Not that its easy to find a gal you fancy at this juncture.Forget college years, you have even past the age where you could just send fraandship request you any random gal on orkut,”like” every gal’s status message and comment on every photo in FB or log in to yahoo chat rooms and ping a “cutegal008” with “asl (age sex location)?”. By now, you would have seen lot of gals come, pass by, get married and settle down; you would have analyzed and ruthlessly judged your female friends for all their good and bad points (sorry? :D) and then painstaking built a mental image of your perfect girl,carried it around everywhere mentally doing a “scan” on every gal you meet and always ending up with a “Pattern match failed”.Slowly,wisdom dawns upon you. The other day when I told my “criteria” to Rashmi, she was surprised “This is all? You are not able to find a gal with such simple criteria?” I said “Oh,these are my arranged marriage criteria. My love marriage criteria are different”.Go ahead and judge me all you want, I only speak the truth.
And all your married (ex-)friends are no inspiration either.Right after marriage, they suddenly disappear from the face of the earth and are zapped into a parallel universe where no single is allowed access.You can only access them through windows between the two universes,like facebook photo albums, gtalk and such. As much as you want to believe from their cute,smiling faces in the pics, you can’t help but think that is an elaborate racket going on here. Everyone including your parents,close friends,relatives,the TV,the government,Suresh Kalmadi(why not?) is involved in this racket and are trying their level best to push you into the proverbial well.You never know what goes on in the other universe.You finally ignore all the ominous signs,all the warnings and finally take the bait and then the truth dawns upon you.Then it will be your turn to pose and smile back from the windows and attract more hapless victims to the other side. Muhahaha, I’ve figured it all out now! But alas,I only very well know that at the moment of judgment, I am surely going to falter and take the same steps like so many have before me and fallen to ruin. And that is how the cookie crumbles ;).
If your ‘native place’ is North Karnataka(I won’t bother mentioning the exact place.Most Bangaloreans know N.Kar as one humongous flat piece of rock, with no boundaries) and you live in Hyderabad,I will be damned if you haven’t had some aspect of your life influenced by this masterpiece food item : the Mirchi Bajji(MB). It will suffice to say we are as passionate about Bajji as a Bengali is about a Rasgulla or a Mallu is about Parotta Egg Curry, probably more because the hotness quotient is more in a Mirchi bajji than the other two. Take my family for instance,myself included.Roughly speaking,the count of the mirchi bajjis we consumed during the 90’s was greater the cumulative sum total of all varieties of fruits dad got home during that period .Not that we ever complained. In fact, dad is still famous in the larger family circle for his Bajji fetish. All my elder cousins still never miss an opportunity to pull dad’s leg when they meet him – “Dattu kaka, nim makklige mirchi bajji tandilla(You didn’t get MB for your kids)?:D”.The proud gentleman that my father is,he would vehemently go on denying all the allegations and declare that he hasn’t been tempted by them in a long time now.
The Mirchi Bajji affair resurfaced during our house warming ceremony last week. Apparently, dad had ordered the cook to add the ‘delicacy’ as part of the lunch menu :D. At the last minute,some one found this out and politely suggested dad to change it something else,because having MB again is too boring.BTW, have any of you tried asking for sambar with your dosa at MTR? If yes, have you noticed the startled and offended looks the oldies sitting around you kept giving you for asking sambar? I tell you,never ask for sambar with dosa at MTR(or any of the popular breakfast joints in South B’lore). Coming back,my father’s antagonized facial expression was the same when asked to cancel the MB. So me and some relatives were reminiscing this with amusement while going to the new house (dad was not present with us), our hyper-talkative and mutliloquent driver who works at dad’s bank piped in without warning “Saar eats lots of bajjis at work”. He didn’t need much prodding to gain full dramatic flourish before continuing – ‘What do I tell? Saar keeps sending me to get MB for him. I tell him that he needs to stop now and I wont let him go down like this. But Saar says – “What can I do Narsimulu?(cough cough) I need these. I can’t carry on without the bajjis.(cough) Don’t argue too much.I’m doomed anyway. Just get me those damn things(cough cough cough)”.My heart bleeds for him. But I am helpless’ he concluded. When contacted, dad had this to say “Aa soolemaga hang andna (That fellow said this)? I’ll see him at the office”.
(Disclaimer: Everything below as narrated by my brother) Mom has her own mirchi bajji story. The other day as I was going out, she said she felt like having MB and asked me to get two of them. Just as she had the first bite and was going for second,she froze. Tears started rolling down from her eyes. I was puzzled “Mummy,enaytu”? Mom went full retro. “Beta,this incident happened 22 years ago. You were still a baby then.We were traveling somewhere and the train stopped at a station.Your dad got hot MB and passed them to me from the train window.(Maybe all this started on that historic day). Nothing has tasted the same since then. I’ve been looking for the same out-of-this-world taste for the last 22 years now, and without success.Today,finally, my quest has ended with these bajjis”.I think she stopped short of saying ,”This is why you were brought into this world,my son. This was the purpose of your life. To get me Mirchi bajjis”.Sigh.
Another unrelated but funny incident. My dad and I were looking for an address in some locality in Hyderabad. Dad spotted a man getting into a swanky car,went to him and casually inquired about the address we were looking for. The guy totally panicked,frantically mumbled something and tried to get away quickly. Meanwhile, I walked up to him and shook his hand.He smiled back pleasantly and sped off in his car. Puzzled,dad asked, “That guy didn’t even tell the address properly. Why did you shake his hand and why did he smile at you? Do you know him?” I was hysterical with laughter by then.Struggling to control my laughter, I told him “Pappa, that’s Shekhar Kammula,director of acclaimed movies like Anand, Happy Days and recently, Leader. You totally scared the poor guy”. Dad was surprised, “Oh Happy Days director-aa?” and then,”So why is he roaming on the roads like this? Is no one giving him work these days?”
P.S: I suddenly wonder what’ll happen if one day Dad somehow stumbles across my blog and goes through it? Have I written anything that he would be proud of? Proabaly not. I will be extra careful :D
I am pining.I am pining my dinners away.The sambar masala which mom packed (lets call it masala-X for easy readability) me for Diwali is nowhere to be seen. No ordinary powder this one. One look at it and you would be reminded of gunpowder. Bend down a little and smell it and the spicy flavor of it intoxicates . Just don’t get your nose too close,for all you’ll get is fits of sneezing and coughing. You have been warned.You might not convinced yet.Let me compare this to the popular MTR Sambar masala. The most efficient way of putting it is this :
That sums it up (I knew my calculus would be put to good use someday). Few of us might argue there is no way one can integrate MTR masala from 0 to e powered x to get some mom’s sambar masala. If that’s the case,you are cordially invited to a Sunday afternoon sambar-rice lunch to my place over which I will prove to you beyond doubt the above equation. Fine, we shall take a more real-life example for the present, say traffic in Hyderabad. Another mathematical equation comes handy again :
Masala-X : MTR’s : : Hyderabad city traffic : Galli traffic in Ejipura
An inquisitive mind (probably one of those who had a problem with the integral)or a Bangalore loyalist would raise a question as to why Hyderabad was quoted and not Bangalore, although I daresay this matter is none to be proud of. I am afraid I will have digress further assuming that my intelligent reader is capable enough to keep track of the narrative.Lets take a simple case of a pedestrian crossing the road in Himayatnagar, a fairly upmarket locality in Hyderabad. Once you reach the middle of the road, 6 out of 10 times you find yourself dead straight in line with an adrenaline charged biker zooming at an inestimable speed, usually returning from a telugu movie at a theatre at RTC X-Roads where he would have seen the super hero (there are only superheroes in telugu movies) beat the crap out of the 50 people surrounding him in an epic climax. At that instant as you look into his eyes, you know you are done for. And at that very instant,your entire life will unfold in front of your eyes in a series of snapshots, rewinding fast from frame to frame. Then blank.Peace.….A deafening noise. The bike has zoomed past and you are standing like a dead trunk in the middle of the road,heart in your mouth You have been warned. Again.
Now that we have effectively described the credentials of this masala powder, I have to clarify one more thing. Granny will be stirring in her grave hearing me address the legendary Masala-X as mom’s, for it was her patented recipe. As a kid, when I visited grandma’s place for summer holidays, I would get down the auto and run straight to he kitchen shouting “Ajjjjji, masale haaki huli madidiii?”(Grandma,have you prepared the sambar adding the masala?) Grandma would walk to me at a slow pace, chuckling, peck me on my mouth (Why do grannys do that!?) and then open the container to proudly display the brownish-red sambar, its aroma filling the entire kitchen.And then we cousins would have the rice and sambar for dinner,with dollops of ghee to add, sometimes in the verandah by moonlight. My summer holidays were made of such memories :). Ajjis and Ajjas have gone, but their legacy remains.
So what now? I have lost all hopes of finding masala-X. And so the X-factor wil be missing in my dinner till I go home next time. Until then, I will just have to make do with the e^x times differentiated version from the MTRs.
Its been a week now. I have been having sleepless early mornings because of a Rooster. Er… don’t get me wrong here. A Rooster-crowing,to be precise.Yessiree, I hear early morning cock-crowing,here,in Bangalore.Opposite house to mine. Nostalgic,u say? Well,it has been a real pain in the arse to me(And you can guess the magnitude of my plight if I am using expletives without **). The first time it happened, I was rudely awakened wondering who is the moron playing Himesh songs at 5 in the morning! I know you can’t call a cock-crowing nasal by any stretch of imagination. Actually, I think its as throaty as it can get. Still, one thing very much common between the two (Mr.Rooster & Himesh, if we have meandered too much) is the stress on the last syllable (Ooooooooooooooo!). Oh, just realized there’s more. The cap!!! Anyways, Himesh Bhai has been lying low for a while now & there might be a probability this piece might act as a catalyst to wake him up from his reverie(Yeah,right :P). I shall not digress further.
So,where were we? Ah,now Mr.Rooster is as persistent as,say,my mom when she bugs me to get the tiffin box in which she packed my dinner on the journey back from HYD to Bangalore(“It’ll be nice if you can find the spoon too”). I needed to take urgent measures for the problem. Started listening to ‘Restful Sleep‘(audiobook) by Deepak Chopra. Such a waste. The guy talks only about Ayurveda,the body forms vata,pitta,bata (:D) or something to that effect. Never does he mention a certain Rooster and what needs to be done .Not even a word.For now,I have resigned to my fate. Sleep seems as distant and as impossible as an Akki movie winning the Oscar. Since we all know ultimately what fate awaits the cock (:(), I cannot be held guilty for wishing my opposite door gentlemen sing “Tandoori ‘chicken’ nights” (hey! Himesh song!) sooner than later. If its of any solace to anyone, I’ll say this: RIP,Mr.Rooster.
Here is a pic, taken from the balcony-like area beyond the front door(I should’ve taken another pic to show you the guys the relative location. This needed some zooming).
As you can see, there’s a Ms.Hen too, in the background. I am 100% sure it is also involved in contributing to my misery. Only, the MCP that I am, Mr.Rooster grabbed ‘meat’ier part ;)
P.S: Ejipura is where I reside
P.P.S: I like some of HR songs,actually
P.P.P.S : Gaara is back in Naruto manga!!! :))