horror

A new world

After a long winding process of checking whether the bank branch is open or not, I make my way towards it. Yes, such checks are needed in these CoVid times, such is the uncertainty. 

Upon reaching, I extend my hand to push open the swinging door when suddenly the watchman rises from his stool and stands between me and the door. He points a gun and aims it between my eyes. I recoil in terror but then I realise that it is the plastic one measuring my temperature. Like it happens to many others who undergo this ritual, I don’t know whether to look at the gun with squinted eyes or just close them. “Theek hai”, he growls.

Again I extend my hand to open the door, when the watchman barks, “Ungli…”. Embarrassed, I raise my little finger and tell him, “No, no…I don’t want to go now”. With irritation in his voice, he shouts, “Arre, no! Your forefinger. Gentleman people like you, you don’t know even this?”

I don’t know where to hide my face as I feel a million eyes looking at me. I raise my forefinger, which he puts inside an oximeter. After few seconds which feel like an eternity he mumbles, “Ok”.

“Show me your hands”, he orders. He is really enjoying his current position of power. Being at the receiving end, I extend both my hands. Out of nowhere he fetches a dispenser and squirts few drops of sanitizer on my hands.

“Go!” He says and stands back, taking full precautions not to touch me even by mistake.

“And don’t take off your mask”. That’s his parting shot. 

This, then friends, is the new world where you are forced to wear masks and gloves inside the bank and the watchman points a gun point-blank between your eyes, outside.

Yatindra Tawde

horror, humour, Uncategorized

The Library

Recently a library in New Zealand had to un-install a buzzer from outside their premises. Apparently this high frequency buzzer had been installed by them to get rid of bullies who did not allow the students of the studious variety to study in peace peacefully. In short they were a nuisance to society. But the authorities decided that the buzzer itself was a nuisance since, in addition to the bullies, to get rid of whom it was meant for, it disturbed the students too. And it was said to violate the fundamental rights of the bullies too. And , what may we ask, are the fundamental rights of the bully? And mind you, it was not any library attached to a college or something, it was a public library.

In India, there is no such need for a buzzer to get rid of such bullies, especially in a public library. Since, first of all, the public library is usually situated in a real public place, which is quite noisy in itself, that there are not many patrons for it. Usually such libraries are bang in the middle of the vegetable markets thus the major study which happens is, “potato 100 Rs. A kg.”, etc. If a person goes to study physics, the only knowledge he will gain is, how the vegetable prices go on rising defying the laws of gravity. And if he goes to study the mechanics of flying rockets, he will be brought harshly down to earth, by slipping on a banana peel on the way. I know of a public library in Thane, which is located near a fish market. It is a good place to study about the edible aquatic life and also the local names of all such fish. But then you should be able to survive the olfactory onslaught on your senses. And you can also learn about haggling of the highest order. Another library that I know of is situated bang inside a cloth market. Here you get good knowledge of the traditional Indian sarees like Kanjivaram, Paithani, Banarasi, etc. and the latest trends in fashion industry. To keep things short, there is no need of such buzzers near our public libraries since the job is done very efficiently by the very fact that they are located in real public spaces. One must say too efficiently, since the patrons too keep far away from them.

Yatindra Tawde