Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Whats New? What News?

There comes a time in your life when cheap thrills cease to be...well, cheap. When everything you do is subjected to a cost-benefit analysis in a neat looking excel sheet titled "daily expenses", and the high point of your day is a five rupee coin you magically discover when your fifth-hand semi automatic Washing Machine starts rattling a new tune. And that's when you start asking yourself, "When is the next pay check coming, b******d?" You also discover at least 91 new words in a reply to "What's new?" ( If you include the words in the parenthesis, make that 102)

Lets call it the quarter crisis. It's not to be mistaken for quarter-life crisis, when the hair you lose on your head magically appears in places you'd never imagined, like ear lobes. More about that later, after a few years hopefully.The quarter crisis occurs when you accompany friends to a swanky bar and realise you cant even afford any more than a quarter bottle of your favourite drink. And that's when you make a calculated decision like, "I think I'll stick to beer only. One Kingfisher pint, please."

Yes, much has changed. New job. New city. New companion. New friends. New books. New ring on the finger. New found obsession for loose change. But mostly, it's still the same. Still cribbing about how expensive things are. Still complaining about how little I save. Still whining about how little time I have for myself. Still trying to catch up on lost sleep. Here's to "same old, same old". Cheers, I guess. 

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Bombay's Not-to-do List

1. Hop into a fast train when you don’t know if it will stop at your destination
2. Hop into Virar Fast, even if you know where you are headed
3. If you ignore point 1 and 2, then get into a Virar Fast and joke about how it’s too slow to be called fast
4. Make a cricketing reference to point 3, like calling the Virar Fast the Venkatesh Prasad of the Mumbai Local Trains
5. Ask a station master where to buy tickets
6. Show off your first class pass
7. Ask two people on which side the platform comes. The first one will take offense at your lack of trust
8. Joke about how people here love hanging out with friends in trains, quite literally
9. Tell somebody that you won’t be getting off at the next stop
10. Fall asleep while you are standing inside a crowded train
11. Get off a train against the momentum
12. Wait till the train stops at Kurla
13. Ask a local to wait in the auto queue
14. Hop into an auto and call the man bhaiya when he talks to you in Marathi
15. Try explaining to the “bhaiya”(or not) that Khar 19th road is the same thing as Khar Uneesva.
16. Try taking an Auto at Kurla
17. Try looking for an Auto at Dadar
18. Hop into a bus at South Bombay. Five stops later, you’ll find that you are still at a walkable distance from your first stop
19. Hop into a bus when you only need to get off at the next stop
20. Listen to the cabbies sob story. He watches more Reality TV than you do
21. Ask the man on the street where you’d get the best vada pav
22. Calling any deal from Chor bazaar a steal
23. Support any team other than Mumbai Indians. Even India wouldn’t do
24. Bring up the subject of Sachin’s poor form
25. Bring up the subject of Sachin’s retirement
26. Ask people how much rent they pay. It’s worse than asking them how much they earn
27. Ask a hakim on the street where you could find the closest medical store
28. Ask a roadside vendor where’s the nearest ATM
29. Ask a Sandwich walla where he buys vegetables
30. Ask the pani puri walla where you could buy drinking water
31. Stand in front of Shah Rukh Khan’s house just to call one hardcore fan and tell her that. You just look like an idiot
32. Argue with a fan that SRK is actually a delhi boy
33. Go to a Bombay beach to smell the fresh ocean air
34. Go to Leopold’s and insist on a fast service
35. Go to Mondegar’s immediately after Leopold’s
36. Ask a Teen Batti resident why its called Teen Batti
37. Tell him why it’s called Teen Batti
38. Wear your best pair of shoes if you are pandal hopping during Ganesh Chathurthi
39. Take a train on Ganesh Visarjan day
40. Search for the fort at Fort
41. Ask for Kala Ghoda once you’re at Kala Ghoda
42. Joke around asking if Titwala was named after a friendly parsee gentleman
43. Eat Missal Pav when you’re wearing a white shirt
44. Asking a cabbie what a visitor could do at Grant Road
45. Complain about how you have no time in life
46. Complain about how little you earn
47. Complain
48. Tell a Mumbaikar you are writing a list like this one
49. And that you’ve managed to write upto No. 49
50. Insist on calling the city Bombay and not Mumbai.