Me, My dog and a leisurly chat

I pet him, patronize him and ask him how does it feel to be a dog. He asks me how does it feel to be a patronizing pretentious jerk.

I ask him why his tail can never be straight. He asks me isn’t it boring to be straight.

I ask him why he licks himself so much. He tells me at least he licks his own balls.

I ask him why he barks so much. He asks me why you guys kill each other so much.

I ask him why does he salivates so much. He asks me why I sit in front of a colored glass box for hours.

I try to explain it to him that being a human comes with responsibility as we are the superior species. He asks if I have forgotten to take my medications today.

I try to explain that we work, have goals and earn paychecks so we can buy things. He asks me how does it feel to be a slave.

I tell him to behave like a dog as he is “just” a dog. He asks me what do I plan to do if he does not behave like a dog. Bomb him, declare him a member of axis of evil or put financial sanctions on him?

I again try to persuade him that I belong to a much more advanced species. He asks me then why is it that you pick up my poop.

I detect hostility and try a different approach. I tell him there is no reason we can’t get along. He tells me he understands that he is a dog and I am his master. But he knows his rights. He threatens me that he can sue me for mental harassment, inhuman behavior, wrongful confinement and possibly some other crap. And how would a member of superior species feel about that!

I realize that my good old friend remains no more. He has become a pain, a nuisance, a cunning beast and a scoundrel. He has just become a man.

An Indian (un)Fight

An Indian fight is a paradox, a melodramatic act of intense chest thumping and in the end an “unfight”. It could happen anytime and anywhere. Only God knows what or who started it because very soon even fighting parties do not remember.

It generally involves 2 people (related or unrelated) or parties standing at a safe distance and cursing each other. There are lots of hand wavings and head noddings. If the involved parties are “educated” the fight starts with “you bastard” and “bloody fool”. I have no idea why we love to use these two particular expressions. But I think it is a leftover from our colonial heritage. Soon though language takes a more colorful native turn with a Punjabi flavor. Teri bahan ki and teri maa di (these off course are referrals to vagina of abused’s sisters and mothers) start flying fast.. I am not sure if it is even abuse. It simply implies that a female family member has a vagina. The other abuses include incest in the family and the ultimate insult of calling a man a cunt in the native language.

In true Gandhian tradition, there is almost never any physical contact. The two parties continue to abuse and dare each other to cross some imaginary line. If that imaginary line was to be crossed, there are imaginary bad things that were going to happen. If one is not a “bastard” he should dare cross the line. Off course the “bastard” also wants other “bastard” to do the same. There is generally an expectant crowd that gathers looking for some “action”. Once a punch is thrown then some members of the crowd join in without even knowing who is fighting whom. This grand orgy of abuses, screams, curses and punches goes on for few minutes.

I had the great fortune of witnessing this event recently, off all the places at immigration clearance at Delhi airport. There was a  commotion and a loud “you bastard”. Apparently the other dude has “touched” the family. I have no idea how the “bastard” touched the whole family at once. May be he was a serial “toucher” or a very swift toucher. The toucher despite all his drawbacks was not a screamer. He was called “you bloody fool” as well. Then it took the predicted turn to “teri maa di”. The toucher was dared to touch the family again. The toucher did not fall for this. Eventually screamer and toucher took their positions back in the line and continues to share the common misery of being in an airport.


My Cousin-part 7

My Cousin, Private and moustached seducer (MS from now on) finally settled on a girl. A letter using my cousin’s ink and wisdom of MS was prepared. Private suggested writing letter in red ink and claiming that writer has written it with his own blood. MS advised them against it because he had already tried it. The girl fainted and then everybody knew about the letter.

The letter started with a “very new and original” opening which meant something like flower-body (Gulbadan) when translated.

The opening paragraph informed the girl why she is the lucky recipient of this letter. Apparently the letter writer finds her very pure and not a “loose character” at all. Though she is not particularly beautiful but she is not ugly as well. The writer has seen fairer girls but he is willing to overlook this deficiency because he thinks she is pure. Purity is very important to letter writer.

The next paragraph informs the girl a little bit about letter writer himself. He is tall, wheatish, has all his teeth and combs his hair to left. This was followed by conflicting and contradicting bits so my cousin could not be identified if the letter falls in wrong hands. He is tall but not very, could be fairer than wheatish and sometimes might comb the hair to right. He is a good boy, very good in studies and will definitely become “Collector, Doctor or Engineer”. These were spelled as “Klakter, Daktar or Enjuner”. I tried to correct them as even I knew couple of these spellings but they hushed me and told me not to bother grown ups when they were working.

They also decided to finish off a potential competing lover early. “And I am definitely not that Subhash who is not a good boy and says bad things about you. He is not pure and he wants to make you impure as well. If you become impure and a loose character who will marry you then? Not even a Sardar! Do you want to be with a Sardar or me?”

The ending was something like “forever yours” or “someone who can’t sleep at nights”. This was followed by a not so gentle reminder that the writer looks forward to a positive response. Otherwise he has other options. Off course there was never a name. That could get you in serious trouble.

My Cousin-search for “heroine” (part6)

My cousin would visit Private with inks and he will provide paper. He had an impressive collection of books about seducing girls. These books were printed on cheapest paper and did not bother with such trivial things as grammar or proofreading. They had inspiring stories from author’s own life about how he turned the most sought after girl in a complete love conquest with just few simple tricks. It provided readers with such cold hard facts as “every girl wants to be with a guy just like you but is too shy”. It cautioned readers not to treat women well at all or they will think too much of themselves and then conquest might become difficult. The personal hygiene was emphasized with advise such as using talcum powder liberally, not to have a runny nose or stuff leaking out of ears.

imageThe next section dealt with how to make first contact with the girl. The author advised bold steps such as running straight into the girl, knocking her down and then helping her get up. The other options included befriending her brother, stalking her so she knows that you are indeed in love with her or jump from behind a tree and present her with a rose. He also recommended making the girl feel bad by paying more attention to her friend because “that will lead to jealousy which will lead to love”. All these strategies had a sound basis as author himself had tried them.

After this there was a section about love letters. There were 20 sample letters. The letters had openings such as “queen of my dreams”,” my moonlight”,” my rose without thorns” or “my life’s freshener”. The author did not have much faith in abilities of his demographics. He advised just to copy it and not change too many things.

My cousin and Private had divided the girls in 4 categories:

1) Pure: Presumed untouched clean girls like a Yash Chopra movie and highly desirable.

2) “Loose Character”: In their opinion these girls did not have any character. Any simple gossip, a girl caught smiling at a boy or rejection of advances of a passionate lover was enough to lock a girl in this category. When they said the word it came out as “luzkrakter”

3) “She loves me but can’t have me”: These girls were already in love with them but they could never have these princes either due to being from a different caste or some other mismatch situation.

4) Dimag-Kharab (Completely Crazy): these were feisty girls who had beaten up the guys and were feared.

My cousin always focussed on “pure” type because the movie heroines were all pure. Private was completely dedicated to luzkrakters. He had a complete database of luzkrakters. Once a girl was labelled luzkrakter, Private will immediately enter the name  in a diary which he kept under lock. They had some kind of a deal where my cousin will not try his charms on luzkrakters and Private will not hit on Pure ones. It did not matter to them that these girls hardly knew them or cared what they thought about them. They did not bother with Dimag-Kharabs as being beaten by a girl was complete disaster and could result in ruining of your stud image.

If these two were not creepy enough, at times they were joined by a third dude who apparently was a master seducer. He had a reputation of being able to seduce any girl or women. The guy was a pretty disturbing sight. He was thin as a pencil, had even thinner moustache, had horrible teeth and drenched himself with cheap perfume. You could smell him before he really arrived. Even as a 10-year-old I had serious doubts about this guy’s claims of having multiple women “under my control”. But these two seemed to worship him. He was “very smart” because he had failed only once in 10th grade and now was failing in 11th grade. This was a step up for these two as they were still failing in 10th grade.

John Doe- in ER

I was brought to ER where I was taken over by a new set of hands. The team A that brought me presented my case to team B. My running around naked and trying to hump a bed of Petunias was mentioned in detail. I was poked and probed some more. They already had me on oxygen but now they put a mask on my face to give me even more oxygen. They put stickies on my chest and something in my privates. I can’t remember what else was placed on as everybody was trying to do something to me at the same time.

They had so many people in room that I started to believe I was the sickest patient in world at this time. They drew more blood but were giving me IimageV fluids to replace it. They took my urine sample and I was afraid they would ask for a stool sample as well. I must say they were thorough in trying to find diseases hidden in the remotest corner of body. They checked me for heart disease, kidney diseases, liver diseases, low blood counts, electrolytes, pneumonia and urinary infection. If these tests did not give them desired results, they were going to scan my head to look for stroke, bleed, cut off blood supply to brain and tumor. If that still did not work they were going to go all the way to MRI to find out “why I was running around naked”.

They wanted to know if I knew where I was. They wanted to know what the date/month and year was. They lifted the mask from my face and before I could answer they let the mask go. They wanted to know who the president was but before I could answer they let mask go again. They decided I was confused but possibly demented. They wanted to check my blood for alcohol and urine for drugs (this confused me a great deal. If someone wanted to use drugs why would they put it there). My blood pressure was low but not too low. My oxygen levels were suspicious. My temperature was neither too cold nor too hot but it was not a rectal temperature. So no one could be sure. I had a strong intuition about what was coming next!

After this they came with impressive equipment and informed me that I will have a chest x-ray to look for “stuff” and x-ray of abdomen to look for more stuff. If they could not find “stuff” they will put me in an even bigger machine to find out more stuff. They asked me if I understood and they lifted my mask but before I could say anything they let it snap back on. “We are sorry that you are confused”.

Finally doctor came in. “I am afraid that foreign body in your rectum will require surgical removal”. The nurse quickly whispered something in his ear. “I am sorry I didn’t realize that you are the one who was running naked and trying to hump Petunias”. I am relieved that at least I am doing better than guy with something stuck in his rectum.

Finally “my” doctor showed up. This guy had an expression on his face that either someone was going to die or already has died. I wonder if Hospitals have certain doctors just to give bad news.

“He is confused anyway. He won’t remember anything”. At this time I thought I should make myself heard. So I tried to reach for the mask. “He is trying to take off mask, restraint him quickly!” Before I could say anything they restrained me…by putting my hands in belt buckles. Now I am in a position where I can’t move, can’t breath and can’t speak because of the mask but thank god I was constantly peeing because I had the luxury of having a tube in my bladder. Not to mention they have managed to check temperature of my rectum which apparently will go a long way towards my complete healing.

John Doe-the might of American health care

My name is John Doe. Well, it is not my real name but that’s what my name is nowadays. But I am more than that. I am “room 512”, “elderly demented male”, “urinary retention”, “guaiac positive stool” and a FULL CODE. I am also day # 56, waiting for placement but not stable enough for D/C home. I am also a “Hospitalist patient” and a Cardiology, Oncology, Pulmonary, Nephrology, Palliative care, Physical therapy, Occupational care, Orthopedics, Psychiatrist and Infectious disease consult.

A few weeks ago, I was just Joe (“an elderly male living by himself”). As far as I can remember I was doing well and was in good health. One night there was a noise in my front yard and I came to check it out. I must say I was in my birthday suit. I tripped and fell over. The noise woke up my neighbor, who immediately called 911 for “ an elderly naked male making noise by falling down and possibly humping a bed of Petunias”.

Before you know I was surrounded by the brightest display of lights you can imagine. There were town police cars with blue lights, paramedics with red lights and fire fighters with even bigger red lights. We also had a local TV station with cameraman and anchorwoman to cover the breaking news of an elderly man falling down. Before I could utter a word, I was “secured”. I was trying to say something but with all the noise, lights and 1000 people asking questions at the same time, I am not sure if I got anything out. I still remember some of these questions:

Who are you?

Why are you here?

Why are you naked?

Are you a nudist?

Are you demented? (how is one supposed to answer this question!)

Are you protesting against Obamacare?

In the mean time a fresh-faced student nurse has poked my arm multiple times, looking for a vein, and declared that I am a “difficult stick”. While he was looking for a vein, rest of them were looking in my eyes, inside my mouth, listening to my heart and checking my pulse to make sure that I was alive (though they were asking me questions at the same time). Another heavyset student had both his hands on my chest, “ready to go” in case my heart stops. They had already taped my head to stretcher, fastened belts around my body and found out that my blood pressure was low but not too low. An explorer has discovered my rectum and a thermometer had been inserted. I tried to ask questions but they had decided I was “confused” and told me so politely. A kind nurse reassured me that it could be anything such as stroke, heart attack, low sugar, high sugar, infection, bleed in brain, infection in brain or possibly all these things together. Off course you can never rule out pneumonia, urinary tract infection, ruptured gut, TIA or something we don’t know all together. I could also have overdosed as “elderly often do”.

During this time radios were crackling. It appeared everyone was talking to someone on a radio. My neighbor came, held my hand and comforted me. He said” I will never judge you. It’s your choice if you want to run naked at night or want to hump Petunias”. The paramedics were calling various ER’s about “Naked John Doe found down”. The ER’s were asking questions like:

Is Naked Doe just demented or Psychotic as well?

Is he violent?

Did he say why he was trying to hump Petunias!

Does he just hump Petunias or all kind of vegetations?

to be continued…


Sensibilities-times we live in!

Every single day I find myself a victim of multiple assaults on my sensibilities. There are movies, news, cartoons and comedies that are offensive. In these times our religion, god and country are all under attack all the time. A lot of these things are simply being created to cause hurt and assault our sensibilities.

The attacks are relentless. If you turn your computer on, go to Internet, go to you tube, find a website called AIB, find the video and assault is sitting right there. How do you escape such spontaneous attacks! You are looking at tweets and someone posted an unflattering picture of your god. What can you do? The assault has happened. You went to a movie and they made fun of your god. Everyone is laughing but you are offended. What can you do? The assault has happened. I tell you there is not a single thing you can do. I am sure you feel as helpless as me.

There are things we can do to protect ourselves. When our car stops at red light and those annoying dirty begging children come and knock on our windows, we are ready. We have  windows that we can close. When we read about a minor girl who was raped in newspaper, we are smart enough to jump to next page because we were ready. But how do we avoid those spontaneous assaults. Why would they make fun of a Politician or a religious head and hurt their follower’s feelings. I understand it is democracy but that does not mean you can assault someone’s sensibilities.

The concept of freedom of expression is not needed in well controlled societies. We should have a list which clearly labels clear list of things which are offensive. The list should be maintained regularly and have input from religious heads and government officials. Once we have all agreed on such a list, we should be able to use it for purpose of humor and such. If someone still finds a joke offensive, we should have the grace to take it off from the list.

Should we have Humor at the cost of offending someone’s sensibilities? I am sure you will agree with me that answer is a resounding NO. We can all live without humor but if our sensibilities are offended the life become a worthless rot.