Drop the struggle and dance with life!

Mar 31, 2010

From up-to-date to old, then onto ancient, and....

The world around me seems to be getting younger. I remember a time when I used to stand with my friends in the mall or a cafe and look at all the thirty somethings like they were doddering grand adults. I reveled in my youth and ignorance. I used sadly nod my head and agree with my friends saying 'That kid is a monster, it's his parent's fault'. And I also remember being tech-savvy, teaching my dad about internet and emails.

Now I see teenagers wincing and grimacing at me when I take a seat next to them at the movies with a young child. They look at me cautiously using a new wii or twitter. I can almost hear my youthful comments echoing from their unmoving mouths. When did this happen? Life seems to have sped up and passed me by, though each and every day of the past few years is accounted for.

And for some  reason, we always become 'old' when new technology shows up. And when the next one is discovered or invented, we would be further pushed into 'ancient'.

You don't believe me? IPhones and Twitter, it seems are not the latest. There is this Data-Matrix code to scan the small, square code on television programs with your phone camera. It will tell you all you need to know about the show. And I learnt this from a eight year old yesterday.

My grandfather was well educated and traveled internationally for business and trade. My dad out-did him with English fluency and motor-bikes.  I took my turn with internet and cell phones. My daughter has topped us all- by mastering Youtube and Nickjr at the budding age of two.

I wonder what my grandchildren would accomplish.

Mar 25, 2010

Which type are you?

Will Chicken be vegetarian soon? has struck a cord with almost everyone. I'm never the one to let an opportunity go by, so I thought, why not list the types of vegetarians? And trust me, there are many.

A.See No Evil: This type can be found not only behind the menus, but also in other areas of life. They generally avoid the fine print, a.k.a. the text that describes the ingredients. If they don't know that the French Onion soup they are enjoying has chicken broth, they will gladly slurp it. Ignorance, in this case, is sumptuous food.

B.Know Thy Neighborhood:  I-know-what-I-want-and-where-to-get-it types. They know all the restaurants and their menus inside and out. While one might ignorantly enjoy the 'veggie' Taco, they will look you with a smirk, sadly shake their heads and tell you that the beans (which makes the taco yummy) is actually made of beef broth.

C.vEGGetarian: I find that most ladies fall into this category. Though they also read their menus well, they have the incredible talent of reciting the ingredients list behind any given item. Cakes? Eggs! Jello? Gelatin! Mushrooms? Well, I know many of you love it, so I won't impart my sagacity on this.

D.Que Sara Sara: The most laid back of the lot. The preeminent factor here is that they are familiar with consumption of flesh - i) An ex-non-vegetarian; ii) Meat-eaters in the form of parent or friend in the background; or a distinct possibility iii)Down-to-earth attitude.

E.Of the veggie, Buy the veggie, Fuss the Veggie:They are least tolerant and actively preach vegetarianism, with a zeal of a Shivsenaite. Doesn't matter which geographical area they are from, they are like peas in the pod, with the sense of a lump of potato- you will recognize them by the retching noises and comically gruesome facial expressions they make whilst you devour your chicken.. And like the Indian democracy that is never for the people or of the people, these herbivorous forget that even meat eaters have feelings and are sensitive.

Sigh... time to share about my type. I'm combo D and A. My parents, like many other things, can't agree about whether to eat meat or not. So I grew up tolerant of both. And I enthusiastically ate the Stuffed Mushrooms on Olive Garden's menu... untill I realized they stuff it with clams!

Mar 17, 2010

To worry or not to worry, that is the question.

To worry, or not to worry: that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous problems,
Or to take arms against a sea of worries... 
There are days of the year when everything falls into place. And then there are days of the week where a trip to the library becomes an adventure, or at least an exploration. Not that I'm clumsy (ok, I'm a little bit) or lazy (I could give the energizer bunny a run for its money) or unplanned (I write lists!). It's simply how my life is.

Most days are so busy, I don't know how I get through them with my leftover sanity intact. And I recently realized that that's how I like it.

If you are too busy dealing with generously self-made messes, if there are myriad claimants on your time, and  you are busy as a cat on a hot tin roof with no way down, thank the Gods. That the best way to take your mind of irksome predicaments.

For example, when I'm having a bad day, I do something to make it worse - nothing substantial- just a lil' thing, like tight shoes or bunched up socks. Then I spend the rest of the day wiggling my toes and groaning about socks, which takes my mind off the problems.

That's one way to keep your mind off things. On the other hand, I have extra fingers! What didya think? I'd give you more thoughtful examples to read and ponder? Hmphf... Go think for yourself!

Ah, I can't keep quiet. I will tell you the other way. You have a few minutes and instead of peacefully resting, your wandering mind ambles towards the Field of Fertile Imagination to graze on new worries; While your common sense tries frantically to divert the wayward mind towards Peaceful Pastures. This battle, my friend, is lost even before it begins.

Try the diversion tactic II : There is ample fodder in the online world - For example, a random article reads- 'On average, 100 people choke to death on ballpoint pens every year'. Now, you can stare at a pen and try to figure out how that can happen till your duty calls. And please remember to draw the line at experimenting.

The point of this article? To keep my mind and fingers busy in the free-time that I have right now.

Mar 5, 2010

Crystallized Memories

I caught my daughter in my pantry with her chubby little hands in the sugar container, her face looking like a frosted cake in a sweet-inundated party.

 My 'mominess' went into overdrive. I was incensed at the amount of sugar consumed, irritated at the tiny twit, and wretched about the clean up of this mess.

As I lunged forward to halt further the disaster by spillage, a memory flashed into my mind about another pair of chubby little hands clutching a fist full of sugar and gorging it, like a starved kitten on a diet.

Mine, of course. I remember one of my favorite hideouts in the ancient, crumbling palatial home- A small, air-tight, cool room next to the kitchen where my Aaya (maternal grandmother)stored de-seeded tamarinds, salted limes, freshly ground sambhar powder and my personal favorite, dried mango strips.

And the sugar! Ah, the wonder of sparkling granules, slipping through my fingers like roughened sand, and the sweet, sweet taste, away from watchful eyes and scolding lips.

My mother would twist my ears and drag me out, yelling about stomach cramps and imparting her extensive knowledge about sugarcane plants growing outta stomach from the 'sugar-seeds'. Even the possibility of this weirdo plant sprouting leaves from my lips didn't daunt me.

Upon mother's request, my grandmother started carrying the key on her at all times to thwarted me. I started fervently wishing for the moments when she would suddenly stand in the middle of the room, clear her throat a couple of times, and announce to all and sundry that she was going to the rest room. Then she would add that she was afraid the keys would fall into oblivion, so she was leaving them on the armoire. I would wait with bated breath till I saw her amble away and then rush for the key to my personalized wonderland.

In the infallible ignorance of my youth, I thought she was daft- Did she think I was a baby who wouldn't understand her or be unable to reach the keys?

But she was one smart cookie. Thus I had my many moments of rebellion and numerous tastes of unadulterated fun...Err, sugar.

So, instead of admonishing my daughter, I took a step back, and let her make a memory of her childhood, to last a lifetime.

Mar 1, 2010

Mr.T's double Cs.

Mr.T scoring the double Cs, brought back some odious memories that I can reminisce a li'l tenderly - Since they are safely in the past.

My husband was an avid cricketeer (I made that word up) - He used to watch, play and dream cricket. I was proud in the elementary days of my marriage, of a sportsman husband: I had no conception of how time-consuming sports was at that time.

Back to cricket. So, here I was, in the aftermath of a glorious wedding, revelling in the fact that I'm actually in America.

Still in the time zone of being called a bride, I accompanied my husband to his practice session with the noble intention of supporting his interests.

In the spring-time early morning fog, blinking blearily and trying not to yawn, I was trying to process the soft sprouting grass and the incredible cold. For someone who has seen a 20*F winter, 55*F spring is 'warm'. For someone who landed here from sweltering Indian early summer, April is unbelievably cold. As Einstein said, it's the Theory of Relativity.

Add insult to injury, all the guys had stripped off their jackets and were walking around sweating after their warm up runs. They were also good-naturedly ignoring me belting out a stucco music with my chattering teeth, wrapped and bundled under an assortment of borrowed jackets. Did I mention it was cold?

Then the actual match. A total of 20 guys, they took turn keeping me boisterous company and playing on the field.

Now comes my dirty li'l secret - I have never in my previous unmarried part of life, seen a full cricket match. Sure, I would root for India towards the end of the match, I'll check score for my dad when he calls up from work and have crushes on handsome players. But I have never seen a match.

And sadly, my secret was out before the end of the second over.

There I was shaking and shivering; Swearing at my noble intentions about earning brownie points with brand new husband.

I couldn't figure out the game.

After one over, I knew the next ball goes to the one who was not batting. But instead of batsmen exchanging places, all the fielders and the bowler walked around and switched places! I watched this slack-jawed, ignoring the breeze trying to turn my teeth into frozen stalagmites. Eleven guys accommodating two men!

Next change of bowler, the same thing happened. It felt like a perfectly coordinated dance where the white costumed men were assigned spots and have to get there in a predetermined order. All of it performed to agonizingly slow music, I must add.

Five years and one child later, I still can't watch Mr.T's double Cs, even though I'm proud of him.

Update: The T is for Tendulkar and the C is for Centuries. He is an Indian Cricketer.