Sunday, April 1, 2012

The tale of missing earrings

Women are brighter than men. I have absolutely no doubts about that, none whatsoever. And, in these days of liberated and self-reliant women, men often wonder what their role is cut out to be.

In all our years in the land of the free, both Dhanno ki Amma and I had very busy professional lives. And generally, she was much more cerebral in her approach to life than I was. Since urban women in the land of the free are perhaps the most liberated ones in the world, I often wondered, what role men had left to play.

I hate shopping malls. I hate the brick and mortar they are built with. I hate the perfume and the velvet they stock. I hate the roads leading to them, and I hate their parking lots. As someone who grew up in small town India, to me, malls have always been the absolute antithesis of civilized Desi shopping, which for me, can only happen in good old fashioned Bazaars. But, on the few rare occasions that Dhanno ki Amma has dragged me kicking and screaming to the mall, I have realized something very fundamental about the role men have left to play in this modern and scary world.

Men, have been relegated to the task of carrying bags, sometimes, dozens of them, and of dutifully following their women, while they shop. Sometimes, they are also given the task of hanging around the trial rooms in the various clothing stores, and providing yes or no answers to the clothes that their women try on.

Centuries from now, historians will write, "For a long time, human males, carrying heavy shopping bags, dutifully followed the females, just like a camel would follow the Bedouin in the desert. As machines replaced the need for bigger and muscular creatures,  human males slowly became extinct. The invention of the robot, that dutifully followed women in shopping malls, and carried more than fifty pounds at a time, was the straw, that finally broke the camel's back."

With these scary thoughts on my mind, I have been wondering lately, what role men can still play. A few days ago, Dhanno ki Amma  got very upset with me. She lost one of her earrings when she had gone out shopping, and when she told me about it, I was in one of my contemplative frames of mind. So, I had said, "If you can't take care of those things, why do you wear them?"

I won't go into the details of what followed, but I will tell you this. Men,  specially Indian men, have one more task cut out for them, which has been around for centuries before anyone ever thought of shopping malls. The task of finding missing earrings that their women lost. And, since I failed miserably in this task, I have to make amends for the next few weeks. But, in the mean time, I will leave you with a beautiful Desi song from a long time ago, that Desi Babu came across.  It is all about the tale of missing earrings, and where to find them.

dhundo dhundo re sajna, dhundo re sajna more kan kaa bala.. 
(Look for my missing ear-ring, my dear husband...) 


  1. Hahaha good one :) Visiting your blog after a while. It is as refreshing as ever :)

  2. you will write a goddamn post on it but not search for it.and to top that,you just gave us this excuse in writing.

  3. First time listener of this song. It's like so many other LM numbers...melodious & hummable!
    Er...Desi Babu, I think, you should make your peace by buying a new pair of jhumkas. From Bareilly ki baazaar if you don't like malls!!

  4. Second post on earrnings or to be more precise missing earrings - first it was Jhumka gira re and now kaan ka bala........????