Saturday, February 13, 2016


Daivik and me were preparing to watch the Australian Open semis between Federer and Djokovic. I had given sufficient build-up and Daivik was quite gung-ho about it. We were ready before the toss and waiting. The two players were warming up when the referee walked in with a little girl.
"What does she do in the match", asked Daivik. The little girl tossed up a coin for the players to call heads or tails.
"Why does she do that", asked Daivik. "To decide who gets to serve first", I said and went on to explain the idea behind the coin toss. I didn't quite know when to stop and started rambling about the concept of randomness.
He listened quietly for a while and asked, "So, it is like rock-paper-scissors". "Yes, Daivik, that's great. It is very similar", I exclaimed. Daivik got carried away and suggested, "Appa, they can also do Lady-Hunter-Tiger".

This was new for me! "What's that", I asked. Daivik started explaining, "Appa, look, hunter kills the tiger, so he is wins; tiger eats the lady, so tiger wins ", and in the same non-chalant vein added, "lady is powerful than hunter, so lady wins".  I waited for a while for some explanation on the last part, none was forthcoming. I considered this for a second and agreed to its faultless logic.
"So, Appa", Daivik wanted to know, "why don't they do Lady-Hunter-Tiger instead of toss". It was a good question, I had no answer.

But I amused myself for the next several seconds imagining Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic playing Lady-Hunter-Tiger to decide who gets to serve first. 

Friday, August 28, 2015

Pink candy

At first, there is nothing. Or probably a delicate haze, like being in a fog. Slowly, an outline emerges. Hey, this is interesting. As the fog lifts, by degrees, the form becomes clearer and excitement mounts. At some point, the form acquires recognition and gets a name. Quite suddenly, it is crystal clear, unmistakable, undeniable. It's a candy ! A pink one at that ! Aha, joy beams onto you as you reach out for the candy, eyes glittering, grin pasted and soft music cooing in the background. You are almost there, candy is just within reach, when a large hand appears out of nowhere and in one swift brutal unjust motion snatches it away from you.

The cruelty of the act takes a moment to register. At the same moment, you recognize the hairy monster that snatched the candy - it's your father ! The cruelty and the recognition converge rapidly onto a point and you yell out a cry, a deep piercing cry.

Your mom comes running in. "What happened dear, were you dreaming?". Amidst your tears, you manage to blurt out "candy". This irritates the mom. "First thing in the morning, you want a candy...go brush your teeth". Uff, she doesn't understand.  This makes you sob more. Mom softens a bit and takes you in her arms. Reassured, you say, "pink candy". "Not now...", she starts saying. There she goes again. You start crying again, but manage to say "Appa took my pink candy" (and that's your first full sentence of the day!). "Oh, your father took your pink candy in your dream?", mom summarises, cuddles you for comfort, and simultaneously calls out for the culprit.

The father, oblivious to his crime, walks in, sees you awake and chirps in "Good morning". You don't respond, and he finds two pairs of accusing eyes staring back at him with a penetrating gaze. "Where is the pink candy?", mom demands. "What pink candy?", he asks. Ouch, wrong question. Not only does he snatch away the candy, now he is what-pink-candying you. Indeed! You start crying. "The one you took from her", mom declares, with an increasing intensity in her voice. Before he could respond, she adds for his benefit, " her dreams".

"Aha", says the father, uncertainties cleared, and now on terra firma. "You know what the pink candy told me?". You stop crying and get mildly interested. "It told me that it will wait for a little girl". He then picks you up from your mom. Her job done, mom returns back to her chores. Dad continues, "Pink candy told me that it will wait for the little girl who brushes and showers first".

And thus, the task of preparing you for the day, which normally takes anywhere between 10-100 minutes, gets completed in record time.

Of course, when you are ready, the pink candy is ready too and waiting for you :)