Dazed and Confused
Gossip! I haven't heard anything!
In 2000, during a visit in Dallas, I was approached by a vehement Baptist at a Wal-Mart. "Son, do you know what it's like to burn in eternal inferno?" -- to a teenager, it vaguely means anything. As you may assume, I gave the "preacher man" a blank look and walked away.
However, if I were faced with the same question now, my answer would be a definite yes. Waiting for my 4pm class, in a lounge with no power, sweating profusely and hoping my deodorant doesn't give up; my easy on the eye classmate Rumpa is sitting right next to me.
Jhantu, an acquaintance who likes to think he is a “friend”, is flooding my left ear with updates on campus events -- how many new recruits are going to swarm whatever's left of the limited public space, which instructor has opted out from taking classes this semester, who is seeing whom and who among our known circles are being brutally double-crossed by their “dear ones”.
I know what the fair members of the opposite sex are thinking…doesn't this fall into the category of “gossip”? But aren't guys always giving girls a hard time for their fascination with gossip? Yes, we (men) do gossip; we just don't use that dreaded terminology. We like to think we're just participating in “conversation” and give women the impression that we're above it all.
“Dude, that guy looks so gaaayy,” goes Jhantu referring to one of the guys in my Macroeconomics class. That's like the basketball calling football 'round'. My inaudible response: “You should talk, fancy peacock, with your Rukh Rukh Khan-inspired glittery top/fatua/short kurta (whatever it is) that looks like you might've borrowed it from your sister and those salon-waxed eyebrows don't help either.”
Hmm... you are late by 20 minutes!!
But can I really blame my Bollywood-struck friend? With the barrage of “style icons” on TV and movies, helping develop a mass (questionable) taste, this is fast becoming the face of the new and “improved” face of the “metrosexual” male.
Gone are the good ol' days when my dad and the men in his generation would sport “vintage” (hand-me-down) clothes and still be at peace with themselves. Being fashionable in those days meant wearing bell-bottom pants, shirts with humungous collars, unbuttoned at the top, a few chest hair sticking out, complete with 'Elvis' shades. The reaction this image is bound to get from today's female fasionistas: “Eww!”
Today's women have options and they can pick or ditch their Jhantu, Pantu and Mintu whenever they want, leaving us (men) with no other choice but to use luxuries like toothpaste, deodorant, colognes and such. Jeans trousers have to dangle at your knees and shirts have to be three sizes smaller. With the building pressure among men to look good, gyms are mushrooming in every neighbourhood (how many of them are well-equipped, is beside the point). I blame the male models for this. Ok, I admit, I go to a gym too. Hey, it's a dog eat dog world and your dog better not look anorexic.
Moving on to more serious issues: my HRM term paper. Apparently my group and I are supposed to go to the head office of one of the leading telecom companies and talk to the HRM executive regarding our questionnaire for the paper. Also have two other term papers for my Finance and Marketing classes; deadline is three days from now. How on earth will I wrap these up, God only knows.
Midnight: I need inspirational music while I work on this mind boggling case study. Tough call but I think I'll go with Alanis Morissette. Not the “India thanking”, “nirvana achieving” Alanis. Call me old fashioned but I like my Canadian rock artistes dark, brooding and grungy. No, I don't have the “Holden Caulfield (The Catcher in the Rye) syndrome”, not a self-proclaimed sociopath. Just not into mind-numbingly sappy, sweet and insipid bubble gum pop or Spritny Beers or boy bands (insert laugh here).
'90s Alanis croons and I start focusing on the dilemmas faced by a foreign firm not related in anyway to my country…
I'm a sinner, I'm a saint
I do not feel ashamed
I'm your hell; I'm your dream
I'm nothing in between
You know, you wouldn't want it any other way…
[All views shared in the write up are strictly personal. Anyone offended in any way by this article should just chill]
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