The Orgy of the Mannequins
This is a piece of fiction. The title of this post came to mind mind first when I was window-watching some mannequins in front of a store. With the title in hand, I worked out a story. The story can continue on after this or can end here itself with this post, leaving the rest to suspense. I hope you do enjoy the story. Do leave your comments and let me know how it is. Cheers!
That One Girl I Never Saw Again
I met Priyanka way back in 2003 on a flight back to my hometown from Muscat. A sassy eighteen something with specs which complimented her oval face, wavy black hair let loose, classy blue sweater and one of the prettiest smiles I have ever seen on a girl. She sat there with a book in her hand but was lost in thoughts. She was my co-passenger.
High Heels: How the hell is she walking in that thing?
An experiment on High Heels. Trying to find an explanation to the question that guys have been wondering for ages – ‘How the hell is she walking in that thing?'
Of Airplane Toilets and Flying Shits
Airplane toilets – always a mystery but quite an amusing thing. Yes, you read it right. In this blog, we are going to venture into the dark secrets of airplane lavatories.
The Gods, The Laymen and then the Human-Gods Part II
Alright. I am going to talk about the Gods and touch the topic of religion with this blog. So if you are really weak-hearted or a devotee of a self-proclaimed religious leader or a Human-God, then I would advise you to skip this. If you would like to ease into the topic, read the first part.
The Gods, The Laymen and then the Human-Gods
Alright. I am going to talk about the Gods and touch the topic of religion with this blog. So if you are really weak-hearted or a devotee of a self-proclaimed religious leader or a Human-God, then I would advise you to skip this.
The Tale of Indian "Wood"-Peckers
A take on Hollywood and their Indian derivatives or the Self-Proclaimed "Wood"-Peckers. Sneak a peek!
I Hate You, Lotus Notes
Why did IBM come up with Lotus Notes that frustrates the users who use it? Why do we all Hate Lotus Notes? Share the same feeling? Go ahead, shout it out!
The Singapore Hash Run Experience
Do I run? NO! You think I am crazy to lift my lazy bum off the chair and do something that involves physical exertion, actually a lot of it? NO, Damn it! But if beer is involved, I'ld crawl if I didn't have legs.
My Life as an Actor
Acting is an art. You are either born with the talent or you develop it. But whatever the case maybe you still keep perfecting it with each performance.
Tuesday, October 02, 2012
Thursday, June 28, 2012
DISCLAIMER: This is a piece of fiction. The title of this post came to mind mind first when I was window-watching some mannequins in front of a store. With the title in hand, I worked out a story. The story can continue on after this or can end here itself with this post, leaving the rest to suspense. I hope you do enjoy the story. Do leave your comments and let me know how it is. Cheers!
Whenever I walk past Uncle Sam’s tailoring shop along the Upper Cross Street in Chinatown, I would always stop for a moment to look inside his shop through the glass windows. Uncle Sam would be busy working behind his tailoring machine. He would lift his head up for a moment, look in my direction, give me a broad smile and a nod, and then return back to his work. He must have realized within a few days, even without looking at the old grandpa clock hanging by the wall, that by then, it was already seven in the evening. He knew me as the guy who would drop by his shop everyday evening and look through the glass windows for some time; he knew that I always stopped by to look at his mannequins and I kind of had an idea that he knew about it because he would return back to his work quickly after the smile and the nod, head and hands down, immersed completely into each and every punch the machine needle made on the cloth, letting me watch his mannequins.
"Oh, it's a long story kid. It's a long story."
Uncle Sam patted on my shoulders and went back behind his table to do his work. I stood there, still in disbelief, wondering is this all were a dream.
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Wednesday, June 06, 2012
Thursday, January 26, 2012
So, few weeks back, I was walking around the malls in the IT fare in Singapore looking for a camera to buy. And suddenly out of nowhere, appears this beautiful girl, dressed as a sales woman and she comes over to me with a smile. I was mesmerized by the way her lips curved that I stood staring at her, completely oblivious to what she was telling me. I was mostly unaware and fragile to an extend that after fifteen minutes of what I remember was just plain talk from her side and just plain appreciation of beauty from mine, I was standing there with a coupon for hair treatment at one of the outlets of Yun Nam Hair Care Centre. But the most impressive thing was that even though I had no idea of what was going on, I landed up with a pretty good deal; a one time scan and treatment which would normally cost $300 was there in my hand for just $8.
I was at first skeptical of whether I should have gone for the hair treatment or passed it on to one of my female friends; but then, decided to give it a try for three reasons. One - I would have something to blog about; two - I have never had a hair treatment before and hence wanted to experience what it felt like and three – I would get to see the whole thing from a woman’s point of view and why they are into it so much.
So when the woman from the Care centre called me on Wednesday, I asked her to fix the appointment the coming Sunday, at 18:00. And on Sunday, I was all dressed up by 5PM, walking around trying to decide if I should go for it or not. Given the male genes in me, this was a too-much-girly thing to do; I mean, I can't tell my friends,"Can't come for the beer session dude, got a hair appointment". But on the other hand, given the Indian mentality, this was a low priced coupon and I should make use of everything that the Care Centre offered me. And finally, the Indian mentality took the precedence over the male genes and by 6, I was at the Yun Nam outlet for Hair centre waiting for my appointment with the Hair consultant and the only thing I was concerned about was that there was not even a single guy waiting.
I was ushered into a small room containing a table with chairs on opposite sides and a computer and was asked to wait for a while after the lady at the reception took down my details and checked my Employment Pass for identification. The receptionist placed a tray with a cup of hot water, cracker biscuits and napkin. There was a surveillance camera on the ceiling and I looked at it and said a ‘Hi’ to whoever was watching me or whoever will after it was taped. And in two minutes a lady walked in, introduced herself as Kelly and took the seat opposite to me, behind the table.
She was in her mid-30s, as was what I could gather from her looks. She took out a form from her file and laid it on the table and started asking me questions while filling it at the same time.
Kelly: How do I address you, Mr Vijayakumar?
Me: You can call me Vijith.
Kelly: Ok Vijith. I will need to ask you a few questions to fill this form before taking the scan.
Me: Fine by me.
Kelly: So, have you had any chemotherapy in the past?
Kelly: And STDs?
Me [surprised and a bit embarrassed]: What?! No.
Kelly: Have you had any hair transplant in the past?
Kelly: Have you ever colored your hair?
Kelly: Do you wash you hair everyday Vijith?
Me: I do. Yes, I do.
Kelly: Do you have dandruff problem?
Me: I have never noticed dandruff on my hair. So I am guessing, no.
Kelly [in a tone of challenge than a statement]: We will see about that. What shampoo do you use?
Me: I use L’Oreal, for Normal Hair.
Kelly: And do you change your brand frequently?
Me: Depends on the model.
Kelly: I am sorry?
Me: I mean, sometimes. I used Dove before this; whichever I can get my hands on, precisely.
Kelly: Have you attended any hair treatments like this before?
Me: No, I am a virgin at this.
Kelly: Ok, so we have filled up the form. Now, you are entitled for a hair scan and a treatment with the coupon you have purchased. But before we start the scan, let me tell you something about hair treatments and what we do here at Yun Nam hair care.
She took out a file and turned the page over to a picture which I believe was the magnified anatomical structure of a hair and the root. She started explaining the various parts of hair and its growth cycle. I listened for the first five minutes where I understood that more than one hair can grow from a root and its life span can go until 6 years, but carelessness can reduce it to just a year and maybe a few months, after which I went completely blank. So there I was sitting opposite to Kelly playing ‘Hey Jude’ by Beatles on my head while she was trying her hard explaining the biology of hair.
Kelly: So, are you ready to take the test?
Me [Pressing the pause button to ‘Hey Jude’]: Sorry?
Kelly: Can we take the test now?
Me: Yeah sure, if you feel so.
So she turned on the monitor of the computer, which was a touch screen, entered my appointment id and pressed enter, which showed my details. She took the small scanner attached to the computer, which looked somewhat like the handle of an egg-yolk mixer, walked over to my side and placed it on my scalp.
Kelly: You see, that is dandruff and you said you did not have dandruff problem.
Me: Well, I never see the powdered version on my shoulder when I wear black shirts like on TV.
Kelly [placing the scanner on some more parts]: You see, there are more and it is all over your head. You have an oily scalp too.
Me: But how can that be? It has been ages since I used oil on my hair.
Kelly: Ok Vijith, let me tell you some more things about the hair. [Oh No, here she goes again]. There are two types of dandruffs. First type is the dry one. This is the kind of dandruff that you see on your shoulders when you see wear a black shirt, like on TV. Let’s say that you have this kind of dandruff; then you will have to go through with our treatments. Second is the moist one, which sticks to your scalp, the one you are having. You will have to go through with our treatments for this one as well. This type of dandruff is hard to remove as it goes off slowly. Many washes will be required and sometimes there is no guarantee even. That is where our treatment comes into act. Let’s say you take our treatment, which is three treatments after this one, if you sign up for $300; you come in every Sunday for three weeks and after that you will see a considerable amount of dandruff gone. Then you can choose to continue or not. Let’s say you choose to continue; then we will have some more treatments at discounted prices offered only to our customers. You will see more reduction. Let’s say you do not choose to continue, there are more chances that the dandruff will comes back and you will be back to the same stage.
Me [After having counted ‘Let’s say’]: Ok. I have another question. What if, and I say this hypothetically, what if I shaved off my hair? Won’t the dandruff sticking to my scalp go away?
Kelly: Why, you want to shave your head? I can do that.
Me: I meant hypothetically, Kelly.
Kelly: If you want, I can shave your head. I am a head-stylish too.
Me: That is impressive, but no, thank you.
Kelly: Well, for your information, it won’t completely. There might be traces of it remaining in the pores and the chances are that it will come back, once your hair grows back again.
Me: But I cannot come back here every Sunday for hair treatment. How will I go for hash run?
Kelly: What is hash run?
Me: It is an event happening fortnightly where we run for beer. I cannot miss all that beer.
Kelly: Well, let’s say that you do not want to continue your treatment by coming here. There is still an alternate way. We will give you the products and instructions on how to use it. You can do it at home following the same.
Me: You want me to follow a procedure everyday of applying some things to my hair before I take bath every day.
Kelly: Yes. There are not much. You need to use our special oil, massage it and keep it for 15 minutes, then the shampoo and conditioner during wash and at the end, a special cream.
Me: That’s a lot of time. Do you have any other alternate solutions?
Kelly: Our treatment that you can sign up for.
Me: Can I go back home, think about it and if I do agree, give you a call back?
Kelly: Let’s face it Vijith, we both are humans and we both know that you are not going to call back.
Me: You sure do know what’s going on inside the head even huh? Well, let me put this honestly to you. I have never had hair treatments in my life and this is my first time in a beauty saloon and in just five minutes after entering through that door, I realized that I don’t belong here. This is not who I am and I am not comfortable doing hair treatments.
Kelly: Well, it is your choice and I am no one to force you. But if you leave now, you will loose your chance for the offers on our treatments. Many people have made this mistake and later had to pay the whole price for it.
Me: I don’t mind. If I really do want the treatments, I will get it at the high price.
Kelly: Well, your wish. But you should know that if you do not take care of your hair, you will soon be bald. Do you really want to walk around with all the girls ignoring you?
Me [Yeah right! As if they are all trying to get me to bed right now!]: I guess, I will take the chance. I mean, things are getting pretty easy right now. I could use some challenge. But if you want me to refer my friends to you, I will be more than happy to.
Kelly: Alright. Here are some coupons that you can pass on to your friends. Tell them to ask for Kelly. You still have your hair treatment left. Shall we proceed to that?
Me: And what exactly is that?
Kelly: It’s exactly the treatment that will help you reduce your dandruff. But you will get only one. If you want more…
Me: Yeah, I get it. Shall we?
And we went to the backside of the parlor where they had these chairs with mirrors in friend of them. She asked to move over to the other side and lay down. Five seconds and swoosh, the tap was on and my hair were all wet. She then applied some shampoo, rinsed it for sometime and then washed it again. This step was repeated with something else, which I believe was the conditioner? She then handed me a towel and asked me to sit in one of the chairs while she wrapped a gray plastic kind of cloth around me.
Kelly: Are you feeling comfortable? Do you want something to read?
Me: Yes, that would be nice.
Kelly [Handing me a copy of ‘Men’s Health]: I will get the tonic now. Sit and relax.
I sat there, browsing over the pages of Men’s Health. Have you ever come across a magazine, which you never thought might be interesting and hence never got a copy? Well, Men’s Health turned out to be one for me. Articles on Sex and how to be good in bed and the new generation women and what not! I decided to get one if I ever managed to sneak out of there alive.
Kelly returned with a small bowl containing some greenish paste. She showed me the paste and told that it is a special tonic used in China for dandruff problem. And when she put it closer to my nose to smell it, I was sure that it was Henna paste. Prabi Chettan and KK always use to put that on their head during my college hostel days. Yeah, Chinese tonic, right!
Kelly: This will be a bit cold when I put it on to your head.
Me: Ok. What do you call this paste?
Kelly: [She actually said something in Chinese, which I don’t remember; apologies]
Me: It’s very cold. Will it freeze my brain?
Kelly: No, it won’t. It will get warmer. Just wait.
And after applying the ‘tonic’, she covered my hair with a red cap. Then she pulled some kind of an alien thing, like a transparent melon, cut open from its bottom, attached to a movable arm or pipe fixed at the back of the chair and put it over my head, its void covering the red cap, which concealed my hair with Hanna paste. She suddenly noticed the frightened look on my face through the mirror and let out a smile.
Kelly: First time doing this Vijith?
Me: Yes. You are not planning on killing me right?
Kelly: No, hold on. It’s nothing. It will just warm your head and help loosen the dandruff.
And she left after turning that thing on. And slowly and slowly it started heating up. I turned around to see a guy sitting at the far end, enjoying this thing and all I could think was how in the hell is he enjoying this thing? I turned around and looked in the mirror. Covered in a silly grey cloth, a red cap and an instrument which made me look like I was having a cosmetic surgery, I felt like a girl for the second time in my life [First time was the High heels incident, if you remember]. The only thing manly was the magazine I was holding and the goatie on my chin which might confuse the on-lookers of my gender.
Five minutes passed, ten and fifteen crawled, twenty limped and after half an hour, a lady appeared and took that stupid thing off my head. By that time, I was sure that all my brain cells were dead and my head was filled with nothing but steam. She removed the red cap and asked me to go to the wash area. Failing to get my response, she shook me and helped me out of the chair. Washing the henna off and then returning back to the chair was something I felt like being stoned, but with no sense at all. Soon, she was drying my hair and applying some last tonic when I came back to reality.
Me: Where is Kelly?
New Lady: She got a new client to attend to. Don’t worry, I am a consultant too.
Me: Oh, glad to hear.
New Lady: Was your session good?
Me: Oh yes, it was abysmal!
And there you go. I finally got to use the term ‘abysmal’, which Joey Tribbiani thought was a word of appreciation and which the new lady had no idea to, because I could see her smiling from the mirror.
Soon, I got out of the store, with a bag containing a shampoo, conditioner and two tonics handed to me by the new lady, alive and with a new motivation towards life. I somehow have this faint idea that Kelly actually wanted to kill my brain cells because I didn’t agree to sign up for the treatments. I tell you man - a scan, a treatment and a bag with some beauty items for $8 is not worth the pain I went through the entire process. Not. One. Bit. And one thing remains unexplained still – why do women pay to get this pain? I guess, some things are better left unexplained. Period.