Tampons and Agarbattis


Last modified on 22nd March 2018
Tampons and Agarbattis
I'm Tabu and you're my God. Keep reading and I'll tell you why.

Its Tabu Varma in the passport. A middle class brown Indian woman who writes for a living, who writes to be heard, who writes love letters. Yes, Arundhathi likes that kind of cheese. That's her name; I have come to fall in love with it syllable by syllable, just the way I fell for her.

She hates it when I call her Arun. Ram and I do it because we both love it when she rolls her eyes everytime, the way she does! Ram is 11 and has no boundaries. Arundhathi and I, have made it a point that there is nothing that he cannot know or approach us about. He always knew about the adoption, about our sexuality, about everything that Tabu and Arun ever go through.

Last birthday of hers, 7th of June (oh yes I have gotten myself a gemini lady. They say gemini and scorpion women can work wonders and I'd say that's an understatement). This is the thing about me, I keep getting distracted like a dog in an empty road, or like myself in an empty road. And there we go again! So last birthday of hers, it was a shocker for the colleagues, when Ram bought pads and came home. Observing the bewildered look upon their faces, he said "No, that's not my gift, I get this for her all the time. I've made her a painting." We move on with the painting and home made cakes and silent promises to have lesser people for personal occasions. That was Ram's request. He doesn't like most people's company. When we argued that it might not be a good trait, he made his point crystal clear, "Ladies, I do not hate them or judge them, they just bombard me with questions all the time, about you two, about things we do and speak, about everything! And sometimes, I get tired." We all laughed and let it go. People tend to get curious about us.

My new book got published this week and we have been dealing with a lot of controversies. Its named "Scarlet Sanskari". A fictional story revolving around sexual, religious and cultural norms in India. Amongst all the infamous attention, there's a phone call with genuine excitement, "Just read it and absolutely love it! Calls for a celebration, we're coming over tonight."

Our drunk nights with Michael, Azar and Gautham are everyone's favourite. Music, laughter, debates, more booze, more music, more laughter, the nights go on and on. The boys take Ram away to leave us alone only to come back in minutes and knock, "For God's sake, can you guys keep it down?!" Arundhathi is a loud wild tigress in bed. Maybe I am too. But I'm just gonna put the blame on her.

We are a tiny happy family, content with life, learning and living each day with utmost transparency and sincerity. My parents say they named me right. Tabu who touches all things taboo. What do you think? Will it be okay if Tabu was your neighbour? Will you be friends with Tabu? What if Tabu is your sister? Or your daughter?

I'm Tabu and I don't exist. Maybe I can, when all this is alright. Maybe I don't have to be just a fictional character.

I'm Tabu and you are my God.









Photography: Ravi Kumaran





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