Category Archives: Humour

breaking news – I

The only time I have really felt bad about the fact that I do not understand finance much is when people ask me my opinion on the absurd-yet-necessary petrol price hikes. Obviously I am affected by them but I do not know if I should be perturbed by them. One because I still do not know the mileage of my bike, after having ridden it for around three years, and secondly because in spite of what a particularly loud news presenter wants you to believe, I still trust the Government’s intellect on this one. Let’s not forget, it is this Government (and its allies) that fired a Railway Minister for hiking the railway ticket price by 30 paise per KM for AC 1-tier passengers and hence establishing beyond doubt that they are indeed an aam-aadmi’s Government!

Speaking of allies, of late, I have been very interested in the actions of a particular female whose delusional accusations have been the talk of the town. She has been very prolific in identifying Maoists and very particular about not being answerable to them.  ‘Over-acting’ is what some of my friends call her antics to be. And mind you, I am not talking of actor-turned-politicians like Jayalalitha in here.

Talking of actors, two of them have been prominently in news and interestingly, not because their movies are competing at the box-office (or at the Filmfare awards!). Instead, they are in news because of two serials that have been running very successfully on TV over the last month. Both of these serials have exposed a lot of evils in the society – female feticide, child sexual exploitation, dowry system, match-fixing, molestations, use of abusive words in public places and unwarranted tweets from the former owner of one of the serials who still believes he is the best thing that has ever happened to Cricket after Sir Don Bradman. Both these serials have also achieved a lot in a very short time frame. Parliament has passed a bill to protect children from sexual abuse. Shah Rukh Khan has been banned from Wankhede for five years and Siddharth Mallya has once again proved his intelligence quotient on twitter. Kudos.

The Mallyas remind me of two things – Deepika Padukone and Kingfisher. Both of them are a delight but their interests change quickly and lay in diverse fields. Unfortunately a great beer and a seductive calendar cannot keep you ‘high’ for long. Air India pilots, on the other hand, have the right to complain. Kingfisher at least has a really attractive crew to fly with, if they ever do.

The word ‘attractive’, over the last few weeks, has been all about Yami Gautam for me. In fact, I believed I was seriously addicted to Facebook till I noticed the frequency with which she posts her pictures on her Facebook page (and the time it takes to get a thousand likes and half a thousand shares). But that should not have come as a surprise to me. Given that, these days, le me notices more supposed-to-be-funny shared pictures than le friend’s status updates on le my Facebook wall. Weird sperms!

Facebook, meanwhile, has gone for an IPO (Interesting Phase Over?) and Mark Zuckerburg just married his college sweetheart after the IPO (Interesting Phase Over, again?). Priscilla Chan seems to be the luckiest woman alive. She has a husband who is a billionaire and is also young. Now, how many can claim to have a husband who is both? Husbands are either young or are billionaires. Most are none.

I cannot tell you what husbands remind me of. There is a very good probability that my girl-friend would be reading this! But all the husbands in the world know it. After all, Satyameva Jayate!

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what’s next on the list?

For the whole of the last week, most of the newspapers were filled with news related to Osama Bin Laden’s untimely demise and the circumstances under which it happened. Most news channels were also busy with the same but these days people take ‘Rakhi Sawant’s Swayamvar’ more seriously than them and so I have deliberately missed them. (Yes, Mr. Arnab Goswami, I know you have some questions. No, you do not have to yell.) However, none of the news articles answered a very pertinent question that came to my mind in light of the recent happenings:

Now that Saddam Hussein is dead and America has full control over the oil fields of Iraq (The greatest con of the twenty first century was pulled off by America by making the world believe that they are invading Iraq for biological weapons of mass destruction; after the movie ‘Inception’, of course!) and Osama Bin Laden is dead, ensuring Barrack Obama has gained enough brownie points for the next presidential campaign, how do the CIA keep themselves busy? In other words, what are the next top things on their agenda?

I did a bit of investigation on my own (Yes, I did put on a detective hat. No, I did not smoke a cigar. Smoking is not cool anymore and the cigars that they sell in Inorbit are damn expensive.) and thanks to a few trusted sources, your truly is now in possession of the top 5 things that the CIA is investigating these days.

I hereby share the same in this post. Remember, they are as updated as Manmohan Singh is about his corrupt allies and are as reliable as is the relationship of Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif (Yes, ‘Sheela ki Jawani’ was good. No, she still cannot act.)

5 of 5: Is Sreesanth really a cricketer?

Even though he is the most trusted water bottle carrier in the Indian cricket team (when contacted, every member of the team vouched for this information), the CIA still suspects if he is actually a cricketer. His penchant for remaining in the news (The catch in the T20 world cup finals, the slap by Harbhajan Singh and the ensuing hug by Preity Zinta, the dance after he hit Andrew Nel for a six, the L sign he showed Ricky Ponting) and the way he can go to any extent for the same reminds the CIA of the now dead Bin Laden who was known for his similar antics on the ‘Al Jazeera’ channel, which is known for running prime time shows on ‘How To Make Bombs’ and ‘How To Scare America’ and has the highest TRP among the Taliban ruled Afghanistan and some part of northern Pakistan, where there are terrorist camps according to India and lunatics according to Pakistan (as if there was a real difference between the two).

The CIA has still not obtained any conclusive evidence so far but they are still following this case keenly. When asked, Sreesanth had the following response to the allegations made against him. “I am as much a cricketer as Lindsay Lohan is an actor, Navjyot Singh Siddhu is a commentator and Ranvir Kapoor the new Seinfeld.”  This response has put most of the speculations to rest.

4 of 5: What is wrong with The Internet Explorer?

The CIA has been following this topic since the day Firefox was launched and according to latest information has still no clue. I mean, have a look at Firefox 4 or for that matter Chrome and compare it to Internet Explorer 8, they do not even look like they belong to the same period.

Everything possible under the sun has been tried. Microsoft has destroyed Netscape Navigator, copied Firefox, made tall claims and even bundled it free with the most widely used operating system in the world but little has changed with the respect to the acceptance of Internet Explorer. Somehow they never manage to get it right and though many versions of the same have been released, people hardly believe that anything has changed. “And why?” you may ask. Well, no one really knows.

The closest similarity to this topic has been ‘The Curious Case of Doordarshan’ (if you have seen the movie that I am referring to, you will understand the metaphor!), an erstwhile Indian channel that is now watched only if your cable operator is an idiot or if the channel that is showing the cricket match is not being aired by your cable operator (in which case, he is definitely an idiot!). The CIA has been observing this case with interest because of its similarity to the Internet Explorer case.

Unconfirmed reports say, Microsoft has been funding this investigation of CIA, though they do not agree for the fear of the future of ‘Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation’ if Microsoft’s share prices dip, mostly because even they have been looking for the answer for quite some time now and because they trust the CIA more than the people of India trust Suresh Kalmadi.

3 of 5: When girls say ‘I want to be left alone’, do they really mean it? 

This has been a hotly investigated topic. Feminist Associations all over the world have agreed that when girls say, ‘I want to be left alone’ they really mean it. But the same has been refuted by all the HAB (If you thought WAG did not have a counterpart, you have neither been a Husband nor a Boyfriend and if you thought WAG was a football related term, then you do not read the sports section of ‘The Times of India’ sincerely enough) associations who have instead gone ahead and claimed that there is something fundamentally wrong with the English Language and the way women think. They do not seem to be in sync i.e. when they say ‘I want to be left alone’, what they mean is actually the opposite!

The English Language Committee has clearly stated that according to their design documents, which can be found in numerous moral science books, emotions can never be put into words and hence they will take no responsibility of modifying the language. This has resulted in a deadlock which can only be cleared if the CIA finds the answer to the question.

When approached for her views on this topic, the President of a premier Feminist Association, a female herself, told, “I want to be left alone”. As per latest reports, she is not really happy that everyone obliged on the first I-want-to-be-left-alone itself.

2 of 5: Where’s Poonam Pandey?

Most people inside CIA are confused as to why they have been asked to locate a particular Poonam Pandey all of a sudden. She was as much in the news as MS Dhoni was after India won the cricket world cup but that is no reason to spend the valuable resources of CIA looking for her when they can actually be in the streets of Iraq killing innocent people or better feature in the sequel of Taken (ingeniously called as ‘Taken 2’).

However this recent interest in Poonam Pandey can be attributed to the reports that say Poonam Pandey had contacted the President’s office and had agreed to strip, albeit personally in the White House for the President of America if he succeeds in his mission of killing Osama Bin Laden. Her exact words being, “Such an activity would inspire the American President to be more focused on his job and not to waste his time trying to seduce White House interns.”

Taken aback, Barrack Obama had consulted his predecessor Bill Clinton who had in turn directed him to Monica Lewinsky for further insights into how to carry out the whole operation (No, I am not talking about the one in which Laden was killed). However after the successful completion of the mission (in which Laden was killed), she has suddenly gone into a hiding and hence the instructions to CIA to locate her as soon as possible.

Once she is spotted, the CIA has decided to respect the expectation that every (well almost) common Indian has from her, after which Barack Obama would tell the people of India the same line that he told to the people of USA on Bin Laden’s death. “Justice has been done.”

1 of 5: Who let the dogs out?

Since Anslem Douglas asked this question many years back (and my neighbor’s speakers ask it every time he is drunk) there has hardly been any progress made. As has been reported, it is now in the top of the to-do list of the CIA. So hopefully we will have an answer soon and that idiot, leaving next door to mine, will find a better song to listen to when he is drunk.

So there we go. The most awaited list of the post Osama-Bin-Laden period has been exposed. “When can we expect the answers?” I really do not have a definite answer from the CIA. Meanwhile, I am trying to reach the WikiLeaks people to see if they can help. They seem to have all the answers these days (including the very complicated one of ‘why would any girl want to marry Rahul Mahajan?’).

This post is based on true stories but does not have any direct resemblance to any person living or dead. Any such resemblance is purely co incidental except if you are Harry Potter, in which case, I need to borrow that ‘Invisibility Cloak’ from you for a day. You can safely assume that the writer of this piece is nuts or can think deep and understand the extent to which a boring Sunday afternoon can make you crazy.

In any case, do let me know what other stories, you reckon, should make it to the top 5 of the to-do list of the CIA in the comments.

a study in the airport

Sitting at the airport and observing people around can be a lot of fun. No, I do not do that for a living (Thank God). I just happen to be in a situation where I am supposed to spend the whole day in Kolkatta Airport having arrived there from my hometown in the morning for a flight that is scheduled late in the evening. Not that I had an option but now that I have arrived and have nothing else to do, except flip through the pages of the ‘City Of Joy’ and ogle at the heavily made up air hostesses (Always believed Bengali girls are cute. Just got it confirmed.) who walk up and down once in a while, I decide to observe the multitude of people around me, each unique in their own little way but nevertheless can be classified into some group or the other as has been duly compiled below.

So here are the findings from yours truly:

‘Busy As A Bee’ Types:

They come with an air of urgency, rushing through the things at hand without a minute to spare. Looking at them from a distance, as they run through all the procedures at the airport, makes you feel as if the whole world owes its functioning to them. Typically in a business suite, these people create an aura as they come and go. It appears as if they are the only ones who in the world of cheap flights still hold on to the sanctity of the fact that air travel should be availed only when it is really urgent (or when the company pays for it!)

‘I Am Confused’ Types:

Then there are some who have the continuous ‘I-AM-CONFUSED’ look on their face (I am classifying them as a different group from the ‘First Time Fliers’ because there are some who are always confused, irrespective of the number of times they have flown before.) You will find them at every counter, with that same perplexed look, trying to understand what has suddenly come to take over them.

They make multiple rounds of each counter, missing a thing or two in each, only to come back later and complete them. They are also the ones who keep poking people around (read the beautiful air hostesses) with a question or two every time they are expected to do something. Sometimes I have a sinister feeling that this ignorance is just an alibi to talk to all those beautiful females around. I mean at the baggage counter how do you even come up with something like “Are you going to send it in the same aero-plane as mine?” “No. Obviously not. We have a chartered flight that will carry your luggage for you, sir, while you can travel with the rest of our passengers!” Uuhh.”

If you happen to be following one such person in a queue, rest assure by the time you have boarded the plane you would have complete understanding of the whole aviation machinery that is in place. Incidentally, I had none.

‘First Time Fliers’ Types:

They also belong to the ‘I Am Confused’ category but as mentioned above some of them remain in that category beyond their first flying experience. Also, ‘First Time Fliers’ have certain other characteristics that are worth mentioning.

For one, each one of them is under the mortal fear that the plane is going to crash. I mean, when you are so sure, why board the plane at all? Then there are the various last minute Pujas that they do and the rituals that they carry out to ensure that the former does not happen. And last but not the least, the relief that you see on their face when the plane finally lands. (The smile says it all. It is as if they had just carried out a lunar mission successfully.)

You would usually find them hanging around at counters, a little more than required, inquisitively looking around at the various things that are happening. You will also find them amazed at little things throughout the journey from how the security at the check-in works to the clouds that are visible through the window once the plane takes off.

‘I Know You Are Looking At Me’ Types:

This is a very interesting class of people (seen in all walks of life but very clearly observable in the airport.) They have this habit of doing something or the other that would catch the attention of the people around. In fact, they enjoy all the eye balls on them.

So you can find people who have that extra air of sophistication as they walk, throw that fake accent as they talk, type something very loudly on the keyboard, talk business on the phone so much so that it appears all the business deals are actually done in the airport.

A section of the Airport Authorities (ground staff or otherwise) also belong to this group and you can easily make them out. Watch out for the loud taps as the girl in red walks in front of you, or listen to the animated conversation that they have, loud enough to be audible to the people around and silent enough for them to make any sense out of it and you will understand what I mean.

‘I Am More Interested In Your Affairs’ Types:

This classification was initially not planned but was introduced later to include the girl sitting next to me who has been peeking at my monitor, right since I switched my computer on. I have caught her twice staring at my screen; trying to make sense of what I was typing. But after that coy smile that says ‘I am sorry. I peeped into your screen by mistake’ she gets back to what she has been doing; unabashed.

I am sure she has read the whole article by now. In fact, I am deliberately typing this part so that she reads it and may be then the point will get conveyed. (The one that I have failed to convey through my looks!)

‘Lost In Their Own World’ Types:

And let’s not forget all those who are happily lost in their own world. Ipods (I am sure it keeps more people busy than any other god-damn thing in the world), cell phones, a nice book, an interesting conversation, a nice article – they would find something or the other that would keep them busy and occupied no matter how long they have to wait at the airport or what people around them have been doing or trying to do.

That I guess covers them all.

And there comes the announcement. I got to rush. The girl in red has already called out my name and I must say she looks beautiful enough to be ignored.

So as of now, it is bye bye Kolkatta from the Mute Spectator!

a cut in the right hand index finger

So I have been nursing this cut in the index finger of my right hand for two days now which I so intelligently brought upon myself while trying to desperately open an already opened can of sweets (I can be real smart at times!) and since I could do nothing about the fact that my finger was cut, bandaged and was out of service for a few days (My finger’s sweet little revenge for the number of times I use it to hit my keyboard) I decided to observe how things in life change when something that we take for granted is suddenly made unavailable. And in the same process, I could not avoid noticing how people react to the sight of a bleeding finger and blood scattered everywhere.

So while the best of my friends were busy looking into every detail that would make me comfortable, I was busy making mental notes of things that would now spill on to this post. (Hilarious, sensitive or otherwise)

1. I have not been sick in a while and was missing on the attention that being sick can draw. Trust me, cut your finger, make it bleed and you would have the whole house running around trying to help you in one way or the other. Starting from gently holding your hand as you keep it dipped in turmeric, waiting for the bleeding to stop (someone told me it did) to running around opening the tap, getting turmeric, band-aids – man, you are the ultimate center of attraction! And once the bleeding stops, you will always have people saying nice and sweet things to you. (That sometimes can even be sweeter than the bloody can of sweets I was trying to open in the first place!)

2. You never realize how many doctors you live with till you do something like slitting your finger. I mean, no sooner had my finger been cut, I was immediately moved into the Intensive Unit of Care, an emergency meeting was summoned, all possible implications and remedies were discussed, the best solution to tackle the problem worked out and implemented within a time frame that would put the best hospitals to shame. And everything was picture perfect!

3. An extra ordinary sense of bravery sweeps you when you tell people how you dealt with the whole crisis of a cut finger without screaming or without any fear. Add to it, the picture of a towel that you used to clean the wound, soaked in blood as a testimonial to your stories of bravery and you can definitely expect a few raised eyebrows and a few ‘Oh-My-Gods’. You can then bask in the glory that none of you friends have shed so much blood in recent past and that makes you an unusual hero.

4. You can put your latest updates on Gtalk, Facebook and Twitter and would realize you have a lot many friends than you thought you did. There will be so many people who will keep coming back to you enquiring about your poor finger that after sometimes you would have enough confidence to pick up a fight with Adonis himself.

5. Life becomes a mess even with one dysfunctional finger out of ten. In fact this kind of a relationship among the ten fingers reminded me of the lines from the ‘Three Musketeers’ – un pour tous, tous pour un (All for one, and one for all). Things that you took for granted, things that happened by themselves – brushing your teeth, washing your face, dipping your fingers into Tandoori Chicken – all become activities where you have to tread your foot (oops fingers!) carefully, hoping that you do not raise the ire of the finger who is on medical leave and does not like to be intruded with any amount of mundane work, you usually make it do.

6. Typing on the keyboard becomes a nuisance. It takes ages to type words using your middle finger instead of the rightful index finger. There were times when out of sheer frustration or out of regular compulsion I hit at the keys with my index finger only to whine with pain and realize that fingers are like girls – You would not notice how much you need them unless you hurt them and they take offense at the same. And as all guys do, I am in the ‘I-am-sorry’ mode these days, nursing her ego and hoping we would be in working terms sooner or later. A very moody girl she is, I must confess!

7. There are a few others – relatively less humorous but significantly more important – things that you realize about people around you and about yourself, but I will skip that part for now. I have conveyed the same to the people who were involved personally and will always be glad I could make those discoveries about them. Or maybe, I just discovered something about me.

And that brings me to the thought – if this is what a cut finger can do to you, don’t you think it would be interesting to be a cancer patient for a while!

P.S. The idea was never to mock at anyone. But I felt a serious article on these lines would never have the same effect that a humorous one will and that decided the tone of the composition.