Thursday, November 30, 2006

Some People Are Better Left Snubbed

What the title says.

Sunday, November 26, 2006


Alfonzo is back in my life, guys. True, I'm not six and skipping around my garden aimlessly in a cotton frock but at this stage in my life, I might as well be. Without sounding dramatic, he always was the still point of my moving world as a child and now as I have to stand in line to get a visa to go home for the winter, I realise I need him around, that's all.

In other news, this was slipped under my door the other night:
"Hot horny housewife is all very well but will she take you to Paris for 3 nights all inclusive for only £99?"

I'll ignore what this might lead you to think of me, but Alfonzo and I went online to check out what this was about. (Now is when you do the same. Go on, don't be shy. There isn't anyone around. Click here. I know you want to.) And we (re)discovered a fascinating and somewhat depressing fact about human nature - Sex sells like nothing else. But you've got to hand it to these guys - brilliant gimmick!

I have a brother. He is doing his phd in another cold cold city which makes London seem tropical. Last weekend a friend of his came into town to do a part of her research on trade unions and we met up over a late Sunday lunch. Inevitably the topic of conversation moved to the recent death of a classmate of theirs.

"Well, this is how I look at it. You've got to have some survival technique if you're doing our phd programme. Most kids do some drugs. Your brother has his girlfriend and I've got my supplements." And with one swig of water, she downed seven pills of different shapes and sizes.

I considered for a moment what my survival technique is. I'm still not sure but for the time being, I have Alfonzo.

Monday, November 20, 2006


Why has orange become such an unexceptional flavour?

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Devious Delectable Dinners

True to what is drilled into my head every day in class (and outside, come to think of it), even food is turning out to be conniving and predatory. It watches you and decides who you are. Then it melts in your mouth while ensuring a perfect atmosphere conspires against you.

In restaurants such as these, the food has a uncanny way of making its way to your table and deciding just how eclectic a spread you deserve. And naturally, there is also a suitably devious mind picking the lotus and lily stir fry over the asparagus and Exo fish for you.

You are seated in the lounge section because luckily the reservation was made exactly a week ago at twelve noon, during the only half an hour window one gets to make them. Because of this, you are now the most gorgeous girl in the world. An angular beam of light falls from above, highlighting your cheekbones, detracting from your slightly bulbous nose. Your diamonds glisten as you throw your lovely head back in laughter. Soft Keith Jarrett swirls the atmosphere around. The stressed waitress obeys like clockwork the rules of this great universe and everything works its way smoothly to the orchid tea at the end when the lights are dimmed further for the arrival of the bill.

And then you fumble giddily for your bag, smile a sweet thank you and walk up two flights of stairs to go back to that cold, cold world that is the city you live in.

But at least you were gifted a delicate box of fine Belgian praline chocolates that will last longer than those two blissful hours.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

What's your Sexy?

A classmate of mine likes one of our professors - a rather brusque, highly opionated and mostly angry woman of forty plus, who teaches culture studies. Her chain smoking tendency is a factor, he says. It also appears that middle aged professors who talk of eating breakfast with their children score high on the Sexy Scale with the girls. Dark jeans add to such appeal. There too is a consensus about dark rimmed glasses and how they intensify the academic image.

Imperfections are big as well. Absentmined pauses are intriguing. Nervour tics are inspiring. Sexy is varied, let me just say.

The fact is that Academic Sexy is different from Regular Sexy. What is acceptable (even encouraging) about the former is intolerable about the latter. Because not specialising in some obscure field of material science disqualifies you from having distasteful quirks and a receding hairline. I myself can willingly endure otherwise ugly V-neck sweaters and an obsessively numerical worldview.

However, the crisis as some of us later discussed, is exposure. How much is enough? Full time professor? Personal tutor? Or simply a guest lecturer? (who you can stalk later perhaps?)

The question is - What's your Sexy?