My latest book is The One Who Swam With The Fishes.

"A mesmerizing account of the well-known story of Matsyagandha ... and her transformation from fisherman’s daughter to Satyavati, Santanu’s royal consort and the Mother/Progenitor of the Kuru clan." - Hindustan Times

"Themes of fate, morality and power overlay a subtle and essential feminism to make this lyrical book a must-read. If this is Madhavan’s first book in the Girls from the Mahabharata series, there is much to look forward to in the months to come." - Open Magazine

"A gleeful dollop of Blytonian magic ... Reddy Madhavan is also able to tackle some fairly sensitive subjects such as identity, the love of and karmic ties with parents, adoption, the first sexual encounter, loneliness, and my favourite, feminist rage." - Scroll

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9 February 2005

Brown Girl In The Rain

I know it's a little late in the day for me to be realising this; but writing really is good therapy! Ever since that long, unburdening blog entry of last time, I'm feeling all ready to take on the world again. Even my music has changed from Matchbox 20's Time After Time to Aerosmith's Pink and right now as I type this We Are The World. (C'mon sing with me; *There's a choice we're making, we're saving our own lives, it's true we make a better day, just you and me*). In Class 8 or Class 9, our English textbook (which was in two parts: a textbook and a workbook) was called Interact With English (I always imagined English as some guy, who would pop out of the book and interact with us. Johnny English, aarrrrrrrrrr!)(Okay, I don't know why I made the `Aaarrr' noise. The moment just seemed to call for it). Anyway, back to my original point, Interact With English had the lyrics of We Are The World for us to study and comment on. Our teacher's were ideally supposed to play this song while we read the lyrics, but most of them couldn't be arsed. (Though I do remember, when we were studying slavery in History, our incredible, inspired teacher played Buffalo Soldier. She did that kind of thing. When we did the Russian Revolution she played Rah, Rah Rasputin). Anyway, so I can never listen to these songs without thinking of being stuck in a hot classroom, the boys in the back bench invariably playing some game and us with our socks rolled down and our skirts beginning to wilt in the heat of the afternoon and the fan making whirring noises. English, no matter which school I went to, was always for some reason, the last class of the day. Actually, it probably made more sense. Imagine struggling with Maths when all you want to do is watch your watch moving slowly towards 2.30 when you could finally escape.

Even though I'm not what you would call academically brilliant (in fact, I'm not what ANYONE would call academically brilliant, which is wierd, coz I had all the makings of a nerd. I joined the Science and Nature Club, I often sat in the classroom during lunch break to read and I was part of every Elocution and Recitation club any of my schools had to offer), I loved English. I got English, and so that last period was like my ego salve after leaving my regular classmates to join the remedial maths classes. (Yes, so, I bet you sucked at something too!).

Ooh, last night watched Jerry Maguire on HBO and surprised myself by knowing most of the dialogue (Show me the moneyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!) (You had me at hello) and (You complete me). I love that movie, even though I don't care that much about Tom Cruise (even though he looked absolutely edible in Magnolia) but I think Renee Zellwegger was at her prettiest in that movie. Not always, her eyes are too squinty for my liking, but she had definite moments of beauty you couldn't see in Chicago or Bridget Jones' Diary.

So you see. I am happy. Or at least, halfway there.


  1. u actually sang along to that caco phoney song which was the West standing up for Bangladesh or was it Africa or was it...some other poor little 3rd world country!!!! and that becomes your theme song ...u actually believe we can make the world a better place. Any way, hope that songs changed to something better..even if it is something a wee bit racist like Brown girl in the rain ....we shall not mind!
    I would have liked to "Interact with English" too..except we had a hard cover Wren and Martin which definitely did not have any songs to sing along.And to make matters worse we had a Belgian priest teaching us English.And yes once he did read the diary of anne frank to us.( so there..!!!)
    We never had the luxury of songs accompanying our must have been to Rishi valley or Woodstock kind of school....I was never that lucky!(but I sure did make up in College...!)
    But ......what really,.. i empathise with you is the hands of the clock and the time2:30 to 3:00 was the longest part of the day... the damn hands of the clock never seemed to move. ( But did move on days we had to sit for an exam ..!)
    Talking of Exams....yes i sucked at lots of things..which eventually made me think I did not want to do Maths or Phusics or even Biology or MORAL SCIENCE!!!(we had MORAL SCIENCE.hah!)Imagine ...Bachelor of Moral Science...or Master of Moral Science or even a PHD.....would moral Science be an Arts Subject or a science subject?????? by the way do read the Comments @ the bottom of your Post...and even if u do read one supposed to respond to Comments..(i am knew to the Blogger world)...What ever ...this would be my first reaction to your piece of text.
    And finally........ last night I was watching Condi Rice ( we are on first u see!!!!!! Condi......hah!!!!!)at Science Po,when you had a very good film to watch...i liked Renee Zellwegger though.Have u watched "as Good as it gets"??
    This is becoming like an email.....but ...WTF....let me write what i feel like!!
    and yes!... nice to know that you are "Halfway to Happiness"!(HAH!!!!!!)
    that sounds neat...I should copyright it and use it as a title for a film which i might someday make!
    I am not sure if it is from my own brain and not some catchy phrase I have heard somewhere!!!Have to be careful!!

  2. Hello encee, thanks for the super long comment!
    Okay one by one:
    Yes, I know We Are The World is very phony, etc etc, but I do enjoy the harmony parts, always having been a sucker for "choir" music. And since when is Brown Girl In The Rain racist??? I was talking about myself!
    Nope, not in Rishi Valley or Woodstock, but close enough! :)
    Bachelors of Moral Science might be fun! ;)
    And yeah, LOVED As Good As It Gets!
    Come back soon!

  3. a comment about a comment on a this the begining of a conversation?...
    What part of Brown girl in the rain is not racist???....well brown part..maybe..!
    or, because the girl is brown she could well be from a 3rd world country ..where it rains ..a lot..., so naturally she is poor..she can't afford an she is brown girl in the rain!....(quick send some AID package!)
    But well , if you were talking about yourself then it is a different matter...except r u poor??? and can you afford an umbrella??...
    or maybe you are not brown at all you are a white person who just had a mud bath ..and waiting for the rain to clean you back to your original color.
    or a brahmin brown girl in the rain..or a ...
    ...............why am i writing all this bullshit!
    u can be Purple girl in the rain or Ultramarine girl in the rain...or Burnt sienna girl in the is your wish!
    ......Just dont catch a cold!
    and dont try to kiss upside down Spiderman in the rain..with his mask half open.
    Not Rishi valley, not Woodstock....(must ask my Brother in law..who was lucky enough to go to such schools. about the other schools.)But I am not trying to offend you by finding out who u could be...i already know.......u r the Brown girl in the rain!
    bachelor of Moral science is fun...for sure!
    tagboard has 2 people leaving messages....both r one and the same persons.
    and the qoutes are from a website of Goddard as i mentioned.
    If the French Centre ever gets a Godard retro try and see Breathless...a bout de souffle!.....Jean Paul belmondo is really..."Yum"( and no i am not a closet Gay!)have u seen it before?
    and one of my favourite artists...and no not campbel soup..or Monroe ...I like the Yellow blue and Pink flowers.
    .......a Piegon flew into our balcony last die!my wife and I made a nice shoe box bed for it..packed it with newspapers and foam....( we could not make out what it was suffereing kept dashing its wings and the neck turned in a funny angle.And @ 12'oclock we could not take it to friendicos..)
    it slept quitely whole night ...warm i guess and died early morning after fluttering its wings one last time.When a bird dies, like humans the eye remains open..the white protecting membrane does not cover the eyes...(I forget the name ..though!) and i could not close the eyelids like they do in the films..( do birds have eyelids?)but it felt sad.I believe in destiny...!
    the bird could have been a late night snack for the neighbourhood cat...but it was meant to die in a shoebox.
    Before setting out today I dumped the shoebox in the dumpyard...and now I am feeling shit!
    should I have buried it!
    and now I believe in "Karma". Do you?

  4. FYI: The song is "Brown Girl in the Ring," not "Rain." Look it up.


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