It’s That ‘No Ideas For Her Birthday Gift’ Time Of The Year Again

A relationship between a man and a woman has evolved through ages. From the stone age of hitting the woman on the head and carrying her on a shoulder into the cave, to the current scenario of buying a woman a drink and then spending the next two hours making a complete fool of yourself to eventually reach KLPD (which when translated into Hindi is ‘No means No’), the society has come a long way. Women have made the concept of relationship beautiful by nurturing it with their beauty and affection, while men have contributed equally with their charm and excuses to sneak out for beer and live sports. To be brutally honest, women are better at most things in a relationship, and the list of things men are better at is limited to peeing while standing up and changing tubelights, in that order. Women are also better at celebrating a relationship in style, including giving gifts. 

Let me explain why giving a gift to your partner is an art and men are accomplished artists the same way Arvind Kejriwal is an artist at not putting his foot in his mouth. A gift is a great relationship tool. Of course it brings a smile on your partner’s face and brings you two closer, but more importantly it is a brilliant future argument winner and a get-out-of-jail-free card for next few weeks. Depending on the gesture, the surprise element and (though not applicable to me because #GareebForever) the budget, the gift can get you anything from a hug to completely forgetting that one incident where she accidentally pressed ‘x’ on your chrome browser and then went through your web history with a ghastly ‘how will I ever look at him again’ expression. 

The real reason I am writing this is because I am looking for a gift for special someone’s birthday, and time is passing by at the speed of more than one ‘aur kuchh nahi to uske naam ka tattoo banwa lunga’ thoughts a day. It’s not that I haven’t thought of any other ideas, but mostly I have ended up shooting down my own ideas, frankly because I am am idiot and have neither fashion nor common sense. 

1. Bag.

A bag from a renowned fashion label was one of the earliest ideas that I had, and I ditched it for two reasons. Firstly, I was sure that my choice in handbags would have been awful, and she wouldn’t have used the bag to carry around and flaunt daily, rather it would have been put to use in a similar way my mother has used one of her bags to keep all my old report cards and certificates of participation and that one newspaper with an ad they had put to wish me a happy birthday. So basically I mean Raddi collection. Secondly, the pricing of such brands is always so confusing, because on one extreme you risk making her feel materialistic, and on this end you are a cheapster as you always know you are.

2. Dress.

A dress is a great gift as long as your contribution to it is limited to paying for it. Otherwise too, there will be questions like ‘Is it too short?’, ‘Do I look fat in it?’ and ‘Do you think it is inappropriate for the occasion?’, and the answer to any such question HAS TO BE a breathless rendition of NoBabyYouLookLovelyAllOtherGirlsAreNothingInFrontOfYouMaiAgarKahunTumsaHaseenKaynaatMeNahinHaiKahin. In addition to that, the pricetag on a few dresses can cause bladder dysfunction or exacerbate asthma. 

3. Jewellery

I’ll get straight to the point here. Silver is not impressive. Gold is too expensive. Platinum is actuaBWAHAHAHA MAZAAK CHAL RAHA HAI KYA? Diamond is forever but I don’t want to give any long term ideas to her right now. I may be made to suffer for this particular sentence, but this year I have PM Modi and his demonetization scheme to put the blame on, so I am safe with respect to that. Last year I went with the excuse “sharm hi ek aurat ka asli gehna hota hai” and hence now you know why I have a scar on my forehead.

Finally, very seriously, I request all of you to please suggest me some idea for a gift so that I can get a guilt-free pass for a few weeks. I vow total secrecy for your idea if you want, and your idea shall die with me, provided it is not so bad that it gets smashed on my head instead. Else I will have to go with the tattoo idea, and we know how that turned out the last time. Remember, your idea can change my life. Jo de uska bhi bhala, jo na de…

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A Few Made-up Problems That Demonetization May Or May Not Solve

Last week, the prime minister of our nation did something that India wouldn’t forget for days to come. He gave the slowest emotional speech humanly possible, and making TV soap producers realise that public could actually sit patiently for just two sentences. Our PM said that “he left his house and family for the service of our nation”, and the statement had something for everyone. The statement had motivation for BJP politicians, emotion for common man, and hypertension for Arvind Kejriwal. Also, before that speech, PM Modi demonetised 500 and 1000 rupee note, justified it as trying to kill black money in possession of the people who had stacked up hordes of liquid money, and now could lubricate those stacks and deposit them in a safe, warm and damp part of their body because no bank would take them without sending an income tax team behind them, which may put their hand up their safe, warm and damp part of body to look for more black money. 

The demonetization move has received a mixed response as while the middle class has hailed the decision and offered patience and support, CM Kejriwal and his party has welcomed the move in a new style called ‘Peet Peet ke chhati syaapa paana’, learnt in recent times while campaigning in Punjab. Anyways, this is not a post to give an argument about whose side I am on (it’s Captain America, by the way), but this is a post that will make you realise the greater good that this scheme may achieve. A few things that had traumatised us for so long, may no longer exist now. Here is a list of things that may become extinct after this move:

1. Over-loaded honeymoon albums

In simpler times of arranged marriages, also called as the 70s decade November Sale by a few parents who had 5 or more daughters, newly-weds went to honeymoon and came back either pregnant or utterly disappointed, and no one ever got to know the details. Now, people go to exotic places and celebrate the joining of two souls in holy matrimony at a rate of clicking and uploading of up to 200 honeymoon photos a day on Facebook. No wonder parents are worried about the new feature Facebook Live, because obviously they expect their kids to avoid newly-wed honeymoon videos on facebook, because xvideos has a better compilation and every kid should know that. 

With demonetization, the affordability may come down and those exotic locations may get replaced by Indian places like Goa, Shimla, and may be even (in a few cases involving adventure-freaks) Wasseypur. Now Goa is not a place to click and put 200 photos of, because half of Delhi’s single guys have just come back from there, are there right now, or are planning a trip next month, and a honeymoon album will not look great if it has a group of men with paunches and beer photo-bombing almost every photo. It is better to just go there and come back either pregnant or disappointed.

2. Punjabi wedding Haute Couture 

I like almost everything about Punjabi weddings, except two things. One is the look that people give me when I fill my entire dinner plate with shahi paneer, and the other is the brilliant fashion sense of Punjabi aunties who, by the time their local Parlour owner is done with them, look like Bappi Lahiri went crazy with Shahnaz Hussain beauty products. Or just with Shahnaz Hussain herself. I am not putting up an allegation that all the jewellery and make-up and clothes has been bought using black money. I am saying that I want to include fake-diamond studded footwear in that list as well. With demonetization, hopefully we will see the fall of over-priced designer sarees, also known as a middle class father’s pain-in-the-ass, and resurgence of ‘saree me aisa defect hai jo aapko dhundne se bhi dikhayi nahi dega’ ads, simply because I miss them. Pure nostalgia. 

3. Over-hyped KLPD movies on Diwali

I love bollywood, and I like festive times. So, I am one of those guys who always get super-excited about all the big-budgeted superstar releases around Diwali. Let me give you a quick recap, as the last six years’ Diwali releases have been Ra.One, Jab Tak Hai Jaan, Son of Sardar, Krissh3, Happy New Year, Prem Ratan Dhan Payo and this year’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil and Shivaay. So, in the past six years, on Diwali, I have seen SRK as a character of a cheap video-game, an army man with unexplainable memory issues but without awesome tattoos, and a diamond thief who dances for cheap thrills. If that wasn’t enough, we also saw Ajay Devgn play a Sikh character that the entire Sikh community is afraid their kids will grow up into if they watch shows with Navjot Sidhu in it, and then a mountaineer with a Belgian ex-girlfriend, which is as believable as Viveik Oberoi’s role in Krissh3 that made members of Cannes film festival  jury stab themselves in the eye. With black money out, movies will be based on logic and story, rather than Salman Khan’s issues with Neil Nitin Mukesh or that faint hope that Ranbeer Kapoor will rediscover himself, err, like he always does.

These are the actual interests that Modi-haters are trying to protect. PM Modi, if you can promise me my dream of a nation with simpler weddings and better Diwali movies and a limit of three public honeymoon photos per couple on Facebook, then I am ready to support you with the only superpower that I have: the patience to stand in any queue for hours and arguing personally with anyone who cuts through the line. I will be your mitr Modiji. I will be your mitr. 

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Puberty: It Was A Tough Time For All Of Us

In every man’s life, there comes a time when he realises that life will never be care-free again. A time to be afraid of. A time when you know that female gender will control your life from then on. That time is when a man gets married. 93% of married men say that time just before getting married was the most scary/unnerving time of their lives (Rest 7% were seated next to their wives during the survey). But this post is not about marriage. This post is about an event that nullifies the chances of a guy getting married. This post is about puberty, or as my guy friends called it, ‘Bro FTV pe kaam ki chiz kitne baje aati hai?‘. Puberty is an awkward time of life where guys develop secondary sexual characters(Medical terminology for #FeelingHorny), more awkwardness with respect to opposite sex and a steep drop in self-esteem similar to Saif Ali Khan’s career after Hum Tum.

Secondary sexual characters, for ease of explanation, can be divided into two categories: Inside underpants and outside underpants. Since this is a family-friendly blog, and I’ve already used the term sexual too many times and might be heading towards a domestic fight, let’s keep the discussion about characters outside pants. 

Sudden spurt in height and light moustache growth made me look like the senile retired uncle  of the colony who doesn’t return children’s tennis ball once it lands in his house. (Fun Fact: such uncles are the number one reason why children under 14 yrs of age learn abusive language). It meant I finally grew taller than girls of my class, because they had their spurt 2-3 years ago and it had been awkward standing next to them since. The newly grown eye-sore moustache became the 3rd top reason for the opposite sex to not talk to me, right after a shapeless nose and an exceptional dim-wittedness in anything other than NCERT curriculum. 

Perhaps the only thing that made the sudden flooding of the body with hormones slightly tolerable was the discovery of Porn. Of course the dial-up internet back then sucked big time, hence it was considered a success if a desibaba photo got downloaded before completion of two premature you-know-whats. Hence it was impossible to watch a video, though it made little difference because the DSLRs back then were known as Nokia 6600: poor on quality, though high on creativity. 

Puberty completely changed the classroom scenario of the healthy gender dispute. While we guys went from “we hate girls” to “God please get her to talk to me once”, most of the girls I admired went from “I hate boys” to “I have a boyfriend” in almost no time. It then dawned on me that some of the guys used this time of change to play sports or learn guitar, where as I just gained one and a half foot in height while losing a few kilograms, meanwhile becoming the first person to transform into his own full body X-ray in the process. The seating arrangement changed into a proper co-educational scenario with mixed benches and I was left alone on the last seat still being the target of aluminium foil balls after lunch. 

I spent the last 3-4 years of school trying to avoid the class bully’s armpit, getting braces to try and work my luck with this face, and trying to come up with jokes and be funny while maintaining an image that I didn’t care about female company because I was too much into studies, though the scenes at lunch break made me look more poor and pathetic than Suniel Shetty in, well, every Suniel Shetty movie ever. Like every bollywood fan, I hoped for a miracle that in future, I’ll finally grow into someone better looking and successful, and right now, as I look into the mirror while knowing that I still am a few years and possibly another degree or two away from job security, I can proudly say this. 

“Shit! Ch****a kat gaya yaar.

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