As I travelled down the highway from Pondicherry to Chennai, Amma’s humongous canvas welcomed with her lovely smile, and then the posters varied in sizes but they were everywhere. Amma standing and waving hand or just a cool ‘Namastey’. So gracious! We certainly have the most beautiful women leading Kashmir (aptly named Mehbooba jee) and Kanyakumari (the quitessential ‘kunwari kanya’ Amma jee). Unfortunately, I never spent much time in these lands, surely not my adulthood. Never loved my leaders in true amorous sense.
Born in land of Lalu, and blossomed in land of Thackerey. One, the virile icon with a cricket team of kids, and other the macho-man of Indian politics. What you inherit is a mojo of testosterone but with limited powers. The powers lay in hand of Thackereys.
Love at times of Thackerey wasn’t so easy. After months of cajoling and pleading, you prepare for the Valentines, with a red rose and misty ambience. The smiling couple with scratching toes. The dreamy eyes and the dabbling love. With a touch gentle, and then you light up the candle. And then, somebody just blows it off in name of ‘bhartiya samskruti’. Makes you ‘murga’ and teams you up in fool’s parade. How does it feel like being a valentine murga (and for that matter murgi). Certainly, a chemical reaction occurs in body, and you burp out all the testosterone from unnatural exits.
Things could get worse, if you don’t speak Marathi. But, I made it a point to take marathi lessons well in advance. Another step I took, was never to choose Valentine’s day as D-day. Love proposals are best to be made on ‘Ambedkar Jayanti’ in land of Thackerey. Probably, he is the only person with larger stature than Thackerey in his land. Though, it looks odd to give a red rose on ‘Ambedkar Jayanti’, but is constitutionally correct move. So did I and it worked. Thackereys didn’t even got a whiff of this love. How would they? They dozed off rest of the year, atleast for couples.
All the Thackerey sticks have dates written on it. The pink circle marked stick for Valentines. The browny stick for Bihari beating. The green ones with a pointy dagger for cricket pitch digging. The red one for vandalising cinema halls. And one with ‘pichkaari’ for smearing face. If you got the colour codes and dates right, you would surely love in land of Bollywood.
But, love doesn’t ends up with roses. It has to grow into soft touches, kisses etc., apart from love ballads and naming future kids. Most pocket-friendly place from ages for expression of love is public parks. Thats where Thackerey had his officers on special duties. Somewhere in bushes, as you go hushy-mushy, Thackerey strikes. You feel like a porn-star with a bossom clutched in one hand and a sainik staring at you. And, you burp the testosterone again.
Love trick remains to avoid public parks, chose lifts rather, and finish love ceremony in seconds. Thackereys don’t use lifts or doors thankfully. They just break in.