Mixed doubles

Two fascinations of rich elite class remained with me for long— playing golf, and having rejuvenation spa. The swinging shiny chiseled golf-stick, stroll through golf-courses donning a stylish golf-hat, and a ride on those golf carts with hot women. Ah heaven! For records, golf fascination remains. But, frequent body-aches pushed me to a rejuvenation spa situated bang opposite my hospital, which displayed a half-naked woman lying flat with some oil dripping on her nude back.
Well, I had some oil-massages from village barber, and at a local akhaada-style gym during early young days. The masochistic telmaalish (oil massage). While the barber would kick and thrash randomly on body, giving harsh spins to the neck and torso, generating cracking sounds through every joint of body, the akhaada one was soft oil massage rubbing chest and back like some gay-porn. 
My eyes searched for some pehelwaan (muscleman) figure in the spa, but all it had were the dark-haired north-eastern fair-skinned girls with accented crisp english. A shiver ran through spine as they seemed to scan my body, and guided me to a dark room. I wondered if some beastly muscle-man is lurking in dark. May be a revenge from the dark past.

Years back in med-school days, we witnessed some sadistic sessions of homosexual thrashings. A fair smooth-skinned fellow (colloquially called ‘chikna‘) would set the honeytrap in public toilet at a happening posh street in midnight. He would trap a gay with erudite suggestive gestures, bring him to hostel, and suddenly a group of sadistic fellows would thrash him brutally. The Gandhian in me would run to his rescue, only to be scorned and laughed at, as homosexual chikna. Soon I began growing my beard to never ever called chikna again.

Coming back to the spa session, there wasn’t any muscleman waiting, rather one of those chikni girls ordered me to be naked. What? A respected suave doctor and father of two daughters, stripping off in a dark room with a woman? What if a patient is lying next to me, and figures out Doctor-saab has a mole on his ass? Forget a patient, what if this girl visits my hospital next day and gives a naughty smirk in front of my colleagues? I just covered my face with palm, followed her orders, and my hindu self began muttering HanumanChalisa (a religious chant). She was indifferently massaging my body, while I was differently shrinking and giggling when she touched the sole of my feet. I don’t know if she sensed my discomfort or was surprised at my repulsive behaviour. She asked, “Are you a gay?” This was extreme insult to my sexuality, and I retorted, “Why? Are you a lesbian?” 

Woman casually said, “Yes, I am. My husband died of excessive drinking barely three years after marriage. I hate having relationship with men.” 

Her confession shed off my inhibitions, as if the woman was harmless and my humanly wiggling willy too shrunk back. So did the pride of false man-hood, the gay-beating, and the lesbian-hatred. 

The blue ice: a shit-com

For whatever reasons, birds always found my head as a coveted shitting destination. Even in a crowded environment, if a bird is flying around, I would gear up myself holding a file or book overhead. My transient breath of relief would be annuled as the raven comes back swifter dropping on me accurately like a targeted missile. I was brutally splattered with bird-droppings during my short stint in Indian Institute of Science, which boasted of highest density of nasty crows (kauwa). For the first time in my life, I wore a Govinda-style yellow shirt to camouflage the shitty polka-drops.

The fear of bird-droppings soon extended to any flying object as I would hide even at sight of aeroplane. I always wondered what happens to the shit in the air. Most convenient way would be to disperse it in vastness of atmosphere, and cruise away. The untimely rains and windy splatters. My curiousity ended recently when an elderly woman in Bhopal (city in central India) got hit by a huge chunk of ice fallen from sky. Early investigations suggested it could be ‘blue ice’, human excreta disposed from aeroplanes which gets frozen in stratosphere. My fear wasn’t completely ungrounded and some do throw the shit right up in the air, especially Indian planes devoid of sanitary space on ground.

While the aeroplane mystery took some time, Indian railways were pretty blatant and open-minded from its inception. A hole in the toilet peeps directly down on track. At a usual train velocity of 150 km/hr, a 15 minute shit of yours can make roughly 38 km trail of shit droppings. Considering ever-engaged toilets in trains, the multi-origin shitty trail would extend from origin to destination spanning some 1000 kms. One of the royal heir I heard of, always took a local 30 minute railway stretch every morning at 6 0’clock, only to shit in moving train! His habit seem to have ended at a serious note when he disregarded the statutatory warning displayed in Indian Railways – Please do not use toilets when the train stops at platform. People say, constipated Raja-Saa’b continued his rituals even when train stopped. Sanitation fellows with long brooms began cleaning the toilets, shoving through holes beneath the train, and gave a powerful thrust when they found anything obstructive. This time, it was Raja Saa’b’s ass!

I haven’t utilised public toilets much in life, since I considered them as some sacred love destination. Similar to temple walls, toilet walls too are studded with scribbled names of ‘love-couples’. I wonder how somebody can have an amorous feeling while shitting, and scribble his flame’s name. Extreme love! Isn’t it? As I recently travelled and about to position myself strategically on a shaking commode, I found it written on toilet wall – I love you Priya. I pity the love of poor girl Priya with the shitty boy.

There were days even in my life, when village toilets were reserved for women who seem to have incessant affair with bathrooms. I would be forced to stroll to bamboo-plantations and ease myself with bushy grasses rubbing my body. Umpeen times would I change my position as I would imagine somebody staring at me and breaching my privacy. At a distance, I saw a queue of villagers shitting calmly with one palm on their cheek as if in a great contemplation. Surely, those early days devoid of toilets, gave India great philosophers. Even today, at least my blogging ideas shoot off from long gruelling sessions in toilet. Doesn’t my blog stink?

[a satire on need of sanitation in developing nations; a sequel to earlier blog ‘Love is in the air’]

The second innings

One of my nerdy friend, have got two divorces and three wives already. I envy his facebook marriage updates. Probably, the planning begins right at time of marriage. While I have been busy looking for an accountant to manage my taxes, he had been much shrewd to hire a good divorce lawyer. 

Its not about talent. Both of us were barely 20-30 ranks apart in college days, now we are 2-3 wives apart. If each wife is given a score of 2, he is at whopping 6, while I have a measly score of 2 with two negative (-) points of kids making it ‘zero’….cipher…..shoonya. Damn! Its all about talent.

While many of my earlier posts (e.g. Desi midlife crisis) does point towards me being in ‘frustrated forties’, I am not. Neither my clicking ‘follow’ on any remotely girlish gravatar proves anything. That reminds me, I once followed a long haired fellow in half-downloaded gravatar on my phone, proved to be a thick-moustached, heavily bearded spiritual guru later. To magnify my embarassment, he would send ‘love and light’ in his comments. 

Anyway, a craving for second innings and to even the score did lead me sieving through unanswered facebook requests. I diligently sorted out wheat from the chaff, I mean women from men. Next step was to exclude ones with many hobnobbing mutual friends. Criteria was set to ‘less than three’ mutual friends. After adding all of them, I just waited, like my wife waits for ‘whistle’ of pressure-cooker. The vibrations, the dancing nozzle, and the warning muzzled sounds culminating to extreme shrillness announces ‘rice is ready’. I too was vibrating and dancing like a cooker nozzle. 

And, it worked!!!

Many, “Sorry! May I know you?”, popped on my mac. 

The question griped me, and pushed me to oblivion. Having spent close to 40 yrs on earth, world doesn’t know me. People win Wimbledon, become bollywood superstar, bomb countries by this age. And me? Sending facebook requests to girls? Is my identity restrained to a mutual friend? Nah!

I just snubbed off, unfriended all of them, and got back to life, wife and rice.

Second innings begin with fall of early wickets. 

Match forecast: Brutal thrashing, innings defeat and follow on, when wifey reads it.

कबिरा खड़ा बाज़ार में

तोतली टूटी-फूटी बोली थी, नाक बहती, निकर खिसकती, फिर भी सवाल जरूर पूछा जाता- बड़े होकर क्या बनोगे? इस सवाल के ज़वाब से भी IQ का संबंध है. कोई डॉक्टर, कोई इंजीनियर, कोई पायलट, जो माँ-बाप सिखाते बोल देते. मैंने कहा, “साईंटिस्ट बनूँगा, नोबेल प्राइज जीतूँगा, और मरने से पहले राष्ट्रपति भी.” पूछनेवाले मुँह एँठते-कहते, “झा साब! और कुछ बने ना बने, आपका बेटा लम्बी लम्बी जरूर छोड़ेगा.”

अंकल की बात दिल पे लग गयी. मैंने कहा आविष्कार तो मैं कर के रहूँगा. लेकिन क्या? 

कबीर दास के दोहे से पहला आइडिया आया.

“बोए पेड़ बबूल का, आम कहाँ से होये”.

मैंने कहा अब तो बबूल के पेड़ पे आम लगा के रहूँगा. ऐसी खुराफातों के लिये भाई शुरूआत में जरूर साथ देते हैं ताकि प्लान फेल होने पर उछल उछल कर ठिठोली कर सकें. 

पड़ोसी गाँव के मामाजी ने ग्राफ्टिंग के गुर सिखाए, माँ से जिद कर केमिकल खरीदे, और बबूल के पेड़ पर एक-एक बड़े सलीके से सर्जिकल कटिंग कर जोड़ बनाता गया. एक टहनी भी न लगी, सामने के आम का लहलहाता पेड़ गंजा जरूर हो गया. पिताजी ने इन्क्वायरी बिठाई, भाईयों ने फुलझड़ी लगाई, और एक महान वैज्ञानिक पटाखों की तरह बजा दिया गया.

“निंदक नियरे राखिये, आँगन कुटी छवाय”

निंदा और ठिठोली करने वाले तो घर में ही था. कबीर दास के इसी फंडे पे हिम्मत दुगुनी हो गयी. 

इस बार बिजली बनाने की सोची. गाँव के लिये बिजली नयी चीज़ थी. वो तो बस उस बिज़ली से वाकिफ थे जो मवेशी मेले में नाचने आती. भाई-साब ने आईडिया दिया, गाँव के पचास लोग हर रात साईकिल चलायेंगे, डायनमो इफेक्ट से पचास घरों में बल्ब जलेंगे.

“धीरे धीरे रे मना, धीरे सब कुछ होय”

प्लान साइकल की स्पीड से फुस्स हो गया.

२००४ ईसवी में पहली बार रिसर्च करने इंडियन इंस्टिच्यूट अॉफ साइंस में किशोर वैज्ञानिक रूपेण चयनित हुआ. रिसर्च का तो पता नहीं, कैंटिन के डोसे लाज़वाब थे. और रात को लैब के बाहर चाय. वाह! मज़ेदार. बाकि रिसर्च तो क्या, इस टेस्ट्यूब से उस टेस्ट्यूब. चार घंटे बाद रीडिंग लो. फिर वही रीपीट करते रहो. इस से कहीं ज्यादा प्रयोग तो मेरी माँ मुरब्बे-अचार में कर ले.

“जिन खोजा तिन पाइयाँ, गहरे पानी पैठ”

आखिरकार मेडिकल की पढ़ाई खत्म होते ही पहली फुरसत में अमरीका निकल लिया. दो बड़े फैकल्टी के लैब पसंद आये. हमारे आधे फैसले तो हेड-टेल या अक्कर बक्कर बम्बे बो से होते हैं. डॉ लिगेट विजयी रहे, लातेरबूर हार गये. मैं भी जी-जान से रिसर्च में लग गया. डॉ. लातेरबूर को देखता तो मंद मुस्कान देता. बिना फंडिंग के गरीब दयनीय परिस्थिति थी उनके लैब की.

“जाति न पूछो साधू की, पूछ लिजिये ज्ञान”

२००५ दिसंबर: Paul laterbur wins Nobel Prize in medicine.

मतलब यूँ कहिये, सारे गणित धरे के धरे रह गये. थोड़े दिन टेस्ट-ट्यूब में चाय-साय बनाई, और वापस आ गया डाक-साब बनने.

मेक इन इंडिया कोई जुमला भले ही हो, बड़े जुगत का काम है. अजी मुरब्बे नहीं बनाने, रिसर्च और आविष्कार करने हैं.

“कबिरा खड़ा बाज़ार में, माँगे सबकी खैर”

The common wall: great Indian neighbours

I love him but I just don’t like the way he gurgles and clears throat every morning. We greet each other when we rush to pick our newspapers; While I give a conceited grin holding an intellectual The Hindu, he mocks me with saucy hot Times supplement. He keeps his car shinier than mine, and would light up his house 15 seconds before me in Diwaali. And both of our wives are locked in everlasting sugar-coated fierce duel. The day one joins Yoga, other joins Zumba, and the fight goes on. 

Years back somewhere in 1985, our childhood neighbour got a videocon colour TV, which was talk of mohalla. A month later, a massive deluge happened and our entire city was flooded. Yet, my dad sailing through waist-high water, was lifting a large box on his head, like Vasudev lifting Lord Krishna. It was a new Onida TV which said, “Neighbour’s envy; Owner’s pride.” 

Rest of the TV-deprived neighbourhood would gather to watch the ’87 world cup. TV was disproportionate large in our small home; My mother would fry delicious pakodas for kids who parted with us; While, neighbour uncle would slap any guy caught smiling when India lost wicket. India lost the world cup, but we won as better host.

Event led to an unsaid ‘cold war’, a war of superiority, and we took the brunt most. If his kids got more marks, I was screwed and vice versa. But, my dad suddenly become Gandhian and began giving Amir Khanish lectures. He arranged many Vajpayee-Musharraf style meetings but one day the neighbour kid stole all our fresh lemons and the war resumed. Lemons were returned, kid beaten and a wall was erected. The wall on which we urinated for long.

We moved from kid-hood to adulthood, and my father turned into Robinhood helping any needy, but neighbourhood bitterness persisted. Whenever friendship of our generation bloomed, aunty would charge at her son, “If you like them. Go and stay with them.” As if we were Pakistan, and he was Shahrukh khan, huh!  Shahrukh khan my foot!! He wasn’t even close to Rajpal Yadav. 

Years gone past, we moved to other states, other countries, globalised. The wall stands but lost its sheen with some algae layers at bottom, I believe nobody urinated on it for years. Faded yet a memory stands, when there wasn’t a wall, a TV, and a reason to fight. Our fathers played chess, while we toiled in mud and sand.

Uff! He coughed again. Bloody! Man has TB I think. 

तालीम

कुछ चीजें न याद है और न ख्वाहिस हैं सुनने की. भला उस जमाने में डाइपर रहे होंगें, शोभा डे जैसे हाइ-फाई लोगों ने पहनें होंगे, हम तो नंग-धड़ंग घूमते रहे. दूरदर्शन पे तो डायपर वगैरा के विज्ञापन भी नहीं आते थे, क्या हगीज़ और क्या पैंम्पर्स? इसकी एक वज़ह शायद ये भी रही हो कि कार और फ्लाइट में घूमना फिरना कम था. अब ट्रेन-बसों में तो खिड़की से धार बहाने की बच्चों को आजादी थी. न उम्र रही, और न आज़ादी; ये मलाल रह गया कि डायपर कभी न पहन सके. 

विज्ञापन तो क्या थे? सुनील गावस्कर और वेंगसरकर तो छोड़ो, आलोकनाथ तक साबुन के विज्ञापन में. नहाने से जैसे नफरत सी हो गयी. वो तो धन्यभाग्य पहली दफा प्रीति जिंटा एक ऐड में दीखी और जैसे देश में स्नान-क्रांति आ गयी. 

डायपर तो एक छोटी कड़ी है. तालीम तो जैसे अधूरी सी रह गयी. अजी आधे तो ऐसे जीये, “बी.ए. हुए, नौकर हुए, पेंशन मिली और मर गये”. बच्चों को वन्डरला (एक फन रिसोर्ट) घूमाने गया. जोश में पानी में छलाँग भी मार दी, और ऊँकडू हो दायें-बायें लात मारने लगा. कई जुगत लगाये. बच्चे तैरते हुये ठिठोली करने लगे. हिम्मत तो देखो! भला कोई अपने बाप पे भी हँसता है? मैं एक बारी छुटपन में शतरंज के खेल में पिताजी पे हँसा. अजी वो थप्पर रसीद करा, कि अगली शाम तक शतरंज खेलने की हिम्मत न बनी. अब ये और बात है, लतखोर प्रवृत्ति थी कि अगली शाम फिर बिसात बिठा ली.

किताबों का शौक था या नहीं, ठीक ठीक याद नहीं. पर पढ़ डाली जो सामने दिखी वो. एक बारी तो रोमानिया का इतिहास तक पढ़ डाला. अब माँ-बाप भी शेखी बघारने में कंधे पे बंदूक रख देते. घर में बर्तन कम, कप-शिल्ड ज्यादा दिखने लगे. कोई बड़ी बात नहीं, अगर मिश्रा अंकल को मेरे क्विज-डिबेट वाली ट्रौफी में चाय पिला दी हो. इसी धक्केबाजी में मेडिकल परीक्षा भी दिला दी. अब तक तो वो मशीन बन गया था, कि एक तरफ से सवाल डालो तो, दूसरी तरफ से जवाब निकले. ये सिलसिला चलता रहा, और मैं पढ़ता रहा. मशीन घिसती, खराब होती, पर धड़धकेल चलती रहती.

अमूमन ऐसे लोगों को रट्टू-घिस्सू, पढ़ाकू कहके भी दुत्कारते हैं. जब जब ये महसूस होता, एक गिटार क्लास या जिम ज्वाइन कर लेता. लेडीज़ हौस्टल के चक्कर मार लेता. या होस्टल सुप्रीटेंडेंट के घर दीवाले में बम फोड़नें में शामिल हो लेता. ऐसा लगा जैसे तालीम दुगुनी हो गयी हो. किताबों मे झुका सर जैसे तन गया हो. मशीन में जैसे जान आ गयी हो.

मतलब जी वो कहते हैं, माँ दा लाडला बिगड़ गया. 

हरे-नीले चश्में पहन, कंधे तक बाल बढ़ा जिम मौरीसन सुनने लगा. रॉक शो में जा बाल को आगे-पीछे करने लगा, जैसे वो धोबीघाट की धोबन करती है. परिपक्वता इस मुकाम पे ला देगी, अंदाजा न था. आईना देखा तो जैसे बिहारी टोन में दिल की आवाज आयी, “साला, धोबी बना दिया बे!”.

समाजवाद और साम्यवाद का वकील हूँ. डॉक्टर हो या धोबी, तालीम तो तालीम है. मेरी दकियानूशी तालीम बदली. और देश भी तो कच्छे से डाइपर तक आ गया. 

………

एक शिरकत अंग्रेजी में भी

Another brick in Deewaar

The lover’s nest a.k.a FOSLA ka ghosla

I learnt most of the Ghazals, when I was lovestruck for the first time and mastered them with each failures and heartbreaks as they say. Somehow the complex urdu poetry absorbs all the woes, while you try to figure out what it actually means. A country exemplary for epitomes of love like Tajmahal to Kamasutra, has incidently the largest inventory of lovelorns, frequently abbreviated as FOSLA (Frustrated one-sided lover association).

Although I had never been a president of FOSLA since there were much strong contenders, I must have played some stupid game like ‘FLAMES’ and sang lovesongs. While giving a debate speech, I would look in crowd for the blue-eyed girl, with my tone fluctuating with her facial expressions. Once I was narrating Subhash Chandra Bose speech in an adrenaline-charged loud voice, and she just gave me a casual smile. The smile turned Bose into some Kamadev (love-god) incarnate, and in a soft enamored voice I said, “Tum Mujhe Pyaar do, Main tumhen Azaadi Doonga” (You give me love, I will give you freedom). Not to mention, I received the punishment #1 – a brutally tiring diatribe (read my old blog).

Well, Shahjahan was a royal Mughal who would have charged his army, captivated Mumtaz’s father and taken her as prized possession.  If Shahjahan were an aam aadmi, he would have roamed around the gully where Mumtaz lived, lifted gas cylinders for her dad, and would have been content with a glass of water offered from Mumtaz. He could have never built Tajmahal, but must had shaved every morning, and walked with his two hands in pocket across Mumtaz, furtively catching a side-glimpse. While the road-side romeos ogle at Mumtaz, Shahjahan would warn, “Tameez se beta! Bhabhi hai.” Mumtaz would have been mohalla’s bhabhi never knowing who the hell is Shahjahan? If anybody dared to whistle, he would pounce like a mughal warrior.

Some shayar said, “Shahjahan tumne Tajmahal banakar, Hum gareebon ka udaya hai mazaak”. (O shahjahan! you made fun of we poor people by making a Tajmahal)

Aurangzeb must have cursed Shahjahan while paying EMIs for his Dad’s Tajmahal. Poor man could never build anything for himself, and no girl gave bhav to the poor king.

Akbar had Jodha.

Salim had Anarkali.

Shahjahan had Mumtaz.

Aurangjeb had Begum who? Probably, one of the founding member of FOSLA Aurangzeb was. Respect!

And what about Kamasutra?

The FOSLA library always had a strong collection of porn, which would be circulated among members, with each member tearing pages of their choices till the last member receives nothing, better termed colloquially as, ‘Babaji ka thullu‘. Whatever would have been the intentions of Vatsyayana in writing Kamasutra, I wonder how its pages are preserved till date.

To say FOSLA is a man-only institution, is a bit biased opinion. From ages, one-sided love was more common in women who would dream of a prince riding on horse. Well, it transformed to a Shahrukh Khan running in knicker later. Whatever movie said, if father is even a bit of Amrish Puri, a girl would never dare to love. These TV soap and romantic movie crazy melodramatic creatures surely form a huge chunk of FOSLA.

Men or women; the young and the old; and the bloggers with long lovelorn letters and poetry. The glory prevails. Long live FOSLA!

When babies came from sky

[adult contents warning: user discretion advised]

One of the prominent politician thinks mobile phones are reason behind child abuse since people are getting easy access to child porn. Quite a funny thought. No smart phones. No child abuse. What an Idea sirjee? Though I laughed at thought, it took me back to the days when porn was limited to some smuggled Hustler magazine or a revolutionary writer called Mastram. Soft porn stuff could be found in some hindi mags like Manohar Kahaniyan or Saras Salil.

As I remember from medschool days, child becomes aware of its own sex by 3 years. In most part of rural India, naked children with the dangling male thingy could be seen running around. When asked, show your mama (maternal uncle), they will proudly point out and run away laughing. Similar innuendos existed for female organs like maternal grandmother or anyone from mother’s family. Unaware, uncorrupt kids would bask naked in mud, pond; chase hen or a spare bicycle tyre; boys and girls alike.

Not only kids, women of Dalit or down-trodden communities would be hardly caring of their attire when they bath in public ponds or would be performing their morning rituals in barren fields. A dalit women with a big ‘ghoonghat’ upto knees was easing herself in morning with her ass facing towards people when a feudally superior one shouted, “Hey you! Turn the ghoonghat towards us, and ass on other side.”

Ignorance of sex and stigmas wasn’t restricted to the lower social strata. In our med school ragging days, we were asked how many holes a female has? Most couldn’t answer. One to pee, and one to shit, was the commonest reply. And mind you, these were chosen geniuses in biology. 

From childhood, its taught that babies either come from sky or we borrow from hospital. This seemed to so deeply creep in, most adolescent males could never imagine a 3 kg baby coming out of a tiny hole. It was unheard, unseen. I have seen village kids playing with balloons made of condoms they pick from rich home’s garbage. They never learnt, since newspaper ads or the large government banners never explicitly mentioned, and TV channels are swiftly switched when a saucy condom ad begins.

For women, things probably happen a bit differently. From ages, they have been trained as a baby-making machines. In south India, arrival of menses is celebrated as a grand function while the poor girl in agonising pain wonders whats wrong with her body. In spite of feeders from elderly females, sex and childbirth remains confusing for many. They just couldn’t imagine how a tiny imperceptible hole would do everything from bleeding every month, to satisfy a man and give birth to a kid-who-looks-mammoth-now. Won’t it just rip the body apart?

Now, many kids have access to umpteen youtube videos and porn collections, even on the smartphones as netajee pointed. On whatsapp, some would send a hot video, other would bounce back, “its old dude.” They know that babies don’t come from sky and would give a naughty grin when parents would explain so. I believe they know sexuality so well, that they would not allow a stranger to grope or abuse them.

But, what about small 3-6 yrs kids who barely learnt to talk, and understand us? 

Author opines-the abuses may end only by two ways-

 1. The netajee way of going back to the days without phone and imposing a blanket porn ban.

2. Improve sexual education ( the good and bad touches) at earliest comprehensible age. 

Chose the 2nd option. They surely love to hear they came out of mummy’s tummy. 

Why Alia Bhatt could be the perfect Indian wife?

In a typical desi pre-nuptial grand analysis,  my friend had to chose among a strikingly beautiful middle-class girl, and a featureless stinking rich girl. He obviously chose the second. His idea of marriage was so flawless and vivid. Right after marriage, he went to those beauty mongers VLCC etc., and ask them to convert his wife to Katrina Kaif in 30 days. After a fortnight, they called, “Katrina toh nahin, kuchh woh Sonakshi-Sonam fusion bana dun. chalega?” [ can we make her sonakshi-sonam fusion instead?] . Whatever, not a bad deal!

Though trends are changing, scepticism about good wife persists. Inspite of all those proven-disproven Alia Bhatt’s dumbness, I believe she would win hands-down in great desi marriage bazaar.

1. A rich family:  Most blatantly flouted laws of India is dowry law, which only props up in divorce cases much later after deal is already done. A celebrity social activist Mahesh bhatt may not give a penny, but still, damaad of bhatt family may atleast get a BMW in vidaai, and some chillar in post-nuptial rituals.

2. An earning wife: Its a growing trend in cosmopolis life since a lone bread-winner can’t manage all EMIs and school fee. So, both bread-maker and bread-winner are poor women (colloquially called abla naari). Even if you are fired, Alia would keep doing shaandaar or some movie to pay the pending bills.

3. A narcissist flatter-loving father-in-law: Indian damaad would love to flatter their father-in-law to get some goodies in return. Just shower praises about his good old Aashiqui days, and his bold moves, Bhatt Saab may offer you something which you would never refuse. May be a movie-contract in sex-loaded murder mystery in exotic locations? You won’t mind a itchy-scratchy dad-in-law boring you with his harangues. Would you?

4. Not-so-hot wife: Indian men drool at  sexy hot women, but would pledge to break your teeth if you ogle at their wives. Maladies of having hot wife can be asked to cricketer Stuart Binny, whose wife is discussed more than his cricket. Alia somewhere fits in that bubbly charming girl who may be spared of lecherous, lewd look probably.

5. Little dumb, as they say:  From ages, the right to grab the newspaper in morning, and switching news and sport channels had been a men thing. Women who do so or get into this social activism etc., end up with divorce. I won’t get into made-up Alia jokes. I am assured she can definitely order things online and get all the household plumbing work etc. I don’t know if she knows cooking a good rajma-chawal though.

6. A stray brother-in-law: Hahahaha! Enjoy! Its all yours now.

Note: Author scribbles satires on gender equality, and this blog is in similar series, and wish not to offend any one. Besides, author doesn’t think any of the male readers would ever get Alia.

Another brick in Deewaar

Some ten people were being trained about cliff-jumping, their legs shaking at the sight of torrential rapids of river Bhagirathi. I knew this training will scare the hell out of me, so I just jumped ignoring all instructions. Only after diving into deep water, I realised I never learnt swimming. My wife was already shouting, “help, help!!”. Life had made me so exam-oriented, that I took it as just another exam. The distance to shore, the requisite velocity and the momentum of rapid…….the genius aced it. 

A peek into Indian schools of yore and present.

The rotes and the notes

Grandpa asked kid the meaning of rhyme “Humpty Dumpty…”. The fledgling convent educated kid said, “I just know the rhymes, not the meaning.”

Grandpa declared, “Convents are based on rote learning. ” (This wasn’t true but grandpa’s words were a dictum). 

I never had any assignments or homeworks since I studied in a dilapidated sarkari (government) school but that came out as a boon. Books became the toys, and innovative mischieves we played in hostel got me into scientific thinking. 

The rhetoric

For many years, it remained a same syllabus and curriculum. My brother would get a brand-new book which he would embellish with plastic covers and colorful marker pens. What I would inherit is, a creased and shabby book and my younger bro would get a thing-once-called-book. 

‘Wars of Panipat’ remained quintessential poser in history papers for years. Ten-year question papers and guess papers were vogue to ace any exam. Nobody cared to frame a new question.

The crouching children and sleeping teacher

Maths lessons were perfect for whooping ass and punishments (read my other blog), and literature lessons for a blissful nap. I had a hindi teacher who would ask to recite a story from textbook para-by-para in turns and sleep off. I always spoke loud, so when my turn came in lesson ‘Ibrahim Gardi’, my para began,

Ahmedshah Abdali said “Dozakh ke kutte!!”

Teacher got up from sleep, and all he heard was loud “kutte” (you dog!!) and slapped me in quick reflex.

The bliss of ignorance

One of the commonest phrase we heard when we were inquisitive, “That’s a very good question. Sit down.”

And that’s it. The answer would never come.

The aura of respect

One of the spiritual leader said, “India has the best culture in world.”

A child with gleamy eyes asked, “why?”

He retorted, “Because we respect our elders and never question back.”

His curiosity would be gagged for entire life, and he would never question.

The filmy fuchhas

The love-duets, the long chats, and emotional breakdowns. I-pills replacing candy-boxes. In my cosmopolitan practice, when I see a 12 weeks innocent fetus in a smiling teenager’s womb, it gives me goosebumps to just imagine its fate. I am not into moral policing but unwanted pregnancy must be avoided.

Schools have come a long way, and originality is creeping in. We all need to just free our mind from the rotes and rhetorics.

Macaulay revisited