Saturday, August 14, 2010

Conversations- The Green Volvo

S- Oh my God!

K- I know!

S- She totally hated your fracking guts!

K- I know!

S- She kept telling everyone in college you had AIDS. And everyone believed her because you had an accent so naturally that meant you probably had AIDS too!

K- I know!

S- Why she is calling you? What does it mean when people who hate you that much call you? Should you be scared? I think you should be scared.

K- Well as far as I can tell, she found out that I have no job and no husband and that made her so exceedingly happy she just HAD to get my number and call me up and tell me about how she heard I have no job and no husband.

S- Ah. Many people call me for the same reasons. It seems to make them very happy.

Anyway, I figured this was a good time to ask her why she hated me so much. Considering she didn't even know me.

What did she say?

She said, and I quote, "Well basically it was because you were so arrogant" So I asked her what I had done that was so arrogant. And she said well basically you walked with a very arrogant manner.


K- Then we had a very strange conversation because she started talking about her Volvo.

S- So?

Well she pronounced Volvo in a very…interesting way.

Did it sound like she was saying ‘chiropractor’?

K- No.

S- Arachnophobia?

It sounded like she was saying ‘vulva’.

S- Wow. And also, yes I can see that happening.

K- You can imagine my confusion when she informed me that it was a nice dark green and she was really excited about the upholstery and sound system.

S- Yes. That would definitely be confusing.

K- So I tried to clarify this, because I am stupid. And then we had this very tedious back and forth that went ‘I thought you said vulva!’ ‘Volvo only I said’. ‘Vulva. Not Volvo’. ‘Volvo only’. ‘Vulva! Vulva!’. ‘Yeah, Volvo. That’s what I said.’ So I decided to make things worse by spelling it out for her.

S- And?

K- And she said there was no need to say such obscene and arrogant words to her and I was obviously jealous of her Volvo.

S- Did she mean her car or-

K- I thought it better not to clarify that.

S- And also, vulva is an obscene and arrogant word? Really?

K- She says it is. So it must be true.

What about ‘elbow’, is that obscene and arrogant too?

K- Not sure. It might be if it’s a woman’s elbow.

S- Uterus?

K- Oh definitely. That’s definitely obscene and arrogant.

S- Worse than fallopian tube?

K- Way worse.

S- This is very confusing. How are we supposed to know what words are obscene and arrogant? Is there a guidebook or something?

K- There should be, no? Anyway, so she got really pissed off at me for being obscene and arrogant to her, although she was very pleased at my Volvo- envy. And before she hung up on me she said I was a gay also.

S- What’s a gay also?

K- I don’t know. I think it's those hammocks that hip and wealthy Indians use in the summertime.

S- Oh how nice! I’ve seen gay alsos in ads for insurance and whitening creams!

K- Yeah. Not sure why she called me that though.

S- Maybe she called you something that just sounded like ‘gay also’. Like chiropractor.

K- Right.

S- Or arachnophobia.

K- Yes.

S- I’m never buying a Volvo. Ever. There’s just too much drama attached to the word now.

K- I’m never saying that word ever. I will just say foreign carcar like everyone else.

And now, an edited version of something that was originally about Gandhi Jayanthi but it works just as well for forthcoming Independence Day. Advance Vazhga Bharathams and Jai Hinds homibabaterroristpeepals.

Things We Can Do To Make the Occasion of Independence Day Moar Better

Refrain from making statements like ‘India was better off when the British were here’

I understand but am flabbergasted nonetheless that this is a popular school of thought with many people, particularly those who lament the loss of ‘clean roads, people who spoke proper English and Yardley’. And while you are of course free to believe this, why not keep it inside your head, just for one day. Also, if you are so nostalgic for those milk and honey days of English rule, you might look into moving to the UK. The BNP in particular will be oh so glad you came.

Refrain from pretending that you don’t know what Independence Day is because you totally don't live here, like really.

This is particularly mystifying behavior to see among people who have spent all their lives in India. Just fyi, blinking and saying ‘Oh! And what do you Indians do on Independence Day?’ will not make people turn to you and say, oh! You must be from America or London. This behavior is not only very weird, it is sad and it embarrasses everyone more than elevetyhundred PutOn accents. Stop hating yourself. You are fabulous. Indian Independence is fabulous. You and Indian Independence are fabulously fabulous.

Refrain from Using This Day to Launch Assorted Acts of Violence

Let’s avoid using August 15th as a day for sending rallying calls to bomb Pakistan, China, Bangladesh, America, Europe, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, atheists, homosexuals, heterosexuals, asexuals, rich people, poor people, educated people, illiterate people, upper caste people, low caste people, mixed caste people, no caste people, yes caste people, Westernized people, Easternized people, tourists, sex workers, people who visit sex workers, people who don’t visit sex workers, poets, people who hate poets, people who love poets, people who pretend to be poets, people who don't pretend to be poets, artists, con artists, street artists, nonartists, Bollywood, Tollywood, Kollywood, communists, doctors, dentists, actors, lawyers, women, children, men. Seriously, I don’t think Indian Independence was ever supposed to be about bombing any of these peeps or any other kinds of peeps. Ever.

Also, you know how sometimes we do that thing where other people come to our country and tell us what a fuckup this country is and how we should listen to them because they are here on vaycay and obviously know exactly how to make everything in India moar better? And sometimes our own one number countrypeople will say we should listen to these othercountry people because they know everything and we just live here and don’t know anything? You know how we sometimes do that?

Let’s not do that. Just for one day. Let’s consider the fact that maybe, just maybe, Indians living in India might have a good idea of what’s going on here and how to make things moar better for us. So when someone says ‘your country is a fuckup and you should listen to me so you guys can make everything moar better’, let them do talkingtalking, then ask them for foreign fundage for funding these awesome India-improving steps. Then take the foreign fundage and go enjai like anything. I think that would be a fun way to spend Independence Day.



Anonymous said...

I don't think I'll be able to happily sit in a Volvo again. Thank you Kuzhali Manickavel. Also, Happy Independence Day. Your piece was so fine that I felt like joining the army and watching DD and singing national integration songs.

Space Bar said...

Yay! I missed seeing your bald head in the NIE this morning. Nothing is the same any more. That lady with the green vulva should send foren fundage.

Sharanya said...

Whattay great Conversations!

kuzhali manickavel said...

@ anonymous- yore welcome, it's called the volvo effect. alsoalso, heppy independence day to you too :)

@ space bar- i think that's a splendid idea. at the very least, she can donate her volvo

@ sharanya- ohai! thanks for reading i say :)

G said...

I yam a gay also and want to rub my face on the warm, fuzzy upholstery and check sound system of many vulvas now...simbly jest like that wonly..

Anonymous said...

In school some twenty-five years ago in America I took elective Latin class. Yes, this was kind of a geeky thing to do. However one cool thing we learned was the technique used by the epic poets of starting the story "in media res", that is, right in the middle of things. I would just like to say that I think the Conversations series uses the "in media res" technique very effectively. In this way, you have much in common with the epic poets of ancient Rome. Also, you write about vomit sometimes.

Annie Zaidi said...

such fun

Chettinad Cow Girl said...

Miss K I have two words for you and I mean them whole heartedly and happily and proudly
Jai Hind!

By the by a completely unrelated question- I want to know why all the UFO'S and exposed to nuclear radiation mutated reptiles are only visiting New York city? Why can't they come to Chennai ever? At least now they go to Johannesburg. Now if I fast and pray hard enough do you think we will get our very own encounter with a third kind? will I also have to shave my head and sell my kidney? I know you and only you have the correct answer.
Yours in hope.

Subashini said...

My father owned a green Volvo when I was a child.

Life will never be the same for me again, Kuzhali. I hope you can write a book to help me deal with this, thank you.

kuzhali manickavel said...

@ G- ohai! it is my understanding that many gayalsos are having this feelings. it is also known as the volvo effect

@ anonymous- tanksya :) i am proud to have much in common with the epic poets of ancient Rome, not sure how the epic poets of ancient Rome feel about it tho

@ annie zaidi- hai, thanks for reading i say!

@ chettinad cow girl- jai hind to you too i say :) it is my belief that ufos and nuclear radiation mutated reptiles HAVE arrived. the ufos themselves have been dismantled and are being sold in pudupet while the aliens are being sold as toys in pondy bazaar. the reptiles are hiding inside the cooum because they are scared of the 'air volvo' buses. this is also known as the volvo effect

@ subashini- i understand how you feel because this too is known as the volvo effect. i will definitely write a book and give you first dibs on the leading role when i make the book into a movie

Scherezade said...

My best friend went to a fat farm recently (or is that "horizontally endowed agricultural perimeter"?). In the sauna room she saw more middle aged half-naked women than at a Republican fundraiser and somehow yelled out "vulva" rather loudly when someone tried initiating conversation about the yoga sessions.
It didn't help that she followed the shriek by singing "Stacy's Mom".
So anyway, my point is, Maruti is better than Volvo. Jai Hind!

kuzhali manickavel said...

jai hind i say! the anecdote of your best friend makes a lot of sense. when in the sauna area of a horizontally endowed agricultural perimeter and surrounded by middle aged half-naked women, it is only natural to yell out the word vulva and then sing 'stacy's mom'. because stacy's mom has got it going on.

i hope it wasn't unpatriotic of me to talk of volvos instead of marutis.

To be human is err!!!! said...

@ kuzhali...hello sis i jus finished reading u r book i have never read such a work humble appreciations :-)u r blog is the most interesting one i have ever come across..keep rocking all the best :-)

kuzhali manickavel said...

hai, thanks very much for reading and appreciating my book and blog, i appreciate your appreciations :)

sarath said...

glad :-)in order to kill volvo-vulva konfusion let us call foreign car as "vuolvao" jus "o pottufy to vulva"

kuzhali manickavel said...

i think that's a wonderful idea. volvo can start an allindia campaign called o podu

mridula said...

After the story in the Tehelka Fiction issue I should have run out to get your book. I meant to. What happened? This reminds me and am running now.

Anonymous said...

kuzhali, thank you muchly for zapping some light into my dark-drudgey time at business school. i love this blog and your whimsical writing and my boyfriend just told me on gtalk i should "go make love to her (you)". therefore you are responsible for driving a wedge through my relationship. worssht!


kuzhali manickavel said...

hai mridula koshy! i am so pleased to see you on my blawg :) please ren and ren and buy my book, i myself will also ren and ren to get your book also. you will ren and i will ren.

hai anonymous, thanks for loving the blog and saying nice things :) please apologize on my behalf to yours one number baifriends. it is very worsht to drive wedges in the relationships, frahndships and basically all forms of ships also. these wedges should not be confused with wedgies, which are also very worsht also

shruti said...

heyhey!K and s are still talking! Muchthrilled to see the vulva celebration, and you should get a 'special mention' for bringing up the burning,but nevertalked about problem of vulva-jealousy.
all the homibabaterroristpeepals plan to hold a convention to celebrate,where we will also give the 'special mention'. In these trying are bringing much joy, maedam.

kuzhali manickavel said...

hai linkless shruti :) i greatly look forward to this convention of the homibabaterroristpeepals and when they give me the special mention and i say aw thanks and they say dont mention, i will say you are all very clever and i like you all very much

shruti said...

if you will say such things, the convention will like you much more and might even make you mascot.we will consider very strongly.
Mascot gets special promotional table where their books can be sold. no discount,full price.
convention president will watch and listen to oru poongavanam, much beautiful song just before convention starting, so will make honourable mention of vulva-jealousy attention bringer.tanks we say. As said before, it is a burning issue.
and this is 'night from loonytunes.

kuzhali manickavel said...

-convention president will watch and listen to oru poongavanam, much beautiful song just before convention starting, -

i can actually see and hear this happening. small group of very glum and disinterested girls singing but they will actually be singing it very well and one will be surprised that such nice singing can come from such glum and disinterested girls.


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