Saturday, October 18, 2008

Sorrowful is the light my child and so soothing, the dark!*

What is the longest running show on planet earth?
Sholay? Ha! It ran for a mere 5 years and that too, only in 1 theatre.
DDLJ? 7 years. Good, but not good enough to beat the mega show of the century(ies)

“Sorrowful is the light my child but soothing is the dark!” Never heard of it? That maybe since it is not a film in the true sense of the word. But once I introduce the cast and crew, the bulb in your head is going to light up (assuming that you paid your bill of course!)

Director: KSEB (Kerala state electricity board)
Producer: Govt. of Kerala
Actors: You and family.
Viewers: Hmm… considering it is dark, there is nothing much to view.

Like any other soap serial it has its fanatical followers and extreme detractors. I was born agnostic and should have been in neither faction. But in this case, I am definitely an avid supporter.

Power cuts are the epitome of get-togetherness when the whole nuclear family gets around the candle/emergency lamp/solar lamp and gossip to our hearts content. In fact, the most celebrated and eminent psychologist of our time Dr. Menacherry Avarachen** once remarked that “The absence of meaningful communication in the nuclear family is the root cause of all social evil, leading to mass suicides and general depression among the masses. One of the best man made remedies to this alarming disease was devised by our dear KSEB in their power cuts!”

Allow me to prove this theory in a more scientific fashion, with the relative advantages and disadvantages of a power cut.

No T.VNo T.V!
A great communication enabler. Everybody gossips!
Reduces global warming
Helps to develop keener eyesight and hearing
Reduces stress as one needn’t watch the horribly terrible, tear-jerking mallu soap serial where everyone seems to be crying their bloody hearts out.Can have unforeseen side affects. Once, a tape containing some “funny” material got stuck in my V.C.R and God only knows the stress I went through till the power came back.
A nice excuse not to study. “Ammae do you want me to spoil my eyes reading in this dim light” dialogue always works!
An outlet to vent out for your sadistic urges. Pinching bottoms is so easy and nobody whacks you in return.

As you can see, the power-cut is one of the greatest social enablers of our time. This path-breaking treatment for depression and other such illness is sure to see new heights with the K.S.E.B announcing one hour cuts. Three cheers for K.S.E.B for providing this kind of “dhamaka” entertainment! What an idea K.S.E.B!!

*വെളിച്ചം ദുഖം ആണ് ഉണ്ണി തമസല്ലോ സുഗപ്രധം
** Any resemblance to living people is purely intentional.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The last of the Teetotalers

[warning: Only Malaylees might understand this post due to the specific context and characters used.]

Minister Paambu Velayudhan of the respected Govt. of Kerala was in a foul mood. It was a beautiful Hartal day when the Minister was enjoying his bottle of toddy, by a field of paddy and totally happy when those damn Green peace people (Stooges of a foreign capitalist power!!) called for a meeting to discuss about a highly endangered species.

The minister initially tried to squirrel out of the meeting, but finally, thinking of the poor endangered species he decided to attend.

The meeting
Green peace official (GPO): Sir there is an alarming decrease in the number of this exotic species. It is time that your venerable Govt. took action to save it from extinction.
Minister: I think you foreigners are exaggerating as usual. I am sure that there must be at least a thousand of those left in our beautiful state.
GPO: No sir! I am not exaggerating one bit. Our expert team has searched high and low for this species with no luck. We have used advanced G.P.S technology, satellite sensing, infra red imaging, nuclear fission and other classified technologies to find the last of the species, but all our efforts have resulted in failure. It is time now for the Govt. to take stock of this alarming situation.
Minister: Utter balderdash! Did you ask our most capable and fearless animal tracker to find this species?
GPO: Err.. no sir, who is this great man?
Minister: Shikari Shambu! Rest assured, I will put this expert on the job and he will get you a dozen of the species in no time.
GPO: Thank you sir!
Minister: By the by, what did you say was the scientific name of this exotic species?
GPO: “Sober Malabaricus homo sapien” It also goes by the alias “Pinthiri Teetotaler Malayalee”

The elusive species
On receiving instructions from the honorable Minister, Shikari Shambu packed his gun, upped his trousers, downed his hat and legged it to the nearest forest. This was the most difficult assignment he had ever faced. He spent months on end searching the forests of Kerala for this exotic species but with little luck. Up and down and north and south, there was no sign of this Sober Malabaricus imbecile! Those green peace people were right. The last of this species seemed to have died out millennia ago!

Thus, one fine day, he was sitting totally dejected, gun supporting chin, thinking of the next plan of action when Kapish made his appearance. “Looking looking twine, curling around leg”* thought Shikari Shambu. Kapish was the most intelligent monkey** on the planet, he would definitely know about this God forsaken species!

Shikari Shambu: Hey! Kapish! Have you seen this Sober Malabaricus homo sapien species anywhere?
Kapish: Yes, he made this state by throwing an axe, but that was a long time back. I don’t know about any more of the species!
Shikari Shambu looked downright unhappy at this sad news. There went his retirement plan!

On seeing the Shikari so thoroughly dejected Kapish felt sorry for him. He thought long and hard and finally devised a plan of action.
Kapish: Shikari! Don’t be so dejected! I have a plan up my sleeve…. Err.... tail!
Shikari: Oh really? What is it?
Kapish: There is another species in the state which fits all the characteristics of your exotic species. But it is not a pure Malayalee species… actually, it is Gujarati. But don’t worry, it has been in the state for many years now and can pass off as an authentic Malayalee.
Shikari: How did you come across this thing? I have been trying to find it for so long!
Kapish: Long story dude, but the short of it is that once this species made me pose in three different positions. Some kind of "photographic" tendencies, I think.
Shikari: Yuck.. that’s sick!
Kapish: Takes all kinds to make a world buddy!

Following the instructions provided by Kapish, Shikari Shambu made haste and found out not one, but many specimens of the species at different corners of the state. Apart from their un-natural abstinence from liquor (which was the defining quality of the species) it also exhibited a remarkable stiffness in its body. Under most circumstances it actually refused to move an inch. It was only after Shikari downed his bottle of toddy that it seemed to move a wee bit.

All the specimens were forwarded to the honorable Minister who in turn forwarded them to the GPO’s. The green peace team was totally stupefied by the capabilities of Kerala’s foremost animal tracking expert and offered him an onsite opportunity in America (Amazon forest!) Everyone was happy and three cheers, sorry prayers were said for the long life of this endangered species.

Epilogue 1
News Item in Manorma: “A number of statue thefts have taken place in the state, most of them being Gandhi statues. Eyewitnesses could not identify the person due to his peculiar hat. It covered his eyes!

Epilogue 2
Malayalees spent more on liquor than on rice and I am part of the disease… It has made me feel so depressed that what I really want now is another drink!

* തേടിയ വള്ളി കാലില്‍ ചുറ്റി....:D
** Indian Monkeys are kind of talkative!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Exam time..:(

I was tagged by two people this past week. Reflections and Mathew. Since I live in perpetual fear of my mother stumbling across my blog (we have our little differences, but I really don’t want her to have a heart attack…:D) I have decided to postpone the “addictions” tag from Reflections by about a decade.

It is customary to write two lines about the person who has tagged you. But I pass the opportunity, since I don’t have anything nice to write about Mathew. Any guy who cooks like Mathew does, well, I just plain envy them. Period.

RULE #1 People who have been tagged must write their answers on their blogs and replace any question that they dislike with a new question formulated by them.

RULE #2 Tag 3 people to do this quiz and those who are tagged cannot refuse. These people must state who they were tagged by and cannot tag the person whom they were tagged by. Continue this game by sending it to other people.

1. If your lover betrayed you what would your reaction be?
Was that a nuclear explosion you heard in the back ground?

2. What’s it that you see in an ideal partner?
Is this some kind of trick question?? I thought, everyone thought it was breasts!

3. What, according to you, is the perfect date?
One in which she pays the bill.

4. Would you like to have children soon enough? Or would you wait till your mid-thirties for the first child?
I don't mind passing on my DNA. But my responsibility ends right there!

5. Will you fall in love with your best friend?
I aint gay!!!

6. Which is more blessed: loving someone or being loved by someone?
Couldn’t care less, all that matters is whether or not we have sex.

7. How long do you intend to wait for someone you love?
As long as I have somebody else... ad infinitum!

8. If the person you secretly like is attached, what will you do?
The guys married to Salma Hayek and Monica Bellucci better watch out, is all I can say.

9. If you could root for one social cause, what would it be?
Legalizing Marijuana, Hash, LSD, Cocaine.....

10. Do you lie?
No. Err… I did it again!

11. Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?
Thalle! naatukare appozhekkm enne thalli konnittondakumadae!... (Don’t bother to translate!)

12. What’s your fear?
That Salma Hayek is growing old and I haven’t got my onsite to Mexico yet!

13. What kind of person do you think the person who tagged you is?
I'll bet that right now he must be cuddling his n'th girlfriend and crooning to her… "Dear, add some more sugar..." Hey! Stop cooking! It’s an unfair advantage, a genetic disorder and waaay under the belt!

14. Would you rather be single and rich or married and poor?
Objection your honor! The question is irrelevant considering that Salma Hayek is rich.

15. If you fall in love with two people simultaneously who will you pick?
Infinite loop, system crash!

16. Would you forgive and forget someone no matter how horrible a thing he has done?
The forgiveness, I outsource unto god. The revenge… that is mine!

17. Do you prefer being single or in a relationship?
God only knows all the crap man endures just to have some decent sex. Yeah, sure…. relationship!

18. What is your all time favorite film?
American Pie…ok, ok its Forrest Gump

From these answers, I must now appear to the reader as a sensitive, loving, caring human being, brimming with life and firmly on the path to saint hood. But, let me explicitly state that such was not my intention per se. It is just that these profound questions brought out the best in me….:D

Ladies… queue please!! This is not!!

I now tag
And Nishanth i.e when that Mandan starts his blog!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Gone with the wind

The movie?? No no, it is about ma favorite topic… Me!!

I was born with this inferiority complex…. That I would never be a 6 foot tall hunk, muscles popping and the ladies ogling (you know, the stereotype!)

Each time I see a guy who fits the bill, I go mad with frustration and each time I see a female who is an inch taller than I am, I am on the verge of tears! Why God? Why? Why did you make me so short? Why couldn’t you add just an eeny weeny 5 inches more to my dwarf frame eh? Like most prayers sent skywards this one too returns with an “un-opened… return-to-shorty” typed in bold.

And to add insult to injury I was born thin. Emaciated-and-short in a boy’s school is no laughing matter. You always ended up with the support role. Anybody who felt like whacking you up (which was quite often) would in all probability, whack you up. To live through those 10 years, I had to grow nails, some really fast legs and teeth that could bite through hippo hides. And what’s more, even on the days you won the battle, the war was lost when the vanquished scathingly comments “bah! He fights like a girl, all tooth and nails, why don’t you join Mount Carmel girl’s school eh??” And the victor’s smile is wiped off!

Of all the screwed up comments I’ve had to put up with (sack-of-bones was just the beginning!) “yevanae, onnu oothiyal paranne pokumello” (a wind could blow him off) was the most insulting. I mean, unlike the other taunts this one was a blatant lie!

I did pull-ups, I played basketball, I bugged my parents to buy me wonder shoes which would magically increase your height, I pestered doctor relatives to give me steroids and I even (hold your breath) prayed!! But nothing worked. It is in your genes (and your heels) you know. I ended up 5 inches shorter than expectations.

Fortunately, I did not stay thin for long after my engineering. Some metabolic miracle (read aging) happened and suddenly mine was no longer the high-input, high-output system that it once was. The output started dimming and the input started growing around my tummy. I don’t know many people who would be pleased to have a round tummy, but I am one of them. In Malayalam we call it “thara-vaaditham”.

But 3 years down the line, with a protruding tummy, an intruding chest and skinny limbs, I had this wonderful idea… Get a 6-pack!. So what if my genes denied me my rightful 6 foot height? I could cheat them with my 6-pack. Revenge, sweet revenge! It was ten years late in the coming, but then better late than never.

So, off I went and joined this gym. Rs.500 joining fee, Rs.250 monthly fee, the instructor said. I waived my card without batting an eye. Ha! 750 rupees for a 6 pack… I would pay an arm and a leg for it! (Skinny ones, that is). The routine was fairly straight forward. Get up at 6 A.M in the morning, put on the track suit, jog to the gym, warm up exercises, jump up, jump down, spread out limbs, tuck in belly, look in the mirror, wipe out that constipated-look-on-weight-lift, cycle, die… err sorry I mean rest, drag your sorry ass back home, shower, put on nice clothes, office, work, eat, sleep, gym.

“ethra nalla nadaaatha swanpnangal!!*”. I haven’t ever seen the world at 6 A.M. In fact, I am not so sure it exists except in the realm of dreams at that uncivilized hour. This morning shift was a no-starter…:( I did it for one day, I did it for two days and then as lolan(our mega pinthiri) predicted, I did it on the third day on a purely metaphysical plane (read bed). Hey! stop smirking! I did it one more day than he predicted. It is definitely an achievement of no small proportion.

I shifted to evening shift but 6 P.M is really not a time for exercising. You are already tired, your non-existent mental strength is ah, well non-existent and motivation is in the pits. I persevered for exactly one week... Each day after working out, I would go and stand semi-nude in front of the mirror (ladies… control, control!!).

Protruding belly – Check
Intruding chest – Check
Non-existent shoulder muscles – Check
Skinny limbs – Check
Panting-like-a-dog-plus-constipated-look – Check
6-Pack – No check!!

Great progress huh? ok, ok, who am I trying to kid! As some parents are wont to say “nine ondakkunna samayathe oru vaazha nattirunengil…**” Mine was a fruitless labor. All of my 6-Packs has now joined together to form a consolidated sack.

It even brought out the poet in me.

It is no small honor,
To be lord of a manor,
Six sacks and bladder,
To hell with it, puttar!

Thus, I am currently the proud owner of a 6-sack*** body and a bruised ego thanks to lolan’s taunts of “I told you so!” Thankfully, with all the weight I am gaining around my tummy, “Gone with the wind” evokes no more dread!

*Such nice un-realizable dreams
**If I had planted a tree when I was making him... for the record "some parents" not equal to "my parents"!
***മലയാളത്തില്‍ "ചാക്ക്" എന്നും പറയും - Dialogue courtesy Samjith.