Posted by: akilamoni | June 12, 2008

The Times they are a changing

Last evening, I was invited to a dinner at my neighbour’s house. A lot of my friends were surprised that I even knew my neighbour in the first place. Suddenly that seemed old fashioned!

My neighbour, Polly(all names changedJ) is a very friendly and gregarious personality who befriended me and my ex room mate. She is an architect. Polly wanted to give me a farewell dinner and had called me over when some of her friends were visiting her.

My first instinct on being invited to a social gathering such as this was, ”Are you sure Polly, you want me around when you are meeting your friends after ages?” She reassured me that she wanted me to be around and showed me the carrot of some yummy dinner.

Confident of a Delhi dinner not starting on time, I landed an hour late. The group had just gathered and maybe downed a couple of drinks by then. The usual round of introductions followed. I was introduced to

·         A Pony Tailed man- NRI, lets call him Pony. Pony was a chemical trader from Bangkok

·         Slightly tanned lady- environmentalist from New Delhi. Lets call her San Tan

·         Pretty Delhi lady- lets call her Meena

·         Children’s books author, journalist, film maker-all in one- lets call her SSoul(Sweet soul)

·         Then came the head of an NGO(who was busy on the phone when I had made my entrance). Lets call him poopanator

The party got jump started since Pony had a flight to catch and we were all served dinner (much to my relief). While we all served ourselves, Pony was insistent that he wait for Poopanator.

Mental Note to myself: Surely go ahead and wait all you want Pony.. chomp, chomp, chomp.

Entry of Poopanator: Moi got introduced to him- “Poopy, this is Akila. Akila this is poopy. Poopy,

 Akila works for Coke.”

Before the dinner I had caught SSoul in the passageway and tried to make polite conversation with her and had asked her,” So, SSoul what do you do?”

SSoul:” You must be a South Indian”

Moi:” So what did I do wrong now?”

SSoul(smiles): “ South Indians cant pronounce my name right”

I pronounced her name again and said, ”That’s your name right?”

Mental Note: Go get yourself some ear buds lady

The dinner conversation centered on NGOs and environmental issues. Pony wanted to start some NGO and was asking Poopy for some details which he seemed reluctant to share. A good 15 mins into the conversation the group realized, I was sitting and reading a book and decided to engage me in the conversation. My gracious host Polly first checked if I understood Hindi and ensured that I was alright.

San Tan who was the environment expert and was working on solid waste management, suddenly realized I worked for Coca-Cola and said,” You know Coke got sued once and they approached me to get them out of the hassle”

Poopanator to SSoul:” Remember that was our friend Messy’s campaign”(Chuckle Chuckle)

Mental Note: Boringggggg

Then in the same breath San Tan declared that she was sick of her job and looked at me and said” You are HR, I will give you my resume “ .She followed me to the kitchen and started talking about job opps in Coke.

Mental Note: Lady, make up your mind. You either like us or you don’t

Back in the hall, the conversation was in full swing and  still lingering on waste management, when my host Polly once again checked if I wasn’t feeling left out in the discussion. At this juncture the not so gracious Poopy, looked at me and said” Akila, You guys Bottle the **it  and San Tan’s co. clears the **it.”

I shot a glance and said, “Sorry, can you say that again?”

Conversations carried on unhindered.

Some of the guests left after a while and I found myself in the room with Polly, SSoul and my fave person, Poopy. Poopy proceeded to recall names of people who he knew in Coke.

 

Mental Note: 1. Yawn….got sacked 2.  yawn, was fired….3. yawn

 When Poopy relaised I was from TISS, he proceeded to say,” So how come you landed up at Coke?”

Mental Note: That does it. I am leaving. I left the house in 2 mins

Here I was called for a social dinner. Here I was the youngest in the room. Here I was 5 feet nothing with a man who was 6 feet everything.

And there he was trying to insult me.

Wonder how people can be so insensitive. I can blame it all on the “Delhi Culture” but the truth is somewhere deep down, all of us are becoming insensitive. Suddenly it is okie to insult people who have come to a dinner. Maybe I am even expected to be okie with it. Laugh it off. Say,”who cares”. The truth is I care.

A quick search on the internet this morning revealed that a large source of funding for this NGO comes from Microsoft!!!

Mental Note: bruhahahaha, you should read the papers more often or should stop faking about your tendencies towards Coca-Cola!!!

Last week, while I was waiting for my order in a coffee shop, a young girl came and sat at my table. When I pointed out to her that I had taken the table (pointing to my bag which I had left on the table), she said, ”Just two mins, I am waiting for my order.” Two mins turned to ten mins and her friend joined her at my table and they started having a normal conversation leaving me all squirmy. So I pointed out again to her that I had already taken the table, only to get shouted at. She got up and walked away in a huff and puff, muttering, “Whatever”.

Should I be apologetic about wanting to have my privacy in a table that I had booked?

I don’t want to begin my monologue on how anyone here can take my time for granted and act irresponsible and not feel sorry about it.

Last night, I went home all angry and irritated. I am used to all this social worker types messing with me reg my job. I was just irritated that we don’t have any more sensitivity left in us and those who have any left should probably hide it in a deep dark corner in an attic of their mind to live amongst the sharks.

The new world order has somehow granted people with the rights to intrude into personal spaces and mess with it. And worse, not be remorseful about it. In fact be happy about it.

Once me and a friend were waiting for a lift and were caught up in a conversation. The lift door opened and suddenly we were confused if it was just going up or down. On asking the people inside the lift, one girl answered us. We got in and my friend heard her mutter under her breath,” Ignorant fools”.

Lo Behold the style statement. Swear and be crabby for no reason. Somebody definitely forgot  to “teach their children well”.

Everytime I doubt, if I am doing the right thing by moving from, I meet two Poopy like people who reaffirm my decision! 

And there is one a certain Jewish-born troubadour from the United States who summarizes my feelings the best.

 

Come gather ’round people

Wherever you roam

And admit that the waters

Around you have grown

And accept it that soon

You’ll be drenched to the bone.

If your time to you

Is worth savin’

Then you better start swimmin’

Or you’ll sink like a stone

For the times they are a-changin’

The line it is drawn

The curse it is cast

The slow one now

Will later be fast

As the present now

Will later be past

The order is

Rapidly fadin’.

And the first one now

Will later be last

For the times they are a-changin’.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Responses

  1. wow…Wonder if that is delhi ishtyle or an indicator of times a changin’ all over. Kind of ironic, just becasue you work for cocacola you become a capitalist and just because I am in politics I become a comunist or even worse anarchist. I would like to think people here are too mrotified by the fact that they are associating with a veggie, teetotaller “communist” that they just stare and fumble.
    But YEY you are moving………

  2. Tagged!!

  3. Hey Caco….

    Couldnt agree more… But Ye am moving;)!

  4. lol. Darlin here i am dealin with a daily dose of random talk on insufferable social workers at IIM and there you are dealing with a dose on insufferable corporate fellows at random parties. Sigh. Strange how people of the same kind will have the same experiences wherever they be..

  5. pitaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!

    u just got tagged for some total our kind of nonsense talk!

  6. Over populated countries push people to bring the worst out of them. Call it the theory of evolution or just plain survival these characters have become this way out of necessity.

    I guess small towns like Coimbatore are probably the only places in India where one can find decency and respect for the other human.

    Kudos to you !


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