Sunday, February 03, 2013

Meeting myself....


When I first started blogging,  I realized that I would need a profile picture.  A conscious decision to blog under a pseudonym , and I came up with Ugich Konitari; which as any Marathi speaking person will tell you, is nothing extraordinary. 

Thanks to the large number languages and dialects spoken in India, most people got curious about the name, and I even had a query asking if it was a Japanese name. I wish I had said yes, just for the sake of excitement, but like Mr G. Washington of the apple tree fame, I could not tell a lie, and explained what the name was.  There was a fine sense of coming down to earth in this, a sense of comfort at having a name which was supremely ordinary.

So when I was planning a profile picture, I thought it should match that sense. Someone who thrived on being who she was, was firmly modern in some ways, but  had her own down-to-earth, slightly old fashioned, striving-to live-in-a modern-world style;  like a cross between Britney Spears and Gangubai.

A well  known blog aggregater even interviewed me once and one of the readers (Solilo, folks will remember her)  , actually asked me what the profile picture meant and I had to clarify that I was quite happy letting my imagination fly on the broom, thank-you, and I was not in competition with Mrs A.  Rai  B. flying first class to London.

Some young folks even hinted that the picture  needed to be changed. But I doggedly refused. And kept flying on the broom.  I even found a quotation to match and put it on my page.  When I gingerly stepped into Facebook a few years later , I did not think twice before using that as my DP.

One of the spin offs of being a blogger was I would see a few photography blogs, the daughter was into photography, and she was inspired to start a photoblog.  She has been visiting local events in Mumbai, like the Ganpati workshops in Parel, and so on, and since last year, the Kala Ghoda Fair, that happens in Jan-Feb of every year.

She went there today with a friend, took several photographs, and of all the myriads of things you can buy there , in the numerous stalls, displays, and crowds, their eyes came upon a clay  figurine  which suddenly looked familiar.  A spirited native Indian lady, in her traditional dress, hair in a practical bun, swinging away with gusto, grinning away , toothily, displaying, if I might say so, a total of 4 teeth. 

Both the girls sensed a bell ringing in their heads. Encouraged by her friend, my daughter decided to purchase the amazing work of art, and lugged it home through a crowded suburban train, to gift it to me.

The similarity with my DP is uncanny. The attitude displayed by the lady in my DP and that on the swing is  absolutely identical. The thrill of flying high with whatever is at hand.  The disdain for size zero, or for that matter size 1. Or even more. Even the mode of dressing follows similar individual preferences.

I don't dress like this, but my mind does.

But there is a certain sense of joyful, carefree aging, in the clay figurine .  The freedom to find her own sense of enjoyment, unhampered by what people think, whether she is appropriately dressed for it or no; because she has  really seen it all,  and been through all that stuff .  She revels in her toothy smile, (in reality , I actually do have more like a toothy'gummy  grin),  its just that here, toothy means 4 teeth !

Maybe a few years from now, I will change my profile picture. On the blog and on FB.

Approaching the seventies, I just might need a more swinging lifestyle.......? 

  


27 comments:

  1. Ah, wait until you are six months away from 80 like me!! A more swinging lifestyle is definitely desirable, believe me!!! Fun post for the day!! Have a great week!!

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  2. Sylvia, Thank you! With all the wonderful sunsets, clouds and beaches that you do, you are the most swingingest blogger I know !

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  3. So you finally met your doppelgänger! Loved the line - I don't dress like this- my mind does! :)

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    1. Shruti, Thank you . (rushes to check out the meaning of doppelganger ......)

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  4. I could so identify with this, Suranga! The minds of the women of that generation does dress like what it feels like, right? And we revel in it too :)

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  5. I really like your profile picture, always have.

    There are women in all generations whose minds dress the way they feel like (mine revels in it too), and I hope there always are.

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  6. That was such a wonderful piece of clay if one could call it that... No actually it is perfectly symbolic of you :) As I have always known you. I saw your pics in a blog adda interview and some indiblogger meets... you never dress like that but I have always picturised the lady on a broom when I think of you ! :D

    Such a happy, carefree, soaring spirit comes through.. :)

    Absolutely the most wonderful gift anyone could ever give you :D

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    1. HW, Thank you ! Yes, some inspired moments like these happen in all our lives. But I was absolutely stunned to see what emerged out of the box when the daughter reached home. Hurrah for the broom and the swing .... :-)

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  7. wow! what a find!!! and though we havent yet met, I can so imagine you like that, swinging happily, with a big grin on your face... with or without that navvari!

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    1. Anuradha, Thank you! Check it out when you visit the KGAF, as I know you will...

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  8. In fact, I have always felt that using such a distinct dp has made you (and your personality and your blog) stand out from the others :-)

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    1. Ashwathy, sometimes you go with a hunch I guess.....

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  9. Haha. Was this mass produced ? If not, maybe the person who created it was inspired by your profile picture. Hats off to someone who in your own words is approaching 70s but still has the spirit of a teenager perhaps?

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    1. Radha, some years still before I hit seventy. But it was nice to see an "older" version of my DP like this !

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  10. Haahaa! Love your spirit, attitude and your DP.

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  11. What a nice coincidence- your daughter finding a clay figurine with the same attitude as your DP!

    So when are you replacing your broom for a swing? Not anytime soon, I hope. Looking forward to more flights of imagination -via the broom- recorded on your blog! :)

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    1. Manju , Thank you ! And yes, I am quite OK with the broom for now .....

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  12. Oh I loved both the avatars...I liked the one on the broom...and this one is too cute and adorable :) I am going to Kala Ghoda hopefully next Saturday..will keep a lookout for such cute things...thank your daughter for this okie :)

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    1. R's Mom, Thank you ! Hope you make it there next Saturday ! I think R will love it ! (For practical R-related useful info, there is a decent loo in the Jehangir Art Gallery .... )

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    2. Me too ... love both the avatars and the spirit behind :)

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  13. Swing away, Ugich aji, and fly high!! I love both the avatars....they truly do personify your spirit!!

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  14. I came across your blog long long ago and thought your name was Japanese. Much later I stumbled on it again and read your description of yourself.

    That clay figurine is nice and so is your profile picture.

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  15. I came across your blog long long ago and thought your name was Japanese. Much later I stumbled on it again and read your description of yourself.

    That clay figurine is nice and so is your profile picture.

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  16. How sweet is that figurine! I have always liked going to the KG festival. They have unique, arty, crafty things. :)

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