Return To The Bay Of Pigs!

A long, long time ago, I had written a piece on how men can be more successful in wooing women. I had come across a lot of men who had complained to me about the difficulties they were facing when trying to talk to a woman or flirt with a woman.

Recently, a close stranger read this post (titled ‘Bay Of Pigs’) and decided to write a rebuttal for each of the points, this time from a woman’s perspective. What started out as an experiment in killing time soon became an insightful glimpse into the mind of women, what they think of men and what they expect from a man when he tries to flirt.

You need to read the original post for this to make sense, because in the interest of time and keeping in mind my readers with attention deficit disorders, I’ve edited those parts of this article that belong to the original.

Bay Of Pigs: Redux

(Note: The text in italicized black is part of the original post, while the text in brown belongs to the stranger, the woman who wanted to argue. Any mistakes in spelling or grammar are entirely my own and not the fault of the guest author.)

men-are-pigs

Men are pigs.

They say that God created Man because he was bored and that He created Woman because he needed a challenge. Man is the blueprint while Woman is the masterpiece. […] Men can consider this post as an eye-opener and take stock of what qualities they lack, and women can consider this post as an easy read and be amazed at my insight into the female mind.

Men are pigs. Truer words were never spoken!

1. Sense of humor: Most women look for funny men. But be warned, being funny does not mean cracking inane jokes and making complete idiots of yourself. It’s the wit that counts and not your ability to remember jokes. […] Just make sure you’re laughing with them, and recognize when they’re laughing at you!

A good sense of humour does appear to be amongst the top 3 of “what women want”, and the author appears to have it figured out. I think this is what most women want. On the other hand, I wouldn’t want a man that can make me laugh as such, rather, I like it when a man can keep it simple. By this I mean, a light and easy-going conversation is favored. I am the kind of person that is rather shameless, and have no qualms about laughing at myself. Men seem to love making jokes at the expense of the ladies around them, and get terribly disappointed when it isn’t received well by their female counterpart. In that regard, I am a good subject of jokes, I would say, because I almost always laugh along.

2. Build: Women are very realistic unlike men, and they know that not all men can have a body as hot as Arnie and Stallone. […] We men need to be realistic, and not stupidly optimistic. All women are hot, no exceptions!

Let me make this clear – most women do not aspire to be at the arm of men like Arnie; Stallone maybe, but not because of his build! Men are the only ones that want Arnie bodies. I wouldn’t want a “flabby piece of shapeless dough” (I’m shallow that way) I would like a fit guy though. Let’s face it – they’re so much more fun to look at, and show off! We women tend to look awesome pretty much all of the time (unless we’re caught in midst of beauty treatments like face masks or oily hair) and men need to realise they should at least try to live up to the standard we set so early on. Digressing from build, allow me also to add that well-groomed (which means well dressed, clean and smelling good, just in case you’re clueless) is what we’re looking for. So if you’re going to show up in denims and a sweatshirt, make sure you look cute while you’re at it, would you?

3. Chivalry: The concept of chivalry, for most men, stops at holding the door open to women. Wake up, men! That’s not all what women look for in the chivalry department. […] It takes great skill and greater patience to hold your own and also defend her while arguing in a group.

Ah! This is the tricky one. You don’t want to be chivalrous to a point where we constantly feel like damsels with faint hearts,  but you don’t want to be so aloof that we feel like you don’t care. It has to be just the right amount. That’s all I will say here. Why should we make it easy for you all the way? 

4. Possessiveness: Women like men to be possessive about them. It makes them feel special and wanted. […] For more advice on this, mail me.

Do men actually enjoy being possessive? Oh yes, you have the whole Neanderthal way of expressing ownership. You might as well pee all over us to state we’re “yours”! I personally don’t like possessive men. If a guy were to “tell me at every opportunity that they’re….” yaaaaaaaawn.. Oh MY, I think I just dozed off there a second! No no noooo! I really don’t want to hear that, I’d probably end up punching you in the nose!

5. Music: Women hate tone-deaf men. Every woman has a particular taste in music and it may not always match with yours. […] Listen to her favorite tracks with her, and encourage her to play it again if she wants to. You can pull your hair out later, when you’re alone.

Looking at the next point I’d like to say, mood music is very important – make it sensuous, trust me, you’ll enjoy it too (if you can get past the fact that you’re getting it on!) I don’t know about most women’s taste in music, but I’m always open to listening to new genres of music. In fact, most of the music I listen to today was introduced to me by men. If you don’t listen to death metal and the screeching, banging sort, I’m good to go. Some women really seem to enjoy sappy music, and that’s where I think you men should just take a stance and say, “hell no!” (and knock some sense into your lady’s head, please!)

6. Sex: Do not, I repeat, do not push the woman for a physical relationship. Women are very, very careful in this matter and if you push the wrong buttons (no puns intended) you come across as a sexually-frustrated despo! Be careful!

You have to tread carefully in this department. Women may say they are alright with casual sex, and want no strings, etc. but trust me, they almost always hope that strings will develop, that they dazzle you with their sexual skills, and you’ll fall in love with them. Sometimes that does happen, but I’ve noticed that men are capable of knowing the difference and maintaining it, women are NOT. I would suggest, if you really like the girl, take it at an easy pace in this department, and things will fall into place nicely.

7. Family Values: Most women like men who have good family values. Respect her parents and her family and she will like you all the more. Never ever call her dad “Dude!” or “Old Man!” because that will being down your brownie points!

What gets to me the most about a lot of Indian men is that they’re “mumma’s boys” and they want their partners to be as domestically awesome as their mothers. It’s all very well that you love your folks, in fact, I endorse it, but come on – recognize! I don’t know about other women, but that’s a big turn off for me. On the other hand, I don’t expect that my partner will get along brilliantly with my folks. It’s almost a universal fact that there will be friction between them. That’s what keeps life interesting, eh?

(On an entirely unrelated note – what exactly are brownie points? Am I allowed to cash them in for an actual brownie or two?)

8. Perseverance: Women like to be pursued with vigor. They hate being ‘flung’ around, if you know what I mean. […] Trust me, it works!

This one’s true, makes us feel special and adds the whole romantic movie atmosphere to real life. Lots of fun! Keep it real, don’t be a big pile of mush, because that gets old real quick. We like to be shy and coy and play hard to get – it makes the whole deal feel that much more special. Indulge us, would you?

9. Fighting: Fights are inevitable in every relationship, and when there are situations where you know that the reason is trivial, just take the blame. […] You do not blame the woman!

Don’t be irrational, that’s all. We are always right, that’s true, but we would get suspicious if you always agree – we’re smart that way. And that would lead to a whole new set of fights! So pick your battles, men, put your ego aside, in fact, maybe its best if you forget you have one, while you’re with us! 

10. The Ex- factor: Do not, I repeat, do not maintain contacts with your ex- girlfriends while you’re pursuing a woman, or when you’re in another relationship. […]

Hmmm, this one is a bit tricky. If you’re staying in the same city as your ex, and have common friends, you are bound to run into her, right? What we want to see is that you’re over her, and there is no residual anything for her. You’re better off if you cut all contact, unless you want to see us turn into raging lunatics? Oh and by the way, we’re complete hypocrites about our own exes – we will want to remain “friends” with ours, and you’re not allowed to protest. So there.

Good luck. Live long and prosper. If you didn’t understand that, you’re no fun, and you’re not a geek, which is what women want! (Or do we?)

AUTHOR’S NOTE

It takes great literary skill and greater convincing skills to get a chance to write for, or be featured on MirrorCracked. To have successfully passed all the barriers and made it on to this forum, I would like to personally extend a warm greeting to the lovely stranger (who has expressed her wish to remain anonymous) for her time and effort in helping men pick up women.

One beer coming your way, ma’am.

We are open for comments, opinions and brickbats, which I will deftly deflect in the stranger’s direction.

Advertisements

The 46-Rupee Meal

Ten years ago, when the world was a nicer place to live in, I was just getting out of high school, full of misdirected ambitions of making a difference in the world. Of the many things that were ideal back then, I liked the fact that I could have a hearty meal for less than ten rupees. That’s about 5 cents. Maybe not a ‘hearty’ meal, but certainly a couple of idlis and a vada for eight rupees. For the uninitiated, an idli is a white colored, steamed rice cake, about the size and shape of a BlackBerry Curve and a vada is a brown colored doughnut-shaped (and sized), deep-fried eatable that goes perfectly well with an idli. Ten years ago, a pair of idlis and a vada together used to cost eight rupees.

Today, ten years later, I realized that there has been a 475% increase in the cost of the same meal. A pair of idlis and a vada, today, costs 46 rupees.

Idli Vada
Two Idlis and a Vada - The 46-Rupee Meal

That’s still less than a dollar, but for someone who’s spent the better part of his life here in India, that’s daylight robbery. The strangest part of the entire experience today over lunch was not that I was fretting about the astronomical increase in the rate, but the equally enormous decrease in the quantity and taste.

The sizes of the idlis and vadas have reduced so much that its hard to spot them when you put them on a plate. You have to have a pair of really good binoculars to identify where they are and make sure that your spoon hits the mark. No, I’m exaggerating, of course, but you get the idea. And the taste, well, I have eaten pieces of cardboard (for free) that have been tastier.

I hate to call this inflation, because the term ‘inflation’ has a definition, a universally-accepted identity. I would call this phenomenon a gross negligence on the part of the Indian public, who have allowed this kind of injustice to penetrate every aspect of their lives. Our lives. Commonplace examples – a tennis ball that used to cost ten rupees now costs thirty. A piece of chewing gum that was half a rupee is now three rupees. A toothbrush that used to cost around four to five rupees is now thirty-five.

How I wish I were living in the stone ages, where all I had to worry about was the next critter I caught for dinner and the next female I slept with. If wishes were horses, I’d be a very rich, sexually-gratified stable boy.

Things To Do Before I Die

No, this isn’t just any other bucket list. This one’s unique.

There are quite a few bucket lists floating around in the blogosphere (By the way, is the word ‘blogosphere’ extinct?). I’ve seen and read them all, and most of them follow a predictable formula – go traveling somewhere, see some sights, taste some foods, etc. That’s all fine and dandy, and I wish them all the best in their endeavors. I have a few of those things to do as well, but I don’t think they would qualify for my bucket list. For example, I’d love to see a sunset over the Grand Canyon someday and I would give a hand and a foot to see the insides of a Pyramid. But these are things that I can and will do over the next few years. What I would ideally put in my bucket list are unconventional things that one would not normally find in conventional bucket lists.

Here’s my list.

  1. I want to see the DNA molecule. Not the vague, hazy white mass that appears at the bottom of a test tube after centrifugation, no. I want to see the molecule in all its double helical glory. I don’t think anyone has. Ever.
  2. I want someone to come up with a concrete explanation for the nature of light. I think Newton was confused enough to propose two theories that fit his math better. If light is a wave, then one equation works and if light is made up of particles, then the other equation fails. I don’t think I’m alone when I say that both these schools of thought were born out of necessity than reality. I want to see a solid unifying explanation before I die.
  3. I want to travel around the world in 80 days without flying. If Jules Verne can do it (or his character, at least), then so should I. Yeah, I know, this isn’t exactly a wow-event, but it’d be cooler than seeing the Eiffel Tower. And without flights, it’d be double the fun!
  4. I want to be able to sit on my porch with my dog on a Monday morning, put my feet up, open a can of cold beer, and shoot trespassers with birdshot. Redneck for a day. Nice concept!
  5. So far, in all my 27 years, there has only one book that has made me go, “Oh wow!” at the end – Italo Calvino’s “If On A Winter’s Night A Traveler”. I want to read three more such books before I die.
  6. There are seven people I know whose lives I want to ruin. I think I should be able to do that without too much trouble. Don’t worry, I’m not a scheming psychopath. I just think that these seven people deserve a lot worse for all the lives they have ruined.

One fine day, I’m going to buy a house in Gokarna and settle down there. What would make life more interesting at that point of time is owning a nice big tavern on the ground floor.

One day at a time.

PS: I used the full screen distraction free feature of worpress to write this. A neat idea, Jane. Thanks!

You Can’t Ring & Ruin My Life!

Evil Cell PhonesRemember those days of carefree indulgence back in college or school or even the womb? You could do whatever you wished without anyone bothering you or asking you irritating questions. Life was so beautiful, with little misery to discover and a lot of fun to explore. Then, some jackass went and invented the mobile phone.

It’s bad enough to have one phone, but when you try to adhere to statistics (India has almost a 200% cell-phone penetration), you get stuck with two phones and a very short fuse. Constantly trying to please every one of the 900-odd contacts on both phones, most of whom just give you a missed call hoping you consider them important enough for you to call back, can be quite a challenge if you’re not taking anger management classes. Since my anger management involves some highly charged romantic moments with my girlfriend, whom I shall diplomatically call a bombshell, and since I can’t meet her as often as I would like to these days (due to our respective careers and not anything else), I am almost always one phone call away from losing my cool.

This morning, I had the (mis)fortune of running out of balance on my prepaid number and reach the end of the month’s grace period on my postpaid one, and at 9 in the morning, I was ‘temporarily disconnected’ from the entire world. It was such a beautiful feeling – I became nostalgic and went up on the terrace, placed both my phones in front of me and danced around in my underwear singing ‘It’s My Life’ and screaming,

“You can’t ring and ruin my life!
You can’t ring and ruin my life!
I control you, fuckers!
Tra-la-la-laaa….
You can’t ring… You can’t ruin my life…”

Just as the chorus built up a bit and I became more and more animated, one of the phones beeped. I stopped mid-sentence, “I control you fu-” and stared at the pair of life-ruiners in front of me. One of them definitely had beeped. Was I dreaming? I went closer, slowly, hesitantly, and saw that my Motorola phone was flashing “I New Message”.

How could this be? I knew for a fact that there was no balance in either of the phones. I couldn’t receive messages! This was not possible! Then, it struck me that if this phone could receive messages, then what’s stopping it from ringing! I let out a guttural scream of pain, grabbed both the phones and ran inside. When I flipped the phone open, the message was from a client of mine and it read, “Nikhil, can’t reach you. Please call.”

I felt like a piece of shit as I stood in line, trying to recharge both the phones, a few hours later.

Image Courtesy: Slate.com

Matrix Relocated!

There were two pills – a blue one and a red pill. “Take one,” he said, and adjusted his black sunglasses. I couldn’t fathom why he was wearing dark sunglasses inside the already dimly-lit room. He couldn’t see a thing.

“Er, I’m over here pal,” I said, hiding an amused smile.

He turned towards me and used his free hand to raise his glasses. He stuck them over his forehead, looked at me through his blue contact lenses and said, “Don’t keep moving about, dude.”

“But I – “

“Don’t interrupt me!” he said, interrupting me. “Take a pill.”

“Why? What are these pills?” I asked, slightly angered with his tone.

“You are the Round One. We’ve been waiting for you for well over a decade. You will save us from the evil machine creatures that haunt us. One of these pills will enable you to see the truth and help us, and the other will enable you to go back to your boring PR life and your boring blogs and your boring PR life. You decide.”

“You said that already, man,” I said.

“What?”

“My boring PR life…”

“Yeah. I know. Now decide!” he said and held out his hand, on which nestled two innocent pills – one red and blue.

“Tell me something first,” I said. “Why am I the Round One? Is it because I’m fat? Why can’t I be the Chosen One or something cooler?”

“Stop wasting time, Round One! Take a pill and save our lives!” he pleaded.

I took the red pill and swallowed it with a glass of water. I waited. Nothing happened. I looked at him. “Now what?” I asked him.

“You bastard,” he said softly. “You’ve decided to go back to your PR life, Round One. You have damned us all.”

As I woke up, back in my boring life the next day, I decided to reduce some weight. Round One? WTF!

Facial Hair Stereotypes :)

stereotypeNo one wants to be a stereotype. Even if we are, then we try hard to keep a low profile. Everyone hates stereotypes. Stereotypes suck. Stereotypes are perhaps, the scum of the earth. They have no business being alive because all they can do is be a stereotype. Stereotypes are often categorized as desperate individuals seeking attention, and in most cases, it’s right. Stereotypical people piss me off beyond imagination – they make my blood boil and I’d much rather ignore their existence than rant about them, but unfortunately, last night I discovered a horrible truth about myself. I’m a stereotype.

I was on my way home, riding my disgustingly rickety bike (which is going to fall apart any day now), and I rode slowly. Very slowly, waiting for the rain to pour down. Its been close to seven months without a rain in Bangalore, so when the skies became dark and overcast at 5 in the evening, and when the wind picked up, bringing with it the familiar feeling that comes before a downpour, I hurried to finish my work and rode back slowly.

The drizzle started ten minutes into the drive, and it felt so good. For once, I was looking forward to a heavy downpour. When the first drops of the cold rain fell on my skin, my thoughts went to something the bastard from the cigarette shop across the street from my office had told me: “You South Indians are all alike – you grow a beard without a mustache and before it begins to look good, you shave it off! You have no self-control when it comes to facial hair! Look at my father,” he said pointing to an old, withered creature sleeping on the sidewalk next to the cart, “He hasn’t shaved for ten years now. His beard is longer than him!”

“Hey!” I said, getting slightly offended. “I shaved my beard-without-mustache off because a special woman told me I looked better with a complete French beard. That’s why I shaved it off. Don’t stereotype me!”

“If I knew typing,” he said, “I wouldn’t be here selling cigarettes, saar.”

Futile as it were, the argument ended with him short-changing me by half a rupee. So, as I drove back, I couldn’t help but notice the men around me and in particular, the general area around their mouths. As I re-read the last sentence, I feel so horribly disgusted with myself. Most people had a french beard. Some of them had a beard but no mustache. Some were clean shaven. Some were women, whom I’d mistaken for men. Anyway, I realized that the cigarette guy was right – South Indians have absolutely no self-control when it comes to facial hair maintenance.  We constantly waver between worrying whether having a mustache will get in the way of kissing a beautiful woman or whether having a beard will spoil the fun of slurping sambar.

I’m such a stereotype. I’m not gonna shave for the next ten years.

Five Questions And A Domain

mirrorcrackedA week ago, after a heavy meal, I was sitting on the pot and contemplating the evolution of snowmen, when I had a thought – I decided to take the plunge and get my own domain. With Joel guiding me every step of the way, literally telling me where to click and what to type, I purchased MirrorCracked and set up a hosting on SurpassHosting. I was so excited yesterday that I printed out the URL in big bold letters and stuck it in my cubicle! I plan to migrate to that domain pretty soon, once I get the hang of it.  It’s quite a pain to install themes and plugins and all that shit.

It’s funny how I started and ended the last paragraph on a shitty note.

Anyway, back to the main purpose of this post. I’m a well-known tag killer, as many people have realized the hard way over the past months. I frown upon being tagged and I hardly do any tags, because I usually have a backlog of posts going up to 10 to even 15 drafts at times – posts waiting to get published. On busy days, I log in, go to my drafts, pick a post and hit the publish button. In the midst of all this, Apar came up and requested an interview.

Ok, ok. I literally begged for it. She was grateful enough to spend a lot of time in thinking of questions for me, and today, at 7:19 pm, just like a Nadal forehand, slapped the questions on to me. I felt obligated to answer them immediately lest I forget.

1. Do you always choose matchboxes which are larger than your cigarette boxes?

Bigger Matches

Interesting history to this question. I think the image would explain better. I was desperate for a smoke and I did not have a matchbox/lighter on me. It’s very frustrating to be stuck with a lot of cigarettes and nothing to light them with. And a ridiculously huge pack of Home Lites matches was the best that Spencers was able to offer me. Sigh.

So, to answer the question, I’d have to say anything goes for me. Big or small, as long as the thing burns, I’m happy. But, of course, I prefer hot women to larger matches.

2. Where do you get your sense of humor from?

I wish I knew. I don’t even know if I have one. There was a time in my life when I was strung up by my underwear, from a rusty nail on the wall, and slapped around by my headmistress for calling her a fat moron. I guess that traumatized me enough to treat everything around me with a sense of awe-struck indifference.

3. How many personalities do you possess apart from the “God” persona?!

Ah, this is an interesting one. No one believes me when I say that I’m God. They think it’s either just a phase in life that people go through believing they’re divine or that I’m plain crazy. Denial will only fuel the fire, so I’ll refrain from making any sort of comment. I’m God. Period.

4. Since you claim to be God, what does nirvana mean to you?

Something that smells like teen spirit and tastes like beer. You know what I mean?

5. Beer on the dance floor or wine on the beach? (options do not include “both”)

Beer. Any day. Anywhere. Any time. Any mode of consumption. Any amount. I hate wine.