Sunday, March 18, 2007

"Up... and Down..."

I found myself smiling yesterday... Curious, if only due to the following comment during a recent encounter on google:
BigP: hi, what's up

: mmm... trying to write an abstract...
trying to write matlab just fooling around
what's up with you? big weekend ahead?

BigP: ya tom is iron maiden... my first international band show
me: mine was... sting, i think, and oh, that really sucked.
i don't know if it'll work out. the demand : abstract by the end of the month :-(

BigP: i hope they get iron maiden right
me: want to write on one of these themes
BigP: sounds serious
me: hehe. yeah, i wonder if i am... :-( :'-(
oof. nowadays, it's as if every smiley i want to write/type is a tearie ... wtf.

BigP: hahahhahaa. i am hearing "tearie" for the first time
Back to our story, of course, asides aside...

It had probably been something between ten months and a year since our paths had crossed. "Long lost" acquaintances, stumbling into each other maybe last February, at a nearby coffee shop. Having coordinated to intercept each other in the neighbourhood market (and proceed to the university thereupon), the plan was to search for students, for a promo/photoshoot, a gig that Play had snagged.

During the journey back - one which I hadn't imagined would be conducted by car (I hadn't really given much thought to what to imagine, actually...), the conversation turned away from the missed connections experienced during the previous half hour, and to the condition of traffic on the Outer Ring Road. (ha.)
me: What's your strategy for staying sane during these commutes? The unending barrage of traffic sounds - autos that emit phatphatiya vibrations, motorcycles (their silencers missing) pretending to be Harley-Davidsons (but actually becoming just Hardly-Davidsons), and the rolling thunder of buses - just makes my brain want to go into hibernate :-(

Play: I've gotten used to it all, actually. Work involves so much travel that I nearly do everything in the car now... I've had this car for eight years now...

That was when (or so I'd like to believe) the realization hit me - about why I'd found myself smiling. The car was a Maruti 800. Favoured steed of the 80's, the first car for many of my friends' parents, and of friends - loved and/or lost - when they turned 18 (or responsible.)

In that instant also came another understanding. Of why (for me) these memories of careening around in Maruti 800's have such a gloriousness as well as a warm absurdity attached to them - a sort of liberatory 'anything can happen', with endless "tu bas aaja, phir hum chalte hain."

It's in large parts due to the suspension of these cars :-)

All we do in them is bounce up, down, and around...


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