Apples, Traffic Signals, and the Male Species

April 9, 2009 at 13:12 | Posted in Uncategorized | 8 Comments
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Sri’s decided that she’d give her imaginative muscles a break, and get me to do the thinking and writing. My sincere apologies for delay; this guest post was supposed to come on last week. My name is Arjun, and I feel privileged and honored to be a guest blogger here. The Sloppy Chronicles is gaining a good bunch of readers and why shouldn’t it? The author’s ability to exaggerate mundane acts like getting into the wrong bus or playing down relatively serious events is not very common, and I want to recognize that here. As someone suggested, “It feels like a female Chetan Bhagat.” Yep, it does Sri.

You know how we have these T-shirts during college fests, right? Like much of rock music, these T-shirts are designed by guys and girls under a heavy influence of marijuana. The guys designing the T-shirts are so obsessed with belting out that perfectly-uber-cool-design-that-makes-everyone-go-Wow! that it ends up being mediocre to stupid in most cases. The catch lines, the images, the layout: kids who are hooked on to How I met your mother think that they can outdo the designers at Tantra, or equal the class of Benetton.

In my engineering school I had seen some really bad T-shirts come out during the fests. The colours were all wrong and the material was rag like. Worse still, the price was way too much (the secretaries always felt like the margins from T-shirt sales could fund 3 nights of liquor). But all that never bothered me as much as the graphics on the shirt. In my first November cul fest in college, the catch line on the T-shirt said “NIT-H rocks and … (with an underline).” This corny line was supposed to imply that NIT-H (the name of the college) rocked and that was the bottom-line, WWE style. The humour that came through was dry-to-slapstick at best and never really amounted to much pride for the wearer. We bought them because the shirt had the name of the college displayed on it, and we hoped that people would notice it in trains during the vacation journeys and think highly of us. As the years rolled, the designs kept getting more ridiculous and dumb.

And then, when I became one of the 6 secretaries of the fest I thought exactly what my predecessors had thought: My team will give the best T-shirt this college has ever seen and will ever see. In our team meetings, we discussed as to how people would love our shirts and would go days on end without ever taking it off. Our T-shirt was to be designed around one central idea – if somebody walked into a store and saw this fest t-shirt displayed, they would pick it up because it was attractive. Easier to say than to do!

There were 5 guys and 1 girl in the group of secretaries, and like with all student secretaries, nobody liked us. But we come up with this design:

The front of the T-shirt had on the chest area three little boxes in a row. The first box was red in colour with the image of a white apple in it. The second box (the middle one) was orange with an image of an apple bitten off from the top right. The third box was green in colour with a picture of an apple eaten fully and the stem remaining. So here you have three boxes red, orange and green signifying the traffic lights each showing an apple being eaten at different stages. Below the boxes was the catch line: “BYTE THIS”.

We loved the idea. The picture was abstract with traffic lights and an apple. Somehow the line Byte this sounded techie and also meant bite the apple. But there was one problem. The girl secretary in our team didn’t think this idea was so cool.

“Why, what’s wrong with this?”, I asked.

“Byte this? Arjun, the girls are going to wear this shirt and on their chest it says byte this!” said the girl.

We never spoke another word about that design.

This is why we still have women around on this earth: to save the male species from self destruction.

Whatever happened to good ol’ chivalry?

April 1, 2009 at 00:16 | Posted in Uncategorized | 16 Comments
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Back in my old job, there was no daily commuting facility provided by the company, because they believe in being complete jerks. So the result was me depending on public transport to get to the office on time and back home.

Now one morning on my way to the bus stop, a couple of dudes from my office (one of them had a car) saw me, and stopped. They said that since they live nearby, I can hitch a ride with them daily. I was very happy. Not just because of the car, but also because they seemed nice, they were close to my age, and well, as I was a new employee there, I hadn’t really made too many friends yet.

Time passes. Its a month since I started going with them to office. Thanks to them, other friends of theirs also started talking to me. Soon, obviously because of my charming personality (as if there is a doubt), I have people smiling and talking to me in office instead of pretending I am an amoeba and can’t be noticed with the naked eye. My work-social-life was certainly getting better!

(Yes, you guessed right. I obviously spoke too soon)

Here’s what happened one fine Friday evening (for narration sake, lets call them car-owner-dude and other-dude):

Scene 1: Cafeteria

Me: “Hey there, ready to leave?”
Car-owner-dude: “Yeah, lemme just finish this sandwich”
Other-dude (excited): “Hey man, why don’t we ask her as well?”
Me: “Ask me what?”
Car-owner-dude: “Some of us from office are going out tomorrow evening to check out this new pub, why don’t you come along?”
Me: “Sure, why not?”

Scene 2: Car

(Car-owner-dude and other dude are on a heated discussion on real estate. I am visibly bored, wondering if this is what was in store for me the next evening)

Car-owner-dude: “So Sridevi, do you have a boyfriend?”
Me (woken up from my coma): “Er…what? Oh yeah, yes, I do”

(This is followed by a short conversation with him about Jun. Meanwhile, other-dude is totally silent)

(Odd silence in car)

(Other-dude sighs)

Car-owner-dude (obviously very observant and extremely interested in other people’s lives): “Other-dude, you have been awfully quiet. Why did you just sigh?”
Other-dude: “Its nothing”

(More odd silence in the car)

(Car reaches my home, they promise to let me know what time we are going out the next day, and drives away)

As usual, I am super busy during weekends, trying to forget that a little something called weekdays exist. So it wasn’t until the weekend got over that I noticed I never got a call from either of them. On Monday, I get an SMS from car-owner-dude saying that they have to meet a client, so they won’t be going to office in the morning. Since this used to happen sometimes before, naive little me didn’t find anything suspicious. Later, at office, I ask one of their friends what happened to the weekend plan. She looks super uncomfortable, mumbles something about it getting cancelled, and walks away.

Next day and the day after, same SMS.

The day after that, no SMS, no car.

Meanwhile at office, other-dude is totally concentrating on pretending that I am an amoeba once again. This continues for the next week (forever rather), and it was understood that I am not travelling with them any more. I decided not to ask them anything either. They were not worth it.

It was once again back to my trustworthy public transport system. At least the buses don’t care if I am not single!

PS: I did make a few new friends there who were not complete jerks. So it all worked out pretty well in the end.

Being a multi-linguist can be a bitch sometimes

March 30, 2009 at 10:24 | Posted in Uncategorized | 7 Comments
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This is a true incident that happened in October 2008 to a friend of mine. Lets call him Moo here, because I like the word moo. On popular demand, I have been asked to narrate this incident on my blog, or rather just spread the damn story as much as possible!

So Moo was going back home after his one week trip to meet the rest of us. And surprise surprise! A girl (yes, a female of the human specie) who works with him, actually told him that she will also be traveling with him in the bus on his way back home. For those of you who don’t know him, this is a really big deal.

Moo is excited, and possibly fantasising about the adventures that lay ahead.

Now if you thought Moo was lucky enough to have an actual girl voluntarily deciding to travel with him on an overnight journey, you won’t believe how much luckier he actually was that day! His brother-in-law who had bought the bus tickets, got them (by mistake apparently) for the bus that leaves the next day, instead of starting the same night.

Girl suddenly found herself stranded in a strange place for the night, for she was actually passing through, and she knew nobody here, where she could spend the night. So she decides to stay with Moo and his brother-in-law.

Do you envy Moo yet? Well, hold on to that envy, because there’s more!!

Moo and Girl spends a long evening together, talking, doing random things to pass the night. Brother-in-law has slept long back (one wonders if Moo drugged him). It is past midnight now. Girl is starting to feel sleepy. She had, after all, traveled a long way to get here. So she decides to go to sleep. Moo gets her a blanket, and turns on the ceiling fan and asks her if she needs anything else. Girl gets all cosy and comfy under the blanket, and as Moo watches her, she beckons to him, moving her palm up and down, “come come”.

Moo cant believe his luck. First she wants to go with him overnight in a bus, and now she wants him to join her under the blanket? Moo wants to kill himself and be born again, just to experience this moment once more.

Moo suddenly snaps out of his day (er…night) dreaming, as Girl says something else to him.

“What did you say?”, he asks.

“Kam”, she repeats, “fan ka speed thoda kam karo”!!!

(Translation: Reduce the fan’s rotation/speed a little bit. Kam = reduce)

As you have figured out by now, Girl was feeling too cold with the fan on (the weather here is like living in an air-conditioned room), and she wanted him to reduce its speed a bit. Hence the whole lot of gestures and repeating the word kam/come. Moo, lost in his hopes for a filmy encounter with Girl, had totally jumped at the 1st instance he got (or misunderstood, rather) to make his dreams come true. Little did Moo expect that language was going to be a sadistic bitch in his life.

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