Comfortably Numb

Sheila Kumar's Storehouse

Guest column: Patriarchy in the land of matriarchy

Patriarchy in the land of matriarchy Even as Kerala tops the list on the human development, literacy, low infant mortality, high life expectancy indices, it remains at par if not worse than other states in one respect: the disrespect of women. The empowerment of Malayali women has been slowly eroding over the years, and this…

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Guest column: Trust, faith and the coronavirus

The gullible and the cunning, a dangerous cocktail There`s a 2008 song by the ironically named Killers that rather cryptically asks: are we human or are we dancer? I`d like to tweak those words and ask: are we gullible or are we cunning? Well, do look at the evidence I put before you. One idiot…

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Guest column: The grim and the whimsical

The grim and the whimsical exist side by side today To misquote Dickens, it certainly is the worst of times and not so much the best of times. The seemingly interminable banks of dark clouds haven’t drifted off yet, they continue to darken our skies and our lives. Anxiety levels are still peaking, optimism is…

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Guest column: Seeking that elusive silver lining

Desperately seeking that silver lining Just yesterday, a Charlie Mackesy cartoon landed on my Instagram feed. It   featured the now famous little boy, the horse and the dog. The boy  was asking `What`s the best thing you’ve learned about storms?` and the horse answered, `That they end.` In better circumstances, that positive note would have…

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Guest column: This is us

 This is us The basic truth is, we are operating on a twin level of new normal now. And there is a sizeable population which believes that this new normal is perfectly alright, feeds off on the  oftentimes toxic adrenaline released by this new normal,  and has slowly integrated it into the mainstream. Covid-19 is…

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Guest column: Time to create a personal beyul

Time to create a personal beyul Now that the virus is back with us again, and the more sensible among us are all huddled indoors wfh, binge-watching movies and generally giving in to feelings of despair, may I offer a suggestion? Let us shore up our personal beyuls. What is a beyul? The word stands…

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Guest column: Nostalgia, with a Side of Wistfulness

So, I`m no Luddite but neither am I a Stevie Jobs, with a cutting edge understanding of tech change. However,  all those Whatsapp forwarded- many-times clips singing a nostalgic tune about Flit spray cans, bicycle bells and Dalda tins bring forth the merest of smiles, nothing more, in me. Because nostalgia notwithstanding, some things wrought…

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Guest column: The 10 Percent Solution

The ten percent solution I wish to state at the outset that I`m not an employee of the Mari Kondo Foundation, and not in that legendary Sorter`s pay, either. But yes, I am making a case for letting go all that we gather and hold like, forever. Let`s face it, we are a species of…

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Guest column: A Tale of Four Cities

A tale of four cities A quartet of places that   showcases  the best of human resilience. Drubovnik. Plitvice. Budapest. Prague. Places I visited a few months before the pandemic swept over the world and effectively locked us down. While I was rubber-necking as hard as any other tourist, taking in the stunning sights  and  tucking…

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Guest column: Alas, Colour Still Matters

Alas, colour still matters This is the unabridged version. When people are storming the citadels of democracy, when strongmen are making new rules and breaking old ones with impunity, when thousands of famers are out protesting in the cold but their protests seem to fall on obdurately deaf ears, is it reprehensible of me to…

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