Saturday, February 28, 2009

The sort of post where I could be smoking something quite potent

As a concept I don't approve of metablogging too much. Now that I have so lightly tossed that word into the conversation, let me explain what it means. Unless you know already, in which case we are finished here. I won't be making any more pertinent points really and you can go home now, Elvis really has left the building.

But if you don't, well, metablogging is the boring process wherein the blogger blogs about the act of blogging itself. Gah! That's right. So they talk about why they aren't blogging, or what they like blogging about, or what they'd really like to blog about if only they had the time/patience/energy to do so. Sometimes they write useful stuff to do with blogging too (hard to believe, I know), I guess, though one can never be too sure.

As I was saying, I don't like it.

And so what is killing me right now is whether this post counts as being a metablogging post or not.


Some of my blogger friends have been discussing whether opening their innermost secrets (in other words, FB/Orkut profiles) to readers of their blogs is a good idea. I have an only somewhat related point to make here and since that by itself is a historical event, kindly stand at attention and put hand to heart.

Right, so what I say is this - it doesn't matter whether you are anonymous or blogging under your real name, it also doesn't matter what your 'I want to make franship with you' policy is. If you're not comfortable with people (or even just that one person) knowing about it ('it' being absolutely anything in this world), don't put it on the internet. Yeah, it's just as simple as that. If you fear something will come out, well, it will. It really is a matter of time. Nothing remains a secret on the internet beyond a point. It is one of the commandments that were given to the forefathers of the world wide web and they told me so personally. (They did too.) So yes, even if you blog under a pseudonym, behave (write) as if you are writing under your very real name (including you, Champakali) and the people reading you are friends as well the ones you'd much rather not run into a dark alley at night.

What about all your personal thoughts, the deep/dark/both secrets that want to spill out of your gut, the urge to put it all there - well, my friend, that is what your dog-eared diary and the Harrison taala is for. Of course you still run the risk of being discovered (specially if you have a couple of nosy siblings running riot) but at least there's no Google to aid them.

Of course, though I keep saying 'you', I actually mean 'me', but if you are the kind of person who doesn't mind advice being tossed your way, consider it given. Point over. Let's move on.


Friday, February 27, 2009

Welcoming Wedgwood

Once upon a time, M got an urgent call from his brother in Singapore. Post this call, M materialized in front of me, very excited.

M: Wedgwood is going bankrupt!
Me: Hmm, ya? Poor things.
Another possibility strikes me.
Me: Did we have any stock in them?
M: No!
Me; Oh good, so what's Wedgwood anyway?
M: It's a company that makes...made beautiful crystal and stuff. Very classy, expensive and elegant. A must-have in stylish homes.
Me: No wonder we have not heard of them.
M: Yes, but now they are going bankrupt and apparently they are having a clearance sale.
Me: Do they have a store in India?
M: No, but we can see their website.

Perusal of the website revealed that the crockery and crystal were very impressive. The prices were impressive too, clearance sale and all.

Me: This is still very expensive.
M: Yes but this is our last chance to buy Wedgwood.
M: Ok, let me check with Didi if she wants to buy too.

A swift call to my older sibling was made.

Me: Wedgwood is having a sale!
Sis: I prefer Noritake.
Me: What the hell is Noritake?
Sis: They are competitors to Wedgewood. Noritake is modern, contemporary whereas Wedgwood is more elegant and classy.

Great. A few minutes ago I did not know of the existence of Wedgwood and now they had competitors?

After giving the heads-up to the branches of the family, we came back to the website. In other times, we may have gone completely insane buying Wedgwood things simply because IT WAS ON SALE! and they were giving ALMOST 60% OFF! but the same recession that caused Wedgwood to shut shop is making its presence felt in our household too. (In fact, for the first time in my life I am writing down expenses. My dhobi is ripping me off.) And therefore, a budget was set and the order placed. We were mighty chuffed that we exercised control, normally not a thing we exercise very well (come on, we don't even exercise exercise well...sheesh).

Have you even bought stuff from a bankrupt store? One is always fretting whether they will in fact honour their side of the commitment once you have parted with your credit card number. Of course, M and I kept reminding each other, Wedgwood was a very old company. They would not sacrifice their brand equity just as they were bidding adios to business altogether. Nevertheless, a long and excruciating waiting period followed in which we both had nightmares of the card being charged and the dishes and plates not arriving at all. Suffice it to say that we were very relieved when their mail came confirming the dispatch of the consignment.

The only problem was that we didn't account for a minor thing called customs duty.

Much wailing and thrashing of breast was done once we remembered (were reminded) that 30% of the cost of goods would have to be put in the hands of the DHL man. One even tried to plead one's case with the DHL man who threatened to take away the good stuff if we didn't show him the money and therefore money was showed and he handed over the three cartons. Padma, Pramod and I got to work and checked each item while the DHL man was held hostage and once it was ensured that the delicate stuff was indeed intact, he was allowed to go.

The only problem now was about where to stock the things. No one is allowed to buy a pencil in this house without first submitting a proposal about where they plan to keep it (refer post) and here we had all this new, lovely and most importantly delicate stuff that needed to be stashed away before Adi woke up and decided to investigate matters himself. Quick thinking was done (by whom? What do you mean by whom? By Padma, who else) and some old things were given an early retirement (I wasn't exaggerating earlier) to make place for the new. C'est la vie and all that. We are now the proud owners of this kind of stuff.

Pretty, don't you think? Almost worth it.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

You are a handsome man, Glen Hansard

Every now and then a song will resurrect itself in my head and refuse to budge out till I surrender to it's charms meaning sing it to a stranger/put it on my blog. Mostly it is the kind of songs that makes people clap their hands on their ears and ask you to just turn it down please but once in while something goes awry in my system and I start liking softer numbers.

For example, these days, it is this.

The film
was great too. At least I know I loved it. Did you too?

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Diets are difficult in more ways than one

Mahesh's diet has an unforeseen negative. I am now out of a dustbin for all the food that Adi refuses to eat. It is a fact that Adi's food is the tastiest in the house. For one thing, there are no diet-induced restrictions on his morsels. I mean, we nearly drive Kalpana nuts guiding her about how we want our food to be cooked. Hold the oil, very less salt, not too much mirch-masala, followed by a swift Kalpana, yaar aajkal khaane mein kuchh mazaa nahin aa raha. Adi however is thankfully at the age where plump is perfect and the aloo-paranthas can be eaten like they should be, cooked to a crisp with the aid of desi ghee. The only problem is that he doesn't. A few bites and he is done. This was where Mahesh used to play the scavenger - cleaning up the remains of Adi's paranthas and tikkis, cheese pasta and fried snacks was...well...child's play, except that child's play includes everything except polishing off the food. Then M went on his infamous diet and all this stopped. Now I don't know what to do with the lovely but fattening leftovers. My birds, meaning the crows and pigeons I feed everyday, do not like this kind of food, preferring to stick to egg yolks and bajra grains respectively.

I took to dumping some of the stuff that Adi refused into the family's salad bowl every night (this is the 'khaana phekne se bhagwan ji naraaz ho jate hain' concept from my childhood come back to haunt me and my waist). Mahesh has taken to sniffing and peering at everything suspiciously. What is this, he asks. Mushrooms. Sweet Corn. Pasta. The answers change according to what the boy had refused during the day. Finally Mahesh looked at me with pleading eyes, yaar, yeh exotic salad band kar de. Sirf kheera, tamatar aur gaajar theek hai.

Stuck again. What the hell does one do with the food that a toddler doesn't eat? Whatwhatwhat?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

What really mattered at the Oscars

It's a task to watch the Oscars with a toddler who decides to launch a series of tantrums upon waking up but we managed. Perhaps Adi will finally get the message that the parents' love for gawping at celebrities with slack jaws is greater than...well...pretty much everything else.

I quite like Frieda Pinto. Of course one hears that she's done a little number on the poor sod who was her husband but I am sure that as she graces the red carpet in her John Galliano dress, the prickly memories of such errors of judgment are comfortably distant. She looked really pretty though. Of course what I consider pretty, my friends consider 'ekdum kaamwaali type', but my friends have poor taste.

Except in me, naturally.

The Best Actress category had some good moments. When Angelina Jolie's name was announced, Mahesh wanted to see Jennifer Aniston's expression in the tradition of the ever-husky Rekhaji and the ever-grumpy Jayaji.

When Kate Winslet won the Best Actress award - how come we still have the division between actors and actresses as far as award ceremonies are concerned but must refer to them as the unisex actor everywhere else? - she gave a fairly long and somewhat hysterical speech. Mahesh wanted to know why the music did not start playing after two minutes like Sajid Khan had told us it would. Why, why, why? I didn't have any answers. Do share if you do.

Also, Mumbai Mirror tells me that Kate Winslet is not going to do any nude scenes anymore. Ten movies with nudity, partial or otherwise is apparently enough. Even for Katie.

In other news, while I was away, recuperating from that terrible cold, one of you has stopped following this blog. What the hell? Is this any way to treat a sick woman? Just as I was inching towards the magical figure of 40, someone withdrew their magic support. The world just gets crueler and crueler. And polluted too. But at least now I know what Incy Wincy Spider must have felt.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


I despise being ill, which is not to say others enjoy walking around with stuffy noses and their Vs resembling their Bs but I honestly and truly detest being anything but completely robust as human beings go. I am the sort of irritating person who exercises everyday and eats healthy and consequently I take great pleasure in poking fun at other people's (M's) misery when they catch the flu or cold doing the rounds while I revel in my own iron-proof immunity. There has to be some payback for leading such a boring life and this is mine, if you ask me.

You could go as far as to say that I am a health snob.

M often gets the snivels whereupon he commences to take out his beloved nose drops and starts to bombard his system with Coldarins ('only at night because it makes me sweepy') and D'colds and what do you know, even D'cold Totals. He claims he cannot sleep. When he snores loudly at night and gets viciously poked by me, he declares that it is only because his nose is blocked. He says his appetite has gone for a toss and cannot be revived by anything short of aloo-paranthas. He stands with his head buried inside a towel while he steams his insides with a pot of boiling water at the stove. In short, he is quite the baby when a common cold comes a-callin'.

Naturally, I take this opportunity to call into court his borderline hypochondriasis, telling him gleefully that he is just a sucker for attention and just plays to the galleries.

Therefore, it is quite wrong that I am the one who should be sneezing all the bloody time (25 since this morning, at last count), should have a nose that is mistaking itself for one of those marathon athletes and just refuses to quit running, cannot get any sleep and should even sport, gasp, a headache. No, this is all wrong. I am not the patient. I can't be the patient. I am only the poker of fun at patients.

Now, where the hell does M keep the D'Cold anyway?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A Maiden virgin no more!

Things have been pretty hectic since I got back. Adi refuses to let me out of sight for the fear that I may just decide that now is the time I need to also see Pearl Jam or U2 in action, given that I am following the dreams of my youth in my twilight years (thirties, same thing) and need to be watched closely given that I have tasted blood. Consequently, time at the laptop has been strictly rationed.

But first things first, the trip was great. I missed Adi a lot obviously. There was no one to play with the window shutter during the flight, though Mahesh did make a few brave attempts at it. There was no one to be put to sleep as the plane started taxiing (M needs no cajoling, vehicle moves, you turn sideways to say something to him and find him snoring loudly). There were no strollers and diaper bags and toys and other sundry items that will prevent meltdowns and tantrums. It was a little like being back in time - and not least because it was Bangalore - when things were not this insane and definitely nowhere this...full of things, if you know what I mean.

The concert itself was nothing short of awesome. Even M, whose knowledge of Maiden is sketchy at best enjoyed himself tremendously. I was fortunate in that they played songs that I know and love - Wrathchild, Two Minutes to Midnight, Run to the Hills, The Number Of The Beast and my favourite - the 13-minute long Rime Of The Ancient Mariner (based on the poem by Samuel Coleridge that you can read here). Bruce Dickinson turned out to the God that people have always described him to be and I swear I got goosepimples when he started waving the Union Jack during The Trooper. When Eddie came on stage, the crowds went berserk! The energy through the concert had to be felt to be believed but I think the loudest reception was still given to Fear Of The Dark, probably the leveller that brought together the most committed Maidenheads and the casual listener. Given that I am not trained in music, I have no way of knowing whether technically speaking something rocks or sucks . My only arbiter is whether the music speaks to me and in this case, well, it wouldn't shut up!

In the interest of my toddler, I stayed far, far away from moshing. (I know some of you will ask.)

And hey, there were other bands too but I was way too full of anticipation about Maiden to pay any attention to them so there went encouragement for the supporting acts and all that. But Parikrama came on right before Maiden and they were really good. I specially liked their track 'I'm dreaming', I just can't remember which song it reminds me of but it will come to me. I wouldn't mind hearing them again at all.

I have seen Maiden live. I live in a different world. Tra la.

I thought Bangalore has changed. For one the spanking new airport has replaced the one where the ladies from Kemps Corner (it was KC only, wasn't it?) used to give out plastic flowers. That is a definite improvement of course but still nostalgia has a habit of making things appear rosier than they are. The city is more polluted, warmer than I remember it to be and more crowded. My favourite Barista in that beautiful old building at St Marks Road has shut down. Yes, things have changed in the city of my heart.

And then I ran into the auto-wallahs there and figured that the more things change, the more they remain the same. After we got out of the concert, we were just two of the thousands of people trying to woo the auto guys into taking them to their destination. Remember me cribbing about the Blr auto guys earlier? That was the same situation all over again. After being completely shocked at their complete refusal to adhere to the meter (Mumbai really spoils you that way), we quickly figured that this was a seller's market and when we got one novice to agree on a hundred bucks to MG Road as against the going rate of two hundred, we thanked our stars and jumped in. There is a long-winding story about the auto stalling and being stranded at midnight etc but this post is already way too long by my standards so let's just call it a day, shall we?

Just one thing though. Thanks for all the encouraging comments. More of those and I might just make this a monthly exercise.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Why can't I just make up my mind or something?

Off to Bangalore tomorrow for the Iron Maiden concert. Shitting bricks about leaving Adi with grandparents FOR ALMOST AN ENTIRE DAY and trooping off.

Mahesh: You will remember this concert for the rest of your life. He will not remember that we were not around for a night at all.

Me: Yes, but I will remember the fact that I left him and went off to the concert longer than I will remember the concert itself.

And so it goes.

Encouraging, soothing, there-there words to be left in the comments box at once, including you, lurker.

Friday, February 13, 2009

A tale of trunks

More on Adi because after all we've not been talking about him enough.

It's here - the era of taking all sorts of objects to bed. The first of the lot is his toothbrush. He's become a convert to dental hygiene way of life and needs to brush his teeth thrice a day (read, eat toothpaste). Lately his love for the tattered bristles has grown so deep that he has started taking the sodding, sopping thing to sleep because if he lets it out of his sight for even a single moment, we may just use it to brush our own teeth and what a tragedy that would be.

The other day he had a meltdown because he wanted M's toothbrush. After he just wouldn't give up, I finally washed the darn thing and gave it to him (I will do a lot to broker peace). Then I took a picture of him with the brush on my phone and sent it to M titling it 'remember to get a new toothbrush'. M replied saying that the picture was very cute but the toothbrush did not belong to him.

GAH! That could only mean....

...that the toothbrush...

...was the one...

....that was used... clean the toilets!!

Before you have me arrested for child abuse (seriously, for a few moments I was ready to hand over myself to the authorities), please know that it was found that the toothbrush in question was a new one. Why would the toothbrush used for 'other purposes' be kept with our stuff anyway but dude, for a moment my panicked heart was in my mouth. I had to brush my teeth later on to remove the taste.


And then there was swimming day at playschool. Adi did not have swimming trunks so I decided to have him bunk school on that day. Then Isha came over. Now Isha was the sort of kid who would drive our (common) parents bananas with her school-related requests. Whatever teacher asked for was the word of law and could not be messed with. It looks like she hasn't changed much in all these years.

Me: Adi's bunking playschool today.
Isha (horrified): Why?
Me: Swimming day, no trunks
Isha: But why no trunks?
Me: Oh, I tried buying them before our Goa trip but I couldn't find them so I gave up
Isha: How can you just give up?

At this point, Adi's class-teacher (!!) calls to confirm that swimming day is on. I tell her about the swimming trunks problem. She says it's not an issue and he can report in his shorts. Oh cool, I say and hang up.

Me: So that's sorted then. He can go in his shorts.
Isha (aghast): His shorts? But all the other kids will be in their swimming trunks.
Me: Yeah, I guess but he wouldn't know that he's dressed differently.
Isha: Yes, but I would know and you would know.
Me: Uff, don't try to guilt-trip me.
Isha: Poor Adi. You didn't put in enough effort.
Me: Fine, fine! I will make some more effort...

At this point, I send Pramod to check for swimming trunks to Shopper's Stop and a sports equipment store and call up Benetton and make some calls to other moms, including the wonderful Rohini who in her usual generous fashion, offers to give Adi one of Ayaan's brand-new swimming trunks, except that she can only obviously do so after she gets back from work and we need it NOW!

Me: So that's that, I can't get him trunks...
Isha: That's really sad but we've done everything we could. Alright, now show me your new bags so that I can tell you which one I am taking home.

Assessment of bags follows. At one point, Isha notices a dabba on the top shelf of my cupboard.

Isha: Hey bhagwaan, what have you been buying from Amarsons?
Me: That's not mine. Mom left that behind.

LIghtening strikes. I have a stroke of genius. Mom's Amarsons dabba comes to my aid in my moment of crisis. Sure enough, Amarsons does have swimming trunks for toddlers. Soon the purchase has been made and the boy is dressed in swimming trunks with...are you ready for this? of Cars on them!


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Removing the blogging block

I faced something of a mini-blogging block these past few days. It is a dangerous condition and I hope for your sake it's not contagious. I thought the blogging stream had dried up for good. I am feeling somewhat better now, thank you, but I may or may not be back to my original levels of genius. Flowers to be sent to my address.

Right, so I bought a book called 'Don't lose your mind. Lose your weight'. Typically the title itself should have been warning enough but the writer can be credited/blamed for Kareena Kapoor's lithe looks in Tashan (we are reminded of this fact ceaselessly through the book) and I am nothing if not open-minded.

Business Standard in a review of this book says

The book’s flaws are so glaring from page one onward that one hopes that Diwekar’s diets aren’t as flawed. The book is full of anecdotal evidence told so shoddily that even if you are genuinely interested in what Diwekar has to say, the poorly written prose is enough to put you off. For instance, on page 33, Lolo, Kareena’s older sister, actress Karisma says, “Shit ya!!” And then on the next page a sentence reads: “Karisma confessed that she was dabaoing the chips...” Dabaoing is a word that Diwekar is excessively fond of and uses again and again. Writing a book on a film star’s diet isn’t a good enough excuse to write as inadequately, and using such tired language, as the two instances given above illustrate.

I could not put it better myself. Have you ever rented a movie so bad that you had to see it on fast forward? This is that movie, except that it's a book and there is no fast forward button. Her lack of respect for the written word is nothing short of horrifying.

I am sure she made sense as far as her weight loss principles are concerned. I just did not have the patience to go through it all. Why did I not just junk the book? Oh that's because of my disorder of not being able to shake off the guilt of leaving a book, any book unfinished. And to think I have an unread Bill Bryson waiting for me. I need help.

Talking of weight-loss, guess who is on a diet? Our very own Mahesh babu. He has declared that he will lose his paunch before too long. This declaration has been followed up with meticulous excel sheets that record calories, contain complicated formulae to calculate BMI and energy requirements and deficit required to cause weight loss. Basically they do everything except going to the gym and working out for you. (Right now I have an image of several excel sheets marching in a row to a gym, one takes up the dumb-bells, another starts running on the treadmill and one goes over to the hot girl to chat her up).

Poor M. Since he went on a diet, he says he cannot think of anything except food. I had two apples today, he told me mournfully in the evening, normally I don't even have one. Apparently, he has been dreaming of all sorts of pakvaans that he doesn't even like. Poor M.


M's parents are in town. They had hoped that Adi would spend all their time with them. I had prayed for the same. Naturally, Adi doesn't want to leave Mom's side for a moment since their arrival. If this is just a clingy phase, the timing could not be worse. I was hoping to catch up on some things while leaving him in their doting presence but he declares 'Mama chahiye' (this chahiye business was cute till a point, I swear) and follows it up with copious tears if I leave him for more than ten minutes with them. Augh, there goes my plan of depositing him on their collective laps and taking off for the nearest pub (oh, dirty word) at twelve noon.


We watched 'Luck by chance' over the weekend. As usual, I will not offer my opinion because as most parents deprived of movies, we are just so thrilled with the thought of actually going to a theater and buying Pepsi and popcorn and watching something without a child suddenly changing channels and making you see Aastha channel (seriously, every time) instead of HBO (maybe he's trying to tell us something) that we don't actually care about the movie anyway. This too shall pass and what a pity that would be.


Saturday, February 7, 2009

Yaar, this is not fair

What is with this Farhan Akhtar, huh?

How can a man have a father in an award-winning lyricist, mother in an award-winning script writer, step-mother in an award-winning actress and sister in a promising director and be really, really, ridiculously good-looking and be married to a first-rate, successful hairstylist and be a talented film maker and get to act in a almost-cult film and have something of a sense of humour and carry a half-way decent tune (heck, to Adi's discerning ears, he sounds damn good!) and get to host his own show and have two adorable daughters and effortlessly make all clothes look good.....kaise, kaise, kaise?

Is this a case of Bhagwan jab deta hai etc or should I follow the Malcolm Gladwell school of thought and assume that his success is because of his family and not in addition to it? Read Outliers if you want to know what I mean.

But of course I should say hai, kahin nazar na lag jaaye at this point. Consider it said.

Friday, February 6, 2009

What happened to a simple 'how are you'?

The first thing anyone communicates when they meet you is their assessment of your weight situation. Critical visual examination of belly, arms, hips, thighs and other fat-accumulating parts of the anatomy, numerous as they are is followed by either a sympathetic 'you've put on!' (put on what? airs? clothes? shoes? don't say, you naughty thing) or an accusing 'you've reduced' (I read somewhere once that this phrase made them feel like a sauce...I couldn't agree more).

If you thought that was personal, you should be in my shoes these days. To my acute discomfort I have discovered that now that Adi is nearing two, people I hardly know have done their family-planning math and feel perfectly free in asking me when the second one is coming along. Of course I have had my fertility status under scrutiny in the past. I think that starts pretty much as soon as the pheras are done and the happy couple is accorded permission to have sex by all and sundry. 'Now, you must quickly have a family' is I believe the guarded way to say it. One looks at the advisor's feet in a suitably bahu-like fashion, hoping the silence is understood to be coyness and not the desire to throttle the perpetrator.

But now, this candour is getting alarmingly pronounced, perhaps triggered by my evident experience with childbirth, said experience running in circles around me at that point. When is the second one coming along, they ask. Now what about me could invite this question? I flatter myself that it could be how cool, calm, collected, composed and alliteratively talented I look that the need to add a newborn to the picture just has to be verbalized but I could be mistaken. Maybe they just want to see more of me. Maybe they want to see if I can do it. Maybe nosiness is the new must-have accessory that goes with bad behaviour. Who is to say?

Maybe I should direct them all to my blog?

Is this just something that we Indians do, I wonder. People staying in/from other countries, do feel free to contribute. Specially you, dear reader from Japan, I'd really like to know what you think.

Anyway, now on to things of earth-shaking importance - would you call an upside down topsy-turvy a turvy-topsy? Now you know what's keeping me up nights. Other than Adi of course.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

All in a night's work

Bounce off walls
Resist every attempt to put to bed
Furiously suck thumb
Fall asleep (ha!)
Kick off the covers
Locate father's spinal column
Proceed to kick it hard
Kick off covers - who put them back anyway?
Tanni! Tanni! Tanni! - scream for water thirty times in the time it takes mom to reach out for bottle and put to lips
Identify the only square milimeter on mother's stomach that is not well-padded and give it a mighty kick
Squirm, throwing arms and legs in all directions
Kick off covers - will they never learn?
Do a 180 degree turn on the bed and now pound at parents' faces
Give a head butt to dad, taking precise aim for the kidneys, ignore yowl of pain
More Tanni! Tanni! Tanni!
Be ostensibly troubled by invisible mosquito
Scratch self
Send parents on wild-goose chase, except that the goose is a mosquito
Diaper leak
Kick violently, scream non-stop as diaper change takes place at 3 am
Look for exact nook in mother's arm, get upset if said nook is not provided by aching arm
Kick off covers
Repeat till morning

It's such work being a toddler. Tough to get even get a good night's rest. Yawwwn, later peeps.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I love the world!

I absolutely love this promo for the Discovery channel and sing along every single time it comes on air. Go ahead, watch it. It is a sure-fire mood lifter. At some level, I think I just agree with what it says. The world truly is an awesome place (and not least because I am in it).

I have seen some of this earth. I can't wait to see the rest. Let the recession end and I will put on my boots again to go to,, Bhutan. Oh man, I give up. So much to see, so little time.

Where do you want to go to next? The place that haunts you in your dreams and calls out to you like no other? The place you are convinced is your other home?

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A new haircut!

I have chopped off my hair and am much pleased about the same. The appointment with this particular stylist was very tough to obtain. I felt like a producer waiting for the reigning diva of Bollywood to give me dates for my celluloid masterpiece. Finally, her assistant called to say that she is finally available about ten days from then. Will you be there, she asked. Of course, of course, I said and turned my whole schedule on it's head to make it for the coveted appointment (which is to say that I postponed lunch on that day by a couple of hours).

The salon as expected was full of really cool people. The salons in Bandra always are. The girls are always slim and trendily dressed. The music is always upbeat and somewhat eclectic. The decor is retro, bringing about much nostalgia as you look at the framed film posters from the amazing eighties and the rickshaw-wallah chic of plastic flowers and jhaalars. And if you are in your thirties, there is always that dreadful question lurking at the back of your mind - am I too old for this place? That done, the assistant informed me that the stylist was running a little behind schedule. Um, hum, hee, haw, I responded intelligently and asked Pramod to fetch my laptop, not wanting to miss out on my writing (middle of creative juice overflow and all that, what would you know, you, you creative pleb?). The salon was wi-fi enabled, I noticed (as in, my laptop noticed as it went berserk asking for the password and user-id). The internet will not me be for even a second, you see? We are inseparable.

The stylist got at my hair soon after. She hacked this way and that, teased some and tousled some more. And finally, I emerged from behind the shrubbery that was passing off as my hair for many, many months. It is never an easy decision to cut off the length. Especially me, who spent all her childhood years sporting the same generic style called a boy-cut (uff, the looks I would get at school after another one of my trips to the hack-happy nai) and my supposedly rebellious youth in the company of men who wanted me to have lambe baal. I am sort of stuck in between wanting long hair and not quite wanting it, if you know what I mean (and of course you don't and who can blame you?).

But this stylist seemed to understand my dilemma. Without my telling her, she seemed to know that the oestrogen-fuelled hair spurt from the pregnancy was finally over and I was ready for a new look while bearing in mind that I was after all one numbers ek bachhe ki maa and needed Adi (and to a lesser degree Mahesh) to recognize me when I went back home. While on the topic of pregnancy hair, my friend J feels that I do pregnancy really well. Your hair, your skin, P, it's fantastic when you're preggers, she informes me, you should do it all the time. What about the fact that I look like a beached whale weight-wise, I ask her. Just, you know, lose it or something, she says breezily. Ah, right, now why didn't I think of that?

But the stylist, she was a very clever professional underneath her faux dreadlocks and amazingly intricate tattooes. She claimed that chopping off my ultra-heavy tresses gave her arms a good workout but she kept at it anyway. When she was done, I was in love. With her and my new look.

Alright, now I cannot see very well because Adi has broken my glasses. Sigh, there is only so much that a stylist can do to make one feel younger, hipper (do they still use words like hip out there?) and cooler. Then reality hits home.

P.S. Pictures, pictures, you say? I am unclear about my picture policy on this blog, as you may have noticed, much like everything else in my life.But you should know that I sent pictures to my sisters and some friends and the response was great. After they got over the slightly deranged expression, that is. I explained that was my attempt at a smile while trying to take my own picture with the phone. Technology can be very cruel.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

New babies and other fun

This is a good day. In so many ways.

I found out that two of my dear friends, PG of Purple Homes and Aneela of Gol Kamra have had their babies. I will spend a lot of time cackling wildly as they try to make sense of this parenting thing later on. But right now, I am just flush with mush, baby! This is so awesome. Hop across to their blogs and do load them with good wishes so that when they do get back to blogging they have all your lovin' waiting for them.

And since I am nothing if not a Jumper From One Thing To Another, I have my new Wii in the house! M's parents have arrived and they came bearing this awesome piece of gameness. What is better is that I have already dethroned the reigning video games champion in this household and made him cry uncle (at least in the bowling game). After I defeated him, I made my mother-in-law play with me and after she had conceded defeat I made my father-in-law play next. Every member of the Ramanathan family has been witness to my superior gaming skills and life as I mentioned earlier is good.

Of course I had to have Adi attached to one hip as I bowled away but I think it just added to the momentum. No problem, I am a multi-tasker.

Oh, I want to see the new babies so very much.

Chalo ab bhaago, First Lady of Indian television aa rahi hai.

I am seriously fearing for this blog. I mean, I try to disguise it as a parenting blog and all that but everyone knows that the central premise is essentially to make fun of as many people in as little time as possible. Now with with all these snotty Padma Sri peoples taking offense at what piddly little bloggers like me are saying elsewhere, I better keep my apology ready. So, in case you are one of those people who have felt demeaned and humiliated and insulted by what I have written here, I want you to know that -

  • I don't mean a word of what I said. Insincerity is one of my shining qualities.
  • I will not repeat whatever it is that I have said. I know that you got it at the word go.
  • I don't even know what libel means. I thought it was label misspelt.
  • I am not a wikiphile. If I am, I will seek rehab.
  • I don't watch news channels. I watch only Channel V in Adi's eternal pursuit of the latest Bollywood songs.
  • When I say F**K YOU, B****, I mean that I hold you in the greatest esteem possible.
Of course I refuse to get upset by her, there are two new babies to be thrilled about. Tra la!