Monday, December 11, 2006

Small talk

Guys, this one is for you, to balance out my sisterhood post. For all of you having problems choosing a sexy Christmas present for your wife/girlfriend. Here's help.
Now go, splurge on her!

Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood

Weird place this blog is. When I first started out, rather warily as a novice, it was only to comment on Urmi’s blog. Yes, it was that specific. Because, all these years that I’ve known her (sorry can’t really give the numbers, I’m severely mathematically challenged), we’ve only verbally interacted or at most chatted. So I had no clue just how well she wrote, when she deigned to write, that is. Purpose clearly defined, I had to set up a personal blog since, madam wouldn’t allow anonymous comments on her’s.

Once into blogosphere, like a toddler in playschool, I started discovering the wonders of this world. Since I’m also seriously technically challenged, I made Urmi’s blog my centrepoint from where I could branch out to read several others, most of whom were nameless heads, some merely names and some pseudonyms. To me of course, except for Urmi, no one really mattered. I simply dropped in to read good writing, because I couldn’t write to save my not-so-blooming life. I soon realized, it wasn’t all that easily to be an objective, emotionally uninvolved, casual reader. There were people out there who seemed like they read my mind, wrote about things that affected me, made me happy and even terribly annoyed me. Hellooooo. This is the kind of emotional bonding one feels for people. Not inanimate objects like a web log, for Heaven’s sake!

Upon some introspection, I realized, there were some blogs I got badly hooked on to. And these were the ones where I found some similarity with either my life or the way I thought about certain things in life. And, much to the utter surprise of some people who claim to know me rather well, they were blogs written by women. (I did read the men, too, so stop raising your eyebrows, right now!)

It must’ve been the subconscious, which unfortunately I still don’t seem to have any control over (damned, where are my powers of wizardry?). In spite of staying away from typically soppy, bitchy and opinionated women in real life, I was being drawn to mellifluous, pellucid, vitriolic and rather conceited posts! Damn! Damn! Damn!

But they were fun. To read and to comment upon. And thank God for the comments, that I developed a kind of familiarity with some of the people I read. Dawn of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood!

M(tread softly upon), being among the first such. Again, I’ve forgotten when I first read her, but it was an instant liking for this mysterious woman, who seemed to read my mind just too spookily well. Every time I read her, it is as if I know, I realize a little bit more about myself. I don’t know why or how, but somewhere along the way, she felt a similar closeness and we bonded, like reunited old friends. Or was it like siblings? Naaaaah! (Holding hand down and telling self, “Don’t get carried away, not just yet. Long way to go.”) Ok Clarification. So M’s a doc, she knows a little bit about psychiatry (you know, must have been part of her medical course) therefore, she just knows how the mind works and writes about such things fluently. And I, the emotional fool, like many others, only am drawn towards such spontaneous outburst of emotional feelings. Right M? (Winks)

Then there’s Princess B(itch). Let’s just say she’s just too much fun to ignore. She’s too old to be my daughter, and too young to be my sister, really. But the babe has just the kind of spunk and sweetness-tinged vitriol that excites me. Oh and yes, there’s something about the bandwidth too. 440MHz, Love?

And, finally a few months back, Urmi directed me to a certain lady who shared her surname, she told me. And was it a pleasure to discover Missus Em or what? A self- proclaimed dinosaur but with the zest of a twenty-year old. Not a glitch between the heart and the head in what she writes and how she writes it. The mistress of pickles, Lali emanates a warmth that can melt the most frozen person. For me, of course, she’s now my dictionary, encyclopaedia, agony aunt, my personal therapist, friend, sibling all rolled in to one. Phew, that lady knows how to juggle her roles, alright!

I can’t really say what Urmi means to me in a paragraph or even a whole book, so I’ll desist. Suffice to say, she’s a part of my existence.

Apart from Urmi, these are people I have no qualms sharing a bit of my personal self with and vice versa. These are my much needed girlfriends who I can virtually go off on trips with, fall back on or look up to. We each have minds of our own, we agree, we disagree, we agree to disagree on issues, we whine, crib, bitch, pat each other’s backs, we sympathise and empathise with as well as choose to ignore attention seeking behavioural disorders. We have the panacea for each other’s ills and we serve as an elixir of life. And of course, we share our little secrets of a happy, healthy and long youthful life.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Small pleasures of life

It’s amazing how sometimes we’re overwhelmed by the simple pleasures of life. Like a few words of reassurance, a compliment, a look of the eyes that tells you it’s one of genuine concern, a squeeze of the hand, a kiss, a hug or even a phone call.

It’s a pity that we often overlook them in our daily grind and look for more expensive means to tackle our depression, insecurity, self doubt, self pity, and the works. And thanks to our myopic vision, the psychologists, marriage counsellors, education counsellors, and whathaveyous are having a field day out there.

Relationships and marriages are the worst sufferers. They are falling apart like nine pins because neither can take the stress at work and obviously they don’t have the patience or tolerance to hear each other out amicably once back home. The war’s given up even before it’s begun. They agree a third party intervention is essential to sort their personal matters out. And sharing confidential information with third parties always come for a price. A rather hefty one at that. But no worries, there’s enough disposable income to waste on the quirks. One’s pain and loss provides vicarious emotional and financial pleasure to another.

“Am in love” is a phrase that has been duly replaced with “Am going steady” “or am in a relationship”. Being in love, feeling the warmth of his/her presence, wallowing in love, blinded by love are all passé and one runs the risk of being branded an emotional fool. It’s all about a “workable relationship” now. Will it or won’t it work. Simple.

Move aside heart. Step in head. Don’t dream about those never-ending walks into the sunset or the cosy rain-soaked cuddle. Stay awake and just do it. (Ok , Ok, I know you do much more. Good for you!)

Don’t just plunge in and say “I love you.” Think of the kind of “investments” you need to make and the various “exit plans” you must keep handy before saying “I Do”.

Alas, why didn’t I think of these ever? Haven’t made any investments, nor do I have an exit plan. Just plunged into the deep end and swimming my way through. Is my future doomed? Or am I just being an incurable romantic?

At the risk of all those rotten tomatoes landing in my comment section, I'd still say: People, save that money, take some time off to sit down and look into each other’s eye, hold that hand, smile, hug and kiss. And, when you are miles away, just call. Priceless ways of working wonders on that mind and heart.

PS: For those of you who think I’m being extremely nyaka, go screw your happiness.

Sunday, November 26, 2006


Something inside this head has snapped. And it isn’t a very nice feeling. The world and its inhabitants seem a distant lot. To hell with it.

Detachment rules.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

MOS code

Liz Hurly’s reportedly carrying 13 outfits for her wedding while Lindsay Lohan changed thrice at a friend’s b’day party. These are celebrities and their tantrums. Then there are dappers like my N, who need to change with the times of the day, especially when on a holiday. You’ll never catch him in the same clothes throughout the day. And, it’s not just for the photos, because he’s rarely in them, preferring to click us. Sample this. If we’re going out for a long weekend, which means max three days, N necessarily carries at least 9 shirts/t-shirts, 2 pairs of jeans, a pair of cargoes and a pair of cool linen chinos. Need I say what size of suitcase I need to carry if it’s for 7-10 days?

These are people suffering from Multiple Outfit Syndrome (MOS). They just can’t be happy with what they wear. The Adman that he is, N’s extremely brand conscious and nitpicks while shopping for his clothes. Oh, and it can’t be just the brand. It has to be the right colour combinations, the cut and the style. And of course, he knows best, the long and the short of them. And funnily enough, the man has a body that fits into a 38, a 40 and a 42 size with equal panache. Ok, I’m talking about the casuals here, the branded formals are almost always 40. But if he falls in love with something that he must own, size doesn’t really matter. He manages to fit in, and the snugger, the better.

The story was quite different a little more than a decade ago. (P sits down with her coffee, to tell a long story. )

When we first started dating, or let’s put it this way, when I left him no option but to date me, when he was this bespectacled JUDEan , the norm was a full-sleeved semi-formal shirt, properly tucked in to a pair of jeans or semi-formal trousers. I’d never, yes, never seen him in a half sleeved shirt, torn jeans or any thing else that could be remotely considered cool and casual. Dressing down for him meant at most, a kurta and jeans!

You know what they say about a man being known by the company he keeps, right? So it was my schemes and his brain. A lethal combo that drove him all the way to MICA and, that my friends, was the turning point of this match. In two years, there emerged an ad rookie. Beau Brummel knew all about brands and their case histories, how to position, manage and market them. I gradually found out, he even wore some brands on his sleeve. The man had fallen prey to his own profession and with age, the sense of dressing has acquired a style and class that is most often envied more than it is admired.

The wardrobe which used to have only whites, off whites, pale and pastel shades, solids and checks, now has almost every hue and shades of them from a dark purple to an ultra marine blue in checks, stripes, geometric patterns, floral prints and other weird and stylish prints. Oh and the sleeves have gotten shorter too.

In trousers and jeans, he’s moved over from the staid pleated to the flat fronts, chinos and the cargoes. I see there are courdroys, frayed, faded but not tattered jeans, cargoes with 6-8 pockets ( haven’t tried figuring out why he needs that many) and white linen trousers, which I firmly believe look more like pyjamas, but am told, it’s the ‘in’ thing. Sigh! In short, he hates admitting it, but considers himself quite a Candy man, and knows more about men’s fashion than even my Dad, now!

Ladies and gentlemen, in the last few years, he’s spent a sizeable fortune on clothes and needless to say that he occupies, 3/4ths of the three wardrobes, with G and I just about managing to wrangle a couple of shelves each.

But recently, the man’s not been fitting into his pants, thanks to a bulging paunch. Considering he’s a teetotaler, don’t ask me where he got that from. Something he’s always hated and the only thing he’s been particular not to acquire all this while. He’s been complaining about it for sometime, but of course the fat annual fees at Talwalkar’s is only accumulating interest for the gym, because Beau Brummel has absolutely no time to indulge in such luxuries, bijee man that he is. For the first time today, I heard him resign to fate, caressing his little potbelly, “I hope this is truly a sign of prosperity.”

Inshallah! Amen!
I hope so too, Dude.

Friday, November 17, 2006


G wants wings so she can fly. Green wings (Environmentalist, that she already is), to be precise. This emanated from a conversation that went something like this:

“Mumma, see mermaid" (pointing to its picture on her fancy glass).

I smile and give a pseudo-excited look with a ‘Hmm’ while trying to shove a spoonful into her mouth.

“Mermaids fly in the water?” (never imagined, but worth a thought now)

“No, Baby, they swim under water.”

“Then, only birds fly?”

With a ear-to-ear grin, I say “Yeesss”. (Hoping I had sealed the Q&A session and could get on with the never-ending dinner.)

“Why do they fly?” (Oh no!)

“Because they have wings.” Then a quick quiz, “What else can fly? Tell me, tell me.”

“Plane (With a very distinct Duh, Mumma! look). You can also fly, Mumma?”

“No, I don’t have wings.”

“Why don’t you have wings?”

(Err ummm…) "Because God didn’t give me." (Ok, P, gerrout of the Standard mode and get a wee bit more creative now, willya?) I need to be very careful what I tell G, because, the Resident Lawyer decides to catch us off-guard and cross check every once in a while on certain circumstantial arguments provided to her. And the midget has an elephantine memory. So God help you if you retract or tweak your arguments.

G, very authoritatively, “Tell God to give you wings and me also(sic). OK? I want green wings. You get blue and Puppa will take red! OK?" (shaking the index finger at me)

"OK, Dahlin'!"

Wings in myriad hues to take us all where we want to go. How I wish, such wishes were granted. Philosophy was never my cuppa, so instead of indulging in it, I’ve been wondering how to grant G her wish, indulgent Mom that I am. The first thought was to call the Fleeting Fairy for a solution. But she has exams and papers to deal with. Then I considered my very own, 911, the Lilting Lark. But she, I thought would be busy making pasta or solving her anagrams. So wracked my utterly non-creative, useless brain for a change. But alas! I don’t have a green dupatta to make-do with. (Digression: In fact, my wardrobe is devoid of green. I hate the colour as much as I hate the smell of a rose.) So for now, I settle on the wings of poesy (the oft-recited nursery rhymes) and take her on flights of fancy either on Alladin’s magic carpet or on the Prince’s pristine white horseback.

Nanny Ogg and Granny Weatherwax are waiting in the wings with the broomsticks.

(P.S.: I just realised, our blogs are becoming very incestuous)

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Passion fruit

The dancing Toots has revived many a fond memory and I am not sure, I like it. I don't like it simply because I miss it. Once upon a time, it was a passion. The term passion, and its adverb passionately, often express a very strong predilection for any pursuit, or object of taste -- a kind of enthusiastic fondness for anything. -- Cogan.

It wasn't just strong, it was almost a compulsion, a very thin line separated the obsession from the passion. I haven't a clue why my insightful (almost psycho, she just knew everything) Ma admitted me to a traditional Bharatnatyam dancing school the same day I started pre-school at two-and-a-half years. But since then, except for a brief break due to a stomach injury, I have trained in Bharatnatyam for 15 long and painful years; every Wednesday, come rain, sunshine, high fever or whathaveyou I'd go on my weekly pilgrimage to Mastermoshai to exercise my skills in Bhava, Rasa, Tala and Natyam - the core that comprise Bharatanatyam.

Mastermoshai wasn't a very hard task master but a sweet old man who knew and recognised talent. Once I’d grown out of the initial infatuation for the jingling sound of the ghungroo, as a toddler, he initiated me into my first mudras and the first steps of Aduvu. From that day onwards, I happened to be his blue-eyed girl. In the early years, it was more the enthusiasm to learn something new, a little about peer pressure and a fancy dream about being a star performer, someday.

I wouldn't just go to class to learn the steps, it was not just about dancing, but observing the others ( the seniors, really) and making mental notes of improvising certain postures, because the mudras and the aduvus were sacrosanct. They were what comprised nritta, that is dance in its purest form. But it was natya (the dramatic art, a language of gestures, poses and mime) and nritya (a combination of nritta and natya) where one had the scope to develop one's skills as a dancer. That's where my greater interests lay.

With each passing year, as I progressed from Alaripu to Jatisvaram (thanks Lali) and mastered more complicated steps of Shabdam, Varnam and Padam it was more about internalizing my ability to express happiness, anger, sorrow, fear and the works. I realized, they all happened rather naturally. I could do the various steps in my head ten times over while Ma was screaming her guts out at me for not living up to some expectation or another. I could break into Jatisvaram when I was depressed and I’d soon feel better.

By the time I had flexed every muscle in my body and used every part of my face to delineate Tillana, dance had become more a way of life, a spiritual expression of corporeal angst.

I've been on stage since the age of 4 or maybe younger, I don't remember, and from the photographs I recall now, I'd always be centrestage, which meant all eyes would naturally be on me and that I guess impelled me to know, to learn and to imbibe every step that much better.

It’s been over 15 years now since I even attempted a mudra or an aduvu. Years ago, back then in the Jurassic age of classical dancing, I was a bit of a puritan (and a snoot), even as a child, since I looked down upon those gyrating movements that were passed off as dance in Bollywood flicks. Over the years, I have grown immune to the Karishma Kapoors, Kimi Katkars and more recently Rakhi Sawants and Isha Koppikars of the world. But, today, I am forced to do the same shakin’ your booties stuff at sundry discotheques or parties as they do. I don’t like disappointing friends. So I stand amidst the crowd and shift in my shoes.

Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against modern dance, as long as it has tala, laya, that is it’s rhythmic and graceful. But alas, even those basics are often not there. The TV show Nach Baliye is a classic example to the point. There are couples with two left feet, who can’t dance to save their lives and yet, they are there on stage, making royal fools of themselves, shamelessly so. I feel angry when I see such stuff.

Before anger consumes me, I should end this long rant. But, let me tell you, “I could’ve danced all night, and still have asked for more.”

Thursday, November 09, 2006


Ladies, beautiful ladies, good looking ladies, very good looking ladies, smart ladies, damned smart ladies, I am reliably informed that today be International Very Good Looking Damn Smart Woman's Day. So come my bevy of fellow VGLDS women, let us virtually gather here to celebrate our special day.

Dress code: Sexiest dress in your wardrobe- noodlestraps, strapless, backless, halternecks, mini skirts, shorts, the works. This is your chance to flaunt your booty and show it all. (Oh yeah, the mothers of 1,2 or more, do tuck in those tummies with a good fitting corsette, honeybuns.)
Accessorise self adequately. Get those Louis Vuitton, Liz Claiborne, Prada, GAP bags and shoes to match your dresses. (yeah, yeah yeah just go, ransack the guy's wallet, his money, credit cards et al.) Oh and please, do get the right tone of foundation. White, patchy faces look ghastly.
Once you are here, we can start comparing notes and check out who's the smartest of us all, ok?

Cuisine: Men and booze. We shall make steaks, sizzlers, sausages and mince meat of them and wash them down with vodka (orange-twist, anyone?), bloody mary , tequila shots and sex-on-the-beach.

See you soon, babes!

Men: good looking, smart or otherwise, you are requested to escort the aforementioned women and patiently await their return in your respective cars (Do hire the best looking ones, please, if you don't own one yet) .

Monday, November 06, 2006

I have company

I have just too many things craving for my attention; too many ideas dying to be shaped into something remotely readable and too many people seeking my company. And here I am just not knowing how to handle such celebrity status vonly. First, I try to prioritise my work, then the people I want to give company to and finally try sorting out the ideas. The work, has to be done, there isn't an option there. The better half and best quarter must be given ample quality time, so the ideas can play "Me first" and chew my brain till I find some time for them.
For now, of course, all eyes are on the newest member of my extended family. My good friend R gave birth to this bonny 3.8 kg dude on Nov 2. A cherub he is, with swollen pink cheeks, a saintly smile and chinky eyes. A mini monk now, till the tail grows ;) In the meantime, a raging debate has ensued in the confines of the hospital room on who he resembles - "the lower half of the face is like R's Mom, the upper half like S" was one line of thought. The other authoritative line was "looks just like S" (including the height. S is a six footer and the baby's really tall,too) And amidst all the argument and counter-argument, our man sleeps peacefully without a care in the world. He might as well finish his quota now, before the world descends upon him.

G's most excited about R'baby (the whole family's identity revolves around my friend R- R'mashi, R'kaku, R'mamma and so on). She of course wanted a baby girl, so her initial reaction was " Naaa, it's a baby girl!" and she insisted on referring to R'baby as "she". After some patient explaining, she agreed to accept 'him' and play with trains and cars with him and initiate him into the world of SPD, Pokemon and Spiderman. She was busy choosing gifts for the baby at the toy shop the other day - dinosaurs, rattles and such like. Now we must visit R baby everyday to monitor his daily progress. The most delightful part of my daily routine, the only one i really look forward to, apart from meeting G after a painful and gruelling 11 hours, everyday.

R'baby hasn't yet been christened. But he was born in the wee hours of the "Don". Like it or not R, I did warn you, if it's Nov 2nd, it just has to be... the one and only... Bad Shah! (evil grin)

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Birthday bumps

I took G to a birthday party on Saturday. An old college friend’s son’s. Needless to say then, it was a gathering of probashi bangalis at the town’s hottest party spot, Pizza Corner. I’ve mentioned before, I love their party organizing skills. Nothing short of impeccable. Long live outsourcing! So, while the friendly pizzaboys and girls conducted the games for the kids and handed out the winner’s gifts, the accompanying parents huddled together to talk shop.

There was a clear divide between the hep Bong and not-so-hep non-Bong Moms. There was that Cosmo-educated Mom who looked almost ready to replace the cover babe from the magazine; the seasoned jean-clad mother of two, with a figure those 22-year olds would die for; then there was the non-Bong Mom in sequined capris who first wanted to know where my hubby worked, based on which she’d decide how snooty she would be next time she met me on the road; there was the paavam, trying-to-be-hep Amma and finally, there was the quintessential Bong Ma.

The conversation of the hep lot essentially veered around the recently released movies, aka Don, Dor and Devil Wears Prada. (I swear I didn’t make that alliteration up!) and there was actually someone who hadn’t seen the original. So obviously she “quite liked” the new Don as did her kids. Thankfully, everyone else acquiesced the remake was F’all (ok so this is my language, because they were all prim and propah, unlike me). And that SRK sucks. I was impressed muchly by such sublime intelligence of the most superfluous Moms. Coincidentally( ok, so there isn’t anything called coincidence, big deal), none of us have watched the other two. Promptly, Yours Truly floated the idea of a Mom’s Day Out to catch both the movies. Sadly, both have gone from the theatres, but seeds of a MDO have been sowed (evil grin), nice and deep into the kitschy crania. And while they were planning the day out, I picked up sound bytes of “No, now they hab pheeneeshed that, they hab staarted counting huwith their phingaars.” I turned around to see her animatedly showing how to count with the fingers to the other equally engrossed two Non-Bong non-hep Moms. “They are now counting backwards, sebhen, seex, phaibe, phour, like this…” The hep Moms too caught the drift of the conversation and giggled and smirked condescendingly at their neighbours, faces conscientiously turned to the wall. In the meantime, talks moved further on to homework and such like which I chose to ignore to save my sanity.

Amazing though, hep Moms or no, the boys all go to the same school, the most renowned school in this city of soon to be has-beans.

As for self, felt quite out of place, honestly, since I belonged to neither group and had only a pretty Cinderella-esque daughter to dote on, while I mentally noted points for this blog. Whattosay, I’m just lovin’ it. To be at your service, that is.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Holiday Hullaballoo

Holidays are the most anticipated few days of our lives, no matter which stage of life we are in. Of course, the connotation of a holiday has evolved over the decades quite disproportionately with our disposable incomes, but we shall not grudge that, shall we?

As school kids, summer and pujo vacations, more than the winter one, were the few months of freedom we desperately longed for. And of course, planning for a vacation was the only topic of discussion at the dinner table or during a drive to a boring relative. At that stage, the execution of the plan was of course, the parents’ dull job and I was happy to have accomplished mine by merely suggesting a preferred locale. Not that I always got a chance to do that either. But never really cared much as long as I knew I didn’t have to stay home in Calcutta for at least 10 of the 30 days! And those were the best days of my life! (Please note that we were angels as kids, never demanding such things like a resort with swimming pool, AC, TV etc. during a holiday). So whether it was closer to home in Darjeeling, Kalimpong or Hazaribag or a little further off to Agra, Nainital or Ranikhet or even Goa, I have wonderful memories of each vacation. Over the years, of course, I started getting bored of accompanying them on holidays so summer holidays were invariably pilgrimages to cousins in Delhi (yes, 5 weeks of the scorching summer were spent in utter bliss at the then happening places. Don’t ask for details please that was 20 years ago!!)

I stopped going on holidays once cousins left Delhi and life found other excitement in creatures such as boyfriends. Vacations were the only time when we could find friendly alibis in even our worst enemies and go for movies or spend time together over never ending games of Scrabble (yes, in those days life wasn’t all about ball games, you see, so we were happy to indulge in sundry boardgames) or Boggle( again, very mind boggling stuff!)

Post marriage, holidays have been great fun. Family holidays have been few, in fact just that one to Goa and another Down Under. But we have a close knit group of friends who we go out with and so far, touchwood, each one, whether it was to Gadiara (West Bengal) or to Bangkok, has been a riot. The reason I’ve enjoyed myself to the hilt, I realized, is because I wasn’t the one planning any of these holidays! One of the friends was with Thomas Cook so we really just had to land up at the destination and the rest were very well taken care of. Tension-free, adulterated fun is all that mattered.

This time it’s a little different. The friends have decided to descend upon us, in namma Bengaluru. And from here, they want to go on a “holiday” together. Having been made hosts, we’re expected to organise the tours and sightseeing plans. And to be the perfect hosts, all bookings must be done well in advance to avoid any disappointment, especially since the period of travel is between December 22 and 26. They couldn’t have chosen a better “peak season”. So the last few days have been spent on surfing the Net for the best possible package since someone wants the forest, another wants the hills, and yet another the beaches! Never had to contend with such variety. South India does provide all these and more, but to chalk out a route map and then book the hotels all within a given budget? The Planning Director has been very proactive, especially since they are, strictly speaking, his friends and their respective wives. But there’s been some shared responsibilities, especially the hotel surfing and booking. The route map’s chalked out, thankfully, and no, we’re not pandering to everyone’s tastebuds. Just not possible. They get what we give. And I’m just short of going completely bonkers. The more the options, the more the confusion. If the photo on the net is decent enough, a phone call proves just how inefficient the service will be. Not only do I not want to go on a holiday, I don’t even want to play host now. But for the sheer fun of it, I don’t want to miss out on it either. So let’s just go on a holiday guys, and the more unplanned and adventurous it is, the better it will turn out, trust me on this! (pleading, with folded hands).

PS: This is my first post on my recently acquired new toy: a laptop. Thanks to my company, they thought I needed one to work from home. Ya right! They have no clue of the work I’ll now be doing from the cozy workstation. So there, my Angels, satiate those curious minds;)

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Time Will Tell

Time heals. And can some wise soul please tell me just how? Is it a balm or is Time the doc with the magical hands that every patient desires to touch and feel? If he's a doc, has someone bothered to check his credentials? So far, He hasn't healed any of my wounds. Not those my parents inflicted, neither those the sons of bitches caused, not the ones so called friends imposed and certainly not those that were meted out in the name of love. These wounds keep oozing pus every once in a while and those mental band-aids soak, so I change them and stick on fresh ones. But for how long?

Can't I be stricken with selective amnesia, at least?

There are theories and there are theories on Time the healer, the ravages of time, on wasting it and managing it. Have you ever stopped to think just how controversial they all are. If it's a healer, why does it plunder, in the first place? If it is wasted, then why bother to manage it? No seriously, I'm as boggled by the theory of the healer as by spiels on how to manage time effectively so you can fit in the world's chores and yours and yet hit the bed at midnight with a smile on your lips and a rush of adrenalin in your body, ready to take on the same circus next day and the day after.
How long, just how long can I keep the facade going?
Time will tell, I guess.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Do Not Disturb

I’m thoroughly enjoying my new found status of a superwoman. So, I’d appreciate if you don’t come looking for a new post here, every once in a while. Writing posts, sadly, isn’t part of my joblist, nor can I wangle time out to write one for your reading pleasure.

However, if anybody needs tips on housekeeping, cooking, taking care of a three-year old (and that includes feeding, changing clothes, cleaning poo, doing jigsaws, practising writing numbers and alphabets, reading stories) and managing a full time job, look no further.

I shall be happy to dole out free advice. Come be my guest, till I post again.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006


Secrets. We thrive on them. Nothing makes us lonelier than our closely guarded ones. Sometimes there’s more fear than delight in them. But the sinful pleasures of a secret are rather delectable. So we all have some to give us company in our various moods.

As kids, the excitement of sharing the silliest of secrets far superceded our wisdom to lock it up in the chest and lose the key. The Secret Seven series added gallons of fuel to the untamable fire. And we used to have our “secret” meetings in attics or on terrace tops, which sometimes entailed dangerous trekking. But our fluttering hearts then knew no fear. The “secret” plans hatched for no intimidating purpose, were rarely ever implemented, because it was the process that mattered, not the outcome.

In our adolescence, the secrets became a tad graver as we learnt to distinguish between the silly and not so silly things in life. Accordingly, we chose to share or not to share them with our buddies. Of course, the “best friend” knew of them all. Secrets were usually about the dudes we were eyeing, or secretly wished to date (Of course I didn’t know a thing about it then!) and such like. The first boyfriend was a well-guarded secret from parents. The clandestine meetings held, romantic billets exchanged and sundry phoney-calls were secrets only close buddies knew of.

As social dynamics change and age catches up with us, I realize we have more secrets to keep rather than to tell or share. Some our own, some shared with us for safekeeping.

Within a given social circle again, there are grades of secrecy. Some are family secrets, best kept away from prying neighbours and snoopy extended family members; a slip of tongue and you’ve had it. There are other secrets that are shared for the sole purpose of it spreading like wild fire which n. no of fire engines cannot douse. (To hell with the world!)

Then of course, there are those that must necessarily be kept from the spouse. And please don’t jump at me with lectures on honesty in relationships and whathaveyou. Go, Look into any man's heart you please, and you will always find, in every one, at least one black spot which he has to keep concealed- Henrik Ibsen. You do ogle at a goodlooking hulk or a hot chick when travelling, walking, jogging or at the gym and now you even have your virtual toyboys/sugar daddies (thanks Lali). At times, for a fleeting moment, certain sinful desires do flit across your mind. It’s only human. You don’t have to go and talk about it. Some things are best not told to the significant other. Hence, they too qualify as “secrets”. I’m only promoting peace, if you get my drift. If you have to share it, come tell me, you'll feel far lighter;)

Personally, I’m the most generous person on earth and a good samaritan. Therefore, I believe in sharing my wealth, be it intangible stuff like information or tangible goods such as my money, rather than keeping them. Besides, as the great Mr Shaw said, The only secrets are the secrets that keep themselves. So why to take tension only?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


I think I'll just cease to exist. Too much I don't know about. And the more I get to know, the more amazed I am.
Mobile phones now have a new kind of cover I'm told. And guess what the covers are known as? Hold your breath ( Yes Lali, do your
pranayama :P)! Condom Covers.
So much info packed into those two words.
Did you know, your cellphone was male, did you? No, I didn't either. But now I do.
I now also know:
Why we women just can't do without one;
Why we are oh sooo emotionally and physically attached to one;
Why more often than not we are so busy fingering, smooching and caressing one;
Why we just can't take our eyes off a goodlooking one;
Why it invariably dies on us just when we have some interesting gossip to pass on;
Why we can never find it, just when we need it;
Why we get so irritated with their ringtones;
Why we get bored of one so easily;
Why we need to change one so often;
Now I know!

Just how much can it really cover up? All that MMS'ing prone to spreading STD, eh?
Iye maane, what next?

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Dangling conversation

Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high….Where words come out from the depth of truth…

I’m no patriot, thank you. I have a habit of taking words at their face value and making them suit my purpose. These words are just some of them. I’m told I have a tongue sharper than the sharpest knife and a mind so transparent that you can see through it. Hence, I call a spade a spade, a bitch a bitch and an ass an ass, sometimes with a smile on my lips, sometimes gruffly and at other times with a straight face. Hello, I am an extrovert. What did you expect? Some interpret it as tactlessness, others think I’m too brusque while there are still others who think I’m conceited, hence condescending; and my fistful of really close people, don’t think, they know. They know me for what I’m worth, thankfully.

Unfortunately, the number of people I cannot hold in my fist is an overwhelming majority. The miserable sods! More often than not, my humour falls flat on them, they choose to misunderstand me and then fabricate vicious yarns that are delectably pickled as they trickle down from one to another, irrevocably complicating matters. And all this post a personal chat or some such.

But this is the age of virtual communication. And most conversations are happily left dangling. People talk to near, dear and loved ones through Skype, as much as we chat with total strangers, through MSM &Yahoo messengers, over Gtalk or in virtual chatrooms! They, in fact, talk, chat, flirt, even fornicate online these days! (Fuck leaky condoms, someone tell those latex manufacturers, it can't get safer than this!) They have the license to avoid, ignore, scream at, kiss, hug, and even kill:P just by keying in the right words, with little or no emotional scruples whatsoever and no shelf-life. So, if you are mad at someone or totally in awe of another one day, you can kiss and make up or boot the infatuation out the next day. There is hardly anything personal in things virtual. And, the intonation of written words is easy to misinterpret. If the way you talk can stir up a hornet’s nest, imagine the damage that a written word can cause, if misinterpreted.

It’s happened with me. Something written in good humour has been taken to heart and nasty emails have landed in my unsuspecting mailbox, only to screw my Monday morning. It must be my inability to use words correctly, or my vanity. I don’t know, I just say what comes to my mind, you like it or not. I can’t say something and feel/do another. I wasn’t born Janus, so where do I get another face from? Hyprocrisy isn’t a word I take to very kindly. I am what I am. Don’t talk to me if you don’t get my sense of humour, or if you can’t withstand my honesty. The choice is yours, just like I have the right to approve or disapprove with your point of view. So let’s just:

sit and drink our coffee
Couched in our indifference,
Like shells upon the shore
You can hear the ocean roar
In The Dangling Conversation
And the superficial sighs,
The borders of our lives.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Memoirs of a Lifetime

Calcutta’d been on my mind for the past few weeks. The change that resident Calcuttans have been propagating and visitors have been singing paeans about had to be experienced first hand. But more importantly, I had to meet the people, who still find the city so eminently livable and wouldn’t dream of leaving it for any other bilious coloured pasture. So there I was on an extended weekend.

I’m back now from the most hectic but lovely trip to Calcutta. From the moment I landed, till I was ready to board the flight, again in just 72 hours I think I have lived almost three-fourths of my life with people I’d never met before and would surely have died a deprived woman, if I didn’t make the effort this time round. Oh and must add, I’m very glad certain self-important people stayed away thus saving me a whole lot of impolite and unsocial behaviour.

Sunday evening with Lali and Rimi (and please ignore her comments about my looks, she’s just a myopic child) was by far the longest and the best, on hindsight. The dark chocolate icecream, tempered with some juicy gossip rendered a divine flavour, to put it mildly. In fact, so much so that I didn’t even feel the agony, of holding the most delightful conversation in impeccable English without interspersing sentences with kancha bangla khistis (err..sorry Lali dear, am going to desist explaining that for you;) Mustn’t taar my reputation, after all:P) And honestly, what’s an adda session without lapsing into profanities:P ?

The next evening, which was supposed to be a full fledged blogmeet was almost washed out, but for the locational proximity to the Khiladi No.1 and his accomplished actress. Discussions on Tamil film actresses and common acquaintances were sufficiently spiced up with Potato wedges in sour cream dip, chicken fingers and roast chicken sandwich. Toots was guileless enough to confess ( you little hog, u;)) she could be bought over with food, so I ensured they ate, while I nibbled and listened intently to most interesting nuggets of information, which I have been sworn to secrecy about;) Hence, you die a deprived lot!

There were other non-bloggers and my regular friends who made my stay immensely enjoyable. I was so engrossed in meeting people that I actually forgot to gorge on the rolls and phuchkas, people. Urmi says, she’s prolly going to disown me for “forgetting to eat” if I don’t kill myself before that, that is. However, I didn’t forget to go and collect my little pickle gift from Lali, which I shall savour till my next trip, whenever that maybe. Thanks dear.

As you can see, I really couldn’t care for the makeover or metamorphosis the city has gone through, but there are some people there, I would love to go back to, over and over again.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Coming of Age

I have certainly come of age. Bone degeneration has set in, so says my Ortho, who's been treating me for an excruciating back and neck pain for the last few weeks and my physiotherapist makes it a point to psyche me out every morning with the possible fatalities if I don't follow the doc's advice, while she's giving me the rubs ( I admit the men make far better physios, though I had the pleasure of his rub just for a day:P).

But it's my evil little G who makes me feel really out of place these days. She educates me about the ways certain things are done, such as folding and keeping her clothes and things in order, switching on the TV and the accessories to put in a Chip & Dale CD for her exclusive viewing pleasure, and follows it up with a sweet reprimand "Tumi jaano na?"(Don't you know?). She wants to help me in my chores, prolly because she senses the effort that I need to put in even to beat an egg. "I want to help you do the 'gulgul', Mamma". The resultant mess of course is none of her business to clear up. But she wants to be carried and shown how the omelette turns out. I love the proactiveness, especially since the other half avoids the kitchen like the AIDS.

She's also my in house fashionista. Not only does she know what matches with what, right from her undies to the clothes to her shoes, she also makes sure both N & I match up to her style before we leave the house! The other day I wore one of my weird mix adn match ensembles to work (a magenta short kurti with just a simple turquoise blue floral embroidery along the V neck and turquoise blue block printed churidaar with a turquoise printed chiffon dupatta), which she didn't see as she was away at school. But when she went to pick me up from work, which is part of her daily evening routine, her first exclamation on seeing me: " Eta ki porecho? (What are you wearing?) Eta ki match kore? (taking the dupatta inher hand and pointing to my kurti) Of course, I thought it did and told her so quite nonchalantly but was promptly glared back at and told "Na. Tumi kichhu jano na." ( You know nothing) Indeed! If only I knew what is to follow. Like a wet cat I mewed and accepted my ignorance about all things fashionable. Did you even know how to wear your undies when you were three years old?

The icing on the cake came last night. N came in really late and after the initial excitement, both father and daughter plonked themselves on the bed, exhausted. N, as is his wont, started irritating her by calling her sundry silly names. Unperturbed, the toddling young lady shot back at him with "Hey Sexy"! and shut him up for good. I hope N won't ever try eve-teasing again, at least not three-year olds!

As for me, I age humbly.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Bundle of contradictions

It's been quite a while now and I assume no one's missed me. So I won't get into explanations. But if you insist, Lalita's pretty much put the reasons together, much better than I could have. The world's been busy with blasts, wars, roadblocks, oh sorry, blog blocks, public neck rubs, a prince in the pit, an unrequitted lover stabbing his lady love 36 times and confessing his crime, and the MSM was there to write about all this and much more to pander to the average taste buds; while I tried to figure out where I fit in to these scheme of things.
Fortunately or unfortunately for me, I don't fit in anywhere. That kind of leaves me pretty much orphaned and a destitute. I live in the midst of the madding crowd, but in my own little island comprising of my one and a half people. So my posts are essentially about my life, or my extended life that includes my four and a quarter friends. But one doesn't feel the need to talk about or write about it always because I assume my two and a half readers wouldn't be interested in what's bothering, motivating, inspiring or irritating me, though they may want to be a part of my happiness. But then again I assume too much, as a wise friend tells me.
The bottomline is, I don't want to write for the heck of writing and subject the world to more misery, not unless I am sure I have content I'd like to share with the world and I know the world would enjoy reading it. It is a different matter that most of the time I wonder whether I should or should not write, in the first place.
And, as I have mentioned in an earlier post, I'm horribly, terribly technologically challenged, so I haven't a clue about site trackers and whathaveyou to tell me what brings readers, if they bring any at all, to my site. So I am eternally suffering from a lack of ideas. Therefore, the best excuse is to sayI suffer from a writer's block. That conveniently takes care of my mental as well as physical disabilities. So I happily get away with it.
And right now I realise, that I am happily contradicting what I said at the very begininning, that I shall not get into explanations.
But that's how I am -- a bundle of contradictions.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Fortune Teller - II

First I was told a pleasant surprise awaits me. Considering it's been a heartbreaking Sunday for more reasons than I had anticipated and, of course, the bloody cynic that I am, I paid no heed to it. As the day progressed amidst silent tears, a tought battle to reconcile with the untimely demise of a very dear relative and final proof-reads before putting the magazine to bed, I was informed I have an unusual equipment for success and that I should use it properly. The mind boggles at the possibilities.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006


This one's via email from a friend. But we know how our Indian newspapers are, don't we?

These four classified ads appeared in a newspaper on four consecutive days. The last three hopelessly trying to correct the first day's mistake.

MONDAY: For sale - SK Shah has a sewing machine for sale. Phone 2555-0707 after 7PM and ask for Mrs Mani who lives with him cheap.

TUESDAY: Notice: We regret having erred in SK Shah's ad yesterday. It should have read, "One sewing machine for sale cheap. Phone 2555-0707 and ask for Mrs Mani, who lives with him after 7PM."

WEDNESDAY: Notice: SK Shah has informed us that he has received several annoying telephone calls because of the error we made in the classified ad yesterday.The ad stands correct as follows: "For sale - SK Shah has a sewing machine for sale. Cheap. Phone 2555-0707 after 7PM and ask for Mrs. Mani who loves with him.

THURSDAY: Notice: I, SK Shah, have no sewing machine for sale. I smashed it. Don't call 2555-0707 as I have had the phone disconnected. I have not been carrying on with Mrs. Mani. Until yesterday, she was my housekeeper but she quit.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Fortune teller

I hate these vague fortune tellers. Some wise man or whoever, tells me that "This is the time to try something new." Something new? (All excited and perked up at the thought of landing a plush job that will be make me rich and famous) Like what? But of course, nothing elucidated. The sentence doesn't even end in a fullstop. So how do we interpret an open-ended sentence like that?
Try on a new dress, sport a new hairstyle? Check out the new stylish bags or the shoes at all the friggin' malls? Try walking backwards when actually moving ahead? Sit on my desk and put my PC on the chair and
try typing with my toes? Try making dosai with tissue paper, water and Jasmine oil(that's as innovative as they can get here)? Have a relationship with a gorilla? Replace the nouns with the verbs and the adjectives with the adverbs to invent a brand new language?
How about a new job instead, Dude? One that pays phenomenally to just sit around, chat, blogsurf, and sometimes even post. But of course, no one needs a nincompoop, a dimwit and a psycho running amock polluting their workplace. So what the eff is NEW?
Maybe I should just put up a brave front and walk into some editor's room, hold him by the collar and scream JOB WANTED in his face. For I'm also told Fortune does favour the brave. Hrrmph!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Comm Comm

The population of desperate males has suddenly shot up much like our Indian stock market. And the products of their intellectual masturbation are to be seen all over the sundry Net communities - Hi5, Orkut and now Zorpia. Was dragged into the last one by the Fairy and boy o boy! Is it infested with weird creatures so eager to make "nice friendship".
Sample this: Hi Priyadarshini, How r u Doing. Hope this mail finds U in Great Spirit & Cheerfull mood. I would love to have ur friendship . I am Rakesh, I am from Bangalore, I work as software engineer in Bangalore. I am 5'9" height, well build, very sportive, fun loving, loves to enjoy my life always, loves to appreciate & respect others feelings,I'm jovial, Humurous. I love travelling, beaches, Music, dance. I am basically sports freek, loves to play lots of sports like soccer, tennis & cricket. I am presently staying alone in bangalore. I wnat to convey that UR Profile is really very attractive .I feel U r very creative & passonate abt life, & I am also the same. I am eagerly looking forward to our nice friendship. pls keep in touch, I Hope to have u as my friend . U can also mail me at my personal ID Keep in touch Priyadarshini. I am looking forward to cherrish every moment of our nice friendship. Pls feel free to call me on my mobile 98453-67225, i would love to speak to u . Take care Priyadarshini. Lots of Luv, Rakesh ( UR Admirer ). Mobile : 98453-67225

Now this is what I call a real gogetter! I have absolutely no clue what makes my profile so very attractive, considering there's no photo and almost nothing said about m'self. And, he feels I'm "creative and passonate"...FREEK[sic]! Where the eff did that come from?
Some dashing dude, this one!

I'm being subjected to another kind of mail, too. I've been invited to join the kay-matrimonial group. Please note kay is a shorter version of Kayasthya. (How keeewwl!) Boy, they've even found out my caste! Says: More Than 25000 kayastha comunity[sic] Marriageable Bio-Data of Brides and Grooms From different kayastha Sections. I mean how do these search engines assume stuff like unmarried or divorcee or married but still interested in an EMA. Talk about intruding my privacy. For those of us happily married, despite all the happiness, I don't think we'd ever wanna go that route again (at least not unless we've settled for a nice fat multi-crore alimony from the present one and signed a contract with the prospective one on the same, before walking down the aisle:P).

But as N argues, look at the brighter side of things. "Even at your age and with your hideous looks, people are interested in you," he says.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

To Sir, with Love!

Dear JAP,

Your wish is my command. So this is handpicked (ok ok, so it's Netflicked, whatever) just for your boorish pleasure.

Hope much joy comes,

Yours truly.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The Narcissist

The face it says a million words
Those eyes, that smile
Camouflage the chronic pain that corrodes the soul
Those lilting words that seldom make much sense
Yet inspire a faint ray of hope.

There's something in that face

that still weaves magic
A twinkle in those moist eyes
that lights a thousand arabian nights
And laughter in that crescent smile
that muffles the inconsolable wails of a widowed dimwit.

That face it still beckons
To share a smile and talk awhile
To dream the dreams that never were
Before saying the final goodbye.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Bag It!

Shoes and bags are things I could live and die for more than food and clothes, really. But sadly, I'm in a profession that doesn't allow me the luxury of splurging on designer shoes or bags. So I satiate my desires windowshopping. But hail the internet! The innumerabel options that it has a knack of throwing up. And how thoughtfully so.
Now I don't need to just drool and ogle at those designer bags. Look what I found!
I'm looking fr something similar for shoes too. Watch out for this space!

Brick In The Wall

G started "big school" yesterday. Since she loves going to school and has been a star at her play school throughout the last year, she's really been looking forward to experiencing the "big school". She had remembered one of the kids from the "Admission Day" and having spotted her in the crowd, was only too thrilled to go and reunite with her. They talked shop animatedly while we parents hung around waiting to be called into the respective classrooms. At last when it was time, the motley crowd trouped to the respective sections alloted to our kids. 60 kids per 20x10, accompanied by parents. The chaos is best left to your wild fertile imaginations. G was happy to be lost in the crowd with friend and that kept me happy. Class was dismissed within an hour and we were all relieved to get back to a life of veritable sanity.
Same routine today. Only it's weaning away session. So parents please leave kids at the classroom doorstep and vamoos. Easier said than done of course. By the time G and I reached the classroom I could hear howling sounds. G is most disturbed by such sounds, except when she's doing it herself and despite being an out and out extroverted friendly child, she suffers from stranger anxiety at times. So my super heroine (she was playing ring-a ring-a roses all this while with sundry other heroes and heroines, as we were waiting for assembly to get over and enter the classrooms) gets all jittery with butterflies doing the salsa in her stomach and refuses to let me go. By this time there are 58 of the 60 kids in a classroom bawling inconsolably and G's so perturbed that she thinks that 's the way one has to react. So she joins the choir! But I notice the most dreadful change. The smile in her eyes is replaced by a fear that will take a long brainwashing session. I could empathise with her since my patience was also wearing out as the bawling grew louder. I mean 60 kids, at even 1 decibel each, was way beyond the sound level my eardrums could endure and here there were brats stretching their voice chords well beyond the permissible limits. And there were two middle-aged teachers with an assistant ayah to help pacify the lot. 3 of them for three score? Fat chance!
I didn't know who was more lost...the kids or the teachers.
I just know I was disgusted. And here I thought I was putting my daughter into one of the so-called "good schools" in Bangalore. They were just psyching the kids out in the torture chambers. No wonder the kids start hating school as much as the teachers hate the kids forever. I mean there should be a limit to being greedy and making money. But as a friend rightly points out, there's absolutely no limit to being greedy, even if you are in a supposedly altruistic profession such as teaching.
Why can't they have 20-30 kids in a class which they can manage instead of bundling 60 of them and then dealing with the howling lot as if they were bloody lost kids in a Kumbh Mela? That's because they are born sadists with a mission to traumatise tots. They revel at the sight of tormented souls and take immense pleasure in further tormenting them, mentally if not physically, and psychologically for sure. They'd probably have withdrawal symptoms if they saw the kids happy and laughing from day one!
A friend's daughter told her yesterday she hates going to school because the teachers don't look happy when they come to class. I felt the same today. Why can't they at least have fresh young pleasant looking B. ED graduates, who can gell better with kids, rather than have unsexed, frustrated and sad looking middle aged women to handle more than a handful of grand children? The above might sound sexist, but kids naturally endear themselves to pleasant faces, I know from experience. And most kids these days go to a montessori school before moving on to a regular school. At the montessori, they have about 15-20 kids, each one of whom is paid individual attention and treated like human beings. The transition to a regular school then becomes traumatic for the sheer size and inhuman treatment.
Kids hate being cooped up in a room full of strangers, even if the strangers were all the same size. They should be allowed to mingle in the open and get familiar with each other, before being cooped up inside the four walls. Don't the monsters know? Even if they do, I guess they choose to ignore it, 'cause it doesn't suit their style. Huh?

I asked G after school why she cried, when she was such a brave girl and always liked going to school. Her reply ad verbatim: "Mamma, the silly kids were crying. I got scared. So I put my hand in my ear and I also cried." I did tell her she wasn't silly, so hopefully tomorrow is going to be a better day:)
I knew it was a ripple effect and also know these "experienced" teachers will tide over these teething problems with great panache. But at what cost?
We are helpless mortals. Even if we do raise our voices, and tell the teachers to leave 'em kids alone, we can do precious little to change the system. What's worse, we Indians survive DESPITE our goddamn schools and the education system.
So, we only hope the monsters who suppress our children and turn them into unthinking robots die and go to hell.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006


A surprise caller. A faint ray of hope. Can I? Shall I? Once again I'm trapped in a waiting game.

I'd stopped asking, wanting, hoping, expecting. Tried to be happy with the small pleasures of life and with my status quo. The call may change all this. Again, it may just be a courtesy call. So maybe I should stop reading too much into it and go on with life. Saturday is still a long way off.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

That will be the DAY!

You will be famous for writing a national bestseller

You are very observant and tend to be the wallflower at parties. You are intuitive and know just how to communicate everything that you are feeling to those around you.

Take this quiz at

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Life's Like That

Just gotta know: The better half is fulfilling his lifelong desire of bunking work on a Monday!! If only I knew this a couple of hours ago...
No, on second thought, I shall not grudge the little momma's boy his day out with the parents. I'm better off at work!

Friday, May 26, 2006

Women in public loos

This one's courtesy my good friend S. I just had to share it with you.

My mother was a fanatic about public restrooms. When I was a little
girl, she'd take me into the stall, show me how to wad up toilet paper and
wipe the seat. Then she'd carefully lay strips of toilet paper to cover the seat.

Finally, she'd instruct, "Never, NEVER sit on a public toilet seat Then
she'd demonstrate "The Stance," which consisted of balancing over the
toilet in a sitting position without actually letting any of your flesh make
contact with the toilet seat.

That was a long time ago. Now, in my "mature" years, "The Stance" is
excruciatingly difficult to maintain.

When you have to visit a public bathroom, you usually find a line of
women, so you smile politely and take your place. Once it's your turn, you
check for feet under the stall doors. Every stall is occupied. Finally, a door
opens and you dash in, nearly knocking down the woman leaving the stall.
You get in to find the door won't latch. It doesn't matter.

The dispenser for the modern "seat covers" (invented by someone's Mom,
no doubt) is handy, but empty. You would hang your purse on the door hook,
if there were one, but there isn't - so you carefully but quickly drape it
around your neck, (Mom would turn over in her grave if you put it on the
FLOOR!), yank down your pants, and assume "The Stance."
In this position your aging, toneless thigh muscles begin to shake.
You'd love to sit down, but you certainly hadn't taken time to wipe the seat
or lay toilet paper on it, so you hold "The Stance."

To take your mind off your trembling thighs, you reach for what you
discover to be the empty toilet paper dispenser. In your mind, you can hear your
mother's voice saying, "Honey, if you had tried to clean the seat, you
would have KNOWN there was no toilet paper!" Your thighs shake more.

You remember the tiny tissue that you blew your nose on yesterday - the
one that's still in your purse. That would have to do. You crumple it in the
puffiest way possible. It is still smaller than your thumbnail.

Someone pushes open your stall door because the latch doesn't work. The
door hits your purse, which is hanging around your neck in front of your
chest and you and your purse topple backward against the tank of the toilet.
"Occupied!" you scream, as you reach for the door, dropping your
precious, tiny, crumpled tissue in a puddle on the floor, lose your footing
altogether, and slide down directly onto the TOILET SEAT. It is wet of

You bolt up, knowing all too well that it's too late. Your bare bottom
has made contact with every imaginable germ and life form on the uncovered
seat because YOU never laid down toilet paper - not that there was any, even
if you had taken time to try.

You know that your mother would be utterly appalled if she knew,
because, you're certain, her bare bottom never touched a public toilet seat
because, frankly, dear, "You just don't KNOW what kind of diseases you could

By this time, the automatic sensor on the back of the toilet is so
confused that it flushes, propelling a stream of water like a fire hose that
somehow sucks everything down with such force that you grab onto the toilet
paper dispenser for fear of being dragged in too. At that point, you give up.

You're soaked by the spewing water and the wet toilet seat. You're
exhausted. You try to wipe with a gum wrapper you found in your pocket
and then slink out inconspicuously to the sinks. You can't figure out how to
operate the faucets with the automatic sensors, so you wipe your hands
with spit and a dry paper towel and walk past the line of women, still
You are no longer able to smile politely them.

A kind soul at the very end of the line points out a piece of toilet
paper trailing from your shoe. ( Where was that when you NEEDED it??) You yank
the paper from your shoe, plunk it the woman's hand and tell her warmly,
"Here, you just might need this."

As you exit, you spot your hubby, who has long since entered, used and
left the men's restroom. Annoyed, he asks, "What took you so long, and why is
your purse hanging around your neck?"

. . . This is dedicated to women everywhere who deal with a public
restroom (rest??? you've got to be kidding!!). It finally explains to the men
what really does take us so long. It also answers their other commonly asked
question about why women go to the restroom in pairs. It's so the other
gal can hold the door, hang onto your purse and hand you Kleenex under the door.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Bongo Bodhu

Amazed at myself. The "other" parents are here and I'm at my incorrigible best. (I don't like the word in-laws for its menacingly wicked connotation. After all the horror stories I hear from friends and family about the lot, I consider mine demi-gods).
Cooked fulkopir dalna and kassa mangsho last night and scored some brownie points on the very first day. ( Bapi is the quintessential Bangal with very sharp taste buds and very little appreciation for anything good. So, when he compliments my cooking, especially kassa mangsho, I consider it an Oscar. Pat pat pat on my back) This morning I abandoned the bed by 7.30, made tea (one just liquor, the other with milk), served them with biscuits and while they sipped on the hopefully well made tea(no effusive appreciation, so just assuming), I packed N's and my lunch of left over mutton and rice.
Hold your breath. Then I decided to cook at least one course for the lunch I won't be there for. So Mochar ghonto it was! Did take some tips from Mamoni, but that was just to make her feel good;) Some tricks of the trade.
Before leaving for work, ensured a fairly decent breakfast of toast, omlette, milk and bananas was ready to be served.
The quintessential Indian bouma! Let me enjoy while this lasts!
Anyone needs expert advice? You know where to reach me.

PS: I forgot to mention that in between all this, I even ironed N's shirt, which he wanted to carry to office (and change into before a new business pitch later today) and ensured G brushed her teeth before nibbling on food.

Good Morning!

Announcement of the morning: A fairly important visitor will be dropping in, so I'd appreciate if you could keep your workstations clean.

Rustle rustle rustle of paper( love the sound of crumpling paper), a pronounced hustle and bustle all over office, stashing scrap paper in bins and magazines into the already overstuffed drawers, cleaning the tabletop with a piece of paper....there, spotlessly clean and all dressed to kill the visitor!!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

The case of the vanishing VIP

I hate VIP visits. Not just because it throws public life completely out of gear, but also because personal plans go haywire, thanks to professional hazards, delays, traffic ( we're talking Bangalore here, people) and of course the VIP's whims and fancies!

Having quietly moved away from MSM, I thankfully haven't had to be a part of this chaos for a few years now. Until I finally bit a bait (yes yes kicking myself for it) and volunteered (out of sheer curiosity) to be a part of it. Once the VIP's itenarary was wangled out of the horse's (or was it the hippo's?) mouth, a press meet followed by cocktails and dinner was the first "event" agreed upon. After all, the VIP had a very very hectic schedule that involved travelling from one end of Bangalore to the other end and beyond(impromptu decision). And we unfortunate in-city travellers know just how back-breaking, asphyxiating and sweaty such travel can be. But the press had to be given a time for its share of precious sound bytes, the potential exclusive interview, photo opps and the works. So it was set for post lunch (around 4?). Then along the day a slew of SMSs threatened to choke the poor cell as the VIP suddenly decided to head farther off from city limits "on work" and was quite sure wouldn't be back in the city before 9pm. (Of course we knew better than that) So the press meet was promptly called off. But gluttons and suckers for a free booze that we journos are infamous for, we still hoped the VIP could make it to the cocktails and dinner and looked forward in hope, while attending to other inconsequential assignments.

As the chances of an exclusive with the VIP grew bleaker, we quickly grabbed the only available opportunity for a dinner, yes, yes, with free booze, and happily headed home.

We do not blame the VIP. After all, the person is only an office bearer, slogging butt off doing greater good for greater people.

Lessons learnt:
1. Curiosity killed the cat

2. Never believe a VIP
3. Hope sucks and drains
4. Go get a life, babe!

PS: I'm assuming my handful of intelligent readers don't think VIP stands for the obvious. Go figure!

(Un)Made in waiting

Anxiety kills.
Curb excitement.
Wait again.
Raincheck later.
Albatross (hangs motionless upon the air)...

Friday, May 12, 2006

City of Joy

Kolkata's just got a fresh coat of red paint and it looks every bit the quitessential City of Joy. It's party time in the Red Citadel. While citizens indulge in another round of holi, the Buddha can't stop laughing, as kudos and compliments flow in from all parts of the country. In all humility, the politico-litterateur bhadrolok just smiles and says "It's the people's verdict and I'm happy." Of course, the people are also happy. Who wouldn't be with loads of shopping malls, clean, well maintained parks, lovely roads, well organised traffic, warm hospitality and fewer bandhs? He's also happy that Kolkata's finally being recognised as a prospective industrial centre and surely welcomes "more FDI and domestic investments." But he wants to get his basics right first. Hence he has identified areas well below the poverty line (according to him 20% of Kolkata's population is below the PL) and aims to provide them with the bare minimum needs for a decent existence and is trying to take agriculture to the next level - agri business. It's like poetry in motion.
I don't understand politics, nor have the desire to, but I give credit where it's due. And will not allow personal prejudices to veil my genuine happiness. As long as I lived there,I hated it with a passion. Now that I am only an irregular visitor, it feels better. So here's to more of Kolkata. And kudos to all those who are making it rock!

PS: Now can we please have the CM put his best foot forward and play a full blooded shot to help the Prince win back his lost glory? We can't let him go down without a fight, or vanish into oblivion whimpering. The elections are over, peacefully. Now let the war begin.
Ok, so this was the whole reason for the post. Selfish? I have an agenda? Yes, go SUE me!

PPS: I still don't believe I wrote this post. It must be the weather, or excess nicotine:P

Games we play

Last evening was one to cherish for a long long time.
On returning home and freshening up, G as usual insisted I sit on the floor and play with her. So it began with Recognise your Alphabets. Once she was convinced about all the shapes of the alphabets and what each denoted, we had to move on. So it was Catch Me If You Can. From the living room to the bedroom, over the bed, in a somersault, down again and into the other room, giggling and screaming all the while and finally..."cauuught you..cauught you..." Repeat same a couple of times and then plonk on the bean bag, huffing and puffing and tongue sticking out. "Let's play something else." Ummmm, ok let's play Hop Scotch. So G and I, played it on the square-tiled spartek floor, tumbling over one another. It was fun but not all that fun. So we decided to change over to Hide and Seek. Behind the door and under the bed, cramping up in the narrow sliver of space between the bed and the wall, in the loo, till we both tire out and call it quits.
Can't remember when I exercised such a lot or had so much fun playing games. We chilled out and channel surfed, and stopped in our tracks at Star Movies. It was showing There's something about Mary, surely the icing on the evening's priceless moments. So we watched, we giggled and we rolled on the floor laughing.

An evening wonderfully spent. Love playing Mommy, mommy!

Thursday, May 11, 2006

May showers

The weather in Bangalore right now is driving me crazy. Regular as a clockwork, the storm comes bursting in at 4pm, shaking the trees violently off their roots, sending the pedestrians in a helpless tizzy and dragging me mercilessly off my chair into the balcony. To excite, to impress, to palpate, to disarm and grab the vulnerable me with its odylic force into a coital compromise. An incurable romantic that I anyways am, it's only worsening my case. Sigh!

Food, good food

Unfortunately for N, it's a waste to take me out, especially to eat. Before you jump at me, this is not to say, I'm indifferent to food or don't enjoy eating out. It's just that I'm not the quintessential Bengali khadyo-roshik and am such a small eater, he says it's just not worth it. I love to eat, especially continental and chinese food. And more recently, I've become a huuuuge fan of Korean and Thai cuisine. But to be true to myself, it's ever since I associated myself with N (a self-proclaimed foodie, prolly only second to U) among the many good things that he has tried, mostly in vain, to inculcate in me, appreciating food is the only thing that I have paid serious attention to. And, must admit, have benefitted from it. My food intake has also improved a tad bit but is inversely proportional to the effects on petite self. I can roll the food a little longer in my mouth, chew the lamb till I feel every spice in the juice and even ponder over every layer of the Tiramisu. I still have a long, long way to go considering a Japanese meal with Sushi et al awaits me tomorrow and a whole lot more over the weekend. But it feels good to be able to exercise the tastebuds ever so often, considering that's the only exercise I've been religiously doing anyway for all my living years. As N would love to say "I told you, if only you listened to me more often, life would be so much better." Alas Dude, God gave me a motor mouth that works far better than the ear.

PS: I'm a fairly decent cook, so that should compensate.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


Man has created death. And everything else that's circumstantial in life, for that matter.


It rained. I tried writing about the whole experience of feeling it on my body and from my soul. Words fail me. So I just enjoy the rains and freeze it for eternity.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Biz talk

Business channels generally get their maximum viewership between 9am and 5pm on weekdays. So that's what the who's who of business do the whole day when they're actually supposed to be contributing to the topline or bottomline of the company, huh?
Now, why didn't I think of that? Duh!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Little wonder

Just discovered on opening my bag: a chunk of G's colourful lego blocks.

This kid sure knows ways of getting my attention.

Miss her, immensely.

Tube Watch

It was World Media Day yesterday. How many of you bullshitters in the media knew that? And those of you who did, what was your contribution to it?

Did you send that babe you've been hitting on withered flowers? OR leave a cryptic Da Vinci Code-esque message at her workstation?

Did you bullshit your way into getting an exclusive interview with the who's-who of the F**k-All world?

Did you feed the world enough crap so they'd die puking or of indigestion?

Did you snoop around for a better paying job?

Did you bitch about that babe who pipped you to the post of blah-blah-blah coz she slept with the boss while you were sleeping with the enemy?

Did you go lick your Editor's arse so you could get the next bump up soon?

What the F**K did you do then?

After ages, I surfed the telly last night.

There was an information overkill on the ‘cataclysmic loss’ of Pramod Mahajan, who was showered all the accolades except the Bharat Ratna. (NDTV's Srinivasan Jain, actually didn't know whether to smile or not when posted outside the Hinduja for a "comprehensive coverage" of the deceased!) R-I-P.

Abheek Barman fumbled and mumbled and went around in circles trying to explain the impact of a fuel price hike. All this, never without that cherubic smile.

And, I learnt that 76% of the Indian population “believes” the media … from who else, but TimesNOW. Speaks volumes about the TOI-literate Indian population??

MTV was playing some nice hindi popular songs. Tooombaa enjoyed maatde;)