Thursday, September 09, 2004

An Evening with the Alphabets

I have made two new friends recently. For the sake of convenience and anonymity I shall call them Alice and Bob. Now Alice is seventeen and Bob is eighteen and they have just started going to college. In a very short time both of them have endeared themselves to me and I look upon them with brotherly affection. They are quite naïve (probably because they are young) and have a lot to learn about the ways of the world and for some odd reason they think I am some kind of a wise old man (just shows how naïve they are).They are also madly in love with each other and for some odd reason I end up becoming the moderator in all their fights (and they fight a lot – perhaps it explains the ‘madly’ part of their love).

Some days back we were all sitting around in the bar of a very up town hotel with a number of other friends. Alice and Bob were on my left. A rather beautiful specimen of the fairer sex, Clarice, was sitting on my right and was jabbering away to glory with Dick (wonder why I gave him that name, maybe because he is one). Every now and then she would turn around, touch my hand and ask me whether I agreed with what she was saying. Since I wasn’t paying any particular attention to what she was saying (because I was busy checking out the butt of an Eleanor standing near the bar counter) I always replied in the affirmative. Watching Eleanor’s butt and answering yes-you-are-absolutely-right to Clarice was soon interrupted by the chipmunks on my left.

Alice was beating the shit out of Bob for having called her a bra-burning-feminist. Now I have been caught in this situation before where a girl was protesting that she was not a feminist. I also happen to know a thing or two about feminism.

The word has been degraded over the decades to a man-hating-children-hating-housewife-hating woman. This is probably due to the negative impact of the second wave feminism of the late sixties when some misguided women decided that the root of all inequality and all evil were men and women who wanted just to be mothers and housewives. But so strong was this movement (still is) that it overshadowed the feminists who were just asking for equal rights for women in all spheres of life. Sadly all feminists (even the ones who still like men and want to have families) are considered to be a part of the misguided feminists.

Some feminists are so deluded that they do not even accept the physical differences between men and women and want to engineer a society where everyone is the same. Thus, a few stories recently have been about schools removing urinals from the boy's bathrooms, and telling the boys they should piss sitting down, like the girls. This is to eliminate the sense of power that boys supposedly have in using their penises to direct urine where they wish. These Americans are absolutely crazy.

So I explained to the two chipmunks that ‘feminism’ wasn’t a profanity and the bra-burning never really happened (it’s an urban legend). Then I went back to admiring Eleanor’s butt and touching Clarice’s hand (by this time I had already downed a number of beers and was in full flow). I also noticed that Dick had lost his perpendicularity (if there is a word like that) to the ground. He was snoring peacefully in one corner.

Now the topic somehow shifted to mythology which happens to be home territory for me. Clarice wanted to know about Pandora. I was feeling quite high by now and was about to achieve one of those rare moments of absolute clarity. My thoughts were being coherently translated to words which were smoothly flowing out of my lips and I was getting higher because I had everyone’s rapt attention.

What followed was my usual comparison of all mythology (Greek, Roman, Indian and Biblical) and how there was this underlying theme running in all of them, that women were the cause of all misery on earth. Though we Indians worship women and consider them (Shakti) superior to even the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh we do have instances in our mythology where women caused strife. Kunti (mother of all Pandavs) for example could have stopped the Mahabharata had she told her sons that Karna was their elder brother. Yudhishthira when told the truth after the war cursed all womanhood with the inability to keep a secret - hence all the gossip. Helen a mere woman caused the Trojan war, Pandora opened the box given to her by the gods and released sorrow, disease and conflict and Eve decided to eat the forbidden fruit (essentially had sex) and got Adam and herself thrown out of the Garden of Eden. Humanity was also cursed with procreation (which isn’t really a curse) and women had to undergo labour pains as a result.

Now there were a lot of women in our group so I went ahead and said something on the lines of – but what are men without women, which brought a smile on Clarice’s face (I hadn’t noticed before, she had a dimple on her left cheek). Bob however was very excited about this whole women-being-the-cause-of-all-misery thing and was also a little drunk. So he went around and told every woman in our group that they deserved labour pains. Most of them forgave him for being young and foolish, but Alice went ahead and knocked the daylights (nightlights, maybe) out of him.

The evening went on like this and we all finally decided to call it a day around one AM. Clarice asked me if I could drop her at her house. I was more then happy to oblige and was looking forward to a long romantic drive in my car. Yeah but these things never really happen, do they. Alice and Bob had come to this party with me and I had to leave them as well. Both of them had sorted out their differences by now and were in a very lovey-dovey mood. They were also considerably drunk and couldn’t stand properly. So I dragged the two of them to my car and shoved them in the back seat. Clarice sat with me on the front seat and we started out.

The talk revolved around men and our apparent immaturity. Alice and Clarice were putting on a good offence and I was busy driving and Bob, well he was being himself and was shouting at the top of his voice that he was all grown up and was very mature. Suddenly Alice quipped that Bob hadn’t even bought his first pack of condoms. Now this was hitting below the belt and hurt Bob deeply. “Find a chemist, find a pharmacy immediately and I’ll show her that I can buy a pack of condoms”, shouted Bob.

Perhaps it was the booze; perhaps it was the fact that Clarice was looking at me with those pretty eyes and luscious lips; perhaps it was that by helping Bob I wanted to make a stand for the weaker sex (men, of course). So we went around the city, at that god forsaken hour, on a wild goose chase (rather a wild condom chase) in search for an open drugstore. It was wild; it was fun; it was extremely stupid.

We finally found one open. So Bob stepped out of the car to prove his manhood and fell down. I had to get out and carry him to the front door of the drugstore. “Wouldn’t you come in with me”, said Bob. I could imagine the Horrorz (Ravi, Suds and Nijith) saying –man that is sooo gay, two guys buying condoms. Gay or not I had to help Bob in picking up the last remaining shreds of his manhood. So we went in, me holding Bob, and stood there for sometime. Bob tried. He definitely did. “Can I ... err… can I … ahmmm … can I have some Chlormints.”

“Dumb ass”, I thought and gave him another chance. This was getting out of hand. The girls were sounding the car horn as if proclaiming their victory. Something had to be done. So I turned my back towards the car and told the chemist to forget about the chlormints and give me a pack of Kamasutra. This guy didn’t even bat an eyelid, as if this happened to him daily (it probably did). “Pack of 3 or 10”, he said. “Ten”, exclaimed Bob out of nowhere and looked up at me. I was getting very angry by now so I took the pack of 10, shoved it in Bob’s hand, handed over a 50 and didn’t even take the four bucks change the chemist owed me.

We went back to the car. Bob was now showing off to Alice: “Naaa na naaa na naaa, I got the condoms, I got the condoms”. Alice seemed very proud of him and they again went back to their lovey-dovey mood and before long I could see that they had dozed off. They looked very cute, like a pair of chipmunks. I laughed to myself. Clarice just said, “You are my hero” and gave me a peck (Dictionary – to kiss briefly and casually) on the cheek. We needed a drink and so decided to hit the bar again. That was one long memorable night. For the perverts - all I have is a peck on the cheek to remember the evening by, more on Clarice later.

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