Saturday, October 6, 2007

The blue escape

It was the dark ages of cultural morality. The land of Kamasutra had suddenly become as conducive to kinky stuff as the Taliban had to music. It was, as they say time to take things in your “own hands”! Young men rearing at the leash for the weekly dose of wet saris, were deprived by some psycho at DD. Yours truly was at that time in the tenth standard and really feeling let down.

But then, where there is a demand, there is a supply. Video shops had mushroomed right across the state during this time period due to DD going slow on the wet stuff and Star and Sun finding their very airwaves censored. The shops had the stuff alright. But the only problem was the inherent risk attached with taking “nice” movies from them. What if the shop owner was a psycho and told my parents? Taking the risk and living in peace would not go hand in hand...:(

Fortunately for me, I had one advantage….. Actually I had many
1) I lived near my school.
2) My friends were equally desperate to be immoral.
3) Both my parents were working
4) I had a VCR.
5) My brother who had suddenly become all studious used to come late after all the combined studies at his friend’s place.

It was no wonder then that some of my more enterprising buddies suggested to me that they will take the risk of renting the tapes, while I should just provide them with the infrastructure required.

Anwar may have been really small in stature, but he was waaaay beyond us in “maturity”. Having born with a keen business mind, he decided to run the operations. He would run the risk of taking the tapes and supplying them. The risk was two fold, he had to take them and bring them to school where any of those teacher-loving jackasses could act traitor. The viewers, who ran the minimal risks, would be the payees for the tape. Except for me of course, since I ran some significant risks along with Anwar.

Since my mother came back at 5:45, we would organize a show at my place between 4 and 5:30. In a very short time the whole operation became a grand success. Each day, I had dozens of guys begging me to be invited. But invitations were strictly for my closest buddies. Shiraz, Anoop, Zachariah etc. Things were going on smoothly and if I had the least bit of business sense in me, I could have actually made a profit on it too! But like always, I (yeah you guessed it!) screwed it up…:(

It was one of those evenings when attendance was higher than normal. In fact I am sure that there were more people at my house than there was in the class. The tape was running, guys watching it with their eyes bulging, tongue hanging and a lot more happening when the calling bell rings. An electric shock went right through my spine. It was just 5:20, so why was my mother so early? Showing a presence of mind far ahead of my age, I stopped the video, gave some books to the guys (as if in mock combined study) and opened the door…. only to see Ashokan, our milk vendor standing at the door. Breathing a sigh of relief I took the milk in and gave back the vessel.

The show was right back on track when almost immediately the calling bell sounded again. “Must be Ashokan again, maybe he wants some money”. I stopped the video (I had set up our VCR so that when it was stopped the T.V came on automatically) and opened the door again. Only to see the smiling face of my mother (I have gone on record once about mother’s smiles, I felt much the same again). She brushed right past me into the living room. I was so shocked that I could hardly move. I made some drooling noises that sounded like “why are you so early?”, “Oh! My God!” etc and followed her in a state of moronic stupor.

In the living room she was surprised to find so many of my friends, all of them looking at her as if she was the walking dead. They may have been my closest buddies, but at the time of reckoning, all those supremely ungrateful wimps ran helter skelter. So much for friendship and all that bull shit. The only people left standing were me and Anwar. In fact I didn’t count as “people” right then the mummy effect had mummified me.

Amma looked at me and asked, “What is happening? entha parungunne?” why are you acting so shifty? I said “nothing”. “No, you have done something, I am sure!” It was not a question but a statement of facts. I had to give it to her, this mother mine, she had intuition(God’s biggest crime against man!!!) by the ton! After the “statement” she gave me one more appraising look and went into her room. Anwar told me that he will stay on for some more time for “immoral support” but I shooed him away. This was anyway the last day in my life, why should I take him down with me, was my line of thinking.

Anwar left. The tape was still in the VCR and I had to take it out before Amma found out the details. Right now, she only knew I did something wrong but not exactly what I did. And believe me if you knew my mother you wouldn’t want her to know either!!

Fortunately, she had closed the door when she went into the room. I went up to the VCR and ejected the tape, just as it came out, my brother walked in. Thinking “idivettu ettavanae patti kadicha pole” I pushed it right back in. There was one problem though. When a tape is pushed in to my VCR, it would start playing automatically, pressing the stop button was useless! The moment it started playing, I looked at my brother with a dead-man look, only to see that he had gone into the kitchen! I stopped it, said a “praise the lord” and was about to eject it when he comes right back and starts watching the T.V program.

To many people the complex theories of relativity put forward by Einstein would be beyond their understanding. I myself was in that group till this moment in my life. Those five minutes that my brother watched T.V is all the time I took to understand the full import of relativity. Those were easily the longest five minutes in my whole life.

He then got up and went for a re-fill. This was my chance! I had to get it out before he came back! I ran forward ejected the tape and the moment it was in my hand, both Antony and Amma walked into the room. People often wonder how I am able to deal with stress and tension so easily. Well, if they had my kind of childhood they wouldn’t be asking that question! Saying a deep prayer and trusting everything in the hands of our lord, I took the tape, turned around, walked casually back to the table where we used to put our tapes and placed them there. It was all done so naturally, that both of them did not notice anything. And if the Oscar committee saw my performance, Tom Hanks would have lost his statuette that year.

My baptism by fire was over. I stood up a mature man. It was time for some historic decisions to be made. The most significant two of them being that from now on, the table with the tapes would be moved near to the T.V and installing a peephole for our door.

I still remember that day with a shiver along my spine*, but I never truly understood what I had escaped till I went for a cousin’s marriage. The marriage reception was held in a posh hall in Ernakulam. After the cake cutting, it was time for the speeches. The first of which was delivered by another cousin who was a bosom buddy of the one getting married. He had the crowd in splits with all the funny things these guys had managed to do during their childhood. Everything was interesting, but one anecdote stood out from the rest.

The cousin getting married had once rented a blue film from a shop near his house and failed to return it even after a week. In the end the shop owner came to his house and asked his father for the tape. For months later, his father called him "blue". And now, right on his wedding day, in front of a thousand strong crowd, the story was out again. Boy! I really had escaped some major humiliation.

*I was so shocked by this incident that it took me a full seven days to get normal and air the next "show"!!!

7 comments:

stillwaters said...

Hey I think i know u!!!! LOL!! haha Its just that I've heard a very similar story from a male friend of mine.. I guess all guys have ended up in a similar kind of tangle in their school days.. But what totally surprised me is that the big scare only managed to keep u off porn for a week!!! I was expecting you to be cleansed for life!! :D But I guess thats asking too much of a man... :D :D
Anyway, hilarious read..
keep posting.. Have a great day at work..

മഞ്ഞുതുള്ളി said...

:)

can i give a small speech on ur wedding day ?
:)

Abraham Menacherry said...

Stillwaters: ha ha yeah it will take more than that to "cure" me.

Tess: No way!!!!...:D

Nikhil said...

Tess... You should definitely give a speech on his wedding day..I can provide you more interesting, adventurous stories abt aby... :):)

Aby.. bhoomiyile ellaa paappangalum eettedukaan ninakke maathramee kazhiyullu :))

Bonnie said...

aby my man..I will also give a speech on your wedding...dont think you can return the favor, i will kick your ass.

Abraham Menacherry said...

Nikhil: Bhoomiyille ella papangalum "namukku" randu perkum koodi elkam... ottakku fayankara bore ayirikkum...:D

Bonnie: I beleive in strict barter system. One speech here means another speech there... Mothathil "injurious to health" so let us forget all that...:)

Paddy said...

I had some similar experiences too. Those were really tense situations :)