Being Baniya

Went to a grocery store to buy orange juice. Was just picking up the Tropicana orange juice, this store guy came up to me and said.

Store guy: sir what are you doing?

Me: picking juice, WHAT ARE YOU DOING you sneaky bastard?

SG: sir i am here to advice you.

Me: ok, advice me smart ass (i didn’t call him that,  i said this mentally)

SG: Sir buy Sach orange juice, it’s a brand by Sachin Tendulkar and it has a discount.

Me: Not a fan of cricket but you had me at discount. What kind of discount are we talking about.

SG: Ridiculous one sir.

Me: ok but how much? *trying my best to not to show my grin upon hearing the word “discount”*

SG: 30 Rupees sir.

*Tropicana juice out. Sach juice in the basket.*

Moral of the story: No matter how deep you have buried him, No matter how hard you have tried to hide him from the world but the inner baniya will always be there with you. Everyone has a baniya inside. You can hide him and but you can’t kill him. Being baniya.

This is Prakhar Gupta. Have a great day. And if there is a discount sale going on please let me know.

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How to avoid arrange marriage. (For as long as you can)

(Obviously you know all this but still) Let me give you a complete idea on how Arrange marriages are carried out in India especially in my cast, by the way I am Baniya also known as Vaishya (Not prostitute, but yeah if you throw money at a Baniya, he might dance for you a bit but no touching. Touching will cost more). So each caste has a different set of rules in arrange marriage, so in short, arranges marriages are same yet different.

ban-marriage-big

Prerequisite of arrange marriage (Baniya Style)

  • Girl has to be insanely fair, no matter how ugly or fat or dumb the guy is, did I mention ugly?
  • Kundlis must match, everything depend on kundli, your immediate future, your distant future, your kids future, you kid’s kids future, the girl’s future your kid is going to bang in college. EVERYTHING. Your kundli will create a strong ripple in the space time continuum that will change the course of history forever. (Sarcastic, if you are a moron)
  • Dowry(Educated people label it as “Necessary Gifts”)

So the main question is “How to avoid arrange marriage for as long as you can?”

Answers

  1. Act like an idiot in front of the girl’s parents. No matter how insanely rich you are, no parent in this world would give their daughter to an idiot. No wait, they do, baniyas get married all the time
  2. Tell them that you are Reincarnation of freedom fighter Bhagat singh and Azadi is your Dulhan.
  3. After completing graduation, apply for post graduation, after post graduation, apply for PhD. After PhD, apply for double post graduation (I just made that up, you got the point). Good luck finding a girl to match with that much qualification or AGE, because you will be almost 40 by then.
  4. Adopt street dogs, change your name to “Doga” and run around in streets at night with dogs. Tell girl’s parents that you are not the hero this city needs but the hero this city deserves.
  5. Grow a beard and not some puny looking beard, majestic beard of at least 2 months. Name one of your street dogs “Sparta”. Introduce your dog to girl’s parents just like Gerard Butler shouted in 300. THIS IS SPARTA.
  6. Talk about Drainage system and toilets used during Indus Valley Civilization. (True story, this actually happened with me. The weirdest conversation I’ve ever had with a grown up)
  7. Casually talk about your past love affairs, tell any Shahrukh Khan Movie’s story if you never had any affair. Just avoid telling that you stayed in jail for 22 years for Zara or Simran got run over by a train when you were stretching your hands for her from train compartment.
  8. Gargle every time you sip water or cold drink in front of girl’s parents. Spit out some of the liquid from your mouth from time to time.
  9. Tell them that you will legally change the girl’s name to Catwoman. If they ask why, get up dramatically from your seat, walk as slow as possible like a badass you are and whisper in their ears. “CAUSE I AM BATMAN”.
  10. Stop day dreaming, you just can’t avoid the inevitable. Just pray to the old Gods and the new that the kundli matching will take time and you will have enough time to live your life before getting screwed.

This is Prakhar Gupta. Stay safe. Stay single.

A Walk i Don’t want to Remember

National-Museum-of-Natural-History
I always wanted to see the national museum of natural history. As a kid during my summer break I used to visit my maternal uncle’s home in Delhi with my mother and sister, I had a very good bonding with my cousins. Often my mother used to take us to historical monuments and museum. I have been to Science, doll, rail and air force museum during those trips but never to history museum. Even my cousins used to laugh at my suggestion. History for them was full of old and useless stuff.
Everything was planned for 29th July 2014. No office because of Eid. I had the entire day off, my plan was simple. Order a medium size cheese burst pizza for lunch. Eat the whole pizza in one sitting. Loathe myself for the next 2 hours for eating a cheese pizza. Read a book. Watch a movie. Still feel guilty for eating the damn pizza. Sleep. Swear in the name of all the 33 crore Hindu Gods and Goddess that I will never touch pizza for next 6 months.
But the whole plan went kaput when I woke up around 08:30 A.M. on 29th July 2014 sweating all over the bed sheet with no electricity in my house. I checked with my neighbors, they don’t seem to have any issue in their homes; I called my landlord and asked him to get it fixed. I knew that my plan has suffered a severe setback, now I had two options either to sit in house with no electricity which means no fan no ac, this option vaporized as soon as it got materialized or go out for a movie or to a museum, the museum thought hit my childhood memories, I have never been to History museum, I always wanted to go but the plan used to get cancelled, sometime because of work but mostly because none of my friends wanted to visit it and I was too dependent on them but not today, today I am determined and today might be the perfect day.
Within half an hour I was ready for my museum trip, the child inside me was very happy, my childhood dream was about to come true, It took me half an hour metro ride from saket to Rajiv chowk, as per internet, my destination is somewhere on barakhamba Road near FICCI Building. I tried to hire an auto for my destination, no one knew about it, some even tried to correct me, “Bhaiya you are looking for Science Museum, there is no history museum, who wants to see boring stuff”. It was childhood all over again; I shrugged off their negligence & decided to walk my way using GPS which was showing that my destination, The National Museum of Natural History, is just 1.5 km from my current location. I can walk that far easily I thought.
I reached at the exact spot blinking on my screen. As per GPS, my destination is right at the intersection of Tolstoy road & barakhamba Road, wait, this can’t be right, museum can’t be on or under the road, is it in Some other dimension or is it a underground secret museum accessible to only chosen few like hogwarts, the child inside me was kicking again. That was a stupid thought. I was left with two logical conclusions, one is that I am a dimwit who can’t read a GPS map and the other is that the GPS is wrong and it took me 5 minutes to figure out that I am not a dimwit, the GPS was actually wrong. I typed FICCI building in GPS, it was another 1 kilometer walk from my current location.
I finally reached my destination; a big blue board welcomed me followed by unwelcoming glances from the security Guards.
“It’s closed today, don’t you know today is Eid, come tomorrow”, said one of the Guard.
What was I thinking, It’s a public holiday, of course it is suppose to be closed. I overlooked one tiny detail because of too much happiness & anxiety. My mind was so preoccupied in thoughts that it even neglected the humidity in air. The walk back to home was hard & humid. This was the walk I probably don’t want to remember.

Indian Office Before & After Independence

(No Light on Stage)

Scene 1 – Before Independence

[Narration]- We were ruled by Britishers for more than 200 years and though we always frame them as a villain in our history books but forgets to give them credit for our current railway system which we boast to be the second largest of the world or for road network or for communication network ranging from postal service to Telephones. They brought a wave of changes in our country, may be for their benefits but they did made an impact on our lives.

Many Things changed after independence but what didn’t is the work hierarchy.

(Spot light on Soldier, lanky figure, like a victim of malnourishment wearing traditional khaki shirt and half pants with a wooden stick in hand)

[Narration]- This is an employee of a Multi National Company called East India Company earlier he wanted to become a revolutionary, his parents had different opinion, they urged him to get a safer & steady career path, he provides no Benefit to his country, all his services are for the Queen, his foreigner masters and their country, hated by his fellow countrymen, enemy of freedom fighters. No Body likes this guy or his work, not even he likes his work. In case of success, he never gets the credit, in case of failure or job cuts, he is the one who gets sacrificed first.

(Spot light on a subedar, pot bellied and in his 40’s)

[Narration]- This is also an employee of the aforementioned MNC though after years of his service, he is now a part of senior management comprising of mostly Indians, although they are seniors but they have no real power, in every weekly meeting they are thrashed by their masters. Higher command, i.e. the foreigners gives orders to subedars who pass down the commands to the lowest rank soldiers. He is neither ruthless nor adorable. Soldiers have sympathy for him for taking direct fire from higher command but secretly want to take his place.

(Spot light on the higher command, British origins, in the prime of life, energetic and perfectly healthy)

[Narration]- This Gentleman is a foreigner; his primary job is to sit tight on his chair, scold few subedars, and once in a blue moon call for a meeting with the lowly Soldiers of his team, he never laughs with them, he never care for them, in fact for him, soldiers do not exist.

(Spot Light on Some fancy Pants Britisher, Rude and Egoistic with no mercy in his eyes for lowly Indian Soldiers)

[Narration]- This Gentleman is visiting India for the first time to suck Indian Blood or in Delicate words, for Business & he means his business. His Deadlines are tight, tighter than his pants & even if you finish the job with in time, do not except any bonus or perks. For him, it is your duty to finish the job. And the worst part is that even though it was the Soldier who did the entire job but the credit will go to the higher command, higher command in return will say few praises for Subedar and subedar won’t even discuss the success of project with soldier.

Scene 2 – After Independence

 I guess nothing much changed for the regular office goer of our Country. For those who understood the references, thank you for taking time to read & for numb nuts here are the references-
Soldier – Engineer/Executive, which means you.

Subedar – Manager/Team Lead, don’t kid yourself, you can’t be Manager at this age, are you?

if yes then Damn.

High Command – That White/Asian Guy in your office whom you see in his cabin or once in meeting shouting that targets are not matching. Cause targets never match. You can match everyone on Bharat matrimonial but not these bloody targets.

Fancy pants Foreigner – Client, Customer or also lovingly known as blood sucking parasite.

P.S. – oh, By the way, I should have mentioned this earlier, if you are in Public sector, running your own business or have your own practice as a lawyer or doctor or a student, you won’t understand the Pain of Lowly Indian Soldier. This Blog wasn’t targeted at you but thank you for reading. This was solely for the “MNC” crowd which is still living under the influence that they are free.

This is Prakhar Gupta, Have a Nice Day & match those Damn Targets.

P.S. – A request to those who gets easily offended. Please don’t. This is a work of fiction & a little bit of humor. Take it lightly. if you Like it, go ahead & share it. And if you hate it, go ahead & screw yourself.

What Happens When Your Name Means NO in Local Language

ILA, is my elder sister’s name, like Ila Arun the crazy looking singer(No, disrespect ma’am but you do look kinda crazy but on second thought my sister is crazy too so I guess it’s all in the name), Ila means Island in French, Ila was also Lord Manu’s Daughter, it also means earth. So basically my Parents were very thoughtful when they named my sister, they gave her a traditional yet modern name infact if you search this name on goggle you will find many foreigners with the name Ila. She is a happy go lucky kind of person which is ironic because her nick name is lucky. Well, not so lucky with that name in South India. Why? Will get to that.

ILLA, notice the double L, means NO in Kannada & I guess in Tamil too. Basically it’s a negative word, literally. My Parents never actually had slightest idea that her name would backfire in Southern part of our country.

Although people got confused with her name in north India too, many thought that she was Muslim & her name is recited in a Verse in Holy Quran, “la ilaha illallah muhammadur rasulullah”. Getting confused with religion of a person is acceptable, but thinking & giggling that your name means NO is not. So to give you the bigger picture of her messed up northern Indian Name totally thrashed in South India, I’ll narrate two incidents.

The Gym Signatures

There are various interpretations of a story, depending on the number of people involved. In this case there are only two people. My sister, who is confused that why the gym receptionist gets confused whenever she writes or sign her name in the gym register. And the Gym receptionist who is confused & thinking that why this girl writes NO in name & signature column, this gym register is in English then what’s  wrong with her, maybe she is one of those illiterate north Indians, Must be from Bihar (*Laughs*, *Self High five in mind*). But wait; is she intentionally hiding the identity? Do I look like a creep? Does she think that I will send her a friend request on facebook? Quick, I have to react now before she thinks that I am a stalker who self-talks way too much.

“Ma’am, please don’t write NO every time you enter the gym”.

“No???”

“Yes Ma’am, it is compulsory to fill in your details in gym register every time you enter.”

“But I always write my name.”

“So you are saying that your name is ILLA”.

“My name is ILA, and it’s not what you think it is.”

“*Giggles like a little girl*, it’s a very funny name ma’am”.

The Bangalorean Aunty

“Aww, She is such a Sweet, Cute little baby, what is her name?” asked the Bangalorean Aunty after pinching Nishka, my Sister’s 2 year old daughter for the 5th time. My Sister was in a neighborhood park with her daughter where she met Bangalorean aunty.

“Nishka”, my sister replied while slowly putting Nishka away from the clutches of pinching aunty.

“Good Name, What does it mean?”

Then my sister proceed to explain the meaning of the name which for certain reasons, I keep forgetting, it’s a complicated name and I have already asked my sister many a times so now I am waiting for Nishka to explain her name to me Cause I am not asking my super hyper sister again who used to beat the crap out of me when we were kids and can still do.

*Name Explaining Happens*

“I must say, it’s a very good name, so, what is your name beta & do you live in HSR?”

“Ila and yes aunty, we live in HSR”

“HSR is a good place to live in Bangalore, so are you a housewife or work in those IT Companies. By the way you didn’t tell me your name”

“Ila, I used to work in HCL but now a days I am taking care of Nishka”

“Beta why you keep saying NO whenever I ask your name, is something wrong?”

“No aunty, everything is fine, my name is ILA”

“Strange, your name is very negative, it means NO in Kannad”

“Yeah aunty, *Sigh* I know.”

So when my sister narrated me these two incidents, she told me that she is one more awkward conversation away from getting a tattoo on her hand which would say

My Name is ILA & I am not a NEGATIVE”.

Well, Good luck Sister.

This is Prakhar Gupta, Have a Nice Day & Make sure your kid’s name isn’t something funny in all the 18 Official Regional languages & 780 other languages of India. (Source- The Internet)

 

 

 

Auntyji Stop, I am a stranger

“Which station is this beta”?

“Firozabad, aunty”. I replied while putting my duffel bag on rack above my seat.

There was a sense of energy in her voice, she was clearly in her early 50’s but her sharp highly mannered voice and clear English accent made me realize that my fellow passenger is not some ordinary woman.  Not often you meet an aunty in a train who starts conversation in English. She was simple in her attires, wearing a polka dotted saree with a shawl (No, I was not ogling at her, I simply notice stuff, I am not a pervert, Thank you)

“Do you know by what time we will be reaching Ghaziabad”? She enquired.

“Aunty, we are in Gomti, we should be thankful to God that its only 2 hour late today, yesterday It got cancelled, plus getting a reservation in its chair car is also a matter of luck but if you insist than by looking at its speed and by my assumptions, we will be reaching there around 4 o’ clock but consider that a miracle”. I finished my hate speech on our train Gomti for being always late and I also tried my best not to be rude to her so I finished my last sentence with a smile although I was having the worst headache of all time but I remained polite.

“Good, that means we are still on time, you see my Son- in law is coming to pick me on Ghaziabad station”. She gave me the very first information of the day about her and her family.

“Oh, so you are going to see your daughter in Ghaziabad”? I simply asked a question to let her know that I am not being rude by ignoring her information but what I didn’t know that I was falling into a trap of endless flow of information and the most talkative aunty I have ever met in my whole life and trust me, I have met aunties from my mother’s friend circle or my friend’s mother who can talk continuously for a long time, but as a I said earlier, my fellow passenger was not some ordinary person, she was a nuclear bomb when it comes to talking, endless blabbering sometimes even to herself when I ignored her.

“Yes, I am, she lives in Indirapura, Ghaziabad”. I simply nodded because there was nothing except for a gentle nod I can do for that information.

After seeing that her previous information had nothing which can make this conversation move a little further, she posed another question.

“Ever heard of it”?

“Yes, my friends used to live there”.

“Good place, especially for my 8 months old granddaughter, parks and play grounds are in abundance there, you see my daughter who passed her B.Tech in 2001 from Bareilly is in TCS Sector- 62, Noida as a Team Lead and her husband is in HCL as an assistant manager, although my daughter also got job opportunity from HCL but you know TCS is a bigger name compared to HCL”.

“Good”, I really had no idea how to tell her that it’s not safe to open information about your family in front of a complete stranger, I mean look at my eyes aunty, they are freaking red, I could be some kind of a nut job, dysfunctional moron or a psychopath who can harm your family and you have seen this world more than me, you know that you can’t trust anyone these days, but then again, I really don’t want to be rude.

“You know, my second daughter is a scientist from IGIB, do you know what IGIB is”.

At first I thought that IGIB stands for Indira Gandhi International Airport Bombay Version and her daughter is a Scientist there but then I slapped my brain 2 times for thinking like an idiot. I had no intention of sounding like an illiterate at this point so I simply nodded to that although I really had no idea what IGIB was or what It stand for, later I searched internet for IGIB or should I say Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology.

“She is doing research on Effect of High Altitude on Blood pressure and heart rates and for this she went to Peru, Cape Town and many hills station in India and Indian Government is sponsoring her trips since it’s a government project, next year she will be flying to Germany”, Said the proud mother, by this time she was literally on cloud nine for having such brilliant daughters, her eyes lit up with joy while narrating her daughter’s amazing career.

“You must be a proud mother; your daughters are brilliant in their respective fields”. This time I was impressed by her kids.

“Yes they are”, she said with a broad smile on her face.

I smiled back thinking that her stock of information is now completely over and I can go back to sleep.

“You know, my son is also doing B.Tech from HBTI Kanpur, he tried for IIT but couldn’t get a seat so he settled for HBTI for CS branch”.

And here we go; she again started uploading her family information on me.

“Good, but why didn’t you send him for AIEEE”?

“He got in AIEEE to but was getting a college in south, and he didn’t want to leave me alone in Kanpur”.

“Why would you be alone”?

She didn’t replied, I slapped my brain real hard this time, what I didn’t noticed was that her saree was of white color and she wasn’t wearing any make up. She was a Widow.

“My husband died 5 years ago”.

This time her usual jovial was missing.

“I am sorry to hear that”, I said with my sincere apologies for her loss.

“You must be thinking that I am an idiot for telling everything about my family to a complete stranger, but the thing is that you are of same age as my son & look innocent too (Me? Innocent?, Aunty must be high), and I have never been left alone by him ever since my husband died, so I couldn’t help but talk to you and in the flow of emotions I became familiar with you, I hope I didn’t disturb you beta”.

I choked before speaking again; I realized how much of a jackass I was to her, giving rude and cold replies. I felt bad for myself. I apologies to her for being an insensitive prick earlier and also explained the reason behind it, my headache. She smiled back.

We both had a cup of tea and I won’t call it a nice cup of tea because it was plain water with a tiny drop of milk sprayed on it. We talked about how Women safety in Delhi since both her daughters are in this city, Pollution, My job, her job as an English teacher in a school (She wasn’t done with information till the end).

I lifted her two heavy bags from the rack and dropped her on Ghaziabad Railway station where her Son-in law was waiting for her.

It’s nice to meet strangers sometimes, and its better if they have truck loads of information to pass your time, I reached Delhi without even realizing the time spent in that train.

This is Prakhar Gupta. Have  a nice day.

Main Banunga Indian Idol (Ground rules for bathroom Singers)

When I was a kid my father was very proud of my singing skills and in the flow of the motions he sometimes used to kinda brag about my “Talent” in front of guests visiting our house or vice versa but that’s wasn’t enough, he used to further go on and ask me to sing a song for them and like an obedient Son I used to start barking upon hearing the word “sing” from my father , I didn’t realize how terrible I was until one day someone made a video while I was singing a song with friends in one of those college parties where People get hammered and start doing shit no one should ever do, not even in private, much like my singing which I can’t even afford to do in private cause I might end up hurting my own ears. My voice was like a Fat Lady burping 2 days old Pizza and I am sure my singing to audience’s ears is pretty much equivalent of rotten eggs to Nose.  Image

That Video Made me realized what a pain in the ear and rear I was to my audience. So when this topic came in my mind I thought there should be some ground rules for bathroom singers like us so as to keep people’s faith in music alive.

Rule No. 1 – Sing when you are alone

This is just a basic ground rule for bathroom singing, some things should only be done when you are alone especially in College Hostel Common bathrooms, and Singing is one of them. Because you might destroy the mood of the person in adjacent bathroom who decided to go for a happy time while in shower if you know what I mean, because when you sing you sound like a cross over between Rani Mukherjee’s Voice and Batman’s Gargling. WHERE ARE THEY???(Read it in Batman’s Voice, I am sure most of you can)Image

Rule No. 2 – Always say “No” to Antakshari

You know what’s fun on college road trips, Antakrshiri but only when you have girls in your group or you might end up looking like a Homo for suggesting antakshari as a recreational activity. But if you do have girls on your road trip and by any chance your crush is also a part it and you aren’t as bad in looks as your Singing talent then you might hamper your chance of hooking up with her if you dare to open your mouth to impress her with your voice just because you think that you have practiced enough of singing in your bathroom and now you can even teach the art to others. Piece of advice- Just don’t or you will end up in her friend zone or worse, brother zone or worse, you won’t even exist for her once she hear you farting from your mouth because that’s what you actually sound like.

Rule No. 3 – Be true to yourself

Did you know that our brain makes us see ourselves 5 times more beautiful in mirrors than we really are?”

Now it may be a bogus fact, I read it somewhere and we all know that Mirrors are scumbags, Hollywood even made 2 horror movies called Mirror to show how big assholes these mirrors are but you know who is a bigger scumbag than mirror is, Our Brain. This little Bastard on our top floor play tricks on us all the time, for example “the Pinocchio illusion.” The Pinocchio Illusion is an illusion that one’s nose is growing longer (Source- Wikipedia, Duh) and I don’t know what other things our brain hides, maybe we all have well toned six pack abs body but this scumbag is making us look fat in mirror (ok that was a bad example) but think again may be our voice sound so good to us in bathroom because our brain is hiding the reality.

Someone had to become Neo to save us from the Machine world (Brain).

So before you Kick start your little rock show always be sure that you are fit enough to sing.

This is Prakhar Gupta, Have a nice day & give me a ring when you are about to sing Coz Ring ring ring, di di ding( God, I am bad in Rap too)