It was this afternoon, when Neelanjan was fooling around with Parag's poetry (Parag writes soulful Marathi poems in first person), at office today, that it dawned upon me that he happens to be a variety of Bambaiyyas the city seldom acknowledges.

'Neel', as we like to shorten, is like a visitor who's decided to extend his trip to no particular date in the future. A tourist who forgot he must return. An 'objective observer', an outsider for whom it is and will always be "Mumbai", not "Bombay". Despite a confident gait, Neel still fumbles with new routes; he is totally kicked by the whole idea of the purple Merc AC buses; shows streaks of literary brilliance in banal bitching/ pep talk, like, "I know what it's like to be in a relationship with a voice." This is a man who reads Marathi Poetry with a Bong accent and understands all the scattered English sprinkling. He's a complete goof with lots'a taste when it comes to beauty. He's still the fucking intellectual, who refuses to wear tapered shirts to look all "with it" or go gymming for that dream physique every Bombay-boy fantasies. He loves Monalisa-smile Marianne's sarcasm- the privacy of her humor to which even he is often debarred.

Neel would dance his fave step with panache, when no one's looking at work, in that photocopy enclosure for his seating space, as he listens to Arnob or Manna De buried in his laptop screen. He's noisy when he laughs his nasal laughter, loud in expression (read: foulest sprinkling through a 20-minute lunch chatter), yet his ways are quiet, calm even.

He's not a loner, but in his body language, you sense a looking down upon yourself for being the dud you ARE. And he knows you: smart, stupid, emotional (read: stupid), practical (read even more stupid), brilliant, happy, melancholy, miracle maker, heart breaker, funny, never-boring, all-knowing, wise.

So, why the rant about some colleague/ friend at office? Because, my dear, as I began, this city often ignores this extremely entertaining yet endearing variety of individuals, who you must be lucky to come across, yet, merrily dissolve into the flow that throngs the Mantralaya-to-Churchgate parade every evening. One more virtue that resurrects Bombay for me. It shelters quirks. All sorts.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

well.... i nvere knew that was marathi i was speaking..... but hey..... marathi with bong accent.... where else can you find it but India? :)

and no... am not gonna fire.... i mean common, u just wrote a post on someone who is pretentious to begin with.... he is just skipping one rain cloud after another.... :D