The other day, I was reading the post of Anju titled “Am I old fashioned?” and couldn’t help but disturb the beehive of thoughts from erupting. What am I, Old fashioned or modern?
I have been accused of being old fashioned many a times. People who have called me so include, my friends, colleagues and even family members. I don’t remember exactly how many times I have been called or the frequency at which I have been called, but I think the last time was when I bought a Tissot watch and one of my colleague commented that it was rather old fashioned. In this context, old fashioned meant it was classic with gold and steel two tone bracelet and automatic mechanical movement. I was supposed to buy a sporty watch with colorful looks and big dial with many functions which was over-engineered for a normal daily use.
I have come to a realization that calling someone old fashioned is an offense by itself and we are all supposed to be ultra modern to qualify as desirable and chick. Said that, I feel I am more comfortable being old fashioned than being an ultra modern. There are several parts of me, which likes to be old fashioned, yet having grown and educated in an cosmopolitan environment, I can’t keep myself away from a modern lifestyle.
· I am a fauji (Army) Son and once was a fauji kid. I went to school in a Shaktiman ( No! it isnt the TV serial about half man and half machine starring AB lookalike) converted into a bus. I can still recall the particular smell of the CSD canteen, Hamam Soap, Ponds Dreamflower Talc & Surf. I still prefer Brooke Bond red Label tea, which, ever since I can remember had been our family tea brand. I still like Britannia Good day biscuits over several chocolate chip cookie brands that are flooded in the Carrefour’s and Wal-Mart’s.
· I am ultra loyal to my wife, when extramarital affairs and straying has become an accepted norm. I know some of my friends who cant wait to drop their wives back to India, to hunt new girlfriends. I somehow have grown out of the lure of carnal pleasures. Young girls in bikini don’t titillate me the way they used to. Of course I may give them a second look or probably admire them, so would I admire a good looking Dog or a cat and it’s not because my love juices are overflowing. I have realized that sex is a highly overhyped thing. I really don’t understand people committing rape, murder or child abuses, fully aware of the risks of being caught. How is it such an important thing that one would risk everything in life to attain few moments of pleasure?Of course sex sells, and since it sells, its been so much over glorified by the media that one wonders over the ground realities.For me sex is a manifestation or rather, an outcome of love. I know I sound hyper old fashioned.
· I like to get up early in the mornings and on holidays, like to visit a temple. I love to visit temples not because I am brimming with bhakti. I like the tranquility of the mornings and the ambiance of a temple, mixed with the sweet smell of Agarbatti. I remember, my friends would get up late in the afternoon and give me an awkward gape when they discover of me, coming back from the temple with a teekha( red markings on the forehead).I know of friends who would go to the morning mass in the Sacred heart church, just for bird watching( featherless birds).
· I find KFC, mc donalds or pizzahut highly over hyped and glorified eateries, just like sex. I mean, if I eat a meal at KFC ( I do so when I run out of options or in too much of hurry) I just cannot force myself to have another meal, atleast in the next couple of days. I love everything thats cooked by my wife or mom, even a kanji. In India it’s so fashionable to eat at a fast food restaurant.
· I love rural life of my hometown. I love to be woken by a rooster alarm and the smell of cow dung hovering in the air. I love the sweet, cool Well-water of my native to any Soft drink or Frappuccinos of Starbucks. My friends and colleagues find my tastes medieval, if not ancient.
· I like reading classics. I am currently reading (making an attempt to read) George Eliot’s classic- The Mill on the Floss., though extremely boring. My favorite books include Ernest Hemingway’s-The old man and the sea, The Great Gatsby-by Fitzgerald etc.
· My greatest fantasies include making a journey, like those of our ancestors in a bullock cart across India. But chances are that I might actually hate it because of all the traffic congestions I might create and all the curses I would be subjected to by the boisterous truck drivers. I wish I was born a thousand years before. But then on second thoughts, wonder about the medical systems and what if a plague or TB outbreak happens. No, thank you, I am fine in the 21st century.
What I was coming to is that I am a mélange of different eras. I am a part time Old-fashioned guy, who loves everything from the Victorian era(Mughal era), but cant stop admiring the progress mankind has made over the years and the positivity that comes with being in an modern world. I love my Diesel Denim( I am trying to impress, I just have levi’s) and Armani Exchange or D & G( I meant NEXT, Marks & Spencers) as much as Kurtha paijama or Dhoti( not lungis mallu’s wear).
Ciao all.( hope I made some sense)