‘Fine, Fine!’

This is a story I love telling. I have fought with people just so I can tell this story my way simply because it is that funny. When I meet new people, I tell them this story and wait to see if they laugh. If they do, we become best friends. If they don’t, I sit quietly and judge them.

Many years ago, maybe not so many, because it is in color and not black & white in my head, a man and a woman were deeply in love. It was a happy love, undisturbed even by an ex wife who one day called our hero for a favour. The ex was a writer and needed help with selecting readings for her book launch. Our hero being the kind man he is agreed to meet her for coffee scheduled an hour before he was to meet our heroine, the girlfriend.

They met at famous coffee shop which we will call K. The ex who came with a couple of girls who are important to the story only because they are girls, decided to go somewhere quieter because K was noisy.

It is at this point, I must introduce a man who is responsible for all the giggles this story gave me. Outside K, a man named Abu helped park cars. He knew our hero quite well so when he went over to say hello to him, he witnessed the hero being ambushed by the ex and the girls. Hero couldn’t say hello to Abu because he was being hauled by the women half way across the road. An hour later, after the favor had been done, hero returns to K to meet girlfriend who has only just arrived. They were only just exchanging hellos when Abu steals the moment and appears on the scene and utters these words

“Maydam, aap nahi thi, maine saab ko hi bola lekin who kuch ladkiyon ke saath bhaga jaa raha hain, bhaga jaa raha hai”

(Madam, you weren’t here. When I tried to say hello to him, I saw him running off with some girls)

It is at this point that the hero’s face falls flat to the ground like meteors to earth. In a hurry he tries to explain what just happened before the face in front of him was going to balloon up into an even bigger balloon. After the last full stop to his story had been put, the heroine gathers all her face into her two eyebrows, raises them and heaves them down to her breasts and hisses “Fine, Fine!” jumps into an auto and leaves.

Our hero’s face by now is just a hole. It is difficult to say if the hole was because of the open mouth or it was how his face was going to look for the rest of his life. Nobody really cares what Abu did after this. I don’t know if he left soon after he had dropped the bomb or left after the hero’s monologue. All I know is the hero went inside, had chai and left.

Plot calling the kettle black

Kitty’s life had just changed 

I am going to write a short story about a girl whose life is just about to change 

The eagle is a majestic bird 

I have never been so happy in my life 

How do people find things to write about on days like these? Do I write about how happy I am to be 25 and free? Do I write about the relationship that was stable and different only moments ago? Do I write about more conversations overheard at Parisian Cafe? Do I write about my fears and how they keep changing?

I am scared about a lot of things. I am scared about life and the faint chance that I may not be able to live it the way I want to. The villains who feature in this plot are my father, the boyfriend and the family, largely.

Plot I

A lot of violence makes itself appear dramatically in these plots. The father becomes obsessed with using his power as the father to control rebellious daughter’s life; tries to get her married to some IAS officer who is, as the plot demands middle aged and supports Modi. Daughter fights. Father fights harder. Slaps her. Daughter escapes. Teary phone calls from grieving mother move her into making swift negotiations. But eventually she moves out and has a life of her own.

Plot II

Daughter has been accepted to some university exchange program and she is on her way to become the greatest writer of her generation. It’s miraculously an all expense paid program. Father doesn’t approve, protests strongly, wants daughter to be married off before she leaves home. Daughter runs. Dad and his goons chase daughter in government cars to the airport. They are late, she escapes. After a year of learning and travelling abroad and becoming hot, daughter returns. Dad and goons wait for her at the airport. Dad yanks her to the ambassador car and slaps her. Some really cool women protection service people come to her rescue and get her to file a restraining order against the father.

She moves out, continues to work where she previously did and all is fine.

A sadder alternative plot on days that I wake up with a bad mood always ends with the father or the boyfriend successfully enslaving her.

Plot III

Daughter rebels for as long as she can and finally gives in. She marries the IAS officer and torture ensues. The forgotten feminist in the daughter emerges and she kicks ass. She divorces the chutiya IAS officer and pursues a PhD abroad.

Plot IV (The scariest of all)

Feminist daughter wakes up one morning to realise her life’s been a farce so far, sees a betraying pointlessness in all her rebellions and decides that she has lived her life crazily enough and wishes to get back ‘on track’, you know, wanting a husband and kids and the whole fucking pack. She marries long term boyfriend – moves in with him and his family. Soon,  she quits her job to become good bahu and bestest mommy. One morning, as she stands by the big black gate, holding hubby’s lunch dabba and waiting for him to get his car out, she sees all the housewives on the street doing the same. Realizing the horror, she throws the dabba on her husband’s car and runs screaming back into the house. She divorces the husband, moves into an apartment and pursues independent life.

Such are the plots in my head, this is how they thicken when I am showering or cleaning my goddamn bathroom. If I were to live in my own head, which is what I do most days, I would be a full zombie by now.