Tuesday, September 8, 2009

"To what a ludicrous state we are brought!
If a Bhangi comes to anybody as a Bhangi, he would be shunned as the plague;
but no sooner does he get a cup full of water poured upon his head with some mutterings of prayer by a Padri, and get a coat on his back, no matter how thread-bare, and come into the room of the most orthodox Hindu-I dont see the Man who then dare refuse him a chair and a hearty shake of the hands!!
Irony can go no farther.
And come and see what they, the Padris, are doing here in the South. They are convering the lower classes by lakhs; and in Travancore, the most priest-ridden country in India-where every bit of land is owned by the Brahmins-Nearly one-fourth has become Christians!
And I cannot blame them; what part have they in David and what in Jesse?
When, when O'Lord, shall Man be brother to Man?"

-Swami Vivekananda,
The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Gimme some more heat,da

"Anna (not Scott, Yairpot, -malai, University, teakadai, barber-shaap, -aachi moar kudunnga)"
"Black Ambassador"
"Kosu" (mosquito)
"Too much lovvu"
"How is the Jetlag" (like it were the weather or something)
"Aavin paal"
"AashirvAdam (with specific things in mind)
"Veyil" (heat)
"Record-breaking veyil (like every single year of the century)
"The (H)indu" paeper
"Anti-Hindu paper"
"More cooling"
"Dei, antha AC high-la podu pa" (Turn the AC on high)
"Vandi" ( vehicle/first love)
"Broken Helmet" (broken heart)
"Keep Left"
"Saavu kraaki" (For the Tamil-illeterate, go and ask your literate friends)
"Middle finger"
"Sonia Gandhi"
"Amma" (the bigger one)
"Nooru-ruba potu kudunga Saaar" (Please give us a hundred-rupees more because we are coldblooded rowdies and like to bully the public, and also...its recession time)
"Innum saagala" (Not yet dead)
"City Centre"
"Masala kadalai"
Sooopar da"
"Pattu podavai" (Silk-sarees)
"Paatu" (Moosic)
"Kovil" ( I hate translating into Tamil when almost everyone I know speaks Tamil)
"(haiyo) Narayana"

Welcome to Chennai, m'dear Lady...

The city has indeed missed you.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Trust me, its not because I'm busy.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Devil wears Skis

I had never been SO excited about doing anything in my life. Not even sneaking out of Analog Communication class to watch Manmadhan ( I had officially bunked class to watch a lousy Tamil movie ..but oh what the heck)

I was going to to ski...!! Really ski..!! I mean on real snow!

God, this was a tough one to pass. I mean, think about it...could I even think about doing this in Madras? Even in Winter? Please, the place is so hot that ice melts even inside the refrigerator (but I love the place, so beat it!)

So NOW I knew why God wanted me here despite all my squirming. He wanted me to!

The Gods wanted skiiiii!

Well, the Husband and I had a few concerns on whether we'd be able to do it, ski that is, considering this was our first attempt. So what was the big deal anyways? I mean, we'd have a an instructor who'd brief us on how to NOT break our vital parts, plus we'd be given helmets to protect our heads. Besides, I knew how to ice-skate decently as I'd done a considerable amount of it in 8th grade (courtesy Girl Scouts) was just the Husband who had to balance on ice for the first time, technically.

Man, this was gonna be cool.

So, a couple of friends decide to come along with us on our skiing escapade on this bright Saturday morning. Hema and Vish (names not changed to protect identity 'cos they really don't care) were as excited as were were and what was skiing if you didn't do it with company?

So we reached Hunter Mountain which is in Upstate New York, filled up the forms and rented the skis and helmets. We looked like super Heroes on a roll. Or dorks, depending on who you were looking at.

On our way out to the snow-mountains, we were divided into groups where the Husband was put into the group that headed out first while I was put in another with the rest of our clan. No biggy, just that we started off almost an hour later.

The first group had a Chinese instructor who (later I'm told) apparently 'forgot' to teach his group how to 'stop' their skis from crashing into a wall while rushing down a hill uncontrollably. I thought these lessons were ALL about knowing how to stop the goddamn skis. Bah!

We, however, had problems of our own. An enormously fat lady as our instructor who made it difficult for us to concentrate while we were busy making cartoony pictures with our heads of her rolling off her ski's and into a wall, was a challenge on its own. But we were soon to discover that excepting for us 3 doofuses (thats a word 'cos this is my blog), the rest of the group comprised of skillful 'pros' who were born naturals from the moment they put their skis on. Actually they were all just kids half my age but deep down, I was willing to bet that they had skied to glory in their previous lives as well. It didn't take too long before it was evident that we stood out quite distinctly from the group, for all the wrong reasons.

As our fat lady started to sing instruct, the 3 of us tried to pay very special attention to what was our skiing lesson. I'd however take an extra minute longer in translating the American-accented instructions to the Indian ones in my brain 'cos I'm from the villages and I think white skin is so cool.

From what was being our first instruction that required me to put my skis on, I was the group's clumsy goofball. I'd feel as though I was falling off a hill, all this on a flat surface! As the instructions began to pour in one by one, I'd find myself accelerating uncontrollably down a slope each time I tried to follow the new instruction or a new move. It was crazy I tell you! I mean, all I'd intend to do is ski down a ramp for about 8 feet and then make a slight 'turn' towards the right or the left in order to stop the motion down hill ...but oh no, my skis would be on a jolly trip to the walls some 100 feet away and I'd have no other choice BUT to forcefully 'make' myself fall (if I were that lucky) as that would be the only way to impede a crash into the gated-walls. Charming, I tell you.

An hour later, our Instructor decides to free the class, a good 30 minutes before schedule. Why this early? To quote the fat lady 'This group barring a very few (which meant just me..grr) doesn't need any are all born naturals'. Hema had given-up a good forty-five minutes before, and Vish...well, I don't know what happened to him...I couldn't even find him. So I was out there on my own, trying to have my skis on and not go tumbling down the mountain at the same time. Fun eh?

For those of you who may implicate that I didn't 'try' or put any effort to sustain on that battlefield, in my defence let me just say that I must have spent at least 50 minutes trying to master the 'wedge' (Plus I'd given up trying to locate the Husband and clan)

I should have packed my skis while I had the chance, but I'd decide to give another whack at it. And, try I did! The wedge, might I add, is an up-side down 'V' shape you form with your legs in a desperate attempt to stop moving at 500 miles/hr. Its supposed to work like a charm, and stop your skiis instantly however fast you may be skiing down. This trick, however didn't work with me (why aren't we surprised). Infact it would do quite the opposite in effect and I'd end up accelerating my way down a 100 feet slope in some 800 miles/hr on my way to Crashsville. All that snow. Christ, were was the sun when you needed it.

If you're still thinking why I didn't stop and give-up, well sorry to burst your bubble, but I quite did.

At around 4 pm I decided to call it a day and broadcast the fact that I proposed to officially quit my long and successful stint in skiing. The Husband, quite apparently had a jolly good time skiing his butt off and refused to come out till the authorities switched the lights off.

I on the other hand, had a couple of things I could use from this escapade...a ton of loony photos which me look like ludicrous astronaut, a couple of broken bones around my neck (from the thousands of times I came tumbling down, who'd think?), and a twisted tale to inspire fellow ambitious Desis.

Goooooooooooooooooooooooo ski ! :D