Friday, December 30, 2011

*Happy* New Year.

People of Chennai, there's news for you!

Good news: you get a hell of a long weekend for new year's!
Bad news: you see there's this *stormy* little thing called Thane...


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Humour & I...

...go back a long way. We are the long-lost siblings, separated at a Kumbh mela many years ago. That's why the first song that I am really proud of (meaning I don't wince when someone listens to it in my presence) is this:

This has nothing to do with the current state of my hair. I have had no problem in that department thanks to my parents' genes. The only care I take for my hair is letting them be, with just a trim here & there. They flourish best when no hair products are hoisted on to them.

But recently, this indifference was broken by a slyly crafted shampoo/conditioner ad (I don't know what it was), which convinced me that my hair wasn't "long, beautiful, shiny" enough, and the only way I could get the said attributes was by buying the product.

This song came to me while I was standing in the mall, staring at rows upon rows of "hair stuff", wondering what exactly I was doing there.

And I didn't buy anything.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Fuel-proof Senility

"..And let's look at the headlines this morning once again : the government has decided to raise the price of petrol by Rs.20 and that of.. "

Mr. Kantilal shut off the TV in disgust, wishing he could jump to his feet and stomp off on a protest on the street, as in the days of yore. Instead, he slowly stretched his feet, grabbed hold of his walking stick and crawled off the sofa.

“Where do they think the money is going to come from… do we all have trees shedding money in our backyards?.. when will they ever…”

Mrs. Kantilal tried to ignore the grumblings as long as she could. These days, there was no telling what could set him off.

“… hell with all the administration!... every time they find some or the other excuse to munch on my pension…”

Finally, when even the traffic on the road could not drown his voice, she came to the drawing room to find him shuffling up and down, muttering to himself (but loud enough to wake Moti downstairs, the poor animal.)

“What happened? Don’t get excited, you’ll only aggravate your knees.”

“How is one supposed to sit still? That’s what they want- that we sit in our chairs and quietly take whatever nonsense they dole out! But not me- I have to do something.. I will do something about it.. you just wait and see..”

He started limping towards their backyard, with the garage keys in his hand. Mrs. Kantilal was not worried- even if he started day-dreaming again, he could not open the big metal shutter. He would probably sit there till his temper cooled down.

“Madam, where do we keep our buckets?...”

Mrs. Kantilal sighed. Of course the painters had to come today, when the hubby was throwing a tantrum and she was the only one left to supervise.

“Yes.. you over there- don’t touch that corner until I tell… and these buckets need to be moved…”

The painters, like all thoroughly professional contractors, had a thousand requirements and a million questions. Mrs. Kantilal’s day was spent running around the house, attending to their queries about the colors and supervising their work. She hardly noticed the time till her daughter came home.

“Ma, I’m home!”

“Swati, don’t stand in the hall, go and change quickly… Mrs. Reddy brought some dhoklas today.. they are in the kitchen if you want, but I suggest you taste some before helping yourself..”

“Ma, where is dad? I don’t see him anywhere?..”

Mrs. Kantilal groaned. She had been blissfully ignorant for a few hours that there was a child in the house, who had again missed his 4.15 medicine dose.

“He’s there in the garage… must have fallen asleep… wait, let me come wake up the old man…”

As she was nearing the backyard door, she thought she heard someone neigh, like a horse. “Oh God! Has he started talking in his sleep again? I’ll have to ask Bhola to get some cotton wool for my ears…”

She opened the door and screamed. Swati came running, “What happened, ma? I thought I heard you- What’s this?!”

Mrs. Kantilal had not heard a horse neigh. It was a bleat. The bleating of two goats. Pristine white goats. Standing in their backyard, munching on the pride of her garden, the sweet peas.

“What in God’s name happened here? How did these two goats come into our house? Since when have you been sleeping? What’s with all this rope? And this… isn’t this Swati’s toy car? The one she rode when she was little? All these half-eaten carrots.. did the goats do this?? I wanted to make Gajar ka Halwa for Swati.. I told you your father is going senile… look at all this mess!”

Mr. Kantilal sat up blinking, looking thoroughly confused. He had been working on a prototype for a car that would not need any petrol… Yes, that was what he was doing… before he fell asleep… “Where’s the cart I had designed? And the automatically-driven engines? There were two of them, white in color… all they needed for fuel was carrots.. I don’t know where these goats came from!.. who took my engines?.. ”

I wrote this as an entry for the Fiat Indiblogger contest.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

ANOTHER bus ride

One would think govt buses are the most entertaining places in the world, considering that I am inspired to write another post about bus rides. Maybe it is the Mother Nature's way of propagating Her agenda to reduce pollution and get everyone to catch a bus... So here are a few more regulars I notice among my co-passengers, apart from my last post:

-   The avid music buff who HAS to display his impeccable taste by playing Reshammiya's latest hits on his      mobile phone armed with impossibly loud amplifiers

- The lady armed with what looks like two truckloads of vegetables. Any whisper of a sign from the conductor about paying extra for luggage will promptly be stopped in its tracks by a basilisk stare worthy of making Rajnikanth suffer from self-esteem issues

- The Spitter : Look left, look right, aim, shoot!

- Man Sitting Behind The Spitter : The expression he gives to The Spitter is worthy of putting him in serious contention for the Award for Best Villain (what else is the Filmfare award for "Best Actor in a Negative Role"?)

- The Marwadi businessman on phone, who happens to cause great chagrin to all owners of ears within an approximate 50-mile radius from him

The list could go on and on, but I need to record this incident that happened today for posterity purposes, lest it gets lost in the distant recesses (and nooks and crannies and lofts etc) of my mind. The bus I rode today happened to host an almost-pass-out-drunkard (this in the high and dry Gujarat), which, when brought to his notice, did not go down very well with the conductor, because as  he had accurately deduced, the man had spent his last paisa on liquor and was trying to ride for free. After telling the drunk man exactly what he thought of his entire khandaan, the conductor stopped the bus and started to kick him out. The drunkard probably realised he was too drunk to give a fitting reply, and instead nicked the conductor's ticket punching machine and ran off with him in hot pursuit. The conductor didn't take long to come back with his machine, which was probably as well, for people were starting to sprain their necks and fall off their seats in their attempt to follow the proceedings to the last gaali.

Duration : Approx. 8 minutes.
Entertainment value : About 1200% paisa vasool on the Rs.5 bus ticket.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Re-public Day

Today, while riding on the bus back home (in a state of deep shallow stupor) I suddenly remembered: Holy schmoly, it’s Republic Day tomorrow (yes, I think in terms of holy-schmoly too). Immensely satisfied with this piece of remembrance (not totally unaffected by the fact that it meant a holiday), my eyes, for some unfathomable reason, began a scrutiny of all my co-passengers.

-         The (probably) newlywed Marathi couple, with the man pointing out landmarks  from the bus window to his wife.
-         The 3 college girls sitting on a seat meant for two, chattering away to eternity,
-         The poor labourer-couple, for some reason swathed in clothes exceeding the demands of the climate, quiet throughout the journey
-         The conductor, seemingly suffering from a split personality disorder- he kept oscillating from a jovial “chalo tikkat - lal-peeli-khatti-meethi” (he equates the tickets with children’s candies) to an angry/aggressive “Agad khasso ne!” (Keep moving forward, people!)
-         The twin girls hanging on to their mom’s dupatta- the mom is super-vexed she can’t find a place to sit, while the twins are clearly enjoying dancing all over the place every time the bus stops or starts
-         No old people were standing today- had people been offering seats while I was- er- catching my forty winks? (I mean to imply nothing, but every time I’ve seen someone offering a seat to an elderly person, it has always been a girl, myself included)
-         The Gujarati mega-clan- some sitting and some standing- cracking jokes with each other and smiling at everyone in general
-         The gaggle of school kids, trying to confuse the conductor and trick him into taking less money from them.

Yes, I’d rather take a bus than hire a rick or *shudder* ride a vehicle any day. It saves the environment too.

Still can’t think how the above observations are related to Republic Day.

Happy Republic Day!