Saturday, March 7, 2009


Here I was this Sunday morning blissfully sipping my chai, trying to recover from the excesses of yet another midnight party when, ‘What is it with you women?’ My normally mild mannered spouse suddenly snorted angrily from behind the newspaper, jolting me out of my stupor. ‘One day you run riot over your rights to red roses, sexy lingerie and chocolates. The next minute you’re suing the living daylights out of us claiming sexual harassment if we send you a naughty joke!’ What on earth is he raving on about? I thought to myself. By now he had gone quite red in the face. It was obvious that the chappie was getting hotter under his collar and was probably in the danger of exploding pretty soon with whatever was bothering him. And where was maid Laxmi bai when I needed her to butt in? I stole a peek at the headlines and froze. Oh no! There was my mug splattered across the page, with the headline shrieking ‘Women rule the roost! Men are just two hoots!’ it was the Women’s Day interview that I had so eagerly given a few days ago that had turned up to ruin my day. ‘This, this takes the cake’ he jabbed angrily at the paper, ‘Sonja says, we women can never have headaches, we have to perform, come what may…ha! That’s news!’ he guffawed. That did it!

I was done battling a household filled with maniacal maids, never-ending geriatric grouses, fancy food fetishes, crazed kids while trying to look like Victoria Beckham. I was more than outdone trying to be super woman, bionic girl and cat woman all rolled into the XX chromosome! All I ever wanted was a few hours to write that bestseller. Tears stung the back of my eyes; I stood up shakily, adjusted my crumpled pajamas as arrogantly as I could, flicked back my bed head and glared angrily at the love of my life. ‘You men are truly from Mars…all you think about is food, sex and yourself, in that precise order’ I hissed in my iciest voice, ‘there’s more to a relationship you Martians will never understand.!!’ when Laxmi Bai barged in and mercifully pulled me into the kitchen before the pair of us launched into a full blown battle of the sexes.
Two hours and many soothing cups of chai later, here’s my maid Laxmi bai’s tale that changed our world -

A father decides to share the secret to his long and happy marriage with his newly wed son. Son, remember to lay down the rules of the house right from day one. On our wedding night I took off my pants and asked your mom to wear them. I can’t fit into them she confessed. And you never will coz I wear the pants in this house I told your mom and look at us we’ve been happily married ever since. Impressed, the newly wed bloke takes off his pants on his wedding night, asks his wife to do get into them and rattles off the same dialogue.

The newly wed wife smiles, takes off her pants.

Get into them darling she murmurs seductively.

I can’t! The husband gasps.

She nods, that’s right and you never, ever will darling if you don’t change that attitude of yours….

Happy international Women’s Day to all you gorgeous men out there!!

Published in DNA Sunday Funny Bone (Women's Day) 8 March 2009

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


I have a confession to make.
Weekends have begun to have a rather queer effect on me these days. The very mention of doing dinner and wham! I break out into a cold sweat... Ever since the expressway zoomed into our Puneri lives, a new breed of party animals have insidiously invaded our addas and taken Partying to an AXN art form, packing in chills, thrills and spills once night falls. It all begins with a very glossy, glamorous, out-of-this-world invite that completely seduces your simple Puneri soul making you forget the nostalgia of informal potluck dinners. ‘What am I going to wear?’ my acne, hives and allergies swing into high drive as I begin agonizing about everything from my mousey hair to my callused toes. Of course hubby, kids and maid Laxmi bai can’t seem to understand why I’ve lost my marbles over a simple dinner invite and insist on adding their two bit advice that ranges from – ‘it’s only a dinner party’ to ‘mommy you look beautiful even in your pajamas’ to ‘Memsahib, eating out is making you fat!’.
But the seeds of desire have been sown...
And the small town guppy will do anything to swim with the big city sharks. ‘This is outrageous!’ laid back hubby sputters, misses his golf swing and messes up his handicap when he sees the bill I’ve just run up at the latest designer boutique. ‘Hai ram! What have you done to your hair?’ Laxmi bai screeches when I walk in looking like a golden retriever. ‘Arrey you are an Indian, memsahib not some phirang!’ she spits contemptuously!
Annoyed, I storm out to the malls to find that one elusive gift that will earn me yet another exclusive dinner invite in the days to come. By the evening, I’ve found an abstract that looks suitably abstracted enough to gather serious appreciation from my host. By 8pm, I look like a million dollars, having spent nearly as much; I take a deep breath and step forth to make my grand entry into the elite circle…
Two hours later at the fancy venue, the only ones who have witnessed my grand entry are the waiters and the bandwallahs… who are presently trying very desperately to keep us awake by plying us with wine and song and constantly assuring us that the hosts will turn up any minute. ‘Are you sure we’re at the right place? Did you read the time right? I’ve got to catch a flight tomorrow!’ By now its 11pm, my stilettos are killing me, my make up is fading fast, my tummy’s rumbling and my yawns are getting louder. ‘It’s time to leave’ my exasperated hubby hisses, when suddenly the party animals descend. There’s no way one can exit now. The glamour, the paparazzi, the scintillating talk, all keep you hooked till you stagger out at an unearthly hour, a changed person. ‘Memsahib, this is Indian Standard Time. Kuch time peh nahin hota! (Nothing is ever on time!) Just go to bed, wake up at midnight and head out!’ Laxmi bai decrees through a mouthful of paan.
So that’s my mantra for the next Pune party.
Hopefully, I’ll be wide awake and rocking this time round!
Published in DNA Funny Bone Sunday March 1 2009