Patrick Bergin Had It Right!

Well his character, of Martin something or the other in Sleeping With The Enemy, had it right. There’s no reason why things can’t be kept in a particular (I mean PROPER) way. Just no reason at all. Barring the fact that Bergin (lovely old stud that he is) did play the role of a psychopath, his insistence on a neat and tidy order to things is something I appreciate. And how!

When I thought about having my own place, and my own kitchen in particular, I knew the size would be a toss-up. I wasn’t going to get my studio apartment with a wee loft for the bed and an open kitchen. I did however want a kitchen a la country rustic and pretty with glass jars labelled with blackboard paint labels, all facing the same way so it’s easy to know if you’re reaching for the dill instead of the rosemary or parsley or the powdered cumin vs the powdered coriander. If only everything was a dead giveaway like chilly powder and turmeric, then we’d be gravy!

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But with more people using the kitchen and in their own ways, it was deemed best (with a lot of difficulty…look down to understand the extent of the difficulty and you’ll know what I mean) that we stick with plastic, Tupperware and other things which may not be aesthetic and terribly eco-friendly but more than earn their keep by being big-time user friendly.tantrum throwing a fit GIF

I also like the idea of hand towels and face towels being used for… well the hand and the face…DUH ! rather than a bigass beach towel being used to wipe a tiny portion of one’s body. I can blame my father for this bit of idiosyncrasy outright because that’s what he instilled in me..there’s a grammar to everything aka the madness aint madness if you can justify it. So I justified it BIG TIME- matching sets of hand towels, face towels and bath towels. Each one neatly hanging on the rod and the spares nicely rolled up next to a small dish filled with potpourri. And it is nice too…for all of 30 minutes. Then the dinos eat the potpourri or else they end up rummaging in it and for a bathroom that stocks up 2-3 towels of each size, there’s usually nothing around when you enter it.

The loves of your life go and use the bath towel to wipe their faces and horror of horrors…either leave it on the bed, on the back of a chair or just leave it to slink to the bathroom floor in an untidy crumple.

And so it goes…you become used to necessity over emotions at times. Until one day you find the nth damp towel on the ground when it just takes a teensy second to make sure it’s properly put back on the towel rod…and you have a mini eruption inside. And the  you remember Patrick Bergin’s steely eyed, cold-smiled demeanor towards Julia Robert’s handling of hand towels and think…this guy really knew what he was doing!!

And then you think back to HOW long it took you to get the offspring to wipe his hands and face at all, let alone not wipe them on his clothes or on you and you figure you have a few more years to go before you break out the full-fledged psycho mode. Or do you?..

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A Blog A Day- Day 2

I had hoped I’d have enough time and material to write again today. Lo and behold! The universe conspired to bring me a muse in the form of an annoying and kind of naive salesgirl who I’ve hexed from here to Kingdom come for her utter and complete lack of even a half-assed sales pitch and because she hurt my feelings…kind of.

See, when you’re carrying around extra weight, no one is more aware of it than you are. Partly because you’re living with it and also because people around you don’t let you forget it either.

Spouses make fat jokes, kid you about your big bites and even raise eyebrows if you so much as swallow a watermelon seed. Your offspring squeezes your lard each time he passes you by and thinks it fitting to tell you to eat less because you’re getting SO FAT!!

Note: the child in question is pretty young and no clue how close to doomsday he gets when he speaks to a woman about her weight. But then again the ‘foot-in-the-mouth-gene seems to be passed down from the paternal side ergo the kid didn’t really stand a chance.

Moving on, so a myriad of people make overweight people realize that they are in fact OVERWEIGHT; either knowingly or unknowingly.

Today’s incident was funny, sad and kind of made me want to throw a pie in the face of the girl who brought it all about. So it went like this- I accidentally knocked over a few packets of innerwear when I was managing a turn in the supermarket aisle while doing my mother-with-periscope-neck routine.

An eager beaver sales girl came running to help me pick them up thinking I was shopping for the said articles and took it upon herself to help me find stuff in my size instead of the smaller size I’d knocked over. Before I could tell her I didn’t need anything from that rack, she took a quick look at me and started off saying that the size I had was too small for me and she’d find the right one for me…and she did. Or so she thought. While my neck was still periscoping around for the offspring, this proactive child took out something which could have doubled up as the flag of an impoverished nation and waved it around to get my attention saying, “this will fit you!

I’m not ashamed to say I tore right into her saying that wasn’t my size at all and why didn’t she give help after it was asked for instead of bothering the customers for no good reason. And then I immediately felt bad, for this girl had a pout remarkably like what tots do when they’re denied another cookie, pool or t.v. time. So in sticking up for myself I had hurt her feelings. Ye Gods.

I went through the rest of my shopping in record time and MLM, sensing he should stop asking for every other piece of Hot wheels and chips, also came along rather demurely.

I guess I could have also rolled my eyes at the girl at the store and moved on but summers keep my temper brimming + there’s a perpetually chattering child along with his newfound love for IPL and Virat Kohli; tagging along more often than not. I was in no mood to be pleasant and embrace XXXL clothing because somebody didn’t get their eyes tested!!

In the words of the immortal Obelix-” I’m not fat. I’m just big boned, that’s all.’

My Temporal Lobe Hurts

I have a great memory for useless trivia. I have a pretty good memory for remembering everything my husband didn’t do but should have.

I also have a pretty strong recall for little things with the help of even vague-ish associative cues et al…but getting to the fag end of my 30s, my (declining) memory for numbers is killing me.

And the person causing bats in my belfry is none other than the offspring. As usual. Sighs.

We keep quite a few things under digital lock and key to keep him from giving into temptation and over indulging viz- iPad, t.v, Kindle, laptop etc but I’ll be damned if that isn’t coming back to bite me on the hieney.

With passwords for the phone, the Wi-Fi, the iPad, the Firestick, certain channels, it gets to a point sometimes when I need to unlock things, I sit with a blank look on my face, desperately searching in the memory banks for some kind of a clue to help me find the elusive #s; and no help is forthcoming. Totally a case of GIGO.

Earlier I had passwords, codes, credit card #s everything memorized and it wasn’t tough to recall them when needed and without too much prompting.

Now, my brain plays a Hot&Cold game with while I sift through data. Of course the process would be easier if I didn’t have a kid draped over my shoulder like a boa (imitating reptile and an accessory both), hissing in my ear, “Do you remember it Y-E-T??!!”

What would be best is if I could keep it unlocked and trust that agreements about t.v. time, play time on iPads were stuck to but that’s a bit unfair to expect from a kid when his parents are binge-watching Criminal Minds or Suits even though its ostensibly done without him being in the know.

But the brat knows us so well, when he sees the last played item on the watch list, he gives me a tsk-tsk look and takes the name of the person who’d have been watching the program and says, ” Someone was watching t.v. after I went to bed!”

I can’t begin to explain how amusing and confusing it is to be chastised by your child in a manner which he’s clearly picked up from you and then having to show your contrition even if you don’t feel the slightest bit contrite!

The things we do set an example for our kids. And while I try and set the aforementioned example, there’s a mini-me tapping his feet impatiently and saying,” Ahem….I’m waiting.”

Ye Gods!

Pet Peeves Maketh The Person

I almost wrote “maketh the man” and then reminded myself of gender neutrality (another pet peeve of mine) and changed it to “person”.

Anyone following my blog of late would have wondered if they’d landed on the same person’s site or not because I’ve gone slightly berserk with my template changes. And that’s the super-duper pet peeve I’m addressing today.  I NEED THINGS PERSONALIZED. And how! If it doesn’t vibe with me, I don’t get no satisfaction!

I think I can blame Livejournal for that. With icons for depicting different moods, being able to mention the place one is blogging from and the kind of music that one’s listening to at that time…they spoiled me. Of course they got in tons of spam as well and as a result it was ‘adios amigos’ but I miss a few of their blogging features.

I bring in lots of little (and often inconsequential) details to my blogs. To me- it adds to the ambiance. To another (read Red) it was often a WTF moment to know that I’d been listening to Waqt Ne Kiya Kya Hansi Sitam while ranting on a blog post. He always asked, “what’s the damn value add for me to know what you’re listening to if it’s not reflected in the words you’re writing?”

But we all have our quirks. Some of us more than others and some of us need to see something and make it our own. Whether it’s putting the world on hold while a new phone’s wallpaper and font is chosen or the blog’s template is changed for the nth time; it adds to a sense of satisfaction to see something and think, “there it is…that’s how we roll baby!”

Call it a quirk or a mini-disease, those of us who need to make things a part of our personality, need to have those things reflect who we are or what we’re thinking about, and get fidgety if we have to settle for something which is close but no cigar. Because damn it, we want the cigar!

Note: the author is *not* promoting smoking or any kind of tobacco usage. She however does have a thing (here we go again) for proverbs and liberally peppers her speech with them.

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Tech-Savvy Woes

I’ve written earlier about the advent of Alexa in our lives. Red was in the market for good quality speakers and was considering buying Sonos and then suddenly got his head turned by the cute lil dot that now talks to us in a STRONG American accent and frequently gets our song choices wrong because she doesn’t get us much. And that’s funny because the offspring has his own twangy accent that sounds kind of like Alexa and yet they don’t always communicate correctly.

Properly enunciated crisp diction rings her bells though. Take for example, MLM wanting to hear Ra.One’s Chhammak Chhallo. He yelled out into the general direction of Alexa, “AlexaplaymeChamakChalo” and pat came the reply, “I’m sorry. I am unable to understand you.” El Brato grumbled, “Stupid Alexa” and then yelled out to me, “Ayu…come and tell Alexa the song I want to hear. It’s not listening to me.”

And there I was, speaking to the dot, yet again, telling her to play Chhammak Challo, said with tight lips and no hint of any accent anywhere. And she popped up saying, “Here’s ChamakChalo from VishalShaker”. I swear there was no difference between her and MLM but someone must have a hearing problem somewhere so I’m still running interference for them both and waiting till he asks me to tell her to play ‘Rashke Qamar’. Last time he asked her to play the song she played Paula Abdul’s Rush Rush

For my troubles, I get to hear the dratted song on loop till my brains start to leak out of my ears. *rolls eyes*

Signing off!

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Music Vs. Melody

Getting MLM up in the mornings was usually a bit of a struggle. I tried all the methods my folks tried on me: stern wake-up calls after a point, taking the blanket away and even shaking him awake when nothing would seem to work. But because he’s made of sterner stuff and mainly because he cares two hoots about displeasing his parents; my flesh and blood would make like a snake and coil up good and proper and it was tough to get him to uncoil.

This child has always liked music. From sudden forays into Sufi-based stuff to Cars to jarring Bollywood beats he likes pretty much most things. They just need to be uptempo. For the past few months we’ve been waking him to music. Thanks to the advent of Alexa in our lives, the songs can be changed even if I’m not nearby and that helps because this kid goes through playlists like the Flash on steroids!

Anyhoo, after weeks and weeks of nothing but Bollywoody stuff my ears were begging for a change and I was determined to give it to them! A search for Indian raagas I hadn’t heard in a while got me to a beautiful arrangement of Raag Jaunpuri played on the Esraj by Pandit Ashesh Banerjee. And my ears felt blissful!

See, there’s a thin line between music and cacophony. One person’s music is another’s headache. Cacofonix has been a poster child for that for years. But not everything has a melody to it. Lots of notes can be strung together to make an arrangement that isn’t jarring but it doesn’t always uplift, soothe or invigorate. Now, I’m up there with most of the Bollywood song junkies here. Most songs I like and dance to at home are the stuff auto rickshaw drivers blare over their cheap, tinny, scratchy speakers. In fact, I heard my go-to song while travelling in an auto a few years ago and it never fails to disappoint or do the trick when I need to get out of a funk.

But a properly arranged and played melody liberates you…the gradually rising tempo, the adding of new, more complex notes and musical arrangements seem to mimic the cadence of your breathing, your exhilaration and finally your sense of joy or contentment. That’s not been happening with the daily dose of Swag Se Swagat and Kaala Chashma blaring on the speakers.

Still, once music enters your life, it never leaves. It may take twists and turns and you may find yourself in musical alleys of folk music, kiddy movie OSTs or even a Brahms lullaby but it never leaves.

Thank goodness.

Reruns

are fun! They are easy and uncomplicated.

You watch them because you know there’s fun, drama, tears, shock, eye-rolling moments all packed in.

And because they are reruns, you never really mind pausing them, running errands in between or putting it off for another day. You know Rachel gets off the plane. You know Meredith and Derek will have their drama together over 11 seasons before he exits. You know Gibbs will keep head-slapping Dinozzo till he leaves too. Beckett will eventually say yes to Castle and he’ll keep being an overgrown baby.

And yet it’s all fun. And along with it comes the music. Grey’s Anatomy has some really good music; usually softer tracks but chosen very aptly. Castle has some good ones as well. Got reacquainted with this song after years. And this one too both from Castle’s first season. The song my kid loves to dance to at ungodly hours is courtesy an episode of NCIS.

So basically you’ve got a twofer…a relook at old favorites or at the very least, decent recreation and good music. That’s a good deal in my book any day.