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Monday, June 30, 2008

Livin’ it up at the Hotel California

K is the manager of a hotel in California. If it's the very reputation of the hotel or K’s sheer fine luck I know not, but this hotel seems to attract customers of the hilarious kind. Since K refuses to start his own blog and hinted that he wants this up here, here you go, out of the kindness of my heart. For your reading pleasure, this episode is about the adventures of Lord Krishna and Mrs. S. Think it sounds like a new cartoon appearing on our Hindi-cized version of Cartoon Network? You’re not much off the mark about the cartoon part.

Act 1:

Enter Mrs. S from London, a regressive healing expert with clients in California, looking for a hotel room. Our very own K graciously shows her to one. Mrs. S is overjoyed.

“The energy in this room is very positive, Krishna Krishna…”

“What perfect vaastu, Krishna Krishna…”

“Can I have some toast and a pot of tea sent up here please, Krishna Krishna…”

Exit a satisfied Mrs. S, leaving behind an amused hotel.


Act 2:

Enter K, acting very managerial, at his desk. Phone rings.

“Hello. Hotel California. How may I help you?”

“This is Mrs. S. I would like to book a room for Saturday please.”

I’m sorry Mrs. S, we have no rooms available on Saturday”

“Krishna Krishna, Now what do I do!?”

Exit an apologetic amused K.

Act 3:

Enter K and Mrs S. Luckily, there is vacancy today.

Mrs. S: “Can I have the same room I had last time?”

K: I’m sorry Mrs S., but that room is occupied.

Mrs. S: “Krishna Krishna…”

K: “But we do have Room 101 for you. It has a king bed, very comfortable. I’m sure you will like it.”

Mrs. S: “Oh no... Krishna does not like the ground floor…”

K: “…………… (Stifled laughter) We do have rooms on the second floor. How about this twin bedroom?”

Mrs. S: “What will I do with two beds Krishna.....?”

K: “The only free single rooms we have are on the ground floor actually….”

Mrs. S: “Oh… Krishna… Show me another room then…”

K: “Here you go. Another twin bedroom.”

Mrs. S: “Oh this room is good. Krishna will like it very much. But I only need one bed. The other one I leave to Krishna.”

K: (Under his breath) Krishna help me…..

Exit K, leaving Mrs. S who is rearranging the angle of the mirror and humming something that sounds suspiciously like Teri aankhein bhool bhulaiyya.

THE END

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Ego

Our best friend. Our worst enemy.

Gives us our individuality. Can alienate us.

Gives us our dignity. Yet, can make us lose our dignity instantly.

Makes us stand up for what we think is right. But then again, who the hell says we actually are right?

Can make us an individual to be admired. Can make us an individual to be ridiculed and ignored.

Helps you stick to your beliefs. Can make you stick to your beliefs too rigidly.

Gives us success. Gives us heartache.


Life is too complicated for one enjoy it properly. Bah.

Isn't ego a man made thing anyway? We discovered it. Gave it a name. Psychoanalysed it. Nurtured it. If we hadn't done all that, life would be blissfully less perplexing. Great going...

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

You don’t understand.

Really. You don’t.

Most people will listen to you. They will nod sympathetically. And then they will say those two comforting heartfelt words: “I understand”. Bullshit.

Don’t get me wrong… I’m actually very grateful that you listened patiently, grateful for your sympathy, grateful that you simply didn't run away while pulling your hair out after I narrated my dukh bhari daastan… But you don’t understand. Everyone says it of course, including me, and I’m sure I’ll continue to do so. But you simply do NOT understand.

It may be your best friend; it may be your sibling; it may be your mom. But they will not understand unless they are in exactly the same situation you are in. Placing yourself in someone else’s shoes does not work. You have to have a pair of that exact same broken in and worn out shoes of your very own. Sometimes even an absolute stranger or an enemy may understand better than your loved ones.

It’s simple. Suppose I have a problem. Let’s hypothetically say that my problem is that of a horrifying landlady who is making my life hell and not giving me any peace of mind, so much so that I have to resort to blah-ing to my friends about her and ranting about her on my blog. Now you can’t always seethe about her to someone who has an amazing motherly landlady who knits them sweaters and bakes cakes for them just because she felt like. Because that person will not really understand. They might sympathise, sure. But they will be thinking “My situation is so different. Man I’m lucky to have such a sweet landlady.” (Sympathetic nod and pat on shoulder) “How can she be feeling this way? Maybe she just doesn’t appreciate her landlady’s feelings” (Aww you poor thing... She did that??? Tsk tsk…) “Hmmm…I wonder what landlady darling has cooked for me today…..”

Lame example but you get the picture. And there’s nothing wrong with it as such. It’s human nature. But find another with the same problem as you have and there you have a kindred spirit and there you have a person you can REALLY talk to. You can narrate and discuss and bitch freely without bothering that the other person will be horrified at what you say. Without wondering if you are the one in the wrong. Only here can you truly let your feelings out. Even if it’s an absolute stranger you’re talking to. And if this person happens to be your best friend/close confidante, so much the better for you. Not that I would wish all my problems on my best friend of course…

It’s happened to me. Having a friend you can talk to about anything and everything in the world except for a couple of topics which I could produce a tirade on for hours. And it was infuriating, having to hold that stuff in. I’ve found an outlet. Phew.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Tag! You're it!

Highly interesting tag. A tad long. My apologies. Oh hell it’s my blog… Apologies duly retracted.

Ten random things about myself:

  1. I have negligible patience. And that’s putting it mildly. No instant reply to an SMS and I fret. I have to wait for someone I’m supposed to be meeting, I pace, I fidget, I fume. Is that because of my inane tendency to turn up before the decided time you ask? Let’s not change the subject here…
  2. Although I do think the best plans are the spontaneous ones, I have a paranoia for advance planning. I will be satisfied when tickets for a movie are booked 2 days in advance. If the hotel room is booked a week before a road trip to another city with friends. Add the zero patience, and I snap when people refuse to help in planning at all. And woe betide someone if the plan is called off due to the lack of planning….
  3. I can survive solely on pizzas and chocolate. I love food more than I love my little toes on both feet. Ehh they're too chubby anyway.
  4. I read insanely fast. In school, often we used to share a book between 2 people while reading, between classes. People fought not to read with me because by the time they had finished reading 2 paragraphs, I would have finished both pages and would be turning to the next page gingerly trying to read whatever I could see of the next page (Refer for point 1 for explanation for behaviour).
  5. I want to try everything. And anything. I want to experience absolutely everything that life has to offer, thrice over, excluding experiences of the narcotic and tobacco kind. And I want to have done it 5 minutes ago.
  6. I crack some of the worst jokes known to mankind. And laugh myself silly at them as well as the groans of the victims who have to suffer them. And I’m offended if they don’t. Groan at them, that is.
  7. Once I start laughing in earnest, it’s next to impossible to get me to stop. And it has its benefits too. People act concerned and very sympathetic like they’re talking to a nutcase after I haven’t paused once in two full minutes. Once, I startled a friend so much he offered to buy me anything in Shopper’s Stop that I wanted if that would make me pause and assure him I was fine.( I still kick myself for having politely and breathlessly declined that offer). The longest I’ve lasted to my recollection is 2 hours 15 minutes. All right… Pick up those jaws now… Where’s your courtesy?
  8. I would sell my soul to have a puppy of my very own.
  9. I cry. Way too often. Ok maybe not fultoo cry…. When Sirius died, yes. When Dumbledore died, yes. When Gandalf died, yes. That’s ok, right? Now… When the 3 men and 1 woman live happily ever after with the baby (3 men and a baby, don’t make me kill you), I got emotional. When Manny saved Ellie and declared his love for her, I got teary eyed (Ice Age 2 for the ones scratching their heads/beards). When Opal Mehta finally got kissed, got wild, got a life and got into Harvard after all the nonsense that preceded it, I thought a sentimental “good-for-her”. When Sam, Annie and Jonah walk away hand in hand after all the insomnia in Seattle, I had to blink my eyes rapidly. You get the picture. Yeah I know… My trip is waiting, wide open... it’s yours for the taking…
  10. Start talking about astrology, horoscopes, kundalis, palmistry, karmic and cosmic connections, and what the stars have in store for me, in front of me, and I will crack up. I don’t mean to offend you so I give you an advance warning. And when I crack up, watch out… (Refer to point 7)

Nine things I wish I wasn’t/didn’t:

  1. I find it excruciatingly difficult to discuss my problems with others. Very often I don’t. If I do, it’s limited to around 2 people whom I confide in. Wish I was more open.
  2. I’m way too shy. Hence I can’t talk to new people instantly. So often it’s happened that a friend and I are introduced to someone new and while the friend goes on to become best pals with the stranger in a few minutes, I come across and disinterested and unwilling to speak for quite a while. Keep at it and then I mellow down and refuse to shut up :)
  3. I think enough for the whole US army put together. Yeah, it’s a tad unnecessary. Once, a guy who was (unsuccessfully) trying to hit on me wanted to read my palm (yes, I did crack up very soon). Taking my hands into his own (ahem), the first thing he said was all the excessive lines on my palm said that I thought way too much… So it’s apparent even to observers…. Damn…
  4. Because of above unwanted habit, I get worried very easily and very often. I think of all possible scary scenarios to a situation and fret about each and every one of them.
  5. I use the adjective cute way too much. I really need to cut down.
  6. I forgive. I don’t often forget.
  7. Am too self conscious.
  8. I am lazy. I procrastinate.
  9. My mood is often decided by what other people do or say. And I hate that.

Eight things I’m wondering right now:

  1. Why does this tag seem a little tough?
  2. Why did I skip the gym today???
  3. Will Sunday’s trek actually happen?
  4. Why are the only messages I get nowadays from Reliance?
  5. To how many people will the stuff I say here be a surprise?
  6. Sigh… Will I ever reach my dream weight?
  7. Why were cockroaches and pigeons put on this earth when they serve no purpose but to annoy?
  8. When oh when will I understand what I actually want from life?

Seven things that cross my mind a lot:

  1. Where is “this” going? Should "it" be going at all?
  2. I hope there’s no hullabaloo created when I get married.
  3. I hope things are different when I have kids.
  4. I wonder if I'll have any "friends forever".
  5. I always seem to be reaching out for something different than what I should be…
  6. Sometimes I seem to strive to be unhappy but obviously hate it when I am… why the hell?
  7. I should really stop being so lazy…

Six things I’d like to do before I die:

  1. Bake an edible cake. Every attempt so far has resulted in something resembling a different planet each time.
  2. Be a famous columnist.
  3. Have sex. See what the fuss is all about.
  4. Bungee jump.
  5. Have a dog which dotes on me.
  6. Maintain this blog till the very end. Far fetched, yes. But possible.

Five turn ons:

  1. The ability to talk mind boggling nonsense effortlessly
  2. A French beard.
  3. A guitar. Take a half decent looking guy and a guitar and put them together and you have a very weak-kneed me. I kid you not.
  4. The ability to handle my moodiness. A rarity, this one.
  5. Ability to make me want to talk endlessly.


Four Turn offs:

  1. Be good to the people lesser than you. Act unnecessarily mean to a little beggar and put an empty chocolate wrapper in her begging bowl and face my wrath.
  2. Male chauvinism. Blech. It’s everywhere.
  3. Refusing to accept one’s own mistakes.
  4. Over-nosiness

Three ways to win my heart:

  1. Play the guitar for me.
  2. Go to great lengths just to elicit a simple smile from me.
  3. Talk to me. Give me something new to think about. Tell me about yourself without overdoing it. Have a genuine desire to know about me, and not just the pretty bits. Don’t force your opinion on me. Discuss. Compromise. And keep at it.

Two smileys that describe me:

  1. :P - Teasing people
  2. :D - Laughing!

One confession

My first crush was Captain Planet. Yes, the cartoon. Doesn’t fictional animated character sound so much better?

This was tougher than I thought. And took longer than I thought it would. But fun. Anyone who wants, take a shot at it. Enjoy :)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

What's in a number...?

Of all the friends I have, quite a few are quite a bit older than I am. Presently, they are 24, 25, 27, 29... You get the picture… I first started interacting with them when I was 16 or so. At that time, these people were in the age group of 21-27 years. What stunned me was that I got along so smashingly with them. I could talk to them freely on subjects ranging from the mundane to the significant; from the general to the personal. And never once did they let the age gap interfere. In the beginning I expected teasing remarks calling me a kid, and the like, since I had seen it so many times with other people. But no, none of that… to my astonishment. Now that I think about it, if I had been in their place, maybe I would not have interacted and connected so much with one so much younger… Perhaps… And nothing can describe how glad I am that this was not the case with them. No talking down to me, no filtering or censoring conversations, no snide remarks. All I ever got was a surprised “Hey, I just realized... you’re the only undergrad friend I have!” from K and a comic “Guess I’m too old for you, huh?” from D.

People were surprised at the number of older friends I had, and continue to be. But I’m glad I have them in my life. I would have missed out on way too much had they ever let the age gap make any sort of difference at all.

So here’s to all the sense, nonsense, inspiration, endless messages, long conversations, “paid-for” lunches, bike rides, career counseling, mental therapy, trips “into orbit”, shopping sprees, tattoo tips, timepass flirting and loads more. Love you guys :)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Here today, gone tomorrow.

So often it happens we take solace in something temporary rather than something permanent.

Some people are closer to their friends than to their family. Friends are, strictly speaking, temporary. You never know when you will lose them. They might get married and go away; they might shift residence and move away; they might just lose touch over the years, finding no time for you… Yet these relationships are at times more relied upon, from the mental point of view. That momentary wisp of friendship, that sudden moment of understanding, that spark of connection or that steady trust that that develops with those people you call your friends, that can make you open up eons more than the steadfastness, the sturdiness, the permanence of family. You can discuss freely, without any inhibition, without fearing disapproval, rejection or repulsion. Discover yourself without worrying if what you discern might be wrong in their eyes, without fearing that you might be thinking, speaking or doing something which would bring forth disapproval. Without the fear that you might have to repent severely what you did and make amends. Because if these happen, damage control is easier. If not possible, you can always find more friends, if it comes to that. You cannot find another family.

Consider it in another sense of the word. This is purely from a personal point of view. If I have a secret or problem I cannot divulge freely, but need to talk about, what do I do? I talk about it freely, openly. But to someone who has no clue about the repercussions it would cause if spoken to people closer to home. People who are permanently there, for the present at least; those are whom I can’t talk to. There the fear of people’s judgment and trustworthiness comes in. Problem college, discuss thoroughly with friends back home. And the other way round. No danger of leaks, no consequences you might regret, no mental trauma.

Psychologically, I depend on impermanence more. What about you? And what would you rather be?

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Silly Spice- The newest member.

I had heard a lot about the movie "Mistress of Spices". I had heard it was highly acclaimed. Hence I planned to catch it on TV today. I ended up seeing only the last ten minutes of the movie and though it may actually be very good, creative, moving, etc etc, this is what I inferred from it, from only the last ten minutes I might add. So if you loved the movie and cannot bear to see its reputation be blanded down, hold your spicy tongues till the end of the post.

Aishwaria Rai who is the female lead is called Tilo. She is the "Mistress of Spices”, which is a fancy name for a spice seller abroad some place. She keeps talking to her spices as though they are her "Dear Diary" cum shooting-star cum puppy-who-fawns-over-you cum passionate-lover. Dialogues are thrown in like “I know love is right but I shall live only for you, my dear spices.” “Cinnamon, you have helped me through this rough patch in my life.” Ok that is weird and I’m pretty sure that’s not just me. Spice Girl is confused about love life with Mr. Cute Firang, helps everyone else by being superwoman, but has no time to fulfill her desires, as she bemoans to her beloved elaichi. So one day, she dolls up with home remedies made from her spices, wears a sexy red sari, spends a passionate night with Cute Firang and then (I think) attempts to commit suicide by fire, surrounded by red chillies, in her shop, after burying herself in them. She fails at this and Cute Firang finds her amidst loads of rubble with not a scratch, burn or tear on her or any of her clothes, with hair and makeup perfectly intact and with strange accent firmly in place. She then realizes her mistake and emotionally blackmails Cute Firang into rebuilding her shop.

I won’t comment on the story, really. I don’t even know it. But I will say this… Her name is Tilo. This might have specifically been chosen because throughout at least the last ten minutes, she kept gathering til in her hands and letting it flow down like it was water. You see the connection? Even her parents while naming her had a foresight that she would be a Spice Girl.

Another coincidence... Why was Ash picked to star in this movie? Because of her I’m-an Indian-but-I’m-not-accent? Because she’s pretty? Because she acts well? (That last one is definitely not it.) Give up? It’s because of the spice connection. Aishwaria RAI… could it get any more obvious? It was fate. It was a recipe gone terribly wrong...

Now that I’ve nicely butchered this movie for those who loved it, I now (Spice) jet off before I’m slaughtered. Bring on the skewers.

Curiosity thrills :D

A (to M1): I'm curious... Can you have sex underwater?

M1: How would I know? Not like I’ve tried you know…

A (to M2): Hmmphhh... Fine… You tell me… Can you have sex underwater?

M2: (Indignation personified) How would I know????

A: Oh god… Fine… I’ll rephrase that... Can one have sex underwater?

M2: Nope. Can’t be done. At least two are needed.

A: ………………………………….

Saturday, June 07, 2008

To Steve Jobs: My Apologies

It was cliché. It was everywhere. It was on TV, books, advertisements, even billboards. It was annoying.

What I’m talking about is the big hype and depression that came with the rite of passage of turning 30. Or as sitcoms referred to it, the big three-oh. Yeesh… my reaction- come on. Suck it up. You managed to stay alive for 30 years didn’t you? Celebrate. Or if not, don’t make people moan along with you.

To all those sitcoms, to all those books, commercials and billboards; my apologies. Me, a 19 year old with the mental age of a 4 year old (or so her friends claim) has seen the light; way too early actually. It happened when a friend hit 20. (Don’t make me say the big two-oh. Shoot me if I succumb.) Panic set in. The panic causing thoughts were/are:

  • Oh… She’s 20 now. That’s old, right? Hey, even I’M almost 20. That’s old right?
  • Oh no… When I turn 20, life as I know it is over. No more teenage years. No more double benefits of adult and kid. Come on, when you’re 18 or 19, you can huffily claim to be an adult and get away with things and at other times, make that cute pouty face and get away with doing something you might have been berated for otherwise.
  • Oh no… I'll have to graduate! Leave college! Get a job! Start earning! Decide what on earth to do with life! Run!
  • Oh no… Soon, annoying relatives will start pestering me to get married. The perennial comments of “Such a tall girl no… will have to find a nice Tamil boy taller than you” and “My sister’s husband’s nephew’s cousin is a doctor in Madras. He is the perfect boy for you!” will have to be heard and tolerated with much more patience than normal, which I lack in any case.

And I occasionally moan to Dad, “Appa, I’m becoming so old!” And I get a standard response, a well deserved raised eyebrow.

And people wonder why I act so kiddish.

Save yourselves. Stay juvenile, stay foolish.

Friday, June 06, 2008

All in all it's just Another Brick in the Wall

Normal conversations with Another Brick in the Wall: *

Convo 1
Me: Saw the perfect girl for you on the train. Was sitting opposite me for an hour. Oh well, she just left.
Brick: You did get her number right? You did tell her about me right? Cos if not, I don’t want to hear about such things…
Me: Let me describe her… Short, thin, very curly hair, wearing a rock tshirt, tattoo on her left wrist, head banging away to her Ipod… Sounds perfect for you na? :P
Brick: Whaaa… I’m already in love with her. What are you doing to me? :(

Convo 2
Brick: When you going coming to Mumbai?
Me: 3 weeks or so…
Brick: Hope you have talked to some girls in your college about me… done your propaganda and all… Worn that billboard around your neck saying that your nice sweet brother is single and ready to mingle…
Me: Of course. 2 guys were interested. None else. Sorry…
Brick: Damn… Try harder next time… Well… do the guys look good then?
Me: ………………………………………………………

Convo 3
Me: So how was class?
Brick: Oh I saw this really cute girl!!
Me: So did you talk to her?
Brick: Ummm… No… but I did talk to this other girl so I wouldn’t trip over my own jaw as it hit the ground when I looked at the cute one.
Me: Big surprise… Like I keep saying… You cannot flirt for nuts…
Brick: I can too! I was flirting with the other girl ok…
Me: What did you say?
Brick: We…ahem… talked about office life and how frustrating and hazardous it can be…
Me: I rest my case…

To make this wannabe-flirt-but-actually-shy-sweet-nincompoop happy and embarrassed as hell, all gals and interested guys contact him here. My work here is done. :)

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* All conversations here have been exaggerated. He’s not actually that much of a nincompoop or that boring. Just hilarious.