Friday, December 24, 2021
Sunday, January 19, 2020
Ironing clothes is a big chore. There are people who send them out for ironing and complain and some others who do it themselves and still complain. I clearly belong to the second category.
The isthriwala... now how do we call them in English? Random searches reveal the word to be 'presser'. I wonder if it is because they press clothes or because -by my own experiences- they are hard pressed for time or simply because they handle a lot of 'press'ure, particularly during the weekends. I simply would like to use the term Ironman. Not unlike the suited superhero these men do make our lives peaceful.
Many times you can ascertain the happenings in a household or guess the season of the year simply by looking at the bulk on an Ironman's head, that is, if they are not covered with old worn bedsheets, old veshtis or simply placed inside the ubiquitous 'kattai pai'. Formal white shirts and plain trousers for men, neat salwar kameez, crisp cotton sarees, western formal wear for women on working days, blue formal shirts and plain trousers for men, uniforms for kids on Mondays, white striped formal shirts and trousers for men, shimmering silk sarees and pavadais during navarathiri and formal white shirts and trousers for men. And sometimes when you peep into a drycleaner's shop you can find cleaned and ironed travel clothes and well, formal shirts and trousers for men!
However, some people are very clear about certain things. More the muscle more pressed out and neat and new their clothes become some feel! So they send their clothes to the other side of the city or sometimes country for ironing. My friend for example prefers newpapers to be folded in among her clothes. Another prefers newspapers only in her mother tongue and sends clothes to Telengana.
We on the contrary prefer doing everything ourselves. This has resulted in four iron boxes, two for steaming, one for normal and one more for travel. Plus an ironing table. Plus Sunday newspapers diligently collected and neatly pressed to aid us. Plus a place earmarked for the above activity. Plus an app to remind us of the chore...
To cut a long story short, one morning, after a long week which included lending one ironing box to a neighbour, one box conking out and then simply unable to find the other two, we woke to find a pile of clothes yet to be ironed with school and office hours looming ahead. Even before I could point a finger the husband quipped, "You are the one always ironing out things, so I thought you would have done it" and takes the role of iron man and starts doing his work.
Given the wee hours and barely able to open my eyes, I only wished I became Dr. Strange and possess the time stone or still better....the Hulk!
Friday, January 17, 2020
I love quizzes. Doesn't mean I know the answers to all questions. A wise man once said, 'Only those who do not know the answers must ask questions'. As soon as I came across this I clung to it like a sloth to a tree and started asking questions much to the annoyance of family and friends. And not the 'what is for dinner' types. I mean real questions like what does the pale blue dot mean to why did PewDiePie take a break from YouTube.
When I was younger and more innocent I would participate in anything that vaguely resembled a quiz. I held on to certificates that was given for answering questions like how many bones are there in the human body. I would participate in sports quizzes (because I answered most questions in the auditions) and not answer a single one in the finals, naively boasting that I was the only girl in the finals not comprehending the irony and well, the ignominy of it all. This I would squarely blame my schoolmates for calling me a know-it-all, foolishly basking in its glory not realising that in their quest to not participate they found a scapegate.
This continued for some years until I found the pleasure of participating in open quizzes where one can hide behind many many quizzers. The best part about these are that you can simply boast of participating because year after year after year the same sets of teams would appear in the finals. No one would even notice your blank stare in the dark auditorium. Nor would they look at your, I knew it or the intelligent nods one gives to absolutely incomprehensible questions. All in all these are quizzes where we can say the grapes are sour and quietly slip away.
Thankfully I found a group of friends as passionate as I about quizzes and as as nonchalant, and not in the least conscious about giving blank stares. Most fun is derived while guessing the answers. But looks like the quizmasters have seen through the guessing game. Even a simple question like, "What is vadacurry made of", is twisted so much and presented such that we have to recollect all master chef episodes without even realising the answer is closer home. One question in its twisted fashion was, 'How is the animal 'dhol' known down south. The twist was when the qm said it had two words. Two of us browbeat the third member when she said Chennai (sennaai), which was, well, the correct answer! We actually carry pain relief tablets for headaches arising from simply reading the questions.
Many a times our passion has seen us get ready a whole month ahead posing question after question. We have a, you guessed it right, a WhatsApp group for that. We get the entire household geared up, plan and prepare for the day, getting the children to keep quiet as not to muddle our minds, staying out of anyone's discussion a good 30 meters away. It could affect our concentration in the prelims you see. Our target will always be to better the previous year's score by a point. We are clearly not interested in getting humiliated on stage. We are very happy to sit in the audience and watch the finals, thank you very much! Middle aged maturity showing that it is all about participation and not competing with the the younger crowd. A glorified way of saying that we don't know the answers!
Coming back to the said D-day, we in our enthusiasm once went all the way to the other end of the city only to realize the quiz was not on that day but the following weekend.
This post was inspired when one night I suddenly woke up with a question, 'why was my answer to a particular question - hitler's meesai. The search (at 2AM) revealed a game related to WW2. Still unable to comprehend I began writing this.
Saturday, December 14, 2019
Wednesday, November 20, 2019
Monday, November 18, 2019
The husband walks in and after many attempts to attract his family's attention stations himself right in front of the television with a cup of coffee, that he had to make himself and inquires, "What are you all doing?"
He turns around only to watch chicken, quails, ducks and salmon being grilled. 'What story? And why are you all watching this? ' And you, are you going to attempt any of these?' he asks me.
The other day I visited a friend at her place for lunch. This lady cooks beautifully from what her Instagram and Facebook posts reveal. I eagerly anticipate this luncheon invitation and skip all three meals the previous day.
I enter her house and see her frantically photographing delicious food laid out aesthetically on the table. Even as I spot deliciousness beckoning me I can't help sensing unpleasant smell drifting from somewhere. My phone beeps and I see the food on my Instagram feed even before I get to the vicinity of the table. I salivate and congratulate my friend on her latest culinary masterpiece.
She quickly hastens me to the table before my drool spoils her elegant carpet. I wistfully look at the food even as she plonks a plate laden with some pale rice accompanied by some dispirited looking vegetables. Bewildered and a little humiliated by this extremely partial treatment I attempt to touch the photographed and already much liked plate only to receive a friendly slap on the wrist.
"Hey this is the actual food. That is only for social media" she giggles uncontrollably as I spot some cardboard beneath the tastefully arranged hyderabadi biryani. 'That will make the dish appear much better you know' she says knowledgeably. I quickly gobble up the pale rice, mutter incomprehensible adulation and scoot before she brings her much acclaimed dessert.