Monday, December 03, 2007

December Thoughts

1. In 23 days from today, I will turn 37. Which means three years short of 40. Which means almost middle-age. Which means half a life. How did this happen? Only the other day I was 30, but calling myself 29 in chatrooms. Compare '29/m/Chennai' with '37/m/Chennai'. The first is bad enough, the second has no hope.

2. I was on the Deccan flight from Kolkata to Chennai. I always ask for the aisle seat, for two reasons. One, as an extension of the habit developed in the trains -- in the aisle seat, you can get up for a smoke as often as you want without disturbing your neighbours. Two, if there is no woman seated next to me, there could be one across the aisle.

Anyway, this time, next to me, was a Marwari couple. Their prosperity reflected on the man's waistline and the Nokia handset that he was carrying. What irritated me was that he not only ignored the announcement asking people to switch off their phones, but also kept talking throughout. He must be talking to someone at the destination, for the wife, who sat by the window, kept butting in, "Ask him to send a big car." She was repeating the 'big car' so often that he gave the phone to her, and she told the person on the other end, "Listen, send the big car, ok? There's lot of stuff." I distinctly remember that while I watched her talking on the phone, Kolkata airport was already whizzing past and the plane was taking off.

The problem with Deccan is you have to shell out money for the snacks. I had already spent Rs 450 at the airport for Mark Tully's new book, and was in no mood to spend more. So I ignored the stewardess when she came along. The Marwari man, however, asked for chips. He was handed a packet of Lays. Suddenly, an evil thought crossed my mind. I asked for a packet of cashew-nuts. Mighty expensive they are, and expectedly so -- a dozen or so nuts for Rs 80. I tore upon the pack with my teeth and started savouring the salted-chillied cashew while reading the book.

"One minute," the Marwari man hailed the stewardess, "can I have cashew?"

"Yes, sir."

The man examined the packet by turning it around and upside down. "How much?" he asked.

"Eighty rupees, sir."

The man went into a quick confabulation with his "big car" wife, and then called the stewardess. "Sorry, nahi chahiye (Sorry, I don't want it)," he said. I felt a sense of victory -- as if I had avenged his refusal to switch off the phone.

But back in Chennai, I pondered over it. The man returned the cashew nuts not because he could not afford it, but because he found it silly to spend Rs 80 on it. That is why he has the money, while I have cashewnuts.

3. I saw two movies during my vacation. Bhool Bhulaiyya and Om Shanti Om. I still haven't figured whether Bhool Bhulaiyya was supposed to be a comedy or a scary movie. Will someone tell Priyadarshan to take a break? Ok, I will tell him that when I see him next time in the Leather Bar. Om Shanti Om, at least, did not pretend to be a serious movie. It was fun all the way, especially for those who have a fair idea of the films of the 70's and the 80's. One hilarious scene I can never forget: Shah Rukh Khan telling Deepika that how in friendship there's no scope for 'sorry' or 'thank you'; and the young Sooraj Barjaatya noting that dialogue to use it in a movie that was to come years later. That's ultimate comedy, according to me.

And what more can I ask for than the hottest movie of 2007 opening with the bindaas voice of a man who died in 1987? You know who am I talking about, don't you?

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

whoopeee.........m the first to comment........yeeeeeeee.ok enough of the celebrations.usually i am the khayo piyo khisko types, par chalo aaj himmat karhi li.
so u are railing over the fact that u'll be turning 40 in 3yrs, but life is not in the future i guess.
n u look like a conflation of Mohan Lal n Arvind Swami, in short kaafi sonne dikhte ho,toh logon ko bulane do ''uncle'',ki pharak paenda hai.
chalo wish u a happy grt birthday in advance aur saadi bhi paanch dino ke baad hai.Tussi bhi no.8,assi bhi no.8.
see thats d reason i nvr comment,its usually high class fudge.

punnya said...

1.That was quite an honest account of your b'day musing... .
2. travelogue...interesting..simply because the description was so realistic that one could almost visualise it...concluded by a profound thought.
3.the film reviews of the much awaited flicks were simply wonderful...u just penned down my thoughts on seeing the movies...
The blog was great...BG surely knows to captivate his readers..

Bishwanath Ghosh said...

Anon: Naam aur pataa to bataakar jaao!

baddy said...

Am not even getting into the age-contemplation thing, but trust you to work KK even into this post :-) Good stuff. BTW, when you said "December thoughts" I thought it was something to do with the season - what with the issue and all...

Deepika said...

hmmmmmm arrey naam aur patte mein kya rakha hai.

Magnificent Minds! said...

Quite nice, as usual i should say!

Two brilliant things in the post.

- A very thin line of diff between, being silly in spending and being cautious.

- How important/significant it is for priyadharshan to take a break. ha ha ... i did see that movie. it was suppose to be a re make of a great malayalam movie.

Like always...
Loved reading OTGM.

Ann said...

Nice movies are becoming a very scarce commodity now, because everybody (film makers) want to do easy work and easy money, by mixing some comedy or tragedy with known theme. Nobody is able to bring anthng new. Here only new generation has to enter the field with new choices. Interaction of intellectuals like u with Film Directors may change the scenario. Y can't try a hand.

Nepali Akash said...

I've always been the "khayo piyo khisko types" in your blog, as anonymous says. This time I just could not resist to "sweetsling" you. You are an articulate bastard!! Have no doubt about that.

Bishwanath Ghosh said...

Thanks Akash. Would love to see you here and hear the voice of Pokhara more often. One of these days I would like to go there.

samforyou said...

chily december and thoughts to go with it. Well, awesome writeup as usual:)i guess they say life actually starts at 40 , so aap toh abhi paida hi nahi hue:)bas jee lijiye zindagi.abhi toh bahut door talak jaana hai. Glad u felt the same for OSO. Guess most of us liked the movie for its brainless attitude and fun:)..keep writing Ghosh. you keep the adrenaline flowing..

Anuja Byotra said...

"That is why he has the money, while I have cashewnuts." lol very perceptive!

My fav scene in Om Shanti Om is when they open Manoj Kumar's passport to show his pic - priceless!!!

Anubhuti said...

If you were a woman, I am sure, you would have married Kishore Kumar !!

Raj Gaurav Debnath said...

What a profound line - That is why he has the money, while I have cashewnuts...