Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Dress me up

It was just a few weeks ago, I decided to have my occasion based clothes shopping expedition. Not that I’m Jewish or sorts, but the whole ordeal of buying clothes sometimes seems like a daunting task. The prime cause being I’m a little fussy when it comes to colours, patterns or styles. Not that I want to be a brat, but well- let’s just say I won’t be giving a mannequin a run for it buck. Besides, the places I work won’t allow me a Red T-shirt on any day.

Now walking into a store to buy clothes is not as easy as it may seem. Unless you are damn sure of what you want, you are entering a world of ciaos. You want to buy everything- just about everything looks appealing; except for the shirts with monster designs. Brands, styles, fittings are all seemingly similar, but still are to be taken as different. Add to it the confusion the sales guys contribute with half knowledge. I mean there was one sales guy who was debating if gabardine was a type of cloth or trouser style.

I shall confess that I have an army of blue shirts. That’s natural. It’s as logical as to why every girl has played with pink dolls. Also that’s one colour that goes well with trousers Navy, Black, Grey, Khakis or Brown. So I was determined to look beyond with something that would still make me feel good and knew it will take some kind of serious hunting.

One of the ironies in shopping for clothes is that whatever you find to your taste never fits you. Ask for a fresh piece in something and there never is one. Trial pieces never match up to the packed ones. So when I ultimately landed with a shirt with some fine non-blue pin stripes and not in my size, the salesman promptly said, “I’ll check it up in the back”.

Now why does this happen- 4 shirts of size 38 and not one in 44 on the rack? I mean do they have something called as the ‘Reserve store’, with stock in the back. Sadly the back yielded nothing and the hunt continued and I finally picked 3 shirts to add to the wardrobe. The selection was simple, I only ensure it made me look confident to face myself in the mirror.

The next mission was trousers; which got in a new element called matching. I really don’t like this at times. I mean I seriously feel this is going to disappear someday, life comes a full circle and becomes simple- we all shall wear a common uniform across the world. I’m not joking- They do so in Star Trek or Wall-E; so that’s definitely the future. Unlike shirts (unless u buying Arrow for its marking on the cuffs), trousers also have a brand name that shows up on the hips and plays an important role.

Every combination I tried with various brands got only one response- “Sir, this one is you”. I mean you don’t even tip the sales guys, but they seem to have been trained to say stuff. I gave up after 4 combinations and just stuck to basics of Navy blue in a brand I’m comfortable carrying off and walked away.

All those two hours in a shop ensured was I can stay at peace for the next 4 months; or until something else comes up that requires me in new clothes.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


This won’t be the first occasion I’m talking about expected behavior patterns. I have been vocal about how people can come up with almost no efforts and call it their best and place failures against it. This one comes on the background of my understanding on of a certain market- this time around; it is about the holy matrimony and how this is functioning.

Now I have been observing behaviour of people for close to a year now; six months of which I can say in complete seriousness from my side. Rightfully so, this event commands the maximum involvement from prospects and their parents alike. This is one buy where compromise is not on the cards. Everything has to be as per expectation- perfection in every possible quarter.

I have nothing against the intricate level of detailing that people like to go through… even exploring my family descends- but what is amazing and disturbing is a very different point.

I guess there is no doubt you need to check for compatibility. This can be clinical (blood groups) or social behavior; but also what is important is how well you can communicate between and understand each other. What in fact seems to be the dependence is on things like horoscopes – which people candidly accept they know nothing of in detail.

My biggest problem is how can an entity that is beyond understanding of normal people and usually deduced by a 3rd party decide my fate? Of a million perceivable and visible parameters, how does this factor determine the life for people?

Recently I got one revert saying ‘our rashis are mrityu shadashtak’- I know, the words are a killer in itself. Considering my ignorance and lack of understanding of the topic, I tried to enlighten myself by “Guru Google”. I found it turned out that it simply meant the possibility of misunderstanding was high. Strangely this is an aspect that can be easily worked around with having good faith and trust in a relation.

But what makes me really upset is the fact that horoscopes are used as a crutch to safe guard against any possibly failure in a relationship. Even if everything else is in shape, horoscopes must match. If its not, sorry- its time to move on.

Another element is dependence on parent to take a call. Now even with a very transparent relation with my parents, I can still say I am an unknown to my parents in many ways. They never have seen me at work, or my temperament under pressure. They only know few of my friends and my unsupervised behavior staying alone in Pune (though they know much of it). But taking all this into consideration, they have cut me free to take calls, decide on whom I want or would like to meet and appreciate my decisions.

Now for people who have been much closer, it’s a strange thing to see the level of dependence on parents to take calls. “Do u feel we can go ahead and meet…”- “I need to ask Mom if I can….” (Wow, so how often and where all is my life likely to be subject to permissions from mother superior?)

I believe the reason is ownership. I take my decisions- so I’m responsible and have to own up to my acts. For others, I’m coming to believe that parents and horoscopes are like a safety net to act as the scrape goat and saviors in any eventuality.

How can you call yourself independent and free thinking individual if your actions and the ownership for them is missing?

I guess over protection at home and work is now showing up. Wards was parents or bosses to cover up- who in turn are looking at horoscopes or company policy to save their skin.