Yes, My Accent Is Real: and Some Other Things I Haven’t Told You by Kunal Nayyar

accentrealBook Name: Yes, My Accent Is Real: and Some Other Things I Haven’t Told You

Author: Kunal Nayyar

Pages: 272

Genre: Memoir

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Format: Kindle eBook

 

My words: Boy, you never had a dull moment, did you Kunal? A year out of your life is equal to 10 of mine. And we are of the same age! (Oh just believe me!)

I’ll be honest. I bought the book only because I like the character Raj on Big bang (so, that paid off quiet well! Congratulations!)….and also because Kunal is actually funny when he appears on talk shows. And the fact that he is an Indian like I am doesn’t really cut it. Not really. I don’t go buying books written by every Indian author. Or it really did cut it..maybe a little. The point is, I loved the book.

Reading the book was like going through a kaleidoscope of events while randomly choosing some to dig a little deeper, feel the before and after emotions. I like the fact that Kunal has not portrayed the book as a memoir or an inspiring life story. Or the story of an underdog.. nor is it portrayed as a story of a guy who has had to face obstacles and difficult hardships in life to achieve what he has. No. And yet, I liked the book. Very much so. Why? Because of what I take away from the selective excerpts from his life that are presented in this book. It’s the story of just another guy – a common man just like you or me – that is the unique thing about the book and of course his journey towards being a not-so-common man. His life experiences are just like ours and hold your attention till the end like it was you living them; with an extra spice of humour added in just the right proportions. He has included personal stories that you can relate to in the most natural way. The story about his dad in “Dinners with Dad” and the one about his connection with his brother were heart touching.

What I found endearing in Kunal’s story is the process in which he has evolved over time by virtue of his experiences and relationships in life. So essentially, he does not just lay around his stories, the events of his life for the reader to draw conclusions from. He takes amazing initiatives to put forth his
thoughts on the matter then and his thoughts on the matter now. He doesn’t always come across looking good, he’s quick to point out his own shortcomings and how he’s trying to be a better person following that. And that’s all one can vie to be in life – a better person. By pointing out his immature reaction on being constantly rejected for the lead part and how he channelised his inner demons into a ‘carpe diem’ moment just emphasises the evolving part. And one can surely respect someone who
can admit to all the crap that one does in life and moves on by accepting and correcting his way through all that.

Another plus point of the book is that Kunal has a unique way of storytelling interjected with witty one liners which make you crackle as you read. The book does have wisecracks splattered through the pages, but it surely doesn’t make the book a literary achievement in humour writing. But this manner of not forcing the humour or sarcasm into the book worked very well for me. The language used in this book is a simple, down-to-earth with easy narration that just make me feel satisfied that he is not trying to oversell himself. He is just being himself. He is just placing himself as he is all with triumphs and errs. That takes courage. Also, what is courageous is that he has a great self-deprecating sense of humor. It is not very easy to pull off and sometimes can be very off-putting. However, Kunal carries it off with aplomb and comes across as a very evolved person. Behind the character of a guy with selective mutism is actually a person who is kind, warm, romantic, intellectual and sometimes even the boy next door. A boy next door with incredible sensibilities and considerate enough to be a close friend. (In fact, I think he won’t mind one more rakhi to his 19 😉 )

A simple book by a simple guy with a simple message.

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The cloaked sovereign

The following post is in response to the Daily prompt – “A mystery wrapped in an enigma” – Tell us something most people probably don’t know about you.


“Hail Princess Diya!! Hail Princess Diya!!”

“Hail Motherland Elysia!! The saviour is back!!”

“Hail Savior Diya!! Hail Princess Diya!!”

I stood dumbfounded staring at the people of Elysia cheering my name and looking at me with reverent admiration on their faces.

Are these people talking about me? I am….the saviour? the princess? the long lost princess….who was thought to be lost in the red war!!

No! That can’t be! I am not the princess! Nor am I the saviour. I am just a simple urban girl from a town outside of Elysia. What happened was just a co-incidence. But then there was a luminescence thing that happened that killed all those mean villianous gorillas who were attacking the Elysians. And it did seem to be emitted from…ME! How did that happen? Was there someone behind me focusing some powerful poisonous light?

That thought itself was soul shattering, not to say utterly ridiculous.

I must have looked crazy with all these thoughts running inside of me, for I did not even notice everyone around me was kneeling with their heads bowed down. That was when Amor still kneeling in front of me took pity on me and whispered, “Your highness, you need to gesture to make them rise.”

“Whaaaat?”

“Just say..You may rise”

I looked at the people kneeling in front of me, bowing their heads waiting. And it clicked, a little too late. “Y-You may rise”, I croaked finally.

Everyone rose. Someone I had come to know as Siham came to me with tears in his eyes.
“My Princess, we have searched all over for you. You were our only hope for getting the durjans eliminated and restoring Elysia. Where were you Princess, we have waited so long for you!”

“I…I”

I could not dampen the fear and anxiety rising inside of me. How can I make these people believe that I am not who they thought I was. I am not their Princess! I am Abha. Just Abha. Whose parents were not the royal king and queen, but the simple lowly owners of a lowly grocery store in Pomri. The store, which I am supposed to save from the leaders of the durjans, now that I think about it.

Amor cleared his throat and I was brought to the present where all the Elysians were looking at me with expectant eyes. I was about to tell them that there must be some misunderstanding when Amor touched my elbow to get my attention.

“There was a prophecy. The Dom Chiragi or the powerful luminescence will destroy the durjans and save this land. She will be the saviour, and the lost princess Diya of Elysia. She will have a luminant band of light inside her right wrist.”

I consciously touched my right wrist. How did he know about that?!

“I think you now see that this may be true. You are the Princess Diya of Elysia.”

“No!” I cried. This can’t be happening. The future of all these people and Elysia ..in my hands? or rather my right wrist?! This was getting even more bizarre.

“Yes you are! Look, I know this is huge. It will take some time to sink in. I have been with you for all this time and I am ashamed to say that I didn’t realise…” He stopped talking. He had a melancholy expression on his face like he is thinking whether me being a Princess was a good thing or bad. He sighed a long sigh finally.

“For now, why don’t we just reach the castle? You have your parents’ store to save, too. And we’ll see how things go from there.”

He looked at me, his eyes searching mine, waiting for affirmation.

I just nodded. “But only to save my parents’ store!”

“As you say, my Princess!”

“I am not your Princess!!”

His lip twitched. “Ok my Princess.”

“Ughhh!!” I huffed and started towards the back of the caravan. Everyone kneeled again and the enchantments began. I turned and looked at them with unbelieving eyes. And saw Amor, still kneeling, but his shoulders giving away his laughter.

Great! That’s just great! Now I have to deal with all this, too?!


What??? Why are you guys so confused? This is true! This is an event in my life that people don’t know about….?

Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh….I think it was supposed to be something from this lifetime!! I get it now.

O well! There’s still another life to write about something from this lifetime 😉 😛

Between the Sand and the Sea

FIVE PHOTOS FIVE STORIES: Day 5

Hi All! I would like to apologize to Umber for not completing the challenge consistently and on time. I have been missing in action for a few days since the viruses of common cold have found a comfortable shelter within me from quite a few days. Nevertheless, here is the last poem for the last day of the challenge. Lastly but not the least, I am honoured to be invited to join the FIVE PHOTOS FIVE STORIES challenge by Umber from The Summer Rain and I thank her for the kind gesture.

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Let yourself go,
Oh dear grainy friend,
Just sway away with me,
I’ll flow you to the other end

It’s an euphoria, O salty amigo!
It’s dancing all the way,
It’s letting my fears go,
Flowing with you all the way…

Let me take you on a thrill ride
Just on the banks, soft sand, you stay
I’ll rush in gushing tides
And pull you fast in all the way

The tidal games you play,
And the gurgling waves you make,
Makes me laugh and cry,
And me, to a different high you take…

Oh mighty Ocean,
Stretching far and wide
You hold me in, the smallest part of you,
But I carry you whole, within me you reside

You may carry me whole, in you I reside,
But I take you with me all the way
To be with you through the tide,
I make you in the bottom lay…

    ~sheetal@dreamingwordz.wordpress.com

माझ्या गोब्ल्या गुब्बुटल्या…..

इवल्या इवल्या नाकावरती,
‘लागोबाचा’ शेंडा..अन,
‘गोब्ल्या गोब्ल्या’ गालामध्ये,
रुस्व्याचा फुग्गा..

ए, रागावलेल्या गोबऱ्या गुब्बुटल्या,
माझ्यावरचा राग जरा सोडशील का?
तुझी ‘श्वल्ग-नगली’ सोडून कधी,
मला ही मिठी तू मारशील का?

परी-ताईशी तू रोजच खेळतोस,
कधीतरी आईशीही खेळशील का?
लुटू लुटू पळून, खळ खळ खिद्ळून,
हळूच येउन घट्ट बिलगशील का?

खूप खूप खेळू, मज्जा मज्जा करू,
आईच्या हाताने पोटभर खाऊ,
चिऊताईचा घास भरवताना,
आईकडे गोड हसून बघशील का?

तुझी नी माझी जोडी घट्ट घट्ट करू,
बागेमध्ये जाऊ अन हत्तीवरती फिरू,
बाबाला घोडा करून टिकटाक टिकटाक करू,
गोल चक्कर झाली कि गोड पापा देऊ..

बाबाला रोज स्वप्नात भेटतोस बरा,
माझ्याशीच बरा तुझा अबोला का?
बाबाच दर्पण आहेस कि माझी तू छबी,
हे तरी मला कधी कळू देशील का?

झोपेची परी जेव्हा पापणीवर निजेल,
झोपायला मग मऊ कुशी लागेल,
तेव्हा तरी तुला आईची आठवण येईल का?
तेव्हा तरी, सांग ना, साद घालशील का?

                         ~शीतल @ dreamingwordz.wordpress.com

Invisible

FIVE PHOTOS FIVE STORIES: Day 4

I am honoured to be invited to join the FIVE PHOTOS FIVE STORIES challenge and I thank Umber from The Summer Rain for the kind gesture.

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Falling…disintegrating…melting
Being one with the world..
Being a part of the universe..
Or the universe in an atomic world…

To live in the eyes
To see never-seen colors and shapes,
To be the resonating drum in the ears
To hear never-heard sounds,

Just lie within the darkness,
Merging into the unknown oblivion
Or be the lamp in a sunny courtyard
Undetectable, whether off or on

To be the eyes of an eagle,
To be the treacherous slope of a mountain;
To be the moon-influenced crest of a wave,
To be a tree and read the memory of the leaves;

To live as an invisible parasite,
And feel much more than know;
To be an invisible soul pervading reality,
To hear and to whisper to another invisible soul…..


The Five Photos, Five Stories Challenge rules require you to post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo.  It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or simply a short paragraph – it’s entirely up to you. 

Then each day, nominate another blogger to carry on this challenge.

Accepting the challenge is entirely up to the person nominated, Today I invite Prajakta from An Armchair Perfectionist  to join the challenge. 

Image Source: Google Images

                                                                                             ~sheetal@dreamingwordz.wordpress.com

Why art thou, bully?

FIVE PHOTOS FIVE STORIES: Day 3

I am honoured to be invited to join the FIVE PHOTOS FIVE STORIES challenge and I thank Umber from The Summer Rain for the kind gesture.

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I am just a silly little girl
A little more troubled than it seems
I just want to play & laugh
Be happy in my world of dreams

O brother, you sneer at me,
You put the fear in me
You point & laugh at me
You jeer at me and you pinch me

You mock me & block me,
You do it everyday
You tease me and don’t love me
It saddens me in every way

O wretched cousins! Why do you do this to me?
I don’t know why you are jealous of me..
While born with a fair skin was no fault of me,
You are all perfect, can’t you see?

Why do you hate me so much?
You snatch my dresses and my dolls,
You are no sisters of mine, you tell lies about me, 
And laugh on your bullyish triumphs down the halls

You make me sad, you make me weak
And no, Mommy, it’s not harmless fun,
You make me doubt me, lose faith in me
O Mommy, it’s harmful and definitely no fun!

O dear friends, are you really?
Why are you so jealous of me?
I maybe fair but you are ones I like
With mesmerising smiles, eyes of beauty

You guys call me fat, and I am not so
But I didn’t know that coz I believed you all the way
I put on a fake smile and pretend I’m okay
But your words hurt all the way

The words, those hurtful words
And all the wretched bullying
Is the reason I lost faith in me, I doubt me..
The bullies snatched my silver lining….


The Five Photos, Five Stories Challenge rules require you to post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo.  It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or simply a short paragraph – it’s entirely up to you. 

Then each day, nominate another blogger to carry on this challenge.

Accepting the challenge is entirely up to the person nominated, Today I invite Trinetra  to join the challenge. 

Image Source: Pinterest

                                                                                             ~sheetal@dreamingwordz.wordpress.com

Will you love me, O Mommy? O Daddy?

FIVE PHOTOS FIVE STORIES: Day 2

I am honoured to be invited to join the FIVE PHOTOS FIVE STORIES challenge and I thank Umber from The Summer Rain for this.

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Oh Momma! You made my dolly a beautiful new dress!!
It’s pink and satin and just full of lace…
Oh Momma! Why can’t we be just like this?
Happy, cheerful & laughing through the bliss?

Oh Daddy, when you hold me,
I feel like the princess I cannot be
When I hold you tight and close my eyes,
There’s no place I would rather be

We have such fun, just us two,
Ain’t so Momma? And Daddy, too?
But why can’t you two play nicely,
Like each of you play with me?

Please, oh Daddy, please
Don’t yell at Mommy, I say please
Smile at Daddy, hug him back
Please Mommy, please don’t fight back!

I come to you and between you, I sit
So that you may stop the fight..
You see, I am scared, Daddy and Mommy
Can’t you stop and just look at me?

I thought…I went into a long sleep
And went to that place where God keeps,
His favourite people like Granny….
……When you hit Mommy, Oh Daddy!

I am here alone, and sad…and also hungry
Away from the fighting, on my swing on the tree
The swing you built with love for me Daddy…
But I don’t think you both love me now, you see?

Mommy won’t be mad if Daddy didn’t forget my recital
Daddy won’t be mad if Mommy let me fall from my bicycle
I don’t want to sing, nor on a cycle I want to be
I just want the long sleep and be with dear Granny…

But if I get back to you,
And the flowers & birds & dolls & swings,
I’ll bring back lots of love from Granny
And I’ll also get sweet watery licks from Roxy

But will you promise to build me a tree-house,
O Daddy? For my Dolly, make a skirt & a blouse,
O Mommy? Not fight, won’t you two?
And love me just a little sweet and true?


The Five Photos, Five Stories Challenge rules require you to post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo.  It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or simply a short paragraph – it’s entirely up to you. 

Then each day, nominate another blogger to carry on this challenge.

Accepting the challenge is entirely up to the person nominated, Today I invite Kavzz at The Elusive Minds to join the challenge. 

Image Source: NBC News

                                                                                             ~sheetal@dreamingwordz.wordpress.com