Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Conjunctive Saga



The two words were added rather unwelcomingly to my vocabulary today. It took some significant wrestling with the pages of dictionary to even get the spellings right. Ladies and Gentlemen, the dreaded conjunctivitis virus/bacteria (/protozoa/amoeba/bunked zoology classes in college to know more) - which had been doing a recce of the streets of Bangalore, has consumed its first high-profile victim... yours truly, the author of Nonsense Aplenty.

Conjunctivitis (red eye) is the inflammation of the conjunctiva ( a transparent lubricating mucous membrane that covers the eyeball and the under surface of the eyelid ) and commonly characterized by the redness of the eye. Indications and symptoms include frequent itching, irritation, and the ability to suddenly look like a drunk Bollywood movie villain from the 1980's - grotesque appearance with angry red eyes and everything. Actually, it occurred all too suddenly. I was riding away on the bike, with cool wind in my receding hair, and whoosh, I felt something in the eye. I guess the virus was waiting right up there in the atmosphere, with its trap laid out bare. And I must've got suckered straight into it. I don't know why the virus chose me, when it had millions of other jerks at its mercy. Maybe the bloody thing watched too many Hindi movies, heard too many mushy romantic songs and so in true Bollywood style, fell instantly in love with my eyes. A visit to the ophthalmologist confirmed the infection. So here I am, ladies and gentlemen, confined to my room like a caged porcupine, and forced to be bedridden like a drugged undertrial.

Anyway, I then interacted with/rang up few of my dear ones, to break the news of my recently acquired condition. Not surprisingly, it elicited a mixed bag of response, some of which I have sampled below. Fasten your seat belts, take an anti-histamine and read on:

Reaction #1 : Parents @ hometown:
"Conjunctivitis?!!! What? How? Which? When? Where? Why? . Did you show yourself to a doctor? What did the doctor say? What did the nurse say? What did the chemist say? What did the lab attendant say? What did the lift operator say? How are you feeling now? Are you better? Worse? Does it hurt? It is going to last for 3-4 days isn't it? Have u stared taking medicines? Eye drops? Which eye drops? Now who asked you to go out of your room and contract the virus? Couldn't you stay put in room? Take rest now. Keep washing your hands. Don't touch your eye. Don't you get out of your bed, young man. Did you have your food? Now go and sleep. Nothing doing. No office-woffice. And don't forget the medicines, will ya? "

Reaction#2 : The old landlady here in B'lore
"Oooooh... you coochie-coochie , sweetie-sweetie thing... Look at yourself , my dear.. You go to your room and take rest OK? I will send some badam milk upstairs. And by the way, you are yet to pay last month's rent and electricity bill... When the hell are you going to... But Ok ok ok... You don't strain yourself. I will send some snacks too.."

Reaction#3 : Roommates
"Oh shit... Oh fuck... Conjunctivitis? It is contagious right? Will we get it too? Will we get it now? Have we already got it? Is the virus on its way? OK, spray disinfectant, splash phenol... Hey you go take bath with pesticide... Keep your clothes and towels away. Would you remove your epidermal layer and store it away some place? And isn't that your underwear hanging on the door knob? Remove it from there. OK, buddy now relax... don't worry... lie down on the bed..Where are your eye drops? Here now, we'll apply it for you. Don't go outside. We'll get you dinner, what would you like? Close your eyes and be still. "

Reaction#4: Friends(Male)
"Conjunctivitis? Since when? Oh ok... No tension macha... Clean your eyes, wear goggles, take medicines. 3-4 days, that's all. Relax. Hey wanna join us for a movie over the weekend? Oops , sorry we forgot. But OK, its some rubbish mystery movie anyway...heard its not good, so you will not miss it. And we'll let you know what the climax was all about later. You take rest. Chal bye. "

Reaction# 5: Friends(Female)
"You got conjunctivitis? Reallyyyyy? No kidding haaan? Seriously? Since when? Oh dear, sooo sorry. Does it hurt? Has your eye become really very red? Did you show yourself to the doctor? How are you feeling now? Its OK... If you feel like sharing anything you can let us know. See for conjunctivitis naaaa... first you should clean your hands regularly. Use Dettol soap to wash your hands. And then naa you should wipe your hands with a soft towel. Don't keep touching your eyes. Take Ketogate eye drops, 4 times daily, hey... are you paying attention to me? What are you thinking about? Concentrate when I talk. You never listen. OK, then take your eye drops without fail, wear shades, don't try to be a stud or something. Just take rest in your room. Understand? Give a call if you feel lonely or want to talk about anything. Hey you know that girl Geeta from college? I met her yesterday.. Oh my God, she has put on so much weight... I don't know, and she was wearing this dress... such a yuckie color, and some tacky footwear... Eeshh.. God, how did she become so fat and you know what..... "

Reaction #6: Priest from the temple across the road
"What happened Son ? Red eye? Hey Ram ram ram ram. I think you should consider stepping into the temple at least once in a millennium ,Son...Ram ram ram ram. Anyway will offer special prayers for you in the evening. God bless you. Ram ram ram ram. "
(Note: The priest then offered me a bag of rock candy, flowers and smeared some vermilion on my forehead... none of which, to the best of my knowledge, are world-renowned cures for conjunctivitis. )

Reaction #7: My manager
" You want three days leave? Conjunctivitis? Hmmm... Can you work with one eye closed? You can't? How about working with both eyes closed? No no no.. I didn't mean you should fall asleep in your cubicle. Hmmm... OK... Three days then... Please ensure due diligence and see it to it that your productivity and deliverables are unaffected. Please ensure that you delegate your work queue as per existing business contingency plans.. Are you done unit testing all your modules? By the way who is this again? Parikshith?.... Parikshith who? You are in my team? Did you say we've met before? Let me think... Oh are you the fair, plump guy who always plays table tennis? The same guy who crashed that network server last week? OK now I remember you. OK, I'll see you after three days then. Good luck. I hope you will miss being part of this wonderfully productive workplace"

Reaction # 8: Colleagues/Teammates @ work
"Conjunctivitis? Ha ha ha... Serves you right , you bugger.. Looks like you had overworked your eyes, ogling at female breasts all day.... ha ha ha... particularly the babes from H.R. Ha ha ha ha... You've got three days leave? Cool, you lucky con! Enjoy. Nopes, not possible to take up your work... I cant understand your rubbish code one bit, dude... What, you think I am Albert Einstein's love child? No way, you take rest, enjoy your vacation and come back. We'll think about your code later. Take care of yourself. Will let you know if you are issued a pink slip.

Reaction#9: Friendly neighbourhood dog:
"Bow bow? Bow wow wow? Bow bow wow bow wow bow bow. Woof Woof"

Reaction #10: Best buddies
"Conjunctivitis? Ho ho ho ho ho... Hey d'ya hear that? The ass is down with conjunctivitis... Ha ha ha... So what do you expect us to do next? Collect sandalwood for your funeral pyre? Ha ha ha ha ha ha... Anyways fuck everything, and come over to our place. We'll make dinner for you too... and then we all can sit down and watch some porn together. You will be alright. Hell with conjunctivitis being contagious. We don't give a damn. Now are you coming here by yourself or do you want us to pick you up?"
Reactions, as you just witnessed ladies and gentlemen, have been coming thick and fast. I can say that I have well and truly been overwhelmed. But all I can do is to remain confined in my room, flutter eyelashes and shed crocodile tears. I hope to get better soon, so that I can get to my feet, and perform my self-imposed duty of writing blogs that aim to radically change the face of the world. Through 'Nonsense Aplenty', I know that I know I am on the right path:-)

With abundant love and conjunctive winks ;-)


Satyajit said...

You wont even spare conjunctivitis from your humor will you? Another thoroughly entertaining post. :-) And get well soon... wash your eyes... etc.. ha ha ha...

gayathri-vishwanathan said...

ohhh i am writing this late...but i liked the female colleague's reaction. tc of your eyes and see to it that the viruses don't fall in love with you sorry your eyes at first sight.

AS said...


ur blog is very interesting:)
I loved this post, quite a creative idea ...heheheh and I liked the reaction of ur female friends and neighborhood doggy .... wow wow!! it cares a lot for u ;D

kochuthresiamma p .j said...

you write so well! sidesplitting nstyle!
posted a comment on your valentine piece which is really reallt superb.a delightful piece that was.
i repeat the question that got deleted from the valentine post: Whats a person who can write like you doing in software?

Parikshith Kumar said...

Dear Kochuthresiamma

Thank you !!!

What am I doing in the software industry? Well like all the software engineers, I drink coffee, I play table tennis, I ogle at pretty girls, and in between all that I write code which sometimes threaten to wipe half of the computers off the globe!!! :-)

Writing nonsense is my hobby. Writing nonsense software is my profession. :-) Thank you for your visit and for your comment ( I saw the one on the Valentine post too, thank you!)

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

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