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Friday, February 20, 2015

Doctors Union


It was in the nineties ,

We were running a clinic in Cochin west, for more than 10 years then and we had reasonably busy practice.

Strangely We were one among the many couple doctors who practiced in the same area, yet to know why so many couple doctors were attracted to the place

Palluruthy is a thickly populated middle and lower class locality with a sprinkling of upper class  and hence many of us had very busy practice

Most of our patients used to think we doctors keep among ourselves specially since we were all competing for the same clientele but it was nothing of the sort,

we were all quite close and used to meet often laughing at the common tribulations we went through in our day to day practice ,there was no rat race at all and we even went for short picnics together on and off ,some among them are still our closest friends .

Family medicine is a bit different from hospital practice one needs lot of communication, patience empathy and listening and in turn one receives trust

I had written earlier on this

 

To make the story short our bete noirs were the local small time political pests who made a beeline to the clinic whenever they needed money as to everyone squeezing a doctor was a fair proposition especially in Kerala

Malayalee’s in general probably fed by their breast milk of trade unionism felt Doctors to be bourgeois and it was all right to squeeze one when it was opportune .

So every other day small coterie of mundu or lungi clad inveterate would barge in between patients never waiting in line with an officious look on their vacant faces

We had to bear these mosquitos as much as we had to the real ones in Cochin

We learn to grin at both

“ Daktar , so busy , I see making lot of money from all our poor sick is it? “

One of the morons would ask while the others would wear their imbecile looks

“I thought I was treating them “ me  

“ Oh whatever anyhow daktar we have our state committee meet coming up ,

have you heard about it ? “

As if one could not live without hearing of this earth shaking event

“ Well haven’t actually but saw several posters and assumed it should be one of those “

“ Never belittle our revolutionary conferences my dear doctor we decide on how you all should live”

This was delivered with a hint of….. don’t be smart guy ….in it ?

“ Oh yes I can see that “..me

He continued with a frown on his face

“So how much should I write the receipt for is it two thousand or five ?”

“ Oh don’t you have receipts of   hundreds ?”

“We may but it is not for your ilk who regularly milk the working class of their blood just because they have some fevers “

 “Oh and I thought I remember you coming and thanking me for  making your child with primary complex better last October now its only fever is it ?or is he not having working class blood ? “ me

That made him quiet

He just wrote a two thousand rupee receipt collected the money and walked off with his sorry flock of parasites

 

So this was the routine not only for our clinic but for every doctor in that area

We decided to do something about this and planned to start an organization to pay them back with their own medicine

We decided to call it Palluruthy  Doctors forum ….PDF in short and as UDF and LDF the two main parties were known to even babies PDF would be easy for their small minds to grasp

We even registered it and made official bye laws etc

We hung a notice in every members clinic stating that as members of PDF from now on no donations can be given by its members individually unless it was below 20 Rupees and that all donation seekers should send an application which would be discussed in the following executive committee which met once in 2 or 3 months and decision would be made to give from the common fund ,any harassment of individual members would  be opposed by the organization

All very legal and high sounding and written to impress in the language those nincompoops would understand

The next time the same group came for a collection I just pointed to the board and also handed him a copy of the same
“Oh so you doctors became clever is it ?”

“Oh no how can we? when you are all around we just following your footsteps to organize “
“In fact we are planning to have a state working committee next month how much would your party give ?”

This shocked the idiot
“Doctor we need donation now how long will it take ?”

“ Maybe two or three months we people unlike you are quite busy you know and we have no time to meet often so next meeting we will deliberate on your application and maybe give you something after say 6 months “

“ But if it is twenty rupees I can give you now “

He grinned foolishly
“Ok doctor after all you serve the poor so you can give that twenty no problem “

Yes I know every paisa is needed for you guys to go straight to your toddy shop I thought

And thus ended our harassment
We still laugh over those CDF days

 

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Selfies


The world of Selfies

The moment of discovery that smart phones can turn their cameras to click the person behind the camera can be considered as one as historical as much as the discovery of the camera itself .

Suddenly the hidden figure who clicked others and the world at large found to his delight that he could now become the prime image of his device!

To all the narcissists peering at the mirror and asking the question tell me who is the most beautiful among us? The selfie  was made to order

Suddenly the clicker gained independence no more d id he have to rely on unwilling or uninterested neighboring help to click his sad face ,he could do it himself or herself anywhere and with anybody he favored

Selfies with celebrities became the rage and selfies in a crowd of happy friends was a delight

Selfies with varied landscapes during travel was an addiction

As the newer phones brought better quality of their front cameras with better resolutions and easier focusing, selfies are clicked in millions and posted to the cyber world in seconds

The art of selfie taking itself is still new and there has been no strict rules and commandments laid out so far

I would define the right selfie moment as below

The mechanics of a perfect selfie is that the click should be done at that nano second of the right expression adorning the selfed face and not in the penumbra  of anxiety before and after that single point in time …one could term this as Haris selfie commandment one

The wrong moment of taking selfies gives comic results

 Some appear as if they are crying with their face sad and dejected, others appear weird trying to look at the camera and looking away from it at the same time

Some try to fit in the back ground so well that they lose their own head or eyebrows or some other vital part

Some are angry and stare with a fury

celebrity selfies were made a rage by Obama taking time off a not very right occasion for taking selfies poor Nelson Mandela after having been incarcerated by the imperial powers for years and after getting freedom from the whites becomes a world celebrity only to die and have a fellow black celebrity leader gleefully clicking away with good looking presidents of other countries instead of crying his heart out Nelson would surely have squirmed wherever he was then

somebody else did squirm then and that was Obamas wife who was furious with her husband behaving like a juvenile whenever he saw a pretty face and like a school boy sitting in the back benches he with his new found face and another leader went about clicking selfies and the next thing we see is a sullen Obama shifting his seat away from the said beauty and a stern wife sitting in between with an expression of you come home for the rest

President of the US of A may be the mightiest man in the world but you know what happens when you are married at home you are just another married  mouse!

And then came the selfie stick

With this came further liberation the angles were better the anxieties were lesser and on could take better selfies

With remote buttons and more sophisticated sticks which shortened could be put  inside pockets and could be used as a weapon if needed

And so the selfie addict goes on clicking his way to glory

Monday, February 16, 2015

My Angel

I still remember Mr Peter who taught me in seventh Standard ,he was a terror for us
He  taught us mathematics  if I remember correctly ,
he used to wear sunglasses most of the time as he had some eye problem ,coupled with that he was known to get angry quickly and used to even make fun of us having nicknames for each of us of course all this was in jest to make us good I realized later but at that time he was one of my childhood night mares  .
I lost my dad quite early in life when I was just 10 years old ,though he did not let us in penury and provided us with enough comforts for a decent upbringing my mother wanted to be independent of her relatives who pressurized her to move to our village in Kerala and this was something she would not do as she knew our education would not be the same as in Madras
what a great mother she was !

So even though we had literally a palace in Parappanangadi my mothers place in Kerala we stayed put in Madras in a middle class locality in Mylapore very near to my school the Santhome High school today the Santhome higher secondary school .
There was nothing we did not have and both me and my elder sister were quite happy with a house that my dad built in another part of the city providing us rent and we also getting his family pension regularly .
I still remember me  standing in que in my half shorts in the Tamilnadu secretariat for the family pension renewal as my dad had been an employee there before he left us all so suddenly .
i rememebr travelling by bus to Kilpauk to get rent from our tenant wo would pin it in my shirt pocket so that it wouldnt be picked in the bus ,it did happen once as a finger tried to sneak into my pocket and i clamped on it and he swiftly disappeared .
I learnt early

Childhood without a father is a bit painful specially when every time a new teacher comes or we enter a new class we had to introduce ourselves and the first question those days was
whats your dad doing ?
I would shrink from this sorry question and pip meekly
 I dont have a father ,
some would tut tut while others had even asked and how do you live !
one sir had even declared Harimohan is a poor father less boy !

So the time came once when the teachers decided to come to each home to collect a donation for some fund ,I dont remember but it was for some building and the personal home visit was to garner huge donations ,
our school generally did not do that but it had a fair sprinkling of reasonably well offs too and it never collected extra money so fair enough .

I knew my mother was quite careful with spending money  so I warned her not to give sob stories of losing her husband and just give what they ask specially because Peter sir was supposed to come to my house with others and he would not budge without getting the dues .
he is very strict just give what he asks ok I  told
she just nodded her poor head
the D day came ,
I welcomed all of them inside
please come sir please sit down sirs
My mother came and folded her hands
hows Hari, sir in studies ?
Hari is ok nice boy not very keen on sports but good in his writing
even those days to me reading a book or writing was more interesting than playing cricket and I shirked PT classes as much as possible .
Madam we are needing some funds for the school building and we need all the help we have marked a minimum amount for every parent so we came to collect it .
My mother said
we are not poor sir we can manage to give that amount its not a problem but I do not know if you are aware that Haris father left us all when he was 10 years old and I need to have a tight control on my purse ,Iam sure you will understand
her eyes were filled when she said this

I was shocked
I knew it was the disaster I did not want to happen
I dare not look at them now
Peter Sir would  punish me for sure
I was near Peter sir then

suddenly I felt a warm hand caressing my hair
no madam nothing needed we are sorry we should not have troubled you
your looking after your children against all odds is a lesson to all of us
may God be with you and your family

He looked at me and said Hari you should study well to be a worthy son of this mother of yours who loves you so much
saying this they left

My mother looked at me and said sorry Monne ( son )


no Amma I know I know said I

I still remember Peter sir my nightmare who turned into an angel that day

how much memory teachers leave on us even after decades


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Mallu mouth

The great sickular state of Kerala is overjoyed at the way things have happened in Delhi ,loss of face to BJP is like a good hartal gone well for Kerala
so the media goes about with catchy phrases like the lotus being nipped in its stem ,the great march of BJP halted ,and reverse of BJP fortunes from now on and so on and so forth ,
its great expert commentators are falling over each other to declare the death knell of the party they hate the most and the man who brought i...t to the top ,
They rant and rave
its because of their arrogance ,its because of their not doing anything ,the great Indian public has seen the true face of BJP
what vocabulary brilliance !

I feel God when portioning intelligence gave to the Malayalee a great gab but not enough sense to speak the gab !
he is excellent in reeling off in pure malayalee exuberance ,
words come out of his mallu mouth with no stop and like a mimicry artiste he can gab for hours
don't ask what he means but ,mostly he doesn't mean much
the very people who have patiently borne a Government which has done nothing since its inception instead of fighting amongst its own coalition partners with the choicest sound bytes filling the TV day in and day out ,jumping from scandal to scandal the Government has not even the ability to build toilets in girls schools leave alone managing a state
bankrupt and begging it bumbles along and the great media of this state now espouses on a Government which in 8 months has done more than 6 decades of ineffectual impotency by the previous Governments be it in the defense ,foreign ,financial sector ,perceptible changes like bank accounts for every citizen ,no nonsense approach to Pakistan and China strengthening of internal security better foreign relations and investment climates stricter timings for government offices
all this had already happened ,
when did we have any Government that worked in this country ?
leave alone Kerala where the people are happy with only the two morbid parties that keep juggling their power seats in alternate periods and their fates like ping pong balls
.,and now the same media is going ga ga just because a tiny place like Delhi has been lost to a maverick who will show his true color shortly and declare it as a Modi stopper ,
stopping Modi ( read not BJP ) will only make our country fall into the loop of having none with vision or dedication and our country will be the losers
So guys and gals be smart and start thinking after all you are in news in media and you have to think with your heads and not with your mouths
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