September 27, 2012

The Mid Twenties

...are an existential time.

Everyone around you is constantly whining about their job, their love life and not having enough money.

A year ago, they were whining about their degree, their love life and not having enough money.

And while it's a universally accepted fact that anyone with any sense at all would hugely prefer working to studying, the grass usually is greener on the other side. When we were studying for the course (and curse) known as CA Final, all we wanted was a job. Now that we have jobs, we reminisce about the awesomeness of being able to stay home in pajamas and read a large book about Corporate Law in study leave. The fact that this is worthy of reminiscence, reflects on how completely lame our lives have been.

What's most interesting though is the number of times you get to hear "Why am I here?" and "I wasn't meant to do this." It's a fascinating insight into what people seem to think of themselves. Saying "I don't want to do this" is completely understandable, but you weren't meant to do this? Your incredible talents in early life misled you into thinking that coding was beneath you? Or all babies come predestined with a career which ideally should have been tattoed on their arms? (Hell of a lot more useful than "Mera baap chor hai", by the way.)

Another somewhat parallel one is "There's got to be more to my life than this rubbish." Of course there is. It's called an evening, a weekend, a movie, sleeping, eating, and making merry with an income. Not some pursuit of a higher goal. At least, not if you willingly chose to vouch sales invoices instead of joining a social entrepreneur. Hordes of fresh-faced students have looked for higher purposes in mainstream careers. Which is just another way of saying "I want to make money but I also want a moral highground." Because the world is a perfect place, isn't it? And let's not kid ourselves. Six months into a high-paying, social-serving, fulfilling job, there will be something to complain about. And the closest thing to a mainstream and social-serving job (medicine) gets its ass whooped by Aamir Khan on national TV. The world really isn't what it used to be.

Apologies to those who think we're all sent here with a purpose, but really, I don't think anyone cares. The idea is to arrive, spend 70 years in some sort of routine, avoid heart disease as long as you can and pop off at some point. The universe really has other things to bother about. If you can manage to have a reasonably good time in those 70 years and not piss people off to the point where you get murdered, you're doing well enough.

One also hopes you don't spend those 70 years working too hard, or watching too much Sex and the City, or letting your kids ring doorbells and run, or obsessively making the same movie 5 times (a la Madhur Bhandarkar), but those are just optional extras.

September 17, 2012

It's not a Car, It's a Caaaaar

Yep. Nissan Sunny. It's not a car. It's a caaaaar.

If you have a radio on your phone, or in your car, you've heard this one. And hundreds of others. Radio ads are fascinating and repulsive, simultaneously, mostly because they make you wonder who writes them and for whom. But just like songs from Jism 2 (or Murder 2? Raaz 2? Raaz 3? They're all interchangeable.), you can't get away from them because at least once an hour, all radio channels have joined hands to play the same thing at the same time. And except on AR Rahman's birthday, this hand-joining is usually for a disastrous song or 5 disastrous adverts.

Like the one that tells you that on Wednesdays, you can call all Uninor customers for close to free. So hurry, make those calls. Yeah, those two calls.

Or the one that pushes you to find out why Vaishnav parivaar wants to get their bahu married.

Or the really shady gold bank that wants you to give them all your gold to get a loan. And they're this close to saying "Come to me... Myyy preciousssssss."

Or the ad that just says "Trust your doctor. Amra remedies, bringing sunshine to every hope." Excuse me? What's your product?

Then there's the bizarre one about a firang (or ABCD?) trying to make sense of Ganeshotsav, but then he has a Nikon Coolpix. End of ad. Go get one. All the hapless hippies have one.

In the midst of the stupid cacophony of shrieky women and overconfident men (and we're not even talking about RJs yet, those guys are insane), is the average frazzled commuter actually expected to buy something? When you catch him in the worst hours of his day, and lie blatantly to him, what results are you getting?