Saturday, July 26, 2008


Paltu is my daughter's dog. No, its not a real one but a stuffed toy. And they share a Calvin n Hobbes relationship. For all the eight and a half months that I carried her, I strictly refrained from reading anything remotely related to Calvin. Not because I have already read it all, Calvin fans would agree you can never have enough of the little imp and his stuffed tiger. He enthralls, amuses, surprises, delights, at times even disgusts you, but you just can't help loving him. I avoided Calvin because I did not want my unborn baby to be influenced by him. Everybody enjoys little naughty kids but the parents, and I shiver at the thought of having an over-the-board kid like him. My efforts, however have not paid off. Already, my little one has started doing things that smell perilously of Calvin, the most prominent being her love and excessive attachment to this stuffed dog, Paltu. Now, I am not saying it is weird or anything other than normal. We all have imaginary friends as kids and often discover them in our toys. She carries Paltu everywhere and even sleeps with it. Fine. She talks to it, or shall I say 'him' in long sentences, scolds him by pulling his ears and pampers him by hugging him close or at times by giving little pecks on his nose. Fine again. Now listen to this. She demands that her nanny put baby cream all over Paltu's cloth-n-fur body, and then dress him up just like Her Highness after every bath that 'she' takes. Also, Paltu has to be seated on a high chair and fed as much as she is. Poor thing, he now has turmeric stains all over his mouth and nose. And then, if being smothered with baby cream and eating rice-dal was not enough, Paltu now sports my contact lenses too. The moment my little lady got hold of the discarded lenses, she immediately went and put them in his eyes. Hmmm.. looks like I am not the only one myopic in this household...

Will you step into my 'parlour'..

I hate going to the parlour. Any girl will get it in the first go, but for the benefit of the male readers who by now, must be already wondering why I hate icecreams or video games, I am talking about 'beauty parlours'. The term itself sounds kinda weird to me, as some of the other classic terms associated with the business and hence, acknowledged and accepted by ladies nationwide. What sense does 'eyebrow' make to you? Or better still, 'underarms'? They strike terror in my heart... Nazi's treated Jews better than these parlour ladies treat their clientele.
I enter the parlour with a heart beating really hard, and they greet me with the kindest smile. But these angels turn into draculas the moment they get down to business, eager to sink their greedy teeth in my 'uncared for' skin. The best part is that they always succeed in persuading me into getting done more than what I would have planned and been prepared for. I would just go to get my eyebrows tidied, and return with the whole body waxed. Or if I go for a cleanup, I would get coerced into a 7 course, one-and-a-half hour long elaborate facial. I am not sure about the glow that they promise would come in a couple of days, but it surely leaves me bored to death. Still, I must admit I do feel lighter, with all the excess hair, dead skin, dirt and grime with black/white/grey-heads gone, along with some real hard cash. The irony of the whole thing is that all of these will come back real quick but the money won't, sigh! The trick is simple yet highly effective. While I get my eyebrows done, one of the girls there would comment on how dull my skin looks, and suggest me some facial. And during the facial, somebody would ask me if I would want to get my body hair removed, since it is so overgrown. I would reluctantly agree, just to cover up for my embarassment. Besides, it is not just wasting time or parting with money that hurts me so much, there is some solid physical torture involved. Plucking one hair at a time from the eyebrow is the most gruesome form of torture. Pouring hot wax all over you, and then plucking bunches of hair in multiple jerky efforts stands next. Infact I have heard of similar technique used with prisoners of war where their hair and nails are plucked ruthlessly to force military secrets out of them. At times like this, I try to recall all the not-so-good things that I have ever done, and suffer in silence hoping God would count it against my sins. Anyways, even as I write this, I am sure I need to visit the parlour soon. And it might be as early as tomorrow itself. So long..

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Engineering begins early..

I have been awfully busy and slightly lazy the whole of last and current month. Not writing any new posts, I couldn't even publish an already completed one. No, posting doesn't take much time but I want to put a picture with that post like this one, and that has to be trasferred from my camera to the computer, and subsequently to the blog. Quite some work, isn't it? But I would really like to share this little incident that left me thoroughly amused. My daughter has this little, rather noisy toy, with a bear pedalling down having a drum in the front, which has several tiny aircrafts that revolve around an axis, simultaneously dipping and rising too. What I could make out of this is that the bear is vending airplanes on an icecream trolley kinda thing, and singing a little too loudly to attract customers. Sounds terribly weird, ain't? But my little lady loves it. And though the bear is quite capable of travelling on a pair of duracells, she likes to carry it around in her arms, dropping it often in the process. One such fall broke one of its legs, and the drum in the front couldn't rotate anymore, creating an irritating mechanical noise in the effort. This quickly got on my nerves, and I pestered my husband out of his couch to fix it. Since it had to do with daughter dearest, he promptly swung into action armed with his tool box. Now, my husband has this truly remarkable quality of treating the smallest of mechanical chores with utmost importance and he took to fixing this toy with lot of seriousness and zest. An engineer working on NASA's to-be-launched-asap-spacecraft cannot work with more precision and concentration. He carefully removed the intact leg, studied the mechanism there and then started on the broken one. After what seemed like an eternity, he finally got up putting everything together, and declared positively--'This cannot be done!'
Me: Why?
Husband: Mechanical + technical + laws of physics == gibberish.
Me: There should be some way to do it.
Husband: More gibberish.
Me: Why don't you try putting some glue, or probably tape?
Husband: Won't help. (Supplementary bullshit.)
Me: What if I skim the trash and get you the broken leg back?
Husband: Grrrrrrrrrrrr.......#$^%&*@#$... Do it yourself!
Me: !!! (rush back to the kitchen)

By this time, the baby had lost all patience, and she walked off with her toy to another room. And seeing the way she was forcefully twisting the drum trying to make it rotate, I thought the bear is on its way to eternity..

I didn't see the toy again till the following evening when my husband suddenly remarked with a twinkle in his eye and perceptible distrust in his voice, 'She has fixed it!'. The drum was rotating perfectly. We continued to stare at the toy, the bear was pedalling down merrily, singing loudly and following suit with a huge grin was our budding engineer.