Feb 18, 2018

943. I was Captain Haddock or Tintin

When I was in class five, I had a habit of sleeping under the bed with Tintin comics. The book " The Red Sea Sharks" was my favorite because it was the only Tintin book I had.

My folks inculcated reading habit in me at a very young age. Tinkle, Archie comics, Enid Blyton series, Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys were a part of my childhood.

Tintin was my favorite of them all because I loved Captain Haddock's curses "Ten thousand thundering typhoons and Billions of Bilious blue barnacles". I added his curses in my vocabulary and used it with my friends. None of them understood them.

On weekends, I would use my dad's black shoe polish and draw a beard on my face and become Captain Haddock. When my dad hid his shoe polish, I had no other option but attempt a mohawk hairstyle and become Tintin himself.

My pet dog Bubbly would become Snowy and we will have great adventures in our home by climbing walls and trees only to receive constant complaints from neighbors.

No other book had the power to transport me to another world. But the  Belgian cartoonist Herge's artistic skills almost made me picture myself as one of the characters in the book.

I have never got bored reading that one book again and again. It reached a point where my parents would hide that book during exam time. Tintin, the reporter would investigate in different countries and the cartoonist Herge would transport the reader to that particular country with his detailed cartoons.

I have not touched this book in the last 15 years. But I know that this book will be on my bookshelf in my father's house. When I go to my hometown during the next vacation, I will once again, take this book out, smell the papers and relive my childhood days.

-Chronicwriter

Feb 13, 2018

942. My Valentine's day date with Renu (School day Romance)


I used to be a hunk when I was in high school. The girls in my class were crazy about me. They were particularly jealous of my then-girlfriend Renu.

She used to tell me that they always troubled her with sarcastic remarks. She even told that they used to scribble funny graffitis about me in the girls' restroom. I, being a 14-year-old teenager became curious and asked her what those lines were

Renu: "Chriz is a hunk" is one of those lines

Me: *Smiling to myself* Anything else? (I was expecting more praises)

Renu:  Minu even scribbled " Chriz comes in my dream every night"

Me: She looks cute

I got a punch on my face

Renu: Look! If you talk like this, I won't be your date this valentines day

Me: Sorry sweetheart! Anything else about me on the restroom wall?

Renu: Shilpa wrote "Amazing arms! That fellow Chriz has."

Me: Does she like my muscles?

Renu: I think so. How do I look?

And she started to blink her eyes.

Me: You look like a doll

Renu: Don't lie. Sandhya had scribbled "Renu is indeed lucky to have Chriz."

That made me go to cloud 9. I walked around the school campus with my head held high.Valentine's day was just around the corner and I was planning to celebrate it big time with Renu.

On 13th February 1996, Renu came running to me and said that the girls had written something bad about me in the girls’ toilet. After much pestering, she told me what they had written about me.

“Chriz wets his bed in his sleep”. 

I did not take it seriously because I had gone through insults that were worse than this. I carried on with my studies like a perfect gentleman that day.

The very next day, the school management dragged me out of the class for interrogation. I was told that they found something scribbled on the walls of the girls' toilet that read,

“No! I do not wet my bed in my sleep”.

Now, do you guys doubt me too?

Note: Renu did not celebrate Valentine's day with me that year as I spent my time kneeling down outside the Principal's office.

-Chronicwriter

Feb 9, 2018

941. I was thrashed because I loved Renuka Sahane



When I was 10 years old, I started developing a crush on Renuka Sahane of Surabhi Fame. Surabhi was a lovely program which was telecasted in Doordarshan in the early nineties. I used to wait for every Sunday to watch this program. 

During those days robbers used a new strategy of using small kids to steal valuables from houses. Seeing my ever increasing habit of staying up late to watch Surabhi, my parents came up with a new rule at home. 

The new rule shattered my love into bits and pieces as the rule did not permit me to stay awake after 9.30 pm. I was banished to my room every night after 9.30 pm. So I missed my favorite programs - "world this week, Oshin, Byomkesh Bakshi and of course Surabhi”. 

But my love for Renuka would often make me sneak into the drawing room where I would hide behind the French window curtains and watch Surabhi. On one such occasion, my dad happened to see my leg under the curtains. 

He took me for a robber. Being a brave man unlike me, he jumped from the couch like Tarzan and landed in front of the curtain, wrapped me around along with the curtain and what happened after that was pure disaster.

No one has ever thrashed me like that in my life. Maybe he too might have had a crush on Renuka.(My Mom reads my blogs too)

-Chronicwriter

Feb 8, 2018

940. Different ways to get pregnant



When I was in class 2, my classmate Arun told me that if a boy shook hands with a girl, she would become pregnant. I was so scared to shake hands with any girl in my class as I was not ready to father a child at such a tender age.

When I was in class 3, I discovered that a baby needs to be inside the mother’s tummy for a default period of nine to ten months. The discovery made a big impact in my liking towards biology at a later stage in my life.

I would rate this discovery as the discovery that revolutionized me. My discovery was disproved by my aunt’s son who did not have the patience to stay inside her tummy for more than 6 months.

They call him a premature baby. But I have doubts if she was already pregnant when she got married. But I am not gonna dig into the details.

But back then, when I was in that confused state, my girlfriend Renu took advantage of the situation and shook hands with me. I was so petrified for the next ten months that I would often check Renu’s tummy for any bulging effects. 

After ten months, her tummy did not bulge. I gave her two months grace period too and when she did not deliver a baby even after one whole year, I was convinced that shaking hands doesn’t help in the baby making process. 

One fateful day when I was just nine years old, my teacher Anu started throwing up when she was taking classes. When she was throwing up, one of her co-teachers came to lend her a helping hand. Later we were told that she was pregnant.

So I came to the conclusion that vomiting results in baby birth. But a few days later when I became Ill, I started to throw up too and I had a doubt that I might be pregnant.

It was a great mystery then. It was the most confusing topic for me.

But then when I was in class 8, we had this sex education classes in school and I enlightened myself with all the necessary information with my never-ending questions which often resulted in the teacher blushing in front of us.

- Chronicwriter

Feb 7, 2018

939. Bajaj Sunny and the girls who were crazy about me


I was doing my final year of Engineering (2002) when this photo was clicked. My dad bought this bike for my sister. But I was the one who used it most of the time. If you have used this bike, you can relate to this post. 

Bajaj Sunny was the elder sister of Scooty. She came into the market which was ruled by Kinetic Honda. When Bajaj Sunny came into the Indian market, all the girls who were riding a BSA SLR or LadyBird bicycle immediately upgraded themselves to this bike. My sister belonged to that category. It was purely a ladies bike.

It was nothing more than a bicycle with a motor attached to it. You could call it a hybrid version of a moped. With the speedometer having a max limit of 80 kmph, the Bajaj Sunny could reach supersonic speeds of 40 kmph. Whenever the needle hit 40 kmph, the handle will start to gyrate. The bike had a plastic body.

My parents had a policy of not giving me the bike till I got my license. However, the same rule was not applicable for my sister. Women had their way with things and they had their say in decisions at my house.

I would feel like Arnold from Terminator while riding this bike. I would visualise that the babes in our hometown were crazy about my riding skills. Every evening, I would wear a cooler (The one that I bought for Rs 20/- from Kanyakumari) and ride the bike. Stylenu nenachuttu Piles vandhavan maadhiri I will sit on the bike and ride. Not even a fly or crow would look at me.

My Dad was noticing my behaviour for some time. My sister, mom and dad secretly conspired against me and sold the bike without my knowledge. They knew how to nip my romantic thoughts in the bud.

-Chronicwriter


Feb 5, 2018

938. A visit to Gell Memorial School Ooty where my mom studied


How does it feel to go back to your school after 50 years? When my sister came down to India in 2016, my mom decided to take us all to the place where she studied. Mom studied at Gell Memorial School in Ooty. So off we went to the school as a family. A proud grandmother with her three grandchildren walked into the school premises. In the above picture clicked by me, my mom had already overtaken all of us, scampering her way into the Principal's office.

I was worried in particular because the classes were going on and I was hoping that we should not be kicked out. We all followed her to the Principal's room and there she was sitting and talking with the Principal. The Principal gave too much of respect to my mom because of her age. If I go back to my school or college, I would be literally kicked out for the kind of behaviour I exhibited in my youth. 

A row of photos adorned the pink wall in the Principal's room. My mom proudly pointed at the two foreign ladies in the photos and said "That is Miss Mallalieu and Miss Kitchen. They are our God Mothers". In Mainline Christian denominations " God Parents" take care of the spiritual well being of children. My mom went into an Autograph Cheran mode.



Then we came out and my mom wanted me to click a picture right in front of the school assembly stage. Apparently, that is the exact place she used to stand and lead the school prayer it seems with her songs. She went on and on with her school day stories.


We were bored. But my mom was reminiscing her childhood days and we just wanted her to have fun. One day, I will take Anya to my school and show her around and she will write about it in her blog.

-Chronicwriter

Feb 3, 2018

937. The Great Wall of India



How would you feel if you are selected as a replacement for one of the finest left-handers of your time (Vinod Kambli) only to be labelled by the media as a slow cricketer lacking the flamboyance of the left-hander you replaced?

How would you feel when you score two magnificent hundreds in your very first world cup appearance but someone else gets the accolades on both occasions?

In his first world cup appearance (1999), he scored two hundreds against Kenya and SriLanka; but in both these matches, another cricketer took the honours. In the match against Kenya even though he scored 104, every one praised Sachin for the 140 runs he scored two days after his father's death.  In the match against SriLanka, he scored a brilliant 145. But Ganguly was the man of that match for his brilliant 183 in that match.

How would you feel when you have to become the wicketkeeper of the team and end up being criticised by the media because you are not a natural wicketkeeper?

How would you feel when you become the Captain of the Indian Cricket team but an idiotic coach (Greg Chappel) does not allow you take decisions?

How would you feel if even after playing for 16 years for the country, you always end up playing second fiddle to Tendulkar?

How would you feel when you eventually become a coach of the Indian Under 19 team and make them stronger in every department only for them to choke in the finals against a weak West Indian team in the finals?

Many would have called it quits. But this man still had faith in what he loved the most. He made sure that the boys won the 2018 U19 world cup, that too in style.

Take a bow! Rahul Dravid. You always stand tall. You are the cricketer we wanted, but not the one we deserved because we always took you for granted.

If 2011 World Cup win was dedicated for Sachin, the 2018 World Cup win is surely a dedication for the Great Wall of India - Rahul Dravid.

- Chronicwriter

Feb 2, 2018

936. How I stopped wetting my bed

My Sister and me

Today my friend's 10-year-old son posted a status message on Facebook stating that he was heartbroken because his girlfriend ditched him. 

At his age, I was still wetting my bed. My mom would ask me to carry the mattress to the rooftop and leave it there in the sunlight for it to dry. 

My neighbors would see me dragging the bed up the stairs and they would say " Hey Chriz, That is 100 days in a row".

My parents tried many ways to stop me from bed wetting. They stopped giving me water after 8 pm. But still, my bladder had the capacity to produce uric acid out of thin air. 

Then they kept alarm clock at 3 am and made me go to the loo to empty my bladder. Still, I would end up wetting my bed between 3 am and 6 am.

I would literally pray every night for strength not to wet my bed. But every night the bladder would win the battle of wits. 

One night I decided not to sleep to find the exact time the bedwetting process culminated. Around 4 am, I saw my sister walking towards me with a tumbler of water.

I acted as if I was sleeping. She poured it on my bed and went back to her bed and slept as if nothing happened.

Tears started flowing down my cheeks to realise that I had been a victim of soolchi done by my sister all these years. Out of sadness, I ended up wetting my bed that night.

The next day onwards, I told my parents that I won't sleep in my bed; but on the floor. Never ever did I wet my bed.

I am revealing this truth after many years. I hope that you all will not reveal this secret to anyone else.

-Chronicwriter

(Note: Floor wetting cannot be included in bedwetting department)

Jan 30, 2018

935. The crazy lunatic cricketer from India

He would sniff and twirl his nose while gripping the bat. He was a heavy smoker and he had breathing difficulty. I saw him in the 1987 world cup where he scored a quickfire 75 of just 58 balls. That scoring rate was a rarity those days.

That is when I noticed this crazy opener from India. He did not have a great technique and would often get out edging the ball to the slips or planting his foot right in front of the stumps and getting out LBW to a loose delivery. But what made me like him is the fact that this crazy man would just see the ball and smash the ball to all corners of the ground. I used to imitate his sniffing style while playing street cricket as a kid.

A great memory of this man is from the match India played against Pakistan in the 1992 world cup. He opened the batting for India and faced 39 balls to score just 5 runs. I was waiting for him to erupt, but he seemed so out of touch. Facing the likes of Wasim Akram, Aaqib Javed and Imran Khan was never an easy joke. Indian posted a low score. However, he made up for his poor batting display in that match by putting the brakes on the Pakistani chase by pouncing on a low sharp catch to dismiss Aamer Sohail who was cruising at 62 runs of the bowling of my all time favorite cricketer- Sachin. That was the defining moment of that match and India defeated Pakistan in that match.

He does a lot of trash talk and he was a party animal of the yesteryears. One thing that made him stand apart was the manner in which he faced the West Indian fast bowlers.  There was one fiery fast bowler Pat Paterson (Patrick Patterson). He was the fastest of all the fast bowlers of that time. He bowled a full over of 150+ kmph bouncers to the Australians and literally made them wet their pants in the famous WI VS Aus 5th test in 1991.

If facing the likes of Joel Garner, Malcolm Marshall, Andy Roberts, Holding, Curtly Ambrose and Courtney Walsh without a Helmet was no easy joke; this crazy Indian opener must have been really a lunatic to go without a helmet to face the fiery Patrick Patterson. But he did that too. 

People often laud Viv Richards for his bravery for not wearing a helmet throughout his career. But I like this Indian lunatic because he was the one who made me to follow and fall in love with the game of cricket. If you have not figured out who I am talking about, check this six by the craziest Indian opener of all time Krish Srikanth as he thunderbolts a Patt Patterson ball out of the park. Tony Greig's commentary adds flavor to the video.


Do not get offended because I called him a crazy lunatic. I am one too.

- Chronicwriter

934. Manakudi Beach

Manakudi beach is situated 10 kilometres from Kanyakumari. I love this beach for many reasons. Look at the picture below. The old bridge was ravaged by the deadly tsunami in 2004. A new bridge was constructed after that. You can see both these bridges in the below picture.


The newly constructed bridge is constructed over the manakudi lake. Every time I visit my hometown, I make it a point to visit this place for the fishes, safe clean water to swim and the beautiful beach, because Kanyakumari is usually polluted and crowded. Last year, when my sister came to India, I took them to this beach.


Anya, Jeremy and Jolena are all set to hit the beach. The beach hats are out too.


Finally, we are at the beach. Even when my mom insisted on using the DSLR(in her hand), I still prefer to click pictures with my phone. The Americans are wearing sunglasses because namma ooru sun is so hot it seems. You can see the bridge and the fishing boats behind us.


The kids are ready to hit the beach. The sea behind us is the Arabian Sea. We are sitting on a small patch of land between the sea and the backwaters.


Anya is ready to swim. She has more muscles than me. Jeremy and Jolena are ready to splash too. The backwaters are just one foot deep and you can walk at least 50 meters inside. This place is safe for even little kids to play.



Anya in her dhyaanam mode. Moments before she attained Zen nilai. Nothing like the gentle water ripples kissing your feet.


Finally, we settled down for a catamaran. Fishermen had just returned from a catch. We got some good fish.



If you visit Kanyakumari, do not forget to visit this place.

-Chronicwriter