Monday, May 31, 2004
The following piece is a compilation of some very candid confessions - secrets darker than what Gestapo has ever collected - of four of my closest friends. Most of it came verbatim from the proverbial horse's mouth (asides included). Acknowledgements to the
girlfriends-turned-spouses of two of my pals for their inputs too. Sorry guys, but I had to use this old piece since I ran out of stuff to write on my blog today - u know just like Uppma served at hotels :-)
12 new reasons to stay single unless you fancy...
Its early days:
* Going down on your knees persuading a common friend (to you and your gal) to get you a favorable intro and her phone number.
* Bribing this "obnoxious saheli" (yeah, by now she's not needed - more so since she wants to know everything thats happening ) to keep you posted on the other men in your gal's life.
* Getting turned down thrice (that’s the average..of course, law of averages don’t always work) and putting up with your gal's "play-hard-to-get" nakras for a normal Rs. 30 Capuccino date @ Barista. (Cheapskate I always was)
* Lying through your teeth that you spent hours in selecting the mushiest card at Archies for her Birthday. (Hey, they just hiked prices too :-()
The middle of the marathon:
* Sleeping through a movie of Brad Pitt / Ben Affleck or for that matter any handsome dude dimly aware that she's gushing on and on about the creep. (Thank God she atleast likes Rajini)
* Listening to her detailed arguments on how Butter popcorn has lesser calories than Caramel popcorn.(need to check on the veracity of her claims though)
* Replying to her mails of "Kya chal raha hai" once every 10 minutes, then professing your undying love once every hour and religiously forwarding every forward you get so that she does not miss a thing in your life. (I actually used to do that last part -
* Spending half an hour everyday on the phone discussing what the lunch menu at her office was and how she resisted eating all of the above since she was dieting. (Thankfully our future roti bill should balance our kapda bill)
* Walking in and out of a million clothes shops, asking your opinion on the colors / texture/looks / what-not for hours only to see her finally pick up the first tops she saw
at the first store.
The last mile:
* Nodding in agreement to her plans for a "simple wedding" which include an invitee list of only 1400 people, chef duties by Arusuvai Natarajan, reception concert by Mandolin Srinivas (she actually thinks he's cho chweet - Marriage counsellor, here we come!) and a honeymoon at Bali (Damn Hrithik and his KNPH)
* Getting into a discussion on the finest detail of everything from the size of the wash basin in "our" dream house to the color of the walls of the kennel of her favorite Lab, Roger - you haven't heard it all - all this hours before your engagement ceremony.
* Sacrificing your quality time in front of the TV watching "dumb", "manly" sports like Basketball and Formula One in favor of more refined choices like soaps on Sony and Zee.
Enough is enough :-)
I think, therefore I am... single. (Due apologies to Rene Descartes) But i do realise that your perspective could be different - Mind letting me know :-)
Sunday, May 30, 2004
am told he is actually my second) that I mentioned in passing in one of my previous posts - it was today - and boy, what an event it was..
First things first, I think I am getting old. Would you believe if I told you that I had mistaken the function for yesterday and had landed up at their home with a BIG bouquet? I must have sensed something was amiss when I did not see even a shamiana put up besides the lack of a crowd..But then I guess I was too caught up in my own world. Of course, I have always been smart (pat on my own back) and I managed to save the situation by cooking up some wonderfully believable (or so I think) stories about how I might be busy the next day and so had to drop in and wish him on the momentous occasion. Save this small gaffe, Saturday went off well.
I have never really relished these social gatherings and the prospects of being the only representative for my family at the function only added to my apprehensions. The muhurth was between 10:30 and 12 noon and with an idea of skipping early, I reached
their house sharply at 10 am. To my horror, I realized that everyone had turned up an hour before me. And before I could say Bingo, I was accosted by all and sundry and asked to explain my mother's absence. Mumbling ridiculous excuses, I vaguely scanned the
crowd in search of a known face when I finally saw my savior in the form of my Chinna Thatha (Grandpa's bro) Now, I have to say a few words about this man..
C.S.Ramachandran: A 75 year young gentleman - he's one of the smartest people I have ever seen - a man capable of matching wits with ten of my generation and still coming out trumps. A well read man with a penchant for unnerving young kids in the family with difficult puzzles and quizzes, Mani pa (as we call him fondly) is simply put, delightful company.
Settling down into a seat besides him, we started our sparring session. It had been a few years since we had met and he was actually amazed that today I was giving as much as I was getting. Clearly pleased at the progress I had made, he started firing Qs on the
current political scenario, the latest book I had read and how I was doing my Hindu crossword and whether I was taking my Table Tennis seriously. Without claiming to be modest, I must admit that I was in "full form" and literally charmed him with my replies.
This was then followed by the expected tortures - I was introduced to all the obese maamis, the old gossipping pattis, my beautiful cousins (;-) and anyone and everyone I "HAD" to know. And once the engagement ceremony was over (Sridhar n Priya looked really nice together - mebbe marriages are made in heaven), the women folk got down to their favorite pastime...Making plans for the next bakra..A few of my aunts gathered around Jayanthi's payyan (that's me - as u can see I had no identity of my own) and asked him "When are you getting married?" Usually I get flustered by this rubbish and lose my cool. But today I was in full form and I ended up saying "Maami, if only you were 25 years younger, I would have had no hesitation marrying you - Lucky uncle :-)" And this I saw, made them really happy and they bugged me no more.
Watching me handle all this with aplomb, my Chinna Thatha crowned me "The most intelligent person in my generation" and this for me was the "piece d'resistance". On second thoughts, this might be a crown of thorns considering I will now have to live up to his gargantuan expectations but then.. I shall enjoy this till it lasts.. which could be the next engagament or wedding in our family :-)
Friday, May 28, 2004
Location: A tiny peninsula in Southern Europe
Population: around 60 million
Famous for: Handsome men, Renaissance art, crime and mafia gangs, soccer
My first love affair with Italy started in Std 6 - I still remember vividly how my class teacher who had visited Venice once used to spin stories about how beautiful the country was - She would rattle on and on about the famous gondolas rides and how she was "this" close to the Pope at the Vatican. Impressionable age that it was, I decided that one of my first holiday destinations when I became rich and famous would be Italy. Needless to say, the last time i saw Italy was when my 8 year old nephew opened the atlas last week.
It was during one of my first quizzes in school that I also heard of that great all rounder of the 16th century (am I right?) Leonardo Da Vinci. Artist, inventor, architect, mathematician - a genius if ever there was one. Did you know that he used corpses stolen from the gallows to perform his medical experiments - of course u did - but did u also know that he wrote in his own style of "mirror writing" - starting at the right side of the page and moving to the left. It was only when he was writing something intended for other people that he wrote in the normal direction. Comprendre?
Then came movies and Marlon Brando as Don Corleone changed everything I had imagined about this wonderful land. However since I had grown up by then, blood and gore and power and politics also appealed tremendously. I wanted to be "mafioso" - I dreamt of honor and pride and imagined myself to be of pure Sicilian blood. I saw all gangster movies and basically went mad.
The last few years (and I use "few" very loosely) my only Italian connection has been with footer. Every Amar, Akbar and Anthony knows that I am a big fan of the Azzuri and it infuriates me whenever these self proclaimed pundits rubbish the Italian style of playing as "boring". Hey, do I need to remind that defending is as much an art as scoring goals ? Besides the sublime Gianfranco Zola and that towering giant Christian Vieri, aren’t we forgetting that awesome footballer Francesco Totti for providing us moments of sheer bliss with his wonderful ....foot-in-the mouth quotes :-) Love live the Azzuri !
As I keep saying, there's something about this nation that will always fascinate me.
Thursday, May 27, 2004
Originally uploaded by Jupieee.
You could love her, you could hate her (not so sure abt this though) but you could never ignore her. You could be forgiven for having first impressions of her as hot headed and impetuous - but I, for one, knew her much better than that. She was honest and loyal - always spoke her mind - enthusiastic and committed in everything she undertook.
When I look back today - those detailed mails about ur temple tours before u reached SP, those long walks in Juhu beach singing old Ilayaraja classics, that heart-to-heart talk we had while waiting for our Rural Marketing Prof to land at Mumbai airport, our last fun trip to Madh Island .. These are memories that I shall treasure forever.
"U r a wonderful pal - simply one of a kind"
Happy Birthday Amma!
ps: Keep smiling as you r in this snap.
Wednesday, May 26, 2004
Venue: Yet another pub in Bangalore
Time: Sometime in Feb 2004
Principal players: Four long lost bosom buddies - lets call them Alpha, Beti (she was the lone female), Gama and Jupieee
The occasion: Reunion - a year after/(post) graduation
Beti: How is work yaar?
Alpha: *%^&*( , lets not talk about it (gushes down a mug full of beer in one shot)
Gama: My designation says i am a consultant - i have to handle 20 critical requests over email every day, slog 50 hrs a week and i get paid a measly 8 lpa. Why doesnt anyone realise the value of us MBAs ?
Alpha: Oh, u've shifted from Infy to Accenture huh??
Beti: I have a great team, my boss is chilled out, the timings are flexible but i still have to travel far, yaar..Gama, isnt Accenture on Cunningham road.. Any openings?
Gama: Yeah, but your profile wont fit (sneers)
Alpha: Jupieee, u *(&^%, hows u doin' ?
Jupieee: So-So (grunts)
(Jupieee is a man of few words)
Gama: So when are YOU guys shifting jobs? (in a tone that suggests that neone who hasnt shifted by now is a dunce)
Beti: Netime newhere as long as i get a 40% hike. Cmon dude, the market is booming. Neone has a list of headhunters?
Alpha: @*&^%$...These morons have promised me an on-site opportunity in Germany next month - praying that it materialises.
Gama: I assume they are flying you by Lufthansa and not some cheap airline. And u Jupieee?
Jupieee (mutters): Am undecided. Lets see!
(Jupieee looks a worried man)
Beti: So any marriage on the cards? Cmon guys, spill the beans!
Alpha: Women..They are so much like domain names: the best ones are already taken..Life is so friggin' unfair man.
Gama: I dont have the time to look out yaar - new job, more pressure - However i have told my folks to look out for a well educated gal preferably from the IIMs - She should be from a respectable family and should be working, preferably in a software firm - so that she can relocate with me, u see. Of course since i am tall, ideally she should be atleast 5'8"
Beti: Whoa !! Thats gonna be tuff !!
Alpha: yaya..What about you Beti ?
Beti: Me, there is a Mr X in my office - he's a CA rank holder - tall, dashing and his father is a steel magnate - he has asked me to marry him twice but i am confused. He's not very funny and gets serious too easily.
Gama: Jupieee, u still going around with that Plane Jane or are you on another of your endless searches for Ms Perfect?
Jupieee: Who - what ? No mate, i am off women !
...n that precisely was when all talk ceased and people got down to the more serious business of eating and drinking.
Ladies and Gentlemen, presenting to you the four typical products of B school - the cynics(Alphas), the mercenaries(Betis), the snobs(Gamas) and the confused ones(Jupieees).
Tuesday, May 25, 2004
Dancing in electric trains and driving bike triples
Sketching on borrowed books and playing drums on vessels
These are a few of my favourite quirks
Trin trin trin trin trin trin trin trin
Sleep-acting in training and karaoke when shaving
Sending blank SMSs and buzzing in messenger fights
Playing soccer in the slush and watching movies full of mush
These are a few of my favourite quirks
When the power supply fails
When the mail server conks
When i feel bored
I simply indulge in my favorite quirks
And then i dont feel so ... bored.
(Repeat all verses)
I take a bow
ps: Anyone needs a songwriter pronto jes contact me - i have more of these "free verses"
pps: Beware - plagiarised versions are also available
Monday, May 24, 2004
Its been a good four years since I quit my first company but I still have fond remembrances of Pune. Last Friday evening I was stuck in one of these nostalgic moods thanks to a phone call from an old colleague of mine. I was due to go for a movie later that night but somehow just didn’t feel like it. Since it was supposed to be a family outing, I could not ditch 'em.. Surprise of all surprises, who would you think was sitting in the row ahead of me at the hall? My best friend from those days :-) Oh boy, was I thrilled !! We ended up gossiping for an hour - catching up on our lives - The poor guy has lost it all - He's married :-)
Cut to March 2001 and I think there was this Lawrence and Mayo free eye camp at my workplace in Chennai..Never one to be even remotely interested in such sessions, I remember being literally dragged down to the basement and forcefully subjected to a test by a pesky colleague of mine...He kept telling me that for all that I knew I might fall for the cute optometrist :-) Que sera sera...It was there, that day, that I met my first serious crush (pardon the oxymoron) and would you believe it if I said that it was the optometrist's assistant :-)
Cut to the present: If there is any complaint that I have about Bangalore then it has to be that I have lots of "distant" relatives who live here. It becomes a real pain considering each and everyone of them want you to drop in at their place once in while (without even the promise of a dinner or a lunch invite) I have been having this eerie feeling for the last two days that something big n bad was gonna happen.. And lo, it happened today morning. My mom informed me that there was this third cousin of mine, Sridhar, who was getting engaged this Saturday and that I was supposed to represent the family. N to think I had grand plans for myself in Chennai :-(
Have you ever felt cornered by fate? Do lemme know - would be a real comfort to know that I aint the only person suffering!
Friday, May 21, 2004
Just as Wendy is getting cosy with Chandler on my favorite sitcom Friends, suddenly i find myself staring at a blank screen..Unable to understand whats happening i fiddle around hopelessly with the remote - without any success - i peep outta my window to check if alls fine with my neighbour's television - it is - she's as usual watching some soap on Sony. Unable to take it nemore, i holler to The Good Lord up above "It just aint fair - why me? Why me?"
Flash!! A brilliant streak of lightning!!
A booming voice thunders "Kya hua? Why the heck are you cribbing, you nasty earthling? Its a tough job i got here and once in a while i do screw up - cant you just ignore it as an aberration?"
I retort "Not this time - i've had too much for this week"
The Voice is annoyed and threatens "I dont get it - u better explain or else..."
Not to be cowed down i sneer "After enduring days of shameless drama i discover that my country has a reluctant and almost reclusive Prime Minister - I realise that my bosses earn "obscene pots of gold" while i am expected to slave on for "pride" - and to add insult to serious injury, you screw up all my weekend plans with a silly wedding (assuming marriages are still made in heaven) - If this isnt reason enough to crib, what is ?"
The Voice ponders "I guess you have a point - how can i compensate ? I grant you three wishes - Name them fast.. Your time starts now..10..9...8.."
"Hold on Hold on - Not so fast - Can i phone a friend?"
"You *@&^%$, ok, here i go...First of all, i want.."
"Sorry, your time's up but since you started your first wish i will let that count - Finish it"
"Want to.. want to.. see Aayitha Ezhuthu (Yuva in Hindi)tomorrow night - can you arrange for 2 tickets please"
"Thathasthu" is the last i hear and lo, i find myself with two passes to Nataraj.
08:07 am 21/5/2004
My friend screams "You crazy git - Havent u seen BRUCE ALMIGHTY? Couldnt you have asked for something bigger?"
(Hanging my head in shame) "Like what?"
"Dunno... but atleast balcony tickets yaar not stall"
Thursday, May 20, 2004
Me: Dinesh, if Maino comes to power i gotta leave the country mate. U know anyone abroad who can get me a job?
Dinesh: My ungle ees in the Gelff - zimbly eemeil heem n esk no
Me: Boss, i have no clue whos got the doc
Boss: Penguj dold me he hed it..jeg vith heem..
Me: Hey macha, lets go for this Roger Waters thingy man
Arun: Remgi, I like wonly pope muzik..No da..No da..please da..
If my pal whos jes back from Kolkatta is to be belived, then things are even funnier there.. Guess v shud all kombile a list of the Inglish we hear.. Would you like to contribute ?
Been thinking of penning my own blog for long but never got down to actually doing it.. Many a slip between the cup and lip.. But to be perfectly honest, i kinda suspected it would become compulsive and eat up too much of my time - considering i got better things to do like..hmmm...doing nothin' :-) But then u never know till u try..
Its a new day.. Its a new plan.....So here i am..