November 2017

Cover Art by Riya Nagendra, I Year B.A. English
Quote by Madhuri Lalwani, I Year B.A. English

Editorial 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23

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Brother

-Krishna J Nair, I Year B.A. English
Image Source: Google Images

“Brother do you believe
In an afterlife
Where our souls will both collide
Some great Elysium”
-Bear’s Den, Elysium

We ran together all through our life. Maybe that was why we thought we were so fit for life, so fit to take challenges, face everything; even an alien invasion. Our imagination took care of us everyday as we ran around the world. Running away from spoons that had green peas, running towards dad’s arms at the end of the day, running behind the school bus with our eyes barely open, running away from responsibilities so that we could feel like we were children again. For me, running was the best exercise. And you, my best coach.

 

Now, as they take the bloodstained shoe covered in mud from the river bank and toss it in a plastic bag labelled ‘evidence’ I wonder with whom I was running with all along. Someone I thought was my knight in shining armor removes his treacherous mask as he reveals himself as the guardian of hell’s door. When we were running towards the edge of the cliff, smiling and tossing our hair back and panting, trying to grasp breath while shaking off the cold wind trying to smother us with his sweet little torture, I thought I was having another best day of my life. I swore to myself to enter that chapter in my diary and read it after ten years to feel young and reckless. Well I feel reckless, for I let go of your arm unintentionally, and you took the giant final leap without turning back. I am looking for your charted plans for you always planned anything, and everything.

 

For a second I was staring at my shoe, adoring the knot you made before we began running. I gazed up and saw you standing there at the edge, and I saw another shadow right beside you. I ran towards you, when you ever so gently pushed your leg towards earth to reach out to death. Maybe you hugged him while floating in air. It was not you who hung onto the ledge, it was me. You left me hanging, alone. As you left your final breath at the edge, I inhaled it. Guess you are not gone forever; I am still breathing yours, brother.

Question More

-Kavyashree P, I Year B.A. English

“The world is going to end in 2012.”

“The sun is in the shape of a circle with spokes around it.”

“You’ll get ‘cooties’ if you interact with the opposite sex.”

“Swallowing a watermelon seed will cause a watermelon to grow inside your tummy.”

“Five second rule.”

“Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy are real.”

These are just a few of the myths we believed in while growing up. These were either made up by parents to get their kids to listen to them or older kids trying to have some fun. Either way, the good thing is we now know that they are not true.

We have all drawn our hearts with two simple curves but 8th std Biology taught us something very complicated. As we grew up, a lot of our beliefs were debunked that way. Some of them weren’t nice, like learning that the heart was way more complex than we thought; some were a relief, like not having to pull out every seed from a watermelon before eating it.

But not all such assumptions were easily shaken off. Some of them have had long-lasting impacts on our minds and they influence everything we do and say, even without us being aware of it. One of them being Beauty Standards.

We all are victims of the beauty standards imposed on us by fairy tales. White skin was equated to beauty. The tinier the waistline, the more love you get. And the culprits are not just fairy tales. Even the textbooks we had as kids taught us to be racist. ‘Beauty’ was defined as a white-skinned girl with blonde hair and pink lips. And ‘ugly’ was defined as a tired looking dark-skinned woman. Even in movies, the dark or plump actors were always cast as the funny characters.

These kind of myths are under the process of being debunked, now that progressive thinkers and change-makers have come about. A lot of people are starting to realise that “Beauty comes in all shapes and sizes.” Maybe we spent our childhoods under such delusions and now it is hard to break free from them, but let us work towards changing our mindset so that future generations won’t believe any such myths. Maybe myths are better off when they remain questionable.

M.I.N.E

-Mary Monika, I Year M.A. English

A bottled up voice
A silenced scream
A chained-up soul
A broken human
With no way out
With no way in
Turn to printed ink
Then to pen and ink
The emotions of a decade poured out in words.
How precious, how precious
So don’t you think.
Oh don’t you dare think
You can take it away
You can take them away.
They are mine.
M. I. N. E.
I chain them up. I trap them too
There is no space for you.
There is no space for any of you.

Different Direction

-Arsha Mech Vikraman, I Year B.A. English

Over the years, there have been many boy bands and unfortunately, to the dismay of many teenage hearts, these bands did break up. A good example is the Beatles, where each artist was different and contributed to the music industry in a different way. Similarly, in today’s times, we have the breakup of several bands, and one of them is the popular band ‘One Direction’.

 

While they may not have been great together as a band, they do make fantastic artists individually. Here’s a look at what the artists have forayed into –

 

Liam Payne – Now, he focuses on dance-pop music that attracts all types of teeny-boppers. He might just still remain in the teenage crush phase, after all.

 

Louis Tomlinson- He mostly stuck to his EDM DJs and does collaborative singles with them, along with a few high profile singers such as Bebe Rexha and has achieved moderate amounts of success.

 

Niall Horan- The only one who stuck to an extremely simplistic approach of being a singer/songwriter. Horan hasn’t stopped being himself and that is what has made him successful. His raw originality hasn’t changed at all and that will propel him further in the industry.

 

Harry Styles- Possibly the most stylish one of the five, he embodies old school Mick Jagger and David Bowie. If you’re looking for a classic British rocker with a pop sound, look no further. No one else will give you the feet-stomping music in a good album. His work is a beautiful ode to classic British rock (Bowie and Jagger’s times) with his own personal spin.

 

Zayn Malik- The most anticipated member. Malik has probably made the most R&B music of the five and now focuses on more adult themes in music unlike the teenage themes he used to croon during his boyband days.

Of Changing People And Unchanging Dreams

-Lourdes L, II Year B.Com

There are certain things that never change. For example, I always had trouble beginning something, whether it was my study sessions or writing down this article, I can still see my childhood thoughts and acts seeping into my “almost adult” life. However, when I do sit down and think about it, there has been a major shift in my thought process and understanding of this world. Now, given the random things that life throws at us, it’s only the common perception that we grow and learn through experiences and situations. So, your childhood is that brand new white t-shirt you purchased with so much love and joy. And as years pass on, the stains are going to taint that purity and we learn that things do get dirty.

Sometimes my dad likes to laugh over certain memories of me as a child and this one happened in 2003. I was four years old when my parents had taken me to the doctor for a blood test. Apparently, the doctor had asked me if I was studying and I said, “IAS”. I didn’t say that I was studying in school but this incident makes me think about how I said something that was indeed a huge life option, yet so casually when I didn’t even know what the full form of those three letters meant. That’s just childhood wrapped up in one sentence. After this incident resurfaced in my mind, I went ahead and questioned some of my friends, what they wanted to become as a child. Here are some answers:

“Me and my dad went to Burger King everyday so I wanted to work at Burger King because I thought employees were celebrities.”

“To generally have a good time everyday and be kind to animals.”

“I wanted to be a competitive dancer and win trophies and stuff.”

“I wanted to be the President of India because I wanted to help people.”

You can clearly see that all of these “desires” as a child had no connection to the real world’s financial stability or professionalism for that matter. To them, they want to be the cat in a fish shop; wild, free and filled with whatever their naïve heart wants to own. For instance, I have always wanted to create things. Be it art, stories, music or even cooking, I always wanted to be good at creating. I still do. But the only difference is that the fear of becoming a failure lurks over now, something that was MIA back then. Where did I learn about this though? That whatever I am good at or what I love doing the most may not be “the one” for me? And this failure is always somehow related to making money and acquiring a name in the society.

Something as simple as choosing a different candy just because our friend likes it, or wanting to dress up the same way our sisters or mothers (in some case even brothers) do are examples. Career options aren’t this easy. Our society builds up so much pressure and expects perfection in our decisions. Although I chose B. Com because everyone around me said this was the best option for me, I still stand by my child self. I want to be a creator and today, I am ready to pursue my passion in creating the art I always wanted and this time I will not let the ideology of being a ‘grown-up’ take over my thoughts.

Children’s Day in India may be celebrated to remind us of the welfare towards children, but, it is also important for each of us to celebrate our childhood, our little quirks – maybe an abundance of making puns out of every word you encounter, our innocence and most of all, our ability to express our emotions. Life is indeed short and saying that you’re happy when you are or that you’re feeling low when you’re sad will change your world and your mood. Remember what Barbie said, “Be what you want to be.” Even if your goal in life ranges from being the CEO of a company to being a great mother, you can do whatever your heart desires as long as you don’t forget your roots. With that, let’s make a (virtual) toast to you, your lost dreams and the wonderful child you were and still are.

Foundress Day Celebrations

-Elizabeth P Varsha, III Year B.A. English
Image Source: Stella Maris College website

Stella Maris College’s Foundress Day was celebrated on 18th November with a program at 12 pm in the OAT. All students, staff and sisters of the FMM congregation, came together to offer salutations to Mother Foundress, Blessed Mary of the Passion. The theme was the ‘Relevance of the life, misson and vision of Blessed Mary of the Passion’. The program began with a prayer invoking the blessings of the Almighty and for the grace of Blessed Mary of the Passion. This was followed with a prayer dance by Riya and Ramya of the classical dance club. The western music club sang ‘Mama Passion’ as all Student Union members, the Principal, chief guest for the day Sr. Stella Balthazar and members of the Prayer meeting community walked down the aisle to pay their respects to Sr. Helen de Chappotin with flowers and bowed heads.

Principal, Dr. Sr. Jacintha Quadras and the chief guest, Sr. Stella Balthazar jointly unveiled the portrait of Blessed Mary of the Passion and paid homage. The classical dance club performed a salutation dance known as “Narthanam” and Anitta Jaison, the General Secretary, spoke a few words about the Mother Foundress and the meaning conveyed by the salutary dance about the Mother’s life. Sr. Susan, the secretary welcomed the audience and spoke of the reason why the Stella Maris community has gathered for remembering the foundress, who was the first woman to start a congregation for women.

Sr. Francisco Nirmala introduced the chief guest Sr. Stella who is an alumna of the college and holds a masters degree in Theology. She works for women rights and victims of human trafficking. This reflects the social work done by Blessed Mary of the Passion on helping the poor. Principal Sr. Jacintha Quadras honored the chief guest with a bouquet.

The Chief Guest, Sr. Stella delivered the key note address about how the Mother Foundress continues to inspire people and how she dedicated her life for empowering women. The Mother renounced her easy life in France and came to India for helping and empowering people here. Sr. Stella stressed on Blessed Mary of the Passion being a symbol of womanhood. The western music club, then, sang ‘My end is love’ by Blessed Mary of the Passion. Though Blessed Mary of the Passion was a French woman, she learned Tamil to help the people here better and to honour this, a student from the History department, Krithika, presented a tamil poem reflecting the life of the Mother. As a final salutation, the classical dance club performed ‘Thillana’ and Dr. Shiny John Vairamon of the Chemistry department delivered the Vote of Thanks.

A Day Out

-Gaayathri Sukantha Murugan, I Year B.V.A

I went to the park today. It was full of screaming, noisy children.
Now, as a rule, I hate kids. I can’t stand them. However, walking around, watching them have fun, climbing on monkey bars, swinging on swings, sliding down slides or playing on other things (whose names I’ve grown too old to remember) made me miss my childhood. I remember I used to come to this park as a child, but not much else. I loved the swings; I still do. I miss my carefree days as a child; the days without worries, problems or responsibilities.
The friends you make as a child may not stay forever, but they do make childhood a fond memory for most.
As I walked around the park, I heard balloons. The sound brought to mind the times I’d wake up early on Sunday mornings and run to the gate, just to listen to the balloon seller go by.
When I was a child, I remember making paper boats and letting them go down the tiny streams created by muddy rain water flowing down the street.
I miss when 5P.M. was considered late, and midnight was a time when no one was awake. I miss the times when the biggest worry on my mind was if I’d be on time to school.

I miss the time before my innocence was lost.

The Time Turner

-Nikhita U, I Year B.Com and Divya Mahesh, II Year B.Sc Mathematics

Love – the very word sends people crazy at times, but as we mature, we pull ourselves out of a world we once thought couldn’t get any better, and instead, search for one that’s more promising. Maturity sometimes dawns in the form of questioning the ideal of a perfect someone, and why it means/ meant so much. It also comes with the realization that one’s idea of who they’d like to be with, is bound to change with time.

From just looking at all the kids our age as potential friends to asking ourselves if one of them was something more, we all discover the first stage, what we all called ‘crushes’. The secret conversations with friends, adding that extra oomph to your conventional self, hoping your special someone would notice. Though unreciprocated, crushes ingrain in us the desire to be the best version of ourselves; a head start to self-admiration.

Some of us were probably lucky enough to have our own puppy love story, our ‘first’ significant other. Looking back on all the firsts, the amount of naivety in what we were looking for and what we thought was perfect can baffle anyone; imagining our future with someone, a future completely different from the one we see now, and somehow believing it would all be with someone we now see in a completely different light.

 

As we grow up and out of these, blame it on the more active hormones or the increased exposure to the ‘signs of true love’ articles online, as teens, we end up feeling like we’ve finally found ‘the one’; someone we presume we’d never have to get over, because every cell within is screaming that we are ‘star crossed’. But this time, our approach is more conscious, or at least we convince ourselves that we have ‘thought things out’.

However this first love happens to be a major plot point. If it succeeds, we’d have one hell of a story to tell our kids. But, sadly, the timeline of firsts would cease to exist without heartbreaks. When somebody walks away from your life for the very first time, you invariably concede into your own translucent bubble. It takes several attempts from people to weed you out of your shell and to re-establish the confidence and validation you never realized you lost.  And even when you finally seem to be over it, they don’t cease to be a part of you.

In the end, no love is less, no love is more. It is not measured by looks, by the admirers, by arguments or by differences. It only matters if it is understanding and accepting enough to help you grow together instead of growing apart even when a million uncertainties are thrown your way; if it grows stronger or weaker with time. Time gives legitimacy to its existence. Time is the only true unit of measure.

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