Me Thinks

Tuesday, August 28, 2007


Why haven't I updated my blog in the last 2 weeks? I am a student now. Officially. Started classes and all. Business school would be fun for me, I was told. Soon I'll discover. Being a full-time student is so different from how I had imagined it. Almost all the Indians I've met in class have come here from India. I mean, there is no have-been-here-for-a-few-years types a la myself. Only when I talk to them I realize that I've acquired an accent by virtue of living in this country for so long. Oh no, not because they sound different. Sometimes I think I can sense the expression - "Oh, she has an accent". Or maybe its "Are you displaying your artifical accent to me?" Whatever it is, it'd be sometime before I'd be accepted in that group. And all of them are orkuters and hence know one another. One more reason why I am out of the loop, I don't orkut. More "namma ooru singari business school ponaalaam" experiences would find vent here in the coming days.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Older sibling

Older siblings are fun. Well, no. Being an older sibling is fun. No matter what authority or power you actually acquire in life, your first taste of power is had when you have a younger sibling. An occasional "You have to study well, so your siblings learn from you" from parents and others is not that bad considering the amount of power thats entrusted. I've known so many older brothers who set ridiculous rules for their younger sisters. There is dress code and thats a given. Phone rules are still popular - no talking to guys after 8pm. When confronted with "Hey., you talked to other girls", they go "I know exactly what and how guys talk and hence the rule". Can't blame them. Girls with younger sisters still have the same rule. And the excuse is "I dont want her to commit the same mistakes that I did". Logical! Older siblings, inadvertently, become parents in the above cases.

With two brothers the power a.k.a domination is not that bad, at least comparatively. Maybe because there is no woman involved there.;-) With older sister and younger brother, things are slightly different. The power equation doesn't remain the same through out. I think thats because brothers grow taller and stronger at some point. I have only myself to look as an example. I still reminisce my heydays. Those days I ruled my brother with an iron fist. Flash back some 20+ years.......

It was a summer afternoon. We were visitng our aunt's place. No sane soul would do as much as peep out at that time of the day. But I wanted to go out and my brother had no option but to follow. We went to the nearby park to go on the slide. I decided to slide on the slide while my brother decided to stand at the end of the slide. Once I reached the top, I changed my mind. Instead of going down sitting like its done traditionally, I wanted to lie and fly down with my head leading and my body and feet following. Once I started that, I kept my hand on the slide to balance but it was way too hot. When I reached the bottom, I couldnt stop with my hand as it was too hot, I lost control and did a somersault. No bodily hurt but my pride and ego were severely bruised when I saw the suppresed laughter on my bother's face. He knew better than to laugh out loud then. I looked at him and he apologised. The sorry was so muffled and it was interspersed with laughter. There was laughter, sympathy, fear - you name the expression and he had it on his face. I had to think fast and think of an apt punishment for this gross disrespect. The sorrys came out quickly. I concluded "You slide and fall down in a similar fashion". He was pleading "I am wearing knickers and its too hot". Between every word he uttered, there was a pause and he closed his mouth to control the grin. I would have nothing of it. "You do it or I am not going to play with you from tomorrow. You have no friends, remember?" 10 minutes of pleading and negotiating went on and we were going nowhere. I had to discipline my brother, who else would do it, I thought. You dont laugh when someone falls down, do you? I was telling my own self and was satisfied with my judgment. Someone yelled out my name. It was my aunt's son, my cousin. "You take your your brother and go home right now". My cousin was like my elder brother. I heard it loud and clear. I had to follow it in letter and spirit. I held my brother's hand, got an approval nod from my cousin and headed home directly, no questions asked. And never talked about what had happened in the park. Hmmmm, those were the days........

Saturday, August 11, 2007

The 82

I think people like me will support Sachin even if he scores 10 ducks in a row. He got 91 in the last test and now 82. Statistics would suggest that he sored big in back-to-back matches. But one should have seen that innings. The only thing worse than watching that 82 innings would have to be watching "Vayalum Vaazhvum" on DD1. Sachin remind yourself "I am Sachin Tendulkar, India's greatest batsman" and do justice to that title.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Hindi - Indian

When I was in school I used to think being a North Indian is cool. I used to think North Indians were very "forward" thinking. My N.Indian friends' moms wore salwars and had lipstick on most of the time. That was my idea of being "forward" at that age. When I saw my neighbour aunty cover her head with her "ghoonghat" everytime she went past her mother-in-law, I thought they were not as cool as I had assumed. But the girls from N.Indian families never had bindi/pottu and sang "Ek do teen" songs, which was way too cool. My impression of them wavered between cool and uncool. And yes, eventually I realized that the enthusiasm for dressing up isn't in anyway related to "progressiveness".

The cousins or friends visiting from N.India too acted like North Indians. They sang hindi songs, girls never donned pottu, used "accha" frequently (I am thinking of Sowcar Janaki from Iru kodugal now) and definitely seemed cool. Being able to talk in hindi gave them some sort of a superiority complex I guess. And whenever I could, I tried to prove that my spoken hindi was good. So I am one up - I thought. Chaste Chennai tamil and good "shuddh" hindi. But heart of hearts, over the years, I have developed intolerance for one group of people - non-hindi speaking ones settled in North India, who assume knowing hindi is as important as knowing the letters of the alphabet. Run for life if you come across such characters. Its easy to identify them in a group.

- They keep saying, even if its out of context, that their tamil or telugu is not that good. They have a proud smile if you point it out to them.
- Even though they had lived in some South Indian city for a few years, they disown it with a vengeance.
- They talk proudly about how all their friends are hindi-speaking ones. They claim they listen only to hindi songs and talk only in hindi at home (so unlike N.Indians settled in the south. They dont disown their mother-tongue definitely.)

No matter how much of a hindi-peter they pretend to be, they will always be classified as "Madrasis" by their peers.

Disclaimer - A rule can be prroved only if there are exceptions. And I've seen enough exceptions. Some of them are my close friends too. But people, you know I dont include you in that group, dont you?