Sexy Thing: Understanding Sex and Love Addiction

The first lesson in politics is learned when a growing infant realizes that his or her behavior can exert control over that of his or her parents. The second major political lesson is years later when one experiences the power of sexual attraction and hormones. All the stuff that you learn in the students unions and in working committees of political parties is really about how to subvert things – baby stuff when compared to the power of controlling, dominating, possessing, abusing another – body, mind and often soul.

The politics of sexual attraction and sexual control is commonly unappreciated and rarely spoken about due to the guilt and shame associated with it. How many men would be willing to admit that if there were no social repercussions, they would have not been as controlled as they are? Perhaps not many. Given circumstances, perhaps not even me. But, science says that is how we are. Of course, science is wrong.


Most kids, at least in Indian societies, do not grow up seeing their parents be intimately affectionate towards each other. If they (the parents) are intimately affectionate, it is usually accompanied by a disclaimer – do you have no shame, in front of the kids? Some of us, if not most of us, learned about sex from our peers or from porn, both of which are terribly off, let me assure you. Took me years to unlearn some of the stuff I picked up there, with its due share of heartache and poor self esteem. There was no sex ed in our times, and my parents turned blue if I asked them how one could “plan” for a brother or sister. A large part of the rest of us, sadly, learned by being victims of sexual abuse, usually by close friends or family and sometimes by strangers. The pleasure associated with the act make the process of victimization even more shameful, and most of us grew up with deeply conflicting ideas about sex. Add to that the common interpretation of religious views on sex.

Is it any wonder that we are this messed up as a society about sex? While we try and figure out what a truly effective, rational and compassionate response to the present mess around us now should be, here is a look at what turns sex into a destructive and addictive force instead of a celebrant, life affirming one.

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Hyderabad Bloggers' Meet 2013 - Enabling Change Through Social Media

"The pure lotus flower blooms out of the muddy pond, the fragrant sandalwood grows from the soil, the graceful cherry blossoms come forth from trees, the beautiful Yang Kuei-fei was born of a woman of low station, and the moon rises from behind the mountains to shed light on them. Misfortune comes from one’s mouth and ruins one, but fortune comes from one’s heart and makes one worthy of respect." - New Year's Gosho, ND

The Hyderabad BloggersMeet 2013 started out as an email connect on New Years day among the small group of people who were part of the first meet in June 2012. Over the next three weeks, it turned into a unique social experiment that led up to the event on January 20, 2013 at ITC Kakatiya. The theme was Enabling Change Through Social Media. Details were put up on the social networks five days before the event. It was by invitation only, and the press and media were not invited. In no time, we had more confirmations than we had planned for, and ITC was kind enough to make arrangements to accommodate us all.

Chef Sekar with Pattu (C) and Bhavana
Ashok and his friends - part of the team led by Mr. Kishore who helped us out with the arrangements at the venue.
The staff of ITC were extremely courteous, and when we walked in to the venue, we found the executive chef of the hotel, Chef Sekar, in his work attire, waiting for us. We thought he wanted to discuss the arrangement for refreshments. To our surprise, it turned out that he was a blogger too, and contrary to what one might expect, a social responsibility blogger who has been involved with several social activism movements across the country. He joined us for the entire meeting and shared his valuable insight during the discussions that followed.

Satish Kumar listens as Sekar speaks about his journey as a blogger

The event kicked off with a talk on the bells and whistles of attracting search traffic and page ranking presented by Satish Kumar of CoolPCTips (as well as Director, Maxthon India). The fundamentals of SEO that he shared made us realize that all of us could benefit from keeping small technical details in mind when we go about our blogging work. He also shared how blogging could be a financially lucrative opportunity too. His passion and his expertise came through as he excitedly shared how easy it is to make your page look good to search engine robots. His passion and expertise came through repeatedly during the meeting, and his passion and expertise came through repeatedly during the meeting.


Making Way for the New

In my corporate avatar, may he rest in peace, I could never honor my commitment to the arts because there were way too many things that demanded my attention all the time. I was perpetually busy and all my personal aspiration inevitably found themselves on my "some day" list. I did not realize then that a lot of what I was "attending to" were really very temporal and superficial tasks that did not add true value to my being. However, I am thankful to have those days behind me since they have made me who I am today.

One of the places where I learned a lot about how to be meaningfully productive and pursue my passion was through the writing of +Shankari Sundaram. Shankari is an aspiring novelist and a productivity blogger who I had the good fortune of connecting with at our first Hyderabad Bloggers' Meet in 2012. She juggles homemaking and two young kids and still manages to stay on top of her writing targets. Not surprisingly, her blog is called Oh! I Juggle. It is my honor to share with you this extremely useful guest post that she wrote for Subho's Jejune Diet.


The New Year came and went and is not so new anymore. But, many of us are still thinking about the year gone by. Of dreams that were fulfilled, those that were born and some that had to be buried. In between endings and beginnings is a wonderful time to reflect, rejoice and renew. As soon as reflections are done, thoughts immediately move to the coming year. The future is very interesting that way. There is so much flexibility in it. Since it has not yet happened, the future is spontaneously hopeful. Anything seems possible. Most of us capture that wonderful feeling of promise by immediately drawing up plans, creating a blueprint for our dreams. That is all good. I truly believe in goal setting and targeted action for creating desired results.

I also believe that New Year resolutions are not just a whimsical list of things you think you want to do. After all, the purpose of life is not to clutter our days with incoherent busyness. It is also not to manufacture yardsticks and milestones of performance that we can touch and then show off to the world. Success is such a personal measure of value. It can rarely be defined in universal terms. True, business success is usually measured in financial terms. It is certainly simpler that way. Numbers are a clear measure and it is easy to fall into the trap of measuring success only that way. We instinctively follow similar guidelines to measure success in our professional and personal lives too. There is nothing wrong in wanting to achieve more, pushing ourselves to do that little extra which might make all the difference. Wisdom is to recognize where to put in the extra and where to pull back. Extending and stretching in all directions is not a recipe for contentment.

Announcing the Hyderabad Bloggers Meet: January 2013

Many of you will remember the blast we had during the Hyderabad Bloggers Meet last year. We have been wanting to meet up again, and while most of us have stayed in touch and met in small groups, it felt like time to "do it again." It set out as a discussion a few weeks back, and as things crystallized, it has snowballed into something interesting.

The motivation was to get all of us together and have a good time while adding value to our role as bloggers and changemakers. The challenge was to do it without giving into the demands of consumerism and commerce.  We asked around to find people who would share their experience and wisdom with us on topics that would interest us all. That bit was easy. We then spoke with institutions to see if they would like to help us out for the heck of it, without any overt return on investment. This too was made easy mystically. As part of our work, some of us go out of our way to help others, without really expecting much, if anything, in return. The causes we had created with our work in the past gave us some effects, and we found people coming forward to help us out.

This is a group photo from the event that we managed to take at the last minute after many of the participants had left!

By mid-week we could finalize the speakers' line-up as Satish Kumar on SEO, Anuradha Goyal on Travel Blogging, Shankari Sundaram on Getting Published and Ratnakar Sadasyula on Social Media Activism. In spite of the short notice, we were also able to get The ITC Group as Venue Partners, Maxthon as Technology Partners, Blend Of Tea as Logistics Partners and BigBasket as Giveaway Sponsors. Mystically, it was turning into an event far beyond our imagination. It was as if everything we could have asked for was being arranged for, and then some!!


BigBasket is our Giveaway Sponsor

So here's announcing the meeting of bloggers in and around Hyderabad for sharing best practices and creating a social responsibility platform. The underlying theme for the meeting is the spirit of enabling change through the social media.


ITC Kakatiya is the Venue Partner for this event.


Date: January 20, 2013
Time: 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Venue: ITC Kakatiya Boardroom, Begumpet

Topics being addressed include:
1. SEO Best Practices
2. From Blogging to Getting Published
3. Travel Blogging
4. Social Media Activism.

The meeting will be followed by informal networking. The foodies will probably gravitate towards dinner. A splendid time is guaranteed for all.

A Facebook Event Page has been put up for those who are on our common network. If you cannot access it and would like to participate, please leave a message in the comments. Carpool coordination is taking place on the Facebook Event Page. Please confirm participation. Please be on time. Please bring your own vuvuzela.
Blend of Tea is the Logistics Partner

Body Electric: Tribute to Self

The Kishore Kumar in me beats my Manna Dey hollow on most days. I am the King of the Hill, even when I am the only one in the tournament. More often than not, that is how it is. I am contented and productive by myself. I am yet to know what boredom is, and given the years I have clocked, it seems more and more unlikely I will ever find out. I am a perfectionist and a control freak, and would rather do something myself than risk having to tell someone that it could have been done better. I over-aspire and challenge my limitations as a habit. Sometimes, it tells on the nerves. Why do I do it then? Because that is who and how I am now. Because who and how I am pleases me now.

(c) Sandeep Ingilela of http://singilela.blogspot.in

YOLO. So much to do and so little time. I choose what I will fill my unforgiving minute with, and I am never at a loss. I would rather die trying than never at all. Have I always been this way? Nope. I have had my periods of living cautiously, sticking to the middle of the road, and licking at my regrets. Have I got it figured out? Maybe not. The phenomenal sum of all my mistakes - that's me.

10 Things You Need to Know About Twitter

Srini Chandra is a Bangalore-based writer whose satire I have enjoyed and admired from the time I discovered his blog. His work is incisive, funny and profoundly relevant. He is perhaps better known for his wildly popular book, 3 Lives in Search of Bliss and his collection of short stories, Instant Karma. He also is the funniest and one of the most followed tweeple on my twitter timeline. (News anchors don't count on either funniness or followership). I happened to send him a message a few weeks ago asking whether he would consider writing something for the readers of Subho's Jejune Diet. I was prepared for the kind of god-humored silence that meets many of our prayers. Instead, I received a warm reply, followed by the post you are about to read. Over to Srini.


Sometime around May 2011, I got myself a Twitter account. I logged in and looked around for a bit. The first impression of Twitter was not a good one. Chaos ruled. If you’re a Member of Parliament, you’ll nod with a knowing smile on hearing this.

Back in the day, mad men (and women) roamed on streets muttering to themselves. It seemed that most of them were now on Twitter. It was bedlam. Disorder reigned. Daunted, I retreated to the relative sanity of the real world.

Fast forward to January 2012. In a moment of optimism, the sort that prevails at the onset of a new year, I ventured back. A password reset later, I found that I had 16 followers. This led to minor exhilaration and then confusion. It seemed incredible that these people (even if they were friends), having found me and after knowing that I had tweeted just once (“Hello World”), had found me worthy of following. That was perplexing. Indeed, I found this notion of ‘following’ fascinating. Who should I follow? What did they have to tell me? Did I have anything to tell them? Intrigued, I decided to delve. And when I delve, it’s usually deeper.

Upon cogitation, I set myself the task of getting 1,000 followers by the end of 2012. I figured that if I was able to get there, that would be definitive proof of the Mayan prophecy. And so I began tweeting. Here are a few observations from that journey.

A Close Shave!

I was secretly pleased when the last date for a certain blogging event passed us by, since the missus had written a post that she wanted me to enter for it. The post was not very flattering to me, so I dilly-dallied in the name of being busy with the anti-rape protests and let the last date go past. But as is the fate of all married men, such pleasures are only temporal. The last date got extended and I got bombarded. So, for the sake of family harmony and world peace, here is the post. Please do not read it, do not share it on your networks, and do not vote for it. And please, please, please - do not make the same mistake that I have made – of asking your better half  (strike out) dearest spouse to bare his or her soul on your blog!

*****

When I met you first, you were living in a men’s hostel, and I would not be allowed to come inside. Most days when I would come to pick you up on my bike, you would still not be ready, and I would wait outside. Your room had a back door that led down to the bath, and you would stand on the landing, wearing a towel and shave yourself, hanging your mirror on the window grill. You would use a double-edged safety razor and lather up with a brush and a round of shaving soap. I would be sitting on my bike on the other side of the wall and watch you as you lathered up a second time and carefully ran your razor along the contours of your scarred jaw, and wait as you disappeared down the stairs to wash your face. I actually looked forward to this quiet, voyeuristic and almost erotic experience. I might have never told you this but it was quite a turn on.


gillette sensor excel
 
A couple of years later, we set up home in a two room studio apartment, and though we were still hard up, you graduated to shaving cream and a twin-blade. You would gush after each shave about its swivel head while I would rush to get breakfast ready in time for you to leave for work. On evenings when we would have the energy to go out (yes, there was such a time) you would wait till the last moment and then announce that you wanted to shave. You would point out that it was not a female prerogative to keep the man waiting and then purposely adopt a snail’s pace and explain the nuances of shaving to me as you let the razor glide down your throat, spooning up the lather lovingly and into sensuous mounds. I would sulk and pout, but I loved the clean and smooth look that you would wear when we finally went out. When our cheeks would touch, it was magic. I loved the fact that you wanted to look good and attractive when you would be seen with me.

Your mother used to tell me that you were middle-aged by the time you were in your teens. I realized what she had meant as we moved into our present home three years back, and you showed no interest in doing the place up. Minimalism – that is what you called it. Frugality was your standard response to my choices when we went shopping for furniture or upholstery. There I was all excited to do all the things I had dreamed of, and there you were, a boring bum with a book cover for a face.

The Vista D90 ZX: First Look

My new year started on a pleasant note. I was invited to test drive and review the Vista D90 from Tata Motors thanks to the bloggers’ review initiative of Blog Adda. After a few exploratory calls, the car was dropped off at my place for me to use.

tata indica vista D90
Don't Miss the No Parking sign.For some, there are no rules!

To call the Vista D90 ZX an upgrade on the earlier Vista would be unfair, since other than the body shape and size, almost everything else has got a significant makeover. As a matter of fact, Tata Motors calls it a sedan class car in its promotions. Before I get to how it felt driving it, here is a quick look at what it is made of. Skip the next three paragraphs if you cannot wait or if it doesn't matter. I wouldn't, however.
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