It's not one thing. It's many.

I’m back! And what a comeback it’s going be. I haven’t a clue what I’m going to write about now.

Well, I finished reading two books last week. One was “May I Hebb Your Attention Pliss” by Greatbong, and the other was “Dork” by Sidin Vadukut. I’m totally ODing on books by bloggers-turned-writers, it looks like. But isn’t that the natural thing to do? You’ve read them earlier, and you’ve liked them. And with all the hard work that goes into getting oneself published, you can only expect a better read. On the flip side though, I’m sure some such writers regret not having a fresh slate to start. No matter what, the book will be compared to the blog.

Coming back to the books, though, I loved both of them. While MIHYAP is the snort-on-your-coffee kind of satire, Dork is more Oh-no!-he-didn’t! brand of humour. MIHYAP comments on so many things that make up our  growing-up years, and you sort of nod along, when you’re not snorting out your coffee, that is! In case you’re not a terrorist/orkut friend-maker/B-grade movie producer or director or actor/politician, this book will serve as the much-deserved bitchslap to people in all the aforementioned categories – something you always wanted to deliver. However, do stand warned that B, C and D grade movies of Bollywood get substantial airtime in the book, and if you aren’t “with it”, you would be VERY clueless for more than a bit of it. About Dork, I have not been a very regular follower of Whatay.com, but I did read a couple of reviews on other blogs and wanted to read it. Everywhere I asked for it, it was “sold out”. The Bangalore airport bookshop said “Dark naat av-label, saary mam”. The Mumbai airport bookshop said “No ma’am, whatever is there, is there on display.” The Delhi airport said “Blank stare”. Airport bookshops, with their stupid narrow aisles, suck. QED. I finally found a copy in one of the Crosswords in Mumbai.  Now, your first instinct after reading the cover summary would be to prepare yourself to sympathize with Varghese, the protagonist – in the same way you might have for Sharman Joshi of 3 Idiots. But by the end of the book, you will have – let’s just say – very mixed feelings. You gulp down chapter after chapter of the book, wide-eyed like the mother who just saw her kid throw her favourite crystal vase out of the window, followed by a grin, and then another antique piece of silverware in quick succession before she’s had the time to react. It being dangerously close to my personal experiences in “a mid-size international consulting firm” office culture, I was chuckling for the most part of it. I finished reading it in 5 hours straight, and now I’m looking forward to the next book in the trilogy!

Also, with the Dantewada tragedy, resurfaced Arundhati Roy – ever eager to beat up the Indian government. To me, she is someone who makes it a point to stand up for the offbeat because it is so offbeat, and therefore, oh so intellectual. I’m all for standing up for the littlest issue that needs recognition, but not at the cost of common sense taking permanent leave. It’s something of a disease – this urge to fight the basic common sense with its counterpart i.e. the nonsense, and oh, if it’s representing the voice of the “poor” and the “underdog”, then you’re definitely a noble soul. It is totally the mob mentality: beat up the truck guy even if the Maruti 800 made every effort possible to ram itself in and blow up. So, Ms. Roy meets the “red revolutionaries” to tell us what their side of the story is. I say, we don’t need another side to this story. It’s a planned massacre for godssake. An internal security threat for the nation. Not your ban-public-smoking-or-not debate. Sometimes, there is just one side, and you fucking need to see it like it is. As far as the linked article is concerned, what I find most puke-worthy is Ms. Roy’s attempt at romanticizing this “revolution” that is clearly not all struggling-displaced-villagers-and-capitalism-victims but an armed insurgency, with stupid details of the starry night and the dark forest under which they sing their anthems of revolution, as if it is supposed to be some sort of a famed cult. Given a chance, she would have written about how musical the showering of bullets was, at the Taj during 26/11 – a true song of justice.

In fact, sweeping generalizations seem to be the fad with everyone these days. The anti-underdog or the pro-establishment argument is so uncool, that everyone feeling less than privileged is sure to have a few others trooping behind them in a row. What might help here is if we get our facts together before we pull out our favourite khadi outfit and slip into krantikaari mode. Please. There’s nothing as painful and tiring as trying to convince an ill-informed and super-opinionated self-proclaimed world-transformer that what they’re saying is really a lot of jumbled words picked up from “various sources” that have, in fact, made conflicting statements on the issue. Also, it’s a super-tough exercise in self-restraint because all you want to say is “You’re a dumbass.”

On a lighter (perhaps not) note, I have a personal grudge to share (aren’t you lucky?). First, tell me if it is ok if I do the following:

  • I walk upto a khakhra-crunching garba-dancing Gujju, and say “All vegetarians are wimps, because you guys don’t know how to appreciate a pizza with ham.”
  • You tell me that your birthday was yesterday, and I then say “All people born in April, at least those I know are control freaks.”
  • To make small talk with Mr. Rao and Ms. Subramanian over office lunch, I exclaim that “If it’s so hot in Delhi, Uttaranchal, Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand, it must be so hot in all Madrasi/southern states, no?”
  • I finally proceed to catch a colleague who’s leaving office early today, and say, “All you lucky married women with kids, always managing to leave early early huh?”

 Those who do not think that even one of the statements above qualifies as a “ha ha let’s chat up” thing, please stop telling IIM grads that “All IIM grads / In general, IIM grads / IIM grads I have worked with earlier are soooooo arrogant, and suchhhhhhh know-it-alls.”

 If you have an issue with me, tell me directly. If you do not have, I am not interested in talking/ hearing about other people who might have unfortunately been from the same institute/ group of institutes. Also, it is not smartly casual/ casually smart to throw such statements to point out something you desperately want to (in case you have a problem with me).

Personally, I put up with a person for one whole year telling me that “IIM grads were useless and arrogant”, keeping my trap shut and rarely objecting to such generalization, and when I did, I did so most politely (lest it be considered “arrogant”, y’know. Circular reference.) It might be of note here that this person thought that they were far too busy to spend time to register for a couple of admin modules at the workplace, and routinely made their juniors book cars/ call up drivers/ take printouts etc. for them. Now, however, I tell such people that it is stupid and *familiar word alert* arrogant on their part to assume thus. What can I say, over the years, I have adopted “Do unto others what they do unto you.” (Though I know not what “unto” really means. And it does not have an MS Word synonym.)

Multiple rants end. Excruciatingly personal update begins.

Last weekend was supposed to be complete bliss. Supposed to be. I was to go home, to my Delhi. I was to park myself on the bed, not move a finger and down loads and loads of food. But life had other plans. Got hit by severe food poisoning within 12 hours of landing in the city, and have made a mental note that Delhi heat + seafood = Never again. All my plans of hogging on momos and aloo tikkis were quashed. It was cruel. And it has also managed to hit my Healthy Eating plan for a DLF maximum. I am not using it as an excuse, I was really on such a plan for 2 weeks before this, and now with all the khichri overload, it’s not really a healthy diet. It’s more like fodder for survival. Pathetic. Considering all this, a lot of staying home and watching IPL has happened. A lot. I am still supporting Delhi Daredevils, the recent debacle level performance against Kings XI notwithstanding.

In other news, between mad work-related travelling (the husband’s), insane hours (mine), and the incessant need to catch live matches (his, again), being married is something we’re reminded of, only when I have to set reminders to call up not one but two sets of parents now.

What’s up with you, bleeple? (Twitter people = tweeple, so blogging people  = bleeple. Geddit?)

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11 thoughts on “It's not one thing. It's many.

  1. Okie, so i sat down and took my time to read this one. And I am happy i did, because I rarely read long posts… 😛 Loved reading it, and the way you have connected all the disjointed points. There are genralisations everywhere and it really gets the goat. I have heard things in office, because I had a love marriage imagine! All the best with dealing with all of it, hope you get well soon and can eat all the tikkis you so want.
    And I like beeple. 😀

    • For having a love marriage, someone made some remark at work? People seriously don’t know their limits!

      Thanks for wishing me tikkis anyway.. I swear I’m blackmailing someone to courier them to me from Delhi, I need all the luck with that 😀

      • I am sure they will make their way to you! I had written about my colleagues and their issues with my cross-religion, love marriage, will really have to dig deep to find it, might even be on the old blog….They really give me a good laugh now.

  2. Great post. I love your ranting style man. Every time I sit down to rant, I realize the unhappiness is most nebulous and unputdownable in a form that inspires people to read it. And if people don’t want to read your rants, oh-what’s-the-point 😀

    • You said it! Blogging is a medium I totally use to crib about things nobody in my real life wants to hear me go on and on about. Really, if I picked up the topic of Arundhati Roy with the husband (who I think I shall call Chuck on the blog from now on, like in Chuck Norris) will go “You know you’re jealous of the woman’s interesting meeting-maoists job. Now get a life, and let’s watch Salman Khan dance to Tera Hi Jalwa.” This may give you an idea where the extra edge to my ranting comes from 😀

  3. First time here and I must add that I have never said this before – this is one of the best rants that I have read, so much so that it didn’t sound like a rant 😉

    Usually, half-way into a personal / rant post, you would have lost my attention. Here I am commenting, is a testimony to that. I am regular reader of GreatBong’s blog and have been meaning to get his book, your review (if I may call it that) seem to re-affirm that.

    I completely agree with you on Arundati Roy, loved this bit – “Given a chance, she would have written about how musical the showering of bullets was, at the Taj during 26/11 – a true song of justice.”

  4. Pingback: In Which We Inflict Boredom Upon Thee « Snippets from a Dark Comedy called Life

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