Mar 22, 2018

950. The Paati near my school


My diary: Flashback to 1995

I don't know her name. I don't even know her story. But all my classmates used to have a special bond with her. We used to call her Paatti (Tamil for granny). 

She was so poor and she would sit outside my school gate. All she would have is a plastic sheet spread in front of her. Some mangoes, gooseberries and jamun would be kept in that plastic sheet.

During lunch time (12:30 pm to 1:15 pm) we would rush out our classrooms and go near the gate and stretch our hands through the gate. For 50 paisa, she would give a few pieces of mango sprinkled with chilly powder, a few gooseberries and some jamun to each one of us. 

Some times when we did not have money, she would still give a piece of mango to us. She would have probably made a profit of Rs 10/- everyday. What made us respect her is the fact that at her age, she still chose to make a living through hard work.

She knew all my classmates by our names. During PT period, when the ball goes out of the compound wall, she would pick the ball from the road and throw it back inside. I have never seen her getting angry at all.

" Makkaley" ( Dear)

That's how she used to call us all. When I was in class 10, the school management thought that she was a menace to the school because some parents had complained that their children were getting sick because of eating the unhygienic fruits from Paati.

At first the headmaster, warned us to not buy anything from her. But when we did not listen to his warning, the management decided to chase her away. I never saw her again.

In the year 2010, when I was in Singapore, I met a guy called Thirunavukarasu. He was also from my hometown. During one of our conversations, he opened up about how his folks struggled hard to educate him. He was particularly grateful for his late granny. 

When he told that she used to sell some fruits near my school, I had a strong doubt that it could be her. And when I asked him if she used to sell mangoes, gooseberries and jamuns, he said "Yes". My eyes had already welled up. I did not ask her name. 

-Chronicwriter

Mar 19, 2018

949. Everyone deserves a second chance



How would a person feel if his wife cheats him with his good friend? It would be a very bad experience indeed. Dinesh's wife cheated on him and to make things worse, divorced him and married his good friend Murali. Both these guys are cricketers for team India. 

With a blow in his personal life, his professional career also was in tatters. He made his cricketing debut in the early 2000s and when he was seen as the next wicketkeeper for India, Dhoni entered the cricketing scene with his thundering batting prowess and stole his position. Dinesh was sidelined for almost 14 years. 

When India was battling against Bangladesh in the finals of the Nidahas Trophy, all hopes were lost. Dinesh was already furious because Vijay Shankar was sent up the order by Rohit Sharma. When 34 runs were required by India in 12 balls, no one thought that we would win. But Dinesh Karthik made it possible for us.


Indian parents would be like " Hey what are those 0.1 and 2? Even Sharmaji's son has scored three  double hundreds.

He got a second chance in his personal life and he has married the beautiful and talented Dipika Pallikal. When he got a second chance in his professional career, he grabbed it with both hands, making the entire nation to become his fans.

If you are thinking why I had to write about his personal life in this blog, you should know that he would have gone through a great emotional trauma and it is not easy to come out of it. But he did.
 He is definitely the wicketkeeper-batsman we need. But he is not the cricketer we deserve.

Read this blog I wrote about Dipika Pallikal ten years ago. [link]

BTW, Do I look like Dinesh Karthik? 



- Chronicwriter

Mar 16, 2018

948. A fresh start


We might have seen certain scenes from movies and laughed out loud. We would remember those scenes for the comedy and the emotion it triggered in us while watching it. Some of these scenes have more to offer. They can be applied in our life too and it comes handy in taking vital decisions in life.

One such scene is the "Parotta eating scene" from the movie  "Vennila Kabaddi Kuzhu". This one comedy scene made actor Soori an overnight success. He got prominent comical roles which were left void by the absence of the Vaigai storm.

Coming back to the comedy scene, Soori and his friends would visit a hotel to eat Parotta. The owner of the hotel had a weird marketing technique to boost his sales. He challenged his customers to eat 50 parottas with a unique offer. The offer was that he would give them Rs 100 if one of them ate 50 parottas. At the same time, if they feel to eat 5- parottas, they have to give him Rs 100 and also pay the bill for the number of parottas they ate. Soori would take the challenge and eat like a crazy elephant. Just when he crosses 40 parottas, the owner of the hotel will play many cheap tricks by making bigger parottas and purposefully miscounting the number of parottas. When Soori finally claims that he had eaten 50 parottas, the hotel owner would argue with him saying that he had eaten only 42 parottas and he had to still eat 8 more parottas. This is when the audience would get angry at the hotel owner and when all eyes would be on Soori to see how he handles such a situation, he would blurt out the unthinkable dialogue " Remove all the lines. I will start eating again from the beginning". We all would have laughed out loud seeing this scene.

This scene teaches us a great lesson not to get bogged down by anything in life. It also teaches us to start afresh at any given point in time.

I remember a man who lost his job, his wife became ill and he had to stay at home to take care of his two children. Taking care of the family in such a situation became almost impossible for him. I have sat with him and he would cry. After a few months, he decided to start from scratch. He started to use the internet to acquire projects from other countries and he started to do Back office work for them. Now after three years, he has his own company and more than 500 people work in his office. He did not give permission to reveal his name.

I would like to quote the example of a cousin of mine. This guy moved to Chennai after a disaster almost struck his entire family. They had to move back to Chennai and the whole family had to make a fresh start. This cousin of mine got married at this juncture and he had a job that was paying a meager salary at that time. He got back to the basics, worked on his strengths and now he has a business model that not only pays him well but also helps many families.

I have to talk about my uncle here. With just Rs 100 in his pocket in the year 2003, he did not have any job in his hand. He already had a baby. And life was difficult for him. By God's grace and sheer hard work, he has risen up the ladder and he is now one of the best event managers in the country for corporate entertainment.

How can I not write about my dear friend Bragadeesh Prasanna? I have already written about him on my blog [link]. He lost almost everything in his life, his job, people close to him. Now he is a published author, a businessman and a successful entrepreneur. 

One trait that is common to all these four people I personally know is the fact that they never shied away from starting again from scratch. They did not sit and cry and think that it is the end of the road for them. They did not take foolish decisions in life. They faced life head on and moved forward with grit and determination.

The next time you watch this comedy scene, do not just treat this as a comedy scene. Try to understand the life lesson it teaches. Have a fresh start.

-Chronicwriter

Mar 13, 2018

947. Couch potatoes


I have a habit of lying on the couch to watch TV. My doctor saw my tummy and said that the sudden increase in my waist size is because I lie down on the couch for long periods of time. 

The couch in this picture is from my father's house. That couch is as old as me and it has a long history. Back then we could treasure hunt under the cushions. Biscuits, hair clips, coins, sketch pens, and even love letters have been found underneath. The love letter was written by my me for my crush in school.

All these years, I had the couch for myself. I did not have anyone to fight for the couch. But nowadays, my daughter Anya fights for the couch too. 

As soon as I switch on the TV, my daughter and I would make a sprint to occupy the couch. I would always win the race and she would start crying. Women and tears go hand in hand. (Brickbats are not welcome from the feminazis). The whole family will support Anya and I would be asked to vacate the couch for her.

I would then plead with her if she can share some space with her. She would have mercy and give me space on one condition - that I would buy her chocolates. We would then share one pillow and watch the TV together. We have two couch potatoes in my house now.

-Chronicwriter

Mar 1, 2018

946. Kaala Teaser Leaked



My friend told me that Kaala movie teaser was out on Youtube even among speculations that the teaser release was postponed because of Kanchi Sankaracharya's death. I wanted to immediately check out and de-code what that movie has in store for the world. But instead of  "Kaala", I ended up typing in the word "Kala" and google gave me hundreds of videos and images of Kala master.


Now I have seen everything. I don't want to see that teaser anymore. I am scarred for life. 

-Chronicwriter