Friday, September 30, 2005

Dream Neighbour

I could blog about how I actually dreamt of Mallika Sherawat playing the role of Mother Teresa in her next movie, which is a soul disturbing thing to even dream of. I could blog about how I found ‘Aashiq banaya aapne’ , which could well have had the audience sending asking the director – ‘Yeh kya banaya aapne ?’.I could blog about how I have been listening to the song ‘Humsafar’ by Silk Route so many times in a day which must be making my winamp beg for a bullet by now.

But I did not blog over the last week.

I wish I could have said “You see , managing three highly violent and Mithun “hoye saala” Chakraborty influenced kids is just so difficult and time consuming , it just does not allow me to blog”. But due to lack of appropriate people and opportunity , I have no kids.So I just have to blame Robin for my failure to blog over the last week.

Remember Robin ? The “gareebo ka maseeha” outlaw.His merry band. The Sherwood forest.The sheriff of Nottingham.The ballads.The pretty Queen Elanor.Ok , now do not yell “mujhe sab yaad aa gaya !”.Because I am not talking about Robin Hood .

Instead I am talking about a certain Robin Sharma , who wrote a certain “The monk who sold his Ferrari” , which is about a certain monk selling a certain Ferrari .He also wrote another book “Who will die when you cry?”..err…its “Who will cry when you die ?” I picked up this book and spent the last week reading it and thinking over it.Now , I am not the intellectual and liberated youth who sports a little goatee , wears ‘kurtas’ over faded jeans , has ideas on poverty elimination and capital punishment and can spend light years arguing social topics over coffee with more people of his kind.I hardly read anything which is not a comic strip.It was just that the last time I was at the airport waiting for the flight to home , a 'no-lack' of free time and a lack of headphones, combined to create acute boredom for me , almost a mild form of depression infact.So I walked into a book store at the airport , eyed the glossy health magazines with young and slim ladies smiling on their covers , contemplated if those were silicon implants , and then bought the “Who will cry when you die” thing , primarily because of its low cost.

So a major part of the last week was spent reading it , writing things for the various B school contests happening around , watching movies , listening to music and attending classes for a change.Now , this book , in its chapter 17 , suggests the reader to make a little list of people one wish would live next door to him/her.Robin jee says , that this would help one get clearer about the attributes he / she likes and then be aware of the need to inculcate them within oneself.Now , I found this interesting.To think of people I would want to stay in my neighbourhood.Let me try.

1. Aishwarya Rai

My university results are out.I flunk in three subjects.There were three subjects in all.Dad shouts at me.Mom looks away.Slamming doors.I feel suffocated and angry and walk out into the street. And just then , aishwarya jogs past in a pink track suit . She slows as she passes me , flashes a smile and cheerfully says “ Hi !”.I if I do manage to say anything , I would just mouth “Aishwarya jee , I just flunked my exams ,all of them , that too by a huge margin. But trust me , I never felt better than I feel right now.”

2. Jim Carrey

I am out of sugar .Wife is too lazy to move her little finger . I go over to Jim’s door to borrow some sugar. He invites me in and … before you think we go into his bedroom , stop thinking. He gives me the sugar and asks me to stay for a quick coffee .And over coffee , even if he does ten percent of something like his ‘Dumb and Dumber” act , I would be laughing my diaphragm out.I really want to see this guy living around me. He is the funniest guy I have seen.And I would pray we run out of sugar.

3. Mike Tyson

I understand this imposes a considerable threat to my “izzat” and the “izzat” of the colony’s “bahu and betiyan”. But this guy is entirely for security purposes.With a “tyson’s” house in the locality , any thief needs to be suicidal to even think of doing his business in our colony.And I may just get to be friendly with Tyson , with pleasing advantages. Boss shouts at me. Tyson beats boss. “Sabjiwallah” charges me higher for tomatoes.Tyson beats “sabjiwallah”.Wife shouts at me.Well , that’s normal.

Ps – My original choice for the brawny neigbour was Salmaan Khan , but with his kind of driving skills and feelings for Aishwarya , he had to be disqualified.

4.Sri Sri Ravi Shanker.(Is there one more 'sri' ?)

Now this guy is important.Whenever I fail in life , spirituality comes in handy. I make fifty thousand bucks in stocks and I go to posh hotel and land up in a sauna bath and I feel fine.I lose fifty thousand bucks in stocks and I go to guru jee’s house and he says ‘ money is an illusion’ and I feel fine.

5. Beep
No , the name is not an expletive.But it is of one of the bloggers , whom I find kind of interesting .I do not know if I would want a permenant residence of this character in my neighbourhood , but at least a rented accommodation is desired .

The list would run longer than Shilpa Shetty’s legs , if I keep going on.So this is it for now. Between , who is your dream neighbour ( s ) ?

Friday, September 23, 2005

A little bit of ourselves

Ok.This is not a post.I mean , it is not a dinosuar either , but it is not a "regular" post.This is more like a link to a couple of other posts.
Last night , everything was fine , the phone lines were clear , water was coming out of the taps , the internet was working , the flushes in the hostel washroom were broken as expected , the food in the mess was a mess as it is everyday , and I was feeling just as lazy as I always do.
Then my dad called and we had nice little telephonic quarrel over my continued failure to score anything over a "C" in my subjects.I said I do not care.My dad threatened to cut off my finances.I said I do care , will study hard and I am sorry.But my dad can not stand my lazy ways any more.My dad has cut off my finances.He has blocked my ATM card.He sent three well fed men to my hostel and they took away my little piggy bank.One of them took away my watch , cellphone and comics collection too.I am sure dad did not ask him to do that.I will complain about him to dad.
Later that night , I stole a pack of Apple Juice from the departmental store , as I could not buy it without money, and then went out for a walk.I moved around the campus , and then settled down besides the lake.The moon hung in the sky , a couple of stray dogs barked somewhere nearby , and I sipped the apple juice and pondered how to manage without dad's financial favors.
It was like dad was asking - "Aaj mere paas ghar hai , paisa hai , degree hai , bank accounts hai , car hai , cellphone hai , TV hai , vaccum cleaner hai .Tere paas kya hai ? "
And then this idea hit me.And I sucked the last drops of the apple juice , tossed the pack aside and growled - "dad , mere paas mera blog hai !".
So I have started this "blog advertising service" where people pay me and I post links to their blogs.Sayesha and sunshine paid me first.But sunshine , I wont accept cheques from the next time.It better be cash.
Ok.I have this problem.I cant say a thing straight.But now I will.
This blogging thing is no longer only about expressing myself .It is about admiring how different and varied people are.And yet in this diversity , there is something within each of us which strikes a chord with someone else.I go about reading blogs and finding pieces of my life in other's lives.Its like , most of us are not very different.At a very basic level , we are all similar.I found my own childhood , though probably a lot more violent and mischevious than hers , in sayesha's post.And Sunshine's post brought back the same emotions I felt when "someone" died an untimely death.
Blogging for me , is not about writing in impeccable english or gaining 40 comments to a post now.I anyways never achieve either of these.But for me , blogging is about finding a little bit of ourselves in each other.
I think I should regularly share links to nice posts from now on.There are many beautiful writings around.I just found two.I liked these two posts , and to go on without mentioning them seemed very selfish to me.
And nah , they did not pay me anything.Dad is ok.ATM cards are working.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

I want a baby !

( translation - If I am not cute , you are Gulshan Grover)

For 95 minutes , a two year old pink bundle with hair as scarce as Bruce Willis' , teeth as few as my granddad's , and a brain as immature as mine ,kept saying the line above ,and me , a 23 year old management student , with all my sinew and rugged looks , kept chuckling like mickey mouse was tickling me on my bottoms.Watching "Baby's Day Out" just brought out the "mamta ka saagar" part of my personality again.
I really love babies.Every Homo sapien does.If you do not love babies , ding dong ! Abhinav Travel Services got a one way ticket to Pluto for you , at very reasonable rates now ! Please contact us , grab the ticket and go off to pluto to never come back , because someone who doesnt love babies doesnt deserve to be on earth.ding dong !.
You need to have a heart made out of melted iron pipes , to not love a little baby.The best thing about little babies is that everything is so little.Little fingers , little lips , little eyes , little toes , little feet , little ears.And they are not really thinking ahead.I really think that babysitters have the most pleasing job , right up there with that of Emraan Hashmi.In both cases , you get paid to play with semi naked and soft people.
My dad must have been born with a camera around his neck and a couple of kodak reels stuffed in his diapers.And the first words he said must have been "Say Cheese!".He just loved clicking pictures of us when me and my sister were babies.Back at home , we have photo albums which would outweight the prime customer of your local weight reduction clinic.So I still get out one of those albums and spend hours poring over those baby photographs and wondering what comet hit this little cute cuddly baby in the picture to grow up into something like me.And once when my family was at the Delhi zoo , this seemingly european couple came upto mom and asked to get a picture of a three year old me with their white kid , who was around the same age at that time.My sister says they did that to get a perfect color contrast in the snap.To highlight the 'kaala , bhookha ,nanga" aspect of India.I still have that photograph in a little album.Have you ever seen a dove and a crow side by side ? If you want to , see that photograph.And you need to be brain damaged to ask which one is the crow out of me and the european kid.
But now that I have grown up , its like a "girly" thing to talk about babies.For the sake of protecting my claims to any kind of masculanity , I generally avoid talk about babies.Because when I dont avoid it , something like this follows :
Me ( excited voice ): Hey I love little babies , they are so cute !
Rahul ( 5'10" , unshaved , deep voice ) - Dude , you need to drink some buckets of testosterone soon.
Aman ( 5 ' 7" , bulging biceps , deepest voice ) - Abhinav , you remind me of my grandmother .
Vikram ( 6' 1" , long hair , deeper voice ) - I think you love wearing pink frocks and read "cyndrilla" and sing "ring-a-ring-a-roses" too ?
Me ( low , subdued voice ) : I ..just like babies yaar..I am normal.
I know you would smirk and think - "He has just wiggled the little noses and tickled the little toes of babies belonging to aunts.Wait till some baby shits on his favorite blue courdroy trousers and pisses on his starched white shirt and wails like a puppy just when he has to watch a soccer game on the television".But with all due respect to babies of the world ,I claim that I can calm down any baby and make it smile before you can spell 'Hi'.And I dont even need cartoon network or stuffed toys for that. Handsome ( with just a little plastic surgery to do ) , educated , baby calming capability , intelligent ( serious allegations against this one )..what more can anyone desire in a man ?
And there are only two things that make me even think of marriage.First ,a rich father-in-law.Second , the thought of watching a little baby grow up.
Last month , I was vehemantly arguing with mom and claiming that marriages got popular because gas chambers went out of fashion.
Me ( to ma ) - Marriage !! A monkey has to come out of my ear before I even think of marriage.
* I walk upto the television , watch "amazing baby videos" on discovery , get all senti senti over little babies and hence marriage and walk back to mom.*
Me ( to ma ) - Ma , have you seen a big brown monkey with a pink face and a fuzzy tail around this place ? Let me know if you spot it.It ran off right after It came out of my ear."

Friday, September 16, 2005

Maar Daala

D E A T H.
Bad word , hai na ? Ma says its a bad word.Papa says dont say it.Its a bad word.Death , nah , dont talk about it , chup paagal.Even in the movies , the heroine places her finger on the hero's lips before he can complete the sentence and whispers "Kabhi marne kee baat matt karna.Aisa nahee kehte".
But, its coming yaar.Death.It will happen.To me.To you.Acchha yaar , now stop yelling "manhoos" , chup chaap baat sun.What if I were to die after half an hour.I shall never be able to feel ma's palm on my forehead again.I shall never hear my sister call me a gadha again.I shall never be able to tell dad that even though I always try to act smart , he is the greatest guy I have ever known.I shall never be able to tell the departmental store guy that I stole 3 eggs from his shop yesterday.Ok , dont dial 100 , the eggs wala part is not true.How could you imagine that yaar , me and stealing eggs ? I am a vegetarian.I steal carrots and dhania.
But seriously , death scares me.It scares me to be away from my loved ones.It scares me to die without doing all the things I want to do.It scares me that I may die.But death is real.And I may die after a year.I may die tomorrow after attending the class , If I do attend one.I may die before I complete this post.( But now that I have published it , I did not die before completing it,right ? Soch ke dekh ).
Now you may smirk and say "arre yaar , aise thode hee koee mar jaata hai".But I have seen lives shattering in the blink of an eye.A second's delay in hitting the brakes , a leaking gas cylinder , a desperate and armed domestic help in enough to change your life in a radical way , before you can say "maar daala".And not like Madhuri said it in Devdaas.
But the point is not to be scared of dying.
The point is to be scared of dying without really living.
I see around me.I see people I care for.Sometimes I see them sad .I see them clinging to bad memories , things which they cannot change , things which still hurt them , things which make tears flow down their cheeks.I know they are hurt and have reasons to feel sad.But life is not forever.Life is nothing but a limited number of moments gifted to us by god.And each moment is slipping by.Right now , a moment just passed by me , and took me closer to death , leaving me with lesser time to smile ,to crack some poor joke , to see my ma laugh , to see a friend find the happiness she deserves , to be a good person ,to make someone smile , to live.And the very thought of letting such a precious moment drown in a tear leaves me restless.Why do we people hurt each other , when this life may not be long enough to love each other ?
Maybe you need to know that you may never get a chance to be the good man you could have been.Maybe you need to know that the moment you have been waiting for to tell her how much you love her may never arrive.Maybe you need to know that you may never have the time to wipe off the tears you are causing today.Maybe you need to know that death is a surprisingly unexpected reality.Maybe you need to start living the life you should.
I know I know , I am saying nothing new.But life and the things it does to people and the things people do to it continue to amuse me.In short , ek baat bolta hun , all
of us should respect and enjoy the ride , because hamari life kee taxi mein petrol kabhi bhi khatm ho sakta hain. Sorry , ho sakta hai its diesel in your life kee taxi.And marne ke baad , you cant even fight with the cab driver.So smile , khush raho , muskurao , jeeyo ,and make people smile , kyunki ..kal ho na ho.Wait a minute ..kal ho na ho..yaar ye phrase kuch suna hua nahee lagta ?

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Dawood's mobile number ? Landline ?

"All this hair.They cover your ears.They trap dust and pollens.They hold sweat.They keep the air from getting to the scalp.All this can cause a lot of medical complications leading to anything from amputation of a couple of ears , to your scalp going flourescent yellow and glowing in the dark."

And when all this is said in a cold , technical , documentary-sque voice , and that too by a guy who has punched injections in your bottom when you were a kid and still controls the ATM cards you use merrily to buy anything from chewing gum to rum , you have no choice but to appreciate how important a haircut is.So when dad "asked" me to get a haircut , I got a haircut.The barber was gut wrenchingly intersted in the india-zimbabwe match on the television as he swiped scissors around my head.And the fact that the Indians were batting like a bunch of grandmothers wasnt helping his mood.I was particularly scared when he mouthed " Saalo kee gardan kaat deni chahiye" and picked up the razor to work on me.
It is such close shaves with death which help one appreciate how precious life is.When it ended , I ran back to home and hugged my mom.
The week at home was chatting with ma while I sat on the kitchen floor ,telling dad I do have future plans but I do not know what they are , playing ludo and carrom with sister , hot delhi , airconditioned rooms , ESPN ,bread rolls , and a lot more of normal homely stuff.But if I put in all the experiences of the week at home in a Philips juicer cum mixer and mix them hard for 15 minutes , what will come out is a slip with this written on it - "munnu beta , what are your wedding plans ? ".( Munnu beta , shaaadeee wadeeee ka kya socha hai ?)
To be honest , my only responsibility till now has been to study , wash the car on sundays , and get two polypacks of double toned milk from the mother dairy in the mornings.And since I am at the hostel now ,even the last two have gone missing.But "life mein twist" may just come soon enough.
My MBA ends next march , which effectively is the end of my formal education.And I will start working.I mean , some company will think I am capable enough of doing something for which they are willing to pay me.The thought in itself is dripping with responsibility.But even though I have a washed car and a couple of milk polypacks as my past experience , I think I will manage as long as I try to enjoy my work.So work is not what bugs me.
If responsibility is bollywood , marriage is the Amitabh Bacchan of responsibilities.If responsibilty is spin bowling , marriage is the Shane Warne of responsibilities.If responsilbity is terrorism , marriage is the Osama Bin Laden of responsibilities.
To my underdeveloped brain, marriage is a state of the art , cutting edge , ultimate responsibility.
And even though I am just almost 24, the M word was mouthed around 178 times by my parents during my week at home.As per reliable sources , a couple of aunts have been bringing in some wedding proposals for me.I read in the newspaper about Dawood being a diploma holder in kidnappings.I searched "how to contact Dawood Ibrahim for getting a few aunts kidnapped" on google.Not much information so far.
If and when I do marry , its like a responsibility of keeping someone happy for life.If some girl leaves her home , parents , family , neighbours , pet dogs and boyfriends to marry me and come to my home , it automatically becomes my responsibility to keep her happy.I have seen hindi movies.I have seen that the elders leave the boy and the girl "alone" for some time so that "wo ek doosre ko jaaan le , pehchaaan le , samajh le".I will try my best to warn her about how stupid I can be , and I will tell her about neha too.But asking me to understand a girl in such a short time makes giving a bath to a crocodile look easy , including soaping its back.And like I do not expect to know her completely , she wont know me.
And at a later stage , she may find that I am not serious even at her aunt's condolence meeting , that I like to watch govinda movies , and insist that she watches it too , that I hate attending her dad's brother's daughter's classmate's engagement , , that I look at the ceiling fan when her uncle asks me about my views on the future of Indian Automobile Industry , that I watch Tom and Jerry with my kids when I should be making them study , that I am perfectly incapable of holding any intellectually stimulating discussions with her , and all this may leave her feeling cheated for life.
And even if I ever need someone , I need someone who thinks its perfectly human to make funny faces at the waiter at an upmarket restruant.Someone who appreciates my hooting and whistling at a movie at a multiplex , and may even like to send out a shrill whistle herself.Someone who thinks bliss is a silly little evening with me and a few chirpy kids.Someone who is not irritated if I narrate poor sardaar jokes to her 35 times in a day.Someone who doesnt run away if I want to show her the latest dance moves I picked up from the last hindi flick I watched.Someone who doesnt act like some comet hit our home when our son flunks maths for consecutive years.
In short , I need a girl as stupid and dumb as me , and likes stupid and dumb people.
And considering how incompletely a boy knows a girl when the marriage happens, I do not want to go ahead with a responsibility I am not sure I can fulfill.I do not want some girl to marry me and then discover she needed someome more civilised and refined and serious.I do not want the girl to feel that she is the unluckiest wife on this planet , along with Rabri Devi maybe .If you think Rabri Devi is not so unlucky , try managing something like Bihar all day and going home to nine kids and a hairy eared ,"eager for a tenth" laloo .So I really need google to throw up something useful.And if you do manage to get Dawood's contact number , mail me.You can save a girl's life.