Thursday, July 30, 2009

Size matters....

I still remember, when I was a little boy, I was so skinny that my mother was so worried of me. Eventhough she bred me well with all high calorific foods (she was a complan mom), I disappointed her by displaying my sunken collar bones. My sister started her arithmetic by counting my ribs. In school morning prayers, the head mistress always scold the boy standing at my rear to move forward and not to leave a gap between him and the boy standing in front of me. It was a normal ritual that the "rear-boy" would catch my skinny arms and quickly flaunt my presence to the head mistress. My English teacher would always rephrase the idiom "as-thin-as-rake" to "as-thin-as-mohammed". To sum up the total dismays, the birds would sit on my head mistaking for electric poles (one bird to another : watch out!! this pole is shorter than all those electric poles that we have seen in Arcot road) whenever I was waiting for my school buses.

When I was venturing into my teen age, I got fascinated by everything that is slender and slim under the sun; either it was that slim Zoology teacher, Mrs. Meera or that thin red book of Ruskin Bond's collection of short stories. The dosas cooked by my mother were demanded on lean girths. I searched whole of our school library for the thin volume of Iliad. In restaurants I deliberately roll the fork around a long string of noodle and throw a scorny peek onto the chubby men devouring the big cheese burgers.

It was an assertion that my tiny brain has made that I warrant only the slimmy things. This saga of "thinaholic" pursued till my marriage. Still there is a joke going around in my family about the moment I have dropped the "poochendu" - an ornamented bunch of flowers during my marriage. My wife raised her face for the first time to take a quick glance on her "pehelwan" who is supposed to protect her all through her life. I just beamed at her and told that the guy seated on my back nudged me to drop it. This joke is taught to all the new brides of our family along with their rites and daily duties as a married woman. On our honeymoon trip to Kodaikanal, I attempted to look at the pillar rocks through the telescope. When I heard the chuckles of my wife, I turned around with a look "what's so funny?". She told me that I matched the perfect stand to the telescope (co-incidentally I was in black shirt matching telescope color).

Gone all those days now!

During my last trip to Madurai Meenakshi Hospital in Madurai, when I was running on the treadmill for echo test, a hospital attendant has remarked,

"Why you have to eat this much and why you have to run like a thief running for life". Yes, now I am over-weight.

Now my biggest worry is that my daughter Sherin, after few years, while flipping through our marriage photo album should not question my wife;

"Shameless!! you have married some other guy and now living with dad??"

What I have learnt now is that I cannot shut the people's mouth with my body stature, either slim or fat.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Around the World in 80 Trades

I have recently finished reading this book, Around the world in 80 trades written by Conor Woodman. There are three reasons that stimulated me to pick this book up :

1. Trading in the time of recession (how ironic, it sounds).
2. The book is a memoir (memoirs is always a sneak-peek of life values through windows of others' life).

3. Book title is the perfect homonymn of Verne's famous novel. Being a ardent fan of Verne, I was just curious to know whether any injustice imparted onto the title

Conor had been easy on words without sounding too British. Sometimes a good message is spoilt by the decoration of words (I would quote Relin's adult version of "Three Cups of Tea"). The author travels across the globe to practice the traditional system of internation trade. Here I list down the few snippets, I came to understand after finished reading this book.

- In Morocco, every carpet is woven over a story

- Chillies can thwart elephants too

- Chinese like everything in red right from Communism to Wine

- Everything goes with Mexicans either Surf Boards or Tortillas

- It is difficult to trade Camels in deserts; selling ice to Eskimos

- Selling Coffee beans is as tedious as selling Nuclear Weapons

- In Japan, every fish has its day on Sushi plate.

Liked this book....
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