Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Vijayi Vishwa Tiranga Pyaara!

Ae mere pyare vatan, ae mere bichhde chaman
tujhpe dil qurbaan
Tu hi meri aarzu, tu hi meri aabru
tu hi meri jaan.

Tere daman se jo aaye un havaon ko salaam
choom loon main us zubaan ko jispe aaye tera naam
Sabse pyaari subah teri, sabse rangeen teri shaam,
Tujhpe dil qurbaan.

Tu hi meri aarzu, tu hi meri aabru, tu hi meri jaan.

My favourite deshbhakti song. Gets me all choked up despite the fact that I'm neither fervently patriotic, nor, in any way, bichhdo-ed from my chaman. Also, in the film, the song was sung by a wrongfully-convicted Afghan trader, who was pining for his country i.e. Afghanistan.

I think my patriotic beliefs can safely be defined as 'schizo pick and mix'.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Yah Number Abhi Uplabdh Nahin Hai!

Dear blood-sucker money-grubber pathetic wanker Sunil Bharti Mittal,

By the time you read this I’ll have switched service providers faster than you can say “Madam main Airtel ki oar se…”. I’m sorry for doing this…oh wait, no I’m not! I’m thrilled to be doing this. So thrilled, in fact that I just dialed 121 and laughed like a maniac at the poor sod at the other end. There might have been some ‘nyaah nyaah! I’m switching networks!’ thrown in, but I’m not confirming or denying that.

I know this might come as a bit of shock to you since you’ve been so busy managing all the IV tubes that directly connect our (and by ‘our’, I mean the zillion gullible fools – myself included – who use the airtel network ) veins to your coffers, but I’ve had enough. I am done with frantically running around my house and leaning at precarious angles just to be able to complete a five-minute conversation. It is frankly embarrassing to have to tell everyone who calls you to ‘just give me a minute while I get to a window’ and have them worry about whether they’re unknowingly fuelling your suppressed exhibitionist fantasies. Especially when it is a potential employer on the line.

But you don’t know what frustration is until you’ve been disconnected five times in the span of two minutes, in a conversation with an automated switchboard, where you had to dial your card number, your T-pin number, your date of birth and the date of your last transaction, three times. Only to have a rather tinny version of Für Elise* played back at you on loop.

I think you’re a slimy bastard with a moral fibre which is more frayed, rotting wisps of thread than fibre swell guy man, but I don’t think we’re right for each other. You think it’s fun to con people into giving you more money by swamping them with marketing calls when they’re on roaming rates, I get all warm and fuzzy when I think of the things I could do to you with a pair of industrial pliers, some copper wire and an electric socket.

Anyway, I want to switch to your immediate competitor, Hutch. But you know what? We had some good times, at least until the marketing calls started coming in and your entire effing network died on me. And look - I won't even make an issue out of the money you conned me out of, or the fact that so many of my days were made hellish by your underpaid call-center executives.

So take care of yourself - (if there is any justice in the world) you need to be strong for your years in prison.

With sheer loathing utter contempt a burning desire for revenge,

Your totally-pissed-off-EX-customer.

* Poor Beethoven's probably got friction burns from spinning in his grave so fast. Such a pity the dead can't sue.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Chunnu Munnu di Gaddi

So, Chunnu and Munnu, (by which I mean the SB and I, just in case you were wondering) have gone and got themselves a car. She (the car) is a pretty silver thing and looks like the result of a one of those socially frowned-upon unions (an inter-car marriage?) between a beetle (beetles! I love beetles) and ummm…a bigger car (which also, is the length and breadth of Munnu’s automobile-knowledge. There are beetles, and there are bigger cars).

Chunnu - who used to be a biker and hasn’t really driven cars much - took practice driving classes for about a month before the car was delivered to them. Munnu credits this sensible move as the reason that all three of them (C, M and the G) are alive and undamaged today.

Munnu, however, in all her years, has never seen cars as anything more than things that get you from point A to point B. She has always been supremely unconcerned with things like navigation, traffic rules or even other cars on the road, because you see, it was never her *job* to know these things. Sure, there were the family cars but their ownership was ambiguous; they were never Munnu’s property. Also, there was always a responsible adult (or two) around, who a) drove the car and b) ensured that Munnu got to wherever it is she was going.

As a result of this sheltered upbringing, Munnu is magnificently ill-equipped to deal with the reality of owning a car. When she is strapped into the passenger seat, the responsibility of it all overwhelms her. Her palms go all sweaty and her heart skips a beat every time a BEST bus drives by. She is sorely tempted to jump out of the car screaming and chase all the other vehicles off the road. Or at least out of a five-mile-radius of the Gaddi.

Parking however, is what Munnu finds most stressful, even though she is not the one doing it. Munnu’s job is merely to ensure that the car does not inadvertently snuggle up too close to other cars / pavements / pillars while Chunnu backs it into place. Munnu is frequently convinced that the three feet of space she sees between the Gaddi and the neighbouring car / pavement / pillar is a trick of the light and that any moment, she will hear the not-so-gentle scraping of metal against the relevant immovable object. Every parking episode results in two more of Munnu’s hair turning grey.

Munnu remembers a story she was told as a child, about an aunt who was learning how to drive. Now this aunt lived in Kanpur, which, for some inexplicable reason, had a very high population of pigs. Pigs in general, Munnu’s aunt had no problem with, but apparently Kanpuria pigs were blissfully ignorant of traffic rules, not to mention the law of physics which states, ‘If big metal monster comes in contact with small piggy, small piggy becomes pork chops’. The aunt however, was vegetarian and against the killing of animals (however annoying) and so came up with a solution – she would take the car out with the chowkidar’s seven-year-old son as her only passenger. They would then drive around peacefully until one of the suicidal pigs showed up. The boy would then get out of the car, chase the animal off the road and get back into the car to continue his joyride. It was the perfect arrangement – the boy got a ride, the aunt her driving-practice and the piggy, his life.

Chunnu has suggested that Munnu learn how to drive, to which Munnu cryptically replies, “Our watchman has no sons.”