Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Of Douches, casanovae and all that

I am no Don Juan. Casanova would probably squirm in his grave if someone compared me to him. My charm, erudition, politeness and keenness may be bywords in the circles that I frequent - but remarks on my way with women often provokes a hiss or a peal of unrestrained laughter from the worms who happen to be my comrades-in-arms.

I can well imagine this conversation between an egg, a bean and crumpet who know me.

The egg says, as the three of them nestle close to the electric heater, ‘Ah, Siddhu! That’s a gentleman. Doesn’t miss a thing!’

The bean nods sagely in concurrence as he quaffed his fifth whisky down in a hurry, ‘Oh yeah! Ol’ eagle-eye Warrier about sums it up. Even if he does make pathetic attempts to imitate that chap called Wodehouse that slips my mind.’

The crumpet then speaks, ‘That’s all very fine. But what about his luck with women – or should I say, his way with women!?’

(Egg, bean and crumpet roll on the floor laughing, until the crumpet burns himself on the heater coil. Serves him right, the bastard!)

But the egg, bean and crumpet – even if they are struck down by lightning or eaten by bears for their blasphemy – weren’t too far away from putting their finger on the nub of the whole thingummy, as I illustrated yet again a couple of days ago.

I was all a-twitter. I was off to watch a terrible movie that is better left unnamed simply because a little chickadee, so to speak, was supposed to be watching it as well. After gelling my hair, adjusting my glasses for the umpteenth time (wait a second, I don’t wear glasses – so let’s skip that bit), and spraying enough deodorant to create a sizeable hole in the ozone layer, I walked away toward the bus stand.

Having become unaccustomed to getting anywhere on time during the course of 21 misspent years, I reached the bus stand to take in the wafting stench of diesel as the bus sped away – without me.

After a long, arduous journey which involved walking half a kilometer to find a cab, I managed to reach where I was supposed to meet the aforementioned popsy – to find that there was no popsy waiting.

It was a perplexing puzzle. I deduced that if there was no popsy where there was, technically, supposed to be a popsy, something was wrong. With my immense powers of ratiocination, I divined that any of the following could have happened –

The popsy had not arrived yet.
The popsy was sick of waiting for me.

She had been abducted by aliens who were in cahoots with the Iraqi insurgency.

After having dismissed the third as impossible, primarily because there are no Iraqis left outside Guantanamo bay and Abu Gharib, I began to consider the first two possibilities in all seriousness.

A swift glance at my watch told me that I was fifteen minutes late. After listening to a few well-chosen words from my friend whom I had dragged along for the ordeal, I got onto another taxi to go to the theater directly. The cost incurred by self appeared to be assuming terribly monstrous proportions – the monstrosity of which grew with every ‘tick’ of the taximeter. I finally arrived at the theater – five pounds in the red already – and met the damsel I have spoken in such glowing terms over the past two pages.

I don’t know what it is about female temperament that makes a fifteen minute wait intolerable. And the damsel was displayed every sign of the female temperament that has befuddled philosophers over the ages.

Trying to make amends, I offered hastily to buy the tickets, and rushed ahead towards the counter butting a woman in the stomach on the way.

‘Er… two tickets, please’, said I, in my most suave, debonair and charming manner.

My friend who had reason to remonstrate with me previously tapped me on the shoulder and asked me to get another two for him and his friend.

‘Er…another two tickets, but he’s paying for them.’, I muttered to the rather retarded chap selling the tickets.

The retarded chap, stung to the quick, told me to conduct my business dealings first and then rejoin at the end of the queue. Which I did. As I walked back to the end of the queue, I noticed the damsel muttering something to her friend - harsh words which were indubitably not coated in milk and honey.

Ticket counter again. No mishaps, this time. Until the retard asked me for the money. I paid him what my friend had just handed me, and then took my wallet out with a flourish.

It was empty.


‘Don’t you have the cash, mate?’, asked the ticket seller, now looking more like a gorilla than a retard.

‘Er…I think I accidentally forgot to visit the cash machine. Can I pay by card?’, said I, very sheepishly.

‘Sure, mate.’, said he, smiling once again – if one could call that vacuous expression he had on a smile.

After handing the card over to him, I leant on the partition with the confidence of a man who knows he’s ahead of the game. It was as I was musing on nothing in particular that the chap rose up again, looking like the Angrezon ki zamane ka jailer (which was probably what his grandfather was).

‘Your credit card has exceeded its credit limit.’, said he, coldly, and pushed the card back to me.

The damsel came hurrying, wondering what all the commotion was about.

‘What’s wrong, Siddhu?’

‘Er…a trifling logistical issue. I seem to be experiencing a slight, temporary liquidity crunch!’

‘You mean, you don’t have enough money.’

The idiot behind the counter piped up, ‘That means he has no money, Ma’am. Can you please pay for him?’

With a stare that Roget would call baleful, malevolent and sinister she paid for her tickets – and mine.

After everything, we walked into the theater where, thanks to what the damsel called ‘my dilatory tactics’, there were two pairs of two seats separated by an abyss wider than the grand canyon.

‘So what do you want to do now?’, asked she, tapping her foot in irritation.

Then, her friend resolved the situation by saying, ‘I can’t sit up front. I’ll sprain my neck, and then I’ll have spondylitis, and then I’ll have to wear a collar, and then I’ll be in a wheelchair all my life. (er…she didn’t say the last bit)’

It was then that I was struck with the biggest brainstorm to hit a human being since when in 2003 Dubya decided to ‘liberate’ Iraq in two weeks.

I said, ‘Okay, myself and my (male) friend will sit up front. You can sit up here with your friend.’

The friend who expected spondylitis giggled rather loudly as I walked downstairs.

As I walked down, I heard my friend whisper in my ear, ‘Douche!!!’

And then it struck me! Goddammit! Douche was right!!

Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction. Douche, I may be, but such a big douche I definitely am not.

Note: People can be as big douches as this. Trust me!

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

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People of the Year 2005

It has been over a year since I began to write unadulterated, Grade-A rubbish for this blog of mine. As I trawled through my blog, I discovered that I rang in 2005 with a list of the people of the year 2004 . It is therefore in keeping with tradition that I continue this year by presenting the Siddhu Persons of the Year 2005 – a list of people, organizations and animals that made 2005 an unliveable, intolerable and painful experience for those of us at the bottom of the pecking order.

In the year that went past, hurricanes, tsunamis, torrential rains, obese chief ministers and equally obese female police officers gave stiff competition to American soldiers, George W Bush and Osama bin Laden in entertaining the populace.

So, without further ado, I present the Siddhu persons of the year 2005.

1.Air India

Air India has contributed more to providing me with my share of pain in a year where the usual suspects continued their good work in Guantanamo bay, Abu Ghraib and King’s Cross.

I travelled five times on Air India in the year that has just passed us by. The first flight was to Singapore. The flight taught me the value of patience and meditation as I spent eighteen hours waiting for the plane that would take me to that well-loved dictatorship next door (a distance of three thousand kilometres, by the way), and two dollars writing about my experiences at an uncomfortable and slightly smelly Internet cafe in Chennai Airport. Before anyone tries to blame Air India for its inefficiency, one would do well to remember that an airline cannot do much else when one of their forty-five year old lumbering leviathans decides to go on strike, and the only other available fifty year old replacement is currently on safari in a Kenyan jungle (which, by the way, o incredulous reader, was the reason given us for the delay).

The second flight was from Heathrow to Bombay, via Modiland. Due to a conspiracy of right-wing Hindu nationalists conspiring to establish a Hindu Rashtra (while merrily massacring ethnic and religious minorities on the way), one of the engines of another Air India plane – a veteran of a hundred thousand sorties during World War II, and a witness to the Hindenburg fire of 1936 – decided to take a break. Before anyone tries to blame Air India for being manned by a bunch of incompetent nincompoops, one would do well to remember that our average public sector airline cannot do much else if Narendra Modi decides to start another merry orgy of communal rioting – precipitating it, this time around by engineering the failure of an Air India engine.

Apart from these delays, Air India worked assiduously to being selected in this list by hiring obese air hostesses who cannot help brush huge rear ends on unsuspecting aisle seat passengers and disturbing their sleep and recruiting baggage handlers who have done their utmost to lose my luggage – twice!

2. The Moral Policemen

The moral policemen that one saw spreading misery in 2005 were not all clad in the reviled khaki. One of them even called himself a Vice Chancellor.

They worked day and night to prevent the corruption of Indian culture, and ensure that India begins to look more and more like a bombed-out armpit named Afghanistan did when under the Taliban. They protected the lecherous male Anna University student from the desire to rape a desirable young lass clad in a (gasp) tee shirt and jeans by instructing women not to wear western clothes any more. They protected the easily blinded Anna University lecturer from the harmful effects of the colour red on the female body by banning red altogether. (Note: All female Red Indian students would have been expelled, if there were any.) They protected young women who allowed themselves to be corrupted by embracing a male by getting policewomen to beat the young women up. The policewomen, it is worthwile to add, were of a kind that no right-thinking straight male would touch with a ten foot pole.

Gay rights groups the world over have lauded the moral police for the curbs imposed on heterosexual activity in India. As Elton John, five-time recipient of the prestigious Faggot of the Year award, stated, “Right thinking individuals in Indian polity realize the folly of men and women getting together. This is a major step in the direction of a homosexual world.”

Mr. John went on to add that he would be happy to demonstrate the joys of homosexuality to the Indian male, in order to cure him of his disturbingly heterosexual taste. Gay rights groups attribute these moves in the recent past to demonstrations of a similar nature by Elton John and his comrades-in-arms on the persons of the Anna University vice-chancellor and certain individuals of indeterminate sex enforcing the law in Uttar Pradesh.

3. MMSi

MMSi (or MMSes, if the reader so wishes) have definitely been the hero(in)es of the year 2005. The intrepid DPS girl started it all when she performed facial contortions while her mouth was full. It will be remembered that she was much appreciated by this author last year for her lucidity and clarity of expression, even as she worked energetically with hand and mouth.

And India's beautiful (and not-so-beautiful) women have not looked back ever since. Riya Sen followed in her illustrious footsteps, as did India's answer to push-up bras and Pamela Anderson, Mallika Sherawat. It was but a short while before Sania Mirza purportedly made a release of her own - a release which unfortunately turned out to be one of Sania Mirza's look-alikes.

MMSi have done a good job bringing cheer and joy to desperate, under-sexed (and extremely available) men like the writer of this tome. Until the Vice-Chancellor of Anna University banned all forms of heterosexual activity (including heterosexual pornography) on-campus, engineering students across its campii entertained themselves through several boring classes by means of these MMSi.

Scientists suggest that these MMSi have contributed greatly to an increase in the frequency and duration of visits paid by the young Indian male to the toilet. As an evidently virile engineerin gstudent on the way to one said, "The Taj Mahal is no longer man's biggest erection for woman.".