Thursday, April 29, 2010

State of the art

Prescript: It has been an insane week at work. Work on Hopscotch will start in the coming long weekend (yeay!).


So I was on the phone with my sister this morning.

Me - Where's Aish?

Sis - Inside. Sulking.

Me - Sulking? Why?!

Sis - Major bawling episode.

Me - What happened?

Sis - Oh wait... she's here.

Me - So what happened??

Sis (to Aish) - What now? You're here to complain to your Mausi?

Aish (timidly) - Yesh.

Sis - Well then go ahead!

Aish - Mausiiiii?

Me - Yes, baby. What happened?

Aish - Mom threw my drawings in the trash.

Me - WHAT?!

Aish - Yesh. The trash is for dirty things. She threw my drawings in the trash.

Me - And then what happened?

Aish - And then I cried.

Me - And then?

Aish - And then she took them out.


Sis - Hey bhagwaaaan... She brings back like ten of them every day from school! I kept one and threw the rest. They're all the same anyway!

Me - What did she draw???

Sis - Nothing! Just random lines scribbled all over the page!!

Me - Aish, what did you draw?

Aish - It was a dinosaur.

Me - :|

Monday, April 26, 2010

Back... and forth


First of all, a big sorry to all bewdas who commented on the last post and did not hear back. Secondly, a big sorry to all bewdas who live in the west coast of the US and offered to meet up with Viv and me; we were on this crazy whirlwind road trip with not much internet access (*gasp*) and may have in our haste, even skipped some very upset relatives.

Now that I am back, I just need to shake off this jet-lag (deja vu... the last post I wrote was also in a state of extreme jet-lag) and more importantly, the end-of-vacation doom. And as soon as I am done, I will get down to neglecting the bar again. Erm, I mean I will be on Hopscotch for a while posting photos and details about our California vacation. But I will be sure to reply to the comments on the last post before that.

See you guys again soon, at Hopscotch, or right here, at your friendly neighbourhood bar. Don't be too good! ;)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

In-flight entertainment

Snippets from my flight to LA:

- The stopover at Tokyo was fun. I saw some highly entertaining features for users to select on their high-tech toilets. Music. Spray intensity. Powerful deodorizer (yes, the button actually said Powerful deodorizer. Flushing sound volume. Wait a minute... Flushing sound volume?? You get to pick if it should be whoosh or WHOOOOOOSH? Hahahahaha!

- Got frisked by a Japanese female security officer who exclaimed "Hoi!" with every movement she made. I was quite alarmed, but later a friend told me that she was actually saying "Hai" which in Japanese means "Yes." Erm, I am still quite alarmed.

- Every time I fly with Viv, he orders a special vegetarian meal which is almost always better than mine. So this time I ordered it, but since I was flying alone, I was all prepared for Chef Murphy to give me the crappiest meal on the aircraft. To my surprise, I had nice rajma and paneer and parathas which were being eyed enviously by my fellow passengers.

- So I had an aisle seat in a row of four seats and I was hoping the other seats would stay empty so I could stretch all I want. But this long-haired musician (saw him with a guitar after I got out of the airport) came and sat right next to me. I was hoping he'd at least move to the other aisle seat but he didn't budge. After the plane had taken off, he unbuckled his seat belt and I went "Yeay!" in my head. My joy was short-lived. The dude lifted all the armrests in between, lay down and went to sleep, occupying all three seats! And the worst part was that his long blonde hair would fall on my armrest every time he turned in his sleep so I had to very carefully brush it all away so he wouldn't wake up thinking I had yanked his hair! (Btw, it is extremely creeeepy to touch a stranger's hair when they are asleep.)

- Because of the above situation, I couldn't sleep at all and decided to watch movies instead. Watched Tum Mile and All The Best and Blue. Tum Mile was not bad but the directors need to know that when you make a movie, at least ONE of the lead pair needs to be a little good-looking yaar. No wonder the movie bombed. The best friend (who died, as all best friends in Hindi movies are destined to) was better-looking than Soha and Emraan put together. I will say though, that Emraan Hashmi still looks good in glasses. *ducks to avoid joota chappal* All The Best is a DHAKKAN movie. So is Blue. Okay did anyone else notice that in Blue, when Sanjay Dutt's house is being shot at by the bad guys, he pauses to -- get this -- PUT ON HIS SUNGLASSES before he starts shooting back at them????

- My co-passenger who was sitting in front of me asked me if I was a student. YIPPEEE!! The only time I was in a more jubilant age-related situation was when I was asked for my ID at a casino entrance.

- My co-passenger (the same one as above) and I saved this Indian's dude's baby --- he had plonked the stroller with the baby on the airport bus and the stroller started rolling away backwards about to fall off the bus when we grabbed it. Forget thanking us, he did not even look at us. He just took the stroller from our hands and walked away. Badtameez teri phat jaaye kameez!

- This is only my third visit to the US but I have noticed one thing about the folks at the immigration counters -- they are either super grumpy or super cheerful. The one I got at LA asks me where I am going to stay. "My husband's cousin's place." I say. "So you're married?" He asks. "Yes" I say. "Whyyyyyyy?" He says in a tone of despair. As I look at him in surprise, he starts typing on his keyboard and says, "Okay I have just dropped your husband an email asking him why he married you and ruined my chances." I gape at him, wondering how bored the poor fella must be at his job to say all this.

- The customs guy asked me whose address I had put on the form. "My husband's cousin" I said. He looked up, to his left, and then to his right, as if I had just said, "Meri mummy ki behen ki beti ke pati ke bhai ka beta" and he was working it out. Then he said, "Hmmm... so... is that your... cousin-in-law or something?" Before I could say "I guess you could say that." he started wondering at his own question "Is that even a term...? Hmmm". Ok these guys ARE really bored.

That's all for now. I'm terribly jet-lagged and in severe need of some sleep. I guess I just have one last mandatory thing to do before I go to bed. Put on my sunglasses.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

This day and age

It all started with a midnight phone call from Dubai.

"Bhai... budday bolke is hafte ka hafta dabbal karne ka kya?"

Oh wait, that was the wrong call. Pretend you didn't read that. Reboot reboot.

So... as I was saying, it all started with a midnight phone call from Dubai. Two of my beshtesht friends Reghu and Aathira had called to wish me as I reluctantly hung on to the last few minutes of what I prefer to call "my previous age". So I complained to them about Viv who has gone off to Vegas leaving me alone on my birthday. (Okay fine, before you guys start imagining Viv as the sharaabi juaari pati from a 70s' Hindi flick blowing away our lifetime savings, let me sing "Bhala hai bura hai jaisa bhi hai, mera pati mera devta hai" and then clarify that he has gone there on work.)

So yeah, it was my birthday. And it didn't seem to have started on a good note at all. I had to wake up at 6.30 am for an early morning video conference with a manager in our Melbourne office. Something had gone horribly wrong with a publication from last year and he wanted to discuss it urgently. So I dragged myself to work early in the morning and stationed myself in the video conference room along with two of my colleagues who were also attending the meeting. Before I had time to wake up properly, I saw them closing in on the glass walls of the meeting room. The office gang, ambushing me in the meeting room with a whole cheesecake!

"What... But the... video conference... Melbourne... you guys... so early..." was all I could say before I realised the royal prank they had played on me. It seems the manager in the Melbourne office was also in on the prank when he had requested for that "urgent meeting". He had sent me a very elaborate email about the "problem" he wanted to discuss, and had even booked a video conference room in Melbourne! Ah, what drama. He sent me an email later to apologise for not being able to make it to our "meeting" because -- get this -- "I was in a REAL meeting." LOL!

I was so touched that all of them had woken up early to spring this surprise on me. We had a cheesecake breakfast in the pantry, where I proceeded to dissect the events of the previous day, and how well they had managed to hide it from the surprise queen herself. (Yeah, I used to be the birthday surprise queen in the office too before I retired last year.) I was going "AHA! That's why...!" every now and then. One of the "meeting attendees" had actually changed his Outlook communicator status message to say, "Argh, not another early morning meeting!" Nautanki! (You guessed it, I'm packing him off to Karan Johar's office right away.)

Later that afternoon, my ex-team (we had a restructuring recently) came by with my favourite flowers -- pink gerberas. This was followed by another slice of cheesecake delivered to my desk by four of the craziest editors in my office. It was so awesome!

In the evening, I went to Holland Village for dinner with the usual suspects -- the very awesome people without whom my birthday wouldn't be complete. Plus Mexican food and margaritas. And more cake and more gifts. Yippeee! The restaurant played "Happy birthday" in Spanish when the cake came out, which led me to believe that no matter what the language, this touching tune means only one thing - "You are OLD."

The margaritas took effect pretty quickly, because Pizzadude and I had already started giggling, and Shub suddenly sang out, "THUMS-UP!" making me bellow, "TASTE THE BLUNDER!" Sumanth was the only dignified one at the table. Even Clueless, who otherwise holds her drink well, seemed a bit talli, but I won't elaborate further because she is a teacher, committed to mould the future of her students (actually their future already looks pretty mouldy to me), and it would be highly inappropriate of me to share her margarita stories until I have firmly ascertained that at least 70% of her students read this blog.

Thanks to the birthday notification feature on Facebook, I had more than a 100 birthday wishes waiting for me when I got home. And strangely, I did not have the cynical "As if you guys remembered on your own!" feeling which I would have had a few years ago. I just felt really happy that even with the Facebook prod, people would take the time to type a birthday message for someone. Sign of maturity, eh?

Another sign of maturity -- a school friend from my Bhai days sent me a message, "Bhai, ab bandook ki goli ke din gaye, calcium ki goli ke din aa gaye." I think I laughed for a full five minutes when I read that.

I was also particularly thrilled when the in-laws called to tell me that they had sponsored dinner for all the kids in an orphanage for my birthday. What a super idea and what a beautiful gift.

I think there is only one drug to treat the 'I feel old' problem people face on their birthdays. It's the 'I feel happy' wonder drug, and I sure had a rather large dose of that.

And now, since we have reached the end of the post, I have to make the customary "I am wiser by a year" statement/advice for all bewdas (including myself), and here it is:

The older we get, the more awesome it is if we're fit. So let's get off our fat asses and do something about them instead. :D

Sunday, April 11, 2010

In the wrong hands

I was watching Neil Nitin Mukesh and Abhay Deol in Farah Khan's show 'Tere mere beach mein' on Youtube. I had no idea both of them were SO hilarious. Check out the game they play and the presence of mind they show (you can skip the first 3 minutes of the video, the fun starts after that).

Original Youtube video here

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Power play

Baby Aish (on the phone) - Hi, Mausi!

Me - Hi, Aish!

Aish - What are you doing?

Me - I'm not feeling well, baby. Mausi has a bad cold.


Aish (in a stern, accusing tone) - Mausiiii... Did you also go out and play in the snow???

Monday, April 05, 2010

Honey I took your money

So I was mad at Viv for something and did what any mature grown-up would do in such a situation -- clanged some pots and pans in the kitchen as loudly as I could and stormed off to lock myself in a room away from the computer room where he was. I had my phone on me and I eyed it every few minutes, waiting for a note of apology.

And then came an sms message. I opened it, ready to forgive him at once, and what do I see in the message?

From: DBS (my bank)
Message: "You have completed an immediate funds transfer of S$XXXX to Viv on 02/04/10."


(Yes, I know every few months he does an internet transfer from my account to his because our house loan installments are deducted from his account, but this was SO not the time to do it.)

Where were you, men, when tact was being handed out? :)