Nov 29, 2005

Shades of Similarity…

Buildings mushroom overnight in the IT capital of India. One such edifice was taking shape in the street where I live. The construction activity was in full swing, contract laborers being hired from the neighboring border villages. Temporary settlements had sprung up for accommodating these people and their families. Most of them speak a dialect of my mother tongue, Tamil, coming from the villages near Hosur, on the Karnataka – Tamil Nadu state border. Yearning to hear the twang of Tamil isn’t something strange when you live amidst people who either don’t speak the language or prefer the Anglican medium of the corporate world to express themselves. I generally satiate my hunger for my mother tongue by gaping at those who happen to speak it. Listening to a stray conversation in your mother tongue in an alien land, can be an exhilarating experience. That being a separate issue let me get to the point. These new tenements and their inhabitants presently revealed some very intriguing ironies. I have tried putting them down in a certain format...

1. Enjoy the great outdoors.. Barbeque bonanza.. Cook your cuisine in the open…

Read all this in one of the hoardings on the infamous Hosur road, forced to memorize them as a pastime in the no-one-can-escape-me jams. A nice way to plan a weekend to savor the world outside your cubicle...

That very evening I chanced upon my lingual compatriots cooking a delicious smelling kozhambu in an open pan on the streets, the scent of the boiling broth wafting through the chilly evening air, a heavenly delight... Urchins laying a dinner table, under the star spangled firmament... A teenage twosome having a moon light dinner… Who needs candle light to romanticize the air when the biggest candle in the Universe shines upon your loved one’s head...

2. Streak your hair, Great hair color for that great new look... Do away with dull boring black hair…

Had the kismet of following a hip young woman with copper streaked straight hair walking like a trapeze artist atop a high heeled shoe.. Another identical head bobs up and down beside her, with almost the same coloration.. Probably hued bronze instead of copper… Pestering our red riding hood, sorry red riding head, to adorn her locks with a few fragrant jasmines… Losing interest in the peddling and the rebuttals, I fixed my attention on the craniums of the two females.. The shorter form fascinated me, achieving the same hairdo at a lesser price.., in fact no price at all… it’s the lack of funds for hair care products, vis-√†-vis a decent shampoo and some ounces of coconut oil that worked the magic… Hair dressers of the world should marvel at this master stroke woven by scarcity!!..

3. Work out.. Sweat your self out at the Gym.. For those great muscles.. Flex your biceps for the chicks to flock…

I have this habit of looking at my feet trying to count the cells of the cuticles when I walk alone on the street.. On one such occasion, I happened to look up… Was confronted with sight of three tall, dark well built men, in overalls smeared with distemper..

Was tempted to wolf whistle when they rolled up their sleeves to pick up a ladder…
Man, these guys get paid for working out!! Lucky souls!!.. Don’t have to dish out the bucks from their wallet for sweating their hearts out.. Don’t have to schedule and re-schedule work to fit the gym slot in… Glorious muscles are all in a day’s work for these fellas… What a perk to enjoy with your job…


Disclaimer:
My attempt at putting forth the paradox may have been slightly blunt and out of punch, because right now I am kind of grappling with a perennially pre-occupied mind.. Nevertheless as long as the ironies find their target audience, it is mission accomplished for me.

7 comments:

johnny boy said...

Hey there
I get your paradox perfectly well :) The 'cool' things that people-who-can-afford-it do, are actually done by everyone in their own little ways :) Jus that the level is not the same, and the amount of attention it gets, is certainly not the same... However, for the persons concerned, the levels of fun in doing them - is just the same :)
Lovely post. Must say, you write well..
"when the biggest candle in the Universe shines upon your loved one’s head..." -> awesome line.

R.Subramanian said...

>>I generally satiate my hunger for my mother tongue by gaping at those who happen to speak it.

enna show kaatariya...nee entha range la tamil pesare nu enakku theriyum.... ozhunga eluthu kooti padikka kooda theriyaathu....... english peter vittutu iruppae.... nee solriya

>> Was tempted to wolf whistle

velai seiyya blore anupicha nee kattidathila velai paarkara pasangala sight adichittu irukkiya :p .. vitta duet paatelam paaduve polirukku

and as with the previous post, the flow is nice and the usage of words is apt and good..nice post... but solla vantha vishayatha nee firm ah solale..johnny boy maathiri kashtapattu kandu pidikanum moral of the story enna nu

The Soliloquist said...

@ johnny boy: yeah true.. there are certainn things u notice when u stop indulging in yourself and look around jus wanted to write them down.
@rsu: its something i wanted to write, things i noticed, not trying to drive home any point.. jus pointing out a few things like kids in a carnival, drawing attention to everything they notice without any rhyme or reason..

Vishnu Prahalad N said...

another good observation on the "Great Divide" in India. a gulf between the rich and the poor is a slimy slithery snake and it wont be long before it stings you with all its venom.
some effects of this snake is the waylaying and robbery and stuff. good that in India, they are not killing people but just plundering from them, unlike in US where they kill you for ur money. nevertheless, the divide needs to be narrowed down....

Ulagalandha Perumal Dharanipathy said...

Sometimes i feel communism is not wrong!!! The true form of communism has never been implemented anywhere in the world so far anywhere..India is the best place and this is the best time to do it..
To perish this pernicious divide, we need a powerfull government. Democracy has been a magnanimous failure so far.

Karthigeyan said...

/:)
- Karthigeyan (a.k.a VK)

johnny boy said...

@r.subramanian -> lol.. Enna panrathu, makkal rombho yosikka vikaraangal :)))