Wordzzle Time

Posted by SMM on 10:02
The words for this week's Wordzzle are "pogo stick, ant farm, psychic, tin box, wall safe, Waterloo, surge protector, pneumonia, ravages of time, turtle".

For those who are not familiar with this you can refer back to Raven's blog.

Now for my two bits (drumrolllll):
"So, Mam, that Egyptian cruise you mentioned? You met a sheikh and an Indian who both wanted to marry you? "

"Speak up young man. Don't mumble. What is wrong with you? Grammatical erros and mumbling. I can't hear you. "

"YOUR EGYPTIAN CRUISE?" I bellowed. She had been able to hear just fine so far.

"Ah the time I got pneumonia. I was carrying an ant farm as a gift for the people I was staying with. They didn't seem to appreciate it much though. They didn't know how I had kept it safe in a tin box in a wall safe all through the journey. Anyway the high and mighty family I was staying with didn't like it. So I gave it away. I should have taken them a turtle instead."

"Ummmm whom did you give the ant farm away to?"

"Stop skirting around a topic young man. You’re skirting around a topic like a kid jumping around a manhole on his
pogo stick. I may look stupid but I'm psychic you know."

Her metaphors were worse than Sidhu’s comments. Just like a scene straight out of a Bollywood movie, there was a flash of lighting and thunder…and the power flickered. 

“Do you have a surge protector Mam?”

“A what?” Why on earth would I need that? All newfangled nonsense. Switch off the light and bring me the candle from the shelf there.”

“You know I even went to Waterloo when I was in Egypt.”

Waterloo in Egypt? Uh isin’t that in Belgium.”

“Be quiet. You know nothing. Belgium is where Hercule Poirot is from. I have met him 
also. Too short and was a little funny.”

“You met Hercule Poirot? I thought he was a fictional character from Agatha Christie.”

“You know nothing. It was me who told her about him and she wrote the books.”

 For new readers here are my previous link:


B for Backstabbing, Backbiting, Bitching

Posted by SMM on 14:37
This is something I have never done. Today I shall thank A for teaching me so much about my life. I learnt about backbiters, backstabbers and bitches in my very first year of college.

A & me became very good friends in our 1st year. Being in Pune, away from family, missing familiar faces, we shared confidences and were joint at the hip. We were even called the Siamese twins sometimes. I was staying in a hostel at that time where I hated the food while she was staying with her sister (who was working) and they had brought a maid from home to cook and clean etc. Since her sister was working and I hated the food, I would most of the time end up eating home-cooked food at her place. We shared lots of confidences and told each other which guys we liked and what we would do to get asked out by them. Though we such good friends, I also soon made other friends - I had my hostel gang and my college gang and Bong gang and train gang, while A would always want to be with me. What I did not realize (I feel very stupid in hindsight) is that she was slowly trying to poison their minds against me since she was jealous of my friendship with others. When I realized her possessiveness, I explained to her that though I did have other friends she would be my best friend always and that she need not worry about hem. A always had lots of money to throw around - she would think nothing of walking into the really expensive shops and purchase a pair of sandals for 3000 bucks (something which I till date would think 20 times before I do so) while I would be thrilled with the 80 buck rope sandals I picked up from Hong Kong lane (No we did not go to Hong Kong - that was the lane for all the accessory shopping in Pune for college students). I was thrilled when my cousin came down to Pune one weekend and bought me a Wrangler jacket (which I still have though I have outgrown it now). I was naive (I'd like to believe so) enough to brush of her barbed comment about my worthless sandals that had not been bought for a 4-figure amount were completely ughhhhhh or that my bag (again from Hong Kong) was oh so cheappppp. She would bitch about others to me and I would tell her not to always talk negative about others. I had never seen all this before (despite being in a girl's school for 7 years) and did not recognize what this was all about and also did not want to lose her friendship. She told me tales of how the hottest dudes in college would message her all night and beg her for a date while she was spending all her time with me, and how the guy whom I really liked had asked her out for a date. I had just come from home and one night being very upset shared with her certain tings which I did not want others to know. Its not that I am ashamed, I just don't think everyone needs to everything about me.
Anyway the end to the longwinding tale is that she bitched about me to my other friends , turned them against me, told the guy I really liked that I was a neurotic bitch and was apparently seeing this other guy who was in fact just a good friend (cliched but true). This went on until I suddenly realized that I had become alienated from my friends excepting for a few though I couldn't understand why. One fine day in my 2nd year, one of her friends told me we needed to talk. Since I had never really spoken to him much I was wondering what he wanted to talk about and there was no way would I go on a date with him. it's he who told me that A had been going around telling the others about what I had apparently bitched about them (when it was actually her who had said it) and how I made very sarcastic comments about them and their families (I may make a comment at you yes, but your family never), how I was two-timing and even three-timing guy which is why I never had the time to meet my own friends etc etc. I can't even tell you how shell shocked I was to hear about this. I asked the guy how could I trust him. He said he had observed me for sometime and had figured that I was the person who if she had to say anything about anyone would say it to their face and not behind their back. He took me to meet the others who all confirmed what she had said. I was just so shocked and upset by what she had said. Everyone wanted to confront her. I told them to go ahead if they wanted but to keep me out of it. I told them I appreciated them and their friendship but this is something I needed to do alone. I did it. Unfortunately or maybe smartly I should say, she started crying and told me I was the bitch who had listened to what others had said about my one true friend and how noone liked me but tolerated me because of her. Sounds stupid today, but back in college it was a huuuuge big thing for me. I am glad that I saw sense and just left. After that I avoided her and when asked by anyone else about what went wrong, I told them that I didn't like people who did not know the meaning of friendship.
My Dad told me that if someone makes you feel bad about yourself, if its true then listen to them and if its not, then just immediately cut them off from my social circle. He also told me that i would not always have the option to cut them out of my life completely then to keep them at arm's length distance, talk about the weather and cricket with them and nothing more, nothing less and for not more than 5 minutes. today this is what I do in my professional life. I can;t cut out the backstabbers and backbiters unfortunately so I just keep to myself and carry on superficial conversation with them.
So today how I handle myself among the professionals in backbiting, backstabing and bitching is what I learnt in my experience with A, which is why I thank her.


A Wee Bit of Sympathy for me, Please

Posted by SMM on 14:46
Spare me a wee bit of sympathy please. I tripped and fell right outside my office yesterday and hurt my left ankle pretty bad. Today my left ankle is encased in a crepe bandage. It hurts to even shift it slightly from the angle at which it is resting. Arjun's taking me for an X-ray this evening.
Before you ask why did I come to office today, I had to. I have a matter coming up for final arguments tomorrow.

Addendum: I am much better now. Still hobbling around but the X-ray report said no ligament tear or hairline fracture thankfully. Hope to be shipshape by the end of this week. Thanks for all the sympathy folks. Made me feel so much better :)



Posted by SMM on 15:04
Mr. Syed Geelani has said that he is a Pakistani. Then why is he still in India? Why does he not go stay in his own country? Why does he not go back to Pakistan then? Geelani is living in India, surviving on Indian resources and openly defying the Indian government by proclaiming he is a Pakistani. Because he knows that once he leaves Indian soil he will have no value for Pakistan. If I could, I would have him publicly whipped (in accordance with Islamic law - not Indian law) for betraying his country. Let him be made a public example. You don't like India - you say that you don't belong here. Then go - go seek asylum in Pakistan. Pakistan has enough of its own problems, that it needs another. And if Pakistan also won't have you then become an independent country surrounded by two of the biggest hubs for terrorist training schools (I wonder is it like Kota with all its IIT training institutes?). Kashmir has suffered enough. It does not need Pakistani a***licking sycophants to add another problem.

Oh and while we'r at it. Who the hell is Arundhati Roy to say anything about the Kashmir issue or that Kashmir needs freedom from India? Last I heard India had not colonized Kashmir that it needs azaadi (freedom) from India. Just because she has allegedly followed people's movements and is a Booker prize winner - does that give her the right to say anything seditious and get away with it? She would have been jailed for making such a statement in any other part of the world. She forgets that it is only because she is an Indian citizen that she has the liberty to say such a thing. Would she have had such liberty to say any such thing in Pakistan?  Today she says that Kashmir needs azaadi. Tomorrow she'l say give away he Seven Sister states in the North-east. next she'l say Gujrat should also be given azaadi. Has she forgotten how Taslima Nasreen was issued a fatwa in her own country and today runs and hides in fear of her own countrymen?
This is not about being a Hindu or a Muslim, but about people who try to divide India on communal lines. I not only condemn Islamic extremists, but I also equally condemn Hindu extremists.


Worddzle Time

Posted by SMM on 09:38
The words for this week's Wordzzle are tiramisu, transfixed, evacuation, Queen of the Nile, pillowcase, grammatical, voice inflection, pacified, micro climate, swami. For those of you who are not familiar with Wordzzle...you can refer to Raven's blog.

Here's my two bits for this week (Sorry I ended up missing last week's Wordzzle. Was traveling.)  

I entered the shabby room once more, this time with firm determination in my heart that I would ask the Old Horse my query and solve the mystery once and for all. The Old Horse was transfixed to the television watching some programme about micro-climate and flooding of the Nile. I took my swami's name and with a sudden voice inflection which perhaps belied my anxiety spoke up "Listen lady.....".

But would she let me complete . Oh No !!! Gawd the Old Horse would even try Swamiji's patience. "It is all this global warming and population. Population is the botheration of all nations for generation after generation. See now there is flooding all over. The UN is carrying out the  evacuation of all people who live on the banks of the Nile. You know I took a trip on the 'Queen of the Nile' sometime back. I met a sheikh there who wanted me to become his third wife. He promised me the moon and the stars. There was also a nice Indian gentleman on board. Both would compete for my affections."

Her eyes took on a dreamy look as she went back into those days.  "Did you get my tiramisu?"

"Tiramisu. Ol...errr Ma'm you never said nothing about tiramisu. you only ordered me to go get you a silver photoframe and a portion of wings."

I was just so irritated I didn't even make any attempt to give a dignified pacified reply which I ought to have made, since I was the one who needed information from her.

"You just made a grammatical error son." She stood  up slowly and I saw a cushion covered in an oversized pillowcase on her chair. I suddenly started missing home and my own clean lovely comfortable bed. I just wanted to turn tail and run home into my grandmother's arms. I couldn't do that. It was for her sake that I had come here to find out if there was any truth in the old family rumour. 
 For new readers here are my previous links (since I'v finally figured out how to create a link now):
Part IV


Yeh Jeevan Hai

Posted by SMM on 16:02
This song has been  playing on my Ipod since morning. I have heard this song so many times but its only today that I suddenly started wondering at the beautiful lyrics.
Yeh Jeevan Hai, Is Jeevan Ka
(This is Life)

Yahi Hai - Yahi Hai - Yahi Hai Rungroop
(Of this life this is the colours & shapes)

Thode Ghum Hain, Thodi Khushiyan
(A little sadness, a little  happiness)

Yahi Hai - Yahi Hai - Yahi Hai Chaon Dhoop
(This is the shade and the sun)

Yeh Jeevan Hai... 

Yeh Na Socho Isme Apni Haar Hai Ke Jeet Hai
(Don't think whether there is your win or your loss in this)

Ise Apna Lo Jo Bhi Jeevan Ki Reet Hai
(Adopt this, this is the tradition of life)

Yeh Zid Chodo, Bandhan Yuh Na Todo
(Don't be stibborn, don't break off your ties)

Har Pal Ek Darpan Hai
(Every moment is a  mirror)

Yeh Jeevan Hai...

Dhan Se Na Duniya Se, Ghar Se Na Dwar Se
(Not from money, not from the world, not from the  home or the door)

Saason Ki Dor Bandhi Hai, Preetam Ke Pyar Se
(Your breath is tied to your love)

Duniya Choote, Par Na Toote, Yeh Aisa Bandhan Hai
(The world may leave you but this tie will not break, this is such a bond)

Yeh Jeevan Hai...
Yeh Jeevan Hai, Is Jeevan Ka
Yahi Hai - Yahi Hai - Yahi Hai Rungroop
Thode Ghum Hain, Thodi Khushiyan
Yahi Hai - Yahi Hai - Yahi Hai Chaon Dhoop
Yeh Jeevan Hai...


Those Good Ol' Days

Posted by SMM on 13:57
I look at kids these days all the time with their personal mobiles and computers...and wonder where the magic of childhood, the innocence, the carefree feeling, those shrieks of joy have gone.

I wonder how many kids today have played tipri (Hopskotch), Long Gallery/ Short Gallery, Car Numbers, Catch, Treasure Hunt/ Investigators, Hot & Cold, Dodgeball, Dumb Charades, Roti, Unch Neech, Frisbee, Hide n Seek, Cycling, Swimming etc etc. One of my favourite games (I just can't remember the name though. If any of you do remember plz tell me) was where one person with his back to the rest of us (the Denner) would call out random alphabets and we could take a jump forward only if our name had that alphabet and when one of us finally reached the Denner, we would tap him on the back and run back to the Safe Zone. If any of us got caught by the Denner before we reached the Safe Zone, then that person was the next Denner. I remember resolving loads of disputes about who was to be the first Denner with a show of hands or "Oh God God". I remember playing "Uma Joshi" and "Jab Miss Mary choti this..." and doing intricate puzzles with strings. I would learn new string tricks from my grandmother and show them off. Onetime we put up a tent and sold lemonade and made sure all the Uncles & Aunties in the building came down to have it. We sold it for 25p a glass. I remember making all cards - birthday cards, anniversary cards, just like that cards, new year greetings. I remember playing for hours with a small ball of atta (dough).

I remember playing Dark Room, Snakes & Ladders, Darts, Quiz, Make-believe, Zap, Uno, Ludo, Scrabble, Business, Monopoly.

I spent hours reading the latest Quest and Target and Newsjoy (I don't think any of these exist anymore). Quest was a children's magazine which used to come from Russia. Publication stopped after the breakup of the USSR. Target was another children's magazine which was on the lines of Quest. Newsjoy was a children's weekly newspaper, which used to condense the news from "adult newspapers" and put it in an easy-to-read and understand form for the kids. I remember reading Amar Chitra Kathas, Tinkles, Chacha Chowdhary (whose mind thinks faster than a computer), Chalet School series, Three Investigators, lots of Enid Blyton (I shall have to do a separate post on her sometime).

I remember waiting for Sundays to watch Tom & Jelly (as I used to call it) & Mahabharat. I remember watching Dekh Bhai Dekh & Zaman Badal Gaya Hai. When Sony TV & Star had just started showing in India, I would avidly watch I Dream of Jeannie, Different Strokes, Wonder Years, Swatcats & Doogie Howser MD.

Those were the days when we had to painstakingly sit with the family encyclopedia and research for school projects (no Wikipaedia in those days) and trace out pictures to put in it, write out the entire thing with tongue hanging out in the effort & concentration required, make charts for the class board.

Aaaahhhh...the magic in those good ol' days. Kids today just miss out on all of this and so much more cooped up with their personal phones and computers all day. They lose their innncoence in the umpteen rounds of tuitions and career enhancing classes. Kids today don't go for dance classes cuz they want to, but cuz it's somethig to put in their CV. Kids are entering the ratrace as early as the age of 10 and burn out by the time they are 18. The only time my parents actually got serious about my studies was my Board years & class 9 (when I almost flunked Maths). My parents didn't mind whether I got an A or a B, so long as I understood what I had studied, and not learning by rote.

I hope my kids (whenever I have them) have a chance to enjoy their childhood and don't get weighed down by peer pressure and the ratrace at an early age.


Wordzzle Time

Posted by SMM on 18:27
The words for this week are middle finger, text message, the letter “Q,” Shangri-La, melodramatic, compensate, elixir, band of brothers, quadruped, explicit.

I looked up to see the Old horse flashing me her middle finger. I had already figured out by now that everything she said and did had to have an explicit undercurrent to it. Just then my phone beeped. It was  an enigmatic text message from Crow which simply said "The Letter Q" and made no sense to me.  

I zoomed ahead toward the shops. Passed a  brightly lit board advertising "Shangri-La". Well I was pretty much sure I wouldn't get the famed elixir  of Immortality in this Shangri-La at least.  Passed a merry band of brothers singing some bawdy number loud and drunk. Shit....I miss home and my friends there. I would have been upto  some such nonsensical thing with my friends.  The sun was just starting to set. If I could only ignore the  pubs and bars dotting  either side of the road at regular intervals, I could just about imagine a pretty blonde  with green eyes sitting beside me in the old  roadster  which would pretty much compensate for the otherwise sad view. Just as i started imagining a girl in a short skirt and lovely long legs, an image of the   melodramatic Old Horse flared up before me. Ughhhh...scary sight.  Oooops I had just crossed the silversmith. Had to back up . Shelled out some very hard earned money of mine and picked up the smallest frame I could find. Well she could always cut her photograph to fit the frame. Another stop at  Buffalo Wings. Picked up a couple of plates of wings. Narrowly missed the boss and headed back to the Old Horse again.


Its Raining...Its Pouring

Posted by SMM on 14:13
Its raining
Its pouring
The old man is snoring....

I feel like getting out of my office and going dancing in the rain.
I want to launch paper boats in the rain.
I want to sing in the rain - "Aao bachchon tumhe dikhaye jhaanki Hindustan ki". Don't ask me why that particular sng, but maybe cuz 'm feeling patriotic with Independence day coming up next week.
I want to have garma garam pakoras with spicy hari chutni.
I want to go splotch in the puddles. the lane outside my school would get flooded very fast and we would go splotch splotch in knee deep water screaming and shrieking, splashing water on one and all.
I have just had a hearty meal and now I want to simply curl up and sleep.

Anyway 'wants' aside, tomorrow is a SECOND SATURDAY, which for me means its a holidayyyyyyyyy. Arjun's going out of town this weekend on work. My plans include a nice looooooooong session at the parlour indulging myself with a seaweed wrap (or should I have a sea salt face cleansing) and a manicure and a pedicure and a back massage and a very painful but essential blackhead removal session. Why do allt he lovely things in life have to have some bit which is painful :(

I plan a Sunday of getting up late & afternoon naps (before and after lunch) & lotsa reading time.


Posted by SMM on 14:40

I have been doing all kinds of small small things since morning like discussing status of matters, updating charts and relying to mails, reminding my clerks of things to be done by him, looking at the status of matters next week - basically anything where I don't have to use my brains. Today my brains are in a hooky mood.

And my brain has convinced me that I need to take a half day and go meet my little 3 month old nephew who has just reached India on Saturday night and also pull Arjun (the Hubby) along :D

Half days for both of us .... wooohooooooooo. Maybe I can also convince him to treat me to a double scoop of Baskin Robbins Coffee Almond Fudge in a waffle cone :P


Wordzzle Time

Posted by SMM on 12:05
The words for this week’s Wordzzle are:
ghastly, excrement, bill of sale, vague, thicket, precarious, life long ambition, gunnery sergeant, posthumous, bellowed

I walked towards the parking lot she had ordered me to. There was a ghastly smell of excrement coming from somewhere beyond a thicket of gumwood trees. I started the car, then realized that I had to cross a precarious bridge to get out of the parking lot. Well it had been my lifelong ambition to be a racetrack driver – this was my one and only chance. Closed my eyes, said a quick prayer and bellowed “Forward” as loud as a gunnery sergeant on D-Day and just raced forward. After a couple of minutes I felt something solid. Opened my eyes. Oh wonder of wonders!!! I was not posthumous Sam Singh from India. I was aliveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee. I started the car and raced forward toward the market. Gawd the ‘Old horse’ as I had nicknamed her was really nothing less than a gunnery sergeant herself. 
See ya again next Saturday folks….

Posted by SMM on 12:11
Think I woke up on the wrong side of the bed today. I seem to be pissed with the world at large today. Argument with the Hubby as soon as I reached office. Open my mail box to see a stinker from a client. Not in the mood for even chocolate. Now boss wants an update on all our pending matters. What the hell am I supposed to do? Bloody sit and do this stupid thing or do all my long pending work since I'm in office today. These days I seem to be out of office more than in, which is not an issue. Only problem is that I have this whole list of long pending work, irritating clients who find it easier to pass the buck onto the lawyer rather than tell their Board what the actual issue is, maddening demanding bosses, work never seeming to get over. My 'To Do' list only seems to be getting larger. Each time I strike one thing off another two seem to get added. Sounds like Ravan's head. My clerk got it for not giving me an updated file. The office boy got it for not having filled up the bottle of water on my desk at 11 am till he was told to do so. Today whatever I say seems to be offensive. Easier for me to keep my mouth shut rather than bite everyone's head off.

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