goals for the type Z


what if you aren’t type A?

if you arent working from 8.15 am to 7.45 pm. or from 7.46 p.m. to 3 a.m. or aren’t an artist, or an artiste, or a teacher or a homemaker, or an MBA, or almost famous, or famous.

who are you in this world… ?

if you dont have the glint in your eye. 

drifters have no place. i today realize that i live in india — where it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place, just like the Red Queen told Alice.

 but this is my ordinary life. i stalk oprahdotcom. i do a dainty flower arrangement. i lift toddlers and hug them. i meditate for an hour. i hang clothes. i fast. i smile. i read. i water plants. i climb stairs. i smell the rose so closely that the thorn poked me. i segregate garbage. i yell at firstborn. i drink organic milk. i draw kolams. i pick frangipanis from the roadside. i talk to my mil for an hour. i eat coriander chutney. i sit in padmasana and i dont move a hair. i blog. i dont blog.  i dawdle. i procrastinate. i hurry. i worry. i keep a tidy home. i make coffee for the watchman.  i laze. i nap. i dont keep a tidy home. i change sheets. i bathe at noon. i listen to a kutcheri. 

 you could call me a human being as opposed to a human doing.  but how do i explain it in chennai-terms 

so what is my mission statement to someone who’s running twice as fast i can.

or what is my vision statement — oh. and this rant is not about the MMMIm -coz he’s only type A about himself .

what is my goal.  what do i tell them type As — and  chennAi is only type A. i need to dangle a believable, plausiable realistic tangible [ i hate these words] goal.

help me. someone. everyone.



33 responses »

  1. “call me a human being as opposed to a human doing”.
    MIM. Pure genius. You certainly ain’t no Type Zzzz. Why, I couldn’t pick a single letter to describe you. You are a whole sonnet, or if you prefer, a mesmerizing raagam.

    “who are you in this world… ? what is my goal.”
    Your goal is to not choke on the existential angst coffee while Type A’s toss such questions at you. To give them perverse satisfaction when they look below on their climb up the ladder. To watch them choke on an idli while you tell them — “Honestly, I don’t give a fuck. And since you’re showing such keen interest in my personal affairs, let me tell you, that onion sambhar I had for lunch has left me feeling rather gassy and my last period was on the 14th. You’re welcome”.

    • hey that was totally totally sweet np.
      v. largely undeserved, but immensely kind.
      thank you and i love it when i get served kind. love love love it.

      i now am wondering type z is actually a mask for type d-uh; and that’s what annoying the chennaites

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  3. i answer such queries in person wonly. usually charge for a lot too but for you, all free. can do with some of the watchman coffee though.

    p.s.: maybe you could check with kennyportpreeti. she = chennAAAi.

    • chox. kennyp runs marathons and works at type a mecca.
      and plays basket ball
      and drinks beer
      and blogs
      and solves cw puzzles
      and cooks
      and has never really taken to heart REAL words like – lazy, dawdle or excessive hair oil.

      nope. both of you are my living terrors

      • NOT FAIR. I love hair oil (its another matter that it doesn’t love me back). But I do admit that I am the opposite of lazy. And people don’t understand me either, so screw them. I loved this post.

  4. You talk to your MIL for an hr?
    Ok, I am going to make a totally biased statement, considering I know zilch about your MIL….
    Babe, you have arrived! You have achieved what the wanna-be achievers have written down in their ‘to achieve’ list.
    For you next stop, eternal bliss. Enjoy it.

    • ahem. i have my parents and parents-in-law staying with us for the next two months at my place. totally recommend it – only danger is they are all likely to gang up on you and thoroughly enjoy it.

    • utbt, it’s because she’s REALLY warm and kind, daughters-in-law no bar.

      she has a keen sense of fun. cooks. makes kickass filter kaapi and knows how many granules of sugar you need without you ever saying. minds grandkids. never blase. never bored. and her motto in life = eat. pray. love.

      oh. and did i ever mention hour-long conversations i have had with the mmmmim, on say, a book… nope.
      that’s when i’ll arrive.

  5. who is mmmmim?

    ps: you should totally meet my mom. calls us fools for not doing any of the smile, smell roses stuff. i agree, when im not running around being (sob) type A.

  6. When Type A’s ask stupid questions, say “I’m one of a kind, baby… God made me and broke the mold unlike you cookie cutter creations. I will forever be beyond your understanding.” And the running but staying at the same place happens whether you are in Sulamangalam or in Manhattan. Life and its struggles stay the same. Pretensions, though, are directly proportional to the (p)big headedness of the person you’re talking to.

  7. Invent and fantasy life and dish it out to the Type As. Wonly ensure you never run into them again cuz you’d have to keep all em’ details in your head and seriously who has time to do that when there are roses to smell and dawdling to do:-)

    BTW, urgent request from an ardent admirer of your writing and humor. Am hitting Chennai after years(say 15 +) with my mother who lived there ages ago for a short while when she was an air hostess with Air India and she hasn’t visited in like 25 years. She’s very keen on attending a classical vocal concert. Are there any still on during the week of Feb 27th to March 7th. D’you know where I could find info. online or call on arrival to ask? I see from your blog you have an avid interest in Carnatic music. My mum is a hindustani vocal artist who performed extensively until a few years ago and also takes a keen interest in Carnatic vocal. Would be v, v grateful if you could provide info.

    • ‘i have to stop talking to you because i have to go and dawdle’ doesnt sound good when i tell it to the type a’s —

      may be i should patent this phrase for sufferers like me to use in future….

      oh i am sure there’s a concert every single day in chennai — the hindu has a column where it lists performances of the day… so you just pick up the paper, check the ‘today’s engagements’ section and hop on to an auto and mention the sabha closest to you — before you know it the musician is already singing nattai.

      every friday the ALL INDIA RADIO hosts an ‘all are welcome’ concert at 5.30 pm at their auditorium which is near the marina beach in the AIR premises. my mum says these kutcheris are not crowded and the concert is usually by a top vidwan — this last week the concert was by smt aruna sairam …

      also if you just switch on the radio — there’s a kutcheri at 8.45 a.m., another at 5 p.m. and another at 5 a.m. and another at 9 p.m.

      your mum will be happy to be here… chennai is still deeply musical. welcome back.

  8. Haven’t read such a thought provoking post in the longest time. Never change. And I know you hate PDA, but I’m going to online hug you anyway. *wait 10 seconds* k. Now you may awkwardly disengage.

    • but you do know that your words swirl in my pensieve and touch me even when i am offline.

      cant disengage after awingandaprayer – hooked on you forlife

  9. You know, I ALWAYS tell the child ‘Stop dawdling, child’ Now I know that I am being completely unfair. Dawdling is awesome no? If you do it then it must be…

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