The OMR Highway Code

Left lane: car parking, vehicles at above 100 kmph, overtaking traffic;

Middle lane: general traffic (including buses and their trailers). You can move to the left lane when overtaking but try not to confuse people with indicators. Once you’re done overtaking, do not linger too much on the left lane. You don’t want to disturb the drivers sleeping in the parked cars there. Immediately switch back to the middle lane cutting the vehicle you were overtaking and slow down a bit before speeding again. Everyone on this lane has to overtake everyone else. Don’t ask how. It’s one of those life-is-fast-paced type philosophy. Just do it unless you want to get run over, or move to the right lane;

Right lane: Bicycles, autos not exceeding 30 kmph (and whose wheels have the miraculous ability to zigzag in perfect randomness), two wheeler parking (for those who want to drop off their pillion rider(s) on the divider and have a little chat before parting), cars/cabs that immediately have to take a left turn, two wheelers incapable of going beyond 40 (read Scooty), general vehicles figuring out where they want to go;

Did I forget trucks? Oh, trucks just emerge out of nowhere and disappear into nowhere. Just try not to be in their way when they are there.

Pedestrians: you can walk on the left lane or the right. The middle one might be a little too crowded to enjoy your morning walk.The overhead bridges are preserved as a national monument. Do not damage them. When you want to cross, just raise your hand and look away. This will immediately bring the entire highway traffic to a stand still for you. (The looking away is to protect yourself from the angry stares but that’s ok. Anger management is an art, and it’s not your fault that these people aren’t capable of handling it). Walk slowly, and if you own a mobile phone, here’s when you should ‘walk and talk’. Doctors and the Media say it’s good for your health;

After sunset: On the highway, never mind there aren’t any streetlights, turn your head lights off. It saves electricity. Just honk when you want to overtake. The sound is particularly soothing in the night. Once you turn into the city, onto the two-way roads, turn on your highlights to high beam. This is required to show the vehicles coming towards you who’s boss! Your vehicle has a dim/dip option only for your kid to play with the switch when he’s bored.

Rabbit Little is the first soft toy I ever owned. Got him a couple of weeks back. That’s right, as surprising as it may sound, I’ve never owned a soft toy before in all these years. The fact that my lunch mates at work thought I’d like a soft toy for my birthday almost made me laugh, but then, it made me happy too – I didn’t want to go down in history as The Girl Who Never Owned a Soft Toy. Now, it’s not really because my parents couldn’t afford me a soft toy that I never owned one – that sort of  Oliver Twist, David Copperfield stuff never actually happened. It’s just that I’ve never really been interested in them. Not that I grew up playing with cars, bikes or rambo toys either. I did have my share of barbies, kitchen sets, doll houses and other girlie toys but furry stuffed animals were never part of my play room. Even my parents and friends had never thought of getting me a soft toy in all the several birthdays that passed by. I don’t know why but I never complained. If you’re wondering what happened to the barbies, I never knew.  They probably went to live in the farm after their little arms got broken in little car accidents – the cars belonged to bro. 

It’s not that I don’t like animals in general. We did have two cats … named Puss. Yeah, both cats were named Puss. First one came and we named her Puss and later another one came, and since we couldn’t find a better name, we named him Puss as well. They were around the same time and they looked a lot alike too – white with black spots. Wouldn’t that be confusing, you might ask but no, somehow whenever anyone at home called out “Puss”, the right one always came. I never knew how but it was always the right one. If you’re wondering what happened to the cats, well, Puss ran away (she was female) and Puss died (he was male). Well, both were kittens then. So, don’t you get any crazy ideas!

I liked dogs too but then mom apparently went through some sort of heartbreak during her childhood when their family dog died and to spare herself and her kids another heartbreak, she decided we should never get a dog. There was also the fact that, with my parents working and we kids in school, no one would be at home during the day to feed the canine..but then, that fact never bothered me much anytime I cried to my parents for a dog. I probably never even knew then that dogs have to eat too. I probably figured they’d grow up just like that. On the matter of pets, I wouldn’t mind a pet bear either (as long as he is clean, keeps his nails (or claws, are they?) trimmed and doesn’t growl too much). But, stuffed animals were never in my line of liking.

Anyways, coming back to  Rabbit Little, he’s a cute little green and white bunny..with cute long ears. After my colleagues at work threatened that the rabbit may not be there the next day if I left him on my office desk, I brought him home and took him out of the box…after a week. He did make the house appear cheerful and all that, but after a couple days, I started feeling he was taking up too much space in the room. He was getting in the way all the time. When I want to make my bed, he’s there lying somewhere under the sheets. When I want to clean the room, he’s there on the floor busy picking up dust. When I want to sit, he’s there on the chair. And, when I want to untangle my laptop’s cable from the other cables, he’s lying there tangled in the mess. I was getting a little tired of throwing him around each time. And it made me feel bad too – he was a gift, after all. So, I came up with this ingenious idea of placing him at some place, where he wouldn’t get in my way and yet, be accessible to pinch-nose when I’m happy and punch-nose when I’m frustrated. I chose a nail on the wall, removed the basket of flowers that were hanging on it, and placed the bunny there. Because, I couldn’t find the right place to tie the string to keep him upright, I just tied it around his neck. Now my parents are worried. They’re wondering why I have a rabbit committing suicide in my room.  Bro suggested, rather helpfully, that I have always been a little weird and that I’ll  be fine :-/ I keep giving people such unintended impressions, for no fault of mine.

If you’re wondering how Rabbit Little is doing now, he’s perfectly fine. Thank you for asking. Still hanging but not quite dead yet.

…without the cherries*.

But who cares where the cherries went, I got an award! This happens to be the first award that this blog has ever gotten in it’s entire blog history of 43 posts and thanks Abirami for sending it!

However, just like everything else in this world, this award too comes with a tag. (price tag? that would have been easy). While I normally love doing tags (they being an easy excuse to update your blog), this one turned out to be a tad difficult. I’ll tell you why soon. Here’s what I have to do as part of the tag.

1. Thank the person who sent it to me. Unless you skipped reading the previous paragraphs and came directly to this one (now, this is something you shouldn’t do, you see. You ought to have skipped the entire blog and gone to the next one), you would have noticed that I already thanked Abirami. But here we go again, for the record, thank you so much Abirami…for taking the time in between being the perfect wife (yeah yeah, wordpress can let you have your blogname as bride forever but that doesn’t mean you are a still a bride :P) and an awesome blogger (I may have deserted my blog but I still diligently read yours) to tag me.

2. Put up a picture I love. Now, this one’s easy. I already knew which one I’m gonna put up even before I got tagged (come on, am I not allowed a little exaggeration?). I just needed an excuse to put it up somewhere and I just got one.


(No, I did not take it but I’ll make this text so small that you won’t read it and will just assume that I’m the photographer who took this)

3. I’ve to write three things that I love about myself. Now, this, this is the hard, harder and hardest part of the tag. Hard because, for an eternally-pessimistic Marvin type person that I am, it’s not very easy to convince myself that there’s anything at all about me that I do love. Harder because it involves a lot of thinking. It’s not really the thinking that is hard. I can think rather easily. There’s always a hundred things I’m thinking about..at any point in time but the difficult part is picking out the (barely even) sane thoughts from the whole mess, I mean, mass of thoughts. Hardest because it is a lot of work and my lazy bones are already resisting hard! After thinking and thinking a lot about what I might possibly like about me, I realized I have nothing. But because I cannot accept the award without doing the tag (because of moral and ethical reasons), I’m gonna try a different approach to it. Instead of writing 3 things I love about myself, I gonna write just any 3 things about me, and try to convince you that I  actually love those about me. How’s that for an ingenious approach, huh?! (Ok, don’t answer that).

So, here we go…the three things I love about myself:

- I can advise really well. And, not just any advice, but very pragmatic sounding, thoroughly useless ones. The point is, however useless it might be, it helps people up on their feet. A lot of my friends have told me that. I’m not sure if my advice ever helps them sort their problems out but it definitely makes them feel better for the moment, and I think that’s what matters. People always have what it takes to get themselves through their troubles. What they need is some hope when they are down and I think I kind of help them there.

- I can remain blissfully ignorant of current affairs. That’s something I love about myself, but strangely people around me aren’t so impressed with that. Even now I’ve an Wikipedia page open, on the last day of IPL3,  searching for who owns CSK. I’ve happily gone through three seasons of the IPL without knowing that and it didn’t even bother me, You might wonder why Wikipedia when I could have easily just asked dad (who’s sitting here as well, watching the match, and secretly hoping CSK would lose so he can later list down the hundred reasons why he thinks they lost)? He would have told me right away who owns CSK but I somehow was not in the mood to listen to the tirade that would inevitably follow on how important it is to read the newspaper, and how pathetic I am when it comes to knowing what’s happening around me. Much worse, that would have given him a perfect excuse to switch to Sun News and I’d be forced to leave the room carrying my laptop and the network cable trailing behind it.  I don’t get it. I’m not a person who’s in any way averse to reading. Wouldn’t I have read the newspaper if it was even remotely as interesting as a Ken Follet book? It’s not my fault that real life is so boring, is it? (While on that topic, something tells me, in the years to come, my dad may not be the only person to nag me about reading the newspaper. Sigh. Big Sigh!)

- I can perfectly relax on Sunday evenings irrespective of what lies await the next day. Like now. With all that work pending that I should have completed not yesterday but two weeks back, I’m comfortably sitting back with an empty dinner plate next to me and writing stuff on my long stranded blog, only vaguely aware of the VPN connection dropping in the background and too lazy to hunt for that SecurID thing to connect back..and just a tiny bit sleepy.

Phew! I’m done. There’s a little part of passing on the tag and award, which I skipped. After all, what’s a job well done, if you didn’t skip a little part it, huh?

Btw, CSK won. The match..and with that, the IPL3 too. Yay! Not that I care all so much for Chennai or for Cricket, or for the Super King Dhoni  (I wonder why people call him that. He did have a hair style once that vaguely resembled a lion but the similarity ended there) or even for the gaudy yellow t-shirts they wear..but somehow I can’t help but feel jubilant seeing them win. After all, Chennai has for the past 3 months so benevolently provided me a place to stay (at 9000 bucks per month), food to survive (at 50 bucks per meal) and a good amount of sunshine (way more than what I ever asked for). How can I not cheer when they win?

https://sites.google.com/site/roopa47/home/music/MichaelJackson-HealTheWorld.mp3?attredirects=0&d=1

..And the dream we were
conceived in
will reveal a joyful face.
And the world we
once believed in
will shine again in grace.

It’s so hard to believe the guy who created this beautiful song is no more. I’m not quite the kind of person to mourn for dead pop stars but this song comes very close to moving me to tears.

For many years in school, I’d thought this was another prayer song. That was when any song sung in the school assembly, whether or not it had a ‘I love you Jesus’ in it, was a prayer song to me. I loved the song then, and loved it all the more when I knew it came from the Micheal Jackson (or was it the other way round, I loved MJ for this song?). The song that featured in the first mixed tape that I made (which for some reason I hold close to my heart), the first song that I remember searching in google for, the song that plays in every playlist of mine and one that gets copied to every back up CD that I create. A song that’s seen my every mood; to me, it has always meant more than just another anti-war song.

While the world remembers Micheal Jackson as the Thriller, Bad and Dangerous guy, I’ve always known and loved him for ‘heal the world’; and now, miss him for it. May he rest in peace. For you and for me.

You can see the music video here. (youtube refuses to let me embed that one)

(P.S: If you’re wondering why this post comes about a week late when the rest of the world is done mourning, well, readers of this blog will know, be it raising a toast or paying tribute, it has always my blog policy  to rise to the occasion a tad late. That or I’m just very very lazy!)

(P.P.S: If you’re wondering why the above text is so tiny to read, well, fine print is generally not meant to be read and if you did read it, you’re probably  a geek and you’re probably wearing big glasses anyway)

by Abirami.

Now, the unbelieving, skeptical cynic that you are, I know you’ll go to her blog to check if she really did tag me and  on seeing her blog protected, you will find it hard to believe that I was indeed tagged. Well, what can I say, you’ll just have to try and believe me. (Abirami, see, this is one of the million reasons why you should have your blog public).

1. If your lover betrayed you, what will your reaction be?
Throw a tantrum big enough to make him wish he was never born; failing which, just try to pretend he was never born and move on!

2. If you can have a dream come true, what would it be?
I can’t decide which one I want to come true. Can I inky pinky ponky?

3. Whose butt would you like to kick?
This guy in office who keeps tapping on my desk for no reason, every time he passes my cubicle.  I’d like to kick his butt and break his fingers too :-/ It’s all the more irritating when I’m concentrating on work, you know. Like now.

4. What would you do with a billion dollars?
First things first. Convert it to Rupees and then, hire someone to count it for me.

5. Will you fall in love with your best friend?
If I happen to fall in love with him, he being my best friend would be an icing on the cake.  (Before you start wondering, no, it was just a theoretical answer)

6. Which is more blessed, loving someone or being loved by someone?
Depends on who of the two someones is more good-looking.

7. How long do you intend to wait for someone you really love?
Forever. But while I wait, just make sure I don’t get bored, ok?!

8. If the person you secretly like is already attached, what would you do?
Secretly wish he’d get himself cloned soon.

9. If you like to act with someone, who will it be? your gf/bf or an actress/actor?
Actor. Any single actor. Who would later become my bf and then husband, and would then leave me a large alimony amount when we get divorced.  (Well, since Qn  4 was hypothetical,  I’m just making my own plans for the billion dollars)

10. What takes you down the fastest?
Being snubbed by someone I care about. But then, I get myself up pretty soon too. After a lot of cribbing and whining, of course.

11. How do you see yourself at this time ten years down the line?
Well, definitely not sitting in office at 7PM, answering questions about my love-life.

12. What’s your fear?
Ok, here comes the big list (may be, I should categorize them, put them in alphabetical order and number them)
- Accidents. Particularly that, someone I know (and needless to say, care about) would be involved in one. The very thought freaks me out.
- Flying cockroaches (Seriously, why do these creepy creatures have to have wings?)
- Spiders (three or more legged)
- Being home alone at night (Strangely, being out alone in the dark doesn’t scare me so much)
- Lift doors. Well, lifts in general.
- *Kinda embarrassed* Electricity. (I have this strange premonition that I’m gonna die of an electric shock. The only thing that keeps me going is knowing that my premonitions never come true)

13. What kind of person do you think the person who tagged you is?
Awesome writer ( if only you could read her blog). And, I wish I’d gotten to know her better in person  when I had my chance.

14. Would you rather be single and rich or married but poor?
Single with a rich boyfriend. (It’s nice to be pampered…without the hassles that marriage would bring, no?)

15. What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
Try to pick my thoughts from where I left them the previous night…

16. Would you give all in a relationship?
Mm..can I answer this later? Later as in a few decades later?

17. If you fall in love with two people simultaneously, who would you pick?
I’ll have to pick? Can’t I have them both? Why? Ok, the one who can make me laugh, even when I’m in a not-so-laughing mood.

18. Would you forgive and forget, no matter how horrible a thing someone has done?
Forgive, yes. Quite easily. Forget, No. Though, I sometimes wish it was the other way round.

19.Do you prefer being single or having a relationship?
Single.  And in a place where it’s OK to be single.

20. List 6 people to tag
One more time I tag my friends, I’m sure atleast one of them will find 20 creative ways to kill me. So, if you have a blog and if you think the tag is cool, and if you’re NOT my friend, consider yourself tagged.  And if you will do it, well, so sweet of you!

“I had resolved to be less offended by human nature, but I think I blew it already”

To the one person it may (actually, does) concern:

It’s OK not to comment when you don’t have anything to say.

If you think I’m obliged to answer your so called “queries”, get over it. I’m not.

The flashing ‘disclaimer’ in the side bar is there for a reason. Seriously, read it sometime.

Your comments have been deleted for the same reasons that you were “blocked” some months back.

Comment moderation is enabled. (Now, that’s a line I never thought I would say in my blog)

To all others:

Well..uh..Hi. Sorry to have made you read through that.

(Warning: This is one incoherent post you’d rather not read. Trust me)

Everyone gets exactly one chance in life to be and act totally insane. I used up mine this February.

*****

A phone conversation sometime in January:

Me: (Looking at the calendar): Hey, know what? This February is a full four week month.

Friend: Err..what?

Me: You know, it’s got four full weeks, each starting on a Sunday and ending on a Saturday. Covers four columns in the calendar completely. Know what I mean?

Friend: Yeah, I get it (actually wanting to say, “yeah, so what?!”..or may be, that’s what he said)

Anyway, I don’t remember what was said before that and what after that, but it’s strange how the little things you say offhandedly in a conversation, comes back to haunt you much later.  Little had I realized then that the four full weeks I’d talked about so carelessly would turn out to be four full weeks of disappointment, confusion, hurt, pain, happiness (yeah, I was happy too, for reasons I can’t quite comprehend now)  and many many what-is-happening-to-me and why-is-this-happening-to-me moments.   It was a month where I’ve said and done, and believed things that were totally ‘NOT ME’! While the trials and tribulations I’ve been through in the past have made me realize my strength, this one scared me. I was lost. I desperately tried to find myself only to move farther away…

As I sit here on the last day of the month, introspecting and trying to figure out what went wrong, I can’t think of anything. All I know is that it has been an insane month for me and I’d like to be excused from it..forever. Even on Judgment Day. Are you listening, God? No questions about Feb ’09, ok?

*****

I was trying to book a train ticket yesterday and this is what irctc had to say:

feb as irctc sees it

(Click to enlarge)

This is the first time irctc had ever made me smile. In some sense, it feels good to know that February has only 28 days…and that it’ll be over soon.

I have no clue how March is going to be, or for that matter, any of the coming months. It’s scary. It could be as bad as Feb or even worse. But there’s one thing I know for sure it’s NOT going to be: Crazy!

Oh btw, I’m not the only one who thinks February is the worst month of the year.  This person does too..for different reasons. From the article:

Speaking of holidays, February ‘holidays’ are nothing more than a pathetic excuse to sit around and think about how painful February really is.

The few and far between great parts of February are only attainable through either great expense or extreme luck, and always carry a serious risk of public humiliation.

How very true!

P.S. This isn’t the kind of post I’d normally put up in my blog, but what the heck, I’ve still got a few hours to go before Feb ends and I can still claim the right to be insane until it’s over.

P.P.S. There’s a good chance this post would be removed in a few days.  Naturally, ‘cos it’s not something I’d like to revisit any day. So don’t look for it if it suddenly disappears. (That’s for those of you who actually came this far in reading it, in spite of the warning)

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