Thursday, September 13, 2007

Shakespeare 'n Love

Here's a sign of trouble - I'm running out of things to rave and rant about. lexicomaniac sums this blog as reflections, and to my regret, you (or rather, I) can only reflect so much.

So anyways, this post is a set of little thingies going on....... with me rather than the world at large. So, no thoughtful Being Vir Sanghvi today.

Shakespeare. I've joined this dramatics group that can loosely be defined as a Shakespeare sketch show. We're planning a show with little clips from the Great Playwright's Greatest Plays. A feather in Yours Truly's cap is his bagging a role as Iago in an Othello scene, which should allow me one of those evil fourth wall grins that were creepy in Kaun and The Omen.

The role brought back memories from high and middle school. Of a time before IIT, when English wasn't quite English, but well.... English English. Or rather, ICSE English English. I'm referring of course to English spoken in a semi sing-song high pitched tone with special emphasis on diction and pronounciation, when reciting a poem on stage or acting out a classic drama. Don't get me? Ok, put simply, try reciting this, stressing on each sound:

"In this same interlude it doth befall
That I, one Snout by name, present a wall;
And such a wall, as I would have you think,
That had in it a crannied hole or chink,
Through which the lovers, Pyramus and Thisby,
Did whisper often very secretly"

Yep, that English. It's the one ICSE students pride themselves on in Calcutta or Bangalore. It's about as dead as the literature you enact in it, but it's fun. Coming to IIT, where Hinglish was more the lingua franca, and drama meant Hindi dialogue (and names like Kaal Bhuchandi), I lost touch with it. It's fun to relive it.

It's also a reminder of what kind of person you are. I had to summon IEE when reciting my lines. But the rest of the people in the group (all Americans born and bred) did not. Shakespeare rolls smoothly off their tongues. They doth their ayes and quoth their thees with cunning fluency. I don't. It's kind of a racial thing, but there you are.

I've also joined the Purdue swing dance club. Swing is something you'd see from the black and white films they had in the fifties - think "Eena Meena Deeka". It's informal, more fun and a less strenuous way to meet members of the opposite sex than say, salsa or tango (believe, they are best left to Banderas). Neways, swing is fun. What isn't is the interaction with the opposite sex.

It's been about two weeks since the club began. But wierdly, boys and girls are starting to pair up on a permanent basis already. Partner rotations are starting to feel more unwelcome and the post-class dances are seeing fixed couples, who dance looking all starry-eyed at each other. How in heaven did they go about it? I'm starting to feel left out, like the shithead you see in teen movies looking forlorn and pup-eyed at events like this, when he sees the class hot-chick dance with the jerk-jock. I wish they'd slow down and give me enough time to figure out the tricks of the trade and be smoother and less awkward when in close proximity to girls. Y'know, everyone starting the race at the same position. The science of coupling up. I wish they'd teach that in a course at IIT. The science of coupling. Way more practical than the effect of coupling forces on a tressle centre of gravity - D'you even come across such things in the real world?

Anyway, that's life now. Let's see where Shakespeare and Swing take it.