Wednesday, July 25, 2007


In the back
You thought it was over, you fool
Here it is again
You thought they meant well
Well think again
You thought you had nothing to lose
You've lost nothing again

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Why me, dear creature, why me?

I am a creature magnet.

Nothing can bring home this fact more strongly than entering your house one fine morning after a hard night’s work and finding a huge, live bat circling madly around your living room.

This was the situation in which I found myself today, and I let out a yelp and ran down to get the watchman.

The poor man was still groggy with sleep, what with it being some 5:15 am, and as I cowered in a corner he proceeded to drive the bat out of my house. We thought it went into the kitchen (where it probably entered from, that sadistic open window), so I shut that door and the guard went away, probably cursing me in his mind for disturbing his morning beedi.

I breathed a sigh of relief and entered my bedroom, and switched on the light. Staring me in the face was the grinning bat. I could have killed it had I remained in that place a minute longer. With shaking hands I opened my apartment door and called out for the guard yet again.

By the time the guard came up to my floor, the bat had proceeded from the bedroom to the living room (at least it had good manners). Finally the guard, with the help of my beloved woollen scarf, managed to drive the culprit out.

I was drained. My encounters with creepy crawlies are the stuff legends are made of. Recently, at the Aerosmith concert, a spider attempted to scale the peak that is my back.

There has to be a deeper meaning to this. I have a sneaky suspicion that some superheroes are missing women in the workplace, and want to recruit me as the new batwoman or spiderwoman. Maybe I should listen to the underlying message?

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Tintin in the bin? Not "fair"

I just came across a news item in which a racism watchdog (Commission for Racial Equality) asked bookstores to remove the Tintin comicbook "Tintin in the Congo" from their shelves as it promotes racial stereotypes and shows Africans as "monkeys and imbeciles."

Ok, so let me get this straight. This UK-based group wants to regulate artistic expression. Can I not then argue that this Western group is threatening the right to free expression? When we see Dilbert jokes on manic managers, do we actually think that all our managers are moronic idiots (we may, but I am hoping not ALL of them are). In any case, I am really puzzled by this lack of judgement in the organization.

Contrast this to the Big Brother show, where the third-party interference of Oxfam was justified. Articulated abuse intended to hurt should definitely be punished. But unintended racial stereotyping is surely condonable.

If everything is censored, no one will feel free enough to satirize anything, and we all will be the losers.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Trust in the time of Terror: Updated

Recently, my bai (read: maid) stopped coming to my apartment for her daily chores (for which I pay her 500 rupees, or about 12.5 USD per month, but that is a separate story). Her name was Lakshmi, and I wondered, without much emotion, on her disappearance.

Anyhow, I didn't think too much for too long, these disappearances being a way of life in urban India. I "headhunted" for another maid to fill the vacancy, without any fiscal trouble to myself. (Heh I love this crappy jargon).

This new lady who cleans for me, I don't even know her name yet. I mean, in this day and age, is this a pragmatic thing for a single gal like me?

I think not.

But somehow, I cannot be distrustful of her cheerful face when she comes in and starts breaking my glasses while washing them carelessly, eliciting groans. I just burrow my face into my pillow and try to drown out the clanging, swishing and slopping that miraculously transforms my flat into a respectable and habitable area.

When my neighbors tell me I am overpaying her, I look at them in disbelief. I am sure those freako software or finance guys are making a bomb, much more than a poor journo like me, but they are mean enough to tell me to cut the salary of my maid WHO MAKES FREAKING 12.5 DOLLARS A MONTH! What should I do? Cut 50 cents? For Chrissakes!

Anyway, rant apart, I have no idea if this woman might not suddenly plunge a knife into my back or rig up my gas cylinder to blow up just as I take a leak, but somehow I cannot doubt her intentions that far. The only thing that concerns me is the frequency of glass-breakage in the house, which is rising alarmingly. Please pray for me lest I have to guzzle the magic potion directly from the bottle.

I recently found out that my new maid's name is Padma. Padma-Lakshmi... made me snicker.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Kaushik's nudge

Kaushik nudged me out of my bloggy slumber today, wondering where on earth I seem to have disappeared. My lovely blog people, I am very much here; it's just that I seem to be grappling with a solid lack of inspiration. Or maybe I am just growing old: I keep coming across ideas to write about in my blog but keep forgetting them! Talk about eternal sunshine of the spotless mind.

One idea that I vaguely remember was borne out of a conversation with a friend, in which we compared men witn bras (yes, really), about how it is hard to find either that fits well. Oh well. Too bad you will not be regaled with that talk on the blog. (Now now Shuv that's no reason to go hack your computer down with an axe!)

But this blog thingy is really a pressure machine man. One cannot simply vanish and not write. (Actually one can but then where is the much-needed distraction from the daily plod called life?)

In other recent news, Gypsy has again inspired me put on my travelling chappals. So here I am, sitting in office, supposedly working, while I surreptitiously find out that 1 Czech Koruny = 2 Indian Rupees.