Wednesday, May 25, 2005

High on football

The serene little pub by the mill in a sleepy little corner of Reading was to change character. The Liverpool fans were going to ensure that. They came dressed in flashy reds and settled down with their drinks. I was there with a bunch of sales executives from my company. I had spent the day watching them sell a lot of crap to our hapless customers. Pictures of sophistication all, till the game began! By the end of the first half, with the scoreline reading 3-0 in favour of AC Milan, everybody had turned rowdy. There was a guy shouting into the television set "Get back to defence you b******”. Something must have told him that the message didn’t get across, so he tapped the TV on the side a couple of times. Yeah mate, That helped. NOW you got heard.
At half time, I could feel the taut air around me. These guys were really restless. Ten minutes into the second half, oh how the mood had changed. The score was 3-3. The guy next to the TV was now cuddling it, with the look on his face that told me that he was solely responsible for the incredible turnaround. Liverpool eventually won on penalties. Often I think about the days when I used to be a football fanatic, and I wonder if I was insane back then. But today everything made sense.

Saturday, May 14, 2005


I’m ducking and hiding, because my HR Bobby-head is on the prowl. He wants me to fill up the ‘Aspirations’ form and I don’t have the heart to tell him I don’t have any aspirations. Come to think of it I’ve never had any. Of course I did swear by the second-hand ambitions that I picked up from the standard school-boy prescriptions; ‘I want to be a pilot’ , ‘I want to be 6-feet tall’,etc, but never really went beyond that. The only exception to that was a little jihad I picked up for myself in school, to eliminate all ENT specialists of this world. As far as I was concerned, they were the only pests in the world, and I spent considerably amounts of time studying them and plotting their downfall; my own ENTomology if you will.

I’ll have to take you back in time. In school my nose used to act funny and Mom decided to do something about it. We visited the ENT specialist. She contorted my nostrils and veered in. If I thought that was uncomfortable nothing could have prepared me for what came next. She told me that I had an affliction that affected my mental and physical growth. I reacted like any self-respecting teenager, with a red face and complete silence. Before I knew what hit me, she said ‘It probably already has. Look at the blank look on his face.’ My face must have belied the furious pace at which my brain was working to draft a shortlist of dirty names I could call her, because she was now convinced with her hypothesis. She now pushed it in; she asked ‘How does he do in school?’. I knew for all she cared, it was just a rhetorical question. The-answer-my-friend-is blowin-in-the-wind types! My mom took the slight to heart and gave the doctor a piece of her mind. A couple of weeks after this incident, in a show of incredible insensitivity, my father chose to consult the same doctor for a problem he had been having with his ears. He learnt that the doctor had flown away to the UK. My crusade ended right there. Before I could teach her all the lessons I was planning to teach her. Before I could even figure out what hurt my mental development more, my adenoids or the doctor who I thought will cure me.

Meanwhile, I’m working hard on coming up with something phony to satisfy Mr Bobby-head.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

I was going to write a poem

I was going to write a poem. I was going to write about a yacht that was moored too long at the quay. I was going to write about the limpets and the barnacles and the stagnation; about the apprehension of leaving the bay; about the fear of even the placid ocean let alone the tempest; about the parting memories of an inscrutable smile and a glintless eye. But…

Sunday, May 01, 2005

The week

It’s been a crazy week. Program managers breathing their dirty blocks of bad breath down my neck and my mind whirring at 52x with thoughts which, for several reasons, I can’t publish here.

I’ll remember this week as the one in which I made my stage debut as a guitarist. I felt like Jimi Hendrix (incidentally he was dead by the time he was my age), especially this one time when I got too close to the microphone, the feedback noise sounded just like a riff from ‘Star Spangled banner’. The critics are still debating whether that fitted into ‘Neele Neele Ambar’ or not. Funnily, that is one of the few things that I remember about our performance. The three songs we played passed like a flash and the memory is just a blur. I faintly remember that we mysteriously hit some harmony while playing ‘Jaane Jaan’ and I didn’t want it to stop at all.

And German class is definitely as much fun as I imagined it to be.