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Being Soma…

01 Jul

“And that would be, which Soma?”

“Soma Sen, IX A”

“Which Soma Sen from IX A?”

The irate cashier looked up from his cash register. I knew this was coming.

“Soma Sen II !”

“Spell your surname for me, please” …. (‘People and surnames’, I almost heard him thinking aloud)

“Its S-E-N and a Roman II “

Then I pardoned him for not knowing. He was the school’s new cashier. The other old man had kicked the bucket a couple of months ago and being in a Catholic convent school, we dutifully had to attend a prayer meeting with a rare picture of him smiling back at us. It’s elementary. I was Soma number 5 in the motley population of that year’s ninth standard. And Soma Sen II in IX A.

Things seemed to be a little better in College, when I found to my respite that the whole English department belonged to me. No surplus ‘Somas’.

Loved it, till a batch mate smiled sweetly at me at the freshers’ party, “Hi I’m Soma, from Geography. Didn’t quite get your name?”

“Soma, what else!”, I grinned….. what did she expect? A Bonolata Sen or better still Monomohini Sen?  But that day, I could have traded my name for anything as inane….

Cut to a later date. A couple of days into a whirlwind courtship, Adonis announced, “Would you mind if I called you something else? Something but Soma?”

I almost melted. Story book romances are supposed to be made of stuff like this. I swooned. My heart skipped a beat.

Finally, my knight in shining armour was going to rid me of my curse.

“Choose a name you like”, he said.

What? Wait! Wasn’t he supposed to do that? As in already have a name ready? Being so enamoured and all that?

And then, very matter of factly he dropped the clanger, “You see, I didn’t exactly plan to meet, fall in love and marry a girl who shares her name with my brother’s wife.”

The ceaseless exercise of acceding to nomenclature and being one Soma among a multitude gives rise to a frantic desire….   not to be Soma.  Be anything, but Soma.

Yet I continue to be Soma…

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4 responses to “Being Soma…

  1. sharmila

    July 2, 2009 at 1:23 pm

    The end reminded me of
    “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
    By any other name would smell as sweet.”

    Did your Adonis not say so?

     
  2. Swati

    July 4, 2009 at 1:23 pm

    That is so very ‘Soma’…..the one who lives with the name knows…I had only been a mere spectator!

     
  3. lops

    July 7, 2009 at 10:53 am

    At least it’s not a rounded Bengali name that can’t be pronounced and has no confusion about its gender! 🙂

     
  4. manisha lakhe

    July 26, 2009 at 11:48 am

    i could tell you stories about my pathetic name…

     

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