Rickshaw-musings

Edit: This post was previously titled “10 ways to tell if you are in love” – An experimental title which proved to be successful judging by the 93 hits within 2 hours of posting.

I was sitting in the auto-rickshaw today, staring at the all the worldly things around me, and I suddenly realised I knew how Prince Siddhartha must have felt when he decided to renounce this world in search of enlightenment. Smart move there. I’m almost scared to write about the things I saw and how we should be changing our ways, because that will only elicit most of you closing the tab on me. And since that’s not desired reaction, I’ll try a different route. Stay with me on this one.

Aunty in red saree with black dots and Aunty in white saree with pink flowers were walking in the beach the day before yesterday. Aunty in red saree was talking about how her co-sister’s house was a pile of dump and Aunty in white saree was empathising.  Aunty R rummaged through her bag for her one last orange flavoured mentos, found it, ripped open the cover and popped it into her mouth. Her narration was starting to make her co-sister look like a human with ugly green fumes emanating.

<FLING>

My eyes perceive it in slow mo, one neat flick of the hand, one lopsided smile at aunty W, and the mentos wrapper was on with the beach sand, much to the disappointment of the hungry dog nearby who came sniffing for food. The action was so smooth and practiced to perfection, untrained eyes would’ve missed it. The adventures of the smelly co-sister continued.

At the theatre next to the beach, a group of college kids were watching a film called Vasool Raja MBBS an adapted versions of Patch Adams, some people would know it better as Munnabhai MBBS (just so everyone knows what I’m talking about). The scene where the hero hugs the janitor who cleans the hospital floors and thanks him has just gotten over. People are applauding and whistling, everyone has a warm fuzzy feeling in their heart and everyone loves the hero.  The film continues and at the very crucial moment, the much hyped scene-before-interval finds everyone looking happy and with bursting bladders. So our group of college students get up to go to the restroom and one among them is telling his friends how much the aforesaid scene affected him, how much he loved the hero for doing what he did…

…and walks right over the just-mopped floor of the theatre restroom, leaving the janitor staring daggers at his back.

Just outside the movie theatre, a woman in her early twenties was talking on the phone to her friend about how she should put her foot down and not let “that guy” walk all over her. About how she has the same dignity and pride as “that guy” and how she should stand up for herself. At that moment, a man with low waist jeans, a tight t-shirt, gelled hair, some cheap looking chains around his neck, and an ear stud walks up behind her. Ah, I can see recognition on all your faces girlfriends 🙂 The whole rigmarole of the overrated “eve-teasing” starts. I say overrated because it’s not that big a deal. They’re boys, they will be boys. All you need to do is knee them in the balls and they’ll be fine… for a while.  But our girl shuts up, she puts up with it, everyone around her puts up with it, and later, she goes home and cries about it to the same friend she was talking to a while ago, about standing up to “that guy”.

If SocialInterview asked these people the following questions…

To Aunty R: Why did you throw the mentos wrapper on the beach?

Aunty R: What do you want me to do? Waste time trying to find a dustbin? Besides, who cares about the beach, it’s dirty anyway. So what’re you going to do about it huh? Huh? HUH? <gets aggressive and red in the face>

To excited boy in the movie theatre: Why did you walk over the just-mopped floor?

(I’m assuming everyone knows that walking on wet floor before it dries, gets it really dirty… besides the fact that it’s dangerous)

Excited Boy: Oh, I didn’t notice. Besides, if I wait around for it to dry, I would’ve missed the movie! What do you care anyway?

To the girl at the bus stop: Why didn’t you react to that guy?

Girl: Oh, I’m just a girl. It’s better that I put up with whatever he does, rather than try and pick a fight. No one would’ve helped me anyway, if things had gotten ugly. I was just thinking ahead. Please stop asking me such questions, I don’t want such things to be made public.

Typical answers. All this time, I used to think maybe exposure is the problem, maybe education is the key. But hey, you and I are educated. If we were in those situations, we’d be giving the exact same answers.

The problem with us is that we’re indifferent, selfish, lazy, pretentious,  pre-occupied, skeptical and plain scared. In other words, humans of the 21st century. It’s almost funny 🙂 That’s our definition. If the fat pilot in the Axiom spaceship (Wall-E) asked the computer “What are humans?”, these are the words that would describe us. When people say, “but we’re just being humans”, it only strikes me as sad, because it’s true on one level, but very convenient on the other. If something is wrong, blame it on the genus.

I don’t want to talk about what we should do or what we could do. I’m just here to pose to you a proposition. We watch movies, we read books and blogs, we follow the news, we are constantly exposed to revolutionary ideas and we are all the time taking resolutions to take back something from them to apply it in our daily lives. If any of you are keeping up even one of those resolutions on a daily basis, write to me. I would love to hear about it and I would applaud your courage and determination.

Many will not have gotten so far just because this post is “too long”, but for those of you have, I hope you hear from you sometime. Soon, preferably.

The ironical part is that I wanted to experiment with the fake title of this post just to see how many hits it would get. It’s almost bribery! JaagoRe.com is going to be on my case 😛

And, for those of you who’re still waiting for me to tell you about the 10 signs of love, check for pimples on your nose.

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11 comments

  1. Didn’t give in to the fake title 😛 One glance through for numbered paragraphs didn’t yield results, so thought would read up anyway.

    Totally related to the blink-and-you-miss style of wrapper dumping. Happens all the time. Good one, yet again. Somebody give me a subscription!

  2. I’ve got a theory that you can think about.
    that “Tolerance. Our greatest strength and our abysmal weakness”.

    Im sure you have heard that Indians are the most tolerant people in the world… Is that something we need to proud of ? Is it all right to just stand back and do nothing about anything.. is that tolerance?
    Sure, we abstain from “fighting”, but does that mean we shld tolerate being not nice? When do we say “This is the limit, things have got to change”?
    Does being indifferent keep us comfortable in our own little world?

    I’m just saying we all conform to a society that seems tolerate everything.. and only slowly are people are beginning to realize that.

  3. Sharu,

    Yes, I am yet another victim to your fake title :). No regrets indeed. This post was def worth it.

    My opinion on your post – It all ends up in “self-discipline”

    Good one 🙂

  4. good one sharu !! loved d msg n ur style of writing too 🙂
    n those who think of taking resolutions.. i think its NOT abt taking resolution to ourselves.. resolutions may work or may not,… its like telling ur mind “i should do this from now”… but itsabt being transformed as a person ! if u take a resolution , for eg say u wont litter on d roads, it is just a part.. even thou we take so many resolutions to do this n tat, we may end up doing only those wic we tot.. but wen we transform ourselves as a person who s so sensitive to d world around us then we do infinite things which makes us humans 🙂 so lets all be sensitive and reactive/ proactive !!! :)… (p.s- sensitive as in.. not d crying types but getting affected in a deeper level n doing something abt it)

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