Thursday, November 29, 2007


I was in an unnecessarily aggressive mood – quite inappropriate for the task at hand, since it was one that required an immense amount of patience. The process of applying nailpolish disgusted me with as much intensity as the end results of well-applied nailpolish appealed to me. I have a history of failing miserably in all my attempts to accomplish a smudge-free, evenly-applied, smooth coat on even a single fingernail!
In denial, I had resorted to surveying the mess that I had made, with evident pride but the demon of my conscience pulled me by the ear everytime, to the unpalatable truth that it was one ghastly, soul-revolting mess!!
The immediate tendency of my logic-driven brain was to figure out the mysteriously evasive reason behind my innate inability to deliver a smooth finish. Definitely, my masterstrokes weren’t at fault! Maybe the nailpolish decided to play spoil-sport and got a little dried up, to foil my earnest efforts to succeed. Maybe the bottle that I decided to pick up at the store was sealed a little too late – late enough to allow its contents to wither. Maybe the brush that came with it failed to match up to my swift, delicate strokes. All hopes of one of these fantastic theories being true were dashed when mom walked in and in a minute or two, walked out of the room with nails well–adorned by the same ‘sticky muck’ which was accused of being the sole cause of the unfortunate mishap that my nails were a victim of.
With a fresh outpour of vengeance, I soon engaged myself in the monotonous sequence of coat and uncoat with my nailpolish remover playing the protagonist who bashes up the villainous and stubborn nailpolish. The nailpolish remover was a perfect antidote to all my troubles, a balm to my lacerated feelings, the harbinger of a fresh start and new beginnings, a retriever of normalcy – much like the undo button in an edit menu.
That reminds me of an incident in which the nailpolish remover unleashed the negative aspects of its nature. I wasn’t on the receiving end, not me! It reciprocates my love with equal intensity. A friend won’t play the fiend! I clearly recall what had friend once wished to wipe out even the memory of a greasy oil stain from the face of her latest cellular mobile. Resorting to the nailpolish remover wasn’t the wisest thing to do. She went ahead with this crazy idea anyway. Noone could tell that the mangled remains belonged to a fine-looking mobile phone once upon a time. I personally don’t blame the nailpolish remover. The entire act was preposterous! It was an insult to its supreme capabilities! Its analogous to using a fire extinguisher to put out the flame on a matchstick!
After hours of toiling, I finally managed to coat almost every fingernail with lustrous nail enamel. It was the smoothest finish ever and there wasn’t a trace of a fingermark on it!! Just one more nail to coat, I smirked with anticipation as I dipped the brush into the bottle one last time, almost not looking at it, since I had complete mastery over the subject by then. With the swiftest and the most delicate swish, like that of an angel gliding over heavenly waters, I delivered my mater of masterstrokes and slowly parted my eyelids to behold the marvelous sight. The indelible memory of the empty bottle and the brush sans the nail enamel still gives me extraordinary fits of giddiness each time I look at a bottle of nailpolish…

Monday, November 5, 2007

Gossip Grannies

The seat cracked as if a heavy body had lowered itself upon it. The protagonist whose posterior had been responsible for the embarrassingly audible event, belongs to the category of toothless grannies whose jaws go smack-smack while relating, what seems to them, juicy and delectable stories of people who are unfortunately acquainted to them. A true gossip granny is always inclined to make a good story out of everything and the truest of them all had just made herself comfortable on a couch near our front door.
What followed was a sheer torrent of ‘Do you remembers’ and ‘That reminds mes’ followed by the customary reference to my increased or decreased bulk. She’d go ‘hiss hiss!’ at the curious inability of her immediate circle to appreciate the value of being able to report succulent and eyebrow-raising developments in the lives of the unfortunate.
“Whose marriage is on the rocks? Whose kid failed in the exams for the fifth time in a row? Who poses a serious threat to the harmony of the locality?” It would be a rarity if such questions would go unanswered by the end of her visit. Gossip granny has always tended to wake the fiend that sleeps in me. All the endless jib-jabbing makes me feel loony to the spleen and increasingly taxes my powers of endurance. Loud vocal deliveries through part-falling dentures about her oh-so-perfect grandchildren leave me convulsing in a corner of the room.
Serving refreshments is a far more daunting task. At first, she’ll click her tongue irritably for having interrupted her when she was on the verge of making a profoundly vital revelation. This would be followed by stinging complaints about how hot the tea was (the saccharine content of which was a diabolic scheme against the diabetic) and how the chocolate chips in the cookies stubbornly stuck to her dentures and refused to budge despite heroic efforts of her overworked tongue.
Some people would rather have an epileptic seizure than entertain a gossip granny. Gossip after gossip, she’d take refreshing draughts at the fountain of pleasure after she had thrown a bomb of a story and seen it explode. Right when you think she has run out of news, she’ll surprise you with a piece of information more shocking and more alarming than the ones related so far. The stories are well-sequenced with the best saved for last! Gossip granny delivers all these equipped with a finely honed, well-sharpened set of demeaning vocabulary tools while I sit quivering in my slippers.
After hours of painful waiting, it finally comes like a spring in the desert! – the moment she pulls herself up the couch and inches doorwards! It is an infinitely relieving feeling – a balm to the tortured spirit.
“Frightful!”, exclaimed my friend as I related the experience to her.
“Dreadful!”, I assented.
“Terrible!’, she suggested.
“Most!”, I agreed as I left. It wasn’t a very good exit speech but I’m a girl of too impatient spirit to find solace in an unending war of synonyms.