Faux Pas!

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I had originally titled this post as “Embarrassing Faux Pas.” Fortunately, I remembered that this is likely to be read by Magpie who will pull me up for the tautological horror and corrected it. Look at the impact you have on me Magpie!

When I started getting involved with the net and the use of computers, blogging etc, I was persuaded to join Facebook and a few other social networks. After some time, I just dropped out of using them as I did not find them interesting nor did I find the time. Email and group mails besides IM and Skype was more than enough to keep me engaged for hours together.

Recently, I have been persuaded by some well wishers that I should get active on Facebook again. I have taken their advise and find that many of my blog friends are also active on Facebook. This is a revelation and I intend spending some time every day at Facebook henceforth.

The purpose of this post however is to talk about something else altogether.

On my return to Facbook, I found one entry from a young lady with the surname of Prasad. Now Prasad is one of my dearest friends and I know that he has two daughters, one in India and one in Austrlia. So, on the assumption that this lady was one of Prasad’s daughters, and you know how the memory of an old codger like me works, I commented on her post about talking to her father and also complimented on her dog which appeared on her photograph.

I suppose that she was quite confused but being the lady that she is, she simply answered my query about the breed of her dog and left it at that. Later in the evening, I was speaking to Prasad on the phone when I mentioned this and he said that his daughter’s name was different!

I promptly went back to Facebook, apologized to the lady explaining the background. She gracefully replied and jogged my memory about who she really is, a lady about who, I had blogged last year!

So, now I have three young Prasad ladies on my Facebook account. Two of them very active posters including Vaishnavi about who this post is being written. The other, Meera, is an avid scrabble player and various other things and I have put her in touch with another reader of mine who is active on the scrabble on Facebook.

I have been busy!

Having got re hooked to Facebook, it is now getting to be quite addictive. How many of you are addicted?

Modern life.

This is a quick post to share an incredible story. I was thanking my friend Prasad on the phone for an email received from him. He normally uses his personal mail address but on occasion does use his wife’s address as well. On this occasion, he did not know what I was talking about and asked me to forward the mail sent to me by Shubha, his wife! The message was quite important and just look at modern living! The husband and wife team living in Australia, and I have to forward a mail from the wife to her husband!

Prasad, please do show this to Shubha and say, that I blog about these things!

Handicap? What Handicap?

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Jean has got a fantastic blog post in her blog “Cheerful Monk”, which has inspired this post.

It was in 1987, that I had my second hip joint replaced, two years after the first one had been. The surgeon, a childhood personal friend whose parents and my parents were friends and I, were both just about the same age and the chemistry between the two of us was very strong.

It was also a time of high personal income taxes and one tried to find ways to reduce the incidence of taxes in whatever way possible. I came to know that one could claim a special rebate in the personal income tax if one was physically handicapped.

I was in Bangalore at that time and the surgeon was in Bombay. I rang him up and asked him to provide me with a certificate to the effect that I was physically handicapped to avail of the benefit of the rebate in income tax, as advised by our tax consultant.

His answer was crisp. “Handicap? What handicap? Don’t insult me. You are not handicapped any more. I have removed your handicap. I shall not give you any such certificate.”

Reading Jean’s post reminded me about that incident. Since there is one of my regular readers out there recovering from a hip replacement and another expected to go in for one soon, this post is written with the hope that they will be reassured that they too can say “Handicap? What handicap?” soon enough!

Conrad, my apologies. This is not about the mentally handicapped. Time enough for that, another day!

The Curve Ball Or The Googly.

The title of this post should not cause too much problems for most of my regular readers as for as the first part, the curve ball in base ball goes. The second part, googly may be difficult for the same people as, it is a cricketing term. In either case, it is a ball delivered by the pitcher or the bowler which deceives the batsman.

I received the following mail from a dear friend, who saw my photograph, posted on Ranjan’s birthday with a cigarette in my hand. The same photograph that prompted Bikehikebabe also to comment on it. I give below a slightly edited version of the mail from my friend and my response to it too.

“Hi Ramana,

• You lead a healthy life.
• You gave up smoking, I think!
• You gave up the drink.
• You eat well.

But………..what will you do with the extra years?”

AND THIS CARTOON WAS ATTACHED TO THE MAIL!

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My response was as follows:

“You have no idea how often I think the same thing dear friend! To go back to the days of wine and whisky; gourmet food and the poker table; races on meet days, and the company of good friends and laughter. “I used to live for the nights that I would never remember, with the friends that I would never forget!”

I missed ten years of what could have been the glory days of my life because of unexpected developments. Now, when I can get back to that, I have got new responsibilities.

There is a blog post there I think!

No, dear friend, I do not want to live the additional twenty years. The sooner I go, the happier I shall be. I only wish that I could go quickly and without too much fuss and trouble to myself and others and more importantly without much sadness behind me.”

What has this exchange of mails got to do with the curve ball and the googly?

Life keeps throwing curve balls and googlies at us when we are at bat. The trick is in anticipating the possibility of such balls being sent your way, developing the skills to bat them away and to get on with the next ball.

My response to my friend’s mail was spontaneous. I did not pause to think before I wrote that. I read the mail, clicked the reply button, and just shot off the mail.

After a few minutes, I realized that perhaps I should have given some thought to the mail before I replied the way I did. I wondered if I really would go back to the life as I had written, which believe me, was very much me. On reflection, I think that I it will be now next to impossible for me to revert to that life style, even if I did not have the current responsibilities.

I have changed too much. I would not dare to say, for the better, but to a different man altogether. There simply is no urge to do things. The urge is more to live a life of study and reflection, and with the new found love for blogging, the blog world.

My friend eagerly awaits this post and I shall simply close by affirming that, even if, by some miracle all my responsibilities were to vanish and my financial situation improve substantially, I would not give up my current life style. There may be some minor tweaking as it were, but no major changes. I think that I have become too lazy! I am prepared to face the doctor in the cartoon!

Would you change if you suddenly won a lottery or something like that?

Happy Birthday Ranjan.

Today Ranjan is 38. This day in 1971 was a momentous one for our whole family. He was born in his maternal grandmother’s town, Hyderabad. We were living in Mumbai, then known as Bombay, but Urmeela wanted her maternal family doctor to deliver Ranjan in her Nursing Home. I was in attendance and I can never forget holding him in my arms all swathed in bundles of sheets.

Can’t imagine wrapping him up in sheets and holding him in my arms anymore.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY RANJAN.

Last year, Urmeela was with us to celebrate the birthday as were some other friends from the USA who had taken this photograph of the three of us.

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Toilet Paper Can Create Great Conversation.

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This photograph must certainly be the answer to many questions, asked and unasked in Conrad’s post on All Point Paper. For those who have not already been there to enjoy the discussions there, I strongly recommend that you do forthwith.

I am not a man who believes in serendipity. I believe that everything that happens, happens for a purpose. Therefore, it did not surprise me at all to come across a fascinating blog post and the comments on it on another interesting end use for toilet paper. Please do visit this “Novel Idea / Bathroom Reading.”

I hope that between Conrad’s post and this one, we shall all indulge in great discussions on this fascinating subject and whatever offshoot subjects that may arise out of it, such as, it did on Conrad’s post about labels.