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Archive for November, 2010

I was reading the other day an article in the Supplement of an English daily on a subject that was quite new to me. It also showed how outdated one  becomes as one  grows in years!  This article was all about  a new ( read ‘modern’) trend in ‘baba rearing techniques’ which seems to be getting popular among the ‘career-babes’ in  Kochi  !

It is called, or so I am told , “Baby Bunching”!

The general idea , as per the author , is to get your quota of kids in a bunch of  two in the shortest possible period, to avoid certain ‘rearing up ‘hassles’…

Shucks, since when did the birth of your sons and daughters become a ‘hassle’?

It seems the trend now among newly married women  while planning their families  is to produce their first progeny in quick succession  like the  shots from a James Bond Beretta  … Phut…phut…!

That way you  get the chore of baby manufacturing behind you in a jiffy and   can attend to the more important things in life like your career !

And if the first delivery happens to be  a pair of twins, Lord be praised!

Their  approach looks something like this..

*  Meet a boy  in the office…

*  Maybe ‘live in’ for some time, if your outlook is ‘modern’ enough….

*  Satisfy yourself that the guy is workable , viable and pliable

*  Get the marriage proposed…

*  Get married …

*  Roll out first model after 10 months

*  Take a long breath and hold it for 30seconds…

*  Go for a second one  and flaunt it before the world,  9 months after the first…         (shorter if it is premature…)

*  Take  a bath afterwards with ‘fiama di Wills’

*  Apply face make-over ,

*  Comb the hair …

*  Hop into  your  ‘Swift’ …

*  Get back to your Desk …

*  And be done with the damn baby chore…!

Apparently the normal couples do not undertake  this drill, unless it happens by oversight 🙂 ! Only the sophisticated ones like the techies and the IT bunch go for it …

These ‘young things’  consider such a ‘ modus operandi ‘ an ‘economically, emotionally and practically viable option’  as the article puts it, without the hassles attending  a second  production programme launched after a long time gap!

To bring a human being into the world , they argue, is a ‘strenuous’ process , literally and figuratively speaking ! And it takes a lot of energy and labour ( pun intended ) . And to bring him or her up  to an manageable age is still more taxing and time consuming .

So, assume  you wait till the ‘product’ reaches the ‘critical mass’ ( say 5 years) before having a go at the second one. Then you have to go through all the ‘processes waits’  once again during these  5 years!  The  consequent second term of absence from the work desk  can spell virtual doom of your career because no CEO will ever allow you to vamoos for a second  prolonged ‘production sabbatical’ !

No Siree !

—————————————————————————————–

What? You want to take leave for Baby Bunching?

NO…!    Off Load it!

——————————————————————————————

So the ‘young things’  have now patented this new  method ! They now  choose to get it  off their chest…ahem… I mean the  womb…quite  ‘fast and furious’ . It reminds me of something like batch processing or very close to it! ‘ .

And the benefits when the job is done…?

The CEO is happy…

The babies are happy…

The  Mother is happy ,too, now that the fatory is closed….

And the Hubby? Well , he doesn’t count anyway, because  he will have his hands full with two babies taking part in a non-synchronised bawling jugal bandhi !

A win-win situation….!

Or is it?

In the olden days  after  a baby was born the next few years were the most enjoyable ones especially for the Mum…!

– Rearing it up , seeing it grow day by day…

– Watching it pass through the various milestones of its life …

– Enjoying its transformation from  a cuddlesome , cute bundle  into an ‘enfante terrible’ ..

Parents of old loved to savour those happy days for a long period of time  before thinking of setting up  shop for the launch of another  model….

All because for them their kids were more important than their career…

But gone are those days, it seems !

Now it is ‘baby bunching’ all the way!

Vive la baby crunching…oops!… baby bunching!

And ‘Amen!’ on that !

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The Sky Thugs…

A long time ago when I made my first journey by air way back in the 1970’s, I was quite new to this mode of travel, having been used to the trains and buses. So before taking off to the airports I held detailed discussions with my office colleagues as to the drill to be followed at the air port… down to how to ensure an upper berth in the aircraft 🙂

…When I landed in the airport I found no red-shirted porters fighting with each other ( and myself ), to carry my bags as I was used to in the railway stations. Nor were any vendors shouting at the top of their voice trying to entice the traveling public with their wares. And unlike at the railway stations there were plenty of trolleys which looked a lot better than their railway counterparts, all gleaming and lined up like a train…

I was thrilled because I didn’t have to get into any unpleasant arguments with porters regarding how much to pay for the privilege of getting my precious ‘breakables’ dropped and damaged beyond salvage!.

Finally after finishing what they called ‘checking in’, so different from the ‘barging in’ adopted in the railway stations, I waited in the departure lounge, wondering what further hurdles were going to be flung at me , in my progress towards Lord Aircraft.

Suddenly heads were turning and what appeared to be a ceremonial procession was moving into the departure lounge through the entry doors, led by a statuesque figure in a dark uniform , bearded, and ‘toppeed’ , dragging a suitcase behind him like a cave man hauling the squaw into his cave . The entourage comprised of a handful of less intimidating ‘topees’ , with a clutch of ‘uniformly’ dressed ‘belly buttons’ ( those days this variety did look appetising ) bringing up the rear. They were chatting to kingdom come among themselves with complete abandon!

My aquaintance of 30 minutes whispered into my left ear…

“The ‘Kappittan” and his flight crew have arrived…”

Many years have gone by since that encounter of the first kind . But now, when I see such a procession passing by, I heave a sigh of relief because the operative word is ‘arrived’…

There is a reason …

A few weeks ago there appeared a mind-blowing news item in an Indian English daily. According to this news report the ‘culinary dissatisfaction’ of an Air India Pilot caused a 7-hour delay in the take off of a flight to Chennai , leaving its passengers fuming with ire! The story goes thus…

The guy had apparently piloted a flight into Kochi at around 11.30am and was supposed to take off in another to Chennai around 2.15pm. After ‘thud-landing’ at the airport he and his entourage were ‘car-lifted’ to a nearby 5-starer a few minutes’ drive away for ‘Operation Belly-Filling’…Well, all went well till the ‘Kappittan’ took a close look at the menu and then all hell broke loose…

‘Where is ‘appam & prawns’? ’ Roared the flying thug…

Unfortunately ‘appam and prawns’ had gone off on a holiday from the Menu, to our Kappittan’s utter dismay! The entire hotel staff then went into a bind, wondering what else to offer to this ‘appam&  prawns freak…

They tried all the tricks in the book….

Chilli Chicken, Sir?

……………………………

Chicken Manchurian, Sir ?

………………………………

Butter chicken, Sir?

……………………….

Chicken Tikka Masala, Sir?

…………………………

Mutton Rogan Josh Sir ?

…………………………..

Mutton Curry, Sir ?

………

………

Cold water, SIR ?

H20 with CO2, SIR ?…

‘ No, No…No…! I want Appam & Prawns !’ , thundered the Sky-Thug…’Or else the Chennai Passengers will have a long walk on their hands!

It is a moot point whether any one can walk all the way from Kochi to Chennai on their hands…

Be that as it may, the hotel managed to locate some ‘Appam & Prawns’ lurking somewhere in their larder and dashed down to make a big show of serving it to the unhappy Kappittan…but, can you guess what?

The man said ,

‘No I don’t want it!’

And he did a quick follow up on that by saying he can’t fly the machine because he is now hungry!

The poor airline re-scheduled the flight to allow the Kappittan to cool down, planning to dangle again the plate of ‘Appam & Prawns’ helpfully under his nose later. But God Proposes and Kappittan disposes.. The Prawn Eater never turned up at the appointed hour to lug the plane away! Instead it was revealed that the guy was sitting in the airport restaurant refurbishing his stomach, and wolfing down whatever was available there like a demented demon…

So much so , when the time came to coax Kappittan into another take-off attempt, the guy couldn’t ‘take off” himself , claiming fatigue and stress- probably caused by all that eating…!

Finally after pleading with folded hands the Airline managed to bring about a change of heart in the erring flier !

However, this time the plane dug its foot in and refused to oblige….

The reason? Thankfully, it was not a food complaint….Struggling to meet the power needs of the aircraft which was idling on the tarmac all the while the ‘Kappittan propitiation routine’ was being enacted, its batteries had run out!

Oh, so you are the captain of that flight!

It took off after waiting for you for 2 days!

Now you can well appreciate why I prefer to call them Sky Thugs! The best of salaries, the best hotels to lay over , the best women to lay, the best of everything and the guy holds the plane and its large contingent of passengers to ransom over a petty plate of prawns! And three other connecting flights got their come-uppence because of our “Kantankerous Kaappittan’!

Many times I have wondered what is so special about this species … Special , that makes us bend over backwards to please them ?

It is never quite under stood.

If it is a case of the onerous burden of handling the safety of a 200-odd human contingent in mid air, what about the drivers of trains that carry 1000-plus on a long haul through hazardous territories and environments with much diluted luxuries, perks and pay? Are the responsibilities resting on their over-worked shoulders in any way less taxing than those of this pampered goons ?

Pray, someone tell me!

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Well folks ! I am back here…! Looks like my graphics have come back! Someone up there heard my cry of anguish alright! Lord be praised!

From  now on,  I will be blogging here…So watch out! I will be bringing here a couple of  blogs I wrote in the other site, along with their graphics, to  complete the saga …so see u soon!

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