Monday, May 11, 2009

Every neighbourhood has 1

We all know this one person who is totally eccentrically infuriating – sometimes avoidable, but sometimes not – like I walked in home to see Aunty G sitting there. Aunty G or Aunty Gravity, for the unique ability to make the world revolve around her.

“Did you hear – in that storm - a coconut tree fell on my neighbour’s house and smashed their roof.”
“At least, it wasn’t your house, Auntyji.”
“It was MY neighbour. I asked God of all the houses in this place, you could only find one next to me? It will be my house next? What have I done to deserve this?”

I search desperately for some topic where she won’t be the unwilling focus.
Elections ! – aha ! Surely she can’t be the centre of a nationwide phenomenon.
“They are having elections NOW ! Just when I am going to be in my daughter’s house in America that time… What timing ! They always have elections when I can’t vote!”
Subtle hints like telling her that there are greater forces, besides her, fall flat.
“Look, elections are a 5-year-thingie, Aunty, – and you should plan your trip accordingly.”
“What rubbish! My daughter is having a baby,” she lashes out. “And they too are so selfish. They couldn’t have planned that baby better ?– at some time when I was free to go.”
OK, so family planning, national planning and weather planning are definitely not to be undertaken without Aunty G’s prior permission.

She finally heaved herself up to leave, after complaining that the sweets I served were too sweet, with no concern for diabetics like her, and that we live on the 3rd floor, with blinding blindness towards knee pains of arthritic people like her.
“You really shouldn’t take the trouble to come over,” I say. “The steps, the distance… for someone like you.”
“What rubbish!” Aunty G retorts. “I never think of myself.”


  1. anyone out there got an aunty G or someone similar story?

  2. Hah:) U should just cook her egg curry the next time she visits...that will scare her off for good...go for it!

  3. on our left is a loner with a noisy dog who feeds pigeons on his terrace, who in turn feed our terrace with shit. on our right is a mega maadu family so huge that their 50 million kids spill over into our home. and in the front is a family who believes that the only purpose a car serves is opening all its doors in the night, get the whole family in, and play loud music, WHILE THE CAR IS STATIONARY. It's like a domestic discotheque on wheels, except the wheels never turn. in a nutshell, we don't watch TV for entertainment, we just go to the balcony.

  4. Well said. I know a chronic name-dropper. Once I made up a fictitious celebrity, and she went on to invent some time she had spent with him at a store.

  5. I know someone who is always a stressed out - that's YOU. And your kids can't be half that bad. Come ON. It makes for fun reading and I revisit your blog regularly, though I am sure it isn't all true, come on?

  6. unfortunately I have forgotten what neighbours are like (this is what happens when you live in an alien country). Back in India I can tell you so many stories.

    Come to think of it now I miss it...

    but I know your inspirations come from real people and incidents.. anyway it doesnot matter ... just dont ever introduce me to them thats all ha ha

    I love the stories on your children.. thing is that I have been a witness to most of it so I know how true your life is...

    But as I would say.. you are definitely not a stressed out person..but a person who is so fun filled and with all stories that people may actually think that they are horror stories .. least do they know the truth.. but the best part is how you actually love your life and those moments.. and would not have it otherwise..

    Oh on that note I wish I was your neighbour and this would be one hell of a noisy neighbour who I would only love more n more and would look forward to open door policy esp when it comes to coffee breaks.. and all children can be locked up in a room while we can put our legs up.. what the heck later we will regret having them in one room and then cleaning up the muck and the bruised souls

    but what the heck!!!! that asks for one more discussion over coffee so what say neighbour again lock them and have a coffee.. Cheers to You neighbour

  7. ira, one coffee coming up.
    Anon - read my blog profile -down to the last word - especially the last word ;-)
    slash - that's one set of howlers you got settled in with.

  8. Dont know about neighbours, but aren't most bosses like our Aunty G here?

    And I wouldn't mind one of those coffee's. Got a transcontinental one?

    And Anon - the boys are the best in the whole wide world & their mum the coolest! You may ruffle a few feathers by upsetting their fan club

  9. There's Aunty G, who thinks the world revolves around her, and there are those the world really does revolve around, and they don't know it.

    Take The Joneses. They are all around us. And they are probably smug in the knowledge that they are the ones setting the bar. I have always been curious to know what it feels like to be a Jones. So, mustering up the courage, I decided to ask my friend, David Jones.

    We were in his yard, and he was trying to fix a pedal on his bicycle. I stood next to him, watching him. His level of concentration was so high his tongue stuck out.

    'So what is it like, being a Jones?', I asked without preamble.

    'If you mean the missus, I can tell you it isn't easy.', he replied.

    Now, I hadn't budgeted for this reply. 'You mean, people compete on wives too?'

    'Nope', he replied, 'They compete on girlfriends. Wives tend to look the same. What's with the competing?'

    'You're a Jones. You tell me.'

    'I can't help being a Jones. I was born one. My dad was one. His dad was one. Darn!', he exclaimed, as the spanner slipped and broke a spoke.

    'Lets ask the question differently', I said, using my intelligent-but-patient voice, 'Who do you keep up with?'

    'What do you mean?'

    'I mean who do you keep up with?'

    'What do you mean?'

    'I mean, who do you keep up with?'

    'What do you mean?'

    'I mean, who do you keep up with?'

    'What do you mean?'. He can be so thick sometimes.

    'I mean, who do you keep up with?', I repeated with a tone of finality and I-hope-you-get-it-this-time-ness.

    'What do you mean, dammit?'. Thick I can handle, but there's no call for that kind of language!

    'I mean, you guys are the Joneses!'

    'I know who we are.'


    'Well, what?'

    'Well, spill it out!'

    'Spill what out?'

    'Who do you keep up with?'. His concentration is failing. I can tell because his tongue isn't sticking out anymore.

    'You know, you're very annoying. Half the time, I haven't a clue what you're talking about!'

    'You're American', I said.

    'What's that got to do with the price of eggs?'

    'See?', I exclaimed, 'You're American!'

    'So, whoopie-ding. I am American.'

    'So you don't understand me. I speak English and you speak American.'

    'So shoot me.' He was getting upset. He was wrestling with a nut now, and he had beads of sweat on his brow.

    'That's an American approach.'

    'Where are you going with this?'

    'I am right here. Not going anywhere.'

    'Don't you have somewhere you gotta be?'

    'Yes', I replied.

    'So go there.', he says.

    'I am there.'

    'Hang on. Where did this start?'

    'How do you choose a dishwasher?' I asked, wanting to cut the small talk and get to the heart of the matter.

    'Why would I want to choose a dishwasher?', he yells. I worry for him sometimes, when the blood vessels in his neck stick out.

    'You have to', I reply, keeping a calm voice, 'You're the Joneses.'

    'F*** off!'

    'I'd wait for the Joneses to do that first', I replied, because I do believe in keeping up with the Joneses.

    At this point, the screwdriver slipped and lodged itself an inch deep in the webbing between his left thumb and index finger.

    'F***! F***! F***! F***! F***! '

    'Maybe we should talk about this later', I said, 'You sound distressed.', trying to be polite about the filth that was pouring out of his mouth.

    'F*** you!'

    'See you later', I said, making my escape just in time to avoid being in the flight path of a bloodied screwdriver.

    I don't know what it is about the Joneses that everyone wants to keep up with. I, for one, couldn't be bothered. They're violent boors, in my opinion, with a filthy mouth to boot. I've put my evidence on the table. You decide.

  10. Dear Anon,
    Don't worry. I agree with you. She does write well. And humor writing needs to be far-fetched, which is the allegation once thrown to Dave Barry, who responded by adding the phrase "I am not making this up" now, which of course is to tell you that he is.
    Anyhow,this is to tell you about my Aunty G, who is this excessively sweet modest woman. When you go to her house, and compliment her, she says "Oh, this is nothing at all." And when you compliment her on her 5 cuorse meal, she says "Oh, this is nothing. It took me only 10 minutes to prepare."
    If you don't realise that modesty is so irritating, you must meet her.

  11. see, this is why i stopped coming over :)

  12. lol, okie, so AoS is funny! :)

    I cannot fault this one. :P

  13. I have an Aunty G as well. Poor lady lives alone as her kids have flown the nest. I do sometimes go over & ask her how she's doing out of pity for her plight (old age, arthritis, etc) but pity is what I feel for myself by the time she is finished!!

    God forbid if you ever get accosted by her on the way to putting your bins out - the woman does not stop talking & she never runs out of stories!!