Saturday, 24 December 2011

But they *do* say the darndest things!

At my old job, we conducted sessions where we'd go to a few schools, show the classes a few films and then talk to the kids. I still remember the first session I took at Navy Children School in Colaba. There I was, a clueless just-out-of-college-girl with an intense fear of public speaking (even when most of the public was one-third my height) paired with another almost equally clueless girl who wasn't very sure she even liked children.

But I've come a long way since then. Okay six months. Shut up. But I have learned a few things.

Things the sessions taught me: 

1) During the first couple of sessions you conduct when you are completely at sea about what to expect with a partner who's sharing your boat, a kid will fall and scrape his knee, a girl will throw up and a boy will poop his pants.

2) Once Santa Claus interrupts your class, the kids go wild. Unless the games mistress has a whistle.

3) If you can whistle using two fingers, you're officially cool. If you can't whistle, tell them you love dancing but never in public. Apparently that makes  you cool too.

4) Children cannot walk into a room that has a projector facing a screen without breaking out into a shadow puppet show.

5) A ninth grade boy will call you Aunty just to mess with your head.

6) Never shake a kid's hand or sign his notebook howmuchever he begs and pleads. His friends will notice and you will be mobbed and end up being stuck in the room for twenty minutes.

7) If you ask first graders why people need the sun, one boy will excitedly raise his hand to answer, jump up and down yelling "Me! Me!" and when picked on will go on to tell everybody how his grandfather died in an accident where a car set his car on fire.

8) When an Australian asks third graders to guess where she's from based on her accent and a boy very sincerely and very innocently asks "Are you lesbian?", it's impossible to stop laughing hysterically without thinking of dead puppies.

God, I'm going to miss those kids.

Friday, 23 December 2011

Title? What title?

So I just found this post from way back when (okay, August) which I meticulously wrote but then forgot to publish because I probably got distracted just as I was about to update. I have the attention span of a goldfish.

Struggling to open a BEST bus window counts as my daily dose of exercise okay? By the way, why does nobody offer to help? Do they not see how difficult it is? I did it all by myself today and sat there feeling all smug. For about five minutes after which it started to rain. But I had opened that window and dammit it would remain open! So what if the right side of my body was getting soaked? It was the drench of victory! Victory of man over machine. Okay woman over glass and steel or iron or aluminum or whatever that window was made of but still.

Is ignoring work to blog acceptable? What about reaching work late because you couldn't leave home without finishing your book?

Memories of my graduation ceremony make me wish I had a Pensieve. Ultra sleepiness makes me want to have a water balloon fight. Does sleepblogging count as drunkblogging? It should. I get pretty sleepdrunk.

I watched Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2 and it was really terrible. But I still sobbed through most of it anyway.

Wearing a convocation robe made me feel like someone straight out of Hogwarts. I strutted across college like Snape and very seriously considered stealing my robe.

My mom knows someone who refuses to carry an umbrella even when it's pouring. He thinks that if cows and dogs and chickens don't need umbrellas to survive the monsoons, neither does he. Why do I not know such interesting people? Mom gets to sit at work and smile at John Abraham while I get to stay back late at work and miss ogling Abhay Deol and Farhan Akhtar.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

The City Of Dreams?

Today, The Times of India had this splashed across the second page.

Excuse Me, Where's My Mumbai?
This city means many things to many people.
City of dreams, financial nerve centre, city that never sleeps, entertainment capital cradle of cricket and much more.
All apt descriptions for sure. But not enough to hide the one question that everyone wants answered but few dare ask.
What about us?
We, the citizens, who live, work, sweat and struggle to give the city its many colourful descriptions? We, with our desperate instinct for survival that's conveniently airbrushed as the "spirit" of the city.
What about a Mumbai where I can simply walk down a street without stepping into something I shouldn't. Or take a long deep breath without being petrified about waking up sick the next morning. Where I can race my kid to the nearest tree. Or commute to work without spending half my working life in traffic. And the other half paying through my nose for a roof above my head.
The truth about Mumbai is also its greatest lie. It's a city that can give us all that we work for but is hard pressed to give us all that we live for.
So there's a Mumbai for business and a Mumbai for careers. There's a Mumbai for entertainment and a Mumbai for investment. There's even a Mumbai for stray dogs and a Mumbai for party animals.
But is there really a Mumbai for me?

I thought it was just me. Just me who's slowly becoming disenchanted by this city I once loved. I used to think this city, my city, was perfect. Now I'm becoming nostalgic for a life I've never lived; for trees instead of concrete, for a home instead of a house, for walks instead of runs, for the quality of life instead of the mundanity of existence.

There is a place where the sidewalk ends
And before the street begins,
And there the grass grows soft and white,
And there the sun burns crimson bright,
And there the moon-bird rests from his flight
To cool in the peppermint wind.

Let us leave this place where the smoke blows black
And the dark street winds and bends.
Past the pits where the asphalt flowers grow
We shall walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And watch where the chalk-white arrows go
To the place where the sidewalk ends.

Yes we'll walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And we'll go where the chalk-white arrows go,
For the children, they mark, and the children, they know
The place where the sidewalk ends.
-Shel Silverstein

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

The fact that I'm hungry has nothing to do with this post.

I'm a hungry, hungry hippo.

I think travelling by first class for two months spoiled me. I was mildly terrified of the ladies compartment today. Did you know that if you have to get down at Kandivali station, you have to shovepushscratch your way to the door two stations in advance? And then hordes of women invade your personal space and  touch you inappropriately? How do people live like this?!

There was a lady clutching the doorway who almost fell off and had to be pulled in by three women. But does she heave a dramatic sigh of relief at her narrow escape and scramble inside the train like a normal person? No, she decides that carrying on hanging from the doorway and laughing like a banshee is a better way to celebrate.

I thought the universe was trying to make me feel better by getting me a rickshaw the moment I stepped out of the station. Then my rickshaw ride turned out to be a religious experience. I don't know what kind of murder-suicide pact my driver had in his head but the only thing I had in mine was "Please don't let me die, please don't let me die, ple - OH MY GOD THAT TRUCK ALMOST CRUSHED MY KNEE - please don't let me die." I swear my hands were shaking as I handed him his fare.

And to top it off, as I was clutching the rod in sheer terror and seriously considering cutting my losses and just jumping out of the vehicle, a man old enough to be my father whistled at me. I officially give up on the suburbs.

Monday, 7 November 2011

Do Suburbs Cause Loss Of Sanity Or Does Loss Of Sanity Cause Suburbs?

I'm back after a life and a half and Blogger is upto shenanigans. What is with all these fancyschmancy changes? I preferred the old Blogger with its messy clutter. Now it looks too neat and clean looking. I distrust this sort of tidiness. Which is another reason my house always looks like The Wicked Witch of the West decided to cycle through it with a twister in tow.

Speaking of upside-down houses, that's what mine is right now. I moved to the very distant Western Suburbs about a month ago and my house is still full of boxes! The blame for my lack of posts can be shared by my laziness (no it doesn't want to say hello, it's taking a nap) and the fact that I had no internet for a month and a half.

To make myself feel better about living an hour and a half away from my old life, I've become scarily obsessed with decorating my house. No, seriously, I get dreams about it. And then they turn into random nightmares where a clock turns into an Excel sheet and tries to strangle me.

I'm telling you, the suburbs are turning me into a nutjob. As if there weren't enough here to begin with. A couple of weeks ago, I went to a Jain mall. I spent about fifteen minutes stomping around the food court looking for meat and finally discovered that there were only two counters serving chicken; one of which was called The Non-Veg Kitchen which I decided to skip because it looked like it served dodgy pigeon meat instead. Succumbing to the inevitable conclusion of a vegetarian meal, I eureka-ed when I spotted an Italian counter. That feeling quickly went away when I saw that their idea of Italian didn't include either pasta or pizza but just papad with tomatoes and onions. I am never stepping foot in that mall again.

The journey from my house to the nearest station takes a good twenty minutes. On the way, there is a joint called Fooodiiees with exactly that number of vowels.

Once, as I was looking outside the window of my bus, some random guy yelled "Wassup!?" at me.

To fix my chocolate craving, I went to the store near my house to ask if they had Nutella. The attendant nodded enthusiastically and gave me a box of Nutrella, which I'm pretty sure is just some pseudo soy crap pretending to be edible. When I slowly told him I wanted the chocolate spread you apply on bread, he looked at me like I was the crazy person. I was this close to giving up on this place. But last week, I found restaurants that deliver chicken (thank you burrp!) and life is good again.

Do you have any ideas for decorating my new house? Please tell me or I will never think the house looks perfect and I will keep looking up more ideas which will probably lead to recurrent murder-by-home-decor nightmares which will definitely lead to me being declared clinically insane.

Oh also, if you know anywhere I could get cool art prints or you make some yourself, please let me know because I've become obsessed with them. Etsy has great ones but I might have to sell a body part to get a few shipped here.

Another last also, I need to find a large wooden bookshelf. My books are currently lying in boxes and I keep buying more to dull the pain of their homelessness. My old books took up four cartons. Four. After the moving guys tried to convince me to leave some behind and were met with my horror-stricken expression, I think they might have sneakily tried to throw some off my balcony.

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

But the Weasley home had garden gnomes

This house hunting business is sucking the soul right out of me. And cleaning the house to reduce the number of things we have to pack is even more frustrating! I get so emotionally attached to random inanimate objects that the pile of crap just keeps getting bigger. This mental instability is definitely genetic. My mom once mourned for an entire day and spent the rest of the week harassing me over a very old stapler I'd taken to college and forgotten to get back.

I don't understand why none of my friends are getting married. Everybody else knows about-to-be-married people. What is wrong with my friends that they harbour absolutely no marital aspirations? Do I have to make profiles for them myself?

I don't think arranged marriages were made for me. First of all I have to be able to tolerate the person enough to not throw a chair at his head. Second, he has to lovingly accept my mental patient status. Also, I've decided I want to marry a Banerjee. What are the chances of getting this three-in-one offer?

Why are people who think social rules are stupid largely called weird? Who makes these rules? Why can't someone go watch a movie alone? Or refuse to carry a cellphone? Why can't grown ups call in bored to work instead of sick and spend the day making blanket forts? Wearing too little makes people go haw; wearing too much makes people go huh. You want to be a writer but you end up making presentations. You should be teaching kids to read and fly kites and instead you're trying to sell fairness creams (and your soul). People should be happy but people want bighuge houses with funparty lives. What to do?

Whenever I start thinking serious thoughts, I look at pictures of donuts (well, almost), think about bubble wrap being sold at Landmark (56 bucks for a roll!) and wonder what everything in existence would look like if it was all in one place. I also think about the three ducks I met and named in Kerala. I wonder how Pondi, Cherry and Vishakapatnam are doing.

I shall call him Squishy and he shall be mine and he shall be my Squishy.

If you've already watched the video because I forced you to, you can just watch it again because it's worth it okay? Okay.

Friday, 24 June 2011

Pacman is the spawn of Satan. Yeah I said it.

I got off the bus this morning and the first thing I wanted to do was drop to my knees and kiss the ground for making it out in one piece. People responsible for public transportation should not be allowed to relive their failed childhood dreams of becoming F1 drivers.

I wish they taught us to play Pacman at school. I could really have used the practice. I played all day and I still suck at it. My coworker preferred Angry Birds on her laptop. Would it be unethical if I downloaded Chrome just to play Angry Birds at work?

My Hindi was insulted by a woman at work yesterday who suggested I should switch back to speaking in English since I spoke so slowly in Hindi. I've been pretty proud of my Hindi in recent times so that was a complete slap in the face.

I am such an office klutz. There are these long dangly things on the doorway near the boss's cabin. They look eclectic and pretty and all but every time I walk through that doorway, I get my hair entangled in them. Every single time. And then I have to struggle to disentangle myself trying not to look like a complete idiot all the while hoping my boss or her son don't notice.

And today after I had a serious grown up office talk with my boss's son, I walked into the door on my way out of the room.

I need to carry this bag as a warning to everybody around me.

And you need to listen to this song. (Courtesy Bones)

You're welcome.

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Really? REALLY? Really.

Oh look. I'm just going to blog twice in one day 'cause

Okay so I'm a sucker for tacky songs (I'm South Indian but I don't know what they're saying okay?), terrible (you say terrible, I say hilarious) movies and cheesy reality shows (even I stopped watching that one two years ago).

Judging by the very first episode of Just Dance I watched last night, I'll have to add another reality show to my must-watch list. I love watching dance shows (I'm an award show junkie just because they have so many people dancing *hides face*) and I also love Farah Khan (she's my imaginary best friend). Put those two together and you know I'm going to be glued to the TV every weekend.

That show made me laugh so hard that I'd have choked on Pepsi had I been consuming any.

Star moment of the show no. 1 (See? I'm plugging the channel also. They should just give me a job there. Preferably as Farah Khan's gal pal)
A nineteen year old guy with a medium-sized tummy came onstage with a (in Farah's words) Wonder Woman star on his forehead and started belly dancing. YES. What was truly scary was that he actually could shake what his momma gave him. Just a little bit.

Star moment of the show no. 2
A person who looked very much like an engineering student (how many of you have I offended?) came onstage and touched all four feet of the two Hritik Roshan cutouts that were behind him. He then talked about how much he looked forward to unleashing his inner crazy while dancing and went on to do exactly that.

Star moment of the show no. 3
A guy walked in, said "I love you so much ma'm" to a horrified Farah, gave her a melted Dairy Milk bar ("Oh it melted! You're so hot, the chocolate melted.") and when asked his name said "Ashish. Naam toh suna hi hoga." Her reaction? "Why do my fans have to be the crazy ones?"

What I don't like about this show is the ludicrous amount of fakeness they expect us to digest and the elevated sense of superstardom they've thrust on Hritik Roshan. Getting to meet him is supposedly the specialest of special moments in every single person's life. If the contestants qualify, they get a bracelet with the initials HR - which made me roll my eyes three separate times. And they refer to him being godlike on multiple occasions. God of dance this, god of dance that - oh SHUT UP.

What I like is watching fellow rhythmically challenged people on this show. Hey at least I don't showoff my lack of dancing skills on national television.

Friday, 17 June 2011

This post is bananas B-A-N-A-N-A-S

Me and my workmate had a gigantic pile of work which made me just want to mentally slap everybody across their faces. But instead I chose to laugh hysterically at honking cars, squawking parrots and my grumpy co-worker. She very seriously thought that the stress had broken my brain (I was kind of afraid of that myself) and very helpfully called me a freak.

And then right in the middle of this very important thing that we had been working on for a very long time which seemed to be magically multiplying because it didn't seem to be getting over at all and was slowly but surely driving us both bananas (B-A-N-A-N-A-S), this happens

Where is the K3G love I ask you? Do you know how unbelievably hilarious Shah Rukh and Kajol were in that movie? It would have been an instant stress buster! But no, I'm a strange person.

It's okay though because she gives me chocolate and thinks I'm thin.

In Harry Potter related news, you have to watch this or your life will remain meaningless (much as mine has become since I found out they've cancelled Sub of the Day at Subway and now charge for the cheese).

Has your mind been sufficiently blown?

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

"Life is filled with ups and downs but most of the time I'm going sideways."

I don't understand why there aren't more ghosts in the world. When I die I very seriously plan on haunting everybody I know. Also people I don't know. And Abhishek Bachchan.

No, really. I could come back from the dead and help fight crime. I could be some sort of supernatural superhero. Or I could work with a hot cop partner. I would totally watch that show.

I've decided I'm just going to like every single person who has big feet. Do you realize how emotionally traumatizing it is to shop for shoes that size? I had to have my mine ordered. Specially ordered!

I think buses defy all kinds of logic by being early when I'm late and then refusing to turn up for an hour when I'm early. But they've been behaving themselves lately so I'm not going to boycott them.

You know we should just give up buses altogether. Just hire jet planes. I used to make ones made of paper at my previous workplace. We used to toss them across our desks. One of them accidentally hit my boss. She just asked us to aim better and spent the better part of the morning ducking.

Using shall in a sentence makes me feel fancy. I shall now eat croissants and drink tea. I like coffee but it isn't as fancy as tea. Only the masses drink coffee. The classes drink tea. I want to end this with a rhyme but I won't. (We shall see.)

I make up random nonsensical poetry in the bus because I have nothing to do. But then I forget them all by the time I get home. (Boo.)

Why is it smartypants and not smartyhat? The head is where the smart is no? (Drat!)

I don't know how to get out of this loop de loop I've created. (A monster! A monster!) [I don't know why I said that] {How many brackets can I get away with?} /Does this count as a bracket?\

So I'm just going to end with this.

I used to love this show!

Thursday, 9 June 2011

"Parents should come with instructions."

You know those friends who don't talk for ages and then meet randomly and feel like they've never been apart? That's the kind of relationship my blog and me share. So even if the last time I talked to it (I don't know whether my blog is a girl or a boy. What do you think?) was last Christmas, I'm still its friend. But not that kind of friend it could call at 11 p.m. because I would be sleeping. Why is going to sleep early socially frowned upon? I like sleeping early. People who don't get enough sleep are always grumpy.

I'm done with college. Convocation's in a couple of months. I have a full time job. I almost feel like a grown-up. But then I pop virtual balloons and sing Bohemian Rhapsody with my workmates and that scary feeling goes away. This one girl at work can sing the lyrics to Baby Got Back at warp speed. I seriously think she has superpowers.

I'm also thinking about starting a book review blog. Then I can ignore two blogs instead of one. I went to Landmark to get my friend earphones for his birthday and ended up buying two books instead. I'm a bad friend but I'm a pretty good bookworm.

I've also been reading comics (people really are cool no?), tumblrs (the name makes me want to have a tea party and speak in a British accent) and watching videos about schools being built from plastic bottles. I feel guilty about the extra long vacation from my blog so I'm dumping a whole bunch of cool links to make you happy. Okay?

They're not very hard to find, these nice people. They're all around you. Today's nice-people-around-me edition brings to you the two people who started following my blog even though the last post was so many months old and ended up making me feel like I had to write a new post. Thank you nice people because I didn't realize how much I missed my blog.

Thanks to work, I've been reading these adorable little quotes by kids on random topics. I'm just going to make their quotes my post titles from now on.

My mom doesn't believe in pressure cookers. My mental problems are hereditary, I'm telling you.

And before I go, will somebody please explain the point of LinkedIn? I don't understand it only.

It's 12.10 a.m. and I'm still up. Do you feel special now Mister (Miss?) Blog?