Vantage point

Wednesday, July 10, 2002

"The mysterious case of the concoction of 10th July".

Hey, does my vast base of daily readers include the IIML mess cooks? Because they seem to have noticed the praises I have been showering on the food, and it seems like their philosophy in life is "Appreciation leads to depreciation". The reason I say this is the grub we have been getting for the past 3 meals. It's pretty much "take-one-serving-eat-some-dump-rest-in-vast-blue-barrel-forget-second-helping-head-to-canteen" type. The vast blue barrel is what we are supposed to dump any remains in. Today, the 'sabji' they had made, they might have just emptied the whole thing into the blue barrel and saved us an effort.

Let me elaborate a bit on the cirumstances in which it came into our life. There were 5 hours of extremely tedious classes, followed by the usual trudge in the 'lovely' sunlight, to the mess. And as one piles up the rice on the plate, one comes across a greenish creation(colour sorta like Nikita's blog background) of dubious origins. There are also forks and knives, which are usually absent from the cutlery table. So some of us helped oursleves to this breakthrough food item. Why? Because what is life without death-defying adventures? I stuck a fork into one oblong piece and put it in my mouth. It gave me an idea of what a dog would feel if he bit into my canvas shoes. Around me, were seated people, who had wisely stuck only to daal-rice and they observed my endeavours with keen interest. A full scale discussion erupted on what inorganic industrial matter was used in making it, or possibly which exhibit of the natural history museum chopped to pieces. The spices used in the concoction were also deliberated on at length. In the end, we came to the conclusion that it was organic after all, and was either a doodhi or a banana, and the batch used was the last one the Britishers had ordered before they left the Lucknow residency after 1947. I threw in my lot with the 'banana' lobby.

Remind me to ask the mess-wallahs what the damned vegetable exactly was.

I shall now head to the canteen to satiate my hunger. Do conspiracy theorists see the hand of the canteen-wallah behind this episode to boost his sales?

By the way, I did swallow the one piece I had put in my mouth. So if this is my last ever blog, you know what killed me.