Thursday, 30 June 2011

My Secret Garden!

I am an avid gardener! I know all my kith and kin would be laughing their heads off, reading this...I grew up in a small town middle class household where there was no space whatsoever for garden, leave alone a few potted plants. Mother loved roses so much that she kept them growing in tiny flower pots- tiny pink button roses, a beautiful white creeper and the refreshingly aromatic pink Edward roses. With the little space available, she had grown her favorite plants. I have her same genes, note, not Jeans...I planted beans first, as a vivacious ten year old. It was amazing when the shoot climbed up, i remember sitting by the plant for hours together and Mother's happy smile seeing the purple flowers. 

Then i grew zinnia flowers in little pots. Anything i could lay my hands on became my flower pots- i remember the thrashing i received for using a metal bucket! S helped me further by falling on my tomato plants and breaking every twig on the poor plant. My ardent love for plants grew and grew- burgeoned till i married and found a house with lots of space for gardening. Ah, arise, awake and grow dear girl, i said to myself. We planted a few miniature crotons along the entry. L loved trees- we had the most common trees planted- coconut, banana, mango, guava, pomegranate, drumstick, all these at the rear and sides and a few lovely roses in the front patio. All went well, L loved watering the plants and i liked to sit back and watch! I was branded a lazy goosey right from time immemorial at home and so i never paid heed when taunted by everyone, for not watering the plants.

When L left, Dad took to watering and taking care of the plants followed by my beloved sister in law. I love plants, i love the flowers but there is one hindrance in going near them- the legless crawlers! With a house in reclaimed river bed and agricultural plots, what more can you expect? Snakes, loads and loads of them, visit us every week! They enjoy basking in the tropical sun inhaling the exotic night queen flowers and jasmine flowers that bloom every evening. And their presence is so unnerving to me that i hate to enter my garden anytime of a day! When i hear the word Snake...i jump up on my cot! There are so many varieties- cpmmon green snakes, garden snakes, vipers and occasionally, we have been visited by kraits. I had the experience of seeing my son cycling away happily with a water snake acting his pilot! Weighing my options, i had decided gardening is not so important when you are frightened by an ardent army of snakes. 

Having lost the love for gardening, I love to watch dad water the plants and I restrict myself to watching the squirrels play in the coconut tree, the frogs jump out of the banana tree and the little sparrows building nests on the night queen climber. As for gardening and my flair for it, I keep to myself playing on Farmville!!! Hail, Facebook, hail, Farmville!

Friday, 24 June 2011


I walk into my office after a rickety bus ride and enter huffing and puffing. I try to plaster a smile to my twitched lips and feel it parched and dry. I want to lick it wet and go about my business, but wait- You can't do it here! This is my office- the sanctum sanctorum of work ethic, code of conduct and code of blah*blah*I can conveniently forget about my looks and sit in my seat stoically. I try to look neat and in proper order, my colleagues brand me a fashion-crazy brat! I methodically carry a tiny mirror, a comb, a lip-gloss, little loose face powder and a few tissues. But seldom do i use it in office, just for the fear i may be branded a brat...

Every morning when i enter the office, that full length mirror starts mocking me and by mid day, every customer who turns out at the counter looks at me bemused. Some look bewildered at the state of my hair- sticking out in all directions, 360 degrees...The oil from my hair has a mind of its own, it flows from my forehead, runs along my nose and bathes my chin. The T of my face looks so oily, may be Idhayam will book me for their next gingelly oil ad! Good-riddance Jyo! And the ultimate one comes those days when i keep jasmine flowers in my 3 inches hair. As the clock ticks on, the thread gets lengthier. By the day end, when i vacate my seat, there will be flowers strewn all over and a very irritated ( obviously!) male occupying the same chair for his next shift;) 

The obvious fashion and decency faux pas that usually occur in office are WMF ( Wardrobe Mal Function), SLTM ( Sunday Longer Than Monday), PKOC (Pull the Kitten Outta the Cupboard) and the perennial peekaboos! I start with WMF- You plan the green saree could go well with your black blouse and enter your office with a great do i look beautiful smile. Alas! the smirks on your female colleagues' faces and the lopsided smile of your male counterparts tell the whole story. You are an avid inventor, only next to Da Vinci. You are artistic and Da Vinci would be wincing, glancing at your sea blue ( or is it sea green?) and pink ensemble from Up Above! You wish you knew who invented the matching blouse ideology. May be a bowl of your hand made halwa will ensure he never invents anything else...

Who might be better to illustrate international WMF than our Britney? What a dress to sport when you carry a nursing baby! I hate men who sport blue pants and green shirts...Worse  still, the Father of all Wardrobe Mal-Functions- our Kollywood and Tollywood Super Duper stars! "Champestanu...." roars Tollywood SuperHero in a  parrot green pants, cotton candy pink shirt, white belt and a huge silver buckle, oh- all this teamed up with canary yellow shoes....Oh my, i would swoon if i get to see one such person!

And the SLTM factor is ever present in office, especially the unassuming women folk. You never know something is amiss, until someone in the crowd outside or your friend inside the office points out. Probably Naidu Hall must be paying Royalty to all these SLTM women who advertise their bra...nd! I usually use the SLTM quote in office when unsuspecting staff suffer from this syndrome. They make a quick check...It doesn't look nice if Sunday is Longer Than Monday, you see!
SLTM ( Sunday Longer Than Monday)

Then there is the PKOC- Pull the Kitten Outta Cupboard which occurs often in churidhar clad women. As per definition, i always do a personal check while getting up;) And oh...the peekaboos! Sarees always play spoilsport when worn to office, which restricts your freedom of movement. I, in particular feel having been paralysed on my left, every time i don a saree...The Idi Amins of city buses and professional goldsmiths ( hehehe...they find every opportunity to rub on you!)  in offices, always have a knack of checking out the peekaboos at the right time! It is usually the mid section that mortifies us to eternal shame. To look decent, I always use half a dozen pins at all strategic locations to avoid unwarranted peekaboos.  And the dupattas- the less said, the better! I prefer to pin it up on both the shoulders when in office, to save some grace. I cringe when someone sports a dupatta that lies carelessly draped around the neck, exhibiting everything else... 

In office, dear friend? Check out WMF, SLTM, PKOC and peekaboos...Save your personal dignity and the men, from committing A Deadly Sin- staring at you! God save the women...

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

My experiments with beauty!

Do you like looking beautiful? Who wouldn't, right? I try to remember since when i have been visiting my beautician- sounds time immemorial! I started the easiest and economical thing growing teens do- threading my eyebrows. The first time i finished threading, the poor beautician was sweating and swearing. She might have thought- Why such fuss for a simple threading? For those who have "enjoyed" the swivel chair, while threading, the positions how you place your fingers holding the eyebrows and the fast snip of thread can still mean "terror". Mark my words, the first time you thread is sure a nightmare, you end up with puffed eyelids and brows reminding you of the Caveman's better half.

Mother used to frighten me saying bleaching and facial treatment would leave my skin wrinkled and dry. To compensate the dryness ( my skin was absolutely ok, even oily!), i tried every trick i could read as beauty tips. Stuffs you could have never imagined- honey, multani mitti, papaya paste, ground custard apple, neem, sandal wood paste, saffron, milk cream, i tried everything under the sun before my first bleach experience. Again, it was a pre-planned disaster, planned and executed by my beautician. She suggested i try some herbal bleach as i was a first timer. I almost shrieked in horror looking at my caked face on the parlor's mirror! And the worst part came when the parlor assistant tried to steam my face. Whaaaaaaaaaat? I looked at the apparatus in dismay- fumes were rising like a miniature volcano from it. Should i put my face over there? I look incredulously at my friend who took me to the parlor. Oh, you are altready half way down to becoming Aishwarya Rai, i said to myself and continued my ordeal. The next step was scrapping the black heads from my nose using that odd-looking needle and there ended my patience. Who wanted a la Aishwarya? I just wanted to get up and run away from that swivel chair as fast as my legs would carry!

As years passed by, i loved the visit to my beautician, i got some quality time to myself, snoring away with the face pack on, with curious onlookers peering! Pampering oneself at the cost of a poor man's wallet ( the menfolk of the house, who else?) was doing great to boost my battered female ego. See, i was avenging the men of the house who never give me my personal space and time... My monthly visit to the parlor was the most heatedly debated issue at home, by hook or crook, i won all arguments FOR a parlor visit. I experimented a lot with my poor hair- perming, then straightening, again ironing, rebonding and finally when so little hair was left in the scalp, i gave up! Now i really don't know what hairstyle i sport and sincerely oil my hair everyday. I end up with so much oil on my face everyday, guys who manage to look at me must think- Does she pour all her monthly ration of oil in her hair, a single day? 

Then came the Mother of all Beauty Tricks- Slimming Clinics. I watched with my mouth wide open when the beautician explained how she could reduce 10 kgs of fat in 10 days by slimming. Diet and regular sittings- a kg loss cost a thousand bucks! Oh well, why not give a try, i thought. But worldly wise this time over, i decided to lie low and watch what happened to sister-in-law who enrolled in a slimming session. She lost 10 kgs in 10 sittings and i was awe-struck! I was thunder struck when sis in law gained 20 kgs immediately after the sessions were over. Thank you dear God, you saved my husband's hard earned 10000 bucks! Tired of all experimenting, all i do these days is to visit parlors for an eyebrow threading, bleach, facial and a good afternoon siesta once a month. It is the same herbal bleach and pack every time, how much ever that woman in the parlor tries to convince me...I am sick of all New looks! Does this mean I am getting old? Old or young, all i feel is I AM BEAUTIFUL!!! 

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Quality education- only for the High and Mighty?

The news item in Daily Thanthi interested me so much that i decided to write a post on it. Education in India is a multi billion dollar business run by the Education Mafia. The Government stands a lame by-stander watching the game. For the poor and the down trodden, quality education remains a distant dream. I read on Daily Thanthi newwpaper this article on June 16, 2011- The article speaks vividly about the admission of Erode District Collector Dr Ananthakumar's daughter in a Government Primary School. As we all know about Daily Thanthi and it's constructive(?) journalism, i don't dwell much on the description of the episode.

Collector Dr Ananthakumar fills out admission form and his daughter
attends her classes in Government Primary School.
But the gist of the news is this- Erode District's Collector Dr Ananthakumar was present in Kumalankuttai Government Primary School to acmit his daughter in Second Standard. He was offered a VIP chair to sit, but refused to sit and occupied a bench along with the other parents. He filled up the admission form and asked for school unifrom. The Head Mistress of the school replied that Government supply was only for the children enrolled in Noon Meal Scheme and the Collector enrolled his daughter in the Scheme too, saying his daughter would take food under the scheme. And the high light of the news- " Forgetting the fact that she was the daughter of the District Collector, his daughter Gopika sat down along with other students studying there." Oh my! Daily thanthi and its Constructive Journalism(!) Who knows, the scribe must have thought Collectors and their children descend from Heavens Above!

A welcome move by the District Collector, who has taken the right initiative in enrolling his daughter in a Government School which even the lower middle class would not contemplate! Ask the DC's peon- his son or daughter might be studying in a Residential School with all amenities. Officers like Dr Ananthakumar bring us a whiff of fresh air. While we must congratulate the Collector for his brave and steadfast decision which none of us, including me would take, i am deeply disturbed by Amma and her antics. She vehemently refuses to implement the "Samacheer Kalvi" ( New syllabus). This syllabus is a genuine step in  bringing about a uniform education system in the state. Why should the Education Mafia, who were once thugs selling arrack, rule our education system? If the syllabus is the same for Government and Matriculation Schools as well, why would people shell out tens of thousands for admissions in private schools? Amma's refusal makes one wonder how much the Education Mafia paid as ransom for upholding their monopoly in education business.

Ironically, the Government has gingerly accepted to follow the Samacheer Syllabus for 1st and 6 th standard students, tearing away objectionable portions of the books and pasting stickers on objectionable portions. Now this duty is undertaken by teachers of both classes throughout the State who paste green stickers ( note Amma's favourite color!) and tear off objectionable papers. The Education Department Officials have issued oral orders to ensure that students don't remove the stickers. If books are found with stickers removed, action will be taken against the concerned teacher! Poor teachers... never in their life would they have torn so many pages!
Teachers tearing away pages like mad in a center!
I thank my lucky stars i am a Railway clerk, not a State Government Teacher. Tearing away tickets is better than tearing pages from books;) I earnestly request Amma to change her stance on Samacheer syllabus. It is for the betterment of the people- after all these people voted her to power. Going by her past, it seems Amma has learnt nothing from her mistakes- she loves to continue her Hitler Rule- and now the poor students are caught in the cross fire. God save the children from Amma!

Friday, 17 June 2011

Sibling Rivalries

This post is seriously...ahem...dedicated to my dear brothers S and R;) 

I am almost plucking all my hair in despair...Dealing with a beloved brother or sister is a real nightmare especially if you are the eldest. My dear brothers made sure i ended up half mad, fixing alliances for them. The elder one did crazy things so  much that i felt dealing with a lunatic in full form! When young, as siblings, we were a very happy lot, playing blame games and had fun complaining each other to Mother. Let us call the elder one S and younger one R. S by nature was a trouble monger, but was so diplomatic, always landing blame either on me or R. R had always been in the receiving end of Mother's Love *wink*wink...S hoodwinked Mother so much, she believed R and me were always troublesome. We together broke a wall clock- ahem, it was rather I, when playing cricket in the living room. Together we dumped idlis- our daily breakfast, on the lofts at home. After five years when the painters ended up with a box full of dry idli balls, all Hell broke loose. I still vividly remember the thrashing received that day! Ouch, that hurts! We broke a sofa(!) and ended up as an unceremonious pile on the floor. Enter Mother with a broom...I could see she was fuming but one look at us piled up on the floor- she burst out laughing. And we too, went by the game.

S was fiercely overprotective and possessive. Every time i wore my skirt and left from home, S's scrutinising eyes peered and scanned entire area for trouble. All this, when he was younger by a good four years! Argh! Sigh* Mother tried to discipline us by promoting healthy competition...ahem...But what got promoted was full fledged wrestling for the Mamma's child post! How much ever we did fight, S ended up Mamma's darling and  me and R the unfortunate tyrants. As years passed, fledglings grew wings and flew away from home and Mother, but still, there was the same undercurrent of rivalry and I must be better than my brother or sister syndrome!
All our rivalries came to an END when Mother died all of a sudden. The only person who loved to see children better each other in competing was dead and gone. Her death forged us together and as the eldest girl of the family, i was left with two unsettled brothers. As we laid her to rest and stood praying on her grave, i received my own Enlightenment! Gone was the feeling they were my siblings and rivals. They looked more vulnerable, small and unprotected. S and R are now my own children, or so i feel. And may be this has given me the Mother Hen attitude! I keep picking at them both for all their little escapades and i know they hate me like Hell for that. The worst part came when S married.

Oh did he behave? He wanted everything done His way! Starting from the wedding card, the mangal sutra, the garlands, bouquet, the wedding attire, stage decoration, everything had to be done His way. I remember certain gruelling episodes then-
 1. He started from Trichy at 4 am and dumped me in Tirunelveli  ( 350 kms) in exactly 4 hours- at 8 am. I was belted to the seat, fully reclined and was counting the bones when i alighted down the car!.
 2. He wanted a wedding card in baby pink with a pink rose on it, with a golden tag and pearl. We went to Lovely cards Sivakasi at 10 pm, when the shutters were half down and spent well over  two hours selecting his card! By the time we left the showroom, entire Sivakasi was in deep sleep!
3. S wanted bouquet only from Tuticorin, as he loved the bouquet my husband brought for me. Now a trip to Tuticorin and along winded by-lanes, a severe woman- hunt for the lady who did my bouquet. We finally located her after a day's search and ordered the veil and bouquet exactly as per S's preference, off white and gold combination! The icing in the cake was S's funny fight at ten o clock in the night, a day before the wedding. S argued that his bouquet was not so glittery as the bride's. Now, it was R's turn to take a lightening visit to the nearest shop to buy glitters. I remember pasting glitters on his bouquet at twelve midnight!

4. S wanted a rose petal garland unique to Coimbatore area. My darling wanted it from Tirunelveli. Again, a ride to Tirunelveli asking every florist if they knew how to tie the special rose petal garland...Finally one of our childhood friend's relative agreed to it, after seeing the pictures! Poor florist! He went to Madurai to learn how to tie garland- S style!
5. S wanted his bride to have unique flowers- orchids! Orchids? Oh well, he might have thought, let sister dear arrange it from Western ghats! We managed to locate a florist in Chennai(!) and the sprayed orchid travelled 16 hours before  reaching our place!
6. S loved crackers- the louder the better, the colorful the best. So, another purchase from Sivakasi- direct from the wholesaler.
7. Ah..then came the wedding attire- the entire wedding resembled a fashion show- traditional coats for wedding, blazers for engagement and Sherwanis for receptions. All purchases in Chennai- another trip, stay in hotels, purchase in boutiques, slipper hunt for the bride, bindis, hairclips....*sigh* why the Hell did he not marry in a Registrar Office?

We had travelled more than 3000 kms for S's wedding and spent 3 months of meticulous planning. And how did i start for the wedding? My freshly permed hair still in coils! Applied nail polish in the car and on S's wedding day, i forgot to keep flowers in my hair- considered inauspicious by my grandmother....argh! Extra adrenaline and pumped up BP, i wonder why i did not have a heart attack when the garland did not arrive on time! The inlaws of S refused to welcome him without the Machchaan malai! R who went to collect them from a location 60 kms away would have given Schumacher a run for his money in Grand Prix! S refused to get down from the car without garland and i had to run from dining hall to his waiting car, armed with idlis and chutney, splashing sambar on my new designer saree...Awwwww man, how i hate S...*gritting teeth*...

And now history repeats itself. It is R's turn now and he is not at all helping me, by refusing every girl we show him! I am totally at loss as to what type of girl he likes. Whatever be the type, it is ultimately him who is going to live and him who is going to be my next Wedding nightmare. As i brace up for the next innings, all i can wonder is Dear God, why did you send me first?

Rajapakse- Elusive as ever...

Ban Ki Moon is still in deep slumber. May be we need a bull doze into the UN to discuss the burning issue of Srilanka with him. There were days when we thought the UN was the all powerful mediating body that could bring about international accountability and justice. But what has transpired is a spineless mammoth that hides behind perpetrators like Rajapakse. CD after CD surfaces on the Srilankan Tamil Genocide, the whole world watches in a disturbed silence, Ban Ki Moon plays hide and seek with the international media and India as usual sends envoys Sivasankara Menon and Nirupama Rao for a cup of famed Ceylon Tea with Rajapakse. All our Tamil regional parties forget the Srilankan Issue convenently when in power and remember all of a sudden Where there not Tamil people in Srilanka? Karuna loves 3 hour fasting scenes on the issue. Reminding him of Swami Nigamananda and his coma. Take care Karuna, don't count yourself always lucky in Fasting Parties!

Watch this video that recently surfaced in Channel 4, UK. The video contains graphic footages and i don't recommend viewing for the weak hearted. Rajapakse and the Srilankan Government (GoSL) cannot deny any wrong doing when the truth is out in the open for the whole world to see. It is crystal clear when Indian Government slips out of the scene saying this is Srilanka's internal matter. Sonia Gandhi is wrecking vengeance on the languishing Tamils for the death of her husband by LTTE's hands. Both Rajiv and LTTE are closed files and lingering on to the thought of punishing Tamils for no fault of theirs is inhumane. When will Indian Tamils wake up to reality? When will the world view Srilankan Tamil issue without bias? Questions remain unanswered. Rajapakse still refuses to rehabilitate 40,000 Tamils from refugee camps held against their will by GoSL military. NATO attacks Gaddafi for killing his own civilians in Libya. Whole world remains silent on Srilankan issue. Why the double standards? Simple- No Oil in Srilanka?
A picture from the 1983 Tamil massacre, the scene is no different now, after 28 years.

Same Sinhalese style massacre- 2010.

What happened in the LLRC ( Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Committee) that accepted secret witnesses traversing the country has offered no respite. The recent revelations in international media has aggravated the need for UN to push Rajapakse and the GoSL to be tried under an impartial International War Crimes Court.
Indian Government must STOP its all out effort to support Rajapakse and try to bring him under the Law. That would be the wish of every Tamil life snuffed out, every Tamil woman raped, every Tamil child orphaned. Should we count ourselves humans seeing our own kin die? The pain of Tamil diaspora that have fanned out across the globe with no land to call their own- is it not heart wrenching?  Let the World wake up to the cries of a clan- the Tamils of nowhere...ALL WE WANT IS A FAIR TRIAL INDICTING RAJAPAKSE AND RELEASE ALL TAMILS FROM REFUGEE CAMPS. Is this too much to ask for???

Monday, 13 June 2011

Autobiography of little things...

The dull roar of the air conditioners irritate me and the chill inside the office makes me feel numb. I sit atop  the marble counter top, flipping in the stale dirty air. Warily i view the surroundings. The counter clerk in Enquiry counter yells at the top of her voice to the old man across the counter. He peers at Madam through his scratched and foggy bi focals, trying to decipher her speech which i bet he could not hear. He appears to be  in his late seventies, all wrinkled and worn out. The Madam's tone has now almost reached supersonic decibels and i twitch my body hearing the ruckus she is making for just a few questions. All the poor old man wants is a senior citizen ticket in Pallavan Express to Chennai in S5 coach with boarding Srirangam, Window seat, facing the onward direction, opposite the sunlight, not near either the lavatories and seat among families. Why can't all trains have S5 coaches alone? Or will it not be better if there were no seats from 1 to 15 and 100 to 108? Phew! I myself am tired when Mr Old man leaves the Enquiry Counter to book a ticket in the Senior Citizen counter.      

Thank God, he is gone, i let out some air and wait patiently. The next one in queue is this gentleman who is restless. He moves his right hand to his mouth and ....oh no, not me and not again. He licks his tongue and reaches to lift one among us. My neighbor who was so far watching the drama silently is picked up by Mr Licker who spreads voluminous saliva and edges past the counter. I cross myself mentally, thanking God that i was not picked by Mr Licker. A beautiful teen in her jeans and worded tee stands next. I get the whiff of her mild perfume and inhale it happily. She starts her volley of questions to the clerk and i can see Mr Impatient standing next to her use the situation to his luck;) He snakes his hand from behind the unsuspecting teen and reaches for my next neighbor. Awwwwww...i send a silent Prayer above, Please God let him not lay his hands on me...dirty hands. He picks up my neighbor again and i am indeed relieved.

He stands near the counter and starts writing. His blue ink pen must have been a gift of his great grandfather from his great grandfather. It refuses to even scratch. He picks on the pen nib with his finger nails and tries writing. Again, no luck. Now Mr Impatient becomes clearly agitated, he flicks the pen and his right hand. Slop...the blue ink lands as an unceremonious patch on my unlucky neighbor in Mr Impatient's hands. I pity the poor fellow and await my turn. Now comes Mr Late who rushes with a gush of sweat and heat. He has probably missed his train and would want a cancellation, i think to myself. He picks up my neighbor in the front row and drains all his sweat on him. Poor neighbor...Dear God, let me not end up in the hands of Mr Sweaty and Wet- i think to myself. Who will be my Picker...i wait in silence.

This is the turn of Mr Earbud. He asks a few questions to the clerk, picks up a few of us and sits in the last chair. He must be very free, i muse to myself. Much to my chagrin, he starts to tear, roll and insert my neighbor in his left ear first. Mmmmmmmmm....i can see how glad he is, happily housekeeping his right and then left ear. Poor neighbor, she is discarded and the next neighbor is taken up for the ear- warming ceremony!

Mr Boozey arrives staggering. He is so drunk, he can't make out who is standing near him. I try to control my laughter, but sorry, Boozey doesn't help me. He picks me up and asks the clerk- " Zhoud i bill up a bom?" Poor lady, she can't stand the smell of Boozey, she covers her nostrils with her kerchief and says a meek yes sir. I sit silently watching what Boozey is going to do next. Apparently he is in no hurry, he is feeling jerky. I can see his eyes swim and before i could escape- Wham! Boozey does his job right. His timing and aim is perfect and i am done with. End of my life, AMEN. I am the most ill treated and damaged property in the Indian Railways. Yes, you guessed me right-

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Love finds a way...

Long time since i have talked about love...So, here is one to long distance love. World has shrunk today, we have advanced from desktops to i-phones. So, how are romantic relationships these days? My friend's sister said the other day- I follow Jesus Christ. Astonished she might end up a nun, i ask her Are you going to be a nun? She gives a Are you insane look and says- Nope, i forgive and forget- forgive myself for dumping him and forget him for the next better dude! Wow, that is some love.

Love birds these days jam skype and yahoo chat lines. Traffic jam online almost suffocates veteran long distance lovers like me! How strong are the bonds of love when love is long distance? STD love is better, you get to meet your partner often, sneak a secret outing, a dinner and a movie. What about ISD? Bad if your mate comes on vacation once in a few months and worse if the frequency is yearly. Your love will not be there when you are sick. A get well soon mail in the inbox which you can open after a week will taunt you. SMS frequencies of one an hour will trickle down to a Good morning darling and a Sweet dreams muuaaaah in a couple of months. You call him to say you have got a promotion and his voice inbox says for the thousandth time Hey! Am attending a meeting. Will get back to you shortly. The bespectacled dumbo of your office who always sits unmoving as a stone will now look a better choice to you!

I wonder how letters and mails can nurture a relationship. Love- long distance can work only if you communicate frequently, only if you are committed to the relationship, only if you put unwavering trust in your partner and only if you throw up ample surprises to stun your partner. There are so many Only-ies that baffle you. Youth these days seem to lack in all these departments and so, i hope long distance love usually fizzles out in a few months. You love to spend more quality time together and that is not possible when the skype cam says Internet connection lost! Smooching smileys never come anyway near the original stolen kisses... And for love these days, no love when there is no coochie coo...

Against all these odds, there are few people who keep the light shining, the fire burning. Distance means so little when someone means so much! I am glad there are some who live life long distance. There are families where fathers hear their babies' first cries over ISD calls. There are sons who narrate their day in school to Dads on yahoo chats. There are wives who spend hours together trying to decipher the nuances of making internet calls to their husbands. Strong commitment and trust peppered with little surprises make these relationships click and i hope Gen next learns to view relationships with renewed trust and commitment. Here is a toast to my long distance love L- Happy 9th Anniversary! I love you! May our love grow by leaps and bounds, courtesy- skype and yahoooooooooo!

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Overstepping the line? Apologies!

Another one goes down the drain. As i read the newspaper, my head spins counting the innumerable culprits and their sour "I am sorry". It all started ages ago, but the audacity of the happenings and the media coverage these days simply make every living day Hell for the culprits. Whoops...sorry, Woods is booed in every tourney he plays, Berlusconi flashes a bleeding nose on camera, hit by a statuette. Arnie the hunk remains strangely silent and the media go crazy. The latest to jump the train are IMF chief Dominic Strauss Kahn and US Congressman Anthony Weiner. What makes men in power go pant crazy is intriguing. You have the power, you call the cards, you have a loving family back at home. So, what makes a Premier of 74 look for a belly dancer aged 17? 

We never know what made the Italian Prime Minister bail out a belly dancer picked up for prostitution. Once the story of Karima Al Mahroug started surfacing on world media, we did sit up and take notice of the otherwise unknown Silvio. We lost interest when his line of girls went lengthier than Great Wall of China. I am very bad in statistics and i lost count of his umpteen affairs and sex parties. When he was hit on the face in full public glare with a statuette, i regretted it was not a shoe! For those zombies out there, next time, choose a good shoe or better- a little red boot! He just loves little red riding boots.

Tiger went from roaring to mewing when he called up that infamous press conference.Sniff...sniff...tears..I am sorry for all that happened. I ask privacy in these troubled times. Again sniff...sniff...Elin did the right thing in moving out of Woods' mansion. Was it seven or eight? The number of mistresses blew up- starting from event manager to waitress. Excuse me Woods, a waitress??? Tiger never got back to his form- on field, of course! Arnold the Terminator followed suit soon, he had his cake and ate it too, for twenty years in the same house with his wife! Arnie was again terribly sorry for fathering a love child to his housekeeper. How shameful it might be for Mrs Arnold who lived under the same roof with the housekeeper and step so(i)n unknowingly? Never mind, Arnie has apologized. 

IMF's Ex- Chief, Dominic Strauss Kahn has been arrested on charges of raping a chambermaid in a hotel. Close in heels follows US Congressman Anthony Weiner who sent sexually explicit images from his twitter account to a young woman. Anthony has apologized, there ends the matter. The swiftness with which these men acknowledged their mistakes and apologized to the entire world is what is bugging me. What do our Netas, who have fathered innumerable sons out of wedlock and have had string of affairs do? Apologise? NAAAAAAAH! Just ask for a DNA test and pull the case along the caverns of judiciary. Any doubts, kindly contact Shri ND Tiwari. Or better, ask Karuna, ex CM, Tamil Nadu. Call the first lady a WIFE and the next as COMPANION. You can always find a name for the rest in queue! 

Karunanidhi fasting with wife and companion, both
ladies seated on either side;)

Crossing the line next time? Just relax. It is easy! You can always apologize later. We shall forgive and forget soon!

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Code of Honor

A hipster is perched 3 inches below
the navel!
It happened again today! I sit cringing in the counter when the teen sways casually to her own rhythm and reaches the exit. As if on a trance, all eyes follow her back- men in awe and women, as usual in envy. Her low waist jeans and stretch tops are the cynosure of every eye in the small hall and the pretty teen knows that fully well. The extra sway of her hips say the story and i shake my head in disbelief the hundred and twentieth time this week. Women these days, especially the teen aged little angels seem to be treading on the ramp rather than the roads. I curse my day when it starts with a peekabo of my neighbor clad in nightie. Aged more than sixty, ti is funny when madam dear sweeps the threshold in red nightie. I almost died controlling my laughter when my colleague aged forty entered office one fine morning draped in a salwar. I am not a conservative who says saree is for women. It is a wee bit odd to see otherwise saree-clad elderly women in salwars.

Teens are ruled  by dress code these days. Colleges and Universities have specific dress codes and students ought to abide by that. I am glad most girls wear sarees and salwars to colleges rather than the dangerously perched jeans and catastrophically hiked minis. I was mortified in shame when i saw a teen in a busy shopping mall flashing her builder's bum in a low rise. How responsible parents of Indian households, who profess strict virtues when it comes to dress, handle such youngsters is appalling. When i was hovering in the threshold of youth, i was strictly forbidden from wearing jeans. After much pestering and begging, i was granted a dull blue jean that started from the chest and extended till the ground. I loitered around the streets sweeping floors with my jean. And a word about the skirts too. They resembled 10 feet trains of wedding gowns! Whatever, i have swept my house with my jean and skirts till i was swept off my feet by husband dear! How decent is the skirt and jean depends on individual's perceptions. I totally agree.

Women these days dress to kill, not cover up. It is not uncommon to see middle aged women flaunting muscles(?) in jeans and youngsters revealing calves. We in India have the freedom to dress as we like, but should we be the cynosure of all eyes in a mall? We can dress for convenience, not to get Neighbor's Envy, Owner's Pride! Covering up doesn't seem to be the priority now, the trendy fashion statements is the In Thing. Kollywood actresses and their fashion fundas, Bollywood fashionistas and their wardrobes have become our latest craze. Lechchumi of Attaiyampatti who weighs a good 100 kgs wants to be a la Kareena Kapoor. 100 kgs can never become a size zero. So what can poor Lechchumi do? Simple, wear a hipster and frighten away the poor cattle of Attaiyampatti! So much is our copy craze we forget we are setting bad examples to our children. We forget to think about other women who suffer in silence, who simply do not have the freedom to dress as they wish!

Iran's women soccer team is world renown. The girls have the same Gulf craze for football. And any idea how they dress up and play? All draped up, not a millimeter of their bodies exposed. Want to see a portrait of an average Saudi gang of girls? Here it is-

We seem preoccupied in attracting attention than feeling comfortable. Next time thinking of wearing that hipster and tank top, just think of the pictures above. There must be a dress code for every person- he/ she must herself design that code- The Code of Honor!