Stream of Unconsciousness by Tara Kaushal

April 2007: Capturing the chaos and craziness of this moment in time with some fun stream-of-consciousness writing.


Tired tired tired tired. Yawning in Yari road. Must leave for work. Will sleep in auto. Auto man will be tempted by mountainous tits. Will be driven to brothel and sold into sex trade. Will live for rest-of-life horrifying about unwashed chaddis left behind due to much postponement and lack-of-time, while having to practice chore-bazaar wala erotica-wale positions.

Ohh… I want Nirula’s Hot Chocolate Fudge now. Now. Well, technically cannot have saliva-inducing kill-with-calories Hot Chocolate Fudge now as am sitting on the pot. But will be in more socially acceptable and receptive position by the time it arrives from Delhi.

Must not fall asleep on pot. Must not fall asleep on pot. Will cause much embarrassment. Office day ahead. Sleep. College project on social impact of porn. Boyfriend. Ummm… boyfriend and pornography. Umm… sex. You know you can sleep when you’re underneath during missionary na? Oh temptation.

Man’s World article submission. College porn project. Regular pays-the-bills part-time job. Many deadlines loom. Much gloom blooms. Sleepless. Many days of much work.

Workday begun. Good morning sun. Eyes unprotected in spite of dark circles like sunglasses. Have glued contacts into protesting eyes. Watchman looked at me as though I’m Frankenstein’s monster. Have realised that my unconditional-love-giving strays are also afraid. Am in auto. Am being stared at as few red and bleary-eyed women work on laptops while in poor-man’s transport. Fear of autowala-selling-big-tits-along-with-me returns. I must stay awake. I must stay awake. Awake. Cake. Bake. Brake. Power Brakes says backside of truck ahead. Need to brake. Need a break. More than I can take. Multiple money-related activities. Literature MA Missing in Action from my Master of Arts. 

Workday is over. Deadline doom. Friday fun? No, none. MA assignment till 2 tonight. At least. With snatches of article writing. Both due Monday. Friday = Fry Day.


What? What? Oh-my-God! Saturday morning! Oh no! Saturday noon! Was meant to be a brief nap at 7 PM. Many alarms were set. Many friends were put on ‘wake-me-up’ duty. Horrible let-downing friends. Betrayals and true colours and all. Oh. Alarm rang. And rang. Many million missed calls. Multiple messages. Oh. Puddle of exhaustion-induced drool on my pillow. Must write MA project. 2500 words at least. Cannot fool brilliant lecturers by spinning a web of confusing words. Ooh. What can I do? ‘Pornography and Sex Studies and Their Impact on Women and the Concept of Female Identity’. Interesting topic. So interesting that my professors will actually read it. Shit.

Must avoid philosophical conversations (arguments/fights) with Catholic mother about the redundancy of religion, and the reasons for my interest in erotica and porn. Must not show her what I’ve written on this article so far (the words ‘mountainous tits’ didn’t go down too well) along with what I’ve written on my porn project so far. Must then learn to activate Super Woman-type protective shield to avoid those killer looks. Must certainly avoid these conversations-that-invariably-turn-into-fights when am sleep deprived, cranky and menopausal. No. Certainly meant PMSing, not menopausal, though don’t know whether there’s a difference. Okay. Back to work.

Am being badgered by mad friends to go out. MAD = Me Alcohol Dependent. Am aware that my popularity stems from being a teetotaller therefore a sober driver. Nonetheless, cannot go. Must stay and work. And I will sleep at the wheel anyway, so, sober or not, I can’t be driver tonight.

Am just wondering… when I die of exhaustion, will someone please put a disclaimer on my body saying, ‘Tara* didn’t really have dark circles that reached her chin.’ Please, please. Anyway, I’m going to bed now.


Surveying progress. Shit. Am done with only 1400 words. Have to spin more yarns to reach submittable 2500 word limit. Love my Mans’ World editor but hate that when he says ‘deadline’, he means he’ll kill me if I don’t deliver. Wonder whether this bit will be edited out. Back to porn project.

Surveying room. More junk food wrappers than you see outside McDonalds. Chips and chocolate and Coke and stuff. Oh weight problems. Also breath that smells like a dead cow. These things are not good for me. Coke-shoke and all. Will just make me fat and dissolve my teeth. Toothless tomorrow. Toothless before my 25th birthday. With dark circles. And overweight. Horribly, diabolically intelligent, but that’s before evil enzymes released from junk food will jelly-fy brain. Oh might as well not study for Masters and stuff as will not have brain to do anything with education. So can technically abandon this college project right now. Oh evil thought. Back to work.

Why? Why? Why is my life like this? Why must I have regular part-time job and freelance jobs and padhai to do? Why can’t all the unders and overs in my life be exchanged. Then I’ll be under-worked and over-paid and under-weight. Must rue over this great philosophical revelation with my eyes closed. Ummm….

I’m going to be repetitive here and say oh my God! Overslept yet again! Oh my God. Ever notice how nap is a short word, sleep is a longer word and oversleep is the longest out of the three. Okay, so I hit the longest one. Now what? Now what? Must focus on the fact that people say I work well under stress. Shanti, shanti, calm down. Okay Tara*, you have about 12 hours left to leave for work—which means 12 hours to sleep, write this article and finish porn project, which I have to print out at work, as it is due straight after. Aaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrgggggggggggggghhhhhhhhhhh. Dead faint.


Okay, it’s four am. 2400+ words done. Include name-shame and all of that and that 2500. Oh thank God. And other thing to do—finish this article. That’s done too. Now for the final thing on my check-off list—sleep. Goodnight.

An edited version of this article appeared in Man's World in April 2007.