Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Indian Wedding Danceology

I have a cousin who’ll be getting married this year. He got engaged In January, and the “shaadi ka laddoo” will be stuffed down his throat in late October. He’s been gymming regularly, trying to lose the love handles. I won’t make a joke on the feeling of love that one loses a few years after marriage. My dadi will scold me if she hears such wisecracks. It’s a happy time and I should “shubh- shubh bol”.

My cousin’s preparations for the wedding include running on the treadmill for four hours a day, eating celery, making his fiancĂ©e’s sisters laugh at lame jokes, and fantasizing about the D-Day; while the rest of us deal with more important things such as deciding between a sherwani and a suit, deciding on the girls we will hit on from the opposite side, and thinking hard to make a list of all the embarrassing things that the soon to be groom has done over the past 26 years of his existence so that we have a better chance with the Indian bridesmaids than their very own jija-ji. My bua prompts another point to be put on the list of preparations. It’s deciding on a dance track that each of us will be dancing to at the wedding.

Considering the number of Sunny Deol fans in my family, I don’t think there is even one person among us all who doesn’t idolize the above named actor when it comes to the art of dancing. I’ve had my stint as a dancer in inter-college dance competitions in Delhi University, but let’s leave that story for another day. The Ahujas and the Kalras are to dance, what Shiamak Davar is to heterosexuality. So, to save everyone in my family from the blame of the apocalypse just two months before the world comes to an end, I have compiled a list of songs and dance moves that we are sure to be able to pull off perfectly. Before I present the list, I would like to thank all those from Bollywood who invented these moves.

Ek Pal Ka Jeena: The Pump and Clean

They say that the first impression is the last impression. Being butter chicken and shahi paneer eating Punjabis, no one understands the statement better than members of our clan. The impression of the first drop of orange butter chicken gravy on a white shirt is the last thing to leave the fabric. So, we plan to start the dance performances with an inspiration from the God of dancing in India. It’s sure to make all the ladies stop ogling at each other’s gold for a few seconds.

“Ek Pal Ka Jeena” from Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai introduced a step to the Indian masses that was not just easy to pass off as dance, but also much practiced by us all. Everyone from a Nokia 1100 to a BlackBerry Torch owner would break into a –keep one hand stationary and pump with the other- as soon as this Lucky Ali song would play at a birthday party. It was an instant rage. People did not just stop there. They loved to rub their palms away on their chest like Hrithik would do with his eleven fingers. The step is easy to pull off and is perfect for shaadi time in India, when people save their plates by keeping one hand stationary and pushing people away with the other. The lyrics “Khaali haath aaye the aur khaali haath jaayenge” also hold true as everyone does his best to eat enough to be able to compensate for the money gifted as sagan.

Woh Ladki Hai Kahan: The Chicken Dance of India

India was called the “sone ki chidiya” much before America was even discovered. There’s no way that they could have a Birdie/Chicken Dance before us. It took us a slimmer version of the present Farah Khan, a beardless Saif Ali Khan and a long forgotten about actress to get together and give the country its very own bird dance. “Woh Ladki Hai Kahan” from Dil Chahta Hai was an instant craze among toddlers and oldies alike. What makes it easier to dance to is that one doesn’t need the song to be played on a music system. One can just go “taen-nae-nae-nae-nae” with hardly any effort on the vocal cords and flap away to glory.

We’ll bird flap our way to pretty girls’ hearts with these “cute” steps after the macho Hrithik moves.

Dola Re Dola: The Sweat Patch Exhibit

Seeing the males dance like wild peacocks high on “hari chutney wale tikke”, the women are sure to get turned on and run towards the stage. Now, I have a plan. We want to impress the girls from the other side, but the dulhe ke saale sahib dare not check out our ma-behens. So, we’ll have “Dola Re Dola” from Devdas blare out of the Ahuja labeled speakers as soon the lehnga team lands on the dance floor. A lot of our families’ ladies are no less than Asin in the “Rexona No Paseena” advert, but c’mon, I bet all the talcum powder on Remo D’souza’s face can’t keep sweat from seeping through Chandni Chowk made wedding blouses and saaris. Muhuhahahaha. I dare you to get turned on by sweaty glitter. I dare you!

Jawani Phir Na Aaye: The Crotch Massage

A wedding is a time for celebrations. We’ll celebrate the unlimited glasses of Pepsi, Limca and Fanta. We’ll celebrate the qurbaani of the chicken who got buttered. And, we’ll celebrate the look on the dulhe ke saale sahib's face after we ruin his chances of eyeing our women. Ask Shiamak and he’ll tell you that celebration is dance. That brings us another dance to show off our moves and massage our crotches like Salman Khan ‘cuz we get the girls.

“Jawani Phir Na Aaye” from Mujhse Shaadi Karogi is one easy-sweasy step to show the flexibility in our bodies and at the same time rub it in the saale sahib’s face. Pun intended.

We’ll whack all the towels from the hotel’s housekeeping store, smear them with sweat and curry, and celebrate by reminding ourselves of our second foreign trip to the world capital of massages, Thailand.

Hudd Hudd Dabangg and Humka Peeni Hai: The Erectile Dysfunction Anthems of India

 It’s in our blood to show off. And we don’t just show off, we SHOW-OFF to remind others how we’re in a better place than them. We will not stop at just a gentle crotch massage. We’ll go a step ahead and boast about how we live life by Darwin’s theory of survival of the fittest.

The steps for these songs are easy. First, highlight the area where your body forks into two hairy beasts. Oh, sorry! Did I say “two”? I meant “three”. Then show how your pants refuse to fall down even on vigorous shaking because something solid holds it in place, preventing it to slip down until you unzip.

Second, make an airplane with your hands in front of your belt buckle; make it rise up and then immediately collapse in two seconds, thus telling the story of the opposition’s misery. It’ll remind them to take a trip via Agra after the celebrations, and will serve them right for trying to pelvic thrust their way to the dance floor!

Singh is Kinng: The Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Technique for Royals

Diabetes, Daaru and Dance is a deadly combination, and a big fat Punjabi wedding makes a crazy cocktail out of the given ingredients. Who said Punjabis were stupid as compared to Tamils? Sorry, sir, but we also make doctors who not only make money by operating on fellow-bhangra men but also give our Canada return ladies body enhancements that take all eyes away from the flower-laden stretch Camry that awaits the newlyweds after the “taaron ki chhaon mein” ceremony.

Since we’re all aware of the harmful effects of “ek peg aur” and heavy doses of food cooked in Madhusudan ghee, we’ll move towards the closing of our dance routine by punching ourselves on the chest with one hand, and holding our ladies in the other (for support). We’ll take all precautions to save our team members from a heart failure, but in style! The title track of Singh is Kinng will help us do so in a dance form for health conscious, ladies’ men, who pump their hearts using their dhaai kilo ke haath, and sway slowly in a state of inebriation.

Nagin: The Eff this Shit, It’s My Wedding Dance

Since all of us, excluding the dulhe raja, would have prepared for an evening of booty shaking; and going by the dance performance that my cousin put up at the time of his engagement, the climax of the dance routine will be when the unprepared dulha will not be able to resist the temptation to rape the dance floor with his only move. High on the thought of finally having landed with a girl, he’ll Nagin his way through uncles with glasses of whiskey on their heads. I’m sure no one will care for how he dances. ‘Cuz an uncle at the wedding will say: “Aaj khud naach raha hai, kal se who nachaayegi!”

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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Examorcist

I finished with another set of exams on Monday, the 18th of June, 2012. With “finished”, I mean finished for the time being. I might pass. I might fail. The two month long wait before the result is scary. It’s like a toupe-wearing 34 year old Rakesh Roshan waiting outside the Operation Theatre, worrying over his lover’s condition inside the red bulb room. The doctor walks out and says: “Inhe dawaaon ki nahi, duaaon ki zaroorat hai.” It’s too late for dawaa anyway. I can’t go back and study that one chapter that I chose not to prepare for the exam. And Dua better go help himself, first. He hasn’t done pretty well in these papers either, of what he told me. The wait is not just scary; it’s ghastly. Well, pretty much everything about exams is ghastly.

I had about a month to sit at home for my preparation this time. Preparing not just for the scary exams, but also for the difficult task of buttoning my trousers above the crotch after a thirty days’ break. The usual “Eat.Poop.Text.” ritual was religiously followed throughout the study break. And, then came the dreaded four days of continuous exams, which considering the amount of pseudo-diarrhea they put me through, literally made me lose my shit.

Considering the amount of chills the last one week sent down my spine, I have a few characters and elements that RGV must bring to life on screen so that there’s a small hint of horror in the horror movies that he makes.

The Maharani Rohini Ki Haveli

My Admit Card arrived in mail and spelt out the venue for the scarefest better than my name. It was again a dilapidated building in a corner of Rohini. There’s some sadistic pleasure that most exam organizing bodies get in making their students search for the exam centre for at least an hour and a half before the bell rings to halal and kaccha jhatka us all. It always has to be a creepy sounding name in some distant corner of the city. A building complex with a name like “Tiny Tots Public School” never lives up to the kind of expectations it builds up in the minds of the aspiring examinees. There is no girl “tota” enough to look at, and those expecting a flash of a replacement of “o” with an “i” in “Tots” are in for a big disappointment. But, why would they even expect such a thing out of “Tiny Tots Public School”? Serves them right, Bloody Tharkis.

The Wannabe-esque Daanav

On reaching the exam centre, the thing that catches one’s attention much before the “CBSE Affiliated” letters painted below the school’s name is a pair of Dholchi&Ghabrana branded sunglasses covering half the face of a Nikhil Dwivedi look-alike. Thinking about all the body fluids that he must’ve used to keep his hair spiked up and sport a forehead bang at the same time, makes you wonder if you’re at the venue for the much dreaded exam that you wished to appear for or a Dadagiri Audition on Bindass. He chews on some gum and showers synonyms of “********” between his chuckles. The checked shirt, skin fit jeans and a belt buckle as big as Amitabh Bacchan’s face is enough to scare the Puma chappals off your feet.

The Desk of the Monjolika

With fear, and some hope of being able to -settle down- after getting that professional degree, one goes into the exam room. The exam fat yukt bottom lowers itself down to rest on the wooden chair, and the dream of settling down in peace shatters into pieces. How dare one put one’s butt to Monjolika’s face! Now she vows to dance during the exam, torturing the examinee by tap dancing and shifting weight from a fore leg to the short and diagonally opposite hind leg. If one tries to write fast during the exam time, it wobbles in wrath, embarrassing the poor victim in a classroom full of tense fellow-examinees who make hissing sounds like toy pressure cookers to show their disappointment.

And just in case one thinks he’s lucky to be riding a Monjolika with even legs, the evil one places a hole right under the circle to be darkened on an OMR sheet. She’ll make you pay for her rape by a stained compass in the hands of an angry kid.

The Pseudo-Nerdosaurus

As soon as the invigilator starts reciting words ordering people to keep their bags outside, the Pseudo-Nerdosaurus roars never before seen questions at everyone around him. His words that sound like the Accounting equivalent of “Bhai, Einstein ke pubes ka mass calculate karne ka formula kya hai?” freak everyone out and they flip pages of their tutor’s notes, saying things like: “Yaar iska answer kahan hai? Shit yaar, bohot fatt rahi hai!

This frig of a Pseudo-Nerd Monster screws with everyone’s mental peace just a few seconds before the exam, making them fear the occurrence of that particular question in the paper. While everyone rummages through their spiral bound notes for the answer, he gives a poker troll face to the world.

The Bhoot Bhagaau Pundit Ji

A laal-tika wale pundit ji enters the room twenty minutes before the scheduled exam time and prepares himself for the bhoot bhagaau puja. Oh, I’m sorry. The puja starts ten minutes before he enters the exam hall. After reciting “maata-pita charan chhooatayami swaha” a hundred and eight times, he is fed some dahi, cheeni, charanamrit and tulsi. His walk from the school gate to the numbered seat on the first floor of the school is accompanied by the Hanuman Chalisa playing in his head. He religiously makes margins on the right side of the sheets with his pencil and ruler, and fights the urge to write the gayatri mantra on every page. He wants to print at least an “Om Sai Ram” on the first page, but the strict instructions forbidding one from making religious symbols flashes in front of his eyes like the full moon for a werewolf.

The What’sTheTime-Aasur

A close cousin of the Wannabe-isque Daanav, this monster recognizes himself as the nemesis of Mahabharat’s –Main Samay Hoon-. With nothing more than his roll number to write on the answer sheet, he repeatedly shrieks “Ma’am, how much time left?” at intervals of every seven and a half minutes. The Pundit Ji becomes an easy victim of his repeated growls and feels his blood pressure rising, which may also be half credited to the enormous amount of parshad he consumed before the exam. The Daanav partners with the Asur and never fails to reply to his queries about the time remaining. Smiles are exchanged between them, and the invigilator gets just as pissed off as the fellow examinees.

The Haaye Tota

Going by the standards of the above mentioned monsters, the “Tota” is usually a Sardarni with a long pig tail, jeans with sequined flowers and skin as soft as the kadha parshad. She is looked at by the examinees with an excuse to stare in a random direction and think. But, the “Haaye Tota” is a rare occurrence. She walks into the exam hall, typing messages on her white BlackBerry, which rests in the soft cushion of a pink silicon cover. Her look is enough evidence for the experienced to know that she is capable of “Aww”-ing at some of the questions while underlining key words in her answers with colored Staedtler pens. A Carmen Electra equivalent of the Scary Movie of an exam, she leaves the dead behind and passes the exam with distinction. Blame a DPS RKP or a BVN education here.

The exams get over and the characters merge into the buses, the Metro and the Hyundai Santros. They fail, they pass and they forge ahead. And then, they meet the ghosts of the corporate. It’s true how they say ghosts never die. It’s also true when I say they don’t.

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