Monday, February 28, 2011

Porn Nights - The interlude.

Ten days of vacation and I have been made as redundant as the sofa I am sitting on. Except for the mandatory signing of vouchers and reconciling the bank statements, I am not needed. When I left I was the fulcrum. Today I am sitting on the periphery, a mute spectator. But I must confess that I am watching not without pride. Two months back these very boys were hesitant, stammering and stumbling. Now they walk with confident steps, smug in their ability.

Everything around is moving with slick precision. The meter reading from the cellar has been taken. The dine -in is spick. The cutlery is clean. The pasta is ready. The soup is boiled and ready to be served. The ovens have been switched on. The inventory has been checked. The monthly report is being prepared. Not much variance. No wastages. Losses within limits. The auditor has given them 96%.

One small glitch. I am delighted. I notice that both the ACs in the dine-in are on. With a knowing air, I tell Sandeep that we don’t switch on both the ACs at 10am. Politely, he informs me that they will run it for some time till the room is cool and then switch off one of them. My ego has been pricked. I sit down. They have built a wall around them with their skill and dedication which I would be unable to pierce and find my way back to the old days. Nothing much to do I simply observe.
The ice delivery boy comes. As usual he is carrying the ice in the right hand and with the left hand he is playing on the window as he walks leaving a sweaty trail. The shift –in- charge shouts. I smirk. This is routine. The kid doesn’t change. He has seventeen rupees and seventy five paise change, the balance of his bill. Sandeep groans. He has to be paid every day and he brings the same amount every day. We requested him many times to take the money weekly or fortnightly. But no.
Reitesh is as usual late. I know the precise moment when his hand would caress his hair. At the door he would wait momentarily, cough and then open. After the second window, his hand goes up. I smile once again.

No one is aware of my birthday. i have guarded it well. I feel proud like a virgin bride. As one grows , birthdays become more of an embarrassment.

With nothing much to do, I think of our date tonight.

Just then the mobile rings. It’s a new number. “ Happy birthday, writer.” I jump with a start. Its weirdo I am sure.

“ Hi there.” I pretend nonchalance.

“ Don’t pretend. I can see you jump.” I am sitting near the window and there is just the greenery.
“ I am watching you.” She giggles. Is she weird. She is watching through a pair of binoculars from one of the apartments of Premier green woods!!!

I am fazed. So to change the subject , I ask, “ what time are we meeting.”

“ we are not. Birthdays are meant to be celebrated with near and dear ones.”

I tell her we are a long distance family. Our love oozes out when we are far. When we are in the same house, we sit in different rooms and chat on gtalk.
Our family never meets in the living room. It’s the facebook. And we don’t laugh. We lol.

She has an easy laugh.

“And I thought I am weird.” Ok so are we meeting?

She signs off saying she will give it a think. My bet is she wont come.

I am sure I will be left with my bottle of Chivas Regal, which my partners had thoughtfully packed when I was leaving. And I am not complaining.
We both make a great pair. I mean Chivas Regal and me.

I couldn’t agree more with her. “Birthdays are meant to be celebrated with some one you love.”

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Porn Nights II

If I were asked to name the biggest sadist in the world , I would unhesitatingly name Dr. Martin Cooper. This guy has single handedly destroyed more homes by inventing mobiles than all the liquor in the world put together.
I can imagine all the young ladies sneering at this perfectly personal and logical theory with a monosyllable , “Duh”. Now Duh is to women, what fcuk is to men. The Norwegian nobel committee should seriously consider awarding a nobel prize for literature to those great men who invented these words. The world of literature would have been that much poorer without these great contributions. Half the world would go dyslexic. How many words can we toss up, which can be used in every conceivable way- verb, adverb ,adjective, gerund(now I got a little carried away).
Coming back to those lovely damsels, I do understand that the mobile to them is a life saving appendage more important than even a pacemaker and that they spend almost half of the day on it, but seriously girls ,have you considered the risks associated?
A couple of examples would suffice. A man is cheating on his wife. Pangs of guilt have destroyed his happiness. So he decides to give his wife a day to remember.
He comes home early, with a bouquet of her favourite lilies and food ordered from again her favorite, Mainland china. They have a great candle lit dinner with Frank Sinatra and Champagne for company.
Everything is picture perfect. The tense husband , afraid that nothing goes wrong ,decides to have a shower before the last act. His bad luck, that when he is in the shower, his flame, whose number he has so imaginatively saved as ‘kitten’ because she is so soft and cuddly, calls up. The wifey, who normally doesn’t give a damn about his phone has now been softened by all the pampering, lovingly picks up the phone. She feels its her duty to help her ‘stressed with business’ husband.
Now, God , while creating Kitten wanted to be fair. So he reduced the size of her brain to that of a lima bean while showering her with bigger assets elsewhere. “ Hi Duhling. Hope that old bitch is not listening.” The kitten purrs seductively not for a moment thinking . The old bitch is not only listening but listening loud and clear. The kitten can say good bye to her Tomcat for ever. There would be just one mouse left.
Consider another situation. You are in the train and are an insomniac like me. With a great difficulty you fall asleep. Suddenly two phones scream. The one having the ring tone of ‘Gayatri Mantra’ has woken up the gods in the heaven and the another, “ my name is shiela” has woken shiela sleeping in the third compartment from where we are. As for your jangling nerves, they are further jangled by the incessant chatter into the wee hours. You can say good bye to sleep.
On return to india , I had managed my life beautifully without a mobile or a watch or a pen for almost six months till I started this business. My bad luck that Dr. cooper had a bigger competition in the field of sadism. They call him Apple.
It was on this iphone while I was returning from Thailand after a sun soaked, mobile less vacation that I received this mail.
My anonymous fan was reaching Manipal on Tuesday and would I be free to meet her for dinner. I was left chatting with her for the rest of my journey. I am Skipping the details of this chat, because I remember the advise of my young friend when I started first blogging.
Keep the posts short. KISS. ( Keep it short, stupid). People have very low span of concentration.
I am in a quandary.
I am not sure where to take her. Guzzlers inn or Blue water, if she drinks. Opium if she smokes hookah. Or just a plain old fashioned pizza at my place. It is difficult to position her. Maybe i will leave it to her.
One good thing about going on a vacation is that the staff doesn’t depend on you. They are running the store better than I was doing. So I wouldn’t feel guilty of ignoring my business.
Waiting now for the D Day and more weirdness.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

" Porn Nights"

A young reader complimented a recent article that I wrote. Pleased as punch I continued to read. He sheepishly added that he, however, read it because he had read Prom as porn in my article ‘Of Prom Nights and more’.

I wished that he could have been a little dishonest. I really am not against Porn. Much of my brothers from across the border come and read my blog only when they feel a whiff of porn. Sadly writing porn is not my forte. That kind of imagination really has eluded me. But he robbed me of my two minutes of happiness. “ Well I too was searching for my two minutes of happiness.” He added. I had no answer. He had a point. “ Each to his own poison.” My boss would always say.

If we could celebrate sex in the temples in Khajuraho and write reams about it, he could also celebrate sex the way he thought was right. After all we all live in a free world.

Any way sex for me , is more between the ears than in the groin. I told him so and requested him that next time better appreciate my posts for what they really mean and not what he perceives them to mean. But he has an amazing sense of humor. He asked me , tongue in cheek, if he knew anyone as slutty as him. His candor was totally disarming. He was young and hence not a hypocrite. I laughed loud.

Seriously I told him that enjoying porn doesn’t make him slutty. He asked back if I watched porn. I candidly told him that I did when I was young but now I feel it more like monkeys performing in a zoo. “ Horizontal jogging” I remarked, borrowing from that master piece, “ Yes Prime minister.” I passed the test. He too liked my humor.

We must have chatted for over an hour which was remarkable since I no longer chat . He asked me if we could be friends. I thought about it. Why not? I had not laughed so much for quite sometime. And any way it was only a virtual relationship.

Revels is the largest cultural and musical fest of South India. It is hosted annually in Manipal. He informed me that he was visiting Manipal too attend it and maybe we could hook up for a drink or dinner.

My fingers were tired of tapping the keyboard. I said let me think it over and wished him a good night.
He stopped me and said he had another confession to make.

Now what? My first thought was that he had broken up with his girl and wanted to discuss a broken relationship. Why else would anyone sit and chat with a middle aged man. But I was not going to play agony aunt. I braced for his confession.

“ What would you say if I told you that I am a girl?”

We are meeting next week. Now nothing she tells me is going to shock me. She could be a transvestite or a junkie or simply an old bored bag! There is just a tiny hope.
Maybe she is just a normal girl having fun being anonymous. whatever she was, she had tossed me like a dead rat the whole night and played like a wild cat.

Just as I was going to sleep, a thought struck me. Why is it always me?!!!!

Monday, February 7, 2011

When the bug bit my ass!

I am not a very tall man. I measure just 960.127mm from the sole of my leg to my butt.Some times I like to be reminded that I am an engineer.So I checked the length with a vernier caliper.
This length is very important.It is the metaphorical difference between my life in Miami and India. on any given weekend I would be resting either on my butt or my back depending on whether I was in the Pub or the beach. After coming to India, if my butt and my back were on the desktop, they would have been archived by now, so seldom are they used. I am most of the time on my two tired legs.
So why and how did the proverbial entrepreneurial bug bit me. honestly it didn’t. it was a Hobson’s choice. I had no other option. No one across the two continents thought I was fit enough to be hired. I lasted in my last job in USA for barely forty eight hours. I knew then, that my career is over. Now I have to look for something that I can enjoy.
But I can say that with confidence that being a entrepreneur has widened my horizons. Till now I thought that Sonia Gandhi was the best known Italian import to India. wrong. It is Pizza. She is not even second. That is pasta. I am glad. As long as both these are popular, I am in business.
Being your own boss has its own privileges. Like you could, if you wanted to, get drunk even on a hot sunny afternoon. But these priveleges are liked the air miles given by various airlines. They are hardly ever used. I stand there the whole day counting the pizzas that are being consumed. It is hard work. The pizzas cant be eaten that fast!
The worst thing is that everyone thinks that life is a Hawaiian Salad for me . one girl even commented, “ you are a lucky man. You don’t have to work!” really ! what was she thinking? I am Manmohan Singh?
I don’t think we have settled yet. Our deliveries are way behind our targets. In fact they are so bad that I think the local hospital delivers more babies than we deliver pizzas per day. I thought that we needed some aggressive marketing. So I decided to do it myself. The other day a doctor, a gynecologist came. I suggested that we also deliver. He stared at me and said disdainfully, “ very smart.”
What is it that makes a great entrepreneur. I don’t know really. And I don’t really care. I only know that as long as I am in this business, I can never sleep hungry. There is always some order messed up by one of our staff ready to be gorged.
Many youngsters come to me for advice. ME AND ADVICE! If I was that smart I would have got myself a job.
But this job has its perks. For instance, when you see a happy customer gushing that the food was awesome or overhear a staff telling his friends that he works for a great guy. Or when young Donald sends an sms that uncle your connizza is fabulous or Rehan comes and says that his dad is out of town and he told his mother that I was feeling low. So let us go to uncle’s place.
These are times when I feel a lump in my throat. Feels like it is worth all the trouble. I know i miss my writing.I am letting my readers down. But still it feels great.
My butt and back can get archived for all I care. My legs will surely not complain.