Whom are you wearing?

The first time I heard this, on TV, I was amused. How can you be ‘wearing’ someone? Yeah, designer wear!
Everyone of us would want to wear something elite, classy and designer, atleast once. I’m not just talking about women, men too are crazy about it, they call it ‘branded stuff’.

Well it doesn’t end there. People are judged based on the brands they wear. “Oh! You bought this in an exhibition? Urgh! My stuff is custom made.” There are more chances of finding something exactly like it than the one from the exhibition. A person wearing plain T-shit with a high class brand name/symbol etched across it is considered to have a better dressing sense than the wearing a better looking low-class/no-brand T-shit/top.

If designer/branded stuff isn’t nice to look at (like the plain Tees), what is it that the buyers want? “Branded stuff stays longer”, someone said. Would they wear the same Tee for 5 years? Obviously not. They wouldn’t wear it again because they have that picture of theirs on facebook in which they are already wearing it. Repeat it again? No way!

Then what’s the fuss about? Why pay thrice the amount for something that’s not worth it. I fail to understand.
Before you ask me I’ll confess. I too like wearing branded stuff. 😀 But I woudn’t pay 1000 rupees for something worth Rs.199/- only. I too dream of wearing that one fairy-tale like dress that no one in this world would have. But, custom made for me would mean, something I’d be comfortable wearing and something that’d make me look my best at the same time. Be it from that designer store or from the tailor at the end of the street.

Branded clothes don’t make you a better person and fetch you better friends. You will be talked about, TILL someone wears something better. The sooner one realizes this, the better it will be.

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And School Begins

As the month of June begins, the excitement associated with the beginning of a new academic year infects me, even when I’m about to turn 21 next week. 😀
As a child, June was my favorite month, ‘course because my birthday falls in June and also because school started on June 12th. My school had (probably still has) a ritual of distributing books on the date which coincided with my class, 2nd class on June 2nd, 5th class on the 5th and so on. To bring home those books and cover them with brown sheets with my older cousin’s help and search frantically for those perfect labels to claim my possession of the books was such an important task to be completed with perfection. Our school’s ‘calender’ contained the list of events that would be conducted during that year. The countdown would begin right from the first day. The best part for me was to glance through all the text books and see what I’d be learning that year. New books have a characteristic smell, enough to arouse inquisitiveness in me to sit down and read it all at a go. I’d read all the books, completely,  related to the English subject. Ah! What joy it brought.

My mother and I would go shopping for my new dress, shoes,socks, bag, lunch basket and pencil box. If any of these items from the previous year were functioning properly, I wouldn’t have the privilege of owning a new one, except for the dress and shoes, ’cause I’d grow tall every year. 😀

The first day in school was an experience in itself. We’d meet after two months of holidays. Unlike kids now-a-days, we would hardly ‘go out with friends’ during the vacation. All those who went on holiday trips would rattle off their experiences and those who didn’t, like me, would form the audience and listen to their tales with awe (read, Jealousy). We’d wait enthusiastically  to see who taught us and introduce ourselves to her.

After being promoted to the Middle section (class 5 to 7), we were the ‘didis‘ to the Primary section and Kindergarten kids. KG kids would throw tantrums near the school gate and we’d escort them to their class, like bosses. 😀
If the kid was a teacher’s daughter, then the pride would increase exponentially.

Every 12th of June I’d make some promises to myself, almost the same ones. 😛
1) I will not scribble in the last page of any book.
2) I will not tear any papers from my notebook, especially, ‘pin pages’ or the middle pages.
3) I will not let any ink leak into my pencil box and maintain it properly till the end of the year.
4) I will polish my shoes everyday and wash my canvas shoes every Saturday so that they continue to appear new till the sports day.
5) I will put in extra effort while drawing and draw all my science diagrams myself in the record book. (As in, without using a trace paper)

I did not have to put in anything about studies because mommy dearest took care of that part, till class 6 atleast.

Life was so nice back then. Sigh! 🙂

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Good Morning!

Life after graduation changes, drastically, with feelings similar to those after watching an Indian movie full of drama. What I miss most is the “Good Morning” from a lot of people on my way to the bus stop.

1) The little school kid
She’d wait for her school bus with her mother, a few blocks away from my apartment. She never actually greeted me “Good Morning”, but would ask for the time. “Didi! What’s the time?” . “8:03” I’d reply.
One fine morning, the same kid ‘greeted’ me with “Aunty! What’s the time?”.
“Now now now… I’m just about 18-19 and if I wear that school uniform of yours I’d be sitting in class with you if it took looks to get an admission in school”, I wanted to shout back.
But I couldn’t. “8:03”, I replied softly.
The next day, she addressed  me as ‘Didi‘ again. And the day after that, ‘Aunty’. Then I noticed a pattern. I was Didi to her if I wore jeans/skirt and aunty if I wore a chudidaar.
Ah! clever girl. I know.
This sister-niece relationship didn’t just end there. She’d be there in the park when I went to play badminton. It was probably there that she decided to call me Didi and stuck to it. Phew! What a relief!

2) Thatha
An old man in his 80s used to sit just outside his gate on a plastic chair, smoking beedi. Initially it started with a smile. Then my father started greeting him. (Yes, he walked me to the stop).
I used to hold dad’s hand like in the picture. (Not wearing that dress though :P) and walk to the bus stand. This thatha observed us.
One fine morning, I probably was holding something and did not hold dad’s hand. “Pattuko amma! Daddy paaripotharu (Hold him dear, otherwise dad will run away)” he chuckled. That man has wit I say!

                                                 Image

3) Silent Soumya
She was my classmate in school and was a very quiet girl. So quiet, that we could hardly hear her answer the attendance.
She used to wait for her bus on the other side of the road, wave on seeing me and mouth a “hai”. I’m sure I’d still hear the same number of decibels had I been beside her. 😛

4) Another school kid
This kid was from my school. I’d see her wait for her auto and go to school before my bus arrived. She was atleast 6 years junior to me and there was no way I knew her at school.
One fine evening, I was walking towards platform no. 5 to catch a train to Tirupathi. I saw her. We waved and said hai, but I couldn’t recollect where I knew her from. I’m getting old, I know.
Later when I came back to Hyd, I realized that it was the school kid from the bus stop. 😀

5) Two Uncles
Both of them never acknowledged my presence. One Uncle would park his grey i10 on the side of the road I stood and meet the second uncle near the coconut bandi on the other side. They’d talk, I don’t know what, but it seemed rather important, always. This happened everyday, everyday I took the bus. I wanted to check on Sundays too, just for the heck of curiosity, but could never do. I should do that sometime soon. 😛

Yes yes, I am jobless. Thank you for reading my out-of-sheer-boredom blogpost. 😀

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House’s Name

A seven year old, dressed in pattu pavadai, appeared in front of the examiner for her Praveshika Pratham exam in Karnatic Vocal.

After the exam:

“Hmm…S—–a.G . ” she said, inspecting the candidate’s appearance. “Yes Ma’am!”,  the kid squeaked in a frightened tone. “Do you speak Telugu?” she asked. “Yes ma’am, I do”, the little one replied.
Mee inti peru enti? (What is your surname) ” the examiner questioned with enthusisasm.

In telugu, surname is referred to as inti peru, which literally translates to ‘house’s name’ or ‘ghar ka naam‘.

The little girl’s grandmother’s house was named “Swarnangi” and the poor thing thought that is what an inti peru is. The letters are etched across the gate.

“Our house doesn’t have a name ma’am. We live in an apartment”, she replied innocently.

😛 😀 No prizes for guessing, it was me!

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Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara

I have to learn to dance. It’s now or never. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to learn to do the bank stuff and stop asking for dad’s help. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to put in effort, NOW, if I want to see my dream come true. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to visit Leh & Ladakh with dad, before he starts complaining like mum. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to get back to writing poetry, like in school, or I might lose the flair for it. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to make money and take amma round the world, like I promised her. Dono ki Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to start accepting the fact that today’s best friend can be tomorrow’s enemy and vice versa and stop being emotionally attached to them & cry about the way they treat me. If they make me cry, they don’t deserve my time and attention, they just don’t deserve me. Period. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to start giving time for manodharma sangeetham and make my aalapanas better. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to workout everyday and not just when I don’t fit into a dress I like at the store. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to get stuff working on the “career” front soon so that I can teach kids, like I always wanted to. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to understand what chess is all about. The game doesn’t fascinate me much, but I’m curious. Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara.

 

I have to record this song from ZNMD and get someone to mix the karaoke track for me, before I want to do anything else.

Here’s the link along with the lyrics! 🙂
http://www.lyricsmint.com/2011/06/khwabon-ke-parindey-znmd-songs-lyrics.html

 

Zindagi Nahin Milegi Dobara….

 

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On 23rd Oct’ 2011

It might be easy to get out of the central jail, but College N seemed impossible. After a long line of permissions, I got out of college on a sunny and hot afternoon and hired an auto. As I was calculating the number of calories I’d be consuming(I was going to McD :P) and what I could order so as to minimize the intake. One question interrupted my calculations.

AD (as in Auto Driver) : (in telugu) Is college running smoothly? (The question was with regard to the ongoing Telangana agitation)

me : Yes uncle, the windows of one of our buses were broken yesterday morning, but we have to go on. Otherwise we wont be able to complete our portion. If the semester is delayed, we students will be at a loss. (Don’t ask me if i mean it, ok? Arey yaar, sab yehi kehte hain..toh maine bhi… :P)

AD : Are u in the final year amma ?

me : Yes uncle…

AD : N college is very famous, ‘no’? (The famous, Indian-interrogative-‘no’)

me : (smiling) Yes uncle…

AD : Girls college, no?

me : (not smiling)Yes uncle …

AD : how many days of classes have u lost amma?

me : 3 1/2 weeks nearly. If it goes on this way, then we’ll have to postpone our academic year. We final year students will be at a loss. Job traning procedures and the academic year for higher studies start next june.

AD : Are u working amma ?

me : No uncle, not yet. I’ll start next year. We have some software companies which visit our college and select students…(and I tried to tell him about campus placements)

AD : Oh…Campus placements aaaahh….!

me : Yeahh..!! (embarrassed)

AD : So u got a job?

me : Yes uncle…. two-two ( I mean I didn’t say ‘two-two’ literally, just translated the ‘do-do’/’rendu-rendu’ phrase 😛 )

AD : Very nice amma….congrats…! Where ?

me : Infosys and Accenture, uncle.

AD : Infosys is Indian,no ? Narayana Murthy’s ?

me : Yes uncle…

AD : And accenture is foreign ?

me : Yes uncle…foreign…

AD : You dont want to go to foreign ? For M.S… ?

me : No uncle. I want to give it a try here first. If it doesn’t work out here then I might consider going abroad, but as of now, I have no such plans.

AD : Very good amma. Why should we pay them money? And after all that, you never have job security, people are ready to work in super markets there but find it below dignity to drive an auto here. My brothers-in-law are in Australia.They are B.tech grads, went to Aussie, finished their M.tech and are driving cars there. What is the difference between them and me ? Just the vehicle we drive!

me : Hmmmm….

AD : If you young people dont stay here and develop our country, who else will ? Look at these people fighting for Telangana  “mere baap ka kya jaatha” attitude is what they have. When the capital is like this, how will the state develop ?

me : Yeah…true…

AD : Everyone wants to go to US-UK-Australia, look at what’s happening with the rupee-dollar-share market-gold price (oh yes…he discussed each of those four topics…and actually discussed SENSE)

me : (added a few inputs into the discussion)

Then I reached McD and had to go. I paid him (Btw, I paid according to the meter) and waved him good-bye.

If even one of these politicians have 1% of the thinking capacity and direction that this auto driver has, we all would live in an absolutely different Andhra Pradesh.

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7 Top Things That Could Happen To The Bad Guy

1) Beautiful house
The bad guy always has a very beautiful house with beautiful gardens and paintings and passages. We can’t be jealous though, he has to stack up all that black money somewhere!

2) Good food
In order to remember a lot of (bad) details, the bad guy would require lots of energy. So his cook would prepare good food and serve the same in the beautiful kitchen of his beautiful house.

3) Always referred to by the lady of the house
If a child throws tantrums and doesn’t eat, the mother would threaten the kid saying, “Eat now! Otherwise the bad guy will eat it.” 

4) Advertisements in the news 
There’d be special editions about the bad guy, that too in the front page or a discussion at prime time on the most watched news channel. And who would be discussing it? Some other bad guy ‘course! Who else would know better? 😉

5) Hot girlfriends
Bad guys and hot girls always go together, be it on-screen or off-screen. That the hot girls realise and back off later is another story, but who cares! 

6) A lot of followers
Need I say more? 

7) A purpose in life
For every bad guy, there’s always a good guy who creates a challenge to fight for and thus the bad guy realises his purpose in life.

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I wanna do fraandship ya!

Hi! I want to be your friend. I’m out of a bad relationship and I’m not able to forget my ex and move on with work. I googled about various ways in which I can move on and google suggested that I make new friends and so I’m sending you this friend request. Accept it if you want to, otherwise I can understand. 

 

I received this message in the ‘others’ folder on facebook, which meant it wasn’t from someone who shared mutual friends with me. How easy it was for this person to open up to a stranger and pour his heart out. A lot of us find it so easy to talk about our troubles to an unknown person. (Ah! I know countless books and movies that are based on this)

A friend of mine said it was another strategy that the sender used to gain attention through sympathy. But would a relationship (need not necessarily include love, it can be friendship too) based on a lie survive inspite of there being sincerity and integrity? 

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Cherry Tomatoes! :D

This is my mother’s experiment. It was 21 years ago, in Boston, that she made it. She was carrying me then, probably the reason why I like this dish so much.

 Ingredients
Cherry Tomatoes
Green Chillies
Curry Leaves
Ginger garlic paste
Onions
Cloves
Shah Jeera
Cardamom
Badam
Kaju
Roasted Ghas Ghas
Roasted and Dried coconut
Tamarind juice
Turmeric
Salt
Chilly Powder
Dhaniya powder
Garam masala powder
Coriander Image

Slit the tomatoes so that they cook well.

Add the spices, ginger-garlic paste, onions and green chillies to hot oil and saute till the onions turn translucent. Add turmeric, tomatoes and curry leaves and let the tomatoes cook.

 Image

Grind the ghas ghas and dried coconut to a thick paste. Add water as er the requirement. This paste forms the base for the gravy. So the texture can be varied according to individual choice. Add the paste to the curry .

Image

Add water, two tea spoons of tamarind juice, salt and chilly powder and bring it to boil.
Grind badam and kaju (four each) into a paste and add it. This adds an extra taste to the dish. It can be skipped if you wish to.
Just when the curry is completely cooked, add a pinch of garam masala powder and dhaniya powder.
Garnish the dish with coriander leaves.

Here’s my final product!

Image

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Chemical Locha

This term sounded funny to me when I first saw Lage Raho Munna Bhai. It was used to describe hallucination in layman terms. The human brain is such a complex network that it still has unanswered challenges for the scientists-dreams, sub-conscious memory, hallucinations et al.

I remember waking up to the dream(nightmare) of seeing my cousin dead and crying my heart out to my mother. She would console me saying such dreams let go off the effect of the evil eye(Drishti). I still dream about walking up a flight of circular stairs which lead me no where. Some of them are silly, like finding my younger self being forced to marry an older man, finding out that my school turns into a graveyard at night, the tailor is not a tailor but a skeleton, lost in a new place and searching for the toilet. Some of them are scary, a lot of them include the death of dear ones. Does any of this make sense? Do they have a meaning? Is someone trying to tell something to us?

A Pandit in a temple I visit frequently, quit his career as a real-estate agent, and decided to work for the temple, because God appeared in his dreams and asked him to do so. I find it amusing that ‘God’ had to ‘ask’ someone, if it is the truth. A fellow blogger, IHM, mentioned about a dream, which left her at peace.

I’ve been dreaming (I mean, aspiring) about getting into a certain institution. The entrance is due in march’2012. I’ve never wanted anything this bad. It’s almost the only thing I think about. I’m putting in all the effort I can. I even dream(literally,dream I mean) about it everyday. Each one of these dreams seems so real, like I am there. So real, that it makes me guilty if I spend time with family or friends. So does this mean dreams can be stressful? I wonder…

The human brain really is such a complex thing.

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