Thursday, March 11, 2010

Ancient, Orthodox, Walker...

I sometimes wonder if I belong to a different time and age… And it’s not just my creaking bones that make me wonder that. There are a lot of things around me that continue to reinforce my belief. Let’s take fashion, for instance…

I identify with a school of thought where women look like women and men look like men. Flip through any fashion channel or magazine now, and all you will find is women with the structure of underfed pre-teen boys and men, like they’ve just been let off a concentration camp. And they both look like they’ve lost the will to live. Seriously! Is that what passes off as sex appeal these days?

And why would any legally sane person EVER want to be a size zero? What does that mean anyways? To the best of my reasoning, it could mean the size of the wearer’s brain! Why would anyone actually pay money to look anorexic? And what kind of demented folks prefer such people? Or has mutation given the new generation some kind of convex vision? Or worse – has age given me concave vision?

Whatever be the reason, there goes my dreams of becoming a supermodel! Not that it will, in anyway, come in the way of my world-domination ambitions by becoming a God-man, but still… We all like a little fan following, don’t we?

But there are still a few things that, in my mind are divided by gender. I hope this table illustrates two categories of what (most people in) my generation identify with the sexes…





All cosmetics


After shave, Cologne, Vaseline, Talcum powder


Lipstick, Foundation, Rouge…

NOT Masculine


Skirts, blouses, tank-tops, things, saris, capris, hot pants, gowns, dresses…

Feminine (Actually women look good in anything)

Pants, shirts, tees, jeans, kurtas

Masculine (refer above too)

Men should realize that UNLIKE women, they WILL look funny wearing anything out of the above table (let’s keep regional preferences like dhotis, loincloths, etc. out of this). And that there is a fine line that divides the metrosexuals from the effeminate. I am not homophobic, but the trend of men doing their eyebrows and stuff unsettles me… And so do men or women with a lack of personal hygiene… I hope I’m making sense to you, because sometimes, I can’t understand myself. Especially in such cases. I try and simplify it to myself by saying that a Man should look like a Man and a Woman should look like a Woman.

And yes, what started this was the sight of a guy in a car, doing make-up in the morning traffic of Mumbai. Honestly, I failed to decide then – which was more pathetic.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Scheduled Role Reversal...

I pride myself on being able to watch movies the wrench the hearts out of the heartless without shedding a single tear. I am so emotionally detached watching TV, that I make fun of my wife/mother/sister/friend if they even as much as sigh during an emotional patch…

As a kid, my Mom’s biggest threat used to be that one day, I will become like those I make fun of. I now realize that the day is fast approaching. Again!

In a strange role-reversal of sorts, I used to be the one who used to stare at the TV, teary-eyed and heartbroken, while my wife used to exact her revenge by making fun of my heroes! And I’m afraid, the time is at hand again…

The 2010 sporting season for me begins on March 12 with the IPL. It carries on till the end of November with the football world cup and Formula 1. And I’m going to be an emotional wreck this year!

It will start with IPL3 where my team, the Deccan Chargers hope to defend their title from last year. Year one saw them at the bottom of the table. At that time, there were only TWO DC fans in the whole world – Pratibha and I. While the whole world mocked us, we held our heads high. When IPL2 started, the same non-believers came back to hound us, and to them I now say- “Who’s your daddy NOW?”.

It was easier last year since any position other than the last was an improvement, and even if they came last, we could claim to be consistent. Not so this year… I’m going to stay off fat and protein.

Same with the Azzuri. My favorite team since I started following the world cup in Mexico ’86. The Italians had the X-factor. I was obviously too young to realize that then, I supported them because their flag was the closest to India’s. But my support never wavered and my love for the Azzuri survived the Maradona, and Ronaldo eras. While my friends dreamed about Bollywood, I used to idolize Toto, Baggio, Maldini, Del Piero, Cannavarro, and the likes. Not that I disliked other teams, I would always have a step team to support. But my heart always beat with the Azzuri…

And then, the most painful of my sporting indulgences – Formula 1. My affair with the sport began in 1998, the Mika Hakkinen era. The battles between Mika and Michael Schumacher kept the season interesting. Despite losing the championship that season, I started favoring Ferrari. I was in awe of the scarlet car and everything associated with it, including Schumi.

1999 was disappointing after Michael’s Silverstone accident and thereafter missing five (or was it six) races… But he came back in Malaysia and how! He virtually held up the entire race for Eddie Irvine, who finished first and Ferrari were the champs that year. They went on to dominate the next six years, which honestly were not as exciting with no one to challenge Schumi.

A lot has happened since then, Force India entered F1 in 2008 and took a bite out of my loyalty to Ferrari. Schumi retired, Ferrari became champs again… But this year, things are not so pleasant for me. Schumacher makes a comeback and races for team Mercedes. Alonso and Massa pilot the Ferrari, Karun Chandok becomes the second Indian F1 driver…

Things are not going to be easy this time either…