Thursday, February 19, 2009

Twenty Five things

Everyone's doing it, and thanks to M, so must I. Except that this blog is my open book left with few new quirks to report.

So instead, here are twenty five things about Vipul that I haven't blurted in the past already:

1. He can't tell lyrics in an English song. He can hear it a hundred times and still not know its name because he has no idea what the singer's reciting. Once you spell out the lyrics for him he will catch them, but left to his own devices it may as well be my relatives conversing with him in punjabi, which too he cannot understand, but nods his head to.

2. He doesn't sing if anyone can listen. Not even when he knows the lyrics. Not even under threat of celibacy. Ever. The only time I heard him sing was when he went along with American Pie while driving the car and didn't realise the phone was on and I could hear him at the other end.

3. He thinks Blackberry is a menace to personal life. Oh wait! He thought that before he got his own. Now he thinks it's a dinner course.

4. He has no sense of direction on the roads. And no intention of asking around for the correct route. Did I mention he is a man?

5. He can brew coffee. He can set ice. He can boil water after you remind him how the gas works. And that's the the whole of his cooking repertoire.

6. He thinks "you're looking nice today" spoken with a nod of the head is a compliment.

7. He thinks candles are mushy things we shouldn't douse the house in when guests visit. He prefers lamps. And tubelights.

8. He remembers numbers effortlessly - the cost of an Infosys share, his waist size when he was in school, the price of the speakers he plans to buy next, ...

9. However, if the number occurs in a date, he will forget it faster than a Goldfish.

10. He thinks women are a different species that he can never understand. So he doesn't try.

11. He has more T-shirts in his cupboard than I do. And his six pairs of shoes are more expensive than my forty.

12. He looks forward to getting gifts though he insists he doesn't want any.

13. He hates the colour purple.

14. He is a dog-person. and a cat-person. and a bird-person. and a kid-person.

15. He won't kill an insect if he can throw it out alive outside the house.

16. He thinks National Geographic Hi-definition channel is too cool. Nevertheless, after office hours, he prefers seeing saas-bahu to documentaries.

17. His holiday goal centers around white sandy beaches. Not brown. Not beige. Not golden. Pure White Powdery sand is what he wants, and he is very fussy about it.

18. He is even more fussy about the loos he's willing to use.

19. And he's most fussy about the coffee he's willing to drink: freshly brewed, full bodied, low acidity. Everything else he will crib about with the pain of having seen Sachin getting out at duck.

20. He loves cricket.

21. He loves Apple.

22. He loves movies. The cornier, the better. If Katrina Kaif became a director and made something called "Dil kehta hai, like, something something" where all the actors were essentially guest appearances, he would go buy the DVD. Original DVD.

23. He is extremely embarrassed to be seen indulging in vanity. So if he wants an expensive hair cut, or needs an fancy moisturizer, or horror of horrors, a facial, he makes me buy the stuff or book the appointment, and tells his mom that I coerced him into it.

24. His hairstylist suspects he is balding. He suspects it's my fault.

25. He once had a moustache. He once had braces. He had them both at the same time. I suspect I would have fallen for him even then.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

A new address

My husband is a smart guy.

I don't say this because he married me, which of course is one the prime indicators of his smartness. It is because he divorced Citibank about two months ago, which unless you are in the US Government, you'll recognize as being an extraordinarily prescient move.

Consequently, we are no longer in the towering urbanity of Hong Kong. We are in Singapore, where you can see the sun and the sky, where you can breathe in clean air, where clouds line the horizon and joybirds hop on sidewalks, where the roads are lined with so many trees and so much greenery that you expect to find a cow crossing your path at the very next bend...

What you will actually find, of course, is a speed camera.

But before that camera, there will come a warning that there's a speed camera ahead.

Surprising fact number 1. All speed cameras on Singapore's roads are preceded by a warning that there's a speed camera ahead.

Don't ask me way. I know the answer but it is boring legalese about entrapment.

The point I'm making is that Singapore's not so impossibly, unlivably crazy about rules and regulations as the urban legends that were recited to me suggest. Living here, I can attest that - wild birds, stray cats and jaywalking, all exist in Singapore. Speeding occurs, littering happens. And as is the norm elsewhere in the world, should you leave them behind, i-phones will be stolen.

Of course, if you really do something brazen, such as starting a political party or picking up the latest fad of throwing shoes at dignitaries, you will be in trouble. You can run and you can hide - but the island is so small that you will be found in no time at all.

Surprising fact number 2. Singapore's so tiny that each building has its own pin code. And when I say building, I don't mean housing estate. I mean that my condo has four towers and each tower has its own pincode.

This is great news for people like me, who when bullied into playing race cars at video parlors, steer in the manner of black&white movie stars by constantly turning the wheel left and right even when the road is straight.

We, the people, no longer need to learn driving. Instead we can simply hop on a bicycle to reach distant destinations. Or just jog to them. Or simply order takeaway tandoori chicken by shouting from rooftops.

I believe I am going to enjoy living here.