Sunday, June 14, 2009

Disadvantages of Being Short and in a Packed Club Any Given Saturday Night

So my best friend, concerned with my absolute lack of updated knowledge on 'music-y joints', dragged me to a popular club downtown last night. It had all the essentials - celebrity DJ, girls with make up and cocktail dresses, men with the buttons of their shirts opened (seriously, its NOT sexy) and the bass hitting the roof.

Naturally, I sauntered in expecting to have a good time. Then it struck me that I was having a lot of difficulties that most other people around me were not. And these difficulties I correctly attributed to that face that I'm miniscule (Ok I'm 5'2", but that’s not saying much either):

  1. One has to stand on tiptoe in order to be spotted by the bartender, which results in a great deal of frustration and loss of energy in trying at get his attention. Aaargh!
  2. One is at the underarm level of most men and therefore has to tolerate gusts of perfumed breezes wafting in the direction of one's nose. Probably one of the few situations in life where one can say 'Warning: Breathing can be fatal'.
  3. One has to wear heels and therefore break an ankle in an attempt to shake a leg.
  4. One gets one's feet stepped on. A LOT. And the crime usually goes unnoticed by the perpetrators.
  5. While dancing, one mostly gets shoved around in the general direction of the swaying of the large hairy man next to one. And non-coordination messes with my head. Badly.
  6. Any cool moves go unnoticed due to the lack of height.
  7. Below the line of vision of most cute men :(
  8. The mirror in the ladies' will not offer a full length view of oneself. At the most, till mid-thigh. Dayum.
  9. Get asked for proof of one's age at the entrance. Ouch. I'm 23, moron. Don't let my youthful beauty fool you.
  10. When the DJ waves at the crowd and asks if 'we're havinaaa goood taaaaaaaiiiiiim?!', no point in waving back enthusiastically. He can't see you. Just go back to floor level where you belong, Hobbit.

But despite it all, I can't say I had a bad time. Lost a few kilos dancing, peered over a banister from the fifth floor into the pouring rain, shrieked and jumped when a good song played and, like an experienced and frustrated Bangalore party-goer (you couldn't tell that I'm not actually one), yelled and shook my fist at all and sundry because there was no after-party.

All in all, an evening well spent.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

There's a nice How-D'yu-Do!

So picture this - you're to meet a long -lost friend after a long-long time. Waiting at the smartly decorated coffee shop, you're sipping on iced tea and looking at the door every few minutes. Soon, he walks in and glances around unsurely, looking for you and reaching for his phone because he assumes you're late (which you normally are). In your excitement at having made it there before him, (hah!) you wave madly at him and stroll across to greet him. And so it begins.

How exactly do you say 'Hi'?

This is one dilemma that I have been confronted with numerous times since my adolescence. You see, back in the nineties, it was unheard of for young boys and girls to greet each other in public (in ower belowwed India) with anything other than a handshake or an oral exchange of pleasantries. But what with globalization and westernization (and other such things that are to be frowned upon, naturally. Ushoo) knocking at our doors, boys and girls began to (yes) hug. Which was still alright, as long as they had just one standard way of doing it, but that wasn't to be. Things had to, of course, get more complicated.. And so began the Ultimate Debate of Which Hug to Use for Whom and When, but Without Hurting the Feelings of All Concerned.

I have largely categorized the different Ways of the Hi as follows:

  1. The simplest of all - An oral 'Hi!/Hey!', and so on.
  2. The handshake.
  3. Hug Type 1 - You approach each other from the side, much as shy lovers on a park bench. You then slide your arm around the other's waist, but not too familiarly. This is for acquaintances and the disliked.
  4. Hug Type 2 - You approach each other up front. Shake hands, and pull each other for a closer hug. Follow with a few familiar and loud pats on the back and draw away. Quickly, lest you give people the wrong impression. This one is usually from one Boy for the Boys That One Hangs Out With.
  5. Hug Type 3 - A modification of Hug Type 2, except without the back patting. Just a bumping of shoulders attached to the hands clasped will do the job here.
  6. Hug Type 4 - A full-frontal hug, just stopping short of a bear hug. For long-lost friends, bros and soul-sistahs, this is warm and meant ONLY for people you trust. Seriously. You can even throw in a quiet peck on the neck, if accessible and appropriate.
  7. Hug Type 5 (and my favourite) - the Bear Hug! *applause* Can make you feel completely loved and simultaneously cause intense pain through the powdering of every bone in your torso, if administered by a large but well-meaning boy.
  8. And last and definitely the least, Air Kissing. Brrrr.

So I ask you - which one to use when? It's not even so much about the social situation anymore, as much as it is most often about the levels of alcohol (or hormones) in one's blood. And the most embarrassing situations arise when one is prepared to administer one kind of hug but is confronted with another type being administered by the other person. The fumbling and awkward mumbles that follow certainly make for interesting studies in Extremely Mortifying Moments. I've had times when I've approached with Hug Type 1 in mind, but been given Hug Type 4 by a fresh-after-the-gym 6-footer, with the result that my nose went smack into his armpit. I won't even go into the aftermath, it's now a well-documented case in medical history. And has, needless to say, scarred me. Then there was the time when I held out my hand with the intention to shake the hand of the formidable old patriarch of a Punjabi family. My bad. His hand moved to my head to bless me, and mine moved smoothly in the direction of his feet to receive them with all due respect. Best save of my life.

But my favourite memories have been of when, time after time, my evil girlfriends and I pretend to be meeting after eons in a club/preppie place and greet each other with high-pitched shrieking and a flurry of air kisses. The P3Ps around in their shinies and stilletos can NEVER tell if we're just exaggerated-but-genuine versions of themselves, or if we're merely mocking them. The suspicious and curious looks that are thrown our way as our bemused spectators swallow every giggle of our performance, are priceless. And say what you want, we shall never tire of them.

Pooh to the problems of conversation skills and the difficulties of what to say to people. Let's figure out how to get it started, shall we?

What was to be Done? - Things I've Chosen to do to Ward Off Idiots.


I was on my way to school

One fine chilly morn,

Looking for a blasted auto

In my uniform.

Suddenly, I felt a pinch

From an Unseen-Obscene One

In places I shan't mention here,

But oh! What was to be done?

I chucked my bag and looked for him,

(My blood was boiling madly)

The owner of the hand that had

Thus violated me.

I socked and punched him, One and Two,

And kicked him in the shin.

I hope that boy will now think twice,

'Fore dooin' it aggin.


One afternoon on Hosur road -

My friends and I were looking

Forward to some coffee and some


Suddenly, I felt a pinch

From an Unseen-Obscene One

In places I shan't mention here,

But oh! What was to be done?

Still shocked from it, I cut short

My friend's conversation,

And turned to find the pervert walking

In the other direction.

I held him by the shoulders and I

Kneed him in the crotch.

His squeals and grimaces were

Certainly a sight to watch.


Was on my way home from work

One chilly July evening.

Was sitting on a bus that through

Traffic was madly weaving.

Suddenly, I felt a pinch

From an Unseen-Obsecene One

In places I shan't mention here,

But oh! What was to be done?

The pervert in question stood beside

Me, and then pretended

That his pressing and touching and leching

Was purely unintended.

At the next turn, my elbow caught him

In... You guessed right!

I smiled fake-apologetically,

But he knew I'd won that fight.