Monthly Archives: January 2014

The last proposal

Last Wednesday, out of the blue, I got a buzz from Agastya, a friend of mine from junior college. He planned a trip to Bangalore and wanted to stay at our place for the weekend. I happily agreed. The evening he came, we went to a lounge. We had a lot of things to catch up on. After the formal things like the city and job life, the next obvious question was ‘’bhai bandi mili kya’’? He was blushing like crazy as I posed this question. I got the answer and asked him to elaborate on the same. It was a cute story. I asked him whether I could share the story on my blog and whether the girl would be fine with me sharing their story. He approved of the idea of sharing their story and assured me that she would be happy to read it. So, here is the tale of Agastya and Priya.

Agastya was an IITian and to add to that a mechanical engineer. So, with an extremely skewed ratio, the chances of him getting a girl during those 4 years were almost negligible. Again, after college he was supposed to join a firm in Chennai. With nearly no hopes, he packed his bags.

The first couple of weeks there were dull and monotonous for him. The unbearable heat, auto-rickshaw people with goddamn attitude and tiring search for a decent apartment left him exasperated. In a month or so, his situation improved slightly. He got an apartment, installed an air conditioner and enrolled for his company cab. Life, then felt, a bit relaxed. But still, that forever alone feeling was bothering him.

One day, he had a new cab-mate, Priya. She was tall, slim, had high cheekbones and wore a patiala and kurti. He liked her instantly. But striking a conversation wasn’t easy. She always had her earphones on whenever she sat in the cab. After two long weeks of waiting, he finally got a chance to talk to her. She forgot to carry her earphones that day. Once they started to chat, he realized that there were a lot of things to connect to. Both of them loved reading books. They would spend hours and hours discussing about a writer’s perspective on his novel. Their Sundays would be spent in Crosswords reading and finding new books. She had an excellent sense of humour. He would get trapped in her sarcasm and satire quite frequently.

A few months into all this, they were practically inseparable. Both of them knew that they were addicted to each other. Now, western civilization gave us a lot of things. One of them is the girl’s expectation from the boy to propose her in a unique way. Rarely do girls understand that due to our huge numbers, the probability of a unique proposal decreases drastically.

With no extra talent other than reading, Agastya started to find a cool way to propose her. He challenged himself and decided to propose her with two things he totally sucked at – singing and guitar. He picked up Enrique’s Hero, a song that was very close to his heart. For the next two weeks, he would lock himself in his room and practice the chords and the vocals. One fine day, when they were skyping, he told her that he would like to give her a surprise. He took out his guitar and started with the song. As soon as he finished the first stanza, the girl burst out laughing. She even suggested him to try his luck in stand-up comedy. He was dejected, dumbstruck and embarrassed. The moment was gone and he was devastated.

But he was not the kind who gave up easily. He started to find some other way. This time though, he knew his limits to try out new stuff. He decided to keep it simple with a rose and a short speech. But again, the expectation of the girl bothered him. Would a simple rose and a couplet do the trick? He thought hard to conjure something special, a thing that could stay with her for a longer period of time. He had his eureka moment when he remembered his school time hobby, origami. He decided to make a red rose using origami paper. After about 5 hours of effort and 3 failed attempts, he finally succeeded in crafting a beautiful rose.

The next day, he called her and asked her for a dinner date and gave her the venue detail. He went there a little early and gave a hundred bucks to the waiter to give them some more time after the desserts and play a slow romantic tune. She was totally unaware of this plan. During the course of the dinner, she was cracking jokes while he was nervously waiting for everything to get over. So, as soon as she was about to finish her dessert, with tu bin bataye from Rang de Basanti playing in the background, he got down on his knees, gave her the rose he had made for her and said these lines –

“You have been someone with whom I’ve enjoyed each and every moment. Deep down my heart, I know that if there is anyone with whom I would like to experience the journey of my life, it has to be with you.You’ve given me so many reasons to celebrate life. I would like to spend my life to try and make you feel the same way. I love you!”

He was nervous and stammered a couple of times. But somehow, he succeeded in completing the lines. Now, it was her turn to get smitten by the love and the affection showered by him. She cried for some time and smiled thereafter. She still didn’t say any word. His knees started to ache. Finally, he could not bear the pain any longer, he asked her to atleast reply. She was jolted back to reality and said a yes. He got up, jubilant and contented. They both hugged each other. He whispered to her “Thank you for relieving me from this proposal business. I am never proposing again in my life”.

P.S. : The valentine’s season is approaching. Best luck to all the Agaystya’s out there. Be unique! 🙂

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Of Aam Aadmi, their party and its practices

When Justice Katju said about a year back that more than 90% of the Indians are idiots, he was backfired from all circles. Every morning, I take the newspaper to learn about the happenings in and around the world. After reading news articles since the last few days, I am convinced to believe that a majority of Indian population is stupid. The kind of issues that are being discussed as the top news, be it a five bedroom house of a leader or his mode of transport or his continuous persistence on avoiding security, which have no effect whatsoever on the daily life of an average Delhite or an average Indian clearly supplements my hypothesis.

The Aam Aadmi party or the AAP was started with a mission, a great mission of eradicating corruption in the public services and thereby promising a better government. The aim of providing excellent governance shouldn’t be neglected at the cost of maintaining a simple life. For me as a citizen, it doesn’t matter if someone lives in a 5 BHK house or a lavish bungalow. I want an efficient mechanism to get my driving license, voter card in time and without bribe. I want a transparent policing of various schemes of the government.

Sarojini Naidu said it rightly that “It costs the nation a fortune to keep Gandhi living in poverty.”  The same would apply for the leaders of the AAP. It may inspire you to see Arvind Kejriwal travel in a metro instead of a car. But about 1700 police personnel were involved for smooth travel of Arvind Kejriwal and associates on his metro ride from Kaushambi to Ramlila Maidan. Kejriwal taking up all the praise from media and the great Indian middle class at the cost of so many extra police personnel than required is nothing but mismanagement of government resources.

I keep reiterating it in my friend circle and I repeat it here too, being a saint in politics should be an individual’s choice. There should be no need to enforce and publicize ones simplicity. By populating the culture of very simple living, there will be an increasing restriction on the number of people joining the movement. The AAP movement or for that matter, any political movement will flourish only when individuality is respected. For people to actually enter competitive politics, it should be looked upon as just another profession, where people join in, do their job, draw their salary, and maintain a decent standard of living.

The people in government sector are literally paid peanuts as compared to their corporate counterparts. To compensate a little for the small salaries, certain perks and privileges, like housing, transport is provided. My simple point is when one does the work assigned to him; why not use the salary and perks? And even if one does want to use the salary, why publicize the saintly deeds?

In a country where 600 million people are directly dependent on agriculture and there has been no job creation in that sector since the past few decades or so, where 40 percent of the people earn less than 50 rupees a day, where poverty and unemployment are accepted truths, it is the work of the government and not the way of life that will improve the standard of living of the people. A few months from today, it won’t matter if you wore plain shirts and traveled using public transport. The next time a person votes, it’ll be purely based on your delivery of services. To all the AAP ministers, your time is precious, stop being such a staunch Gandhian and focus all your energy on a better, accountable and efficient government.

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