Sunday, August 22, 2010

Atom Heart Mother

I come from a pseudo family – pseudo-Punjabi, pseudo-intellectual, pseudo-classy, pseudo-Madrasi. We’re pseudo and for some unimaginable reason we’re unabashedly proud of it.

So say, for example, why do I think we’re pseudo-Punjabi?

Of the eighteen and a half in-house residents, a majority cannot speak a coherent sentence in Punjabi without emitting guttural noises that bear a strong resemblance to gagging. English and very suggestive signals are the chosen media of communication at home.

Punjabi is spoken only when abuses are being hurtled at one another. Well that’s only because - let’s admit it - the degree of sophistication and punch packed into a heart-warming ‘m@&@#c#od’ is conspicuously absent in a ‘mother-fucker’, right? As you can see, we’re a very religious, god-fearing, simple, wheatish complexion cultured family (why then, won’t you bitches read our dramatically correct classifieds ads and marry into us?)

For the six years that I’ve lived away from home I’ve missed this, the pseudo-ness – evolving, growing, and changing size and shape, like an amoeba. Every time I’m back visiting, I observe a new dimension that has been added to my family’s pseudo-persnalty. And I have never been scared by any new-found idiosyncrasy than this time upon realizing that my folks are now pseudo-conservative.

My typical weekend lunch was brought to a jaw-dropping halt when my father smirked at something he read off his phone, passed it to his wife and said, “This is hilarious. You think I should re-tweet this?”

Tweet? No no, re-tweet! Re-FUCKING-tweet!

For those who don’t know me personally - apart from my heartfelt congratulations - a fun-fact, I’m not what you twits and tweeters would call socially-networked, online or otherwise. I have an email account that I religiously check once in four days. I now know that the deposed King of Nigeria is a conniving bastard who despite all his convincing e-mails will not give me his gold in return for an online transfer of a meager $250. I am completely aware that facebook is not an online database of human mugshots. (FYI – my colleague’s dog has a facebook account and is apparently very active. I don’t blame the mutt; he has his own bloody personalized wall and all. What more could a dog want?)

The point I’m trying to make is that, I now know my folks are more active online than their own son. It’s a precarious situation. It’s the Indian Kid version of the biggest Indian Parent fear – realizing that your kid is sexually active. I now know that my parents are social-networkingly active.

They’ve lost their virginity and that too online! Two fifty year olds. Going at it. On their keyboards and keypads. In full online-view.

Have they no morals? Could they have not learnt from their own son – the significance of social-networking abstinence? And the justification they give me is – “Not our fault son. It was all the peer-to-peer pressure? We gave in.”

Who do they think I am – some naïve fucking n00b!

I’m ashamed. The unethical bastards have let my proud family name down. They’ve hacked my trust.

Come to think of it, it’s my fault only. I knew that introducing them to broadband and wi-fi would do them no good. I should’ve monitored their activities; at the very least curbed their freedom… err… bandwidth.


Pseudo-conservative twits.

The women in my household have always been, to put it mildly, mental. The news of the presence of a ‘new woman’ in my life would always warrant an insane interrogation, the sort that would put the Spanish Inquisition to shame. Where did you meet? Is her father the only proven sodomite in the family? Does she re-use syringes for her heroin shots? On a scale of one to ten – if one is ‘a typical daughter of our household’ and ten is ‘roadside Tamilian nympho-by-day-whore-by-night slut’ – how horny is she? Is her mother a witch? Does she respect her elders? The sorts.

So I expected a modest burning at the stake when I expressed my intention of taking up an apartment with a woman. A woman - who was not a fellow man, did the dishes and did not have a penis. However, the only bloody question that came my way was – “Can she cook?”

Can she cook?

That’s it? No witch-hunt? No inquiry? No ‘we’re a god-fearing, religious family’ monologues?

Can she fucking cook? That’s it?

I was bloody offended.

Of course she can cook – that’s the only reason I’m prepared to share an apartment with her in the first place. But they didn’t know that. Why would they assume that I had no intentions to take advantage of her lack of male genitalia? Why would they assume that I would have no interest in her skills that are not culinary in nature? Why?

Pseudo-progressive bastards.

FYI – my mother, who for fifty years of her earthbound existence, was referred to as Pammi, a fairly common Punjabi name, now chooses to go by the name - Pam.


Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaave you met Pam?

She’s Punjabi, progressive, pseudo and my mom. If she is Pam then I am bloody scared.


Raj said...

That was an f*@$#ing awesome narrative. One could not have explained the uniqueness any better

All the best !

kamna said...

I hv saved a copy of this post... u r so screwed if ur mom reads this... maybe I should also call her up and address her as Pam :P

kutta hai tu :)

Judy Balan said...

Brilliant. I love how you've even been pseudo-funny just to drive home the point ;))

Okay, okay. It was nice. Wouldn't be you if it wasn't a little overboard.

notgogol said...

@raj: I'm still wondering why I'm being wished. But nonetheless, thanks :)

@kamu: Two can play at this blackmailing game lady. I have my ammunition as well you know. :D

@prudy: What would my life be without the niceness that you bestow upon it! Biatch! :)

Raj said...

I wished for the move in :P

anju said...

Wow. You could have written this post a year and some months ago and saved me the troouble (not to mention the therapy) that it took for me to help understand why my then-to-be-in-laws-who-are-punjabi, behaved the way they did! :D Oh and yes, I think I was ten on their scale of 1 to 10 - or atleast, the Tamilian bit is true. And no, we didn't last.
Brilliant post, still laughing. Long time reader, delurking..

vishesh said...

ha! well...simple tip to keep parents away from social networking sites-create the accounts and say how awesome it is. problem solved.

notgogol said...

@raj: :)

@anju: :O I have lurkers and all? and haan, I don't know of many tams and punjus who get along. very very very different culturally.

@vishesh: I am getting a lot of commentors from JBs space. Good suggestion - problem is my mom has studied child psych - sees through most of such stuff :|

anoushka said...

You have the coolest Dad in the whole wide world.

P-A-M is, as you would say, "strictly ok"


Sumira Khan said...

Brilliant and completely crazy post... :) But I hear you. I think it is completely awkward and embarassing to suddenly find out that your folks grew up while you were not looking. And what's with the cool lingo? Makes my stomach flip. :D

AtomicGitten said...

Bringing up Mommy is tough on the nerves. But don't worry, you'll pull through :P

notgogol said...

@anu: The day my mom reads the blog, the day...

@sumira: You put it well - they actually bloody grew up when I was not looking.

Eh well cool lingo is misdirected venting :P

@atomic: I've given up. She just lost her alcohol virginity, with chivas and all :|

Pray tell me where be posh hiding?

errormsg! said...

this is SO funny (and true) that i have to go think of something clever to say.

vira said...

Bilkul he besharam ho gaya hai. :D Funny but still besharam :P

notgogol said...

@bangalan: Oh you're alive. Kitna bhaav khaati hai!

@gujaratan: "Funny but still besharam"? What sort of juvenile comment is this. You sound like a bloody biharan!

Judy Balan said...

Niiiiice. I'm liking the new layout. But it's a touch feminine :D But please don't revert to old one. Anything's better than that :\

notgogol said...

Changed by a woman. Bound to be a tad feminine na. And, I cannot go back to the old template even if I want to - I don't bloody know how to!

Judy Balan said...

Seriously? You're more html challenged than I am? :O)

Sowmya said...

What language you use for your family! And you want me to certfy that your posts are arty!

ha ha....

enjoyed reading it as always, anyway...

AtomicGitten said...

Bringing up Mommy is a traumatic experience. Be strong.
Posh be hiding behind an editorial desk and is apparently too swamped to blog :-/

notgogol said...

@Prudy: I don't like codes. Simple person and all that jazz you see.

@Sowmya: And what about the language they use for me? :P
There is nothing non arty about obscenities - its about the message more than the media you see :)

@Atomic: She can read, no? And btw her twitter account was hijacked.

Unless she now goes by the name Parthiban? :)

errormsg! said...

ooh yes! i am alive and for reasons best explained in an email have been drawing sardars of late (oh no, nothing scandalous or even remotely gossip-worthy so dont expect too much) ... i like the new layout (well, almost). which planet are you in right now? bombay is a far cry, no?

vira said...

firangiyon ke saath uthogay, baithogay, rahogay to hum to bihari hi lagenge na aapko.

pallavi said...

Hmmm... I can understand the 'parents on FB' phobia.. ever since my dad joined FB, I've sort of retired!! But notgogol, honestly, I didn't like the language in this post. I think you could have driven the message home without all those colourful words!

notgogol said...

@bangalan: Kitne lambe-lambe e-mails bhejti hai tu re! :P

I didn't change layout ya. Kisi ne kiya mere liye. But it's okayish methinks.

Still a nomad par mera ek-tihayi samay to tere shehar main hi guzarta hai :)

@gujratan: Kutti. Kaun firangi? :P

@pallavi: It's a hangover from reading too much transgressional fiction and a little bit of misplaced frustration :)

Sneha said...

laughed out loud! loved the humor! u r gifted, in a contorted way that is ;)

surabhi said...

I lovedddddd this one..:) little Sanki u are though,I realize..

notgogol said...

@sneha: What are those retarded kids called in a politically correct way - gifted? Or are they special? :-?

@biharan: Bahut hi jaldi realization hua aapko :)

Sneha said...

ha ha ha.. (seems like) utna special nahi ho, thank ur stars

notgogol said...

Hindi and all!

But I would like to be at least a little special someday, say dyslexic. I can practice also - drink a little too much wine, hold pen in non-writing-left hand and then try to spell dyslexia. Ahh! The limitlessness of being (special)! :|

Sneha said...

aspirations! uff

Jasmine said...

i see your blog for the first time today.
you are,well, funny.


notgogol said...

But I've been to your blog before, along while back.

And, well, thank you.

Koockie said...

Just got to your blog and this post made me laugh out loud... that's LOL in the online world. Ask your dad, he'll explain the other commonly used abbreviations!