Saturday, December 10, 2011

Love, oh my love!



They say all is fair in love and war but they can never justify how deep a pain it is to have your love within reach and yet be so far away. I am telling her this year. Today, I will. It has been three years since that day I fell in love with her – a day when until that moment my only reason for jubilation had been the fact that the new balcony was wide enough to throw a party and I had been able to find a cozy spot to enjoy the view and festivities from.

One look at her was enough to take my breath away and with a whoosh of the bullying evening breeze I almost came close to losing my lifelights! That’s how beautiful she was. I couldn’t take my eyes off her for the rest of the time I was out there on my balcony, while she was at her's across the road, keeping to herself. It was something that amazed me. I’d always thought girls liked to gang up but she was an enigma.

The glow about her was more golden than the early morning sun, something I haven’t personally experienced because I am mostly a nocturnal guy. My work keeps me up late and I crash still later, but I’ve heard enough to appreciate the beauty of that phenomenon. What attracted me to her was probably the insanely talented way that she carried herself. She was a statement of resolve and strength!

Me? I am just a silly romantic that can't even handle a cold wind! I wanted to reach out to her and make contact but I get to spend very little time out on the balcony when I do and most of it goes into holding my ground and trying to talk myself out of all the nervousness she generates in me. The remaining, I spend just staring at her and sighing. She makes my heart flicker on the brink of existence.

I had my mind made up this year. I prayed very hard to be able to hog the same spot that gave me a clear shot at getting her attention. I hadn’t quite planned on what I would do exactly.

 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It is time. Here I am at my post; one lucky bastard. And there she is, looking impeccably breathtaking like always. There comes the panic. Breathe…in and out… I need the energy. I cant afford to waste it.

A million ‘What if’ questions run through my mind. Time is ebbing away and so is my strength. I’ve got to take a shot before it is too late….what?....what’s happening? No…no..no….no…you cant take me away now! Has it been that long already? I still have some time left…no. I have to tell her….she has to know. Hey! Dang it! She‘s not looking at me. Move it…move it…let me atleast get to the rim of the………


 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The little girl picked up the rest of the tiny earthen lamps off the parapet in the balcony and added them to the plate she was carrying. It had been yet another bright and beautiful festival of lights.

One lamp on her plate was  still glowing feebly, a few drops of oil stagnant inside. Next year buddy, she thought to herself as she tugged at the wick and doused the flame. The glare from a bright electric lamp on the opposite balcony cast a dark shadow as she walked inside.


(This article made it to the December 14th issue of The Hindu, Nxg : http://www.go-nxg.com/?p=11844)  :)


Friday, November 4, 2011

How would you know? - part II



I recognized the expression on his face because I had worn it at the end of the 1st date. He was the one that was bored now and not very hopeful of finding anything to anchor him to the alliance. I wouldn’t blame him because I myself had expected some kind of miracle to happen when I shook his hand for something and even that little bit of physical contact hadn’t stirred up anything in me. Disappointment? Yeah you could say that.

But both of us had been willing to extend our attempt into a third date. More resistance and more confusion. We had set a rule however. The third would be the last. If we didn’t ‘know’ anything by then, we would just part and wish each other the best.

I knew more about him than the first time I had met him. He wasn’t totally repelling. He was likeable. But wasn’t marriage all about sparks and bam and kaboom? Isn’t that how you ‘knew’? Sigh.

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Third date. Maybe it was because both of us were sure this wasn’t going to work, but the mood was a bit more relaxed than it had been earlier. We were bold and ordered foods with more calories than the previous times. We ventured out to joke more and grow nervous again when it was time to move on.

There were huge puddles of water below the sidewalk in front of the coffee house and more all along the way. Recent rains. Even rain, with all the hopes and dreams of romance wasn’t helping. I looked up, sighed and shook my head. The moment was approaching. Even if you expected it, telling a person that they weren’t exactly what you wanted is hard, whichever way you looked at it. After three dates Adhi had definitely earned my respect. But that wasn’t enough to be married was it? Because I would then have to be married to Gandhiji or Nelson Mandela or my high school English teacher. No wait. That was a lady.

‘They are never going to fix these roads’ he said as he judged the size of a puddle and jumped over it with precision, landing on dry road, the puddle now forming a water filled chasm between us. I looked at it readying myself for take off. Flat footwear didn’t  help with calisthenics born out of rainy weather.

‘Wait’  he said. He offered a hand. I fixed him with a glare. A little puddle of water and you think I cant cross it, my look conveyed. ‘You never know. These things are mighty slippery’. I looked at him again not very impressed with the way he was making me out to be sloppy. I sighed and took his hand. Nope. No spark. Maybe I would slip and fall on purpose and he would catch me, I thought. Too much drama and probably honking vehicles asking us to get a room. Just a jump.

I put one foot forward and launched myself into the air briefly for a moment. The pressure of my take off reflected on his hand and he tightened his grip. I landed safe and smug having proven my point at being a master resident of the city. I looked down at my hand, still in his, held tight many seconds after I had made it.

They had all told me I would know.

It wasn’t about the eyes or the way he looked. It wasn’t about what he liked or what he ate. It wasn’t about how much he earned or how much we had in common. It was about his willingness to hold on. To be there. To make a commitment and see it through.

I knew.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 

He still jokes about it. That he had only held on because I was heavy and would’ve pushed him into the water over a skid. But that’s just what he tells anyone that would want to go with his joke. Because its twenty five years today since it happened and he has held my hand through every single puddle on the road and in life after that.

I recall all this because my daughter came into the room a little while ago to sit beside me and ask me the same million dollar question. ‘How will you know ma?’

I smile and tell her, ‘You just do.’

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

How would you know? - My hunt for a husband



How would you know?

I had tried finding a reply to that question from so many sources and the only effect was my growing exhaustion. No one was able to offer me a satisfactory answer. I remained as nervous as I had been the first day that my folks had started dropping hints about an impending groom hunt. At twenty four I was already late in entering the race they said. I couldn’t disagree, with one eye resting on a simple white invitation that requested my presence at a christening ceremony for the tiny little bundle of joy that one of my juniors had recently had. That is how late I was!

How would you know? It was the one question on my mind, different versions of it floating around freely, hampering my thinking process, my workflow, my ability of normal response. It held me at gunpoint through sleepless nights but wouldn't answer itself.

Movies and romance novels don’t help. Things don’t happen that way in reality. Men with a sensitive side and killer eyes don’t just materialize out of thin air. It was getting harder to even have crushes on these on-screen eligibles what with the responsibility of choosing one for good and absolutely real, looming ahead like a ticking timebomb waiting to explode. Adultery in advance, it made me think.

Women sometimes are not the best ones to go to for advise. They can talk to you for hours and make you feel special and mushy but when you finally ask them how you should pick a suitor they are at as complete a loss as you are. I tried asking one male friend the same question and he tried to explain things in relation to choosing a bride and we somehow ended up making sexist jokes but save for a few tears from laughter I was not a bit clearer in mind.

How would you know if this guy could be your husband for the rest of your life, just because your horoscopes put you at an advantage? Big talk. I wasn’t brave enough to remain single for eternity, if that’s even considered something. Practically, I wasn’t brave enough to go out there and find me a man. Why else would I be subjecting my poor lazy self to a ritual that, if the scriptures are right, has been happening since the time of kings that battled each other for just an extra piece of land? Maybe that would work. Maybe we could arrange a battle of wits and strength, I had a wild thought. Not without risking the fact that no one would turn up, I couldn’t help but conclude. Bad idea.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 


There were four of them in the family. Father, mother and two sons. Younger away for an MS and elder sitting there in front of me probably going through the same thought process as I. The horoscopes had declared us a flawless match and recommended we get married immediately and hold on to each other for life, after paying the necessary consultation fee. I didn’t know anything about him. He looked decent and respectable with a moderately good choice in clothing. He had remained silent save for the initial pleasantries.

My folks engaged in jovial discussion while a storm brewed inside me. How could I know? I tried looking into his eyes hoping to maybe find a spark or something. That cute guy on the sitcom had beautiful eyes that made you want to sit next to him and keep staring. Nothing. Just normal eyes. Assisted vision. He wore glasses.

Maybe something from his posture. I summoned all information on etiquette and body language I had gotten off Competition Success Review titles  long ago. Legs crossed. Palm folded over knees. Back straight. He was ready for an interview. Good posture if he were auditioning for a lead role. No clue there either.

He had a nice smile  I had noted, but what about his sense of humor? I wanted to test if my jokes would fall flat with him like it did with my dad. How could I? His mother brought up the lifeline. 'Would you like to speak with him in private' she asked. I jumped at the chance and was mildly satisfied that he did too.

We spent five minutes staring into the distant view from our terrace, something that was usually so ordinary but seemed like a thousand strong audience that day. What the heck was I supposed to say? Why wasn’t he saying anything? What was the best opening line when you were trying to figure out if a guy was potential husband material?

He smiled at something behind me. I turned to look at what had gotten his attention. ‘There are two beautiful parrots on that branch’ he said. Eh? Parrots on a branch? Dream situation blown apart. What kind of a lame conversation was this? This was my life at stake! And his too. Shouldn't we be doing something about it? Something real? If I didn't man up I could be stuck having to be polite my whole life. No! That would be a nightmare.

"Would you like to go on a date with me?"

I promise I had never before in my life even imagined in the remotest part of my wildest dreams, not even those involving that sitcom guy with nice eyes, that I would ask a guy that question. No wonder he was staring at me like I had asked him if we could go on our honey moon right away. Good. Atleast I could be sure of a solid rejection which would give me more experience in handling the next suitor.

‘Yes’

He seemed relieved and amused. It was my turn to stare. ‘I mean there is no way I can tell if you and I should be getting married. This arranged marriage protocol is outright taxing. Am sorry if I seem nervous. How can you know?’  he said. Nice. Honesty. Five points. Wait. Same question that was on my mind. Ten points.


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 


The silence in the living room was deafening  It was an opportunity for all four parents to stare at us like we had told them we each had different partners waiting downstairs to elope with. I was absolutely sure I had started a life long mother-in-law complaint cum argument session. But that was only if I somehow managed to ‘know’.

It was probably the toughest decision that both sets of parents had to make. No. I wasn't marrying Mr. Adithya yet though that decision would've been much easier for the elders to handle. I was going on a date with him.

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Walking back after coffee at one of the many CCD’s around, Mr. Adithya or Adhi that he wanted me to call him, was much more appealing than he had been at home stuck with looking at a girl who could be his potential bride. He was a sport and we had agreed to set aside the fact that we had an important decision to make. Not to mention having to look out for known faces that might carry information back home that so and so was found having coffee with the so and so of that household.

It would be a real mess because both families already knew, the so and so's in question were doing what was claimed and it would cause the informant to go around town advertising the fact that so and so's household had brought down the culture of marrying a complete stranger without even looking at him until the wedding and thus brought such shame to the country that even their NRI son married to a foreigner was ashamed of!

With a little bit of the pressure off, I learnt that Adhi wasn't a hero out of a novel but just a simple guy being a personality of his own. We didn't share path breaking chemistry or physics. It was mostly geography, covering the side-walks and the perimeter of the parking lot. There was no ‘What! You are this? And you like that? Oh you are my soulmate!’ No. There was nothing of that sort. It was just a light hearted conversation with a fellow citizen, not enough to set birds fluttering in my chest or chimes sounding in the background.

The evening came to an awkward pause but Adhi found the courage to ask me out on a second date. He still didn't ‘know’ he claimed. Mild humor. Five more points. We agreed to meet again the next day with a deal over two issues – one, confronting our folks back home over the ignominy of a second date with an arranged marriage proposal that interfered with the whole ‘arranged’ part of the procedure. And two, over the fact that we wouldn't try to find about each other from social networking sites. We wouldn't trust vanity.

I maintained tart silence at home that night and put my foot down refusing to call off the date. This was my decision I told them. Hmmm. Being brave?

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Continued....


Image courtesy : http://www.experienceproject.com/stories/Like-Holding-Hands/391386

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A note of gratitude


From a well timed piece of appreciation to a much needed reprimand I've had them all. And today I cannot imagine being what I am without all that love and attention. From inspiration to outright awe they've provided everything to me and I am one of the luckiest of students around to have studied under the best of them. 

The only perk to have moved constantly and been in about 7 different schools, not to mention 3 colleges is that I've had the privilege of knowing and being guided by some of the most amazing teachers. And not surprisingly the majority of lessons that I learnt were'nt part of the prescribed academic syllabus. When there was one that wiped my tears as I watched my mom walk away after dropping me in kindergarten class, there was another who let me sit on her lap while she marked attendance for music class! Then came the one that kept her promise of a piece of chocolate if I remained silent for a whole hour ( oh I was a blabbermouth :) ) and one that encouraged us to aim for the top ranks in class with a gift of different colored pens for 1st, 2nd and 3rd. I bagged one everytime! 

From little gestures to life changing ones they've provided them all. Like that fantastic English teacher who inspired and instilled a love for the language in me or that Biology teacher who still remains my 1st and irreplacable reason for a life long love towards the subject or that PT teacher with his guitar who is the reason I love christmas and carols! The math teacher who doubled up as our class teacher and always knew he could trace any prank to me, the geography teacher who felt I would do better at karagattam than kolattam (we won a competition later!), Sisters that trusted me with the lead in choirs, one ultimately sweet Father that fondly called me 'maamiyar' after a role in a play that earned me much acclaim, those teachers who stayed behind late at night in school with me waiting for my dad to pick me up after a cultural fest and PT and music masters with a sense of humor. 

From sweet encouragements to harsh realities they offered me everything when they trusted it would help me grow. That English teacher, a universal favorite, who scribbled tiny notes of appreciation in the margin of my essays but wisely advised me to keep it strictly simple in the common exams (I still have those essays with the remarks in red ink :) ), that class teacher who tried so hard to control her laughter at the rehearals to our play, that Botany teacher who pulled me into arguments on the subject to make me learn a lot more, that brilliant teacher at the coaching centre who is an icon for sincerity and humility,that English professor who believed I had it in me to make a speech when I myself didn't ( I won 1st prize!!!), that professor who was an encyclopedia of all that is cool and down to earth at the same time and that other professor who proved a teacher can also be a great friend! 

These personalities and many more that I recall with respect and admiration are the ones credited to having chiselled out whatever good one might find in me. They knew me for who I am, put up with my pranks, cheered me during highs and held my hand through lows, invested trust in me and brought out talents even I didn't know I was capable of! These were not mere chalk and board teachers, but ones that taught in the real sense of the word, touched many a heart and continues to live in the memories of every other student like me, lucky enough to have studied under them. To all of them : THANK YOU! I just hope my kids are as lucky as I was :)

P.S : A few teachers I wish I still were in touch with...thank you:
Padmam ma'm - for those colorful pens
Richard sir - for the wondrous language they call English...and for giving me a centum in reading :) 
Priyadharshini ma'm - for stepping in on that one biology class, explaining the nervous system in your own style and making me fall in love with biology!
Mrs. Leo - for all those wonderful choir sessions and trips to Rex matric :) 
Mrs. Pamela - for being the sweetest class teacher. who knew moral science could be fun!!!
Irudhayaraj sir - for being the sweetest math teacher...and a great singer! 'Raja raja chozhan naan' always reminds me of you sir :)
All staff, Sisters, Brothers and Father at St. Joseph's Acharapakkam - this will always remain my Alma Mater
Arul sir - for teaching us how to draw the perfect circle :) if I could cultivate 1% of your sincerity and dedication I would consider it an achievement!

Happy Teachers day!!!  :)




image courtesy : http://www.educator.com/news/the-future-of-teach-for-america/

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Your's Royally

I was one amongst millions that watched Prince William kiss his wife on the balcony at Buckhingam’s and feel happy for the duo if not slightly jealous as well. The extravaganza aside I also noticed like many, the poise and composure that HRH Kate (her title is two lines long…) was able to bring forward. Not very unlike her deceased mother-in-law the loved Princess Di,  Kate is the new poster girl for Britain’s monarchy.

Technical rants aside, I couldn’t help but wonder what it would really feel like to be picked off the usual routine and thrust into royalty by way of romance. And what would happen if such a situation should befall me? (Okay stop laughing people. I said stop). As unimaginable as it may be I did go ahead and wonder about the changes I may have to make to my lifestyle if a Prince comes knocking on my door (technically the huge landlady downstairs at my hostel wouldn’t allow him up the stairs!)

1)      For starters I may have to change the way I look and that translates as going from potential-Prince looks to showing I am actually potential-Princess (ok. That meant I have to quit being a tomboy)
2)      I may have to hit the gym with a vengeance and lose anything even remotely related to fatty acids in my constitution.
3)      My wardrobe would probably be incinerated and I would have to be the subject of final year projects for fashion technology students crafting a makeover.
4)      Royal hair and makeup artists would have their greatest nightmare come true the former trying to locate the hair on my head in an attempt to style it and the latter pondering over their kits to figure out how not to make me appear bleached in pictures and stop me from sweating all over their meticulously applied layers.
5)      I would definitely have to give up my run-in-the-place-of-walk gait because that would only leave the Prince panting after me up the driveway and that would be a Royal mess. They would probably recommend watching reruns of The Princess Diaries all day long though I doubt if I would get to meet with the Queen. She’s not my grandma anyway so I guess we can skip that!
6)      I would need vocabulary lessons. Not to increase mine but slow it down by the speed of light. There is no use if the Prince or any one for that matter doesn’t understand what dialogue I rapidly delivered a second ago.
7)      I would probably need to restack my bookshelf with more literature than Cook, Crichton, Follet, Sheldon and Archer. It  would save my erm…bottom from trouble if someone were to question me about the arts and my reply need not necessarily be “Oh! I didn’t know Mikey wrote that!”
8)      I would have to learn to laugh and smile with grace and poise. Pictures from my college farewell and trips to the theatre with me for a comedy film would certainly leave no doubt that 'guffaw' and 'roar' are the terms currently used to describe my laughter.
9)      My sarcasm would definitely have to disappear because when the Queen goes “I am the Queen of so and so” it would be a little inappropriate for me to respond with a “And I am the Queen of England!”
10)   I would have to stop jumping up and crying murder at provocative comments, smart takes and silly not so funny PJ’s. Apparently Princesses don’t do that. Atleast not openly on FB!

That’s a tiny list but sums up pretty much everything that has to go. Well if all this indeed ‘goes’ then I wonder what would be left of me for the Prince to love if at all he fell for ‘me’ in the 1st place. I would still be a perfect Princess and wave to the crowd and curtsey before the Queen but it would just be my ghost in Royal attire for nothing of my soul would be left!

But, if there is the assurance that my Prince would be this man that can stand up there in front of everyone, look up when I enter and say “You look beautiful…I love you for who you are at heart beneath the demands of protocol”  I would gladly do everything on that list without the slightest blink of an eye! By the looks of it Kate has found exactly this guy and the happiness on her face said it all. And that’s probably why she braved the Palace, Royalty, the paparazzi and millions of well wishers to claim her ticket to a happily ever after.

Coming back to me. Well….any Princes on FB that read Crichton??? 


Image courtesy: The Telegraph

Thursday, April 28, 2011

What would you do?

What would you do
When the time is right
But there is no end in sight?

What would you do
When you would like to let go of the past
Only to jump into the future lost?

What would you do
When all that you have are questions
Not answered by a million solitude sessions?

What would you do
When you know what you want
But pursue it you just can’t?

What would you do
When all that fills you is rage
And you want to tear apart history page by page?

What would you do
When the task is cut
But  you feel stuck in a rut?

What would you do
When it is there you want to be
But here you are left at sea?

What would you do
When the next step is uncertain
Behind a wall or behind a curtain?

What would you do
When you know not what to like
The roots the wings or the hike?

What would you do
When you can’t understand why
You sit in silence and let the hours go by?

What would you do
When there’s paper and there’s ink
But your mind refuses to think

What would you do
When that wish you make
Wouldn’t come true over a birthday cake

For my friend if you could tell me
A prick of light in darkness it would be
For I would know from your answer
That even if this is not an intellectual breather
I am not alone at the altar of problems either!



Saving Private Ryan

I’ve had this movie for a very long time now and finally pulled myself to watching it yesterday. It led to a self-inflicted slap imprint on my left cheek for unforgivable procrastination on my part with regard to the movie. I knew nothing about it except a little about the stellar cast and the background of a war. Two minutes into the movie I was mighty impressed with the direction and wondered who could’ve brought such arresting visuals and emotion onto the screen. Wikipedia informed me it was none less than Steven Spielberg and my right cheek now bears an imprint to match the left for not having guessed such an obvious bummer.

I understood there is definitely something that sets apart some actors and directors from the rest. Don’t ask me what it is because I would be at a loss to explain what only goes by as a fuzzy logic realization in my mind I can only feel. But there is something for sure. Because this bunch of actors on screen led on by one of the greatest directors ever, work some kind of magic that manages to both romanticize and criticize war, endear a group of rugged soldiers that walk around like titans sporting a gun only to cry out “Mama” going down and put you in a position where you decide with a character on the fate of another and question your choice when you lose a friend.

Saving Private Ryan is a WWII movie that has 8 soldiers (so many of them that I simply love – Edward Burns, Giovanni Ribisi, Vin Diesel, Adam Goldberg et.al,) led by Tom Hank’s character on an assignment to find one Ryan played by Matt Damon, who vehemently refuses to desert his troops inspite of having lost all three of his brothers to the war and is the only consolation to his aged mother. The setting and scenes are so sincere, I had to remind myself that I wasn’t fighting with the Allied forces and couldn’t punch one nasty German bloke in the nose without causing considerable damage to my already ailing monitor.

Movies like these are one of a kind. There is no conclusion to be reached. Only emotions to be felt; ones that run deep and make you shed a couple of tears, frustrated at why the human race continues to justify war, something in my opinion you can never do.

As for the movie it is an all time classic -  brilliant performances from all men, big roles and small,  a surviving reminder of what Spielberg can deliver apart from giant carnivores lumbering around a recreation park; creatures that look far less terrorizing in front of power hungry human leaders wielding weapons where their hearts should be.

Picture courtesy : http://www.moviepostr.com/saving-private-ryan-poster-539.html#

Saturday, March 5, 2011

One plus One

These days when I walk into the canteen there are no empty chairs available. Every single one of them occupied by "pairs" or that's what they are called. Most of these things are so mean enough to be wasting time in public with an insignificant other but the highlight is the attitude they throw when you occupy a lonely chair opposite them wanting to enjoy your coffee in peace!

The look suggests that you are a missionary from anti-cupid hell sent to generate waves of disturbance aided by a cup of caffeine. The guy usually tries to be the man and gives you a nasty glare that supposedly has powers to shoo you off and protect his moment of privacy with his abashed temporary consort. This at times is hilarious because the guy himself would weigh nothing more than all the beans in my curry put together at meal time and even with only curd rice for regular lunch, I could take him at the snap of a finger.

The women come in all shades. From this annoying overconfident chatterbox I would've given a gold mine to shut up to the scared clueless ones. But most times they are the wily ones that lure an unassuming spoilt brat for a wasted break time conversation.

I wonder how many of these so called 'in a relationship' categories last. How many of them really know to understand the difference between a 'wow-ranbir-drops-towel-eeeeee' and a 'this could be my man'?. How many of them learn from mistakes and realize they are knee deep in one right now?

But its an interesting line up. There are ones that just sit and talk. Ones that just sit and smile at each other. Ones that just sit. A pair where the girl was showing off her new haircut and the guy was running his hands through it trying to make it stay put (Thats what they call Animal grooming on Discovery). Ones that study together ( Thats probably what Pierre and Madam Curie did) and ones that even fight over the canteen bill!

The funniest thing is that these "pairs" are so judgmental that they are blind to their own situation but jump at the first chance to turn a scornful eye at another around or predetermine the course of a relationship between two individuals that walk in as friends. Such is the plight that it has become increasingly hard to have a normal conversation with a member of the opposite sex without being perceived as a pair and triggering a whole string of jealous reaction from total strangers that supposedly wanted a shot.

There also remain I guess the genuine ones amongst the lot that are hard to spot. They keep a low profile and stay sincere. Nobody objects to a good pair if they live up to their commitments. As for me, I want to and I have the right to enjoy my good coffee in peace. So the next time one of these Casanovas throws me a dirty glance I get to choose from a drop down list:

* Reciprocate with extended viguour accumulated from years of consuming thachi mamm
* Respond with a 'Hey how is that girl you were with at the other canteen last week'? (most of them have a number of backups so this one would most definitely work)

or the good 'ol

* "What? Oh c'mon...get a room" (roll eyes...turn back to coffee...and act like nothing happened)

Buzz off

I received a message on my mobile this morning. It was yet another plea from this nobody that has been trying to get me to respond to his so called self perceived intelligent attempts at flooring me.

“Please call me. I am Indian air fors”

And I am assuming he expected me to turn back in slow motion and run towards him with a bgm of saare jahaan se accha echoing in the background like a Karan Johar-Kajol piece salute him and fix a date for the wedding. I have two things to say to you mister, no make that three – 1) you might be “air fors” but I am plainly not as stupid. 2) get a life 3) oh by the way…sign up for some English lessons.

Aside from the fact that the effort was totally pointless, I couldn’t help but wonder about how exactly jobless these romeos are and what exact thought process they go through when they decide to cyber disturb someone. This one has been spamming my inbox with forward messages in hindi that are supposedly on ‘pyar’ and ‘mohabbat’ and I am expected to swoon at them and fly without visa to Macchu Pichhu and do a Kilimanjaro! Given that my hindi graduation is at “ek gaaon meh ek kisan raghu thaatha” he could’ve confessed he is the Prime Minister and I wouldn’t have known! The only regret I have is that Sony Ericcson doesn’t provide a facility for blocking mobile numbers. My Spice handset is going “AHAH!” somewhere in the closet.

It is a fast moving and highly competitive world (at least that’s what I was told at one end of a high level reprimand session) and I guess the only explanation for these annoying spammers is a high degree of desperateness. Not to mention crass heroism in movies that offers “eve-teasing” as third degree effort at wooing a female. You never have to give a damn to what she considers a worthy match or least of all her privacy. Ok now before all of you jump at this line and go on to rip arteries over a gender bias let me add water to the chutney and dilute it so you wouldn’t know the taste. Women are desperate too and trust me ladies, men sometimes need to be left on their own (note to self: take slipper and hit on head twice).

Coming back to the issue, one thing I have observed is that none…and by that I mean “NONE” of these weirdoes have the slightest ounce of insight into the English language beyond peter. I have never received a properly worded message (include term ‘that makes sense and prevents Sam Anderson from looking like a Harvard English major) from these Xs and Ys inviting me to a healthy conversation.  I wonder what that means. ‘Wannabe  silver screen Rocket Rajas?’. You bet.

One thing  that’s bewildering in these individuals is the amount of time they have at their disposal to waste. Or if I could be brash – a Ph.D in Jobless loaferism. This and more of their misused shrewdness stands proven from the fact that this guy got my number off a record at a recharge outlet (note to self: listen to BFF when she says buy scratch cards). Not to mention other places where you fill out a form and give your number because duh they need it for sending across important information. Its not what happens though. Like for example the most important message this guy at the Dell outlet had to send across was a forward message on how guys always get duped into falling in love with girls (seriously man get a perspective…oh wait you only know Inglipis…that meant get a brain).

I have tried to and failed at finding a reason or logic behind these messages and overconfident overtures. I use the same word to describe these attempts as I do with bad advertisements – disgusting (women giving a constipated look and running after a loser just because he emptied a bottle of your’s truly’s perfume is just that – disgusting. What are you marketing? Prostitutes?)

 As funny as some of these ‘read-options-delete’ texts maybe ‘I am your neighbor’ does not qualify as a license to book a dream location. I also have a terminally psychotic case for a neighbor so you get the drift.
These fellows are also incredibly arrogant and try every trick in the book to get you to respond. From please to ‘apdi enna di onakku’ I have been at the receiving end for quite a number of these flings (once I get my voodoo diploma you know what I am going to do to you. Hint : ragged doll).

There is a golden rule however in reply to this balderdash – silence. Something my mother reminds me every time I deliver a monologue of carefully picked, choicest and the best of swears as I describe the cheapster that’s draining my mobile of charge with his calls and messages. Its very hard, believe me but that’s the only thing you can do if you don’t want to hear a word from him again (a year is the minimum period they give up after. Or a new wall to bang on. Whichever is earliest).  

This was just a steam out session so there is no “Fool’s guide on how not to be ridiculous trying to get a woman to talk to you” that I am going to offer but here are some things that might help :

1) Throw your mobile (or the one that you picked out of someone’s pocket in the bus and using right now to spam till the top up runs out) into the slush that runs (er… is stagnant) under the Basin Bridge.
2) Get a life
3) Get a job
4) Learn English (Not from Actor Jai. I meant real English…not towel come towel go)
5) Get a life
6) Get a job
7) Have some pride in your being...and dignity…and integrity (sighhhhhhh!)
8) Repeat steps 2 and 3. Go to 5 and 6

P.S  1 : thanks to TRAI and its new 100 msgs per day regulation! Allelujah!
P.S  2 : Before you go ahead and ask me how then would I like to be spoken to – "user busy with her life. call again next century"!


Image courtesy : http://greenarbytheday.com/2011/04/11/green-travel-please-do-not-disturb-my-linens/

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Bits and Pieces of wisdom : Part II

How to wash ur really huge bed spread :
Spill liquids like milk, buttermilk, tea (coffee stains badly), chutney, sambar, porridge and the like strategically at different areas time and again. clean up the sq cms in question each time. big picture - spread is cleaned! Bingo!

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A man is finished when he loses his mind over a girl.....A woman is finished when she loses her heart over a man!

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Of pongal and kanu





         I was standing in front of my professor’s office. He rose from his chair and walked towards me with an appreciative smile and extended his hand to congratulate me on winning the best project award. I saw my Mother standing next to me a plate in hand containing a pair of coconuts and an assortment of colored lumps trying to say something. Probably congratulate me. “Nethra ezhundhru….veyyil varathukulla kanu vekkanum…kaaka vandhudum”. I was in the deepest of hangovers from all the festival food from the day before and it beat the hell out of me what a crow had to do with my early morning bliss of sleep except tamper with the serenity of it. I sat up on the bed groggy and with great effort took my mind through a by pass route to being awake.

                  It was that time of the year again. Time for Mom and I to sneak out when the first rays of dawn were still touching themselves up with compact, tip toe to the terrace like the most professional of thieves, (if explaining kanu to me in the morning takes so much effort try telling that to the inebriated last night watchman!) and lay out a spread befitting a crow.

                It begins with setting the table, couple of turmeric leaves actually. If you are a crow all you care about is food so it doesn’t matter if you are hoodwinked into believing it is a banana leaf! Then you proceed to ‘serving’. It weird because nobody is asking for more. But the exercise is fun because you go about placing 7 tiny little chunks of different coloured food on the platter. Not just that. You pray with every piece that even if the crow’s family comes to shambles fighting over who gets the better chunks your family should remain close knit and make enough food and love to share. 

            It is a brilliant strategy. The crow supposedly is like the authority on sharing because every time one of them finds food he caws out to his mates and shares (for all we know he could be showing off but hey I don’t work for the Discovery channel!). The assumption here is that even if such a big hearted though pea brained crow’s reputation is lost there is still hope that you family would stand rock strong given that you have successfully eliminated the avian reference.

         This is a prayer for siblings especially brothers to remain together and maintain warmth at home even after the arrival of a ‘she’ from outside into their lives. Girls pray for the wonder man in their lives that would understand their ties to both sides of the family. Ladies pray for more strength to handle issues at home that sprung up probably because their crows didn’t listen properly to them last year. 

Jokes apart this whole kanu concept is fun. I get to see dawn which is a wonder because my hibernation lasts well into afternoon usually, it takes skill to get 7 bits out of the lump my Mom gives me - they break, drip and refuse to be molded into shape and there’s the challenge of advertising your display before the hungry winged icons turn up. If you are still working at it even after they arrive there are impatient caws all over in sync sound admonishing your lack of punctuality. Crows can really show off trust me!

           It has been many years since my first kanu when  Mom handed me a lump and I placed it gingerly on the leaf like that with a look of triumph on my face at having accomplished a rarely easy task. Then she told me I had to make 7 servings out of it and I realized I had been majorly snubbed! There were times when it would be freezing on the terrace and many a crow would receive expletives from me for appetizers before the actual food. I used to literally sleep walk through kanu when I was a kid but now I have mastered the art of snoring inside and working outside. Four years of college teaches you that.

             What all this has to do with religion or tradition I don’t really want to comment on. But I think the underlying message is that if you can believe enough in what you wish for you would ultimately obtain it. Crow or no crow holding a family together is an individual talent. Yet getting to do something with Mom, something she believes in and her Mother did before her, the jokes we crack during it and all the leg pulling is so beautiful that I wouldn’t mind if I have to lay a table for Tarzan next!

Bits and Pieces of wisdom

There are three major types of Facebookers:
1 - always online...posting, commenting, poking, farming (yours truly included)
2 - online occasionally...checks on long time no see contacts
& then d 3rd kind
those that have deleted their accounts and gotten a real life!

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------                                                                                                                                          
Sometimes it is better to waste a little to save a lot. Like for example letting your wash basin tap drip a little is okay...compared to sitting on top of it & exercising your biceps on it trying to close it only to rip it right off the basin and waste a gallon of water! - Think!

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
No matter what you do in life there will always be......someone you want to kick, someone you want to strangle, someone you want to slap, someone you want to scream at, someone  you want to rip apart and someone you want to kill! No dearth for things to do...or rather entertainment! B-)

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

There may be a hundred things you want in life...but there's just one thing you have to do to get them - make a choice!
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Inspite of knowing fully well that a marriage between two people takes away a lot of 'me's, inserts a lot of 'we's, is wrought with everyday trouble, uncertainty, little fights that grow into full blown blame sessions and basically turns a lot of good in a person's life to otherwise, we still congratulate the two individuals that have decided to come together for life! the human race should win hands down in a competition for optimism in the process of evolution!
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Being a bitch rocks! Not being the overtly caring, emotional loving personality rocks even more! Giving people back what they deserve iss woohoo! B-)