I hope you enjoyed reading this post on the weekly Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where thirteen of us write on the same topic. Today’s topic has been chosen by Delirious. The twelve other bloggers who write regularly are, in alphabetical order, Anu, Delirious, gaelikaa, Grannymar, Maxi, Maria SF, ocdwriter, Padmum, Paul, Shackman, The Old Fossil and Will. Do drop in on their blogs and see what their take is on this week’s topic. Since some of them may post late, do give some allowance for that too!
“The ultimate Indian idea of good value; not to be confused with miserliness. Paisa vasool means that the purchased item was worth its price. It indicates a satisfaction in extracting every drop of consumptive liquid from each paisa. When you wring the act of consumption dry, and leave no discernible residue, it is then that you feel the warm after-glow of paisa vasool…
This ability to see utility in all its dimensions in any object and to not rest till every ounce of it is exhausted, has perhaps more to do with the ingrained cultural memory of scarcity, than with a real need for economy. We may not mind paying more, but our paisa must always be vasool.”
– From Santosh Desai, ‘The Dhania Factor’ (Mother Pious Lady).
Paisa Vasool used as a noun denotes a person of that kind of disposition. There are some notable characters in my life who I describe as such.
Paisa vasool manifests itself in many ways. Some very common ones are to stuff oneself beyond comfort at a buffet meal spread; hanging around an air-conditioned cafe over one or two coffees to enjoy the cool comfort while other customers are waiting in queues; licking ones plate clean in a restaurant and so on. At the commercial level, overloading vehicles is a common phenomenon as is the over-exploiting of efficient workers.
This also translates into other areas like the utilisation of hired help. Nagging them constantly and being after them to be active constantly during the period of duty is a common malady for the Paisa Vasools.
A variant which is common with some older people is to give one task to a younger member of the family and just as he sets off, add other things to do en-route. Another one is when a service provider comes home to repair something, request him to look at something else too, hoping that it will be free of charge. For instance, when I am dressed to go for my walk and go in to inform my father that I am going for a walk, he will inevitably ask me to get something or the other on my way back.
Do I have to elaborate further as to why I suddenly thought of this subject to write a blog post on?
While I agree with the general direction of the quote, I prefer to live and die like the thorn bird though perhaps it is now too late.
“There is a legend about a bird which sings just once in its life, more sweetly than any other creature on the face of the earth. From the moment it leaves the nest it searches for a thorn tree, and does not rest until it has found one. Then, singing among the savage branches, it impales itself upon the longest, sharpest spine. And, dying, it rises above its own agony to out-carol the lark and the nightingale. One superlative song, existence the price. But the whole world stills to listen, and God in His heaven smiles. For the best is only bought at the cost of great pain… Or so says the legend.”
~ Colleen McCullough, The Thorn Birds
I have added a link to my earlier post The Last Sufferer and request my readers to go to the link to read about what is happening in our parliament. It is a crying shame.
The Common Man, made immortal by our famous cartoonist R K Laxmn is the last sufferer in the above cartoon. He is the sod who pays the massive amount of indirect taxes in India which goes to finance all the shenanigans of our establishment.
The highest form of shenanigans is currently going on in our parliament. Parliament is held to ransom by unruly behaviour from our elected representatives who are playing politics at the common man’s expense.
The common man would get sacked if he did not do the work he was appointed to do and got paid for. The common man has appointed our legislators to legislate. They are not doing it at great cost to their employers. This has been caught beautifully by another noted cartoonist Ajit Ninan
I as a common man have decided that I shall not cast my vote for any sitting legislator be it for our state assembly or for our parliament. In other words, sack him/her using the only tool that I have at my disposal.
I earnestly request my fellow common women and men of India to do the same to express our disgust and displeasure.
Flash back to 1961. I was a happy bachelor enjoying life at Hyderabad. To enable that life style I was also a wheeling and dealing salesman.
My late uncle PK, who was more of a father to me than my father ever was or is, was then in Bombay and had some work with Sirpur Paper Mills located in the backwoods of Telengana in Andhra Pradesh. Like he was wont to do, he decided that since he had to come so far anyway, he might as well come up to Hyderabad to meet up with his nephew and get him out of any scrapes if he had got into any. He sent a letter to me; those were the days when that was the preferred mode of communication as even trunk calls were difficult and to get me near a telephone would have been difficult; and requested, yes, requested, that I hire a taxi and come to Sirpur and meet him off a train from Bombay so that he could finish his work at Sirpur and return to Hyderabad with me in the taxi to spend a couple of days with me there.
Just to ensure that I met the train on time, which was early in the morning, I reached Sirpur the previous evening by around 6 pm. It was then that I discovered that there were no hotels or waiting room in the station and the entire town consisted of the station, a small restaurant and a police outpost. All serving people visiting the mills during the day time. I went up to the Station Master to ask his advise and he suggested that I sleep on a bench on the platform of the station.
I did not relish the idea as the single bench was occupied at that particular moment by an unsavoury looking character and so I went to the restaurant to seek advise. The Head Constable of the Police outpost was having some tea there and when I was talking with the owner of the restaurant over heard me and offered the hospitality of the outpost for the night to me. He added that there was a toilet too and that clinched the deal and I gratefully accepted his offer.
It was thus that I spent my first and not the only night in a police lock up. The cell was not locked as a courtesy to me, but it was an experience that I have never forgotten.
My uncle duly landed up the next morning and was flabbergasted with my story and could never stop teasing me on and off throughout his later life, about my going to jail for his sake.
I hope you enjoyed reading this post on the weekly Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where thirteen of us write on the same topic. Today’s topic has been chosen by Paul. The twelve other bloggers who write regularly are, in alphabetical order, Anu, Delirious, gaelikaa, Grannymar, Maxi, Maria SF, ocdwriter, Padmum, Paul, Shackman, The Old Fossil and Will. Do drop in on their blogs and see what their take is on this week’s topic. Since some of them may post late, do give some allowance for that too!