Sunday, 11 July 2010


I was silent for so long
That I forgot my speech
I have so much to say now
That words fail me
Let's begin from the very beginning
And go back to the end
Start afresh from anonymity
To freedom once again

I did the colossal mistake of addressing a fellow netizen by the word 'kid'. He turned out to be a strapping boy of 18 brimming with the pride of new found adulthood. Chaffing was inevitable. He snubbed me back, a little arrogantly, that the word sounded strange to him and should be avoided at all cost. I immediately apologized and replaced the "kid" with a 'ji' suffixed to his name. And that somehow assuaged his hurt ego.

It was a "minor skirmish" which made me realize, rather forcefully, the quintessential difference between the two genders. Had it been my female counterpart, the word would have aroused coy sentiments even if she were a doddering octogenarian. No exaggeration there!

A true incident, gleefully recounted by my sister to many, goes like this. Her colleague's mother-in-law, teetering on the edge of life and death. The young doctor attending her placed the stethoscope on her scrawny, heaving, gasping chest and said politely ,"Mataji! please try and take a deep breath!" Pat came the reply, "Mujhe maataji mat kaho naa, abhi meri umr hi kya hai!"(Don't call me mother. I am not that old).

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