Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Say, what! But.... obviously?

There are questions that people sometimes ask, the answers to which should be obvious (duh..uh!). But, for some unfathomable reason, aren't to those who so infuriatingly continue to ask 'em. Sample some of these, as also the real answers they deserve, instead of the usually baffled and slow "ye...aaah":

In a movie theatre:
Q: Heyyyy, are you also watching the movie?
A: You think? Actually I've just followed you here so I can stick my much-chewed bubble gum in your over-sprayed hair. And I hear the popcorn's low fat. Gonna carry that back to watch Seinfeld re-runs at home, right after I stick your head onto the bucket seat.

In a shopping mall:
Q:Oh, hi what are you doing here?
A: Hmmm... Nothing much. Just here to push some kids down escalators, right before I wire the underground lot to explode once I exit. And I hear Balaji's holding auditions for their next Baa the Agelss at the ground level. My gawd, have you registered yet?

On a flight to Goa:
Q: Hi, Where are you guys off to?
A: Dunno about you, but this plane's going to Waziristan. (Oops have I said too much??) Ummm... err... excuse me.... oh blast it all.... where the hell is that plastic fork I lifted from the salad bar?!!

At a wedding:
Q: My God, do you also know these guys?
A: Not really, just that the groom and I sort of go back a long way... We were, like, co-kidnapees a while ago, and we both suffered from the Stockholm syndrome, you know, fell in love with our kidnapper and had a kinda' threesome and all that. Oh, but that was a while ago and as you can see we've all moved on... BTW, he's at Guantanamo now.

In the maternity ward:
Q: Omigosh, you're having a baby?
A: Not really, I was abducted by aliens and held captive by mutant lizards. They visit me sometimes and only go away if I steal a new-born baby for them every once in a while. And the tummy? There was this strange thing they fed me on Mars....

At a high-priced sold-out cricket match:
Q: Oh God, do you like cricket too?
A: No, No. I'm actually working for PETA these days and am monitoring Harbhajan Singh. Just here to watch out for any verbal abuse involving Symonds... oooops! simians, I mean. Ah, miss those good old days when people would just stick to calling fat Pak captains a starchy veggie... These animals, I tell ya'!

And finally, what is it with people who respond to a humbly offered "I'm sorry" with an arrogant "You ought to be!" But I just said I am... Oh, bollocks to it all!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Grouchy and hungover

Since I slept only after six in the morning and was at work, bleary-eyed and beery-fied, by 11:30, I suppose I could very well have left it at that, but then there's more where that came from. So, here goes my Gripe of the Day:

The very same evening that you decide to snip off your talons, AND drink a gallon of beer at a pre-wedding party, why is it that the naara (cord holdin' it all together!) of your salwaar will always-always somehow manage to tie you hopelessly up in knots at the exact same (inopportune) time that you have finally found a moment to unshackle yourself from the mind-numbing, yawn-inducing stories of leech-type relatives/acquaintances and hit the loo? Why, pray? Why?

Head-on collision with one embarrasingly damp salwaar avoided successfully, and that too just in the nick o' time, you will hear a sonorous "Ah, there you are!" just as you make a beeline for the safe confines of that dark li'l corner where similarly beseiged co-sufferers have taken refuge and are discreetly waving at you to make a dash for cover. Alas! The three-inch heels have ensured you are a head taller than even most of the men in the room, AND you gave up hunching along with your braces in the 9th grade. Would I coulda done the same with civility....

So while I'm having a whale of a time (sans replenished beer mug in hand), listening to yet another story about how Master bada shetaan hai! Bunty is such a wholesome, delightful little moppet, since he can dance to "Haai Pappi", chant the Gayatri Mantra and look up women's skirts with quite the same aplomb, I've reconciled myself to my fate and am now thinking this:

Why doesn't India have anyone in the government who even remotely looks like David Miliband?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Little solace and a quantum of disappointment

So, as you can sort of guess, I have crossed over, from the bleak ranks of the unfortunate few who have still not seen the new Bond flick, on to the other, not-so-happy side. Bond or bust? That was the hottest topics of debate in our daily meetings this past week.

Now i must say that I'd like to take a Buddhist stand on it: that of the middle path fame. Neither loved it nor hated it, drooled as usual over craggy Craig, wished I was born in the Ukraine to a Mr and Mrs Kurylenko and like any hot-blooded Bond buff, was mighty upset about the absence of all those flashy gadgets from the latest edition.

C'mon all you Broccolis or whoever at Eon!! Who wants vegetarian sophistication (an eco-terrorist?? Oh, puhleeeeze!), when we can have all-you-can-endure red-meaty kitsch?? You can get a measure of my frustration that when Mr. Bond handed out his visiting card to this guy in one scene, I fully expected it to blow up in the dude's face, even though I knew this was a much-used old trick from the annals of spying :)

Also, James has somehow transformed into Jason. Of the Bourne fame, and while you can assess the quantum of my longing for another Bourne show here, I can't make-do with an altered version of my favourite spy to scratch that itch! You see, it's to do with all that visceral hand-to-hand combat stuff, where our James is busy killing with more than just his roguish charm, which he seems to have dropped along the way, together with his penchant for shaken martinis. And Danny Boy's surely earned my name for him: Bond. Thames Bond. Ooooh, icy.

Still, I like my Jameses different from my Jasons. So in the next one, let's see some more of your tools, boy! ;)

Friday, November 14, 2008

God, an Old Lady, and the Word

I did the unthinkable last evening. I swore in a house of worship. That too on the biggest b'day bash of the year at the said house. Sort of, ummm.... because I was, partially, pissed off by a Rep of the Order. I had reason but perhaps no justification. Yes the two are different.

There is this (hopefully not too blasphemous, and certainly NOT made up by me) joke about Lord Hanuman, in which a Surdy claims that the monkey god was one of his kin, making the rather irrefutable argument that no one else would have been that eager to set his tail on fire in another man's battle against the man who kidnapped his wife. In other words, you neither get the babe nor the glory. And THAT my friends is what happened to another Surdy.

So, a security guard wouldn't let this old lady's car up the ramp. Apparently because such guards are always under orders from the powers that be to brook no resistance whatsoever from those who aren't happy with the basement parking lot, and here no distinction is to be made between kids on roller blades and tottering old aunties.

Unfortunately for the guard, while I was dutifully parking my car in the dungeon, I saw a couple of cars go up the ramp, with no distinguishing features whatsoever that indicated the reasons for this horrid man's preferential treatment, and was instantly enraged about the plight of the old old Auntyji. So even as the nasty man in ill-fitting uniform brushed aside the weak protests of the faithful old pilgrim's kin, I took it upon myself to argue her case.

Very politely. But then it got ugly. Rapidly. He shouted. I lost it. And so I turned to another man in holier uniform. Only to get an unholier shock when he told me to stop lying in a place of worship, saying that no cars had gone up the ramp (i could see them even as he spoke). Then he made matters worse by informing me that his conclusion was the only correct one and that its authenticity was based solely and surely on the fact that he was drinking a glass of "holy" milk, on which he kept his hand and swore. Yes he did. To imply that only the truly depraved would doubt such an oath, which should be treated as being purer than the cream in his rapidly cooling cup, and more unquestionable than the integrity of our politicians.

And that's when I used the 87+13-96 letter word. In my defense, it was mumbled so far under my breath that i could hear my one ear saying to the other "Eh, did you 'ear that??". (Sorry, terrible one.) But HE knows I said it. And it was HIS birthday.

I'm sorry I spoilt your party with my momentary lapse in judgement. Just don't hold it against me. I promise never to help any old, defenseless ladies ever again. Unless asked by them specifically, on a sworn affidavit signed by the Pope. I swear. Shit. Cancel that one too, please. Thanks, I do love you. And I know my way of doing that is not in any manual, but then that's why you created only one of me.

Phew! Thank heavens for that, eh? :)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Some kinda blue

I looked outside my window this morning only to see that the smog's come early to Delhi this time, becoming thicker as the day wears on, and choking the pale sunlight, till nothing remains but the dusty olive outlines of past-monsoon trees. The world looks like a laminated photograph, made timelessly grainy by its faithfulness to the forgotten wall to which it clings.

Driving to and from work on such a smoggy day, I feel much like an impatient puppy trying to get out of a grey sheet thrown on it by a bunch of frisky kids, one who's heart is just not in the game, and who emerges from its unwelcome, raspy cocoon only to listlessly whimper back inside and snooze after discovering that its tormentors have forgotten all about it anyway and moved on to play "ice-pice"at the neighbour's. Yeah that's what all us kids called it way back then (and probably do) and yes, that's exactly what a smog filled day in Delhi feels like when you're just ever so slightly sad, and can't pinpoint the exact time of, or reason for, being hit by the weepy wave.

I feel treacle-tired, like you would get if you were to wade through a stream of treacle... your limbs feel syrupy and all you want to do is either let the sweetness lull you under or over to the other side: the one that's waiting for your warmth starved soul like a hot shower and a plate of eggs, sunny side-up.

I do believe the sun's on the other side of this moony Monday and till it's back peeping through my window again, I guess I'll just have to rustle up a reverie to cheer myself up and out of my melancholic meanderings. Hmmmm..... Bahama-mamas on the beach anyone?

Friday, November 7, 2008

The wrong end

Unlike Terminator (who is robotically programmed to warn of his return), but very much like Delhi's dengue (with its element of "surprise", year after bloodsucking year, season after unprepared season), I'm back.

Tough luck for those of you who thought the squeak had been silenced for good. C'mon, don't be greedy. You only get to say goodbye to one freak this week, and George W. Bush has a head start on the packing. So, as a welcome present to myself, I present to you......

The Ridiculousest Quote of the Day.

(Note: There always are more than one here, in our great nation, on any given day. Yes, we are blessed by the Gods of the Gab). Here goes.

"Each part of the body has a certain use and if it is put to some other use serious injury is certain and this is happening. If an act is unlawful it cannot be rendered legitimate because the person to whose detriment he acts cannot consent to it. No person can license another to commit a crime".

This was the ingenious argument advanced by Mr. B.P. Singhal, a former Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP and Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader, while arguing that homosexuality.... brace yourselves................ can result in grievous injuries. As if the Indian law is not bizarre enough, we have seen a profusion of beyond-belief arguments to preserve its sanctity.

And what exactly was that again? Let's see:

"Each part of the body has a certain use..." : I guess he's hinting at Himesh Reshammiya. Right notes (hmmmm), wrong orifice. But perhaps someone should also tell Mr. Singhal to keep his money far far away from where his mouth is, and put the latter to ... umm... er... better use.

".... and if it is put to some other use serious injury is certain...." : I don't think any "grievous injuries" have been reported from the hallowed corridors of powers, where many of Mr. Singhal's ilk walk around freely spewing smoke from their rotund rears.

".....and this is happening."
: Ever heard of a Ms. Lorena Bobbit? She found out her husband was putting a key body part to "some other's use" and inflicted some "serious injury" with a kitchen knife. Ouch!

"If an act is unlawful it cannot be rendered legitimate.... " : Bushisms, anyone?

".....because the person to whose detriment he acts cannot consent to it." : Really? We have been consenting to politicians like these to what should very much be our collective detriment for years now, but look at us. Even the yummy Daniel Craig has said that he wanted the Indians to see his new movie before the Americans do. Imagine that.

"No person can license another to commit a crime" : Early release or not, has the man never heard of James Bond or his MI6 approved high level clearance license to kill?

As for me, I sure have, so I'm off to oblige Bond. Icy Thames Bond.