Saturday, 11 October 2014

-OH Crap

Statutory Warning: Alcohol consumption is injurious to your health and destructive to your life.
And so is consuming that greased Puri at the mess. Except when was the last time you felt like dancing after having 5 of them? 

So, my liver recently lost its virginity to a Smirnoff shot. And my brain lost its sanity to the next one. Then my bladder lost its...well I drank is what I mean to say. And drinking for the first time feels like preparing for an exam with just a couple of hours remaining; because you're shocked out of your wits, grinning and giggling at the meaninglessness of the whole thing, wondering if anything good is ever going to come out of it, and deeply regretting not having done it before.

Also, have you heard of this confidential organ called the brain-to-mouth-filter which prevents you from pulling off stunts like-
(a) explaining to an acquaintance how his pronunciation of the word 'ambassador' as amba-sadder  automatically gives you a lifelong lasting license to judge him
(b) conveying to a team member that his only contribution to the project has been making lame jokes in the meetings
(c) confessing to your friend that the excessive bass in his voice could be the reason for your regular headaches?

Well, alcohol takes good care that the filter is tweaked right off its position causing a burning sensation in the esophagus, filling you up with all the guts and balls in the world, until stability is regained and stupidity realized. Because, if there is one thing that's perfectly soluble in alcohol besides Sprite and Coke, it's inhibitions.

So it's preferable for you to stay away from crowds, especially when you've got nothing nice to say. Which is when your introversion comes to good use because you're already like, Nah, I'm not going there, that's too much society at one place.

Your perspective of the world begins to gradually change, with a slight blur obviously; and your appreciative and argumentative capabilities take an upward gradient, with a slight slur obviously.
And you ever so slowly time-travel back to the pre-independence era, as the spirits stir up some old memories and English words forcefully fuse themselves into your speech. And to prove my point, here lies an excerpt from a vodka driven conversation I, well let's say, overheard-

At S.T.P.
Guy1:  Samosa mast hai.
Guy2:  Haan achha hai.

After 1st Shot
Guy1:  Samosa sahi hai dude! Ekdum epic!
Guy2:  Haan man, true.

After 2nd 
Guy1:  No no I'm still not drunk. Normal only. But yaaar! This is the best ever Samosa I ever had in my freaking life ever man!
Guy2:  Yeah it's good, I get it.

3rd Shot
Guy1:  I think ab thodi chadh rahi hai bey. Why are they not changing the channel man?! Oh that's a signboard. Shit! Also this Samosa is exquisite man! Like. This. Is. The. Shizz! Like if I had my whole life in one hand and this Samosa in another, I..
Guy2:  Now you're embarrassing yourself.

Guy1:  Dude dude dude.
Guy2:  What?
Guy1:  You ever thought about why all expletives are like all about sex? Never thought? Wait I'll tell you. It's because sex means kids, and kids means responsibility, and everybody hates responsibility.
Guy2:  Good to know. Thanks.
Guy1:  Hehe LOL. And bro, one more thing.
Guy2:  What?
Guy1:  The Samosa here izz da-
Guy2:  *dunks the glass down his throat*  

And this is why petty units like pint and quarter (quarter being 180 ml, and not 250 ml, because that's the exact amount of alcohol you need to ingest before you stop caring about the metric system) can't really estimate how drunk you're, but {No. of English words used/Sentence} certainly can.

So if your friend begins from- "BC mera anda bhurji kab ayega?" and later ends up at- "I'd relish this dish more if my scrambled eggs were saut├ęd with some finely chopped spring onions", it's time you put a full stop to your liver-banging session, eat some Mentos and go home.

That said, after a threshold limit, drinking turns into a truly meta experience: your each and every neuron acting the exact same way like you, procrastinating and postponing on signalling and stuff; just lazying around drowsily, too relaxed to trigger reflexes and responses; and you desperately trying to think sense with these sluggish unicellular losers; almost realizing why the world hated you all your life.

And I say this from my first-hand experience.
At the campus main-gate security room. On 22nd September.
A breathalyzer in my mouth. Two equally dazed friends by my side.
All singularly staring into an ethanol induced oblivion. Getting photographed by a guard.

But obviously the whole scenario wasn't sinking in, escapism being a salient feature of intoxication, which leaves you floating comfortably above reality; and this is precisely why these things are fatal: drinks, marijuana, LSD, crystal meth, cocaine, college orientations.

Now a video footage of the scene would reveal how perfectly sober we three were on the outside, only a video footage couldn't show you the frigging fragrance. And considering how efficiently brown liquors can transform you into alcohol scented agarbattis, it wasn't surprising that all the faked sobriety and smoothness of Brandy couldn't get us through the gate.

So I recounted all the breathalyzer cheats I had heard since my first year (like- "don't exhale, inhale"; "slow down your respiration"; "make the right sounds"; "hold it with your mouth and let your nose do the breathing"; "oh my god baby, yes!"; etc) and tried out my luck thrice; miserably failing, annoying the guards and the already caught friends around, and finally realized that I had totally blown it. Quite literally.

Next up was the toughest part: writing an apology letter; when we three looked at each other in utter desperation until one finally got down to writing; whose work was blatantly plagiarized immediately, in the weirdest handwriting possible, and then it began to dawn. We were on the path to screwdom.

The next day was filled with threats of the infamous Disciplinary Committee meeting, which is basically a semi-circular arrangement of pissed-off faculty members who gang up on you from all sides with self-righteousness until you start suffocating with guilt; fondly known as DisCo; which seems fitting because-
(a) Alcohol is one of the prime reasons why you're here dancing around aimlessly.
(b) You've managed to get in, so you've got to face the music whether you like it or not.
(c) You've never met most of the people around before but that's no reason for them to not judge you.

So, no wonder we tried talking our way out of the DisCo meeting with the Hostel Warden and the Chief Warden. And consequentially, I had to come out clean and confess all my sins to Father. In a phone conversation that started with-

Me:  Hello Dad. So me and my friends went outside for dinner and we had a little party sort of.
Dad: Hmm.

And I bet my brandy on that hmm that he knew it already. And here's a heads up to all the dads reading this post, if there's any, by a one-in-a-billion chance: if your son/daughter ever calls you specifically to your cellphone anytime between 8 am to 1 am and begins the conversation in a solemn tone with anything similar to-"Dad, me and my friends went outside yesterday and had a party..." hold your breath; because the climax of this story is going to suck worse than Rockstar's.

Amazingly and fortunately, he was awesomely cool about it. Unlike the Chief of course.  

The Chief was mostly concerned with the low price of alcohol in Goa, which he attributed to "spiking the liquor with drugs" to adulterate it and make it addictive. Which is fundamentally against the core principles of addiction and adulteration. Firstly, because alcohol doesn't need an external agent to make it addictive. And secondly, because when the rates are already so rock-bottom level low, the only drug a seller could afford to adulterate alcohol with is Disprin.

But as much as I wanted to say, "Ab 17 rupey mein bachhe ki jaan loge kya?" all I could manage to mumble in the end was my pledge to- "never drink alcohol again in my whole entire life!" which was sworn with as much sincerity and honesty as the good old- "All Indians are my brothers and sisters."

Then passed a week. And we were called for DisCo anyway.

There were five of us standing outside the conference room. Three ourselves. Another with a seriously bad case of weed. And another guy caught due to just "having a Breezer", which was unfortunate, because it's kind of like being put on a trial along with bank robbers when all you have done is steal a cat from a lonely old woman. So we called bullshit on that. Then they called me inside.

Lasting for roughly 3 minutes each, it was a much better experience than we had imagined. Part of the deal being, calling a parent. Not on phone, but to campus.

And thus ended my bittersweet relationship with alcohol. Turning me to teetotalism temporarily.

So kids, shortly put, the moral of the story is:
(a) If you have any rebellious ideas about indulging in alcohol and/or drugs, please postpone them until after your graduation. It's getting pretty inconvenient in here.
(b) Letter writing is a very important skill. All the more when you're drunk. So practise it. And have some synonyms to "sorry" and "regret" always in handy, just in case.

And now winding it up; with warm regards.

Yours soberly. 

Friday, 11 July 2014

Driving? Me? Crazy.

Only 3 kinds of people in this world truly value time- 
(a) Runner-up athletes. (Refer Bhaag Milkha Bhaag to get a complete picture)
(b) Youtube users without the Skip Ad button. ( THE WHOLE 20 SECOND AD?!! BLOODY #@$%# )
(c) Drivers stuck at a red signal. Or a level crossing. Or traffic jam. Intersections. Speed breakers. Road, etc.    

And talking of  #@$%#, I joined a driving school this summer, where my car-driving instructor was, well let's call him- Mr. K.,
(a) for privacy, security and legal reasons,
(b) because it sounds cooler than his real name,
(c) his real name actually starts with a 'K';
and Mr. K. started the first day with a question way too personal.

Mr. K. : Do you know the ABC of driving?
Me      : Hahaha! Nope. I don't know jack about driving. Except if you count riding tricycle when I was 3 as driving. Also, I haven't ever driven a bike, a scooter or a scooty. Hell, I don't even know cycling. In other words, all my ideas and opinions about vehicles and driving are solely based Cybertron
Mr. K. : No, no. I only meant Accelerator, Brake and Clutch. And you said you don't even know WHAT?! 

And thus began this 18 day adventure, that taught me that a group of potholes is called a road.

The first days were very difficult, obviously, but Mr. K. being a very courteous man, always managed to withhold his anger within himself, turning red with rage while staying polite, whenever I failed at changing gears and made inappropriate turns. But he had figured out a clever way for directing his anger towards me.  

Me      : (after making a sharp turn in the 4th gear) I swear, that felt like the 2nd gear! Shit. 
Mr. K. :Yeah, you had almost rammed us into the tree, but don't worry. These things always happen when you're in the learning stage; like, when I was learning to drive my uncle's truck and did such ridiculous mistakes, my uncle who sat beside me used to shout, "Stop driving like a <insert a filthy part of a suitable reproductive organ>" and I took more care next time. And then when I made another such negligent error, he used to say, "I bet my <insert another part of the chosen organ> can drive better than this!" and I'd become more alert. But when I dared to make the same blunder again, he used to scream-
Me       : Alright! I get it! You drove like a <insert the whole organ>

Needless to say, I was heartbroken and crestfallen after the first week; with me being as good at driving as an alcoholic at tight-rope walking. And I tried to extract some feeling of sympathy from my parents. But when they saw me looking so glum, for having failed to learn at the school, while pissing off the instructor, making a complete waste of my time and their money; all they could feel was a terrible deja vu. 

Me  : I don't know why, but that gear changing thing is taking too long to learn.
Dad : Well, obviously. The only thing you've ever changed in your life is a TV channel. And it takes much time to master for everyone. So don't think you're special or something. 

I made another attempt. 

Me   : I don't know why mom, but the gear shifting thing is too confusing.
Mom: And I don't know what you're so confused about! It's really simple. You first put the car in the 1st gear, then as the speed increases you pull the gear down to 2nd, then go up and right and up and 3rd, then straight down to 4th, then 5th and then comes Reverse, which you pull to go in...well... reverse! Got it?
Me   : Holy freaking eureka! Finally it all makes sense!  

And that's why you never take driving advice from women. 

My usual driving stretch was a 10 km ride by the countryside, which may sound rustically romantic but was actually much trouble, because of the three prime obstacles a car driver has to face when driving by/through a village :-

(a) Children : When I say children, I mean-
The 1 to 6 year olds, who playfully run across the road, hither and tither, while their mothers gleefully stand at a corner priding themselves up at the agility and fitness of their kids.
The 7 to 14 year olds who have a tendency to gather around cars whether it's moving or stationery and give deep killer stares through the windows, making you feel ashamed and guilty for no reason.
The 15 to 19 year olds who have now grown up enough to have a love story each, which they duly inscribe on the car in the least time possible, in the form of something like, "Munna <3 Neelu", leaving permanent scratches. Because what good is your love if you can't engrave it somewhere for coming generations to see?

(b) Buffaloes : All types of cattle are dangerous, no doubt, but the ones that are the most difficult to deal with are Buffaloes. Because-
-> Buffaloes just don't give a shit, the idiomatic one I mean. Because they might as well pave the whole road with the literal one standing right in front of your car, while not giving an ounce of the idiomatic one.
-> Buffaloes are stoned as shit, like, all the time. Munching on grass and weed, they blankly stare into oblivion and contemplate on the origin of the universe and complexities of life. And your valueless time, worthless car and transient existence don't matter to them in the bigger picture.

(c) Old men : As in the case of buffaloes, slow reflexes and high response time, are the prime culprits here too, making it highly difficult to abstain from hitting them; except when you hit an aged buffalo, the younger buffaloes won't surround your car and frantically growl at you from all sides, demanding money. Because unlike humans, whose noses are always busy poking into others' affairs, buffaloes just don't give a...

Well, it surely took some time, but I drive somewhat well now (under the guidance of dad in the front seat who tells me when to change the gear and mom in the backseat who tells me to when to slow down from the super-speedy 40km/h to the safely-steady 20km/h) and will soon be able to perform professional manoeuvres, like-
-> Changing Raja Hindustani tracks on the tape while trying not to run over anyone.
-> Partially opening the door to spit gutkha while trying not to crack my head against the incoming traffic.  

But the most important lesson I learned in these 18 days was- when on road, there's no point of acting all alpha. Because contrary to popular opinion, overtaking never implies taking over. 

So please, stop being a hurrying-honking pseudo-punctual prick and drive safely. And when in doubt, always follow the age-old adage that the truck drivers have instilled deep into our minds, which without any specific target or context, goes as follows-

Buri nazar wale tera muh kala*

*No racism intended.**

**Conditions applied.  

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Ta-ta Time

It's been an eventful semester, this one, with most of the events revolving around the exploits of one tyrannical ruler who dominated and displeased all whom he could, by all his means. It's good the rascal finally died in the season's second episode. What?

So yes, under intense peer pressure and societal persuasion, I've finally started watching Game of Thrones (stop humming the theme music. NOW.) and by "started watching" I mean, I now don't directly skip to the good parts and watch the whole goddamn episode. (Which again is a very difficult task, especially when you have an attention span of a retarded monkey on LSD, and you've to wade your way through a hormonal cocktail with varying concentrations of adrenaline and testosterone depending on whether the characters are banging each other or banging each other, to understand the intricate plot.)

In other words, the spoilers on FB/DC/Twitter/Quora/any-damned-thing-that-can-show-you-some-text have now begun to thoroughly piss me off, and I've already plotted to strategically and cold-bloodedly murder all the people involved with my pet dragon.

On an unrelated note, saying something like "A Bhagavathula always plays his debts" doesn't work in real life, because Sam will take your 10 rupees anyway, and then ask "WTF is a Bhagavathula?"

Talking of real life, it's surprising how quickly, we, The Third-dies, have bunked our way through 3 years of campus life. And by campus life I mean, sitting paralyzed on chair watching any and every random crap available on DC fresh releases and FB news feed, simultaneously worrying about the incidence of a surprise assignment owing to our flawed genetic make-up that keeps us eternally haunted by academics.  

Needless to say, we have already started contemplating on the important questions about our future, like, "PS2 se grade kitna badhega?"

Okay, there are the serious ones too, who have a more mature take on their careers, and a better plan and course of action. They have already set their goals straight, and have firmly figured out what they'll eventually do in their lives, of course, after they're done writing GRE, TOEFL, GATE, CAT, CMAT, ICET, GMAT, XMAT, PGCET, IELTS, IBPS, UPSC and the 100 other exams that TIME gave an all-you-can-eat-buffet coaching for.

So it's almost like those wannabe-IITian times again. But without the pressure and knowledge.

Also, as we all know, 20th April is the "Get Publicly Photographed in Suits & Sarees without Feeling Awkward" day, when you'll finally get to see all the students in your branch at one place, and without an invigilator. However, the Farewell, as they call it, doesn't make much sense to the dual degree students, because the earth will go wobbling through space, crashing against meteorites, brushing with cosmic dust, to complete one whole revolution around the sun; and the dualites will still be here.

And this is the reason why these dreadfully warm and heavy costumes have been very cleverly chosen to be worn in this hot climate, so we at least look appropriately sad, if not feel, in our "farewell pics".
So be prepared, well in advance, to see your FB slowly turn into a love child of Barney Stinson and Tulsi Virani, as we shove so many pics up your news feed, you might as well gouge your eyes out than look at a suit/saree again.

Farewell to thee.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Will you be my...? Part 2

It's been a year since I wrote a post for all the "sexy single males in your area" to renounce their singularity, which they had been so preciously preserving and protecting like a grandma preserves and protects pickles. And the extremely helpful tips provided had changed the lives of millions around the world overnight, whose names I will dutifully withhold for privacy reasons; and because it's difficult to make up so many names.

But ironically, I've still meticulously managed to stay as lonely and deserted as a Neon atom, except even that damned blob of charge happens to successfully react with others when things get heated up beyond control, rather than taking an easy way out and expelling electron plasma in isolation.

And this huge span of unintended solitude and abandonment gave me long enough time for self-analysis, self-discovery and self-exploration. Yeah I'll continue when you stop grinning, pervert. So, this period of study and scrutiny lead to many findings that I'd like to share with you on this holy feast of St. Valentine who's got to be like, the most romantic saint. Ever.

Of course all parents may not like this eerie idea of you having a girlfriend, but that will last only until you debate with them, with a logical point of view which has to deal, in most of the cases, with education.

You:              Ma! I got a girlfriend yo.
You:              Whatevs mom. It's like I'm at the library all day long. Studies 'n shizzz y'know.
Your Mom:   Oh LOLzz! Ye le beta Chyawanprash kha.    

So here goes the list of what not to do this V-day with easier steps as you go down, to help you effectively score chicks, whom you had scored until now with the perfection and proficiency of scoring in a game of Flappy Bird. Being played on a wet touchscreen. Of a perpetually hanging Samsung. With a broken hand. Wearing a blindfold. While sitting on an angry bull. In a rodeo stadium. Set on fire.

I Don't become a superhero.

Alfred:  Why do we fall, sir?
Bruce:   Erm... eh... gravity, I guess.
Alfred:  No shit, Batsy!

But no. Things aren't this simple when you're a superhero. You have to 'begin', 'rise', 'fall', 'return', 'amaze', 'avenge' and 'originate', single and heartbroken; because the heroine is meanwhile romancing away with the villain / side character / supporting cast / sequel hero / prequel villain / random nobody, and only returns your advances in the form of philosophical advises, and occasionally, rant letters. So, as pessimistic it may seem, the truth is, all that great power, great responsibility and those ill-ventilated costumes are pretty overrated. Just like your chastity.

Now, moving on to realism.

II Don't trust Quora

Now that Quora is blocked in our campus (owing to some reasonably reasoned reasons, I suppose, whatever they may be) I have lost access to all those brilliant thought provoking  questions our highly mature and wise BITSian friends had put up on it. Example-
"I live in AH6. Is it worth going to the Lit. Crit. class?"
Well, no son. Mars might have pots filled with diamonds and dollars on it, but would you ever see me backpacking to the planet? Nope.

And coming to those testosterone laced Q/As on Quora, if I had really wanted to read a million worded fake-fictional-filmy love story from the mystical lands of IIT, cheesy and corny enough to be passed around as pizza, I'd have rather read Five Point Someone again.

III Don't believe the Bollywood

Bollywood films are all basically of one single genre. Fantasy.  
Now fantasy is a relative word; it signifies different incredulous and unimaginable things for different people, be it fairies and devils, or black magic, or wands and spells and potions, or just Ron Weasley walking out of the frigging friend-zone.

And SRK has to be specifically blamed here for planting the multiple fairytales and myths into our easily moldable Indian minds. So, in reality, the only attention you'll ever attract by playing a mandolin in a mustard field on a sunny morning will be that of a pissed-off farmer. Similarly, all you'd perhaps get by pulling a girl into a train might just be one grateful, "Thankyou bhaiyya!" Also, stalking the soul out of the woman will get you nothing; or at most, a restraining orde...WHAT THE HELL DID YOU JUST SAY?! YOU MEAN ALL THAT RAANJHANAA MOVIE WAS A LIE?! LOVE DOESN'T WORK THAT WAY?! YOU FREAKING MAD OR WHAT?! WHAT THE F... Shhh! Calm down, Kolavari Di.

And the side-effect of watching these mellow movies is, you are left with a pleasant feeling for half-a-day when the world starts looking greener and brighter, until the hormonal high eventually wanes out , and you re-realize that true love lies only in the hidden folder.

IV Don't Be Shy

The early bird gets the worm. And the early stud gets the bird. Or chick, whatever.
It's difficult, no doubt, to come out in the open, ours being the generation which has spent more time staring at a facebook profile picture than facing the actual person; nothing comforting us more than the warm fuzzy feeling of security, when we hide behind the laptop screens. But in-live is better any day than on-line. Mainly due to an increased clarity in communication outside, owing to that dynamic smiley generator that's in vogue nowadays, the face.

Or you can just directly... okay I'll just stop it here I'm already feeling nervous right now.

V Don't Be An Asshole

Now we all know how girls have an awkward affinity for assholes, but by the looks of it, it's clearly not working out in your case. Also this argument seems to be skewed because just being an asshole won't do the trick, unless you are also a mediocre singer with a painfully transitioning adolescent voice, and also sport an incredibly shitty attitude (which is a necessary qualification anyway) inviting homosexual jokes from all around the world. Or you have a "Yoyo" permanently hanging in front of your name.
So better avoid being a jerk. It's off limits.

Now we men are all a bit like Rahul Gandhi. We think about women and empowerment all the time. And Rahul is a bit like Abhishek Bachchan, being the worst actor in the family. But more on that later. So all I want to say is, the times are very desperate, especially with women misinterpreting the meaning of "all men are like dogs", which actually addresses our eternal excitement, eagerness and enthusiasm for some love. And also the unflinching and unwavering loyalty we have for every random passerby who has something to offer.  

So, hereby, with these noble thoughts and intentions, I wind up my scroll.
And wish you all a Happy "You're just a fortnight away from T1" day.
With a message to make love, not war, like that perfectly logical Axe Peace ad* says.

Signing out.

*Yeah, don't believe those bullshit deodorant ads too.