Sunita and Mukesh are friends. He’s cynical, from Calcutta, cocky and well-read. She’s clever, curious and amused by him. It’s the 1960s, Delhi University. Fashionable movies play at the art deco cinemas, Nehruvian poshness is stylish, The Beatles are the rage. They meet over a quotation game involving William Shakespeare and whisky. They both realize there’s something special here. They have burning questions, as young people do, about things literary, philosophical, existential, romantic. The answers lie in an endless set of conversations with Sunita over Scotch, Mukesh imagines. Till she thinks America will be the answer, and leaves for a PhD in her search. He follows her. What happens, over the next forty years, is a journey – to carry on that conversation. Across continents, campuses, decades, marriages and life. To find what it is they really want to say. Chaos Theory, as loosely defined in particle physics, talks of two particles that circle around each other but never connect, which exactly describes Sunita and Mukesh’s situation. Their uncertainties translate into an immigrants’ story of intellectual survival. In this exploration of missed connections between the abstract theories of modern physics with the equally abstract emotions of an aging pair of irreverent professors, comic and tragic mix in a search for comfort which remains, at best, ephemeral and fragile.
About the author
Anuvab Pal is an internationally renowned playwright, author, screenwriter, stand-up comic, and columnist for various Indian and international publications. His plays – Chaos Theory, The President is Coming, Fatwa, 1 888 Dial India and The Bureaucrat – have been staged in India and across the world. He has authored the novels 1 888 Dial India (2010) and The President is Coming (2008), and a non-fiction, Disco Dancer: A Comedy in Five Acts (2009). He is screenwriter of The President is Coming (2009) and co-screenwriter of Loins of Punjab (2007). He performs stand-up comedy across India and in London.