGHT” or have I?

Flashback:

From 2006-2010- I started my job, relocated cities, was staying away from home and my parents. I was discovering my likes, dislikes. I was experiencing crushes, friendship, feelings for the other sex like any normal 20+-year-old girl. I was building a checklist of the kind of guy I would end up with. Days passed and grew into years, so did my checklist. I never believed in true love or love is forever. I was quite practical and fiercely feminist. I divided the checklist into parts (Must have, Good-to-have)

So, my checklist

1)A guy who loves his bikes. (Must Have…effects of the late-night bike rides with my office group)

2)A guy who doesn’t smoke or do drugs. (Must have…I’m strictly against it)

3)A guy who doesn’t drink initially, then it changed to someone who drinks socially. (Good-to-Have).

4)Humor. (Must have…. Someone who could crack me up)

5)A guy who is not a software engineer. We both can’t be from the same fields. (Good-To-Have, I did not want to end up with someone who could give me advice on how to code, I wanted someone just to listen when I crib)

6)A guy with a creative bent (can play any musical instrument, can write poems) (Good-to-have, Words are the best way to impress me)

7)A guy who loves travelling, reading. (In between Must-have and good-to-have)

8)A guy who is well-updated with politics, sports, current affairs. (Must-have. To keep the conversation flowing always)

9)A guy who can handle my ambition. (Must have. If I think now more than ambition I wanted equality. I did not want to be the one who would compromise, sacrifice. I did not want to mold my dream, desires as per the society.)

Based on this checklist, I started knocking down advances from the opposite sex. I also knocked down my crushes and feelings from developing into liking. I was sure then (or so I thought) about my must-haves.

Finally, I ended up with my husband who can’t ride bikes, loves his drinks, no creative bent whatsoever (extremely bad with choice of words). He used to smoke and quit after we started dating. He is not an avid reader. He likes to travel but our ideas of what to do on a vacation is very different. Looks like I ended up with MR WRONG.As they say LOVE IS BLIND.

He is a mechanical engineer (Thank God for that and I think he does some very fancy things like designing a plant). He is interested in politics, sports, current affairs. He is a people person. He can crack me up (Though I still think my sense of humor is better than his). Most importantly, he is a feminist. I had a good idea that he is quite forward thinking guy, but his strong belief in equality is what I realized only after marriage. Wow, he looks like my MR RIGHT.

Honestly, I no longer care if he is MR RIGHT or MR WRONG. The only thing matters now is that we are happy together despite our flaws and differences.

This blogathon is supported by Woo, The most popular match making app in India with a base of over 3.5 million users.

 

Demonetization- How can we contribute?

 

Our honorable Prime Minister announced that 500 and 1000 notes are no longer legal. The step was taken to tackle terrorism, black money and fake currency. The move was applauded and criticized like a true democracy would. An effort is made by our government. How fruitful will it be, time would tell. But instead of being cynical, there is some way we can contribute to the future of India we all hope for.

First and foremost-

1)Keep calm and take a deep breath-

To all the honest tax-payers out there. Please do not panic. Any cash that you have in this denomination is not worthless. You will get the same worth of money. Yes, you would have to go to the bank and change it. Inconvenience for the already time-pressed People-Agreed. But the old idiom holds true,” No gain without pain”. Also, there is a 50-day time window. And after 30th December you can still exchange at selected RBI counters. So, chill and keep calm.

2)Go cashless-

I see so many people withdrawing money from ATM’s with multiple cards. If you have card, why do you need 8k a day??You can use card at multiple places. Use cash only for day to day activities like buying vegetable, milk or travel. Please use card wherever you can. This is the right to explore all the wallet companies. Open an account hassle free and live in peace. I found some rickshaws , kirana stores ,parlors accepting wallet payments. Cashless economy is the future, make yourself ready for it.

3)Help the needy-

Help your maids, drivers with cash. They need it more than you do. Use your card if you can buy something for them from the card. Give them advanced salary or loan if you can.

4)Educate people around you-

Help clear doubts of your maids,drivers,rickshaw taxi drivers about demonetization. Ask them to open bank accounts if they already don’t have. Introduce them to different ways of going cashless. I spoke to two taxi drivers, one kirana store about using wallets for accepting payments.

5)Don’t believe in rumors-

Gossip mongers have got a lot of food. Carefully review what you hear, read and forward. Do not believe in everything (including news).

Above steps would help in controlling panic and fear. Of course, the implementation and execution of demonetization has come with a set of challenges. Let’s contribute in overcoming these hurdles.

I hope this article knocked sense in some of you. For the rest, if you still queue up out of panic, at least help the elderly and the illiterate in filling up the forms. Remember, you can always be of help even in your worst form.

This post was published here

 

 

Period Stain-To Show or Not?

I came across a lot of posts and some photos, where girls were showing their period blood. Spots on bed sheets or pants. With Captions- “There is no shame, do not shy away”. With no offence to anyone, I don’t think showing blood stains on purpose is a great idea. I squirm when I see blood in the washroom or see a used pad thrown out in open. It is similar when I see stool leftover in the washroom or in open. To be fair, the sight is not pleasant and I have no qualms in accepting that. Why should it be beautiful??It is as natural as passing stool or urine and neither of them look or smell good. We are taught to keep washrooms clean. We potty train our kids and use diapers. We don’t display photos of our or our babies stool and urine (I hope not, I ‘ve seen so many weird updates on Facebook that I won’t be surprised if someone has actually done that).

I would not wear a white pant, if I know my flow is heavy and it can cause stain. To me it is as natural as the other two motions. The way I control my sensation so that it is not displayed for public, on the same lines is my period. As I mentioned in my earlier post, the advertisements idea (of wearing white pants, running) do not resonate with me.

Achievement would be, when we can discuss freely about periods with anyone under the sun. Neither me nor the person I am discussing it with feels uncomfortable about it. When all the myth surrounding the period is broken. When women can freely enter temple, period or no period. When women are not treated as untouchables. When women who suffer from period pain are shown empathy. When boys and girls are, both educated equally about periods.

When this is achieved, the girl won’t feel embarrassed if there is a stain unknowingly. She will simply go change and carry on without any prying or questioning eyes.

“This blogathon is supported by the Maya App, used by 6.5 million women worldwide to take charge of their periods and health.”