2 minute noodles…a recipe for divorce

The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, so goes an old saying. After the first flush of love…nay, after the first lust of love is over, what remains is how a couple look after their roost. While the man is expected to master the intricacies of shopping and help about at home, he expects his wife to look after their children as well as the child in him. Cooking delicious meals for the family is a part of the essential skills which a woman should possess. Of course, nowadays she is also expected to add to the family coffers by going out to work. That’s why women are the goddesses of multitasking.  But that is subject for another writeup.

A man married a suitable girl. She was a complete package, pleasant looks and good education. But what clinched the deal for him was the added information shared by his would-be father-in-law that she was a fast cook; that she could conjure up tasty meals within 2 minutes. Since he was a busy person he was impressed, now that he wouldn’t have to wait for the meals to be prepared.

On their first day together, after a night of frolicking under the sheets, she prepared the first meal, a breakfast in literally 2 minutes. A bowl of noodles! Being totally satiated in the night the man indulged his wife, thinking that she must be tired due to their antics. Then the fun began. A bowl of noodles followed for lunch and rounded off with yet another bowl of noodles for dinner.  And then the cycle continued every day.

Once the passion of early married life evaporated, the man was finally struck by realization. His wife was a one-trick pony. The secret of 2 minute meals was noodles and that’s all that she could prepare  to feed him.

Since she could no longer find a way to his heart through his stomach, he made his decision. He filed for a divorce. To his surprise and relief, the judge too believed in 2 minutes justice and the divorce was granted in a jiffy.

Last heard, the man is looking for a new wife and his only condition is for her to be a great cook serving a variety to the satisfaction of his culinary tastes.

Yatindra Tawde

 

They came, they saw…they burped

They arrived at the boundary.

This was the same area where their forefathers had frolicked through the wild foliage.

Now they saw nothing but a tall structure with small openings which the current dwellers referred to as windows and galleries. The couple was used to seeing the current dwellers, though similar in appearance but having colourful skins, in the pond premises nearby. The current dwellers were curious about them and fed them random food. And the couple and their friends welcomed these colourful dwellers due to easy availability of food.

However the couple was most curious about the tall structures and dreamed of raiding them.

Thus today they were at the boundary where they faced their first hurdle. Upon reaching the boundary 3-4 ferociously barking dogs welcomed them with a cacophonic chorus. But the couple wasn’t afraid for they had full confidence in their own gymnastic abilities. For, in no time, they had crossed their first hurdle, though it was hurtful to their ears.

The next hurdle was some tall dweller in drab skin, carrying a long stick. They teased him by flicking the cap over his head and then showing him their behind. As he ran behind them, the pipes on the tall structure came to their rescue and soon they had climbed to the fifth floor. For a brief while, they let their legs and tail dangle over the parapet and enjoyed the view of the pond, from that height. They had reached so high for the first time in their lives and one of them started having a vertigo induced swoon. He tried to grab hold of something and in his haste, managed to push a window open. That made his partner curious about the inside of the dwelling and he jumped up to look into the window.

He gestured his partner to come and have a look and both of them were itching to enter inside. This went on for a few moments when they looked inside and glanced at each other and then again looked inside.

When, for a longest time they saw no movement, one of them jumped inside with the other quickly following behind.

Their sharp nose and eager eyes darting across the room, quickly espied…FOOD!

MANGOES!

For the next few moments all hell broke loose as a lot of mangoes were consumed in a wild frenzy, the skin ripped off violently.

Soon they got tired of the dark, stuffy surrounding inside and made their way out of the same window, feeling the air flowing through their fur. They occupied their favourite space on the parapet and…burped.

Friends, that’s what happens when you live close to a wood. You never know which one of your wilderness friends would pay you an unwanted visit. It can be your tree dwelling cousins like the ones in the above story, sometimes it’s the turn of slithering serpents and rarely the graceful cats come looking for street dogs.

The human species experiences such hair-rasing events all across the world with the boundaries getting blurred on an increasing basis.

Yatindra Tawde

A cultured job

The quartet reached the planned destination for the night. While they were fully prepared with all the paraphernalia required for the job, they had also readied the other equally important kit.

Two of them stood on the road, facing in opposite directions. They were the lookouts, whose job was to warn of any upcoming dangers, while the other two took out the lock cutter. With a mighty heave the lock was broken and no one had seen them do it. Taking that as a sign of good luck, they thanked themselves on thinking about the Almighty before embarking on a new task. Surely, He was the one who had manipulated the stars in their favour.

The shutter was opened and with a quick glance in all directions, all four rushed inside, pulling the shutter down behind them. Sitting down with their heads bowed, they uttered a quick prayer. One of them reached into the rucksack they had brought and out came a photograph of a deity which was placed on a desk, with great reverence. Then, out came a spear, a lock cutter, keys, and assortment of other equipment. These were placed before the deity’s photo. Then another reached into his pockets and out came agarbatti, matchsticks, etc. The agarbatti was tucked into the holder, the dhoop was lighted and they started praying in unison. After applying tikka on each other’s forehead, they prostrated themselves in front of the deity.

Once the blessings were taken, they finally got down to do the job at hand.

The next morning, the owner of the financial institution bent down to open the shutters, he got the shock of his life. For, the locks outside were broken. Upon going inside he found the lockers open and gold and cash was gone. In front of the lockers a moustachioed deity smiled back at him from a photo. A spear kept on a desk pointed at him menacingly. A paper lay on the desk. “Don’t try to find me. It won’t be good”, it said. With shaking, sweating palms,  the owner reached for the telephone. “Hello, Police”.

Friends, this isn’t my imagination working on overdrive. It happens only in India, where before commencing any work, we bow before the Almighty. It seems, the robbers were very culturally informed, if not anything else. Last known, they are yet to be traced.

Yatindra Tawde

Valuable Coins

I come from an era when 5 paisa coins used to fetch a few candies in my childhood. Coins ranging from 1 paisa to Rs. 1 were always lying in a small purse in the Godrej cupboard. Come the 90’s and coins upto 25 paise started disappearing from circulation. 50 paise coins met the same fate in 2000’s. Come 2022 and there are all indications that the time is up for 1 rupee coins. How wrong I was.

State of Tamil Nadu. City Salem.

A van drives into the compound of a high end bike showroom. A man gets off the van and enters the showroom. He meets the salesman and selects his dream bike. A bank agent stationed in the showroom approaches our man, offering a loan. Our man brushes him off, saying that he would buy the bike with his hard earned cash in one go. The happy salesman guides our man to the cash counter. Our man makes his offer. The cashier’s jaw drops to the floor. So does the salesman’s.
No way, they say.
It’s my way or the highway says our man.
The Manager has a word with our man. Then he relents. For the first time since he came into the showroom, our man smiles. He shouts for his friends. The friends get down from the van; one opens the van door. A wheelbarrow comes out. Two other friends start loading it. With 1 rupee coins. There are thousands, nay, lacs of coins and they are unending. Finally the van is emptied.
The store Manager is sweating. He deputes one cashier…then another. Then he requests our man and his friends to help. They oblige. That way, our man is quite considerate.
Thus, our man made news with his unique purchase and made a viral YouTube video as an added bonus.

Yatindra Tawde
 

A step dragged

First published on ArtoonsInn

His face contorted into a grimace and he went still suddenly. One shoulder drooped while the other touched his ear. One leg stretched sideways and then he dragged his other leg towards the first without bending it. And just like a child rubs his chocked-up nose with the back his palm, he gestured similarly near his throat.

His bedridden grandmother watched all this from her cot, horror writ large on her crinkled face.

“Ohh…my poor Bunnu. Paralysis…he…he is paralysed. Help! Bunnu Ki maa…please, oh please come here fast. Bunnu is getting paralysis attack. Come fast”, she screamed at the top of her voice.

Supriya, Bunnu’s mother, who was cutting Bhindi, cut her own finger in her hurry to get up and rush into the bedroom. She put her finger into her mouth to stop the blood flow, thinking that her mother-in-law is getting a paralysis attack. But no, it cannot be, nobody would announce their own paralysis to the world at the top of their voice. It’s not biologically possible. But nothing is beyond the old witch, she thought to herself. Then she remembered mother-in-law mentioning Bunnu and she froze. What has he got into, this time. She remembered the last time he had come home howling in pain, his hand bent in the opposite direction. It had cost time and lots of money to set it right.

When she barged into the bedroom she saw her MIL sitting upright in the cot. The witch lives, she thought to herself regretfully. Then she saw her Bunnu rolling on the floor with laughter. She had one mind to throw whatever was in her hand at Bunnu, but then she remembered that she was carrying her Bhindi cutting knife and controlled herself.

“What has come over you, Maa? Why did you shout so? Do you know how petrified I was? And you Bunnu? Why are you laughing like a madman?”, Supriya rattled off her questions like a machine-gun.

“Oh Maa. It was hilarious. I was dancing the Pushpa step and Badi Maa had the look of pure horror on her face and then she shouted. Oh Badi Maa, you are so cute. I love you.” And he embraced his grandmother warmly.

The grandmother just shrugged in mock anger and turning her face away from him said, “Is this how a grandchild treats his grandmother? You act paralysed and ask me to remain calm? How can I remain calm if I think that you are having some serious medical problem?”

Then turning to him and scrunching up her nose she said, “And you call this a dance. You should have seen Bhagwan dance. So graceful, so cute…what are you looking at me like that. Bhagwan was the greatest Matinee hero. You know…”

And so Supriya left the two blessed souls exchanging their generational anecdotes to attend to her cut finger and to be cut Bhindi.

Folks, this might be the scenario in more than one household in India which is currently in the throes of a Telugu language movie and more specifically, a song in that movie.

Yatindra Tawde

 

 

The Rampwalk

 First published on ArtoonsInn

The name is Rocky, you must have heard about me. I am a famous runner and last year’s winner of the annual races which take place near Pune. In fact I have won these races three years in a row.

When I enter the arena the crowd goes berserk with whistles and claps. I make their adrenaline flow. I am just itching to be at the races this year too, wearing my favourite silk clothes, lovingly woven for me by my mother.

But hey! What is this I hear? The races this year are being canceled just because of some wave! Guys, this is Pune, no wave can reach so far inland. But then the authorities who give the permissions are serious. They don’t want any deaths due to waves, they say. The race organizers are exasperated.  But their hands are tied and they are forced to announce the cancelation.

I sulk…but I sulk well. Seeing me sulking in a corner, hardly chewing the cud, my brother Pandurang Patil has a brilliant idea. He knows that I thrive on spectator feedback and his ticking brain comes up with an unique idea. He discusses with the organizers and a day is decided. And my practice starts in preparation for the D-day.

Finally the day dawns. I am bathed from head to toe. The oil massage is a luxury. I enjoy being pampered thus.

Like every year my mother dresses me in the best silks. I enter the arena. As I enter, I look at the camera mounted near the entry and nod my head in acknowledgement, just like brother Pandurang has taught me. In fact it is he, dressed in his best clothes, who is leading me to the arena. I hear whistles and claps though no one can be seen.

A long, clean walkway stretches before me. The walkway is bedecked with flower petals. As all cameras point towards the walkway, Pandurang leads me along the red carpet. I walk majestically behind him, my head held high. As we reach the end of the walkway,  Pandurang turns around. As I follow him, I see other fellow runners,  walking behind me.

Yes, you guessed it right. We are the models on a rampwalk, not seen before in these parts of India. But as they say, there’s always the first time and soon I am declared the winner of the rampwalk competition.

Pandurang is ecstatic with my win, especially since it has fetched him a handsome reward of Rs. 50,000/-

 

Friends, that’s how the annual cattle races were successfully converted to online rampwalk where the bulls walked and everyone enjoyed the gathering online, without crowding at the races, like every year. The  bull owners too were satisfied, especially given the fact that they take these annual races seriously, where preparations start atleast three months in advance.

And what about the bulls, you ask? Well, they moo’ed their way to online glory, without breaking into a sweat.

Yatindra Tawde

Picture credit- Anand Thakur and unsplash.com

When the snake bit

First published on The Hive Publishers

A snake committed sacrilege by biting the Demi-God of millions of Bollywood fans and it became trending news for days together. But the Demi-God overcame this setback, very much like the innumerable larger than life characters he plays with aplomb,  on the silver screen.

It so happened that the Demi-God was visiting his farmhouse, which happens to be his second home, and stumbled upon the snake enjoying the cozy abode in the Hero’s absence. Being the hero that he is, he decided to take matters into his own, capable hands instead of calling ‘Friends of reptiles’ who specialize in catching such vagabond reptiles and releasing them into fast depleting jungles. The Hero, being inexperienced in such matters, fumbled with the slithering snake, which bit him not once but thrice. And hopefully it managed to survive this love bite. There is a huge debate going on, whether it was poisonous or not. As per the Hero himself, it was of poisonous orientation.

Meanwhile, some four-legged creatures were found celebrating this unfortunate incident in their parched jungle but the celebrations were short-lived as the jungle authorities cracked down on them by releasing the video of the Hero’s triumphant release from the hospital, waving and throwing air kisses to his umpteen fans.

Last heard, the four-legged creatures have gone into hiding, staying far away from the windshield vision of the Hero.

Yatindra Tawde

Photo credit – David Code, unsplash.com

A Robber in lake city

First published on The Hive Publishers

When you see pigeons near your balcony or window, indulging in indecent behaviour or generally being noisy, your first reaction is to shoo them away. They are also known for creating abstract designs on the ledges and windows and you don’t want to waste your work-from-home valuable time in erasing their deeds. In addition to being gross, in these times of reduced immunity, you don’t want another reason for the spread of diseases.

In the good old days the pigeons were not seen as pests. They were said to be messengers of love. Why, Bhagyashree from ‘Maine Pyar kiya’, sent her first love note to her Saajan, Salman, using this very kabootar (vernacular for pigeon). In it, the pigeon hogged the camera in an entire song. Coming to think of it, Bhagyashree didn’t want it to stay with herself much longer,  but entreated it to ‘Ja, ja, ja…’ .

Pigeons were also used as spies or undercover agents in the wars of olden times and some of them enjoyed Knighthood too.

Recently I came to know that in the former city of lakes (I say former because nowadays the lakes froth with pollutants which don’t look pretty), the pigeon indulged in crime. Or were made to indulge in crimes perpetrated by one extra-imaginative criminal.

He bought some innocent looking pigeons to his targeted neighborhood. During day time, he released them. As is their second nature, they flew and settled on the balconies in the neighborhood. Our extra-imaginative friend would then pay a visit to such flats and ask for his escaped pet. The flat owners would let him in to collect his pet and this was their undoing. While being in the house he would scan for expensive appliances and soon the flat owners were poorer by a few lacs.

Last heard, the said criminal is behind bars and the pigeons (but nobody’s pets) have been added to a burgeoning population of their own species in the former city of lakes.

Yatindra Tawde

A match made in kitchen

It is said that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Since I am not a foodie, I don’t understand this statement. Man always likes ‘Maa-ke-hath-ka-khaana’ more, more so, after marriage. Though, of course, he is not in a position to admit it openly, for obvious reasons.

Ricardo is waiting for his wife to serve him hot, tasty rice like she always does. He just loves her for that. In fact, he married her impressed by this quality of hers. That and the fact that she was very obedient. And he could brag to his friends that his wife was so hot.

 

Four days gone and Ricardo is feeling restless. Have I rushed into marriage,  he thinks to himself. All the qualities which endeared her to him, now seem to be a bane.

She can only cook rice, however hot it might be. Zilch variety there. Yes, she is obedient,  but her obedience is only if he asks her to cook rice, not for anything else.  Yes, she is hot, but only when she is cooking rice. As soon as the rice is done, and he has had his meal, she is back to being cold and going off to sleep.

So by the time his dinner is finished, Ricardo has made his decision. He decides to divorce his wife of a full 4 days.

This story is not a figment of my imagination but a real one which took place in Indonesia recently. After it had grabbed some space in newspapers and the omnipresent social media, it was revealed that the man in Indonesia had married his rice cooker in an elaborate ceremony because of its qualities of cooking great meals for him whenever he felt like having rice, without making much noise except perhaps some whistles. But within 4 days he divorced it because it never cooked anything else. And he did all this only to grab some social media fame.

 

What ridiculous gimmicks are being resorted to nowadays, to grab likes and visibility on social media. What has life come to? And people are actually spending valuable time on writing about such ridiculous happenings in their blogs. Like me for instance… Yatindra Tawde