Archive | September, 2010

You Bring Out the Parsi in Me

27 Sep

Another identity, another take on Sandra Cisneros’ You Bring Out the Mexican in Me.


You bring out the Parsi in me.

The choy-foodna-ni-choy and

dhandar patio in me.

The smell of lobaan, eau-de-cologne

and all things from the sea in me.


You’re the one who

draws out my Gujarati, the

dhus-pus bolni and O mora khodae in me.

The tori sasoo kanda khai and

insistence on preservation in me.

Cling to the garas,

dry-clean those kors,

lovingly wipe Granny’s pearls in me.


You bring out the Parsi in me.

The Sunday kavaabs and aapro Zubin

in me.

The Bachi Karkaria and Sam Bahadur in me.


scarves and frocks and

gout no dukhavo,

the refugee from Iran in me.


Take me to Udwada,

Where food and worship blend.

The doodh-na-puff and din no kalmo and

orgasm-worthy kharia in me.

The nasal chants of the dastoorjis in me,

The love of antiques, heritage anything and spiffy vintage cars in me.

And half a dozen boomlas for breakfast,

jara limboo aapjo ji.


Only you, only yours.

Love me the way lagan-nu-bhonu does,

all four glorious courses of sit-down perfection,

post fox-trots and cha-chas with Dinsa and Dorab.

Caress me like the kusti skims my waist,

the sadra white from Ala bleach

and an obsessive mother’s scrubbing.


You bring out the Parsi in me.

The saaf-safai and chappal pehro in me.


love of pegs and bawdy jokes

and koyla nataks on Navroze in me.

Whip out your fingers

Play tuj-khalloo-peejun-savak

Speak esmem-tesmem to me

Marere mua, what will the ghatas know?

Aapri rani su sojji majheni!


You bring out the Parsi in me.

The BPP politics, orthodox-reformist wars, the

silently dying breed in me.

The visits to Doongerwadi get frequenter.

A community is passing on.

The parjaats are eyeing our land.

Aapri colonies, aapri ketli jameen,

pun aapra Hindoos are always docile in me.


Run to Sai Baba

and Mahim Church

and whoever listens to the

South Bombay bred-missionary schooled-elocution-trained-haw, you don’t read Chaucer-English accent

in me.

Life membership at the NCPA is mandatory.

They give you a free form with your birth certificate at

The Parsee General.


You bring out the Parsi in me.

The pale skin, green-veined thighs and khar-khar laughter in me.

The majha masti, the salaamati, the

khushali na jashan in me.

(Only if malido follows).


Love me, hold me, say

I’m special.

Call your friendly neighborhood Parsi now.

Soon to be extinct but

never down-and-out,

grab your slice of history

before she walks off

for another helping of



Jamva chalo ji!

Just a Couple

23 Sep

Aunt OJ: Gubby, how old are you?

The baby formerly known as Ghattu (beaming & pointing to the sides of his head): Two ears.

Happy 2nd and God bless, my most precious bundle of gurgles. I can’t imagine what I did with all my love before you came along to be squished, nuzzled and proprietorially smothered.

Like you promptly trot out on demand, “I laaau you!” You’re the happiest thing that will ever happen to Masi outside of her uterus.


20 Sep

Your ego shouldn’t be bigger than your bum.

(Whew. I’m safe.)

Fame & September

16 Sep

To borrow from the Peanuts, it was a dark and stormy night.  In the wee hours of September 16, 1983, a little girl woke up to find her mother gone. Strangely, so were the sheets. She peered over the edge of the bed to see the comforting, omnipresent and prone figure of her beloved Sharda, maid and minder since she was a mere three months. All the while, the rain clattered down, as if making up for her missing parents with its cacophony.

The little girl smiled. “I’m getting a brother,” she reminded herself, well-prepared parrot that she was. And snuggled back under the covers to dream of all the things she would do for the New Baby.

He arrived at 12.14 p.m. Red, hairy and monkey-like. (She would later learn that her mother had wept in horror at the sight of her ugly second-born.) She took a bunch of roses to the hospital. It was love at first sight. And she became the most willing mommy-in-training there ever was, naming him, rocking him and holding the edge of his soiled cloth diapers.

Don’t bother telling him this, though. He’ll only smirk. And turn back to the monitor and tune you out.

Happy birthday, you 6’1” punk. Remember you once relied on me to ring the doorbell.

Happiness is…

14 Sep

…talking to Ruskin Bond.

In this fortnight’s People (India) magazine.

Good people of the blog, my life’s journey is d.o.n.e.

:mrgreen: :mrgreen:  :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

:mrgreen: :mrgreen:  :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

:mrgreen: :mrgreen:  :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

Okay, so you get the drift.


:mrgreen: :mrgreen:  :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

:mrgreen: :mrgreen:  :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

:mrgreen: :mrgreen:  :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

And oh,

:mrgreen: :mrgreen:  :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

:mrgreen: :mrgreen:  :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

:mrgreen: :mrgreen:  :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:


All Rise

10 Sep

True spirituality involves not stealing another’s garlic bread.

~Me to the Boy over dinner last night.


What?! Are you going to disagree?? 😯


9 Sep

[Credits: OJ and her Canon PowerShot SX120 IS.]

[Click on picture to enlarge]

I’m quite keen on the Impressionists. That woman you saw floating two inches off the floor in rooms 43-47 of the National Gallery in early June this year? That was me.

So this picture taken at St. James’ Park in May particularly thrilled me. Doesn’t it look a teensy bit similar to Impression, Sunrise?

Doesn’t it, doesn’t it?

(This is where you humor me.)

You guys are the best! :mrgreen:


How, Susanna?*

4 Sep

“Huh..,” I try.

“Hu…” again.

My breath snags, catches on a syllable and I swallow quickly.

“Boyfriend” rolls off the tongue like wine on warm skin.

Smooth. Familiar. An old shoe.

“Fiance” trips off in a tutu, twirling for effect, batting its mascara-soaked lashes and smiling coyly in Francais.

But hu…



Meet my husband. Oh, my husband isn’t home. I’ll let my husband know you called.

(Whew.) That one that takes a 32-year tongue some practice.

Ladies and gentlemen, the reason they married girls off at 14, revealed.


[*Obscure reference to Ruskin Bond’s short story Susanna’s Seven Husbands]