Monday, January 4, 2010

My New Year Resolutions

O ho ho!!! 2010 is here!! I’d like to wish my handful of readers a very Happy New Year 2010. Well, life fucked you in 2009 and life will continue to fuck you in 2010 – so in that sense the New Year will not be any different than the one which just sped by - but hey I hope and pray that life fucks you a little milder this year. Oh, please don’t take me seriously – I pray that the New Year showers on you roses and tulips, dollars and dinars, success and glory, love and peace, lots of smouldering beauties in 2-piece bathing suits (if you are a man), hunk after hunk resembling David Hasselhoff in his prime (if you are a woman), and Rohit Vermas and Bobby Darlings (if you are a eunuch). And I’ll be blogging lesser this year – so there you go, this New Year is guaranteed to be a happy one for you!

Cometh New Year and cometh resolution time. I’ve always been making New Year resolutions year after year like a compulsive habit. Until the last year, it used to be the same ol’ dope. I used to write down my resolutions on a piece of paper, beam with pride and religiously adhere to them for 24 hours. Then on the strike of the 25th hour, I used to tear out the piece of paper in frustration, crumple it into a ball and toss it on the floor for my cat to play football with. But this year, with my blog in place, I’ve decided to give my New Year resolutions a serious, longer run. What’s more, by sharing my resolutions with you, the World, I am hoping against hope that someone among you will be there by my side to remind me when I go astray.

So without anymore ado, here are my New Year Resolutions for 2010. Muwahahaha.... Hey no seriously, I have one hand over my heart and the other hand over my keyboard typing all this. Here goes:

1) I will not watch porn. That’s right, no more porn for me. I resolve to turn into a squeakily clean young man with moral values so rock solid that prospective mothers-in-law around the country will have catfights amongst themselves to bag me as their son-in-law. Yes, I am going to delete my terabytes of chee-chee stuff forever. Or wait, maybe not. Instead of deleting it, I will transfer all the files over to an external hard-drive, store the precious disk in a secure bank locker and instruct the bank to handover the locker keys to my future son on his 21st birthday. Yeah, that sounds right. I know I will make an ideal father. So my first New Year resolution ladies and gentlemen, no porn for me in 2010. No more kinky cheerleaders, no more kinky schoolteachers, no more kinky newsreaders, no more kinky mermaids, and no more of that kinky lady-whose-car-keeps-breaking-down-everytime-and-seeks-shelter-in-the-roadside-bungalow-with-an-attractive-landlord etc. etc. The only pictures of women I’ll be viewing on the Internet from now on are the ones which have them draped from head to toe in a nine-yard Kanjeevaram saree. The only ‘accessory’ I’d be expecting them to be adorned with will be pieces of traditional gold jewellery, bangles, toe-rings and copious amounts of sindhoor. The only ‘pose’ I’d expect them to strike would be a Namaste-pose. Oh no no no you bastards, by the saree I didn’t mean those barely-there, flimsily thin, transparent white ones waiting to be drenched with the first burst of cloud or second jug of water. Abey shoo go away you people and give me a chance to be a good boy, will ya?

2) As we are hovering on the topic, let me take the opportunity to make my second similar New Year resolution. I will not give any special tips or tricks to my teenaged or college-going male cousins this year. The special set of Parikshith anna’s tips/tricks/services which are so coveted by my younger male cousins are:

• Coming up with precise, innovative search keywords that would take them to some of the topmost Google-ranked porn sites.
• Sharing with them some of the absolute, rare gems from my collection mentioned in Resolution 1) above. Of course, this is proportional to their academic performance in school or college. The higher the percentage they achieve in their tests/exams, the more exotic will be the file they receive from their big brother. I am flattered when they tell me it is a tremendous motivation for them to do well in their studies.
• Getting me to write romantic notes or poetry for their crushes, which they pass off as their own, obviously. Getting me to counsel them about wooing their next new girlfriend for the week.
• Getting me to write witty stuff in the ‘fraandship’ requests that are sent to the babes in Orkut on their behalf. Sometimes the babes fall for it, but most of the times we end up with eggs on our faces.
• And then there are other common, trivial stuff like teaching the youngsters proper eve-teasing techniques, instructing them about the importance of saving for their illegal booze binges, teaching them the correct positions and angles needed to stare down at cleavages from the top floors of shopping malls, - you know, regular stuff which ideal big brothers teach the younger male lot in their family. Actually kids these days are smart enough to figure it out themselves, unlike the kids of my generation.

So my dear cousins, this year I resolve not to help you in any such activities, no matter how much you beg me. You have to discover the joys of being a man yourselves, kids. (Pssst... if you need any assistance, contact Sunil, my roommate. As most of you would know, his moral compass tilts in just about the same direction as mine and he doesn’t believe in stupid things like New Year resolutions. So get in touch with him)

3) I resolve to stop being a liar. That’s right in 2010, I resolve to adopt honesty as the bestest policy and embrace righteousness and truthfulness with the kind of vigour that would put the ghosts of Raja Harishchandra to shame. No more lying through my teeth this year folks– I am going to do away with a skill which comes to me as naturally as swimming to a duck or stripping to a Paris Hilton. It’s going to be honesty all the way in 2010, ladies and gentlemen... a spade will be called a spade, a shovel will be a shovel, and a pick-axe will be a pick-axe. So when my business unit manager asks for an honest opinion about his sucked up, bird brained, ass-tight management policies, you know what I’m gonna tell him. Likewise, when my obese-as-a-hippo female friend steps out of the trial room and asks me to honestly tell her if she looks a little fat in that new green dress, then you know what I will tell her as well.

4) I resolve to eat healthy and live better this year. No more junk-hogging this year. This would translate to no more than 3 visits to Pizza Hut per week and just one to McDonald's, that too only when I am really hungry. I will visit the Beijing Bites only to say hi to the waiters and will be resolute in my decision of not ordering any of the chows or the chopsueys while I am there. I will visit CCDs to just listen to the music and pop into the Baristas to only check out the floral decoration on the coffee table. Even if I'm tempted to order any of those jumbo tub popcorns during my mandatory weekly movie outings, I will eat only 10% of the stuff and then promptly pass over the tub to some random guy on the front row. I will tightly shut my eyes every time I pass by the street side chaat stalls, even if it means being possibly hit by a passing truck or something. I will eat on time and not play games of permutation and combination with my eating schedule – you know, the combining of breakfast with lunch, snacks with dinner, or breakfast with dinner and the like.

5) I will keep my ever-colourful swear and abuse vocabulary under check. For example, the word ‘Fuck’ will be used only in situations where extreme exclamations need to be conveyed under extreme circumstances. ‘Fuck’ will no longer be used as a sentence beginner or sentence ender in every conversation that I have. Likewise, I will no longer use the words ‘Madarchod and behenchod’ as expressions of endearment, affection, disappointment, admiration or as a mere exhaling sigh. They will be used only in moments of pure fury like road rage or quarterly performance appraisal meetings. I resolve to address people with respect in this year. Team leads and managers will no longer be called ‘Bastards’ when out of earshot. They will be called ‘differently born individuals’ henceforth. Also the Directors and Human resource executives who decide on the pay-hike policies will no longer be called ‘Madhafuckinsonsofbitches’. They will be called ‘kind souls with different sexual tastes’.

6) And the one resolution every single of you were looking forward to. I’ll strive to keep my yak-yakking tendencies under check and keep my posts short this year. Well, it shouldn’t be difficult, considering that I only write once in six months or whenever it’s time to vent out some steam – whichever is earlier. But you have my resolute word that I will make every effort to trim the length of my posts... its kinda chopping a flowing evening gown to make a crotch-exposing miniskirt, but I will try.

Alright, that’s it folks. That’s enough. I don’t want to make too many New Year resolutions because unlike the laws of the land, New Year resolutions should be strictly followed at all times. Plus, it is emotionally taxing to make up too many New Year resolutions since it ostensibly involves giving up something you deeply covet. One look at the list that I’ve drawn up, and I am already feeling low and terribly depressed imagining the stuff I have resolved to give up this year. Hopefully, a large slice of pizza over the latest video of ‘Girls Gone Wild’ should cheer me up. Hey no..... err... wait.

See you later friends, and once again, I wish you all a very Happy and Prosperous New Year or whatever.


P.S: It was exactly this day one year ago when I decided to create a blog called ‘Nonsense Aplenty’. I can’t believe an entire year has sped by with me goofing around and the blog is celebrating its first birthday today. I remember feeling that itch within me last year. I always wanted to do something noble and contribute wholeheartedly to the society. I felt a fire raging within me; wanting and yearning to write something about raging social issues like gender equality, right to education, women’s rights, upliftment of the downtrodden, eradication of poverty and other evils and the importance of valour, honesty, sincerity, loyalty and self-esteem in individuals. Thus to address these issues, ‘Nonsense Aplenty’ was born. Err... worst mistake of my life. But thank you for reading my blog. It certainly hasn’t enriched my life in any way, but I hope it has touched yours. Thank you for supporting ‘Nonsense Aplenty’ and making a difference to the society in particular and the Universe and the entire Milky Way in general (As a side note, does Amul own the Milky Way?).

Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Man Behind the Nonsense

Sit down.
Sit down, I say.
Attaboy. Attagal.

All the boys and girls out there piercing the air with their shrill seetis and dancing dhoom-dhadakka to celebrate my return to the blogosphere - please, sit down first. Now that I have your attention, please allow me to offer my obsequious apologies. I am sorry, but this is not a blog post. That's right, this is not one of those usual long blogposts which you've come to expect from me... you know, the kind of posts that add a couple of rings to the halo around your head, purify your soul and take you closer to nirvana. I want to clarify this at the very outset because I don’t want people to later feel that they were promised a full-blown Pizza party but only got garlic breads in return. I am not blogging because I am on a vacation. A break. A holiday. From everything. You see, months of play-acting at my workplace in good ol' Bangalore had taken a toll on me , so I decided now was a good time to come home for a small Diwali break and make a well deserved pit-stop in the corporate rat race. Well, Diwali has come and gone, but I have no intention of going back to work anytime soon - I've already extended my vacation twice. Tell me who would want to go back to work when you can as well stay in your hometown, plop an easy chair in your garden, snooze from sunrise to sunset, and glutton on Mom's dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. So I mumbled an excuse to my manager (the usual one - about falling ill without warning, being admitted to the hospital to get a CT scan done for a common cold and how the kind Doctor's advised for a week of compulsory bed rest and how sorry I feel about missing all the work and blah blah blah) and decided to stay put in my hometown for another week. So that is why I don’t want to write a proper blog post; I mean think of it – a cricketer doesn’t play cricket on his vacation, a software engineer doesn’t pretend to work while on vacation, a labourer doesn’t labor while on vacation, so why should a blogger blog on a vacation? Logical, na?

So I was just idling around on the Web, browsing inane sites and casually hopping from one blog to another, when I found this little tag on one of the blogs. It is the usual kind of tag, which requires you to answer a few questions about yourself that no one would otherwise care a hoot about. I have always steered clear of doing tags; answering mundane pre-set questions about oneself never really interested me. But 10 months and 20 posts later, I realized that there will be people who would want to know a little more about me.... awestruck people who look at my blog and wonder Wow! who is this guy, what planet does he come from, what does he eat, what color toothbrush does he use, what size banian does he wear, when do I get to slap him etc etc. So I decided now would be a good time to do one of those tags. Being on a vacation with not wanting to write proper blogposts, I thought doing a question-answer tag that requires no application or creativity is a novel way of passing time. And of course, to remind my readers how much I and my blog actually suck. Heh heh heh. Anyway, without further ado, up up and away here we go:

1. What is your current obsession?
Mobile phone cinematography. I would like to believe that I specialize in wildlife. Here’s a sample wildlife clip that I shot recently with my loyal Sony Ericsson W800i which undoubtedly shows off my extraordinary skill in err… wildlife cinematography. Here’s presenting- Kittu, the cat. National Geographic, here I come. (Apologies for the choppy video streaming, but I hope that doesn’t sully my résumé)

2. What are you wearing today?
A kurta, torn at the armpits and a pyjama, not torn anywhere.

3. What’s for dinner?
As I said I've come home for vacation. I asked Mom and Dad, both excellent cooks, to make me a simple, spartan home-cooked meal of Noodle Soup, Masala Papad, Butter kulchas, Shahi Mutter Paneer, steamed vegetable Biryani with dal and boondi raita, French fries, Gulab Jamun and Mango Lassi. Let’s see. But looking at the incredulous smirks on their faces, it looks like the only thing I'll be having for dinner tonight is a plate of humble pie.

4. What’s the last thing you bought?
Hmmm... a Gillette Series Shaving Foam and a pack of razor blades. Sadly, not many approve of my rustic, caveman like charm.

5. What are you listening to right now?
"Kyoon Keeda Hai Aapko" track from the movie that ought to be India's next entry to the Oscars - QuickGun Murugan. Yes, I listen to such songs.

6. What do you think about the person who tagged you?
In short, he is God’s best gift to mankind. Actually, in trousers also he is God’s best gift to mankind.
Yeah I know. I tagged myself.

7. If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you like it to be?
Does anybody happen to know if the White House is available for rent?

8. What are your three must-have pieces for summer?
A swimming trunk, a large banana leaf and a big stick.
The swimming trunk is needed when you decide to visit the beach and take a dip in the Sea to beat the heat. The banana leaf is needed when your swimming trunks slip away under you and gets lost into the Sea and you desperately need something to wrap yourself with immediately. The big stick comes in handy to shoo away hungry stray cows and goats who may be tempted to make a buffet delicacy out of your banana leaf.

9. If you could go anywhere in the world within the next hour, where would you go?
Which reminds me to take a bathroom break. I will be back shortly, excuse me please.

10. Which language do you want to learn?
Ok, I am back. New language eh? I'd like to learn an African tribal language like Zulu/Swahili. Actually, I've already learnt a few sentences like “Jingalala hurr, jhumbalala hurr, hurr hurrr”. Translated, that means “Good morning, what a pleasant day, would you bring me my tea please?”

11. What’s your favourite quote?
I like those little poetic quotes uttered by famous world personalities. Here's one such favourite quote of mine. This one begs a question... an enigmatic, mystic expression of doubt, a query of the unknown that seeks the answers from the powers that be. It goes something like

"Mary had a little lamb
The Black Sheep was asked if he had any wool
Lamb and sheep, never heard of 'em ever since...
Did they both end up under the butcher's tool?”
- Sir Parikshith Kumar.

Among the famous simplistic quotes, here is my favourite

"I came, I saw, I'm still seeing" - Sir Parikshith Kumar

And this one,

"Three fourths of the Earth's surface is covered with water. Whether it is a bounty of Nature or loss of real estate is for you to decide" - Sir Parikshith Kumar

I've got more, but I think I should stop now.

12. Who do you want to meet right now?
I would like to meet Michael Schumacher and ask him to return the Ferrari he borrowed from me the other day.

13. What is your favourite colour?
Blue. After watching the movie Blue however, I am tempted to change my favourite colour to a certain shade of pink. Heh heh ;-)

14. What is your favourite piece of clothing in your own closet?
A multipurpose piece of cloth that doubles up as a floor mop on weekdays and as a faded, tattered pair of denim trousers on weekends.

15. What is your dream job?
Film Critic. Ah that is my kind of job. Your employer pays you handsomely to park your ass in an air conditioned theatre, watch flicks and stuff yourself with caramel popcorn week after week. You then go on air and tell the world that the best part of the movie was the intermission. Next, you puncture a hole or two in the screenplay, suggest to the audience that the movie script can be used as tissue paper, and lament the fact that the heroine didn't show enough cleavage. Voila! your movie review is complete. Now would you hand over my fat pay check and remove the fly out of my champagne glass please? Thank you.

Well, if there are no vacancies for the post a film critic, then I would prefer any kind of job that pays me to snooze 12 hours a day. I mean isn’t that literally what they call a ‘dream job’? :-)

16. If you had $100 now, what would you spend it on?
I would buy gifts for my dear readers for patiently putting up with me and my blog for ten long months. You want to know what I’ll buy for you eh? Fork over that $100 first.

17. What do you consider a fashion faux pas?
Men wearing lungis on a windy day and finding themselves convert unwittingly into makeshift Marilyn Monroes.
Women wearing tight little T-shirts that are naturally designed hover a few inches over their belly buttons - and yet for some strange reason, keep tugging at them every 30 seconds in futile attempts to cover maximum.

18. Who according to you is the most over-rated style icon?
I am not really a style conscious person, but to answer this question, I guess it’s got to be Malaika Arora. Just the other day I saw a group of lady colleagues in my office pouring over a fashion mag that had a photograph of Malaika aunty in a so-called trendy outfit and gushing about the lady’s sense of dressing. Trust me, that so-called trendy outfit really looked no different than a piece of hurriedly stitched up automobile seat cover to me.

19. What kind of haircut do you prefer?
A dreadlocked Mohawk.
Err... not really. With due consideration to my hairline which is receding at the speed of light, I think it’s better it to keep it short and neat.

20. What are you going to do after this?
Use my thumb and forefinger to hit Alt+Tab, move over to another webpage and upload a special piece of code that will percolate into the lanes and bylanes of the Internet and eventually hit NASA’s servers that control geostationary satellites that are orbiting up there. Once I have the satellites in my control, I will direct them to hover right outside your window and spy over your shoulder as you type your password on your Netbanking account. Once I know your passwords that way, I will siphon all your money from your respective accounts, buy a yacht and a mansion in Jamaica and spend the rest of my life there, sipping coconut water and doing the reggae with random hotties. Muwahahahaha. So basically it’s just the remaining questions on this stupid tag that’s keeping me from my little trip to Jamaica. So would you mind if I proceed, please?

21. What are your favourite movies?
Since I am a decent boy and this is a decent PG12 family entertainment blog, I will not name movies like “Reshma ki Jawani”, “Jungal Mein Mangal”, “Naughty Bahurani” , “Bhoot Ka Choot” etc here. Chee chee chee. So let me stick to the clean ones. Among my favourites are the Sanjay Dutt- John Abraham starrer “Zinda”, the legendary DDLJ and the Hollywood blockbuster “A Few Good Men”.

22. What’s your favourite magazine?
Again since this is a family place, I wouldn’t mention the Playboy. So I will lie and tell you that I like The Week, The India Today, Tinkle, Amar Chitra Katha etc etc.

23. What inspires you?
Almost everything... from people’s stupidity- which inspires me to be different from them to people’s ingeniousness – which inspires me to do better than them.

24. Give us three styling tips that always work for you.
1) After three days of usage, turn your socks inside out, spray some deodorant on them and wear them for three more days. Yoo hoo! Same socks, but a different shade.
2) As everyone keeps hamming “Always wear something that you are comfortable in”. By that logic, you should be wearing your night dress to your office.
3) Never leave your house without a handkerchief. What if your dear bike needs immediate dusting?

25. Coffee or Tea?

26.What do you do when you are feeling low or terribly depressed?
Watch any movie that features Tusshar Kapoor/ Hurman Baweja / Adhyayan Suman / Emran Hashmi / Kamal Rashid Khan or alternatively, watch the contestants of Big Boss or any other reality show on TV for an hour or so. Then walk upto the mirror, put on a big smile and say “It’s OK Parry, relax, there are far bigger losers than you out there.”

27. What is the meaning of your name?
Etymology: “Pariksha” (Hindi/Sanskrit), meaning ‘Tested or put to test’.
Parikshith means ‘the one who is proven’. The one who has cleared all the tests he was put through (includes University examinations). The one who is inquisitive and examines everything minutely. The one who has received a stamp of approval from the Gods. You’ve seen those little stickers on clothing, crockery and electronic gadgets that say “Tested OK”? Yes, that’s what my name is all about. “Tested OK”.

28. How many more questions to go before this rubbish ends?
Three or four.

29. Wow, really?
Shut up and read.

30. Which other blogs do you love visiting?
Anand Ramachandran’s Son of Bosey – which is one of the funniest blogs I’ve ever come across so far. With each blog post designed as a rubbish, satirical press release, this blog has undoubtedly provided me some of my biggest laughs on the blogosphere. If you like nonsense humor, then I strongly suggest that you check out this blog. I’ll bet the hyenas that you’ll laugh until your belly hurts.
P.S For the information of all cricket aficionados, this guy also writes some absolutely hilarious articles on cricket and cricketers in the Heavy Ball section of Cricinfo Page 2. Check it out too.

And then we have that incredibly funny, adorable mountain-witch called Silverine. Anjali Philip, with her witty, sarcasm- laced humour has provided me some really memorable ROFL moments on the blogosphere. The best thing about this blog is that Ms. Philip has a rib-tickling update every week (usually on Mondays, so one yaay! for that), so you can have one big ROFL moment guaranteed every week. Muuuuuaaaah Anjali, I love you. Please excuse my body odor and accept a biiiiiigg bear hug from me.
P.S: Anjali, if you love me too, please reciprocate the feelings by waving excitedly at the computer screen, squinting your eyes and touching your nose with the tip of your tongue – all simultaneously.

Apart from the two maniacs listed above, my other regular sources of smiles and laughter include G3, Bullshee, Barun, Blunt Edges, Shanu and a host of others. Keep rocking guys! You’ve made so many of my days!

31. Which is that one blog post of yours that you consider to be a personal favourite?
Now this is like asking me to sift through a garbage mound and identify the piece of scrap that I find most appealing, but to answer the question, I like the ‘Love Poetry on Valentine’s Day’ post I had written on, you guessed it, Valentine’s Day. I won the Nobel Prize for Nonsense for that.

32. Favorite Dessert/Sweet?
Rasmalai. For that matter, I am attracted to just about any sweet. I am an ant in human guise.

33. Favorite Season?
Friends – Season 4.

34. If I come to your house now, what would you cook for me?
Bheja Fry.

35. What are you afraid of most?
That this tag will never end, that I will go on typing and typing and typing, and you will go on reading and reading and reading, and we’ll all die typing/reading and end up as skeletons slumped on our chairs with cobwebs for company.

Phew! Looks like I am done.
I tag: Everyone who featured on Question 30. Well, depending on your levels of joblessness, all of you reading this are welcome to take up this tag too.
I will be back with a proper blogpost soon. Till then, keep yourself safe,healthy and sane. Have fun!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Play, dear Boy!!

Disclaimer: This post may offend you. Don't believe me? Go ahead and read it then.
Today, I stand in the twilight of my bachelor life and my singlehood. Two more years to go before I take the reluctant, suicidal plunge into matrimony (Dad says one year- but I’ve bargained for two). I’ve had an eventful life so far. In fact, looking at the types of misadventures I’ve had as a student and a bachelor, I can only thank my lucky stars and my pseudo- good boy image for not having been thrown into a prison cell or something. One of my regrets is that time has passed too quickly. The only other regret I have is that I feel I haven’t expressed my gratitude to people who’ve made my life special. I have always been guilty of taking people for granted, and I haven’t said enough thank you’s to the individuals who’ve made a positive difference in my life. The time has come to set things right.

Today, I want to take the opportunity to extend my heartfelt thank-you’s to two such people who in their own unique ways, have made a significant impact in my bachelor life. I want to say thank you to Hugh Hefner- the creator of Playboy and Tiffany Taylor- ex Playboy playmate and one of the finest soft-porn divas to grace the planet.

Statutory Warning: Careful! If you are in your office, then please do not Google for Tiffany right now. If you are at home staying with your folks, then wait until your folks go to sleep or step outside of the house, and then Google for her. Or else, make sure that you shut and latch the door of your room before opening her wallpapers. If you are a girl, you may not have met Tiffany before today, but I guess by now you may have already Wikied or Googled for her, driven by your standard why-is-this-man-complimenting-another-girl curiosity. Well, if you hadn’t Wikied/Googled already, then I know you will surely do it now! And if you are a man, then bastard, I know that you know all about her... you probably know her vital statistics better than your company’s Q3 earnings. :-)

Anyway, coming back to the point, Tiffany and I go back a very long way. In fact one of the first female tits that I ever saw properly during my adolescent life were hers. So therefore the bond that I share with Tiffany is deeper and more sentimental than the connection that I share with, say, an Alison Angel or a Priya Rai (again, look left, right, aagey, peeche before Googling for their images). As Generation-X boys, we attended high-school in an era when Internet and electronic media (CD’s, 8 GB USB drives, .avi files or high res- .jpeg images) were not as rampant as they are today. The access to free online streaming or downloadable porn- something as common as bread-butter-toast today- was like an unthinkable, unaffordable luxurious five-star meal for us ten years ago. In fact during my high-school days, the only sources of porn for us boys were a) biology textbooks b) torn and crumpled pages from Debonair or Playboy c) video cassettes of Mallu porn – showing blurred images of ugly, fat aunties making love to uglier fat uncles in a dingy room with Carnatic classical music for background score. (Ladies- I know you may be shocked, but you don’t exactly expect boys to be interested in dressing up pink Barbie dolls and playing with cushy little teddy bears do you?) .

Taking a nostalgic trip down the memory lane, today I laughingly recall the concept of ‘half-boob’ that was so popular in my high-school days. You see, in my tenth standard, we had about 35 boys in our class vying for a single copy of Playboy – the only legacy copy which we had ‘inherited’ from our seniors. We boys used to compete with each other- usually by organizing rounds of arm wrestling- with the winner taking home the grand bumper prize of the solitary Playboy copy for an entire night of ‘private viewing’ . But gradually, as the testosterone levels shot up and the demand outgrew supply, a single copy of Playboy was rendered utterly insufficient. That is when we came up with the ingenious concept of ‘half-boob’ – in which a single photo of a topless model was torn right at the centre of her cleavage into two pieces. The piece of paper with the left boob was handed to somebody and the piece with the right boob was handed over to someone else! That way, we ensured that most of our mates had at least one boob each at their disposal every day. And it didn’t stop here – you see if you’ve ever torn a topless model’s photo apart at her chest ( it used to break our hearts, but we had only one Playboy with us, so we had to do it) you’ll know that the other unimportant parts of her body like face and hair would be torn into half too. Unfortunately, this made the identification of the photos very difficult. So, being the teenaged geniuses that we were, we came up with the idea of code-labelling the boobs. For example, if it was Alicia’s boobs that were being divided, then each scrap of the photo was labelled Al. R (Alicia right) and Al. L (Alicia left) at the bottom right corner. Similarly Betty’s separated pair of assets were labelled Bet. R and Bet. L respectively and so on. We made sure that the labelling was done with a very thin lead-pencil and the letters were marked as small as possible and as much to the bottom-right edge of the photo as possible – to ensure that the attention was not diverted from the main showpiece content of the photo. You may be wondering what happened to the photos that had full nudity. Simple – unlike the topless photos that were bisected, these types of photos were trisected. I’ll leave the rest for errr... your imagination.

And it didn’t stop here. We were a very bright bunch of boys (most of us have grown up today to become successful techies, doctors, MBA grads, air force pilots and wizards in the creative field) and we had our logistics firmly in place. We maintained a centralized register that kept track of all the ‘half boobs’ that were being circulated. This register consisted of a table that listed the name of the left boob, name of the right boob, current owner of the left and right boobs, due-date when the lefts and rights were to be exchanged between the ‘boob-buddies’ ( for ex. The boys who owned, say, Al R. and Al. L on that particular day were boob-buddies, who were supposed to exchange their respective half boobs within the due-dates listed). This centralized register actually was a sheet, which we had torn right off from our official class attendance register- because the rows and columns with printed dates on them made them very convenient to maintain our boob inventory. The responsibility of maintaining this centralized register usually fell upon the brightest lad in our class- the class monitor. Come on, he was made the class monitor because he was the brightest lad, and we knew we could trust him with the logistics. The exchange of the half -boobs usually happened during our lunch-breaks, in a clandestine, synchronized operation. The scraps of paper with the half boobs were innocuously hidden inside our Maths classwork notebooks and exchanged between the respective boob-buddies. I remember being really excited about this exchange program.... it was my long-awaited turn to know if Betty’s right boob really looked any different from her left counterpart. Anyway, this is when I saw Tiffany Taylor (code Ti L. and Ti R.) for the first time. Unbelievable! I was overwhelmed by that woman... had she proposed to me, I would have readily said ‘Yes’ to her then and there. She was the epitome of beauty, so smoking-hot that a piece of butter dropped on her lissome body would have probably melted away in nanoseconds. Even though I found everyone else ‘nice’, I was especially partial to Ti L. and Ti. R. My kaminey friends had even nicknamed me as Tiffany Kumar. Some sense of humor they had, I tell you.

Everything went like clockwork for about 6 months or so. But it took just one afternoon for our entire porn infrastructure to collapse. You see, I happened to study in a co-ed school. We boys took painstaking care to cloak our self-built porn network in a thick veil of secrecy and ensure that none of the girls in our class got any wind of it. We boys were actually worried that the girls in our class were not as sexually erudite as us and would freak out like hell at the thought of half-boobs being exchanged in their presence. We were convinced that those girls didn’t even know how to spell ‘sex’. At that time, we believed our female classmates’ probable idea of reproduction was something like: “Man gets married to a woman. During the first night, man and woman shake hands with each other and poof! , a baby drops right down from the skies.” And to add fuel to our suspicion, girls in our class had the reputation of being cribby, complainy little twats who could not be trusted to keep secrets. Hence we ensured that our network of porn was only known to the ‘men of the class’.

But one fine fateful afternoon, shortly after we were done with our customary exchange program during the lunch break, it so happened that one of our boys had carelessly left a photo of Jessica’s left boob (Jes L.) unattended on his desk. One of our girl classmates, oblivious to this rare blip, was quietly having her lunch in a corner of the classroom. As luck would have it, a strong gust of wind came through the open window and blew the photo of Jessica’s boob right across the classroom and straight into the girl’s lunch box! “Aieeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!” . A bloodcurdling, high-pitched female scream echoed right through the classroom, sending shivers down the school corridors. That was it. The was the end of our story.

You need not be an Einstein to guess what happened next. But for the record- we boys were marched to Principal Sir’s chambers, made to stand in a line, and caned mercilessly on our bums until the brown cheeks turned scarlet red. Bloody Principal, he would have probably spent the whole of the previous night fondling his mistresses’ boobs, but if we students exchanged porn likewise, then it was a crime. Some justice, bah! Anyway, the punishment was pronounced and each one of us were suspended from school for 2 days (which we merrily spent playing cricket in the neighbourhood fields). However, the poor boy in the centre of the storm – the one who happened to own Jes L. at that point of time - didn’t have it so lucky. He was suspended from school for 5 days, a complaint letter was posted to his residential address, and was told that he would be allowed to re-join the school only if he summoned his Dad to the Principal’s chambers.

Let me tell you something- we boys were not the ones to take things lying down. We fifteen- year olds were all lust filled scumbags alright, but we were really feisty fifteen-year olds. We had tremendous guts, we were boys of integrity and we were united in our cause. We felt responsible for the poor guy who got caught, and so we set ourselves upon a path of redemption. Our first stop was the town post-office, where it took about 50 bucks to bribe the head postmaster, and about 5 minutes to nip the Principal’s letter from the postal room and tear it to shreds. Our next stop was at the neighbourhood pani-puri waala’s stall, where it took another 50 bucks to convince the paani-puri waala to pose as our friend’s Dad and meet the Principal. Man, you should’ve seen that guy’s performance at the Principal’s office- he would have won a Filmfare for sure!

We passed out of tenth standard soon after and dispersed into various colleges for our PUCs (equivalent to eleventh and twelfth standard-FYI) and subsequently to do our engineering/medicine/other stupid professional courses, and therefore our half boob network was unplugged naturally. My engineering college years (2001-2005) were pure bliss, I tell you. It makes me proud and patriotic to say that in any corner of our country, the words “male engineering student” and “porn aficionado” would count as true synonyms. In fact an engineering student is not considered to be an engineering student if he hasn’t seen a porn movie or two in his grad life (I am speaking only for the men. I have no clue about the female engineering students’ porn habits; you can probably enlighten me in the comments section). Engineering years were the time when technology around us truly changed trends. Internet became cheaper, faster and more accessible. No more half-boobs, we had the entire models for ourselves – movies, still-photos, wallpapers, animation, any category with any number of X’s – you name it, click, tap and presto there it was! The rickety 1.4 MB Sony floppies slowly made began to make way to CD RW’s and USB drives. But for people like me and most of my batch mates, who had an average of 10 GB porn stashed away in a hard-drive of 20 GB capacity (well, we used to save a couple of GB’s here and there for our engineering study files too) – those floppies, CD’s, pen drives- hen drives and other tiddly little pieces of storage junks were never sufficient. We generally used to take a screw-driver, dismantle the entire hard-disk drive from our CPUs, carry them over to friends’ places and exchange our files in bulk! Even during those days, Tiffany stayed close to me. Only now, I had the bonus of seeing her in 16-bit colour and various cinematic avatars.

The funniest part of engineering-day adventures was the way we guys stored and hid our files in our PCs. You see, during those days most of us lived with our folks at home and sometimes our folks happened to use our PC’s for browsing, checking mails etc. Therefore, we really had to take extra care and precaution in disguising our precious files. (Wish I had a personal laptop then, but back then laptops were not sold as cheap as bananas, as they are today). One of the common places to stash porn in was the Windows System32 folder. It was a perfect hiding place – trust me nobody other than you would have ever cared to peep in there, even by accident. And sometimes, if our personal hard-disks were packed to capacity, we stored the remaining of our colorful files in another safe hiding place – in the PC’s inside the computer labs of our college.

And then there were those innocent folder names that we came up with. For example I had all my Tiffany wallpapers and videos stored inside a hidden folder which was named as “Database_Project_Documentation”. Other folders that housed our sleazy bits-and-bytes were banally named as “System_Architecuture_Research” or “Java_Interview_Questions” or some other geeky name which would have never aroused the curiosity of non-computer savvy folks at home who shared the computer. And we were successful too. However, I knew one friend of mine, an absolute jackass, who stuffed all his hardcore triple-x videos into a folder, named it as “Devotional_Songs” and stored it, of all places, in “My Documents”. One day his Grandmother was apparently in the mood for some hari-bhajans and asked his Dad if he could play some religious music for her. The Dad escorted the Grandmother to the PC, straightaway opened “My Documents”, looked around and to his delight came up to this new “Devotional_Songs” folder which his son had created. Needless to say, he went on and double-clicked on the first available file. Well, I do not have the exact details of what happened next, but rumor had it that my friend spent the next two nights sleeping on a platform at the city railway station.

*Sigh*, those were the days. Time has marched on since then, in its own inexorable way. Today, I am a 26-year old who’s been there and seen that. Today, I live on my own, have a laptop, a broad-band connection and the goddamn liberty of doing whatever I wish to. But still, I miss those days, miss those crumpled sheets of half-boobs, miss those folder aliases and miss that clandestine, cat-and-mouse excitement that was such a part and parcel of my life. Just yesterday me and a friend of mine were casually browsing the Playboy site when we guys happened to chance upon an image of Tiffany. That brought all the wonderful mammaries memories flooding back. Today, as I stand in the twilight of my bachelor life, I want to pause and express my gratitude to these people who made a difference to me and million other men like me. Thank you Playboy, thank you Tiffany and thank you all other gorgeous divas for shedding your clothes and making a world of difference for me and millions of my ilk.

Until later,

P.S: For all you people who are itching to give me gyaan about how porn can be sheer gross and a manifestation of a sick mind and against the will of God and blah blah blah, you are welcome to go ahead and waste your time. You’ll only end up pissing on the wrong tree. :-)

Friday, September 11, 2009

Road Romeo


I am back. Now I won’t be offering any reasons for my month long disappearance from the blogging world, because by now everyone knows what keeps me away- yep, the dreaded W word called Work. Life continues to be busy for the late-working, dinner-skipping, acidity-suffering, Gelusil-chewing, excuse of a human being called me. However for the next three hours or so, I have no work to do, as I await a series of shit reports to be delivered to me. So rather than spend the free time scrounging for porn on the Internet, I decided to come online and vent some steam on the blogosphere. All at my readers’ expense of course hahaha.

Let me tell you something about myself today. I am usually a calm, unflappable character. I hardly get worked up, agitated or angry. Please don't heed the shaking heads, muted no's, and other forms of denial that may possibly come your way from people who know me (my friends, especially). They are ignorant little weasels who don't possess the finesse of judging human behaviour. So therefore, please take only my word for gospel - I am usually a cool, unflappable character who never gets worked up. I mean even if you were to wake me up from my sleep at 3 A.M, douse me with a bucket of cold water and poke my ears with a straw- I would never get mad at you at all. Instead, you will actually find me sporting a sweet smile, throwing flying kisses and giving you jadoo-ki-jhappis in return. Really. Nothing drives me mad. Well, you may often find me smashing a glass or two to the ground every other day- but that is not because I get angry... it’s just that I like to observe the rare arty-farty kaleidoscopic designs which the shattered glass pieces make on the floor. You may occasionally catch me smashing a mobile phone to smithereens against a wall, but hey I don't do that because I get angry - I only do that because I am sometimes overcome with unbridled fascination and curiosity to explore the innards of the mobile phone and discover how those little pieces of electronic junk assemble to form such a wonderful communication device. For the information of cricket lovers, I am like Steve Waugh - who just stands there, calmly chewing gum at mid-off, even as the opposing batsmen thrash the nuts out of his fast bowlers. For the information of non-cricket lovers, I am like Buddha- always serene and tranquil. For the information of film buffs, I am always as composed as Dharmendra Pierce Brosnan waala James Bond- who manages to sport the same deadpan expression and unruffled demeanor even as the bad guys threaten to blow his bums to bits with a bazooka. (Pierce Brosnan's James Bond was calm and composed even while having sex - I am not sure if I'd be able to attain that level of composure)

So given my ice-cool nature, you may be wondering what does it take to tick me off. What would you need to do to invoke the utterly uncharacteristic emotions of anger and fury in me? Well, do just one thing- meet me on the roads. And better still, drive recklessly in my vicinity and endanger a few lives here and there. And then top it off by breaking a traffic rule under my nose. That’s it- you’ll see fumes and lava spewing out of me. Whenever I spot someone jumping a red-light or honking incessantly behind me, or overtaking from the left side or zooting past me at 100 kmph in a 10kmph zone, it sends blood rushing to my head. Whenever I see an idiot around on the road breaking a traffic rule, I lose my temper.... the Steve Waugh in me converts into a Sreesanth, the Buddha makes way to a fiery Narasimha, and the Pierce Brosnan transforms into a deadly combo of Dharam paaji- Sunny paaji-and Zanjeer waala Amitabh Bachchan. What to do... I yam like this wonly! I have been paranoid about road discipline and road safety since long ages, since times immemorial, since... well, even before my parents conceived me. In kindergarten, when I heard that Yankee Doodle went to town riding on a pony, my prime concern was whether he wore a helmet. And trust me, had I been on the spot, I would have pelted that careless Engine driver with stones and had him thrown into jail for breaking the poor piggy’s bones. That right, I am a road romeo with a road rage.

In Bangalore – heck why only Bangalore- in the whole of our country, breaking traffic rules is a banal, commonplace affair. Most of us Indians pride ourselves on being the maharajas of the roads, and hey you don’t make rules for the maharajas do you? Anywhere you go; any road you travel on, you’ll see that the drivers follow few rules except “Me First”. Whether it’s jumping a signal, or zigzagging between multiple lanes or taking a quick detour into the wrong side of a one-way street while no cop is watching- you name it and we’ve done it. It also helps our cause that the winky-blinky traffic lights are usually defunct and the lane markers on the road are almost non-existent. Actually, lane markers on our roads are stuff which jokes are made of. I’m dead sure that a majority of you reading this are scratching your heads, thinking “Huh? What lane markers is he talking about?” No, I am not blaming you. Nobody gives a hoot about those insignificant lane markers anyway – they have just ended up being a waste of white and yellow paints and those reflector thingies, if you ask me. I think the Government should stop spending such obscene amounts of rupees on those white and yellow colored paints and instead utilize the money to fund a welfare programme for underprivileged software engineers (like me) . At least it will do some good to somebody!

Zebra-crossings are another of my pet peeves. Time and again, I have tried to randomly pick and educate my fellow citizens, especially the pedestrians on the road on the importance of using a zebra-crossing to get across a busy street. Needless to say, my pedestrian advice always falls on deaf ears. I don’t understand these senseless imbeciles – they would prefer to scurry across a busy intersection and get crushed like mice under speeding trucks rather than safely use a zebra crossing and live to die another day. Here are a few instances, where I picked on such erring, random strangers and tried to drill some road sense into their thick skulls.

Me: “Array sir, you should walk on the zebra crossing”
Sir: “Oh you mean that black and white piano thingy on the road? Sure someday I’ll walk on it and get a decent tune out of it. Muwahahaha.”
Me: “Array Aunty, why don’t you use the zebra-crossing while crossing the road? It is meant for people like you...”
Aunty: “Haan? Kya bola?!!! Lafangey kahinke, do I look like a zebra to you? *SLAP!*
Me: “Array o bhai. What’s painted down there is a zebra-crossing, not an M.F Hussain artwork. You are supposed to walk on it, not stare at it”
Bhai: ????????
Me: “Yo dude, have you ever crossed on the zebra?”
Dude: “Huh? Come again dude? What bra?”

*Sigh* . You know what, I have actually given up on advising people. I really don’t give a damn now- I mean if people are so hell bent on getting themselves killed, then who am I to stop them?

When it comes to our driving etiquettes, the less said the better. Every day, hundreds of deranged men and women drive amuck on our roads , endorsing the popular road safety maxim “The-roads-belong-to-my-father-in-law”. For these men and women, driving patiently in a single lane is considered to be an act of insult. Speaking of women, there is a common myth world over that women make terrible drivers. I certainly don’t buy that myth. You visit any joke website and you’ll see that hundreds of jokes have been made of women and their driving skills, especially their turning, reversing and parking skills ( Actually, I have created some jokes of my own and uploaded them too... but ssshhhhh...don’t tell this to anybody, if you do I’ll deny it straightaway) . Actually I’d like to go one step further say that women make better drivers than men- not just better, but more skilful, efficient and adventurous. Believe me. Seriously. While most of the men drive in the same old boring way with both hands on the steering wheel, the women actually have a riskier, daredevil style of driving – jostling through a busy street with one hand on the wheel and the other hand busy tucking locks of hair behind their ears - or busy applying moisturizing lip balm - or busy searching for tissues inside their handbags - or busy rummaging through the dashboard to find an elusive copy of the instruction manual titled “How To Identify the Clutch, Brake, Accelerator”. So tell me, aren’t they more skilful?
Hahahahaha. Alright, now stop going giving me those steely cold stares my dear ladies. Don’t go grrr at me. I’m sorry- no more jibes from my side- I will shut up. I parrrrramisssse. Actually just the other day, a few of my dear female friends, sick and tired of me constantly making fun of women and their mannerisms on my blog, gheraoed and threatened me with dire consequences if I didn’t mend my ways. “Ok smarty boy...” said one of my friend, wagging a threatening forefinger at me “.... one more wisecrack on women on your blog and that’s it. We’ll drag you to the marketplace, tie you to a tree, strip you naked and hire hundreds of gay men to ogle at you” . I was even forcibly made to take an enlarged printout of the Eleventh Commandment of Male Chivalry, attach a two-rupee revenue stamp on it, sign, frame and hang it on my wall. FYI – the Eleventh Commandment of Male Chivalry says- “Thou shalt not make fun of really stupid women.” Anyway, the whole point of raking up the issue about female drivers is to narrate this unforgettable incident I had on the roads with one of their ilk. Now this is going to unnecessarily lengthen the post, but if you’ve read this far, then chances are you probably don’t have anything better to do right now- so why not sit back and read on?

Circa 2006. There I was, merrily riding away on my bike, the cool wind whistling thru my helmet visor and a cool song whistling thru my lips. I spot this car on the road in front of me. A silver Lancer Cedia it was. "Wow! , what a beauty..." , I remark to myself, in all admiration. "Someday, when I stop earning peanut shells for money and get digging on real pay dirt, I'll have a car better than this adorning my garage..." I silently promise myself, thumping a fist over my heart. We approach a 4-way intersection, with me keeping safe distance behind the metallic diva, when its blinky right-indicator signal pops on. Then, the automatic window rolls down and a fair, delicate, freshly-waxed female hand pops out briefly and points to the right. "Wow!, what a beauty... smoothie pie...” I remark to myself, in all admiration. “Someday, when I really get oye-lucky-lucky-oye, I’ll have a hand smoother than that caressing my face...” I silently promise myself, thumping another fist over my heart. Anyway, I had to proceed straight ahead, so I slow down at the intersection to bid a farewell glance at the silver beauty. And then the unthinkable happens. The car, instead of turning right at the intersection veers sharply to the left, directly onto my path, knocking my bike over and sending me crashing down to the asphalt. I take a tumble, the bike takes two, and both of us- man and machine - lie side by side on the road, with almost the wind knocked off us. A few good Samaritans rush to my aid and help me and my bike on our feet. I shake my head to bring myself to senses and surmise the damage. My palms, forearms, knees and ankles were severely scuffed and had blood oozing out of them. My head had taken a conk- but thanks to the helmet and my thick skull, I survived to tell the tale. I thought I was fine- until I looked at my bike. That is when I lost it. My bike, my darling of my bike, stood there shedding tears of engine-oil and crying in pain - her handlebar lay severely twisted, her mud-guard had a gash, her fuel tank had a moon-sized crater on it, she was bruised all over and one of her indicator lights was smashed to pieces!

*Pop* *Kaboom* . A fuse goes bust in my head, rising the temperatures within me and sending my blood into evaporation mode. I look around for the bloody car and its nincompoop occupant responsible for my misery. Wow, I mean how did this driver even attend her driver’s license examination? Through postal correspondence? Indicator to the right, hand signal to the right, turn to the left! Fantastic! For a moment, I feel inclined to salute, bow down and doff my helmet at her Columbus-like sense of direction. The car halts briefly at a distance, and the driver pops her head out of the window, probably wondering what the hullabaloo was all about. “Ohoooooy!!” I shake my fist and let out a bloodcurdling scream at the driver, sending the Earth quivering and causing a few startled birds to flutter away from the nearby tree-tops. “Ohoy bitch! Get out of the fucking car”. Bitch comes out of the car, slams the door and glowers at me. That is when I first notice her properly. She didn’t look a day older than 19, her seemingly pretty face marked with distinct cockiness and insouciance. Her jaws were busy chewing gum and her hands were just as busy tucking large strands of wavy, unruly hair( highlighted with different shades of maroon, brown and hold on, purple?) behind her pierced ears. Dressed in a skin-fitting jeans and sleeveless T-shirt that had transparent bra-straps distinctly poking out of it, she looked every bit of a rich dad’s spoilt brat. Interesting side note- Ladies, what’s the theory behind those transparent bra-straps anyway? Girls probably wear them thinking they are invisible but yet everyone makes them out. Anyway, I don’t know much about all these things, so I’ll keep my opinions to myself. But just one more question- are those bras transparent only at the straps or do they have transparent cups too? Muwahahahaha. Oops sorry- I forget I’ve promised not to make fun of you. Sorry-sorry. Anyway, coming back to the incident, at that point of time I was in no mood to admire breast contours. I stood there injured and infuriated, and believe me, I would have probably devoured any man, woman or animal that dared to cross my path at the time.

“Come over here, you bitch. Look what you’ve done” I scream at the girl.

Her expression turns livelier and angrier. No one, apparently, had called her a bitch before. But then, it was my fault too. In that moment of fury, I forgot to abide by the Twelfth Commandment of Male Chivalry which said “Thou shalt not call a woman a bitch. Even if she drives a car over thy bum” .

“Hey man, what did you say?” she retorts, taking a few steps towards me.

“I said, bitch, if you don’t know how to drive on the roads, then you should keep your fucking car and your fucking ass locked up in your fucking garage” I scream back.

“Hey no gaalis dude, I come from an educated family” she says with a toss of her head.

Her response causes the temperatures within my body to shoot a few more degrees to the north.

“I will fuck your entire family...” I retort. “... And besides, didn’t your educated family teach you the basic difference between left and right?”

She casually casts a look at me, and another at my disfigured bike. She spits her chewing gum out, points a palm at me and says in a condescending tone “Array theek hai na bhaiyya. Ab kyun bekaar mein nautanki macha rahe ho. Sirf indicator hi toh toota hai. Ab jaan thodi na liya hai maine”

*Pop* *Kaboom* , another fuse goes bust in my brain, sending smoke billowing out of my ears. This was too much. First she veers the other way. Then she conks me off my bike. Then instead of giving me an apology, she gives me attitude. Then, she calls me “bhaiyya!” . Even for the otherwise calm and composed me, this was too much to handle.

“Oh! Aisa hai kya...?” I scream. I then take two paces sidewards, bend down and pick up a large stone from the pavement. And in one quick, slinging motion, I smash one of the indicator lights of her car into pieces!!!

Her cocky red face goes purple with shock. She stands agape. Time stands still.

“Whaaaaat thaaaa fuuuuuccckkkk....” she shrieks, her voice rising in a Philharmonic orchestra-like crescendo “Hey you, what the fuck have you done? Gone mad or what?”

I throw the stone away and puff the dust off my hands. Putting on the same condescending tone I reply “Array theek hai na behenji. Ab kyun bekaar mein nautanki macha rahe ho. Sirf indicator hi toh toota hai. Ab jaan thodi na liya hai maine”

“You b-b-bbastard, I will call the police”

“Call the Prime Minister, I don’t care” I say and limp away from the scene.

It’s now been three years since that road rage incident. Let me put this on print – I regret that incident today. I know I shouldn’t have behaved like that, no matter what the circumstance was. I wish I could go back in time, do a Ctrl + Z with a magic wand in air and undo that incident. But as I said, what happened was three years ago, and I was quite a petulant lad back then – unlike the aforementioned calm, composed, mature gentleman whom the damsels crazily fall in love with today. Err...Ahem. I mean if the same incident and scene of events were to unfold today, then the new, mature me would have handled it differently – I would have reacted by smashing her windshield turning the other cheek and offering her a bunch of tulips instead.

Now this may sound like a cow advising fellow cows against chewing the cud, but take my word folks, please keep your road rage under check – it is simply not worth it. I may have learnt and wizened the hard way time and again, but I have certainly come to realize that one of the most effective ways to live long enough to see your grandchildren is to maintain your calm, be responsible on the roads and reach home safely to the joy of your loved ones. So before you jump the next red light or scurry mindlessly across a busy street or drive like a possessed Rossi or Schumacher, please spare a fleeting thought for your dear ones waiting for you at home. Spare a thought for your poor folks- who worry for you, care for you, think about you and utter a silent prayer for your safety every time you head out of your gates.

Ok ji, chalo bahut ho gaya, ab dukan bandh kar dete hain. Adios amigos, see you later. I gotta get back to my work. Cheers! Remember to play it safe- wear your helmets, play it safe- wear your seatbelts, play it safe- wear your condoms. Errr... I know condoms have nothing to do with this post, but hey, what’s the harm in spreading some awareness anyway?

Thanking You
Yours obnoxiously,
Parikshith Kumar.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Travel Aplenty

*Statutory Warning: Achtung! Long post! Please read it only if you are OK with lengthy nonsensical posts that add no value whatsoever. If long, ranting blog posts are not your cup of tea, then please refrain from reading this and go read a haiku or something. Don’t tell me later that I didn’t warn you :-)*

Hella yeverybaddy! Long time! It’s so nice to come back and breathe the air in blogosphere and flaunt my two-bit existence in this esteemed web space. I know I’ve been away for a while. I know I haven’t been blogging regularly. I know I haven’t been able to visit your blogs and leave you smiling or scowling with my unsolicited comments. My bad. Ok I admit that I’m not too happy about my irregularity and I kinda feel guilty about my prolonged absence from blogosphere (so please don’t rub it in by sneering at your computer screens and ask “Why the fuck have you come back?” ). I don’t get to show my cheery face (as cheery as the Joker in Dark Knight) on the cyberspace too much these days. My Orkut/Facebook pals think I’ve either vanished into thin air or ran away to the Himalayas. The entire legion of my loyal fans (mostly hot lingerie supermodels) is fretting about my unexplained disappearance. And my readers, oh, they’ve gone on a rampage, I tell you. There is widespread distress, concern and grief among the people due to my no-show on the blogosphere. Now don’t you roll your eyes, I am telling you the truth. Look at some of these distressed comments expressed by my loyal readers themselves, in verbatim.

“Ever since the Parikshith has blog writing stop, my the buffalo has milk giving stop”
-Ramu Pandey, the colony’s doodhwala

“It is so sad that Parikshith is not updating his blog on regular basis. His blog is an epitome of modesty and honesty and always makes very educative reading. He seems so busy these days that he doesn’t even visit my blog also”
- Muniamma, house-maid.

“Not a day passes without us wondering when Parikshith would come back and enthral us with his next post. Ever since he stopped posting, the light has gone off our lives.... as if the Lord has switched off a tube light in Heaven.”
- Dan Brown

“Forget the blog, Parikshith told me that he would visit me last night and promised me that we’d spend some cosy time together, but he didn’t turn up. He ditched me. I spent the whole night tossing and turning in the bed all alone and cried until my pillows were wet. Why o why o why, Parikshith?”
-Angelina Jolie

“Jolie, you bitch, Parikshith is mine!!!”
-Megan Fox

“My business has gone down ever since Mr. Kumar stopped uploading his blog. People would take printouts of his blog to use them as makeshift toilet papers, and I made great business selling printer-sheets. Now I am incurring losses. Please come back and write, Mr. Kumar”
- Mr.H.P Paperwalla, stationery shop owner.

“Parikshith, who?”
-Followers of Nonsense Aplenty.

Well Ladies and Gentlemen, these are only a few of the comments that I have received... there are plenty more, yeh toh sirf sample hai. My being away from cyberspace can be attributed to only one solitary reason yaar - the dreaded W word- Work! Yes, the past month or so has all been about work, more work and some more work for me, the poor old IT professional. I’ve been so busy working that I have to book my calendar to find time to scratch my back. I mean, forget visiting blogs, I don’t even have the time to visit the loo. Now let me not dwell into the details of my job partly because a) it is so boring that it would yawn an insomniac to sleep and b) nobody, not even Einstein’s father would understand the technical mumbo-jumbo involved. But if I were to honestly summarize my job, I can tell you that it is all about wearing crisp wrinkle-free formal wear and requires me to tap away at a few computer keys here, hoodwink a few gullible people there and convince everybody that I have the smartest dick in the corporate world. And mind you, all that takes some effort.

My work has brought me to Chennai this week, which is where I am put up and typing all this rubbish from. My work always brings me, the quintessential Bangalore boy, to Chennai- whether I like it or not. I have lost count of the number of times I’ve packed up for this city. My number of visits to this city so far, with no exaggeration, is probably equal to the number of ladder rungs it takes to climb up from the Earth to the Moon.

Anyway, the curtain raising event for the circus show happened earlier this week. There I was, in my cubicle, bum to chair and eyes into the computer screen, and into my 25th hour of work, when the boss picks on me and says
“Parikshith, you’ll have to visit our Chennai office tomorrow. The objective of your visit would be to teach our highly qualified software engineers there to count on the abacus.”
“Oh no not again man, why me?” I whine.

“You are the only bakra I could lay my hands on” he says with pride. “... and besides, you are important. This assignment is important”

Important, yeah right my ass. He makes it sound as if he is sending a Mossad agent on a Palestine mission.

“Come on Boss, why don’t you send someone else?”

“Sssshhh... stop being a little sissy, Parikshith, and go show your face in the Chennai office will ya? Your hotel, flights and cabs would have probably been booked by now... I don’t know, check with the Travel Department. Now off you go, shoo away from my chamber and let me have my nap in peace. Bye, have a great trip. Good luck.

Now don’t let all this fool you. For a random onlooker, travelling to another city on business class flights, having AC cabs ferry you back and forth and staying in star hotels – all on company’s expenses- may seem to be a glitzy affair. But not to me, not when this is the one hundred and umptieth time I am embarking on similar business trips to Chennai. It’s the same shit routine every time. A cab picks you up from home and drops you at the Bangalore airport. A flight crash-lands you in Chennai. Another cab receives you at the airport and drops you off at the Chennai office- where you spend the remainder of the day training astounded idiots on some shit technology or breaking your head in getting some defunct, gibberish bug-filled code to behave properly. After wasting yourself for the entire day, you check in to the same stupid hotel, order the same loftily priced room-service food and watch TV until you doze off to sleep. As I said, for a rookie engineer, all this ‘business experience’ may seem oh-so-glamorous and may have him all nippy and excited. (Why, he may even send a post card to his mother that says “Look Ma! I flew in an aeroplane once again, today”). But not me sir, I am a travel-hardened 26-year old and no spring chicken... and I’ve been enduring this magaj-maari for years now. So when the Boss sends me packing on my one hundred and umpty first trip to the same Godforsaken city, I am as enthusiastic as a dead dodo.

Realizing that my fate is cast in cement, I let out a long sigh and call up the Travel Department (T.D) of my office to get a status of my bookings. With all the interactions that we’ve had, the T.D guys are surely sick of my face by now. And vice-versa. Here’s the telephonic convo that ensued:

Travel Dept. Guy (T.D.): “Good evening, Parikshith. How may I assist you today?”

Me: “Array yaar, same flight, same place. Book the damn ticket for tomorrow”

T.D: “You mean you want an early morning flight to Chennai, sir?”

Me: “No. I want a late night flight to Timbuktu. Don’t ask stupid questions and give me a status of my bookings”

T.D: “We’ll have you on the 6 A.M flight tomorrow, sir. The cab will be at your place at 4.15 AM sharp for pickup. Have a nice journey and...”

Me: “Whoa whoa whoa! Hold on. Why the hell are you putting me on a 6 A.M flight? What happened to the regular 8 A.M flight?”

T.D: “That flight is completely booked, sir”

Me: “What happened to the 7 A.M flight? That one got sucked into the Bermuda Triangle eh?”

T.D: “I am sorry sir, but even that one’s completely booked”

Me: “Tell me something dude. Wasn’t my travel request been lying on your stone-age system since early this morning?”

T.D: “Yes, sir”

Me: “Then why couldn’t you book my tickets earlier, sir?”

T.D: “I am sorry sir, but we were so busy picking lint out of our belly buttons that we couldn’t find time to attend to your request earlier”

Me: “Excellent. So you put me on a 6 AM flight. You pick me up at 4.15 AM. And to think I have to wake up by 3.30 in the morning. Hey, why don’t you do me a favor and send some owls over to my place as well to wish me good morning?”

T.D: “Heh, heh, good one, sir”

Me: “This is ridiculous. I am not gonna be part of this stupid schedule. What would you do if I simply refused to go on that 6 A.M flight? What would you do then, huh?”

T.D: “We would then book you on the next available bullock-cart to Chennai, sir”

Me: “*Gulp!* Hey ok, ok, send me the tickets”

Trrrrrrrrrriiiingggg. My alarm clock goes off like a fire-alarm, breaking all the decibel barriers. The day of my travel finally dawns. 3:30 AM. I look out the window. Pitch black darkness greets me. Never in my life had I woken up at 3.30 A.M before. And to think I had to wake up now for something as stupid as my business trip. Okie-dokie, ho-hum another trip. What’s the big deal Johnny, it’s just another visit to Chennai after all, just like a visit to the super-market or visiting your Granny... all routine, all the same. Yeah right. Bloody hell. I toss my blanket aside and get up from my bed muttering curse after curse. I curse my job, curse my boss, curse the travel agent, curse his mother, curse the pile of clothes and bottles lying on the floor and stumble noisily into the bathroom. All my wee-hour commotion wakes up Sunil, my roommate. Now Sunil’s very first words when he wakes up in the morning is usually a devout “Hey Prabhu” and he then follows it up with a quick chant of a religious mantra. Today he wakes up and utters a classic “Abey betichod. Saale kya subah subah awaaz kar raha hai...”. But he notices my sleep-deprived foul mood and thankfully shuts up quickly. I zombie out of the bathroom, still more than half asleep, and get myself dressed. I collect my bags, mutter a ‘Gmmphhh’ (Goodbye) to Sunil and groggily trudge out of the room. Sunil sees me off at the door. He thumps my shoulders and says “Chal chal wake up dude, and have a safe journey... And don’t fall asleep on the air-hostess’ boobies. Chal bye...” and shoves me out of the room. “Gmmmpph...” is all that I can mutter back.

I approach my waiting cab, toss my bags in, crash into the back seat and mutter another “Gmmmpph” (Good morning) at the driver. In case you’ve been wondering why I’m being picked up so early, here is a piece of trivia for you – the new Bangalore airport is about 50kms away from the heart of the city... and even though its early morning, it still takes an hour to get your ass up there. Why is the Bangalore airport that far away? I don’t know. Ask the Government. Maybe the Govt wanted to keep their chaste little airplanes faaaaar away from prying evil eyes. So what did they do about it? They built one airport faaar away.

“Saaar... oh saaar, we reached ayer-port saaar” screams the cab driver until I jolt awake. True enough, I open my eyes and shield them from the bright entry lights of the departure terminal. Letting out a deep sigh, I enter the terminal, sleepwalk thru all the formalities and soon find myself inside the familiar confines of a flying coffin. “A very good morning and welcome aboard sir.” says a gorgeous air-hostess, welcoming me with her oft-practised plastic million watt smile. Now here’s a thing that you get a lot when you travel business class with private airlines – fake courtesy. Make no mistake, these private airlines, with their cute-as-a-button airhostesses; do offer pretty decent in-flight cabin services. I’m sure a lot of people will be overwhelmed by courtesy that they receive and will be bloating with a false sense of pride even after getting off the aircrafts. Well, good luck to such people. I am a simple, straight-from-the-heart desi guy and for me personally, there is no bigger a turn-off than fake smiles, artificial sweetness and put-on politeness. I cringe every time these airline people are so overbearingly nice to me in a fake, facaded way.
Anyway, I find my seat by the window, and quietly slip into it, in an attempt to catch my forty winks. “Good morning, how are you doing today? I hope you are comfortable sir, is there anything that I can get you?” inquires another sexy, stunner of an air-hostess; her genuinely beautiful face marred by a ridiculously phony smile. “No, thank you” I reply. This may sound howlingly ridiculous, but in moments like these, I really miss the Auntyiji air-hostesses of Indian Airlines/Air India and their no-pretence, no-nonsense, in-your-face ways of offering service. For example:

Aboard private airlines:
Me: “Excuse me, can I have some water?”
Gorgeous air-hostess: “Oh yes, surely, certainly, sir . I will get you a bottle of mineral water right away sir In the meanwhile would you like anything else sir? Do you also want some fresh orange-juice sir? No? Just the water, sir? Would you be able to drink the water yourself sir or do you want a tube to be inserted into your nostrils and the water to be poured down that, sir?”

Aboard Indian airlines/ Air India:
Me: “Excuse me, Aunty. Can I have some water?”
Auntyji air-hostess ( A.A) : “Aunty hogi teri maa”
Me: “Oops, sorry. Can I have a water bottle?”
A.A: “OK. Let me see”

Disagree if you want to, but I rest my case. But as an afterthought, I must say that we really need to appreciate the airline crew for the work that they do, especially when they work into such odd, ungodly hours. I mean, jeez, 5 AM in the morning- when an average sleepyhead like you and me can at max utter a grumpy ‘Gmmmph’, these men and hot women have to put on smiles on their faces and say nice English sentences to you. And when your early morning grooming procedure is limited to a pee, shave or a bath, these women actually have to spare time to apply layers and layers of make -up and look as fresh as a daisy. I’m sure it may not be easy for those poor souls.

Anyway, we taxi for take-off, the cute air-hostesses finish their customary little Bharatnatyam gig about the safety features. And then the Captain’s customary announcement spurts out from the loudspeakers. “Good morning, this is Captain Haddock and welcome aboard Kaput airlines...” the pilot announces. “...the weather outside in Bangalore is a pleasant 21 degree Celsius, although when you reach Chennai, it may be as pleasant as an oven. We will be flying at an altitude of 15,000 feet above sea level and darn, why does the proverb “The higher you fly, the harder you fall” keep hounding in my ears every time I say that. We hope you’ve paid attention to all the security features demonstrated to you by the crew. Just in case we crash into the sea, please be informed that the water is warm and the sharks are friendly. Thank you for flying with us, have a pleasant flight and we look forward to serve you again.” Errr... well, ok he may not have said all of that, but I was asleep by then and I am only guessing that’s what he may have announced.

Well, we finally land in Chennai (no wheel comes out of the landing gear, so I assume it was a safe touchdown) and I bid goodbyes to fake Colgate smiles. I know I am in Chennai- the hot winds blowing across the tarmac instantly make me feel as if I am inside an oven, indeed. I trudge to the arrival lounge, and search for the sign of cab that was supposed to pick me up. “If there is no cab sent to pick me, then I am heading back to Bangalore...” I silently promise myself. But I realize that it wouldn’t be necessary because soon enough I see a gentleman holding a large placard that says “Welcome to Chennai, Mr. Pratiksh Kumar”. I look at the placard and take a wild guess that it could possibly be for me. And as always, it turns out that I’m never wrong and I quickly follow the driver out of the lounge to my pickup cab.

So, that’s that folks. That’s where I am right now- cooped up in a hotel room in Chennai and that’s where I will be put up - for at least another fortnight or so. So until then, there is no guarantee that I can find any free time to visit the blogosphere (I’m sure you’ve had enough of me for now, if you read the whole post). I will even keep carrying work from the office to the hotel, like a doting mama Kangaroo. But I promise, I’ll try to smuggle in some free time here and there and intermittently visit the blogosphere. So before I say tata and birla for the time being, here is

My message to my dear male readers:
“Hi-five dudes!!! I will be away for sometime but we’ll catch up soon. Keep blogging, keep rocking and stay out of trouble you crazy bastards :-) . Chao! and catch’ ya later buddies”

And, my message to my dear female readers:
“Mmmuuuuuuuaaah, my sweethearts. I’ll be gone for a bit, OK? Awww, now don’t be sad, don’t pine for me. I will be back before you can say ‘Chocolate Cookie’”


Friday, July 3, 2009

The Conversation

“What kind of a girl do you want to marry, son?”

“Huh, come again? What?” asks the son, nearly choking on his beer, startled at the sudden salvo fired by his dad

Dad and son lie sprawled on the lawn, next to each other. A warm breeze, a desolate night sky, and a crate of beer cans give them company. An invisible choir of crickets chirps away in discord. An old tape-recorder plays out lilting Floyd.

“I said what kind of a girl are you looking to marry, son?”

The son closes his eyes and shakes his head. He casts one glance at his old man and another at the beer crate. “One, two, three, four, five...” he carefully counts.

“Just five cans and you are already out, Dad. I swear I won’t let you have more than two next time”

“I wrote my bloody Civil services examination with six beers inside me...” retorts the old man “...and I still topped my college. What does that suggest to you, son?”

“It only suggests that all your other classmates wrote the exam with seven beers inside them. Ha ha”

“Funny, huh? Some sense of humour you’ve got. I am perfectly sober. Now answer my question”

“What question, Dad?” asks the son, innocently.

“Your poker face doesn’t work with me. I’ve only asked you one question. I remember what I asked and I know you remember what I asked. Now give me a straight answer” remarks the Dad, taking another swig at his canister. He seems to be getting more and more sober with every passing sip of his poison.

“Oh you mean the question about you passing your exam with six beers and...”

“No, the one before that” grunts the Dad, cutting his son short.

Silence. The son lets out a big sigh that reeks of all the alcohol he’s had. He gives up. He knows there is no way out tonight. Daddy dearest has extended a vice like grip on him, which only threatens to tighten with every can of beer being emptied. He looks away from his Dad. More silence fills the air. The motley bunch of crickets continues to chirp away in disharmony. What’s with the crickets and their bad singing tonight? Have they been drinking out of the beer-cans too?

“Girl.... Ahh... any girl would do, Dad... I mean ... no specific expectation as such, just any girl would do for marriage... I mean, I don't know, you say...“ replies the son with slurring honesty.

“O ho just any girl will do, eh? Very good. You’ve made my search criteria narrower then. That rag-picker who comes to pick up the thrash everyday is also “just any girl”. You want me to ask for her horoscope eh?”

“Ha, must say your ripping sarcasm is improving day by day, Dad.”

“I know. With you for a son, I’m bound to go on and receive an A+ for sarcasm, someday”

“Well, I only have modest expectations for marriage, Dad. For a wife, I’d only want someone like Angelina Jolie… Heh heh”

“Anjali, who?”

“**Sigh*** Never mind Dad, can’t we talk about this when we are sober tomorrow?”

“No, you tell me right now”

Son falls silent. He looks down, shakes his head and shrugs his shoulders. He throws up his head and looks at the sky. He doesn’t know what to say, he doesn’t know how to say it. It is so difficult to talk about the intricacies of relationships...he is just a man after all.

He takes in a slow sip and pauses for the sublime liquid to enter his bloodstream and catalyse his thinking. He stares vacantly into oblivion and ever-so-slowly replies “You know what Dad, I don’t want my wife to be a wife. I want her to be my friend, my buddy for life. I want to marry a girl who is nice but not too saccharine sweet. Someone who listens to me, but not in an overtly subservient housewifish way. Someone who’s naughty and adventurous, but not promiscuous. Someone who talks but doesn’t go yappity-yap and naggity-nag 24 hours a day. Someone who looks like a dream and smiles like an angel. Someone who laughs with me, cries with me and stands by me through thick and thin. Someone who loves me for what I am, for who I am. Ah! Love... that’s what everything boils down to, doesn’t it Dad? Love -pure and unconditional... That is all I need. If I can find love in her, and if she can find love in me, then I swear by you Dad, that’s all I could wish for... I really wouldn’t care about the rest of her.”

The dad looks at his son with silent astonishment. Wow, who is this guy... he wonders to himself. Wow, is he my son? Where was he hiding all these years? He smiles to himself. My boy has got his heart and soul in the right place. Yes, he is my son, after all. I’ve got to know what I wanted to know. He nods to himself and takes a celebratory sip , to raise a toast to the moment.

The son realizes that words have tumbled out. “Darn! What have I done!” he curses to himself and buries his forehead in his hands. He looks up, snatches the beer from his Dad’s hands and empties it in one overflowing gulp. “Don’t believe in what I said, Dad. It wasn’t true. You don’t believe all that do you?” he mutters. He stands up on his feet, kicks a stone, stumbles over another, and flings the empty beer can far away. “Don’t believe in all that bullshit I just said. It was all rubbish, bollocks, balderdash. I don’t believe in all that love and shit. You know I don’t, right Dad? I only want the standard specifications in a girl. You know, the size 38 breasts, the size 36 bums, the hour-glass waist, the endless silken legs, the milky skin, the high performance capacity etc you know.... that’s all. That’s it. That should do it for me. ”

The dad shakes his head and smiles at his son. He’s amused by the son’s desperate attempt to mislead him. He reaches out, grabs the son by his trousers and pulls him down to the lawn. “Of course I believe you, son” he replies with a wink. “In fact, I was wondering why that standard specification part didn’t come out of you earlier”

“Ha ha ha ha”. The son breaks into laughter. He knows that his old man is lying. But he still can’t help laughing.

“And you know what, young man... I am sure all your ex-relationships went kaput because you ran after your girlfriends with a laminated copy of the ‘standard specifications document’ hung around your neck! . Now do me a favor and pull out another beer”

“Aw, come on...” is all the son can sheepishly mutter as he pulls out a tin for himself and tosses another at his Dad.

Embarrassment. Smiles. Laughs. Guffaws. Clink of metal. Cheers!!!. Swig. Pause. Ponder. Despair. Sorrow. The son’s emotional clock changes position with every ticking second.

“I am a loser, ain’t I, Dad?” he asks.

“Oh yes of course you are, son!!!!”

“Ha ha ha ha ha”. The son erupts in more laughter. “Oh come on, man...!” he says “... couldn’t you at least say a few comforting Dad-words like ‘It’s alright son’ or ‘No, you aren’t a loser, you are a champion, son’ or something like that? That was supposed to be my cue for you. Ha ha ha... Dad you are too much. Ha ha ha.”

“What, you expect me to lie through my beer?” says the Dad. “Don’t worry I’ll say all those things when I am sober tomorrow..” he remarks, throwing a wink at his son. And I’m gonna get your horoscope out, first thing, when I am sober in the morning.

The two men continue to sip away silently. The sky goes on to acquire a serene midnight blue. The breeze gets stronger and the crickets get merrier.

“Tell me something Dad, why do you want me to marry me off so soon? . I have got so many things to achieve, so much to do. I have seen only half the colours of rainbow in my life so far...”

“You are 26 years old, you have a great job and you are leading an independent, well settled life. What more do you want? And what rainbow are you talking about. By the time you are done seeing the entire rainbow, you’ll be 80 years old”

“Marriage will snatch all my freedom and free will away. Do you think I can lead my care-a-hoot life after I get married? I will always be answerable to the Big Boss. And do you think I’ll get to come over here on Saturdays like this and have unlimited beers with you after I get married?”

“We can always have our beers, son and...”

“Yeah right...can always have our beer” replies the son, cutting his Dad short in mid-sentence “... Forget the beers, you know, after marriage I’d probably be spending Saturdays shopping with my wife in the ground floor of Big Bazaar , buying scrubs for the wash basin, curtains for the windows and toilet-cleaners for the commode. Don’t you think so?”

The dad pauses, ponders, scratches his chin and slowly replies “But toilet-cleaners are important, son. What’s the harm in shopping for that?”

The son throws his arms up. “Yeah, great, Dad. I knew I could always count on your advice. I’ll mix some of that liquid in your beer next time, you should be able to offer even better advice”

Both men break into guffaws.

“Think about it, son. Isn’t your life incomplete without marriage?”

“Right. And I get married and my life will be finished”

“***Sigh*** why is it so bloody difficult to reason with you?”

The son thumps his old man on the shoulders “Chip of the ol’ block Dad, chip of the ol’ block. It’s your genes that run in me”

The men shake their heads and smilingly look away from each other in opposite directions.

“Come to think of it, I know why you are in such a hurry to marry me off” says the son, sipping the last drops from his can.

“Oh really? Would you mind telling me too?” replies the Dad, throwing a quizzical glance at his son.

“It’s the babies. You just can’t wait to be a Grandpa and play toy-trains with your grandkid”

The dad smiles in realization. “Well, that is also true. Playing with my grandkid. Wow, now wouldn’t that be wonderful? You know, now I really think I should get your horoscope out in circulation, first thing tomorrow morning”

“Damn you and damn the bloody horoscope” sneers the son.

“Come on son, just think how wonderful it is going to be after the years. You, me and my grandson. I’m sure my he’ll grow up to be a fine man too. We’ll sit here on this very lawn and have beer together – all three of us. I sure hope I’ll be around till then...”

“Ha ha ha... you are right. But why grandson? I can have a daughter too right? But anyway, even that will be fun. All of us - Granddaughter, father and grandfather having beer together...” replies the son.

“Hey... you let my grand-daughter drink, I will kill you” retorts the old man.

“But...” objects the son.

“I swear young man, if you let our sweet little girl touch even a drop of alcohol, I swear I will kill you” fires the old-man.

“But what’s wrong in her having an occasional beer and...”

“Nothing doing” the old man continues his drunken tirade. He gulps his beer and slams the canister hard on the ground and stands up on his feet. “Your little girl will be such a darling angel. I am warning you son, if you dare let our angel drink, I swear I’ll bash your head up.”

“Ok fine calm down, calm down, Dad. Fine. I will not let her drink” says the son, standing up to his feet and getting to his stumbling Dad’s aid.

“I don’t believe you, liar” says the Dad, looking at his son suspiciously.

“Don’t worry Dad. Now just calm down will ya. Fine I’ll not let her drink. Even if she drinks, I’ll make sure she will not have too much.”

“See, you are lying already”

Silence engulfs the night. Even the crickets stop chirping, probably intimidated by two inebriated men loudly quarrelling over their nonexistent daughter/grand-daughter’s drinking habits.

“Now come on Dad, it’s been a long night. Let’s find ourselves something to eat. Now come on in” says the inebriated son to his inebriated father. The two men help each other from their lawns and into their house.

“Yeah, let’s go in and eat. I am hungry too. But don’t forget son, tomorrow morning, when I am sober, I’ll be getting your horoscope into the nearest marriage bureau.” says the Dad.

“We shall see about it tomorrow, Dad. I will remind you about it.”

“Now don’t you trick me son. I may be fully drunk alright, but I am still completely in my senses.”

“Yes, absolutely, I know that Dad, don’t I?”

“That’s enough. Let’s go inside”

Dad and son walk together, arms supporting each others’ shoulders and help each other stumble into the house, leaving the night sky, the crickets, the beers and their conversation behind...