All else was fine but for a few pot-holes-turned-into-manholes in the islandish city of Mumbai. It was sometime in mid September, just after my twenty-somethingth birthday (blur intended). The sun at last took some time out and graced the wet-clothes which have been hanging on the miles long clothesline between Church-gate and Borivili since June. That was the time the clouds went berserk spraying water all over the place for the next thirteen weeks. It was raining cats and obese dinosaurs all through and almost gave Cherrapunji a shudder.
Things just started looking bright when my befriended roommate came barging in with his usual heavy gait of a drowsy polar bear just after a heavy pasta treat. He incidentally had decided to take part in one of those umpteen essay contests which keep popping up whenever you open your eyes after every blink. The topic – “What woman wants?” I know, I know, this topic is more common than the ubiquitous cows on the streets and everywhere else of suburban and non-urban India. But somehow it appealed to my friend, Ted (name has been misrepresented after severe panic requests from him. They were all from his cell phone).He asked me to sit down with him and storm both our brains so that he can expect the ten grand prize money that was up for grabs. It would take care of his disc, petrol, and SIM CAT expenses for the next month. I didn’t have anything much to do either. And so we sat and talked.
I roughly reproduce the dialogue in my own lingo which is more like English.
Ted: What does a woman want?
Me: Chocolate bars, ice creams, long drives.
Ted: What was that?! I thought you would come up with something more profound. Something that can stir and heat up the thought organs of the readers and make them fetch cups of coffee to read more.
Me: Hey listen, I have spent some time with a few teaspoonfuls of women and I think what I just said is right. But wait. I haven’t finished yet. They also want cute looking teddy bears that they hold tight and sleep.
Ted: I can’t really win the prize with all these brainwaves of yours. Get me something more dramatic. You know what I mean. For instance, they want to be assertive, self-dependent, live-on –their-own kind of things.
Me: O yeah, but don’t think what I said was a tad wrong? Market research statistics yell that there are more teddy bears with women than real bears on the planet. Nestle and Cadbury Schweppes probably claims that seventy percent of their revenues come from feminine tummies. Huh. Let me list down the few things on what they really desire. Hey wait – but there are so many types of women, the smart kinds, the shy kinds. Then we have the arrogant, friendly, vamp, the ones with thousand body-piercings et al. Everyone has so different desires and wants that calling it an essay would be an undersized statement.
Ted: All that is fine. But one newspaper wants an essay out of it and there are going to be entries, right?
Ted: So let me give an entry. All right… Let me think. They want good lasting relationships. They want the Mr. Perfect to come to their lives and take them on a heavenly ride. [Pause]. The knight in shining armor on a black horse emerging out of the palace pavement. Purple haze, a chill in the air titillating the senses. He bends down, takes her hand, a kiss and they go on a ride across the rolling meadows, dark jungles, and then back to the palace
Me: Ah! So now you are getting to your point.
Ted: Maybe. [Pause] They also want to do things their way. Climb the Everest, walk on Mars, run Wal-Mart. Rule. Rule. Rule. I want more ideas.
Me: Hmm… Let Freud come back from the washroom.
Ah! I hear the flush.
[P.S. On a heavier note, SWIM (Successful Women In Management) 2009, like every other year, would be conducted on the 12th of August. It is to celebrate the essence of being a successful woman manager. Ms. Anu Aga of the Thermax Group would be the Chief Guest for this Event. She, along with other women luminaries would be sharing the same floor that very day. It’s one event that the entire Great Lakes fraternity is proud of. The uniqueness, enthusiasm and adrenalin- full marks to all. Do keep visiting the website for more updates on this.]