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Showing posts from June, 2007

of paper boats and potholes

Nostalgia and homesickness have an interesting effect on the past, in that it tends to become rather rosier than it actually was.

It rained here a few days ago. Nothing special in itself of course but it did get me thinking about the monsoon in India and the fact that this is the first one that I'm missing in 14 years. Having lived in both Bombay and Pune, I've pretty much seen everything that the season has to offer, right from the collective sigh that always goes out when the first showers hit town to the collective swearing that took place the day the heavens decided Bombay needed a long overdue bath... the day referred to as 'Terrible Tuesday'.

For the average Punekar, Simla Office ( the local met station) is an undeniably lovely bit of architecture but as far as announcing the imminent rains are concerned, it is practically redundant. Round about the end of April and never later than the 2nd week of May, the city fathers sheepishly come out of their stupor & in …

Part 2 - Multitudes of manic metaphors & maxims

"You live and learn. At any rate, you live" - Douglas Adams

Naveen and I are sitting outside the Kaul Genetics building when he casually mentions that there's a job opening for a student assistant at one of the departments at UAB. On-campus work opportunities are so notoriously rare that had this been the age of mythology, you could safely expect to see Hercules adding this one to his list.

To put it mildly, competition here was fierce.

Okay... time to make a confession. From the outset, I had the funny feeling that this job was mine. The facts speak for themselves - I was the only chap who could work the exact days and hours required, the work did not require any clerical experience nor expertise and well... I had a feeling.

Life... all it ever does is wait for an opportunity to deliver a kick to your unmentionables. Its success rate is remarkable too. I applied for it (the job, not the kick) and got it. "Drinks all around."

The fates threw the kick in for free. Th…

Part 1 - "Sometimes I wanna take to the road and plunder" - B. Dylan

"Arrey, you have an on-campus job na ? Where ? "
Deathly silence.

"Haan, so how much funding is your department giving you ?"
Deathly silence. A single droplet of sweat, starting at the brow, begins its journey toward terra firma .

"Man, there were so many positions open at the campus job fair last week. Did you go ?"

Deathly silence. The droplet had been feeling decidedly lonely but not any more. In fact, the droplet privately feels its getting a little crowded. And the terra is no longer all that firma. Of all the bamboos, the one called 'panic' is now firmly lodged, well... further elucidation unnecessary, methinks.

"So, yaar... where is your money coming from ? Did you get a scholarship or something from the university ?"

Deathly silence. Can't move any limbs. Possible onset of catatonic schizophrenia.

So ladies, gentlemen, kind readers, voyuers, bored souls etc. - I needed a job. Technically, I needed money... but being law-abiding for …