One of my colleagues, whom I’ll take the liberty to call Jeev(name changed). I’ll not venture out to reveal it for security reasons that would become clearer, apparent and fundamentally reasonable as you stroll through whatever follows this sentence.
The non-software private sector companies in this part of the earth, one where Jeev and I work has an average age of thirty two and a quarter, unlike it’s public sector counterparts for whom it’s fifty nine yrs and 364 days and 23 hrs and … (Thanks to the culture out there which would make Ruby Goldberg to Ruby yawn yawn Oldberg. But that’s another story).
Jeev is one of those few Indian men with Dravidian origins who could be sent to WWE without any prior training or weightlifting or sausage-gobbling and still one could fearlessly put his entire inherited treasure to bet on him when he’s is playing Shawn Michaels, fresh from a heavy lunch on a Thursday afternoon. Most of the push back –retractable chairs in our office had to be sent to the city municipal scrap yard within seven hours of procurement from their manufacturers and distributors. Thanks to the one hundred and thirty six kgs of uncooked bones, flesh, pancreas etc. which Jeev was made up of. Any ordinary plywood seating accessory would turn into a nuclear-wreck as soon as it would be graced with Jeev’s posterior bulbous mass. His manager once ordered a custom made sitting arrangement especially for Jeev’s needs and the safety of the other ‘ordinary’ chairs. It was made from duralumin alloy for extra support and topped with foam for a painless sitting experience. Jeev was moved by this act of concern and since then never thought of floating his resume to the job-consultants in Thuvakudi, Eden Gardens or anywhere else.
Jeev has different tastes when compared to most of his sane colleagues, including me. He was the only one among the ever-growing number of bikers (especially after the Bollywood flick called Dhoom) who bought a LML Graptor. It’s another issue that the manufacturer had soon after stopped production of the bike following customers complaining about their girlfriends falling off from the speeding bikes owing to intimidating noises from the suspension system. Now two of the Graptors can be spotted at the Auto Museum in Helsinki. The rest can be found at the aforementioned city municipal scrap yard except for one which rests with Jeev’s garage.
Jeev develops attachments with anything he buys, and sometimes it costs him a few thousands. Like once, in his school days when he refused to give away the chewing gum which he had been chomping for the past fourteen hours. And went to bed chewing it only to find a hard, acrylic, unwanted piece of gum stuck to the expensive velvet bed-linen next morning. The linen was thereafter used for cleaning the family car with a quick replacement in place.
Last year he got a Maruti Suzuki –Zen at it’s maximum retail price after believing whatever spilled out of the promos and advertisements. Primarily it was because of the fuel efficiency which was lusty enough for him to make a dive into his bank account and make the purchase. He was an avid driver and had even test -driven his friend’s Volvo made Bus. But that was with a Light Motor Vehicles License which he had obtained before he even knew where the steering wheel in a car was placed. Bribes had come to his rescue then. He had dreams of becoming an F1 driver once but with passage of time he realized that there are no custom made F1 cars for 140 kgs human-looking monsters in the circuit yet. He changed his mind and decided to become an Electrical Engineer instead.
For the first few days we had to hear epics of incoherent information about his car, especially during lunch time when he made it a point to raise the topic and continue it till the office dispersed at 18.30 hours. It included everything from the color which he bragged that could have been taken for authentic platinum in bright sunshine to the horn which he claimed made a certain Gurbinder Singh, his neighbor, mistake for Radio 93.5 FM. But all this trumpet- beating, Zen-worshipping, and car-washing lasted for a smattering of a time.
Once he was speeding (mind you he was an aspirant F1 driver at one point in time) past the Mumbai Pune expressway at 130 kilometers an hour. He would have pushed the accelerator more but the engine would splutter, spit, gasp and thud. About FIVE HUNDRED meters ahead, a stray underfed cow was crossing the road with apparently no visible purpose and was appearing to make only half an attempt to even plod. The next few milliseconds were jammed with reflexes, some which came with experience and the rest, momentary gain of smartness. Jeev released the accelerator, clogged the brakes with too many megawatts of power and waited to see what would follow. He was yanked from the seat and would have smashed against the windshield but for the seat belt wrapped around him which did not give away. The cow was safe and gave a blank look more than that of Schumi’s face after the failure at Monaco Grand Prix.The hood of the Zen hit and had shattered onto the divider.
Seven days later Jeev bought a new Indica Xeta for reasons untold. But I guess it was too much for him to be taken as a “dumb” (Courtesy: Catchphrase from Tata Indica Xeta TV ads).
Today his Zen can be spotted at the city municipal scrap yard.
This was an intended fairy tale and all characters excluding myself, the Graptor ,the Zen and the Xeta are purely a result of imagination gone irreversibly wild]