It was a Saturday. College got over by ten in the morning. Having nothing much to do, I took a bus and went to Brigade Road. Air was cool; and the girls pretty. A perfect weather on a perfect day. But then I don’t like perfection, you see. So it was quite an ordinary day for me. There is something evil about perfection: it’s ugly, it’s mediocre, it’s brutal. Just imagine. If everything in this world was perfect, there would be nothing to complain. If there was nothing to complain, many people would be jobless; they would be dead from the inside. Thank heavens, not everything is perfect. It was the same with the weather that day: it was bloody perfect. Hence I was restive and cranky. I walked down the road, trying to find something interesting to write about. Well, I did. That’s why you are reading this.
It was noon. As I had already got bored with Brigade Road, I decided to leave the place and go somewhere else. And Garuda Mall happened to be ‘somewhere else.’ I bought a Hot Chocolate Fudge from an ice-cream shop, tentatively named American Ice-Cream Parlour, and started walking towards my destination. As I walked on I ruminated on the ice-cream shop. Why the name American Ice-Cream Parlour? Why not Indian? Why not Bangalore? Why not Brigade? Do people get attracted to everything that’s related to America? Maybe faarin names make a difference. It’s hypocrisy, don’t you think? In the midst of these faarin influenced, superfluous shops that resonate false prestige, Indian Coffee Bar on M.G. Road stood apart. I liked that place. But it’s not there anymore. Some big-shot crack-head compelled them to close it down.
‘That’s not the point,’ said Jyothi.
I am not a tall guy. I stand at five foot two. I don’t have a complex about it. But I really feel sorry for myself whenever I travel in Bangalore city buses: whenever a tall guy stands in front of me, hanging by the ceiling bar, my nose gets smothered in his armpit. Know what I mean? But today was different. The bus was not as crowded as it should be during this time everyday. All seats were occupied, but there was enough room to stand without rubbing my body against others’ and smelling their odour. It was a privilege.