We laugh at jokes we would never have smiled to earlier.
We butter people while they know you are trying to butter them to get a job done.
We have superstitions and legacies attached to seats and locations on the floor.
No matter how hard abusing yuou are, for all practical purposes you are an innocent damsel who never heard of any swear words, and doesnt know anything..and of course boos at smoking and drinking. But when work is concerned, should be hard, go getting, ruthless, and totally in sync (if not more than male counterparts).
Of course, if she is all this, she is a bitch.
If she occassionally swears, or claims she drinks, she is 'fast', or avoidable
and If she simply does not fall under above category, she is a nonentity who will get married and leave the job eventually.
We laugh at jokes we would never have smiled to earlier.
Almost 3 years ago, my mother had lovingly chosen unstitched material (from a pushy vendor who would not leave her alone unless she bought something from her) for her only darling (ahem) daughter. Not one. She had chose two. One for herself as well. Hers was an engaging blue with checks on it..which she eventually gave to the maid before getting it stitched...charity se said.
The other was a bright tomato red. Uninterrupted through its length and breadth in its glorious brightness. Apart from a distracting border of black design woven into the cloth at one end, which actually helped in accentuating the colour. The bright colour being one of the favourites of any non-colour blind bengalee - laal.
Not only was it bought for me, but my mother saw to it that a tailor in calcutta stitched it as per my year old measurements in her books, with enough provision for me to have expended by more than a couple of inches. The neckline was interesting, with the creative talents of the tailor coming into play with what he apparently lovingly calles 'ghoti' style (it translated into irregular edged but basically sort of round thing, wide). Anyway, the point it, I got this salwaar-kameez in my hands through my uncle who came for a flying visit (he flew here on a commercial flight, but dint fly in the city) just before the pujas.
Being the naiive obedient girl I was then (I like to believe so), I wore it on Shashthi, to office ... the first day of the pujas. (OK, so the real reason I wore it was that my uncle was still there, and my mom and aunt had asked me to wear it, and not wearing it and showing my uncle - who would dutifully reprt the incident to the higher ups - would mean endless banter for months on phone. Sorry, did I use banter? I meant sour words). It happened to be a holiday that Shashthi...being a fourth saturday or something..it was also the day I met my boss for the first time in person. I was a week old in the job, two months into the company.
So I sat there in office, dutifully working on my new pearl-white computer, handling the mouse and typing on the keyboard. Not distracted in anyway by anything other than events on my screen. My chair was dark brown computer-chair so called ergonomically designed (which managed to give me killing backaches over a period of time, till I replaced it). The table too was an uninterrupted pearl white, the office being white and light grey overall. All around me was peace and quiet as no one else was in office...it being a holiday.
So I sat there clackety-clacking on the computer and clicking on the mouse, casting a furtive glance behind me in case my boss and the other colleague had finished their conversation/ meeting and had remembered my existence. The A/C was working extra hard...it soon became pretty cold to be comfortable. My fingers started going numb. So I lifted them to breathe some life into them...to continue the oedient clicking. They looked a healthy pink. Wow. I wondered. Here they seem to be freezing, and yet they are looking literally in the 'pink' of health.
Rubbing them (in glee?) I looked down to relocate the keyboard. Horror of horrors. It was all Pink. the mouse? Pink. The mousepad? Pink. The desk. Yup. Pink. I close my eyes. Perhaps its a vision problem. I open them again, everything was still pink. The monitor was still white. My arms were a healthy pink, the armrest were black, but if one looked closely perhps you could discern the pinkish hue.
Aerosmith started humming in my mind...
Wherefrom emerged this pink colour? what was the source? Mystery of the Pink-ness. I looked around, and all was pale white...shimmering...ok not shimmering. I looked down. Aha! I was wearing RED. I rubbed my hand experimentally on my kurta..the hand turned a healthier pink. Imagine my embarrasment. Imagine the thought of a new boss, my only boss, my frst boss coming over to my pristine white desk,..to find it transformed into a reddish hue. I went washed my hand and some tissues, and tried wholeheartedly but not very successfuly to erase traces of the individual colour and thereafter desisted touching any A4 sized official paper that could have possibly come my way. Oh, inclde my notepad and (sigh) white pen.
Once home, I ould barely wait to get away from those clothes, and found I had turned into an ever blushing damsel for all practical purposes.
Laali mere laal ki
jit dekhun tith laal
laali dekhan main gayi
main bhi ho gayi laal
However, it stopped turning the world red for me soon enough, and for lack of Salwaar kameezes owned by me then, I wore it often enough.
Just when I thought I will get rid of it, I went home. And this time round, I expressed the wish of buying a katki kurta to my mom. Now Katki is a typical design made by weaving in thread of different colour into the cloth during making the cloth, and is traditionally from Orissa. You get better variety in Bengal than Ahmedabad, I thought. So Mom and I went shopping one day, and this was mentioned, whereupon she took me to a shop from where I bought the mens variety...much better, with pockets and no chunni, and wearale with jeans :) the only colour with a devent design however, was a dark maroon with black and white in small squares.
So I wore it to office today. This time the A/C here not being the best in the lot, I was kinda warm. So when I looked at my pals...they were a fiery pink. A lok at my laptop showed pink edges, and the edge of th desk is pink too. Im fearing the worst once I get home, but ah well...if one red goes, another must come!