February 28, 2005

Photo Not Available

I went looking for some stock photos for work today. I needed close-ups of business people, with various face expressions. The scenario was basically:

A: Your performance is not up to the mark. You’d better do something
B: But I thought I was doing well
A: You are not. This is serious.
B Ok Boss!

So I searched for Executive/Corporate/Face/Portrait/Closeup on various photo sites, and here are my conclusions:

1. Executives are the bonded slaves of technology. Pictures of offices have people peering into their monitors, talking into their cellphones, or peering into their cellphones while talking into their monitors. If I use these, I’ll have to modify my scene:
A: (on the phone) Hey B! You’re about to be fired!
B: (on phone) No kidding! I quit already!
A: When?
B: Last year!
A: What? I’ve been making your reports for a year! You’ve been doing better than three other chaps!
B: What software do you use?
A: Hey B! How come you still have the official phone connection?
B: I work for the phone company now!
A: No kidding! Do they have an opening?

2. Most women executives are also whores. If they wear that short red dress to work everyday and sit like that on the chair, I am sure all the chaps in their office want to work under them. Enough said.
A: Err, Ms B. There is a problem.
B: (Languishing in her chair) What is the problem, honey bun?
A: You are about to be sacked for your poor performance.
B: Ahaan? I thought talking about poor performance was a taboo (wink wink)
A: To hell with it! I’ll make up your sales figures. What are you doing tonight?

3. Looking for group pictures is not helpful either. People are wither walking Ocean’s Eleven-style down the road:
A: Hey B. You’re about to be fired.
B: Let’s rob three casinos owned by the bastard who stole my wife
A: Ok. I’ll put in my papers tomorrow.
Or they are making out in official suits! What kind of conversation do I make them have when their tongues are down each other’s throats?
A: (Thinking) Why the hell would I tell him he’s being sacked?
B: (Thinking) If this can keep me from being sacked…

4. There are always the funnies. People with Post-its all over their clothes, or paper clips on their noses, hitting their heads against monitors.
A: Err, B. You finished the staple supply of the entire office making yourself a new suit. You will be fired.
B: I can’t hear you. I got superglue in my ears.

So basically, I will have to get my graphic designer to make sketches and charge my client for his time.
Or maybe we can change the scenario: Let A and B have a costume party after which they can stick their tongues down each other’s throats. The sacking can wait.

February 27, 2005

Yeh Shaadi Nahin Ho Sakti

The banquet hall close to office (and home) has been overactive these last few days. Grooms and brides have been enthusiastically sacrificing themselves at the altar of marriage. They are accompanied by a band that belts out the same Hindi film songs day after day.

The band’s two favorites are “Dhoom Dhoom” (Or “Doom Doom” as Papun Dada likes to call it) and “Mungda Mungda” (note the love of repeated words). We have the honor of listening to these songs played out live from morning to evening, day after day.

This routine was rudely interrupted yesterday, when the band started playing, and singing, a third song. And not just any song. This song:

Ae maalik tere bande hum
Aise hon hamaare karam
Neki par chalein
Aur badi se talein
Taaki hanste hue nikle dum

Hats, and wigs, off to the chap who saw the relevance of chanting this prayer during the groom’s journey to the wedding hall.

Bada kamzor hai aadmi
Abhi laakhon hai isme kamee

Ahaan! I almost choked on my breakfast!

Yeh andhera ghana chha raha
Tera insaan ghabra raha
Ho raha bekhabar
Kuchh na aata nazar
Sukh ka sooraj chhupa ja raha

The poor guy’s daddy must have held a gun to his head to make him marry the girl. I felt like going downstairs, kicking the reluctant groom off the white mare, and staring into his daddy’s rifle, screaming “Run Forrest Run!”

February 26, 2005


Filmfare awards tonight. What emotional torture I have gone through on these evenings in the past. I cried myself to sleep when Aamir Khan did not win for Jo Jeeta Wahi Sikandar and for countless other movies. Stayed up till 3am only to be disappointed again.

This time, I want to shout this statement from the rooftops:
Someone Please Give Shah Rukh Khan the Best Newcomer Award for Swades.

Soon after I hit the Post button, I shall pack my bags and disappear to an undisclosed destination to avoid being ruthlessly murdered by SRK fans.

February 25, 2005

Working With My Headphones On :o)

Note to designer: change text color to gray
Ae ajnabi tu bhi kabhi aawaaz de kain se
We will be uploading the images soon
Main yahan tukdon mein jee raha hoon

Select your answer and click Next to continue
Tu hi re, Tu hi re, tere bina main kaise jiyun?
Drag the appropriate number into the second row
Aaja re, aaja re, yunhi tadpa na tu mujhko

February 24, 2005


All ye who lurve the new template, chugs is extending an offer to ye to have your blog redesigned.

So long as your title and writing inspires him with an idea (not tough, trust me, since all he have in head is strange ideas), he’ll do it!

Being a complit loonatick, he’s doing it for free.

However, I am charging 175 rupiss if you get your blog designed, because that is the sum he owes me, and if he’s never going to earn, then how he’s going to repay?

Pliss to avail of 22 carat gold plated opportunity here.

And harass him a lot, so that I am not alone in the bitch-of-a-client category.

February 23, 2005

By Emily Dickinson

If you were coming in the fall,
I ’d brush the summer by
With half a smile and half a spurn,
As housewives do a fly.

If I could see you in a year,
I ’d wind the months in balls,
And put them each in separate drawers,
Until their time befalls.

If only centuries delayed,
I ’d count them on my hand,
Subtracting till my fingers dropped
Into Van Diemen’s land.

If certain, when this life was out,
That yours and mine should be,
I ’d toss it yonder like a rind,
And taste eternity.

But now, all ignorant of the length
Of time’s uncertain wing,
It goads me, like the goblin bee,
That will not state its sting.

Who'd dare write poetry under the shadow of something like this?

February 22, 2005

Ups and Downs

Four months in an elevator-obsessed city qualify as sufficient experience for writing a post on elevator etiquette. So here goes:

1. The tiny button outside the elevator is meant for pressing repeatedly. Its main purpose is not to invoke the elevator’s spirit to come visit you, but to give you a cool temporary thumb tattoo in this shape: <>

2. The elevator has two doors: the inside door and the outside door. The elevator will stop in its tracks if someone opens the outside door on any floor. Therefore, when you are standing near the elevator door with nothing to do, you can pass time by repeatedly opening and shutting the door. People in the elevator will have the time of their lives, and their lunch will get the opportunity to say hello to their breakfast in their intestines.

3. When you get off the elevator, you open both the doors yourself. However, since your ass is so obviously on fire and the fire extinguisher is so obviously on this very floor, you do not need to close the door behind you. The crazy woman holding two encyclopaedias in her arms can do it easily, and continue her upward or downward journey. After all, she wears her chaddi over her pants.

4. If any of the doors of the elevator are open, the elevator sings a song. Not in the nightingale kind of way, but in the tonsillitis-affected jackal kind of way. Since this is your favourite kind of music, you should hold the door open and have long conversations with your friends before deciding whether you want to disembark on this floor or continue your journey.

5. If you are standing in the farthest-most-est corner of the elevator, you should run over everyone else and still be the first one to get out. (I am ashamed to say I do this all the time, perhaps out of some subliminal urge to be first.)

6. If you are a watchman, and you see a crazy woman holding two encyclopaedias in her arms trying to close a derailed elevator door, you should turn your eyes back to the Marathi crossword in the newspaper. Later, you can giggle about her unique style of dressing.

February 21, 2005

Scary Fact

I’ve found dead mosquitoes in my house every morning for some days. Various rude volcanoes on my skin assure me the pests were very much alive some hours ago.

Is my blood poisoning them? Ohmigod! What is that evil broth that’s coursing up and down my veins?

And what’s with the stupid mosquitoes? Don’t they have some sort of sixth sense that tells them to keep away from Inky, the Poisonous One?

This is the cruellest parody of the shama-parwana legend I can think of.

February 20, 2005

Rant, Not Poetry

Relax buddy!
You don’t need to hold the door open for me
Polished nails and bejeweled fingers
are perfectly capable of opening doors
As are high heels of walking over coat-less ditches
into corporate offices and stealing your job
If you really want to do something, then why don’t you
call in someone and have that glass ceiling removed
It’s hot in here, dont you agree?

February 17, 2005


Imagine this scene:

A little girl is walking barefoot in a raggedy frock down the road. On her head, she’s carrying a big, heavy bundle of wood. Her frame is barely able to support this load. A long way ahead of her walks her mother, carrying the load with ease, for she has carried it since she was a little girl herself.
Suddenly, the little girl stops. She spies a toy lying on the side of the road. It’s a doll with a missing arm. It’s probably spilt over from the overflowing garbage bin nearby.
Our girl had longed for a doll for many days now. She’s knows her folks can’t afford it, and dolls are resigned to the world of dreams, never to be realized. And here lies this doll, waiting to be picked up and taken home.
She wants to bend and pick it up. But there lies the catch. If she does anything except walk straight, the bundle of wood will fall to the ground. The delicate string that holds the wood together will break, and the wood will scatter. A sound beating is sure to follow. And as with all angry mothers, there’s always the chance that the offending doll will be snatched away.
Should she risk it for the chance of owning a doll, even if for a little while?

Advice please.

February 16, 2005

Shakespeare on Inkspill

Her tongue will not obey her heart, nor can
Her heart inform her tongue,--the swan's
That stands upon the swell at full of tide,
And neither way inclines.

(Antony and Cleopatra: Act 3, Scene 2)

February 15, 2005


For fifteen whole minutes, I was alone in a house with cable TV yesterday! Can you beat that! I’ll answer that for you! No you can’t! The remote control was in my hand! My fingers were curled around that rectangular source of all worldly power! The buttons were crying out to be pressed! The TV could accommodate as many channels as the satellite could air! I could actually see fifty different kinds of things happening! One channel was actually showing a clip from the “Rang De Basanti” mahurat! Aamir Khan and Atul Kulkarni! One channel was promising to show “Amelie” later at night! I saw “Friends” last night! The exclamation mark key is threatening to jump out of my keyboard!

Two sparrows and a pigeon today! Tara Rum Pum Pum! Happy Wednesday all!

(Note to myself: No more coffee in the morning for you Missy)

February 14, 2005


The birds have stopped visiting.
The bajra I put out last morning was untouched when I opened the balcony door today.
There was nothing I could have done.
I have deserted my family again.
I hope the sparrow and pigeon who paid a cursory visit today will bring their friends along tomorrow.
I’m missing the ruckus.

February 13, 2005

Feb 14

Celebrating the silver anniversary of lonely Valentine’s Day evenings this year. Quite used to it now!

Fear of the Shiv Sena is stopping Radio Mirchi Pune from even mentioning the V-word, and they are playing their regular bhajans like “Koi nahin hai kamre mein”.

Good thing I did not bother to have dinner last night, or I would have regurgitated it onto the Times of India, which has a red rose under its masthead today! Ew!

Dream V-Day Date: “Dum bhar jo udhar munh phere, O chanda” Nargis and Raj Kapoor in Awara. Nothing less will do.
(And that is why I will observe all future V-Days alone)

In other news, the mater reportedly slept off for 12 hours flat after I left Delhi. These are the small things that speak volumes about me.

February 11, 2005

Indian Idle

Yesterday I saw the Indian Idol show after a gap of three and a half months. The last time I had seen it, enthusiastic participants from Delhi and Kolkata were making complete fools of themselves trying to be casually cool and seriously talented at the same time. It was great fun to watch!

Last night, four top contestants were battling it out to stick on for another week. As they took center stage to sing one by one, I felt quite disappointed. I would not pay to hear any of those voices. I know as much about music as Laloo about Italian, but I know that there was no magic in any of those voices. None of them is an idol. You would not know their voice if it played on radio. Without serious technological support, none of the voices would be able to carry a song on its shoulders.

Sunidhi Chauhan, Sukhwinder Singh, Sonu Nigam, Kunal Ganjawala all affect various internal organs in unique ways the moment their voices come on air. Where are their successors? Not in this contest. I refuse to believe that this is the best talent that the country threw up.

All the best to all of them. As for me, I’m waiting for the next round.

February 10, 2005

Another Letter

Dear God,

I promise to be a good child. I’ll do everything you asked me to in all the holy books that earthlings fight over. I’ll be an angel on earth and spread your message of kindness and light. All I want in return is one teensy weensy favour.

No, it’s not a valentine for Valentine’s Day. That would not be too bad, but this is far more important.

Please don’t ever make me have to get paperwork done from Delhi University. I will die if I have to do it again.

Your child

P.S. It was raining this afternoon with the sun shining brightly. You must not drink in the afternoons. It's bad for your divine image.

February 09, 2005


Dearest Migraine,

There is a time and a place for everything. This is neither your time, nor place. I am supposed to be having fun on my vacation, not holding your weepy, pukey, achy, breaky self in my arms all night.

Bugger off before I shoot myself in the head to get rid of you.

An old friend

February 07, 2005


Thank you, Mr Bhansali, for not giving a damn.
The last time you did that was Khamoshi. And that was far too long back.
You are forgiven the “khatta nimboos” and “kaimon aachhhhhooos”.

Considering the burden of expectation I had put on the movie, it was quite successful in impressing me.

Despite some weak moments and illogical events that irritate and distract, it is an amazing showcase of what good writing in the hands of good directors and actors can achieve.

Bhansali chooses his child artistes with care and they never let him down. One more unforgettable performance that sets the standards Rani has to meet!

It is special, because it walks proudly without either the Hollywood technological crutches or the Bollywood song and dance wheelchair.

Amitabh Bachchan can afford to die a happy man now. Coming up with a better role for him will be a tough call.

Rani Mukherjee walks the razor’s edge between the blind-deaf and the retard without faltering too often.

The let-me-wring-your-eyeballs situations that made guest appearances in Khamoshi make their presence felt in your handkerchief more prominently this time. It’s a Sanjay Leela Bhansali trademark: quite different from the way Yash Chopra and Mani Ratnam make you cry.

The movie came too close home at certain points. If you heard sobbing, you should’ve gone to some other theater or some other show.

Exposed: My Tragic Love Story

I had known when I left that it was all over between us. You would not have dumped me so unceremoniously if you had cared one bit. That I loved you to distraction meant nothing to you. How foolish I was, thinking I had found my companion for life the day I set my eyes on you. We ticked, I told myself.

My wishing anything was of no use, was it? You let go of my hand and vanished without a word.

I missed you there. I thought I saw you once, but that was just me being mad.

I came back determined to pick up the strings and try again. But when I met you this time, I knew things could never be the same. And not because I had changed. Because you had changed.

Why the bloody hell do you have to have “Fast Track” etched across your face, you stupid watch!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Where on earth am I going to find a three-year-old model of a Titan now?????????????

Damn! Damn! Damn!

Moral: Watch out what you fall in love with!!!!!

February 03, 2005


(Inspired by the following lines from the Heretic: Love only lasts for strangers/ who met when the night was younger)

Madam are you expecting a friend?
I’m really getting late
My wife complains it’s become a trend
I’m not up to a debate

But it’s a great job I’ve landed here
Make some good money too
Here’s your…well let’s see…seventh beer
And the last, I must beg you

Arm in arm kids crowd around
I mix each one a drink
The music’s loud, it drowns the sound
Of how young lovers think

Later at night the gentlemen arrive
With the “ladies” around town
Blue Label makes our business thrive
And lets their gelled hair down

The last ones in are the lonely hearts
Trickling in hunched up to mope
Some broken often, in various parts
And shattered past all hope

A gentleman just looked in and left
Was he the one you sought?
Bald? Or should I say hair-bereft
Not him? I should’ve thought

You sure he’s coming? It’s awfully late
And I have to close up soon

They never keep the late night date
With old stars under the new moon

February 02, 2005

Going Home Today To:

Mom. Dad. Sis. Cable TV. Laptop. Friends. Enemies. Fog. Smog. Blog. Hot Water Shower. Wedding. Dark mornings. Dark evenings. Runny nose. Sunshine at Dilli Haat. Surajkund Crafts Mela. Paperwork. Cramps in both feet. Mom’s Cooking. Udupi. Sweaters. D-Cold Total. Cheat Auto Drivers. Adrak chai. Waking up late. Socks. Shopping. Mom. Dad. Sis. Friends.

Listening to Madhushala

It means so many different things to different people...
To me, it is primarily the journey of the writer/poet.
Inspiration is the madhu.

This blog is never going to review anything that is sublime, so this entry exits here.

February 01, 2005


Insomnia: When your face is a site for sore eyes.