Tuesday, June 30, 2009


As the bus gathered speed, the cadence of the revving engine lulled me into a semi-trance. I clutched the pen and the notepad ready to pounce on the 'fleeting new idea that, like a rabbit, would streak through my conciousness' which, if not jotted down, would sink into oblivion.

Then, spurred by the draught, it came in a gush enveloping me all over. And what came gushing was not a creative idea for an article but a torrent of regurgitated breakfast - bits of idli, vada etc. - from the passenger in front. The co-passengers stared at my face as though it were a menu printed in an embossed hieroglyphic script.

Thus my foray into the first of the three 'B's - bus, bed and bath, supposedly the fertile cradles of creativity according to my new guru - had gone bus-t. And all I had scribbled on the notepad was the opening line of a Manoj Kumar's movie song - Aur nahin bus(!?) aur nahin.

Next, I decided to try out the 'bed' to capture the 'perceptual experiences in the moments before I fell asleep - a fertile semi-sleep state called hypnogogic.' So I slept on the edge of my cot relying on the faithful gravity to wake me up on the brink of slumber. As I passed into hypnogogic state, a gem of an idea - a real smasher - hit me in a flash only to be doused in a trice as the downward progress of my momentarily airborne head was arrested by the floor. I found the hard way that hardest thing about this approach to creativity was - you guessed it right - the floor.

Then I contemplated the last of the three 'B's - the bath, or stretching myself in a bathtub, a contraption I didn't have, and letting the mind wander freely. But the only living mammal that basked in the bath of such variety around our town were, barring the porcine fraternity, the water buffaloes that wallowed in a dirt pond producing, god only knows, what kind creative ideas. Nevertheless, I had known all along that the bathroom (a euphimism for toilet) was truly a fertile(?) milieu where the traffic of creativity peaked during the hour of '(de)congestion.'

Still, I couldn't shake off my guru lock, stock and bathtub. For, recently when I travelled by an intercity night bus that was nearly empty, I made myself a cozy bed on two adjacent seats and slept. Just as I was about to enter the the land of Nod, I was woken up by a steady drip of rainwater from the leaky roof of the bus. And yet, a blend of all the three 'B's - bus, bed and bath - couldn't trigger my dormant muse. Or could it?

Image Courtesy: http://www.uoguelph.ca/

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