Tuesday, June 28, 2011
As usual I was glued to the computer this morning when my maid came to clean my room. We normally don’t exchange words. I just lift my feet up from the ground if I’m busy with something while she sweeps the floor. Otherwise I walk out of the room and take a 5-minute break while she’s at it. There are rare occasions when she decides to get friendly and asks me some irrelevant question to which I usually respond with a nonchalant reply. This was one of those days.
I put my feet up on the chair and continued to do my work while she began sweeping the room. A few minutes later she realized it was ‘Ask-Nerdy-A-Question-Day’.
“Mon enthuvaa padichathu?” [What have you studied, son?]
“English”, I replied taking my eyes off the computer for a second.
“English maathram ee kaalathu aarenkilum padikkumo?”, [Are there people who study English alone these days?] She asked looking as perplexed as an onlooker at Rai Bareily hearing Sonia Gandhi murder Hindi.
“Hmmm...”, I said nodding my head and stopping my work momentarily, waiting for her to say something.
I had my eyes fixed on the monitor even as I paused and waited for her to speak. However she didn’t ask anything else & quickly finished her work & left the room.
Should I have told her I’ve also studied Cinema? I thought to myself. Oh! No. What if she thinks I go to the cinema hall with a notebook every Friday when a new movie releases to take down notes! That would only add to the weirdness quotient she already attributes to me. Sigh!
I continued to do my work leaving the maid to believe that English (Literature) is for dummies while smart people do rare courses like MBBS, Engineering or perhaps this rarest course called MBA. Someday in the near future maids will get smarter and savvier like this one maid I saw in an Advertisement some years back and they'll understand the feelings of poor folks like me.The original ad was in Tamil and shown frequently on SS Music in the mid part of 2000’s until perhaps 2009. It was one of those rare ads that are funny & creative especially for an ad on a ‘Spoken-English course’. I couldn’t find the original on You Tube. Here’s a dubbed version in Hindi.