Sunday, April 15, 2012

Vertiginous Stuff


Things, dear readers, have been mildly interesting the last couple of months. Stuff’s been happening. For starters, our very own favourite uber-cool auto-AC city has decided to turn itself off just to spite us. I knew we’d jinx it eventually, what with our continual boasts and preening and strutting about how you have absolutely no idea what it’s like to be living in the best city in the world. But I was kinda hoping it’d happen after my time. Apparently, when Bangalore gets spiteful, she does a proper job of it, with a real venom-spewing, acid-regurgitating malice that I didn’t know demure little Bangalore had in her, because I’m back to my favourite Pilani pastime. Flying.

Yes, flying. I’m sure every one of you that’s not living in Scandinavia has experienced the masochistic joy of making existence a non-contact sport. No comprendo? Well, I’m talking about that uniquely miserable sensation of knowing that if any part of your body is to make any sort of contact with anything at all for any amount of time, you’ll find that particular part dripping in sweat before you can blink and say ‘Bloody heat’. Or something stronger.

Sleeping’s when the surface area of contact is maximum, so that’s out. You don’t sleep anymore. Sitting is OK to a point, but you really don’t want to be sweating in the places you’ll end up sweating. Standing’s better, but feet love to stink and if you push it you’ll find yourself sorely tempted to amputate yourself at the ankles. Flying, it is then. Well, I’ll not lie here. You have a few other options. You could, for example, do a Kate Winslet and spend your days walking around on your toe tips. (Scratch that; walking’s sweaty business. Spend your days standing motionless on your toe tips then.) Or you could find a big enough fridge and crawl into it and die, hopefully to be awakened when the first rains hit. I’m not a ballerina, and I don’t do fridges so I’m sticking to flying.

Anyway, flying’s one part of what’s been interesting lately. The other part involves climbing. Recently, I found myself, against my will – I fought tooth and nail, honest – shoved a rung up the corporate ladder. No biggie? It shouldn’t have been, but I’d been strongly advised by sane people not to - never to - look up when that happened. That’s just what I did, of course. Apparently, corporate ladders have so many rungs, you’ll suffer from a sort of inverse vertigo trying to catch a glimpse of the top. Invertigo’s ten times worse than vertigo because it not only turns your legs to jelly and reduces your body to a shivering wreck, but fries your brain. There’s this part of you that’s trying to tell you that you’re being irrational. You’re only a foot off the ground - you cannot possibly be dizzy! Then there’s the other part of you that’s seductively whispering in your ear that everything you know about everything is false. Gravity is a lie. You’re going to fall off the bottom rung into an endless nothingness while the ones at the top – the ones you can’t see because they’re so shrouded in a dazzling whiteness – they’re safe as houses. That’s when your brain decides to ooze out of your ear.

I have to admit though, that euphoria trumped sanity for a little while. That’s when the company decided to entertain itself by chopping off rungs in the ladder randomly, hoping for a giggle or two when the whole endlessly snaky contraption shudders and shakes and dances and ultimately collapses in a senseless heap far, far below. There must have been other reasons – written on the rungs up top, I’ve been told – but the dazzling whiteness makes it hard to read. Anyway, sanity was restored soon, as you can see from the articulate and sensible things I’ve had to say in this blog post.