Wednesday, April 30, 2008

My 5 Laws of Babies

People who are close to me would know the effect I have on kids. And by kids I mean newborns to 5 year olds.  

From my observations I've formulated a few Laws that seem to explain this phenomenon.

Law 1
Newborns (or any kind of baby) will instinctively cry if I'm somewhere around. 

Law 2
The crying will not stop until I am 10 Kms away from them (again instinct).

Law 3
Once the babies start crawling, they instinctively crawl in the opposite direction upon sensing my presence. And if they cant do that, then Law 1 applies followed by Law 2

Law 4
The moment I enter a room, all toddlers who are able to walk will spot its parent and run faster than a speeding bullet to go and hide behind the parent. A corollary to the rule is that they will also take to peeking from behind them from time to time. 

Law 5
As soon as they cross the magic age of 5, a transformation will take place where by they ensure that Law 1, Law 2, Law 3 and Law 4 will apply to me in that order :)

Friday, April 18, 2008

The Bike Race

Those of you who read my previous post on my sporting capabilities will appreciate that im not too good at it... But you will also appreciate that i do not shy away from a challenge either :) In that same spirit, i entered a bike race while i was in college. 

I got my first bike just before i joined college as a gift from my mom for passing the Kerala entrance and securing admission in my college. So you can imagine how charged up i was when barely a few months from getting the bike i got the opportunity to showcase my driving skills. I spent days... nay, weeks day dreaming of utter glory. Unlike normal athletics where your muscles and stamina are tested, this did not require ay of that. all it required was driving skills and a good bike... 

And damn it! i had the best bike there was. A Yamaha RXZ. THE bike of the day. There was no other bike like that in college (Mine being a pretty small one at that!). I prepared hard for the race. Used to get up in the morning and go riding. I knew the grounds of my college and they were no mean feat. i reckoned it would be kinda cross country. And hence i drove the bike to Munnar dragging along sheer cliffs and jagged rocks. One mistake, and i wouldnt be here writing this blog. 

The D-Day arrived. I was ready. Clothed in racing helmets and jackets and gloves and trainers. I looked around to see the other participants either in regular jeans or in Mundu (Traditional Kerala attire)... Poor devils... they had no chance!

We got ready at the starting line. I was revving my engine. I cud see the ladies shouting and waving. Man! im gonna be smothered after i win this... and its gonna be a breeze. 

The whistle blew.... I zoomed ahead leaving the rest to eat my dust. Before i knew it, i was at the finish line. That was pretty short... just a 50 meter race. maybe it was a pure drag race... anyway it dint matter... i was first.. I turned back at the slow pokes... 

But why were they sooo slow? 

The surprise... the shame... The irony of it all!!! 

It was a Slow Bike Race... The LAST one across is FIRST!!! :-S

Friday, April 04, 2008

The Deluded War

Last Saturday I went to the movies at PVR. I usually go alone these days as my wife is away minting US Dollars for my MBA study (which, as it turns out, was not necessary after all not that i have got admission to GLIM). Anyway, I was searching for something interesting and that’s when it caught my eye. A giant snake wrapped around some huge skyscraper. No, it wasn’t the New York twin towers - the disaster magnet in all English movies... (funny how that turned out eh?).

Almost immediately something in me also raised its ugly head... kinda like I was being drawn to it. I sometimes wonder if I’m a snake in disguise - my wife swears that I hiss in my sleep and I keep telling her its my way of snoring... I slither around in bed but that’s normally in search of the blanket that fell of while I was slithering... so on and so forth.

So, it was a new release, an English movie - D-War. I found myself drawn to the counter. On the way, my foot slipped and I almost fell face first. Was it a sign or just coincidence? I did not pay heed. I rushed over to the counter.

"Do you have tickets left for D-War?" I asked.

The clerk gave me a smile and asked "How many sir?"

"One, can I choose the seats please?"

"Oh, that won’t be necessary. You'll find that you can comfortably sit anywhere" That was the second sign. I still did not pay heed. But I did pay the clerk Rs 200/- for the ticket.

Wondering why none of the seats seemed to be taken, I move to the frisking area. As soon as they made sure that i did not have outside food on me in the guise of security check, I was ushered into the waiting area. After just 5 mins, the announcement for the movie was flashed on the display. I went in, accompanied by hardly 15 similar souls. It was 10 AM

The movie started off with an old man telling a child some story about some snake sand dragons… I lost my interest somewhere about that time… I looked at my watch.. 10:02AM. Great! It’s gonna be lovely aint it?!

Well, to sum it up, to say that I was clinically depressed after seeing it would be an understatement!! I’m yet to get over the effects... and I think its affecting the little brain that I have.. I’m still depressed, and about to kill myself for the Rs200 I paid for the ticket.

People sitting on my either side left by the time of the break. Smart… which is not something that I can say so myself… (Well, in this context!!) Since I had nothing better to do, I sat thru the whole ordeal, my brain going numb with every passing minute. Really, after the movie, all those sinful souls (I’m certain it was providence punishing us) who sat thru the entire drab walked out of the theatre like a group of zombies... I’m not kidding... not my imagination... honest... I’m pretty sure they sprayed some biological contaminant during the show...

By the time I found myself, I had somehow managed to reach the ground floor... and soon I fled from Forum. I was more worried about the looks that people were giving me. It was like I had done some big crime... I vividly remember someone shouting, "Stop that man!"... dunno if they meant me but I dint wait to find out!!

Thursday, April 03, 2008

The day i ran for my life...

I’ve never been the athletic type. Sports and games have never appealed to me. So it naturally follows that I was quite the unhealthy, scrawny(well, not really) and timid kid. Infact, so much so that I couldn’t raise a stone if it were attached to a dragonfly! Up until my 7th std, my favourite lunch time activity was catching tadpoles in the near by spring and ofcourse eating lunch. Don’t start being squeamish, I never did both at the same time! Sheesh…

But this was not always the case. There was the time when I was in the NCC. I was fit as a fiddle. I could march across fields and mountains. I could lift boulders with my strong muscular arms. I could swim across raging rivers. I was your regular boy next door Arnold Swarchenegger. Heck! Who am I kidding.. I was more like a pig on steroids!! Nowadays, my pathetically puny body cannot even walk 2 paces without having an asthmatic attack.

Back then I never wasted an opportunity during the annual sports days in my school to show off the little athletics skills that I did have… namely, iddily and pie eating contests. These were part of the homour sports we used to have. Sadly, I wouldn’t come first even for that either… there were bigger and better pigs around! But this post is not about how piggy I can get, rather about a time when I entered the 800m race.

Like I mentioned before, I never wasted an opportunity. But usually I was not allowed to enter as there were limits kept on the number of ppl who are allowed to enter from a house. As luck would have it, there was a shortage of athletes for the 800m event and I jumped at the chance and entered. Our physical education master gave me a scornful look as he put in my name. And my house captain was looking around for a replacement so as to escape the humiliation of having one of his house come in last. I think he was secretly hoping that I would atleast finish the race. Little did they know I was going to shock them and the entire school in a couple of minutes.

The race consisted of running 4 rounds on the 200m track that was set up for the games. I took up my position on the 3rd track from the inside. I looked around to see my fellow athletes and found all of them with hungry looks on their faces as if they were going to run all over my tired ass. I looked around to the spectators. There were none. The 800m event was not a very popular event. Good, I thought. Less the number of people who see me the better. The Phy ED master asked us to get ready. And I saw all of them go down on their knees ready for the sprint. I dint bother! Hey I was not there for the glory, I was there purely for the shame!!! I too got into position, and by that I mean standing there wondering about how best to avoid being trampled.

He blew the whistle. I shut my eyes and started running like I never did before. Occasionally I opend my eyes to see if I was on the track. After what seemed an eternity and many many rounds, I started hearing people shouting at me in encouragement. There were really rubbing it in weren’t they. Did the others already finish the race 2 hours back?

I opened my eyes to a shocking sight. There was the finish line and across it the red ribbon welcoming the winner. And I was in front of everyone! I glance back to take a look at the others. The fastest boy in school, Mr Joseph, was a few meters behind me. I looked around to see a swarm of open mouthed spectators cheering me on. I doubled my effort to run even faster. Maybe ill set a school record.

Thru the corner of my eye I could see Joseph gaining on me. I could not loose now. Every muscle in my body was aching. But it dint matter. What mattered was that I was in front of everyone else. I strained. Just a few meters more. I ran as fast as my chubby legs would take me. But ultimately Joseph beat me and passed the beautiful red ribbon inches ahead of me.

A moment of silence and then the crowd erupted. All my housemates came rushing to me. Our house was trailing in the over all rankings. And all of a sudden the second prize belonged to our house… precious second prize. I was down. People piled all over me. Girls boys… there was no stopping them.

Then the Phy ED master came up to us blowing his whistle. Maybe that’s how he salutes winners, I thought. He was waving his arms frantically over his head. he was shouting. Something about my second prize being null and void!! What?! Why?! How unfair. We demanded the reason for the preferential treatment. And he readily gave it to us.

We were’t awarded the second prize because… I never completed the race… I was a good one lap behind everyone!!! :-S