Dear Automan …

 ‘Auto and automen are an indispensable part of our lives. Right from the childhood they are there for us. From helping  people out in dire straits to taking care of the little ones, the automen are omnipresent today. A warm letter to an automan from a Puneite.’

The earliest memories that I have of you is of when I was barely five and you picked me up daily and deposited me at my school’s doorsteps. I used to approach you with my book-laden bag and my water bottle, which you took from me and then you used to make me sit like a King. I used to be late at times but you would always wait patiently. I used to meet many of my young friends in your Auto and while driving, you used to tell us stories and crack jokes. Continue reading “Dear Automan …”

Scoring a self goal

'Footballer'! Image courtesy of digitalart /
Image courtesy of digitalart /

It was entirely unexpected, a bolt from the blue so to say. I mean to be called a ‘Philistine’ by one’s own friends isn’t a normal routine thing. But it happened recently when one fine day the Football season arrived and my friends learnt that I didn’t give a damn about it.

Now please don’t get me wrong. I neither commend nor condemn Football. I am just a simple, innocent, and ignorant soul who wouldn’t know if Soccer and Football are two different things or the same; to whom Brazil is a country with rich Coffee resources. But I take the courage to ask, “Is this apathy tantamount to call for drastic measures such as social ostracism?” Continue reading “Scoring a self goal”

Father and Son

'Father and Son'! Image courtesy of vectorolie /
‘Father and Son’!
Image courtesy of vectorolie /

Scene : The living room of a flat in the suburbs of a megapolis. The curtains are drawn across the windows and a man in his mid-forties is seated. A young lad – his son, about 15 years of age, enters.

Father: “Why did you take my calculator?”

Son: “Oh dad, I had to do my Maths homework.”

Father: “But you are not supposed to use it. You shouldn’t be at the mercy of these modern gizmos …” Continue reading “Father and Son”

Love’s Labour’s Lost

Hearts! Image courtesy of Feelart /
Image courtesy of Feelart /

My friend has fallen in love again. He came around the other day, not to tell be about it but to get some select romantic prose and poetry. I was hardly surprised, for it is indeed a routine thing for him. He needs only one friendly glance from a girl and he believes that they are made for each other.

I asked him softly if she knew about his infatuation. He said with irritation, “You and your big words. You do ask silly questions.”I gave him one of my famous stares.

“Of course she doesn’t know yet but she spoke to me.” he replied rather with a sly smile. I chuckled and added, “A girl only has to ask you whether the lecture was off and voilà, you become a full-time Romeo. I doubt if your Juliet even knows your name.” Continue reading “Love’s Labour’s Lost”

My mother and a wedding!

'Mehendi!' Image courtesy of Arvind Balaraman /
Image courtesy of Arvind Balaraman /

The easiest thing about promises is that they can be made in an instant, the toughest is having to keep them. No, this is not any philosopher’s quote but my own experience. Like when my mother said, “Vijay, tomorrow morning we have to attend a wedding so get up early” and I simply replied, “Yes amma.”

Indeed there will be hardly anyone who wouldn’t appreciate being cozily tucked up in ones bed on a chilly winter morning. It so warm and comfy under the quilt, so why spoil it to keep a promise foolishly made or a word carelessly given. One knows that the early bird gets the worm, but then who wants grubby little worms. It is only fitting that Cuckoos get them. Continue reading “My mother and a wedding!”

The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

"Happy New Year 2014" “Image courtesy of Arvind Balaraman/”(image ID: 10020948).
“Happy New Year 2014”
“Image courtesy of Arvind Balaraman/”(image ID: 10020948).

I was angry and had a good reason to be as well. I had just earnestly started to elaborate on my New Year Resolutions when my friend doubled up with laughter.

“What is so funny?”, I asked him.

He would not reply, he was far too busy laughing. Well I know the reason anyway. It has always been the case that my list of New Year resolutions are met with mirthful cynicism and I am supposed to be credulous as an ‘eight-year-old’ kid who believes that the moon is made up of green cheese. I find this to be very sad. Continue reading “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

‘A Story With A Difference’

Set of kitchen knives! Image courtesy of Vlado /
Set of kitchen knives!
Image courtesy of Vlado /

“Once Anton Chekhov”, I said to my chum, “told his friend that a good writer just has to see an object and he should be able to write a story about it. His friend was skeptical about it and challenged Chekhov to invent a story about a table knife (they were at a restaurant). Chekhov responded with a masterpiece to prove his point.”

My friend too was interested and asked me, “Could you do it too? I mean, I will give you an idea and you can make a story about it.” Continue reading “‘A Story With A Difference’”

‘The ad as an icon’

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles /
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles /

“If advertisements are anything to go by, the average Indian consumer is just one ‘bright-and-white’ shirt away from a job opportunity of a lifetime, and a good soap is all he needs to improve his personality.”

“Till recently it was believed that you couldn’t fool all the people all the time. I am happy to announce that we have now achieved a breakthrough in that …” This was written below a Laxman cartoon depicting a typical strategy meeting in progress. And instantly my mind went to the field of advertising. Really , it must have been these blokes who succeeded in evolving this inchoate theory. Their market research must have indicated that the average Indian consumer is a stupid sub-human baboon whose IQ averages around zero. Further he lacks the faculty of rational thought and has the herd mentality which is receptive to propaganda. Continue reading “‘The ad as an icon’”

“When the bubble bursts …”

'Mr. Perfect!' Image courtesy of Master isolated images /
‘Mr. Perfect!’
Image courtesy of Master isolated images /

Mr Perfect! I suppose you have met a countable few in your life, like I did. They are the ones who are always right, they can do no wrong and can give you a quiet smile which says, ‘I told you so…’ just after you have had an embarrassing encounter. They are neither shy nor nervous. And they never seem to have a bad day. Whatever they do, it works out well. They also seem to have an amazing run of good luck and success. Continue reading ““When the bubble bursts …””

‘Ouch …of Dog Bites and Injections!’

Cute Dogs! Image courtesy of khunaspix /
Cute Dogs!
Image courtesy of khunaspix /

It was on the 26th of October last year that a dog bit me! I may have caught a reader napping but then the dog took me by surprise too. It is a dog’s world really. I was walking along, having just finished my college exams and looking forward to a relaxing evening, when the dog latched on to my left leg as if it were a juicy bone. Instinctively, I warded it off by hitting it with my bag. Continue reading “‘Ouch …of Dog Bites and Injections!’”