Author Archives: Akhila

Namma marriage

#chatswithpeople #overheardinnammametro #55 #chatswithaunties #chatsaboutmarriage

First Telugu Aunty: and does she know any other languages?
Second Telugu Aunty: yes yes she knows (H)indi, Marathi, English and all languages.
Third Aunty nods sagely.

First: so it will be easy for her to adjust in Poona.
Second: oh yes, yes she will adjust very easily.
Third Aunty nods sagely.

First: and does she know how to cook?
Second: all dishes she knows.
Third Aunty doesn’t nod. We now know the girl cannot cook; this is a bald-faced lie.

First: very lucky she is. The boy it seems will go to Hamerica it seems.
Second: yes yes next year.
Third Aunty nods gingerly. Next year is too far.

First: this Trump-u is worst-u. He has made so many rules and regulations. Now it is difficult for our people to go there.
Second: yes yes but this boy has the H1B visa already.
Third Aunty and I look puzzled. He already has a H1B visa? When he’s going only next year?

First returns to important matters: what about masalas? Will she be able to make masalas?
Second: yes she knows but we will write and give it also.
Third Aunty looks straight ahead. She and I know that a joyous life of Taco Bell beckons the young couple.

First asks Third: you must be very happy your daughter is getting married. How much gold will you be giving?
Second: we are going now only to see the size of the suitcases.
Third Aunty starts coughing.

First: is she planning to work there?
Second: she has done. B. Ed. But her father fought with the university head so they are not giving her certificates. I think she can work without that only in Hamerica.
Third Aunty drinks water.

My stop arrives. I try to stop myself from asking Second for hype/presentation lessons and leave, tail between my legs.



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Shankarappa woke up at 5 am. This was a waste. His awful wedded wife had screeched the house down all through last week. There was no choice today. He was at the centre by 6 am, receiving pots of ink and a brush. He sneered at the brush while eating his complimentary upma. What an insult. What a joke. Could this even be called a brush? What would the legends say if they saw him now? His muse had stopped speaking to him years ago, practically five minutes into his wedding. And now he could hear his anti-muse, his wife, all the time. Even when he stuffed cotton in his ears. He straightened his shoulders. He'd show them all. As the girl stepped up to him fearfully, he concentrated. Jackson Pollock my ass, he thought. I'll show them abstract art. And he went to work. The entire polling booth went silent. He smiled triumphantly. They knew they were in the presence of genius. Why, the girl even started shedding tears, looking at her finger. Unexpectedly, it was going to be a good day. #jacksonpollock #abstractart #daubs #painters #fiction #painting #abstract #voting #polling #vote #karnataka #elections – #regrann @lafictionista

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The Song of Lunch

#chatswithpeople #chatswithparents #chatswithmeanoldladies #chatswithbats ? #beingfat #54

Last week
Me: HOW LONG is Granny aka Super Mean Old Lady with NO FILTER staying?
Mum: a week.
Me: that’s 6 days and 23 hours too long.

Day 4
Mum: only 3 more days.
Me (surly): how can you tell them apart? It feels like we’re in a time loop, with the same conversations every day.
Granny enters.

Mum: would you like some coffee or tea, Amma?
Granny: no, no, I’ll become fat.
Me (what does she mean “become”?): Mum, I’d like a second cup, please.
Bitch Granny: oho. Why? You’ll become fat.
Me What does she mean “become?”): I think I’ll risk it.

Mum: okay. Lunch is rice and gravy ok Amma?
Bitch Granny: yes, yes, no more. I’ll become fat.
Me (What does she mean…Fuck it. EVEN MY THOUGHTS ARE IN A LOOP)

Granny turns her beady little eyes on me: are you skipping lunch?
Me: what?? Never. I’m planning to eat seconds.
Granny (outraged): but you’ll become FAT!

Me: I am FAT! Too late!
Granny: yes! But skip lunch, and dinner, and breakfast and you’ll be THIN! Then you can get married!

Me: I’ll be dead too. Difficult to do a pooja when you’re dead.
Granny: Nonsense! No one dies of not eating anything. You just need to get thin enough so a boy will marry you.

Me: then you find this boy and make HIM skip lunch. After all, he gets to marry me.
Granny: no one wants to marry a fat girl.
Me: then no point skipping lunch anyway.

Granny: you’re so stubborn it’s hopeless.
Me: maybe that’s why I’m so tragically single? oh well. I’ll go eat lunch.
Granny, hitting her head: I don’t want to speak to you anymore.

Me: mum, mum, I WON! It only took like 35 years!
Mum: I still haven’t won; it’s been 37.
Me: eat lunch. Maybe that’ll help.

Cussing with mother

#chatswithparents #chatswithmum #profanity #howpeoplespeak #53


Mum and I are watching The Marvelous Mrs Maisel.
Character 1: …fucking fucks.
Character 2: fucking..fuck…fuck.
Me: delighted grin and recognition (my people!)

Mum: appah, these people swear so much. I don’t know anyone who swears this much.
Me: um….
Mum: no, seriously, I don’t think ANYONE swears this much. It’s incredibly vulgar.
Me: hmmm (fuck)

Mum: do you know anyone who swears like this?
Me: (fuck) I know a…friend, yes. My friend swears a lot.
Mum (outraged): who is this friend? Does she know it’s impolite?
Me: …ummm sort of. She doesn’t do it to everyone. Or at least, not at first meeting. She’s famous for it, really.

Mum: is she married?
Me: (fuck!) no.
Mum: is she working in an office somewhere?
Me: (Fuck!) no.
Mum: is she thin?
Me: (FUCK!) no.

Mum: hmph. No wonder. She must be doing it for the attention.
Me: ????? NO mum that’s not why I-mmyyyy friend does it at all. I think she just likes it. It’s sort of an outlet for when things don’t go her way or people fu-fool around with her. Ahem.
Mum: chee. Whatever.
Me: (fu-phew).

Chasing money


Tring tring.
Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna.
Me:……………(NO. WHAT? NO.)
Interviewer: hello?
Me: yes, hi! Is this Interviewer?
Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna, yes.
Me: (I DIDN’T MISHEAR IT OMG WTF DO I DO NOW?) um. Hi. I’m calling about the opening for Creative Head?

Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna, yes. How are you?
Me: (oh, that’s actually nice.) Fine, thank you. How are you?
Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna. Very well. Life has been kind. Krishna has been merciful.
Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna, so tell me about yourself.
Me: (I’m the unluckiest person in this world right now) (I unreel bio)

Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna, very good. Tell me.
Me: yes?
Interviewer: Are you a great writer? Jai Shri Krishna. Because we need GREAT writers.
Me: well, that would be for others to say right? I mean…isn’t it subjective?
Interviewer: I don’t understand.
Me: I mean, you know, great writing or any sort of art is defined by the audience or people viewing it rather than creating it…?
Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna?
Me: (giving up) I wouldn’t say great (also because then you’d bring it up in EVERY appraisal saying but you told us you were a great writer) but I’m very good.

Interviewer: But you see, we want GREAT writers. Like amazing. Simply wow.
Me:…………………………………………………………………(many words that cannot be printed)
Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna. Are you there?
Me: ahem. Yes. Hi. So um…
Interviewer: We are also a ruthless team. The sales is ruthless, the other writers are ruthless and the marketing is ruthless. Even our office staff are ruthless.
Me: um.
Interviewer: And they are all GREAT. Like, the office staff is GREAT at making coffee, yes. Jai Shree Krishna.
Me:…..Jai Shree Krishna (FUCK WHY AM I SAYING IT NOW?) okay. I’m not sure how to take this forward.

Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna. Also, how old are you?
Me: I’m 35.
Interviewer: HOMYGORD. That old? You are extremely experienced.
Me: (that’s what he said—no wait this isn’t the time!) Um. I thought you were looking for a Creative Head?

Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna, yes but you’d have to report to me. Are you okay reporting to a younger person?
Me: (younger person yes. you, I’m not sure.) sure? Could we discuss salary?
Interviewer: yes, we will pay 8 peanuts.
Me: right. So there’s one thing about your organization that isn’t GREAT, then.

Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna? Oh also, it depends on how many awards you win.
Me: (I’m going to kill that recruiter. Fricking dismember. Twist arms and legs off. Bloody well-)
Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna, GREAT chat. But I have a meeting now so can we chat tomorrow again?

Me: (over the recruiter’s dead effing body) Of course. Go forth and be ruthless.
Interviewer: Jai Shree Krishna?
Me: I mean, goodbye. And Jesus is great.
Me: Jai Shree Krishna?
Me: (hung up)

So you write things down?

#Chatswithpeople #chatswithclients #chatswithparents #chatsinadvertising

Tring tring.
Prospective Client (PC): hello?
Me:…yes, hi. I’m Hapless Poor Writer and I was given your number in reference to Undefined Freelance Work That You Will Change the Brief of At Least Twice But Fuck I’m Poor and Desperate.

PC: oh yeah yeah. We’ve actually changed the scope of that work.
Me: of course. right…so now it’s…?
PC: undefined Freelance Jelly That Might Become Custard or Pudding But Will Definitely Turn Your Brains Into Jelly

Me: (sigh) brilliant. So how do we take this forward?
PC: why don’t you send us an initial proposal?

Me: sure…so I was thinking we could do Things on Instagram, Things on Facebook and Some More Things on Twitter. Along with Other Ideas. Does that work for you?
PC: that sounds great and bang on brief.
Me: okay, so I’ll mail you that then.

A day later.

PC: hey hi, so your proposal doesn’t work for us…can you re-do?
Me: sure, could we please quickly discuss the parts that don’t work?
PC: all of them.

Me:…o-kay. (BUT YOU SAID IT WAS BANG ON BRIEF BITCH WTF WAS THAT THEN) So what direction would you like me to work in?
PC: to make our brand famous.
Me:…right, perhaps we could narrow that down.
PC: to make our brand really famous.
Me: (through gritted teeth) certainly. and what should people do after your brand is very famous?
PC: Buy it.

Me:….sure. But we might not be able to structure all social media communication all the time around that…or that directly even…so what would you say is the campaign goal?
Me: awareness? Product features? Likeability? Likes?
PC:…let me check with my team get back to you.
Me: right, sure.

A day later.
PC: hi so we want to do Things on Instagram, Things on Facebook and Some More Things on Twitter. Along with Other Ideas.
Me:….yes, I believe that was my plan too…

PC: no, this is different from your plan.
PC: my team feels that your plan was lacking in focus and wouldn’t make us famous. But this one will. Your plan is Jelly, but this plan is Custard.
Me: okay. (I need money. I need money. I need money.) so if Custard is the goal, then would you like to explore Fruit Toppings and Ice Cream?
PC: yes.
PC: also…
Me: yes?
PC: could you give us an option for Jelly? It might help to explore our options.

Tring tring.
Dad: hello ma?
Dad: ah? What happened ma?
Dad: um…I don’t think that exchange scheme was available when your siblings were born.
Me: banging head against wall.

Eagle eye

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It was already four and they hadn't arrived yet. She tut-tutted to herself. Young people today had no sense of time. She'd been ready since three, her maid's uniform ironed to razor sharpness and a broom stolen from hotel housekeeping. And they were late. Which was surpriskng because in her experience, adulterers were normally early. She sighed. She had an embezzler to stalk at six. She'd already bugged the window and table so she was covered but she always liked being able to listen in and report back to clients the same day. Plus adulterers were the cutest. She swept dispiritedly and hoped they'd turn up soon. #buglife #detective #eagleeye #privateeye #sherlock #affair #cafe #cheater

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