Month: March 2009

Night Sights

It has been 26 days since my study holidays have commenced and I am most happy to announce that I have made exactly 0% progress with my studying. It is most difficult, and I have reason to believe that my books have been spooked with a spell of some sort because everytime I open my books, I have this incredible urge to fall asleep, which I do, invariably, hence the progress. Or the lack of it.
I don’t believe its my fault. Its just that there are so many distractions. Take for instance, yesterday night. My mother had caught me sleeping on my desk that very evening. She suggested that instead of studying in my room, I could study in the balcony, where I’d get some fresh air as well.
Clearly, this was one of my mother’s very intelligent plans. The balcony would be airy no doubt, but it would also be home to mutant mosquitoes.
[weird trivia alert] I say mutant because they are much like the locusts who had mutated in order to accomodate DDT in their DNA, hence making them immune to it, these mutant mosquitoes have mosquito spray/repellant accomodated in their DNA. [/weird trivia alert]
This meant that spraying HIT (now kills cockraches!) would pretty much be in vain, and I had to be extra alert in order to ward them off and thus the chances of me sleeping on my Audit & Assurance textbook would be pretty neglible.

So I went.

The balcony gives a straight view of the road, which meant I could people watch while I swatted mosquitoes. Right across my house, there is Krishna’s Iron Vandi [cart], painted in a royal shade of blue. Krishna usually leaves at around 7.30 in the evening, so I didn’t expect any kind of movement there at 8.30, which was the time I went to squat, I mean study there.

But I was wrong.

While I was flipping the pages, trying to figure out the responsibility of auditors, I saw a leg, right outside the little iron van. I cocked my head a bit and my instincts were right. There was a body attached the leg. I got up in the pretext of reading my textbook and then casually glanced that way again. Male, 20ish. He had one hand to his cheek and a rather wide grin on his face. Probably on a call with his girlfriend, I thought. But what I didn’t understand was why he kept moving behind the van and coming out. I moved to the corner for a closer look and behold, hidden behind the van was a girl. A girl, with a grin on her face. And half her saree missing.
They were, as the immortal Bappi-da put it, louwers. Night Louwers.

Clearly, the spot behind the van was most convenient for their louwings. It was at a good distance from the streetlight and not easily notice-able unless ofcourse you were blessed with my observation skills.

“AMMA!”

The effect was almost immediate. The guy almost jumped away and the girl was trying to adjust her clothes and jump out at the same time. Then they looked around in a most amusingly frantic manner before walking (almost running) away from the iron vandi.
My mother came in to the balcony.
Enna aachu?” [What happened?]
“Nothing ma. Ennakku coffee venum” [Nothing ma. I want a coffee]

Ah, the simple joys in life.

Cliqued

Surely you’ve been tagged in one of those group pictures on facebook now? You know that picture, the one with a bunch of cartoon faces with titles like “little miss psycho” and the lot. Well, not little miss psycho maybe, but you get my drift.

Its actually pretty interesting, the tagging. But somehow, it doesn’t represent the clique/stereotype sets from where I come from.I never went to school with gangstas, pimps and ladies men.

I went to school, with these guys.

Bet you did, too.

Soap Opera

My father is one man who has made plenty of sacrifices. Forced to, rather. In a household of 5 (grandma included), he is the only man, and thus, has no choice. 
Everyday he is subject to intense discussions on clothes, pink, accessories, clothes, shoes, curtains, clothes, the neighbours, clothes, the neighbour’s clothes and ofcourse, graphic descriptions of our cycles – the ones without the wheels.

But he just nods along and pretends to understand what we say, because apparently, thats what men do. 

He doesn’t care much for the household, the only thing he actually cares about is whether or not the flush is working in the bathroom.
The bathroom, is my father’s sanctuary. I think he’s spent more time inside the loo reading The Economic Times than sitting with us in the living room. Probably cause its the only place in the house which is remotely male. 
But its maleness has deteriorated over the years, especially ever since I turned 17. Enter the UFOs (Unidentified Frothing Objects) – for the past 3 years, there has been a steady stream of a variety of fruity smelling soap and shampoo in our bathroom, courtesy me. The result of which, every time my father steps out of the bathroom after his shower, he has no choice but to smell either of strawberries or oranges. He’d grimace ofcourse, but we were pretty convinced that he secretly preferred strawberries to boring old Cinthol.

A couple of weeks back however, things changed.

When my dad came back from yet another one of his trips to Bangkok, he brought back a couple of bottles of liquid soap, just like we had asked him. However, it wasn’t the usual strawberry/citrus soap that we asked him, he had brought back Palmolive (For Men!)
“Appaaaaa…”
“What? We always have only that fruit soap in the bathroom. I thought it’d be a change”
“But this? Palmolive for men? Its a guy soap!”
“So? Don’t I use your strawberry soap?”
“But this is boy soap!”
“Ok, don’t use it. But I’ll use only this from now on. I’ve had enough of strawberries. Daily I go to office smelling like fruit salad.”

And so the Aambla (male) soap took over the bathroom. After initial reluctance, my mom was the first to use it and confirmed its menthol-y goodness. Much to my fathers amusement, I followed suit. And so did my sister.
Today, all of us smell of Palmolive (for men!), but still subject my father to intense discussions on clothes, pink, accessories, clothes, shoes, curtains, clothes, the neighbours, clothes, the neighbour’s clothes and ofcourse, graphic descriptions of our cycles – the ones without the wheels.
Because that’s what women do.

Happy women’s day. 

[March 8th is not only Women’s Day, but also the birthday of the author of this blog. Please to wish the brilliant little blogger on her 20th birthday who continues to remain brilliant and little even after 20 years] 

Filter Copy

They say imitation is flattery. Its flattering no doubt, when you get to know that there are people who feel that the crap you write is worth the process of right click->copy->paste->send to all.
At the start of it all, I was amused when I got an email from Ram saying “You’re famous”. It was my very own blog post (Deviance Nov 2008) being recycled as an email forward. I scrolled down to check if there was a link or an attribution.
There wasn’t any. But whatever, I thought. As long as they thought it was funny, I was ok. What made me happier was that it was now concrete proof that I was kinda famous. Online, atleast.

When the second and the third emails started arriving, I was basking in my own smugness no doubt, but there was a twinge of disappointment. None of them had an attribute. My post continues to be recycled in cyberspace, and its even found a place in shady desi forums (where you can’t leave a comment without having images of female genitalia being thrust at you). No attributes, again.
Yesterday, I got a call from a cousin saying I was featured in a magazine. I was naturally surprised, because Vogue/India Today/Seventeen/Outlook hadn’t called me for their exclusive interviews…yet. Turned out it was some obscure Tamil magazine published by (catch your breath) The Tamil Brahmin Assosciation.
The alledged picture of mine which had been featured had clearly, clearly been ripped off my flickr photostream!
And surprise surprise, no attribution again. (I could sue those guys, considering all my pictures on flickr are copyrighted as all rights reserved.)

—->Now where have I seen this picture before….

This has made me lose all my belief in online publishing. Takes me back to the days in 2nd standard where I used to come to school with pretty pink pencils only to get them stolen by fellow classmates. My mom stopped buying me those pencils and instead sent me to school with the boring red-black Natraj ones instead. They got stolen even then, but atleast the number of incidents dropped.
I have half a mind to stop publishing on line. I’ll tell you why – its not everyday that I come up with ideas like that, and I had intended to get that bit of fiction published. But now, there doesn’t seem to be a point, what when half the world had it delivered in their inbox.

Is there any kind of solution to this? I mean, if someone like me is having plaigarism issues, I’m pretty sure the country is going through an originality crisis, plus there are people better than me who are probably having their stuff ripped too.

Help.

PS: In case you got my post as a forward too, and if you want to forward it, go ahead, but please link me back. Pretty please.