Thursday, December 23, 2010

Welcome to 'Airport Village'

Papa and I were at the airport yesterday evening, waiting for the Lady of the house to arrive.

Hunger pangs made me get down from the car in search of something to eat. We still had three quarters of an hour to kill and I was quite starved. I was looking for the sign board that would direct me to the food joints there. And this is what I saw:

“Welcome to Airport Village”. That’s what the green and white neon sign board said. I chuckled to myself. I was amused. Whatever gave them the idea to call the place a village? An airport it is, that I can see. But a village? Did I overlook something here?

So, instead of just idling away time lounging by the car, waiting for Mamma, I decide to take my magnifying glass out and observe the tell tale signs that render the airport, I am so fond of, a village.

I love the way the landscaping has been done at the airport. The array of vibrant flowers and trees. The Laqshya – advertisement boards, I just love the way they advertise themselves. “Watch your brand fly!” The long breaths of clean air and the long drive on a wonderfully maintained road and on the longest flyover of the country. It is exhilarating.

The airport in itself is another story. I had fallen in love with the way the airport when I had seen it first, for the way it has been designed. Chic. Utilitarian. The cleanliness maintained. I think it would make Howard Roark weak in the knees if he were to see the simplicity of the design and the convenience of it. A building entirely made of glass. It looks beautiful, especially at night. It gives you the feeling of having come somewhere else, abroad. Doesn’t seem like the place belongs to India, to Hyderabad.

So, if it’s the lush green trees and sprawling lawns and the fresh air that reminds you closely of a village with spawning fields and shady trees and a cool breeze, then call it a village if you wish to.

But I can’t say that my first impression has been an everlasting one. Its changing bit by bit with time. I have driven to the airport at all kinds of times. Driven down at midnight, at early hours of the dawn, at 12 in the noon, in the rush hours of the day and the dusk both. So technically, I have seen the airport in all its grandeur, at all times. Having gone to see my friends off, on journeys abroad, I have been at the airport at some unearthly hours of the day, or rather the night.

I have found myself surprised to see beggars and laborers occupying the benches there, sitting and admiring the magnificent structure. There have been times when I have seen these men spend the night out on the pavements, spreading their sheets and making their beds under the starry sky. But all that was long back, back when the airport was still under construction. And I thought that the poor people find it difficult to commute there and have that’s why probably set up their lodgings just there, till the construction is complete.

Now, a little more than 2 years since, I still see beggars begging for alms near the arrival and departure drop/pick-up points. Auto-stands, bus-stops, railway stations. It is common for beggars to throng these places. But AIRPORTS? What in the world are beggars doing at a place situated a good 25-30 kms off from the city? Or is it that they still spend their nights sleeping on the benches there? Makes up for a decent home, if you ask me! :X

The escalators are another thing that caught my attention. They moved at the pace of a bullock cart. It would not have taken me more than half a minute to go down by the stairs, whereas it took me twice the time to go by the elevator. People walking up and down the escalator rather than riding it is a pet peeve to me. And yesterday, I found myself just in the perfect situation to do it.

A village it is really turning to, in the sense that it is becoming more rural than urban! Let us just bring in a few cattle and let them graze the lawns there, use a ‘phatak’ instead of the toll booths and a proper village it will be! :-|

P.S: My spirits are high because Mamma is back. But, I really can’t see my beloved airport turning out to be village. It’s the one place in the city that I like to brag about. :D

ODC Rants

Two weeks in the ODC has taught me this much:

1) You are a pain in everybody’s neck till your ID is active. You have to keep pestering somebody or the other to door-keep for you!

2) It is best not to stray outside the ODC till your card is active, because you will have to keep filling in plenty of columns in a log register every time you either come in or go out. Stay put till your card is active.

3) The ODC is in the oldest building of the campus. And the lift sounds like a lift from some jail. It is all rickety. You will find the stair-way a better option.

4) The washroom here is way too small as compared to the new buildings. And the number of people in the ODC are much more than in the other building. Thus, never hold on till the last minute. Go and relieve yourself when you first start feeling the pressure. Going at a time when you are literally jumping like a kangaroo, ahem, because of the urgency of the call, you will find all the stalls occupied, and with people who have gone for long visits in there. Minimum waiting time = 5 mins.

5) Drink very little water, ensuring that you have to visit the loo less frequently.

6) Using the pantry sink is a better option than using the washroom’s basin. There is only one basin in there and too many people hovering around it, it being the ladies room.

7) Do all the net surfing that you want to, but with your window minimized to that extent that only you can see it. Remember, you are new in here. And you are supposed to work. Or at least pretend to.

8) The ODC is a place for fun and enjoyment. So if you want to work really seriously, and not be disturbed by people around you, plug in the headphones to cut out the noise.

9) The ODC is not a safe place to leave your coffee-mugs around. My Roadies-jumbo-coffee-mug has been snitched! :(

10) The first week in there can be really boring because you wont find the communicator or the blogs there, the two things that you get addicted to when on bench. :)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

What should I buy?

“Why did you buy this? How much did you buy this for? Oh! You spent much more than you should have.”

“I don’t have anything of this colour. What will I wear this with?”

“You know what? My sister’s friend gifted her the same type of pendant on her birthday. Couldn’t you come up with something original? Copy-cat!”

“I already have this.”

Guys really have a tough time keeping track of the countless accessories that girls own. Same goes for clothes. Poor guys! They might have never seen her in a particular dress because she still hasn’t come to that stack of clothes in her cupboard. She is still to finish the other stack. Mind you, she hasn’t repeated anything from there yet. And there is always the option of wearing something from her mom’s or sister’s cupboard. :-|

“You should have got me something of your choice. What was the point of buying me something that I like.”

*Shouldn’t you be happy I gave you something that you like? No. That’s not how things work. Buy something of your choice that I may like.*

“XYZ (her friend) already has this. I cannot own the same thing as she does.”

No girl likes to own the same stuff that other girls do. Yes, it is a rule.

You actually undergo the trouble to exchange it for something else, hoping that this is something that her friend doesn’t own. And…

“Hmm.. This is nice, but I liked the previous one better. This isn’t as good as that.” *a forced, tight smile*

The list of these kind of (agonizing) dialogues is quite endless says my (guy) friend. According to him, it is very difficult to buy a gift for a girl. It is too much of a hassle. This is how the process goes:

1. Shortlist a couple of things that you can gift her.
2. Fix a budget.
3. Do a thorough survey of the shortlisted items.
4. Re-think the budget. Anything that you fix your mind on, will turn out to be more expensive than you had bargained for.
5. One gift never suffices. There has to be something more than a single gift. Backup options. If not this, that. You hope that she will like at least one of the things that you bought, without complaining.
6. Ask your mom, sis or girl pal to accompany you along. You need somebody to try on the stuff that you are planning to buy.
7. Call up as many friends of the girl and find out whether she will like the gift or not.
8. Cross your fingers and hope that she will like the gift. Or be prepared to repeat from step 1 to 8. ;D

Some guys are just smart. They simply take the girl out shopping and let her choose what she wants for herself, and pay for it. Mind you, it can turn out to be an expensive affair, because most girls are shopaholics and guys wanting to stay in their good books would never ever let it out that the budget is fixed or that the number of items she is allowed to pick is limited. There goes your money worth 3 months of partying, boozing and biking. Abstinence, here he comes!

Well, what are guy pals for! You can always borrow. Try telling them that you donated the money or spent it on a medical emergency and you will return empty handed after hearing lame excuses. But, if you tell them the truth, that you overspent it on a gift (or rather gifts) for a girl, they would sympathize with you and believe your story without much ado. :P

The other side of the story…. Selecting a gift for a guy.

1. Select something that you like. Anything.
2. Check if the colour will suit your friend.
3. Check for size.
4. Gift it. Get a hug back with a big smile and a thank you.
5. Also, get a party free, free, free! :D :P

All of the above is, as told to me by a guy, from a guy’s perspective. I haven’t put in my two cents because I, as a girl, find the task of buying a gift for a guy equally challenging.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Blues of ‘Pinks’ !!

Tears roll down my eyes, even as she tells me to hold on tight. She patiently positions my hands in place and tells me to firm my grip as she does her job.

I tell the lady its my first time. I plead, to myself, to her, to anybody who would listen, I don’t want to do it. She pushes me down on that chair. They are going to need chains/belts to hold me down there, like in an electrocuting chair. She laughs at my plight, at my innocence, my immaturity.

I can feel the thread sawing at my skin. Out comes one hair at a time, plucked from its follicle as she moves that white thread to and fro. I clutch my sandals hard with my toes to prevent myself from kicking out. I try to immitate a body stuck with rigor mortis, not wanting to look like a person undergoing torture. The girls waiting for their turn in the queue think i am being a sissy and making a fuss out of nothing at all.

Why did I ever sign up for this? My brow is red and swollen. I come out from the execution room and walk back quickly, retracing my steps to the desk. I make it a point to look at the ground instead of looking ahead, pulling down the hood of my jacket and hoping not to bump into anybody i know. I decide i wont respond even if somebody calls out to me. I will pretend to have not heard. I dont want people looking at my face just yet, trying to figure out whats gone wrong there.

I swear I am not moving out of my cubicle for a couple of days, till it grows back. No going around, greeting people early in the morning. I may chance a trip out of my cube sometime close to noon when people are glued to their screens and wouldnt look up from it to acknowledge your presence.

I had once sworn that I would never get my eyebrows plucked until and unless a special occasion calls for it. I dont know how this qualifies as a special occasion, but I was coaxed into it…. So much for a Fashion Show. Sigh!

P.S: A round of applause to all those ladies out there who get it done once in a fortnight without batting an eyelid. They say its cake-walk.

P.P.S: 'Pinks and Blues' is the name of the beauty salon in my office!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Once upon a time, in the same land as now, being camera conscious was different from being image conscious. The camera conscious people were those who found it difficult to stand in front of the lens and get their picture taken. The image conscious people were those who were careful about the impression they made on people around them, by the way they spoke, behaved and dressed.

These days, the difference is reducing . People make their images and impressions by how they present themselves on social-networking sites. All the pictures that they put up, add up to the image they are trying to create. The whole purpose of clicking pictures is to put them up for others to see and comment upon, not for memories.
You wouldn’t be even back home yet from a social do, but your photos would have preceded you. The whole wide world would know where you went, what you did, what you wore, whom you met and blah blah blah!

It’s a trend amongst the teenagers to change their profile picture at least once a week. A display image that sticks on your wall for more than a week implies that you are not the ‘in’ thing. Hence the madness to carry the camera everywhere you go.
For what reasons would you carry a camera to a movie theatre? You aren’t going to shoot the film in it. But, nah! The camera has to go to the mall with you. You must pose in front of the life-size posters and banners in the malls. Maybe even pretend to kiss or hold your favorite actor’s poster… the photograph is proof that you have been there and done that.

Sometimes, by chance, you bump into somebody you knew long back. Voila! The camera or the phone is out, even before you can manage a decent hello and find out their whereabouts. The spark from the relationship would have died down and you might just be formal acquaintances now. But, still a pic is taken with a fake smile that stretches across your face, to show people how you close you are to your oldest friends. Up it goes with a fashioned status message…

It is funny how people are paranoid, that others will forget them until and unless they are constantly reminded of how they look!

1) I got a new dress – yay! Get the cam out. Let my friends see how pretty I look.

2) I washed my hair today – it looks nice, silky and shiny. See how it falls perfectly in place. Get the cam, I will pose.

3) Look I tried this brand of makeup today – Click. Click. Click.

4) Oh! I ate a burger today. The last time I ate it, was on the roadside stall yesterday and I didn’t have my cam. Today I am at McD. - Ronald and me in the frame please!

5) I am carrying my shades today. See how cool they look. - It doesn’t matter that its 6 pm and the sun has set. Zoom. Click.

6) This is the craziest thing I ever did till date. Ate a pizza with my hands and the ketchup is all over my face. - Somebody capture this moment. This day will never come again!


There are people who keep taking re-shots till they think they look perfect in the pic. All thanks to the era of digital cameras!

Also there are people who have defined smiles for all kinds of moods and occasions. They practice for hours in front of the mirror to see which kind of a smile looks the best. The smile must be perfect. Everything from how wide should you stretch your lips, how many teeth to be displayed, whether the mouth should be open or closed, whether your eyes hold the correct expression or not, or whether your cheeks look too full like you have ‘rasgullas’ stuffed inside… it is all manipulated.

I wonder if there is anything like a natural smile or a natural photo anymore!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Phone(y) Conversations

I don’t eavesdrop as a habit, but sometimes you just can’t help overhearing conversations.

It is funny how people (especially the ones in a relationship) can be classified into different categories based on the way they talk on the phone.

The loudspeakers:

There are some people who converse like it is a necessity for the whole wide world to know about what is happening in their life. You can hear these people’s conversations at the other end of the corridor. And every single word out of their mouth is at the mercy of your judgment. It is free publicity of their affairs!!

5000 watts Loudspeaker: “Tumne mujhe kabhi kuch diya hai? Mere liye kabhi koi gift bheji?”

Everybody around that girl knew that she was on the verge of breaking up with her boyfriend. Also any guys trying to get into a relationship with her were warned of her high-maintenance attitude!

The secretaries:


There are few people who have inbuilt mechanisms that would make them good secretaries. They literally get into the phones and talk. They lower their volume to such decibels that you cannot hear a single word even if you are sitting right next to them. Wonder how the person at the other end of the line catches what they are saying!

The teenage-girl types:

The people in this category love to show off what their conversation is probably like. You get to see very animated expressions even though you may or may not be able to hear what they are saying. And that more or less conveys to you, whom are they talking with and what they are talking about.

Very-girly-girl : *turns a soft shade of red*
“I thought you would like it if I wore that”
“You are very naughty…”
*turns crimson red*

Umm… the rest is left to your imagination!!

The screechy house-elves:

This category is applicable only to women. Women who turn hysterical on the phone, screech, scream and abuse on the phone, and more-often-than-not break into tears while talking can be fit into this category. The phone call that might have started at a normal pitch, threatens to do permanent damage to your tympanic membrane.

The switch-gears types:

This is the category of those people who change the language of communication, as soon as they find other people within earshot.

I know a friend, who suddenly makes a switch from Hindi (her mother tongue) to English while talking to her boy-friend, if any of us are within hearing distance. Her trick may work at her home, going by the fact that her mom doesn’t understand English. But, with us, it is just plain stupidity! Most people, like me, can understand both Hindi and English. (And if she tried talking to her boyfriend in his mother-tongue, I would still understand.) So, either which ways, I can always follow the entire conversation. Try how much ever I may, I can never block out her voice, given to the high pitch, and end up knowing all the stuff that she is trying so hard to block away!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Typically Shivani(sh)

I think I can sleep in/on anything that has wheels and is moving. The number of wheels the vehicle has, doesn’t seem to bother me. I have fallen asleep within minutes on a bike, in a car, in auto-rickshaws and buses all the same. I think I could fall asleep even on a bicycle, if I ever tried taking the pillion seat on one.

Why am I writing all this?

November 10, 2010. I fell asleep in the bus I had taken to get back home from office. It wasn’t my regular bus (which I obviously did not know when I got in) and this is what happened:

I was asleep even before the bus reached the Gachibowli flyover, which is at a distance of just 5-7 mins from the office. I could blame it all on my cold (it is supposed to make you feel dull and drowsy), but I won’t, because my track record would prove otherwise.

Not sure of how much time I spent sleeping, but when I woke up I realized that I was in some other part of the city, in a direction that I have never travelled before. I had taken the wrong bus home and I didn’t know where I was going.

“Excuse me.. Excuse me”. It was four times before the girl sitting next to me realized I was trying to talk to her. My voice, which wasn’t any louder than a hoarse whisper, fell on deaf ears till I literally waved my hands in front of her.

“Err… where exactly are we? And where is this bus going?”

“We are approaching Krishna-Nagar”, she said giving me a ‘are-you-drunk’ look.

*little voice in my head, panic mode* “Where in the world is that? How am I going to get home here?”

I was lost. Unsure of what to do and where to go, I asked another girl who helped me recognize an area where I could get down and go home from. God bless her!

Another time, another place:

On my way back from the township swimming pool, I got into the wrong bus. This time I had read the bus number, only the number, not the letter following it. Wrong bus, wrong route = a tour of the entire city. The bus conductor and driver were having a gala time, laughing at my expense. I had proudly proclaimed that I will get down where I want to, after paying the fare for the entire journey to and fro because I didn’t know where I wanted to get down, when the bus had started a return journey!

Yet another incident, this time in the car:

Mamma had gone to get a couple of things from the store. I was sitting in the car and waiting for her. I drowsed off with all the windows open and the keys in the ignition, even after I had been asked to take care. I woke up only when mamma got back. Thank God for my sharp senses that I opened my eyes quickly and was able to fib that I was only resting my eyes. Otherwise I would have got a good dose of her scolding that day, (what with her purse and everything lying inside the car.)

Maybe Khumbhkaran was an ancestor of mine...

P.S: Next time I intend to get lost only when I have a map with me. :P

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Auto-cracy ( Aristrocracy of auto-wallahs)

Time and again people keep cribbing about how the auto-wallahs cheat them and how they swindle them.

Every single time we are ready to get cheated because we have to reach somewhere in time, or there are no other travel options. Whatever the case be, the auto-wallahs generally get the better of us. Once in a while I find the occasion and the time to set these auto-wallahs right. A little bit of crankiness is all it requires.

This Diwali, trying to get an auto back home from a friend’s place.

Auto-wallah 1 : Kahan jaana hai madam?
Auto-wallah 1: Rs. 120
Me: Theek hai bhaiya. Bas raste mein jo police station aata hai, vahan se hote hue chaliyega.
Auto-wallah 1: Police station? Kaunsa wala madam? (he still hadn’t got the point yet)
Me: Jo aapko pasand ho. Aapki hi report likhvane jaana hai.
Auto-wallah 1: @#@$$$%$. Kya samajhte ho apne aap ko. Raste mein khade ho kar auto-wale ko darate ho.
Me: Aap kya samajhte ho apne aap ko. Diwali k din logon ko thug-te ho.

Auto-wallah 2: Kidhar jaana hai?
Auto-wallah 2: Rs.150
Me: Kitna? 150? Aage jao bhaiya.
Auto-wallah 2: Kitna denge madam aap?
Me: Rs.40. Utna hi hota hai meter se.
Auto-wallah 2: Par madam aaj Diwali hai.
Me: To kya hua? Kaunsa aap havai-jahaz mein bitha kar le jaa rahein hain?
Auto-wallah 2: Arey madam, jo hai ussi mein bitha kar le jaunga na. Kitne log hain? (there were 5 of us there)
R (my friend) : Kyun bhaiya? 1 ho ya 4 ho, kya farak padta hai? Sabki alag alag Diwali lenge kya aap?
S (another friend) : Bhaiya phir to Diwali offer bhi lagao. Sabko kam-se-kam 15% discount bhi dena.

Everybody inclusive of the auto-wallah burst out laughing.
He settled down on an additional baksheesh of Rs.10 to the meter.

There are a few auto-wallahs who would answer back in the same cranky rhythm that you set.

Auto-wallah 3: Itna hoga madam
Me: kyun bhaiya? Aaj aapka janamdin hai?
Auto-wallah 3: Janam-din samajh k hi de diji-ega

This was one time I was stumped. Could not think of a proper reply to throw back at his gloating face!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Of Sizes and Shapes

120 pounds, 65 inches, size 6… In this new era of washboard abs and size zero - incense stick figures, I sound like a heavy-weight champion :O Maybe I should compete for the world’s fattest woman. That’s how I feel even with only 4 sizes smaller and 17 bigger sizes categorized in the size chart.

All throughout my years of adolescence I kept worrying about the baby fat I had. Looking back at pics of that time, I classify myself as a baby-elephant, at least going by my current stats.

Another 1-2 kgs shed, and my insides will be sticking to each other, there will be no space for the food through pass through. I will disappear into nothing-ness. I am beginning to remind myself of those cartoons, where a vehicle tramples you and you go flat, waiting to be inflated with air to get back into shape.

I am soon going to get myself a personal - no not trainer, a personal tailor to stop making my dresses look like gunny bags. I am not going to be able to shop for branded clothes anymore. They sell only size 8 and above in India for adults :-/ And I don’t fit into clothes meant for the kiddos and teeny-weenies. I feel like I am grotesquely deformed.

I kind of miss the fat I had. At least it was easier to sit. My bones didn’t hurt me back then. Long back I used to look in envy at women with curves at the right places. I still envy them. Wrong or right, I had curves back then. Now I just fit into the category of “column” amongst the 12 body types that exist? Straight parallel lines, no curves.

Did I say ‘Shapes’ in the title? Sorry. Erase that. Straight lines aren’t considered as shapes.

Where has the era of shapely women gone? Where have all my lipids dissolved? Why has the day dawned where I am cribbing about my stats and my shape (as usual) and still wondering if it is worth losing another few pounds…

P.S: I haven’t given up eating on anything yummy like chocolates, ice-creams or doughnuts!!

P.P.S: There was a time when a small bell would ring in my head if I indulged too much. I can’t hear the bell anymore 

P.P.P.S: Hoping to return all round and cherubic after Diwali.

The last P.S : Initially this blog was supposed to be a blog telling people to ditch the size zero idea. It’s come to this because I don’t find myself eligible for it anymore.

The Greedy Algorithm

Willy was leaving for the US. It was her last day in the city, and I had gone to help her with her packing. Her grandmother is a renowned astrologer, and though I don’t believe in palmistry, I like to get my palm read by her. It’s fun. No two people who have read my palm have ever predicted the same future for me. In fact, even Willy's grandmother’s prediction has had variations with the years that have gone by. Anyway..

That day she told me that I was destined for a love-marriage. She went further and wished me good luck for finding the man of my dreams and also said that she could trust my choice. It gave me a warm feeling to know that a lady who is close to 80 had enough faith to trust the choice of a 20 something girl. People at that kind of age generally go, err, a little off the track and they don’t trust you to anything.

Willy : Paatti, you trust Shivani with her choice, but if the matter of a love-marriage came to me, you would have so many issues about it.

Granny: No, my dear. We wouldn’t mind…

Willy : (cutting Granny off, mid-sentence) Oh, ya? Then why this long list of the things-i-shouldn’t-do?

Granny: (finishing off her sentence) we wouldn’t mind as long as the guy is a Thanjavur Vadamaaal Iyengar. That’s the only condition we have.

THE ONLY CONDITION as explained to me turned out to be this:

Thanjavur is the place where their family comes from.
Iyengar is the caste
And Vadamaal is the sub-caste.

My question here is what makes parents closed to the idea of their kids falling in love? Why is it OK as far as it isn’t your child?

Observation says that the parent’s idea of a perfect bride/groom for their progeny is a person who is from the same caste, culture. A guy whose family is probably related to you in some way (read - a family your family can keep a tab on, a family whose private matters are public to you).

They say, “It will be very difficult for you to fit into their culture. It’s different from ours.” Were we all brought up following a rulebook of what our culture is or what is permissible in it? Were we brought up with such rigidity that we cannot adapt to a few additions to the rites and rituals that we learnt?

Does it really matter if you don’t know what happened to the Paternal Aunt's Son-in-Law's Sister's Grandfather's younger Brother's Wife's Paternal Uncle's Sister-in-Law's Grandson of the guy you are to get married to?

The guy in question has to be well settled. He should own a house and a car before he is married. Why? Am I marrying the guy or his possessions? Am I not earning enough to support myself, and even him if the need arises? Did our parents have everything before they were married? Did they not build up their own homes? Then why this notion of a person well-settled? Or is our generation not capable enough?

Oh! I almost forgot. The horoscopes. Why is it so important that all your 36 virtues have to match? Wouldn’t you be able to spend your life with a person who probably has only 24 planetary positions matching with yours?

And to think of it, all this has really not got anything to do with the person in question. Why do all these extra requisites become important than the person or his/her character or the kind of understanding that you share?

You may be in love with a person. But if all these conditions aren’t fulfilled, then you are doomed for life. You are going to be strung around somebody else’s neck. You may try and explain as much as you want about why the person you love is perfect for you but it won’t work. Parents are greedy when it comes to their kids. Everything has to be prefect for them. Nothing short of the best will do. Only that the kids don’t think of it as the best for them.

Your parents may not be asking for dowry, but if these become the major criteria for a marriage, then it sure fits the definition of what I call as the Greedy-Algorithm-of-Matchmaking.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Back to where i belong...

Thanks to a friend, who helped me put my ideas into the right words in the form of a poem...

Here I am now wondering why
Typing away memories and days gone by
Talking about myself to someone unseen
And about life as it had been

He asks if I have made many friends who matter
And I tell him we gel as well as oil and water
It took a very long time to make them see
The difference between what I am and what they thought me to be

Breaking the stereotype of a delicate darling
Forever dependent on men for their caring
For support and solace I look to myself
I have made them aware what it is to help oneself

Great pleasure it gave me to beat them at their game
Or to talk in a crisp tongue all the same
To break the myth that in their world they were rulers
Or that I could race when they were thumb-twiddling losers

It hurt them to know that I was better with my mind
And could code and think very much like a guy
Not literally, don’t mistake me; I am a girl with focus
What you see is what you get, There is no hocus-pocus

Here I am now wondering why
Typing away memories and days gone by
Talking about myself to someone unseen
And about life as it had been

About the life that changed from the closed, narrow minded one before
When I wasn’t this shrewd or this ruthless or competitive to the core
About the time when I wasn’t a hypocrite, and mindful of my thoughts
I was innocent and naïve, never caring what I got.

There was a time when I could walk about in attires I desired
I was happy being the small-town girl, a mind neither muddled nor mired.
I hugged my nears and dears the way I wanted to all day
Without any airs and fancies or thoughts of what people would say

There was a time, a place where my friends wouldn’t judge me
Neither care about what I wore or how I talked about the life that I see
They were simply happy that I did well and started to rise higher
They wouldn’t hold me back or stifle my desires.

Now that I have left all that behind
Adapting to a new culture, a new facet of the mind.
This Barodian is now singing a Hyderabadi song,
Hoping that someday life takes me, back to where I truly belong.

Friday, October 15, 2010


Going late to office, travelling in 7-seaters and buses is a different kind of an experience altogether. I had one such experience yesterday, and it wasn’t a very comfortable one. No, I am not talking about the discomfort that such kind of a travel can cause where four people are trying to fit their fat bottoms on the same seat and you try shrinking yours to half the size to fit in the place or maybe just rest a single bum on the seat. That’s a different story. Here, I am talking of the kind of discomfort you feel when someone is making a show of their personal life right in front of you. PDA – Public Display of Affection.

There was a young couple sitting on the seat opposite mine. They were only holding hands when they got in, which was pretty OK by me because they were a couple. But soon after they got in, the guy started giving a shoulder massage to the girl. What was this, a mobile-spa? That was followed by the poking – tickling – finger-walking on her hands routine. Here the girl was blushing and egging the guy on. And it was me who was feeling embarrassed looking at them.I didn’t have anywhere else to look (bad positioning). I kept giving them disgusted looks, hoping they would get the hint. Alas! They couldn’t have and it took me a long time to figure out why, tube-light that I am. I had my scarf over my face, bandit style…

I recollect another time when I accidentally walked into somebody’s “love-scene”. I love walking, that’s the form of exercise that i enjoy the most and I usually go to parks for that. Its awkward when people get their bedroom stories out in the open. And its not like Hyderabad is as crowded as Mumbai where people cannot find privacy even within the four walls of their bedroom. The couple would have been beaten to death had some specific moral policing activists caught them. Under the tree, buttons of the shirt askew, the girls hand quite close to the belt buckle, maybe a little lower… cant say much about the girl though. She and the guy’s hands were in the burkha and her face wasn’t visible either because they were in a lip-lock. The moment I passed by the girl pulled her burkha down. Perfect protection against recognition, I say! I could have sworn.

Why cant people keep their hands to themselves in public places. Your hands don’t have to be all over somebody else. Why not take your love and passion inside the bedroom? Why embarrass yourself and others? Why?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The perfect recipe for disasters...

My fight today with N and N for the silliest reason in the world has put me down the dumps. As an afterthought I find it funny how the little things can make or break/take away your day. I wonder if these kind of things happen with other people too or is it just me and my wild mood swings. My friend says I brew the most perfect recipes for disasters from the smallest of things.

Situation 1: I come back from work, tired and hungry.Mom has had a rough day too.

Me: What is for dinner mom?
Mom: Pumpkin
Me: Again? (Looking thunder-stuck, gaping with my mouth open.)
Mom: I haven’t had the time to go to the market. And I made daal for you.
Me: So you made pumpkin? You know I hate it. (I choose to ignore the other half of the statement)
Me: You just make what N likes. You pamper her so much. Nobody cares about me. (N happens to be my younger sister.)

Lo! I go sulking for no ‘bright’ reason.

Situation 2: it’s a lovely sunny morning. Makes me feel cheerful. I decide to dress up in accordance to my mood. I dig into my cupboard. I try on a few clothes, unable to decide which looks good. Basically I don’t like any of those. So I go to my sister’s cupboard. Turn it inside out. Make a mess of it and finally settle down on something. And like it happens with all sisters, she wants to wear just the same dress that I pick out on that particular day. There is nothing that I can say because it’s hers, not mine.

Lo behold! I get irritated and throw a major tantrum about not owning any good clothes and feel like a peasant for the day even after dressing up in my best.

Situation 3: You are busy and are concentrating on a task at hand.
At the same time a friend calls you. You tell him you are busy and will call later. He accuses you of being busy always and never having the time for friends. You get a little irritated by the statement, but hang on. He starts off politely by asking your whereabouts and how have you been and about the work and what else have you been doing lately. You answer courteously but in short sentences, wishing hard that he would put the phone down. You try cutting in through his sentences, not wanting to listen to what he is saying. Basically you aren’t really interested. Especially not right now.

I for one generally tell the person at the other end that I am not in a mood to talk and will call later on my own accord when I feel like talking. Wonder how some people don’t get the message even when it is so loud and clear. They keep questioning you, probing your personal life.

Lo! I get angry, and no matter how hard I try, I end up furious. That is when my bluntness takes over. I am not responsible for what I say after this. You are getting only what you asked for.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


“What do you think, nothing hurts me?” , he said.

The only line he could come out with for a long time. Everything else was lost behind the tears he was trying hard to control. He closed his eyes, wishing, for that one moment, that she would disappear, cease to exist, and so would his world

She was in a fit of rage, and it wasn’t entirely her fault. For some things, she had reason to blame. Some of it was probably just the negative feelings that had been bottled up within her. They hadn’t had their share of quality time together for a long time now. And both of them were beginning to complain, one vocally, throwing tantrums and the other in silence.

All the reasons that had got her to shouting out loud, hurt him too, and so did her words. He felt shattered. The relationship that they had so lovingly built seemed to be crumbling. She had said she did not feel loved anymore. And that’s what pricked, stabbed at his heart. That’s where the dam broke. How was he to tell her that he was mad about her? That nothing apart from her mattered. That all that he did was for her. And that she was the constant thought in his mind, day in and day out.

She had shouted till she couldn’t have gone further. She had broken down too and begged for forgiveness. His pain reflected in her eyes. He could see that she was repenting.

He had asked himself one simple question when she was done shouting at him. Did he still love her? The answer had come to him instantly. Yes. Did she deserve to be punished? Maybe. But he wouldn’t. He knew they could work it out. All that it needed was a little bit of time, patience and understanding.

Looking out from the balcony, his thoughts were only about her and how he could make up for what they had lost. He had promised her his entire life. And he was going to keep the promise. Nothing, nothing could make him think otherwise.


Sitting in that dark corner of her room, she thought about the day when she had first met him. The argument they had back then had united them though they were fighting with each other. And there was today’s argument. They were fighting for the same cause, their grounds were the same and so was their battle. Yet, they were being torn apart. This time, the nature of the argument was personal. It wasn’t about their difference of opinion. What stood between them was the difficulty of being together, to be able to devote enough time to the relationship without having to compromise on their careers, which was taking them both to new heights with every passing day.

She had lashed out at him. Her words had dripped with acid and she inflicted wound upon wound on him. She had seethed with anger because she couldn’t see a solution to their problem, except for maybe giving up on their relationship. And that was the one thing that she wasn’t prepared for. She loved him. She was crazy about him. She knew she could find no other like him. Her words had whipped him till he had tears in his eyes. That is when the horror of her action stuck her. But it was too late. She had gone way ahead. There was no coming back.

She begged for forgiveness. She got it too. Such was the man. But she could not come to forgive herself. She had tarnished the beauty of the bond and she knew that the wound would never heal completely.

Here she sat, feeling lost and lonely, playing with a loose strand of hair, recollecting the times when she had laid her head in his lap and he ran his fingers through her curls… when their words and silence both had equal understanding.

Friday, October 1, 2010


“Hi! You look like a model. I am new to this place. Can you help me around?”

- Duh dude! If I were a model why would I help a commoner like you?

“You have got such a cute nose.”

- This guy definitely needed glasses. Whatever else might be cute about me, if there is, it is definitely not my nose.

My friend thinks that guy was a face surgeon. Get the drift?

“Hey! Seeing you after a long time. You still look the same. Nice DP”

- Well I still have my original nose, eyes, teeth and everything else so I guess I will look the same. And its not my age to get botox yet.

“Looking pretty!”

- Don’t I otherwise, you loser?

“Hey! How do you know this person? I am his friend. Can we be friends?”

- Whats that? A letter of recommendation for a job?

“I would like to know more about you.”

- Please go and read the ‘Who’s Who?’

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Bhaiya-ji smile please…..

Our team had our project – party yesterday and we watched ‘Dabangg’. Now, I don’t know if ‘watched’ is the correct word to be used. We saw less and commented more. The whole group of 16 people could be categorized as ‘yappy yarn-ers’, people who cant shut their traps all through the movie, a term coined by a friend. All of us, including me who was not really interested in watching the movie, in the first place, and had expected the movie to be a drag, found the movie to be one of the most comic movies we had seen.

You might have to probably watch the movie again to make note of all the hilarious scenes we found in the movie.

The movie was a brand ambassador to two things:

1. The pencil thin moustache that Salman Khan sported. This has been a much talked about look of his. Somehow, everybody, I noticed in the village of Laalgunj sported the same moustache. Maybe the village barber knew how to shape them only in one style :O Anybody wanting a mucchi like that, please go to Laalgunj’s only barber.

2. The Ray-Ban aviators. The hero, the villain, the son, the dad… everybody had them. Thankfully the heroines didn’t have them on :P

Sitting next to a person running a non-stop commentary can be so much fun. It was my lucky day.

The story is about two brothers who grow up with feelings of sibling-rivalry. The younger one is called Makkhi – kept reminding me of a fly ever time his name was mentioned. And the elder one (Salman Khan) is called Chulbul Pandey– which was just an out of character name for him.

The SK Dabangg look was much awaited when the promos had come, but I found SK to have grown a comfortable paunch rather than his fit self (except for the last fight scene) .

“Woh caller tune to forward karna…” SK doesn’t know the difference between a caller tune and a ring tone. Sallu baba, kisi ne bataya nahi aapko, caller tune bahar sunai nahi deti hai, jo sunai deti hai use ring tone kehte hain.

Dabangg Dabangg Dabangg…. (title song)

S: Lag raha hai Dabangg k meaning pe KT de raha hai.

S: Aur yeh kya hai. Apne aap ko Madhuri Dixit samajh raha hai kya? Ye step to chane-k-khet me vale gaane ka step hai.

And honestly, it did remind me of Madhuri Dixit’s dance step.

Another comical name was the villain’s name, Hol(e)y Singh, I mean Chedi Singh. Chedi Singh se mujhe yaad aaya… oh! chuck it… mein gande joke nahi sunati.

‘S’ happened to notice that we could send SK to the Olympics, he would straight-away win gold medals in long jump, shooting, javelin throw and shot-put. The action scenes in the movie defied all of Newton’s laws. And I think it’s time Rajnikanth realizes he has got competition.

Did nobody tell SK that he looks like a gorilla trying to walk broadening his shoulders, more than necessary? Mr. Gorilla walks down to the heroine, tries impressing her, and proposes her. She refuses to marry him till her father is alive. SK replies back saying, “hum babuji k parlok padharne ka intazaar karenge”, and the heroine smiles coyly. Tch tch tch… kaise din aa gaye hain…. (deliberately mis-interpreted :D)

Vicco turmeric, nahi cosmetic, vicco turmeric, ayurvedic cream. Kheel muhason ko jad se mitay, haldi aur chandan k gun isme samay, vicco turmeric ayurvedic cream.

Don’t look so confused. It’s the interval. Logon ko jo dete hain vo padhte hain. Vo bhi tune k sath. :P

Don’t ask me where our dirty minds went to when lines from the script came like: “Kuch karna hi nahi, to humka bulay hi kyun ho”… and “Istamaal hone ka invitation diya tha kya…” and when the song came… “Munni badnaam hui…”

I don’t remember the complete dialog… “Kamaal karte ho ladki k baapu….something something”. This was one of those dialogs that could give takkar to “Sunti ho munne ki mummy…..” Didn’t these people learn to talk in first person?

All throughout the movie I felt there was a missing factor, it was not a proper SK movie. And then I realized why. There was not a single bare-chested scene of his. Jitney aise scenes they voh to Sonu Sood k they.

Arey.. arey… I know picture abhi baaki hai mere dost.

The last scene. SK turns breaks through the floor and comes up like he has been launched from a rocket propeller. The regular dhishum-dhishum scenes follow… and then, the clothes that I had been thinking would tear since the movie started (they were way too tight in the first place) actually tore off. Now it’s Mr. Hulk’s time to show off his body. SK fans wouldn’t have been able to peel their eyes off.

Another new way of killing somebody was discovered by the movie industry – fill a person’s lungs with carbon monoxide and you are done (shayad SK ki hi koi purani movie me maine dekha tha k they burst somebody by filling that person’s body with water through a hose pipe….eeeewww)

Like a typical Hindi movie, there had to be a happy ending to it. And so it was.

P.S : Any people planning to go for project parties, please take this as a warning and don’t go to this movie with your seniors.

Mood: crazy
Music: Udd Udd Dabangg...

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Roomie woes...

Roomie woes…
Would guys rather have girls as roomies than guys?
I was having this chat with my guy friend who seems to be having a rough time with his roomie. His roomie as I deduce is in the courtship period of his relationship, which explains why the guy stays up late at night, giggling away to glory (happy and gay! Ahem!) Infact my friend is so bugged that he is seriously considering shifting his lodgings. I was counseling him, trying to give him suggestions as to how to manage with the situation, and that is where we got into discussing this:

K :Wonder why the people here are not open to guys and girls sharing apartments? What is wrong with that?
S :Ummm..because it is not very likely to stay as only an apartment sharing would eventually become a live-in relationship.
I went ahead to give him reasons as to why a girl as a room-mate wouldn’t be such a good idea. How much more would he have to put up with, if he had a girl-roomie…

- A few mood swings of hers, and you will find yourself playing agony aunt.
- You would get nagged for leaving your things lying around the house.
- You would find yourself at gun-point if you don’t leave the bathroom spotless
- She would scream if you would leave a wet towel or soiled clothes on the bed.
- The dressing table can have only her things. And you cant touch any of them without permission. Not even her comb.
- You cannot leave smelly socks in the shoes. (reminds me of a friend who used to store his used socks of the week in the iron safe provided by Infy, at mys.)
- Most importantly, you will lose the freedom of walking around in your underwear :P

He said he would gladly agree to all of the above. This surprised me, because I don’t think its all that easy to stay with a girl. What I am trying to say here is that, that every girl has a different disciplinary book and she follows it very religiously. And sometimes two girls cannot get along together just because they follow the same rules. And that is why a girl, if given a choice, would probably prefer to stay alone, rather than sharing a room.
Some girls are like me, paranoid about having a clean bathroom. Back in Mysore, I would always be the first one to get ready, even if that meant having to wake up at 5 in the morning, when it was my roomie who had the test, not me. But I could never get myself to use the bath after she had. I would have nightmares about it and wake up before she did.
Some can just not see anything out of place. They have this OCD of arranging and re-arranging things in their right places.
And with the kind of messy packages that guys make, I don’t think a girl would want to share a room with them. When our postings were due, my cousin used to keep telling me to try and get posted in Bangalore, so that we could stay together and I could cook for him. I used to dread that. I remember praying hard, not to be put up there. No, I don’t dread the cooking. What I dreaded was the number of hours that I would spend cleaning. Phew!
Anyways, I went ahead and took a poll after this discussion and
guys said:

Reasons why a guy would like to have a girl as a flat-mate (excluding the sexual possibilities, that is)?

- A clean house
- Food cooked at home
- The discipline that comes as a package with them (even though sometimes it is as strict as Hitler!)
- The emotional support that they can give when you are feeling low.

Though another friend’s probability calculation says

- 75% chances are that the relationship would not stop at just friends. Quite likely to get married!
- 80-85% chances that you would have atleast had a casual fling, which is more likely to arise when a girl goes into her emotionally unstable state.

And then I asked the girls:

- Girls make great buddies when it comes to hearing out your woes.
- They care for you and nurse you back to health when you are not well.
- They make good counselors for your relationships (gfs/bfs/parents/siblings… whichever)
- They will actually help you out with the chores around the house. And sometimes even do your bit.

Nobody seems to want guys as roomies, not girls, not guys…. Ladke sudhar jao :P

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Letting the cat out of the bag….

8: 43 – enter office gates
8: 55 – enter door with the ‘ladies’ signboard on it
9:00 – exit door

Every morning, before coming to my cubicle I take a detour to the ladies room. It’s routine.

There is this girl who is on the same floor as me…. poker straight hair, dusky complexion… a regular occupant, I have noticed. On a particular Bad-Hair-Day (mine, not hers, when it took me 10 mins to tame my wild tresses) I had noticed that she combed her hair for 8 mins by my watch. That’s pretty long for someone who could walk out of bed and come to office, without anybody having noticed a single hair out of place.

I call her the fashion queen of my floor. Just goes an extra step towards looking like the most artificial girl ever made. My judgment is that she spends more time in front of the mirror in the washroom than at her desk. How else is it possible for me to find her in there every time I escape to it?

I was watching her as I underwent the ordeal of tying up my hair neatly….

- Out came a bottle of some kind of a cream from her bag
- Then came out another one of it, a different brand though. I could tell that much from the bottles.
- And then she mixed them both n rubbed it into her skin making circles with her fingers…. my mental clock says, for 3 whole mins. Blink. Blink. I don’t see any difference in your skin. I was almost expecting it to change colour, like they show in the fairness cream ads.
- Dab. Dab. Dab. She dabbed a thin film of what I think is called a compact. (the powdery substance)

2 turns of my rubber-band and I am done. In goes the comb. I close my bag and am ready to escape the smell of her room-freshener. Oops! Perfume I mean.

Alas! My grand escape was foiled. I was in the washroom as quickly as I had left it. I managed to have a head-on collision with someone and now my shirt was soaking wet with coffee…. Eeeuuugghh!!

Dab. Dab. Dab. No… this time it was me…. Trying to wipe the coffee off my shirt with a tissue.

I notice, the damsel is still there, carefully penciling her black eyebrows with a brown pencil. My mind is running a constant commentary of her actions.

- Now, the brown pencil has been replaced with a maroon one. And she is outlining her lips with it.
- There she is, filling in the outlined lips with lip gloss / lip stick / lip balm… I cannot tell the difference.
She reminds me of how I used to colour up my drawings as a kid. What does she think she is? A colouring book?
- There is it, the kajal stick…. Phew! I recognized this one atleast. I was beginning to feel dumb, you know.
She is still digging in her magic bag of cosmetics when I am ready to leave the washroom.

I give her a last look as my mind screams - Freak. I find I have a spring in my step as I notice the dark clouds gathering, hoping it would rain all day or someone would pour a bucket on her and put those 20+ minutes of hard work down the drain…….. (evil grin)

Mood : devilish
Song : u belong with me (she wears high heels, I wear sneakers….) – taylor swift

The art of subtly staring....

Ever heard of the art of subtly staring??

I bet everyone at some point of time has stared at someone or the other, be it because the person looks like he/she just fell into the GAP (pun intended) or because the person in question looks ravishing. Reason being what-so-ever, I am sure you have had the sense to not ogle oh-so-openly at the person.

How many times have you and your friends sniggered and rolled your eyes in the direction of the guy who came dressed like a clown, or wore a green shirt and a pink tie to go with it (and that my dears, is not a fictitious combination. it’s for real, is what my trusted sources tell me). How about counting the number of times you just couldn’t peel your eyes off the pretty lady in a sari or the hot chick in a mini-skirt with those never ending legs?

The question in question is that did you do all of the above right in face of the person or had enough brains to do it behind their back? Did you let your eyes pop out like someone was strangling you or did you just pretend to glance casually?

If the answer is yes, then, why does my office seem to be filled with mundanely illiterate people (AOM*) who never learnt the art of subtly staring? I was wearing a skirt yesterday, which was a good 2" below my knees. And like all other people here who are freshly out of the training, stuck to the dress code rigidly which says - "stockings to be preferably worn with skirts". Did I do something wrong?

Thanks to all the people of the above mentioned category, I wasn’t able to step out of my cubicle all day without feeling conscious. You made me feel like a specimen under the microscope lens, looking so pointedly at my stocking clad feet. Have you never seen a girl before?? Or is that you don't know what stockings are?

For the guys - next time you decide to ogle at a girl, do it with more chivalry. staring with your eyes resembling a toad's is not classy. No girl likes being looked at like a piece of meat being eyed by a wolf.

For the girls who thought that my legs were fairer than the rest of my skin, I would like to bring to your kind notice, the existence of stockings. Please do not be so open about wishing to have legs like mine; else I will have to start carrying a board saying "I am straight!!” (rolling eyes)

And not to forget, special thanks to my cubicle mate Mr. B who did not make me feel even a wee bit uncomfortable inside the homeliness of my cubicle or even outside it for that matter.

AOM - All Offense Meant :x

I am royally pissed.......