Friday, February 29, 2008

Never Sleepless In Delhi

The old joke about adoption being the height of laziness does the rounds of my mind each time anyone talks about the modern-day panacea – the Viagra Pill. My meddling mind wanders to the Biblical injunction against the deadly sin. No, no, I am not referring here to the sin of Lust. What I am alluding to is another of the Seven Deadly Sins – that of Sloth. Or plain laziness, if you prefer a simpler term.

Unlike my illustrious grandfather (who industriously ran our family chemical industry and oversaw the working of our family farm till the day his 90-year-old body gave up the ghost), or his equally worthy son, my sire (who doubles up as our plumber-cum-carpenter-cum-electrician-cum-mechanic-cum-odd-jobman even at almost 65), I am an extremely lazy individual. Maybe it was just the caprice of Mother Nature, but by the time it was my turn, my ancestral legacy of industrious capacity had exhausted itself.

I sleep (my daily quota of ten hours) in the same jeans and tee shirt I wear to office, because it is too much of an effort to change into any shorts or pajamas at night. I prefer poached eggs for breakfast, because it is too much effort to make omelettes or to boil the eggs – you have to chop onions for the former, and remove the shells to eat the latter). In the old days before office lunches took care of the problem, I used to have Maggi for lunch and dinner. Not because I liked it (in fact I detested it), but because it is too much hard work cooking even the rudimentary khichdi. And as you must have guessed, anything that requires effort is an anathema to my sensitive soul.

Unlike me, Neel is no Accident of Nature. She is, as she claims, the culmination of centuries of effort (in avoiding any sort of effort) on the part of 17 generations of the honourable family. This pinnacle of sloth, the marvelous end product of impeccable evolution, has Rip Van Winkle as her revered idol. 

Neel claims that her four-hours-a-day afternoon siestas are not indicative of any deep-rooted idleness – they just reflect her fervent belief in the principle of conversation of energy. And why does she need to conserve her energy, you may well ask. With a gentle smile playing on her face, she will reply: so that she can prepare for her twelve-hour nightly sleep with great gusto!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Haiku Collection

Till a month or so back, all I knew about haiku was that it was the name of a brand of saris popular centuries ago. I do not even know if this brand still exists. But I recently had my senses ravaged by the beauty of this art form.

For those who are equally clueless, a haiku is a three line poem. The first line of a haiku has 5 syllables, the second line 7 syllables and the third line 5 syllables again. Thus a haiku is a three-line 17-syllable composition in the 5-7-5 format.

Explaining what a haiku is tough enough. Writing one is tougher still. Especially for some one who has no sense of awareness whether a word has two syllables or three syllables or seventeen for that matter.
But by far the toughest part is the actual poetry part of the haiku. A haiku is supposed to compress into a few beautiful words a very large expanse of meaning. For one who is totally untalented in poetry, attempting a haiku is nothing short of masochism.

Here are a few of my haikus. Or hokkus or hakka noodles, whatever you may choose to call my efforts.

Hate vegetables

All veg food is really sad
Why is it not meat?

That was really cool

When we fell down from a boat
Did not break any bones!

Brutal cold winter

Gives way to summer warm when
I light cigarette!

She wastes all her hours

Chatting with me all day long
On office bandwidth.

Pink tube of beauty

Fair and lovely I use now
To be less ugly.

Can real love blossom

Internet age and online