Euphemistically speaking

You know, as if the sad looks, the long sighs, the vacant stares (looking at me, beyond me, through me… as though trying to look into my very brain, to figure out what I am thinking) were not enough, of late, I’ve become hyper-aware of the euphemisms that have crept into conversations I have been having with people.

Not all people though, only my parents, some of my older relatives, and those of my acquaintances that Helen Fielding refers very insightfully to as the ‘smug marrieds’ (but of course, from Bridget Jones’s Diary. Really now, if you’ve been reading this blog for any amount of time and have still not figured out that I think of ‘Bridget Jones’s Diary’ as the holy book for us singletons- yet another catchword from the book-and I pepper my posts quite liberally with language borrowed from it, then you’ve not been a very observant/ smart blog-reader, have you? But I digress…)

So, these days, I’ve been spending time thinking up answers to my dad’s not infrequent “Bete, iraada kya hai” (Hindi- ‘Child, what are your intentions?’) The first time he asked me this question I asked, quite innocently, in a very Bambi-like manner, “Iraada? About what?” but upon hearing his snorts of disgruntlement (at having to explain what he thought was a straightforward question) I very quickly realized that this was nothing but yet another veiled reference to my inaction in the getting married department. Now I just have fun with my poor dad.

My dad’s probably the biggest fan of this blog and I wouldn’t put it past him to have it on an RSS feed subscription! So, it is with some regret and trepidation that I divulge all the funny answers I have come up with to his regular “Bete, iraada kya hai”s. I have fought the urge to say “Appa, mera iraada hai China se Aksai Chin waapis chheenne ka!” or “Appa, it is my intention to run the Boston Marathon” or “To finish half a litre of Ben and Jerry’s low-fat yoghurt in fudge brownie flavor.” [I realize that the latter two are mutually exclusive, but the iraada springs eternal.] But mostly my intention is only to not let the phone conversation dwindle or else, inevitably, “Bete, iraada kya hai?” is likely to raise its insistent, annoying, answer-less head!

My mom has a different style. She is about as subtle as a Tomahawak missile. Her euphemisms are less euphemistic and more in the range of the anvil the roadrunner keeps dropping on Wily.E. Coyote’s head (HOW he manages that without even having any arms god alone knows!) She will often say things like “next July when you’ll be married…” conveniently forgetting that it is already October, and I am not even DATING anyone yet. Huh.

Aunts and uncles (especially the Maharashtrian ones) will often talk about when they will get to eat the pedhas; milk sweets traditionally distributed at Marathi weddings. Of course, my favourite is all those relatives who feel it absolutely incumbent upon them to come up to me at weddings of common relatives just to say to me “Eeeyyy! Hehehehehe, you next, hunh?” Me next? For what? In the line to the loo? Yeah, sure; and it’s true too! Because this is often said while I AM in line for the loo- a paavam captive. I especially like it when the discussion reaches crescendo with aunties discussing what colour saris they will wear at my reception. 😐

Smug marrieds are that group of people who are not only happily married themselves but also on a mission to get everyone else on the planet to be in the same state. But I also have a conspiracy theory about them, which is this:- Smug marrieds are actually not happy, and because misery loves company, they want all the singletons to stop having fun and get married and be miserable with them. Their euphemisms will usually take the form of “So, when can I send you an invite for 2?” It takes me an inhuman amount of self-possession to resist answering them with “We-ell, lemme see now… the last human virgin birth was 2000 odd years ago, so I’d say we’re due for another any day now. Heck, I could be with child-all by myself-maybe even this year! Surely at your next Diwali do I will be a party of not one, but 2.”

Actually, I am even ok with my parents, older relatives and even smug married frenemies- of whom I am grateful to report I have not that many, asking me the W question (like in, When do you plan to get hitched? Do it already!) However, what I DO take severe exception to is, random cellphone kiosk guys at the mall asking, nay, TELLING me I should be married!!! Of course, I realize this means I must tell the story now, but that is why I have a blog, so I can tell stories.

So, the other day I was at the mall with my cousin and her adorable baby. The baby was restless in her pram (‘stroller’ for the Americans reading this) and so my cousin picked her up. My cousin stood there for a while waiting for the cell phone salesperson to process my credit card till I told her she should go rest her feet. When she left the helpful salesman asked me “Is this her first one?” upon being informed that it was indeed, he volunteered information about his own 18-month old (I swear the cell phone salesman didn’t look a day older than 18 himself!) then he looks me up and down, and admittedly, I am no Jessica Biel- my abs tend more to cotton-candy than washboard, and he says “and how many kids you got?” as though that were some foregone conclusion. I informed him in a sad voice in a low-decibel volume I wasn’t married. To which he responded rather vaingloriously “You should be married.” Then asking me where I was from he proceeded to give me proof of his being 18 and recited many choice abuse words in Hindi taught him by an Indian friend from Mumbai. I think I was very mature when I decided not to reveal to him that I had been thinking all of them about him just minutes ago.


October 14, 2008 at 9:42 pm 1 comment

Charge of the Little Boy brigade, OR ‘Mommy take care of me’

Of late, I’ve noticed an alarming (?) trend. More and more young, nay, very young… errr, younger to me anyway, boys (because that is what they are; I absolutely refuse to refer to these video-game playing, skateboarding, mom’s-lap-seeking, late-night-beer-guzzling-yet-managing-to-reach-work-at-8:00 am, forces of nature, ‘men’.) have been expressing an interest in being more than just friends with me!

Now, don’t get me wrong. I think boys of a certain age are a great people to spend time with. They make for fantastic friends. Unfortunately, it’s when they articulate their desire to be ‘more than friends’ that my antennae go up.

I also don’t want to leave the reader with the impression that all these guys are hound dogs (some are, but then so are some who’re my age or older.) There are many out there whose intentions are purer than the gold in Fort Knox and they jump straight to ‘Marriage’ (GULP!!!)

But, like the sophisticated, worldly-wise woman I am, instead of making them happy with a “Yes, of course, darling. I like you too! Let’s go steady”, I usually respond “Me? You know I’m 2/3/4/5 years older than you, right? Why me? Why not someone closer to your own age? Maybe your own generation?” Do you see these lines at the corners of my eyes? Do you even know what they’re called, you smooth-skinned, bright-eyed, bushy-tailed, dream-castle-dwelling, pretty little boy? Crow’s feet! That’s what! [Ok, so, the latter part of that is either said in my mind or under my breath, so I’m a big, fat wuss, so what?]

When this started happening more and more, I got curious. Was my new anti-aging cream working so well that I had really started to lose years like the box promised, thanks to the resultant glowy, new, wrinkle-free skin?

So, obviously, like any other fan of Malcolm Gladwell, and ex-student of Mr. Shrikant Godbole (Professor, Applied Marketing Research, Symbiosis Institute of International Business) I decided to undertake a short but in-depth empirical study of the causes of this weird turn of events, which would turn out to be quite revealing.

First, I confided in some of my more discreet, non-judgmental girl friends. What they said surprised me more than anything else so far! Apparently, this syndrome is quite common these days; they were getting asked out by, propositioned and proposed to all the time, by little boys of their own!!! [That ruled out my anti-aging cream being miraculous- we all use different brands.]

Primary research out of the way, I turned to secondary research. Cosmo, iVillage, Yahoo, you name it. I also rented and watched ‘Prime.’ (starring Meryl Streep, Uma Thurman and the incredibly gorgeous Bryan Greenberg as Uma’s Little Boy)

What I found alternately warmed the cockles of my heart and set me hyperventilating! This is a phenomenon on the rise. Tired of men older than us who want us to fit into the mould of their mothers, a lot of Indian women my age are succumbing to the attentions of younger men, bucking the trend, contrary to the polite norms of traditional Indian society.

Alrighty then, I thought, how bad could it be? I could date a younger guy. It would be fun. We could have fun conversations about sports, current affairs, micro-brewing. No worrying about how we’re getting older by the minute and MUST get hitched by midnight on his 34th birthday! No thoughts about how his mom will/ won’t approve of my wearing shorts in my own house.

I was beginning to see the upshot of it all. But then, suddenly, unbidden came the creepy thoughts of men’s midlife crises. ‘If Christie Brinkley, an ex-supermodel for chrissakes, can’t keep her Little Boy on the straight and narrow, what chance have I??!!?” I thought. Then came the recollection of Saif Ali Khan and Amrita Singh and Justine Timberlake and Cameron Diaz and their ill-fated, short-lived marriage and romance respectively.

No amount of surfing the net for the happiness shared by Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore or Abhishek-Aishwarya could stop the panic. After all, when men with younger wives and girlfriends stray all the time, why would I willingly put myself in a place where one fine day, 20 years hence, I would have to say to my younger significant other “It’s because I’m wrinkly like a prune, and remind you of your grandma, isn’t it, ISN’T IT?”

I realize that this line of thought says more about me, and my insecurities, than anything about this phantom younger man, but there you have it.

I also believe (especially post the secondary research on Cosmo) that little boys are attracted to older women for exactly those reasons that we should NOT be with them. Subconsciously, they’re looking for a mommy-substitute. And they, god bless them, don’t even know it!

But to me, a lot of them seem to have taken out classifieds that read something like this: “Little Boy seeks Sugar Mommy. Must love Wii (or at least not mind me playing it for days on end) and cleaning up after me.”
I think it should be listed under biological facts: men under a certain age are physically incapable of being neat, clean, organized, responsible. [Yes, yes, all of you who take severe objection to this sweeping generalization- your protests have been duly noted- even before you’ve made them. How cool am I?]

One would think that at least on I’d be spared the ‘charge of the little boy brigade’- but nooo. This trend is rearing its cute yet misguided head there as well!

Here is my all-time fave from a 26-year old in India- “Hi Mam (sic), your profile interests me. Age is not a bar for me, since I believe maturity of mind comes with age only.”

To borrow (and put a slight twist on) a line* by one of my favourite British authors, Gerald Durrell, “since this statement was as innocent as it was bewildering and fallacious….” I couldn’t resist writing back to the poor sap to say “Thanks for your interest, but apart from the age there are certain other factors that prevent me from accepting your interest. But I do appreciate your sentiments and wish you all the best.” To which this persistent young whippersnapper replied “Please let me know the things which you think could be the problem in order to proceed further. We can communicate and clear the doubts”!!!

As my best friend Priya would say- “Oof!”

But through all this, I really appreciate all the little boys who’ve hit on me. It’s made my day (sometimes week) knowing that when the men are letting me down left right and center, the little boys can be counted on to at least, if nothing else, lift my spirits and give my ego a little boost. Long live the Little Boys!

*From a sentence uttered by Margo, the author’s sister, in one of his best-loved books- ‘My family and other animals’

September 6, 2008 at 5:43 pm 1 comment

One tight one

If you’re single and making decent money in the US, you probably do some or all of these things on weekends- you go to the mall to shop, you go drinking with your friends, if you’re religious, you go to the temple, if your parents are hoping you’ll get hitched this year at least then you go on what I like to call- ‘shaadi-dates’ (but what should actually be known as “mental-illness-inducing vortices of awkwardness.”) Occasionally, you’ll go visit other single friends in nearby cities or states so that you can go with them to the mall, drink with them, and swap stories about their mental-illness-inducing vortices of awkwardness.

But the one thing you’re sometimes FORCED to do on weekends is a Walmart run or a Target run. THAT is when the sh*t hits the roof, for me anyway, and makes me realize that perhaps the reason I am not married yet, is because my subconscious won’t permit me to enter the state of holy matrimony, which is only the first step towards the decidedly UNHOLY state of maternity!

I like to think of myself as a sensible, kindly individual, one that likes children for the most part. I enjoy babies. Like to count the tyres they have on their chubby arms and legs. I like to tickle them and make them gurgle with delight. I like asking toddlers silly questions and hearing their adorably intelligent answers. Seeing as I share a lot of their interests- Avatar on Nickelodeon, PSP, Gianormous amounts of ice-cream- kids and I, we get along pretty darned well. But then, all of a sudden, along comes a weekend demanding a Target run.

Desi kids at Walmart/Target/ Kmart seem to me like they’ve suddenly either discovered the existence of a previously unknown nasty side, or like they are their own evil twin, whose purpose in life is to embarrass their poor desi parents who cannot even resort to the standard desi fallback of ‘one tight one’!

I talk only of the desi kids because the very first week that I set foot in this country, I knew, so long as the parents here continue treat their kids like mature adults/ friends/ thinking partners/ drinking buddies, no good can come of it, and no kid will behave in a supermarket. The old Indian standby of ‘one tight one’ is a non-existent concept here. And more’s the pity. I’ve seen plenty of angelic blondes and cherubic brunettes kicking and screaming who could’ve done marvelously with one.

I have a theory about why desi kids go insane only or particularly at Target and Walmart. They look around. The see the gora angels and cherubs on the floor, banging their little fists, kicking out as the hassled gora parents says “Jeremy, sweetie, don’t bang the floor with your fists, it’s unsanitary”. In the face of that superb bit of parenting, Jeremy continues to bang the floor, and throws in a face blue from holding his breath for good measure. Little Aryan or Nikita [and by the way, why can’t Indian parents in the States do a better job of naming their kids?] looks over, learns that parents may be controlled by such simple yet wonderful means as breath-holding and fist-banging, and decides to try it out at the first available opportunity.

Poor unsuspecting parent of Aryan/Nikita, in the home linen aisle suddenly hears, “Papa, can I have the toy/ game we just saw?” “No, you have enough toys at home” says responsible desi parent. “Waaaahhhhhh” goes the now-wise desi kid. “But I waaaaaannnnnt ittttttt. I don’t have spiderman. Everyone has spiderman! I waaaaannnttttt iiiitttttt.” Parent turns around, shocked, looking a bit like they’ve just seen their dead grandmother, and tries to pacify the child with “But beta, remember, we bought batman last week? And we have to run home now, or we will miss Spongebob!” To no avail. The whining turns into wailing which can soon turn into a full-blown tantrum.

Parents looks like they wish they’d never given up the use of contraceptives. Parents look at each other with open hostility, as though to declare “this unattractive whiny/waily quality our offspring is currently displaying comes from YOUR side of the family!” Parents’ look changes from shocked to accusatory to murderous. They know what would put an end to this. One tight one. Unfortunately, they’re in Target. And Target is in the US. Target is not a good place to administer a dose of ‘one tight one’. So they do the next best thing. They tell the child, “if you don’t start behaving yourself in exactly 1 minute, you’re going to get one tight one, as soon as we get home.” Child, blissfully unaware of the mysterious ‘one tight one’ continues to wail.

Parents forget about shopping anymore, grab their little, howling bundle of sorrow and runnnnnn out of Target. Mommy straps Aryan or Nikita in, extra tight. Papa drives like the fuzz is on his tail. They get home in record time, to the loud sounds of spiderman-deprivation. They get into the house, and that child, that beloved angel, that little American baby, finally becomes a desi-they’ve learnt what ‘one tight one’ means.

July 25, 2008 at 9:44 pm Leave a comment

The OTHER men

I have a theory. Part of the reason a lot of us totally awesome women are still single is, the other men in our lives.

There are various ways in which pre-existing, non-romantic relationships with members of the male persuasion can thwart our matrimonial (or even just dating) ambitions.

First let’s examine the different not-romantic relationships we have with men.

Men in our lives are- our dads, our brothers, our guy friends, our ex-boyfriends [whom you regret dating to the extent that if given a choice between an amputation and dating them, knowing what you now know about them, you would pick the amputation], bosses, subordinates, sales guys at shoe stores, pizza/ Chinese food delivery guys, and please, don’t tell me you “don’t have a relationship with” the last two, because that would just be a big fat lie.

Each of them has either behaved atrociously and damaged our psyche in some slight way, turning us off men almost entirely, OR has created in our minds a 100-foot cutout of what we think our man should be, by being super-great himself.

Our dads fall into the latter category. Having raised us, read to us, taught us to write, cleaned our scraped knees, made our models for school, taught us to ride bikes and play cricket, and in my case, to cook, dads are usually the first male role models we have. For the longest time, we measure every single guy we meet against their almost unattainably high standards of being a man. But then some of us are rebellious, and choose to go out with someone antithetical to our dads, and very soon we realize what a foolish mistake we’ve made.

Our brothers are, 99% of the time, self-appointed guardians of our honour/ morality police putting Taliban to shame. Need someone to glare at the cute guy next door? Call your brother. Bench-mate from accounting class about to ask you out? No, no, no, my dear. Brother already knows about it, and has challenged said bench-mate to a duel unto death. Friend of a friend even remotely interested in getting your number? Brother dearest has cut all the telephone lines in his locality. Oh brother!

Our guy friends also fall into 3 sub-categories. One, the totally wonderful ones, who have all your dad’s great qualities and none of his idiosyncracies, on whom you crushed for, like, EVER, but who have girlfriends (whom also you unfortunately happen to like) OR the really funny/ fun bad guys who admit they’re hound dogs. They don’t respect women in general, but think the sun shines out your behind. They’re crushing on you for like EVER, but you would never give them the time of the day. The 3rd kind are your ‘brothers-from-another-mother’. They are simpatico but don’t want you to do anything stupid. You would do well to listen to them, because sometimes they come up with gems like “see…like how a peNNin manadhai oru peNN dhaan arivaaLo…ade maadri oru aaNin yeNNathai oru aaN daan arivaan”; loosely translated-“just as only a woman knows the pain/ feelings of a woman… only a man knows another man’s (Bad) intentions [presumably with regard to me.] This one I got from my friend Anand Subramaniam of New Jersey whom I find to be well up on his platitudes (and impatiently awaiting my next post!) He said this when I told him I was going on a date with a guy who was in town for a conference. Anand seemed to think the conference was bunkum. He said “avan figure-a correct panna varan“; loosely translated- he’s coming to patao me.

The less said about the exes the better. Some have been known to disgust their ex-girlfriends so much, the poor women have changed sexual orientation!

Question is, inundated as we are, with advice from or the example of these upstanding gentlemen, or, alternatively, disgusted as we are by the sorry figure some of them cut… what are our chances of ever being normal and objectively judging a guy who’s interested in us? I’d say NIL.

But you know what? I don’t mind. Because the good guys’ goodness teaches me what I should look for and what I deserve, and the bad guys’ badness tells me what to avoid like the plague. It’s only a matter of time before my superior sifting skills have found me the man of my dreams. 😀

July 17, 2008 at 10:00 pm 5 comments

An ode to Girl Friends

Occasionally, one hears a woman say to a man, with a hint of pride in her voice, “I don’t have too many female friends, you know, too much politics. Most of my friends are men.”  This, in my humble opinion, is either a lie or worse, it is something they believe to be true but discover sooner or later to be as un-factual as can be.

Whenever I have heard this statement and turned around to look at who it was that made it, it is one of 3 kinds of women:

1.     A five foot nine blond with a figure that’s a perfect 10… usually to a man old enough to be her dad; because she is looking for a sugar daddy.

2.     A woman ‘dressed for success’. Austere, dark pin-striped pant-suit, no-nonsense hair, limited jewelry, the barest minimum of make-up, and that because society demands it of a woman… in conversation with a male colleague with whom she works on Wall Street or the financial district of the town/city she is from, to indicate her interest in being allowed into the inner circle of the old boys club.

3.     A very, very young girl. New to college. Probably her first time away from home… to a guy she’s flirting with-and you can rest assured she’s never had her heart broken.

I want to say to these women, if you really don’t have any close girl friends, I am sorry for you. The world over, girl friends are the single most important support system for women to rely upon. And if, like me, you’re a single woman, then the importance of your girl friends (whether single or double) increases exponentially. I will explain why.

Girl friends are the spoonful of sugar that makes the medicine go down. They’re sugar and spice and everything nice.  They’re there when you need them, and when you think you don’t (but really you do.) Girl friends are the lubricant that makes the ride of life smooth.

They make you feel beautiful, when you feel uglier than sin. They make you feel like a super model, when you feel as fat as the Michelin Man.

They go with you to Goa and drink neat rum every night for 3 nights while you cry over the boy you thought was the love of your life who merely thought of you as his ‘just for now’ girl*.

They eat a whole chocolate cake with you when you’re both on a diet and then tell you tomorrow’s a brand new day and then actually drag you out of bed to take you to the gym/ morning walk the next day!

They bring you coffee/ tea/ sympathy when the latest louse you were stupid enough to give your heart to played football with it for a bit, and finally trampled all over it.

They take you clubbing when all you want to do is get into your sheep-print pajamas and get into bed and cry for the next month or so, because you make horrible life choices. Usually you come out having been hit on by anywhere between 3-5 men (depending on the size of the club and how much time you spent on the dance floor) and totally back in the groove.

They join you in royally abusing your boss and his/her entire family when your increment doesn’t meet your high standards.

They warn you about the new louse you’re falling for. They introduce you to their very decent guy friends and colleagues to prevent you from going down the louse route again.

They stand up for the Real McCoy (if and when you do find him) when you’re mad at him about something completely insignificant and about to throw away the best thing you’ve ever had.

They cry buckets, shedding huge pearls of tears, when Mr. Right proposes and you FINALLY get engaged.

They convince your dad your fiancé is actually worthy of your hand in marriage and should not be put through the Spanish Inquisition.

They go shopping with you, visiting shop after shop in search of the perfect sari for the reception, never once complaining after you make them visit 30 shops only to return, in the end, to the very first one.

They sit next to you and hold your hand when your heart feels like it’s about to race right out of your chest cavity, when the priest says to you and the love of your life… this is it, this is real, this is forever.

They help you cook like a 5-star chef (or at least buy food from the best 5-star restaurant) the first time you have your in-laws over for dinner.

They get their husbands to introduce your husband to people he needs to know for work.

They go to Lamaze classes with you even if your husband comes with. (You ask them to, because you know you need them there; husbands are notoriously prone to fainting in delivery rooms.)

They treat your children like their own. Taking care of them, as you would of theirs.

There is a lot more I could write here, but my girl friends (you know who you are), and girl friends in general, are so awesome, I’d be up for a reeeeaalllly long time. So to those misguided women who take pride in not having close girl friends I say this again- I’m sorry for you, because you don’t know what you’re missing.


*[The phrase/description ‘just-for-now girl’ is courtesy Helen Fielding, my inspiration and also my fave female author after Jane Austen- she ties for second place with J K Rowling]

July 13, 2008 at 2:42 am 2 comments

Pushing 29…away

If the fashion magazines are to be believed, pink is the new black, and 50 is the new 40. And that means 40 is the new 30? Ok yeah, sure, why not? And 30 is the new 20? Nooooooo. No, my naive friend, no.

The gap between 20 and 30 is one that cannot be bridged by pithy fashion magazine quips. For a woman, the decade between age 20 and 30 is a gaping chasm into which have fallen such wonderful things as the ability to party all night and look like a daisy in the morning (even if you slept with make up on), the permission to wear mini skirts/ bubble gum pink lipstick or nail polish/ your hair in two ponytails, your skin tone, and most importantly (if you are a single woman) your parents’ faith in you to actually make something of yourself… even if you are the CEO of the world’s largest online shoe retailer or something else equally awesome.

20 was when you were swatting away dozens of men away each week because you ‘needed your space’. 30 is when you sing “I could’ve danced all night” when a cute guy sitting waaayyyy across the bar from you glances at you, and holds your gaze-with or without a smile- for anywhere from 10-15 seconds.

So is the big 3-0 the number to dread then? No. After all, that is not the title of this post. Ladies and Gentlemen, I put this to you- 30 is not the most dreaded number in a single girl’s life. That number is 29. Here are my reasons for it.

1. You feel that because you are still in your 20s and this is (possibly) your last year in them, you can do stupid things like: a) buying a ticket to Ireland with money you were going to invest in mutual funds- of the safe kind, then b) Getting incredibly drunk in a bar with a girl friend who has drunk you under the table and needs to be taken home on a stretcher and finally c) To add injury (of the mental kind) to insult, making out with a ugly, red-headed 17-year old boy whom you know only as “Lad”!

2. At 29 you work hard to keep 30 away. So you join a gym, to prevent your thighs and upper arms from jiggling as much and prematurely reaching the floor. Problem is, because you ARE almost 30, the gymming is painful, and, let’s face it, you already look kinda crappy in tights and anything sleeveless…so you never end up going anyway [There goes the money you were saving to invest in life insurance]

3. 29, the last year in the glorious decade that was the 20s, and you are suddenly overcome with remorse about all those great guys you swatted away 9 years ago, and it becomes your life’s mission to track them all down- every last mother’s son of them. And invariably, you will either find out they are married with 2 kids and a dog, OR they are still single, in which case, you date them and discover a) reason they are still single and b) that you did the right thing swatting them away in the first place  .

There are many more, but because I am very depressed today (I turn 29 in exactly 3 months- this is my last quarter of a year’s worth of sanity.) and as I can no longer stay up late and look like a daisy in the morning, this post must end here. To my sisters who’re pushing 29, push HARDER I say. If you spend the money you were saving to buy that cute 1-bedroom in Lonavla, you can probably buy this new cream I saw in Sephora made from Himalayan Lichen and Pacific Sea Cucumber jelly. It’s only $200 an ounce.

July 9, 2008 at 3:44 am 4 comments

There is hope yet!

Yesterday, 4th of July, returning home I took the T (Boston’s beloved/hated-depending on what your experience with it is-public transport system. The ‘T’ is short for, I assume, the Train/ transport/ transit etc. etc.)

I was squished against the door by a very young, ridiculously attractive hispanic couple who seemed fused together and didn’t seem to mind the crowdedness at all. In fact, I suspect even if there weren’t such a crowd, they’d still have stood that way- like her head was soldered to his shoulder and his arm to her hip. 

Anyway, so, as I stood with my left shoulder buried into the frame of the door and the right hand groping for any sign of  a bar so I wouldn’t land on my butt the next time the T driver decided to brake, a 60-something year old, white-haired gentleman got on. HOW he found space to stand between my poor shoulder and the door is a mystery I am still trying to solve 24 hours after the fact!

So, as Americans are wont- correction: as caucasian Americans are wont-he greeted me (as though we’d known each other for years), asked if I’d been to watch the 4th of July fireworks and asked if I’d ever ridden the T when it was so crowded before. He was a sweet old man and I answered all his questions, very satisfactorily I think, adding for good measure how good his country was and all that I admired about it.

Then it was my turn. So, kind of obviously, I asked him if he was local and if this was his first time seeing the fireworks in Boston, the birthplace of the revolution. He answered he was local to Western Massachusetts where’d lived the last 25 years of his life, after growing up in Connecticut and going to college in New York. And thennnnnn he said…. “Yeah, I just got married last year, and my wife lived in Boston and I just moved” and he pointed to this pretty, petite, graceful fifty-something year old who had been waving both arms for a while trying to get his attention to tell him that theirs was the next stop!!! Then the train slowed to a stop, he said goodnight and that he enjoyed speaking with me, and he got off. But as he did, he left me with a cataclysmic realisation!

I say, if HE can find love at 60 AND move from the ‘burbs to the city for it… Hell, YES there’s hope for me (us- to any singletons reading this) yet. 


July 6, 2008 at 2:07 am 1 comment

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