Tuesday, October 19, 2010


When you talk to people who know me really well, they will tell you that I can be a very stubborn person. When I was young I was really known for my "pidivadam" - I am not able to find a good English translation for that. I have been told that when I was 1 or 2, I would start crying in the middle of the night for no reason and would not stop crying till my aunt (who was 12 or 13 years old at that time) would dance for me. I have never displayed any propensity towards any form of dancing, and I think I just wanted to get what I wanted.

Growing up, I remember throwing tantrums for a lot of silly things. Once when I was about 10, Kwality Walls ice creams had just been introduced in India. I bought an ice cream on a stick which had 3 flavors, so that it looked a rainbow. I was really excited about the ice-cream and all through school I thought about eating that at home. When I came home, I noticed that my mother had forgotten to keep the ice-cream in the freezer and had kept in the regular portion of the fridge. So all the 3 flavors had melted and fused into one. Instead of realizing that this is spilled milk and asking for a new ice-cream, I threw a big tantrum about it and refused to talk to anyone or eat. I think my biggest grouse was that my mother had not admitted that she had kept it there by mistake and insisted that she didn't know the ice-cream would melt if kept in the refrigerator outside of the freezer. (Many people tell me I inherited the stubborn gene from my father, but I really think it's from my mother! :-)) I doubt if my parents or sister remember this (btw, her ice-cream was safe in the freezer for some reason, which made me angrier at that time), but I wonder why I didn't attempt to resolve the issue and asking my mother for a new icecream rather than be upset about the other one.

I think the reason is, I tend to plan a lot of things in my head and when things don't go exactly according to the plan I freak out since I don't have a Plan B all mapped out. And many times, my plans would go awry when my father was involved. My father does not remember things and almost never reaches any place in time. I remember telling him the PTA meeting at school is at 3pm when it would actually be at 4pm so that he would get there in time. And my father hates saying no to anything that my sister and I ask for. So he would promise us whatever we asked for. And he would always mean to follow through with the promise, but sometimes he would forget. Like once he promised to buy us bicycles. For a 10 year old, that's a huge deal. Me being me, expected to get the bicycle the day after he promised it. I did not get it. After waiting a couple of days, I took matters into my own hands and started my usual tantrum "I want to get the bicycle today!" and refused to talk to anyone and locked myself in my room. I remember my father coming up to try and talk to me, but I refused to relent. I did not get the cycle that day (coz those days, buying a cycle meant going to Parrys and it simply was not possible to do that in the evening). But that weekend we did go and get the Street Hawk cycle I wanted.

Though my father forgot a lot of things, he was far more understanding of my "Must do it NOW" attitude than my mother. She would just say "No" and go about her merry way. My father would really try to do or get what I wanted, but most of the things I wanted would involve going back in time to satisfy me. My sister threw tantrums too, but those would be doable, like she would ask for a huge bar of chocolate when we are out and though that was less from ideal, it was something that my parents could actually do. I know Karma will make sure when I have a kid, she/he would be just like me and ask for impossible things. I hope that I am able to have the same patience that my father had, towards my kids. (People who know my father personally would find it funny that I attribute a virtue like patience to him, but he has always been a different man when it came to his girls!)

I have read that girls subconsciously try to marry a man who is just like their father and I think I have completely succeeded in doing that. S could actually be my father's son. He has the same short fuse, the same generosity, the same attitude towards everything in life as my father. Sometimes when I talk to my mother about S, she is amazed at how much alike he is to my father. Like my father, he lacks in the "getting things done right-away" department. In the initial years of my relationship, we used to have a lot of arguments and fights about his lackadaisical attitude. I think my mother might have had the same arguments 25 years back with my father. We have now reached a implicit agreement, I try to add a buffer zone to my plans and he tries to actually do something rather than just wanting to do it at some point in time.

I guess there is no point to this post. It doesn't really go with the tone of my blog and seems more personal than my past posts and I might decide to pull this down later. But then like my sister says, it's just a few people who read my blog so I might just keep it. :-)

PS. The way I've written this post, my sister comes off as an angel. But believe me when I say I am the good one. :-) Her shenanigans will fill ten such posts. While I had just my father indulging me, she had my grandmother, aunt and uncle (who lived with us) twisted around her little finger.

Friday, October 15, 2010


For the past 3 weeks, my DVR has been dutifully recording episodes of "Outsourced" and I have been skipping watching these episodes even when I have absolutely nothing to watch. My first grouse against this show was that it was replacing my favorite "Parks and Recreation". The second and most important reason is that I am extremely sensitive to criticism (perceived or real) by people who know nothing about it. A year ago, a friend had suggested I read "Two States" by Chetan Bhagat and had insisted that I would enjoy. But about halfway through the book, I was seething with rage. I felt like Bhagat was making a lot of assumptions about Tam Brams and I found it impossible to finish the book. I didn't watch "Outsourced" since I figured it would make me angry and unpleasant and so I let those 3 episodes sit in my DVR and taunt me.

Last weekend, S & I spent the entire weekend rooted to the couch watching endless hours of TV. And then it happened, S refused to watch an old episode of Frasier that we've watched a a million times before and he wanted to watch some new episodes of Outsourced. I braced myself and started watching. And nothing. No anger, no wanting to throw a vase at the TV and I didn't even want to hunt down the phone number of the producers and yell at them on the phone! And I was even able to laugh at the jokes. Which is not to say that they have been kind or factual in portraying India. Which call center in India is located in a building in the midst of a market (with cows roaming around)? Hell the call center buildings in India are much nicer than the building that I currently work out of. And on the subject of cows roaming around, couldn't they have gotten a nice Indian cow rather than showing some fuzzy American cows? And when they want to show that we drink tender coconut water, we do not drill a hole into the coconut and sip out of a straw, we actually slice the top off. My biggest grouse have to be the way the actors talk though. They make the Indian actors say such American phrases in an Indian accent. As though the fake accent somehow makes it sound authentic. Why not just make the Indians use Indian phrases and slang instead? Or actually have an Indian writer, someone who has lived in India for at least a few years? I feel that someone like me could really help straighten things up in Outsourced, since the show has a lot of potential. So are you listening NBC? :-)

In other sitcom news, Running Wilde is in the danger of getting canceled! I am really really disappointed. I really liked the show and Will Arnett is terrific! I really thought that this could be a good replacement for Arrested Development (which is really the best show on TV ever!) Come everyone, we need good shows to stay on TV and which means y'all have to actually watch them.