Since everyone’s in the spirit for writing ‘open letters’, I thought I should not be left too far behind. After all, I too have an audience… of five!

So, here is an open letter to not one, but everyone who made news in the few weeks or so. While every second person is busy washing someone else’s dirty linen in public, I sure as well hope that this letter would stir up a real storm in the parliament… well, there’s already some kinda 2G storm happening there… so I will skip that!

But I do hope it gives enough fodder for the Indian media, thus opening a floodgate to many more revelations… but they already have a ‘Barkhagate’ that they’re trying to secretly shut down!

Jeez, what the heck. I will still write… (so what if no one’s listening!) Please note that the content of this letter is purely fictitious. Any resemblance to any person or animal living or dead is coincidentally intentional.

———-

Dear Mr A. King,

With reference to your six-paragraph letter dated 31st October 2010 on ‘Give and take of 2G’, can you please clarify the first three paragraphs? And it would also help if you can explain the last three too? I do know to read Malayalam, but Tamil becomes a little ‘out of my territory’!

I agree with you on most points after your signature line, which mentions your office address. But I am being told that Mr. C-bal is now occupying your premises. Let me know how I can help.

Dear Mr. A-Shock Chai Van,

Sir, with reference to the missing documents, you can take my word – they aren’t with me! I thought I’d thrown them to my TV screen while watching a ‘loud’ news channel anchor. But I love my TV way too much. These papers could be found lying in the bathroom of the numerologist who suggested to you to make your name a little longer, eventually resulting in your reign getting shorter.

Dear Mr. Yedu-Rapper,

I wish I was a minister in your cabinet. By hook or by crook, I would have managed to complete five years in that chair, with a few add-ons in the form of land. It is good to know that you are a loving and caring father, who would put his job on the line to give his kids the best ‘deal’ possible!

Dear Mr. Moon PL,

I believe you already got a reply from my boss on your letter. And that should do. But you know, you might just have stirred a hornet’s nest and hit yourself on the foot with a few old heavy and explosive GSM phones!

Dear Mu-Cash Antila,

Can I use your bathroom anytime I walk along that lane? I promise, I won’t switch off the light after I use it. And since you’ve so much of vulgar money, if you’re going on a holiday for a month, it will be great if you can pass on the money that you’d kept for paying the electricity bill. It can buy me a big enough house for myself.

Dear readers,

I’m extremely grateful to the five of you who continue to read this blog despite being a disgrace to blogging.

Love,
Mallu Mumbaikar


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Even as I walked inside that massive structure, which was then, rated as ‘Asia’s Best’ (I think it still is), I couldn’t help but wondering, I must be the most ‘out-standing’ boy here. Literally! I was standing out in the crowd of youthful exuberance.

I hadn’t quite made that transition from a school-boy to a ‘college-dude’. And not to forget, I was (and I still am) a small-town boy. I disliked jeans. And you still won’t see me wearing t-shirts too often. So here I was dressed in formals from head to toe (or should I say – collar-to-toe). Neatly pressed formal attire. Nicely polished shoes. Formal ‘executive’ bag. A scrawny little fella walking into one of the yuppiest colleges in the country. Out of place? Understatement. I was to later find out that I was tagged as a ‘salesman’ by a few, who later became my good friends! Can’t blame them. But I really didn’t care. Neither did I face something that was termed as a ‘cultural shock’. I guess I was too ‘dumb’ then to figure all that out!

I was just trying to make sense of this sheet of paper, supposedly, the time-table. On it was ‘20B’. I had no clue what that meant, till I was told it was the classroom number.

I guess, the priority though was to get my concession form. And that was my first of many ‘encounters’ at the concession counter. It was an ‘adventure’ for many. I will leave it at that…

And of course, I had to miss my first lecture – Economics. I went within 5 metres of 20B. But, of course, didn’t have the courage to ‘excuse myself’ to enter the classroom. Didn’t want 110 odd people (only 14 of them being guys) staring at this ‘out-of-place’ guy walking in.

I waited for the next lecture. And walked in to sit next to a guy. The 14 guys had occupied two benches, one of which could seat 7 of us. History – a subject that I hated in school and had opted out for my Junior College (eventually ended up majoring in the subject). Where on earth do I go for Political Science? Sheet said, ‘20F’. The professor had already walked in. And there was no way that I would raise my backside to get out of the classroom now! First day – first two lectures – and I am yet to realistically ‘attend’ a single one.

Twenty minutes into break time. After briefly roaming around aimlessly, I came back and stood next to the window outside 20B. This was before ensuring that my next lecture’s going to be here. There was no way I was going to let this day pass without attending at least a single lecture.

1:20 PM – I get a tap on my shoulder. Bijoy (now we call him lambu for obvious reasons) –my first friend! It was difficult to keep pace with him, on the walk and even on the talk. With BJ, you have to walk fast and allow him to finish talking. He has changed on the latter aspect though. He, now, doesn’t finish talking at all! 😉

First day ended by 4 PM. I don’t really remember much of what happened after that, but am grateful that this 6’ tall guy put me at ease!

A week later, on 10th of June 2000, I found my second friend. Merwyn D’souza. This fella hasn’t changed one bit. Merwyn ten years back is the Merwyn you see now. His secrets? He doesn’t share them! Or rather, he has no idea himself. But this guy’s PJs, as much as his looks, have remained constant. They continue to make you wanna whack him hard, yet put that laugh on your face!

I am not sure when I befriended Carlo. It must have been during a Socio lecture when he happened to sit next to me and encouraged me to narrate a story to the class about a Near-Death Experience that I had. When he reads this, he would have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about. He remembers only what he chooses to… just like the 20 runs I gave away in the final over of the finals! 😉

With Anish too, the case was much the same. I guess we became friendly during our cricket matches or History classes. But with him around, there was always a prank around the corner!

And then of course, a lot of friends became a part of me through my college life, most of them left, but these four stayed on and continued to be a friend of this scrawny little guy from Dombivli who ‘needs his visa renewed’ and ‘his passport updated’ every time he comes to meet them in their ‘city’!

But despite all these changes in the environment, I survived. Rather, I enjoyed every moment of Xavier’s. Very subtly, it changed my attitude, but it let me remain ‘Me’!

Note:
This blogpost is a reaction to a photo-album that Carlo showed me recently. Some of those pics were taken about a decade back and they did what they were supposed to do – bring a feeling of nostalgia…


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