May 17, 2013

Don't be that guy either

Continued from:

Don’t be that guy: Deodorant Commercial Guy

Men (most of them) like women. All men like looking at beautiful women. Women also like looking at beautiful women. Beautiful women are nice to look at. There is nothing wrong with that. What is wrong, however, is the way men look at women.

Do we really have to give that aggressive, lecherous, leering stare that involves a 180 degree sweep, full body scan, mental undressing and lusty ogling every time a women passes by? I am not talking about the eve teasers and other assorted jerks near the bus stop. Everyone from class VIII kids to 50 year old happily married uncles in this country stare like they are starring in a deodorant advertisement.

I am not asking you to stop looking at women completely. It is okay to subtly steal a glance once in a while but don’t make them feel uncomfortable. And don’t think even for a second that women like that sort of attention. They do not. I have the inside information. Women do NOT enjoy being stared at like that under any circumstance. Not even a little bit… even if you are Ryan Gosling or whoever that Hollywood Mahesh Babu is.

Don’t be that guy: Dr. U. Salaha

Some people are so very knowledgeable about health, beauty, healthy living and life in general that they feel that it is their duty to educate other people about it, even if they are complete strangers. It doesn’t matter if you have just met and are doing some polite small talk. They have to slip in a piece of totally unsolicited medical, beauty or diet related best practices based advice.

These Dr. Salahas (Salaha = advice) don’t just randomly throw advice. They do a preliminary diagnosis by scanning you from top to bottom, identify some obvious flaws (that you are already conscious about), point them out in public and then offer free solutions.

If you are a little patient, the conversation will eventually steer towards natural, herbal remedies chiefly propagated by Eenadu paper’s Vasundhara supplement.

The more you entertain their advice, the more incredulous it gets.

If you’re not fully convinced about the magical properties of everyday ingredients, they present relevant peer reviewed empirical evidence

And if you endure long enough, they get carried away and might even refer you to their favorite doctor. (This happened to me)

How do we deal with these uncles? 

Don't be that guy: The unofficial Brand Manager

Don’t be that guy who corrects people when they pronounce Volkswagen with a V instead of ‘Fau’. I know it is pronounced Folks-wagon. I just don’t give a shit about the correct pronunciation.

Don't be that guy: The Tip Nazi

Notice how some people are extremely fussy about restaurant service, especially when they are dining at posh restaurants?

They complain about everything. The list goes on and on. They have to complain about everything. People who normally don’t bother washing their hands after peepee demand hand sanitizers after touching a shiny brass door knob. These are some of the profound consequences of our “paisa vasool” mentality.

Then there are Tip Nazis. Tip Nazis are not just fussy about the service. They take it one step further and take it out on the waiters.

When you tell them to relax and calm down, they have a self-righteous tone about it, “It’s their job. I am not asking them anything out of the world. I am just asking them to do their job properly”

Sometimes the “issue” with the waiter “escalates” and the manager has to step in. The manager being experienced in these matters offers a fake smile, an empty apology and a complementary milkshake and Tip Nazi feels like Che Guevara who stood up and showed it to the system. Don't be that guy.

I understand that you’re paying for the ambience, the service and the experience blah blah blah but you’re paying the restaurant, not the waiter! The waiter gets 8000 a month for taking shit from people like you. If you really have the balls, refuse to pay the 14% service tax to the restaurant and tell them you’ll pay when they hire well trained and better paid waiters.

Don't be that guy: The Wedding Uploader

What is the deal with people who spend the first three days of their married life uploading wedding photos on Facebook? Why are they nostalgic about something that happened day before yesterday? And what is with that grand stage, the diamond ring, the kneeling down, and the cheesy proposal during the engagement in front of your parents? Do you have any idea how lame that is?

And people in the audience, why are you saying “aww” in a chorus even though deep down you know that it is an arranged marriage and they are acting out some weird Bollywood dream sequence? Don’t encourage such unoriginal behavior. It is not good for society.

Even more to come...

May 7, 2013

Don't be that guy

Going by Flawsophy’s Via Negativa principle, there are two ways to become a better person. There is the MAXIMIZE GOOD way i.e. you are inspired by people of great courage, integrity, perseverance, wit, charisma, compassion, empathy, humility, kindness, magnanimity and want to be like that. Or you can simply MINIMIZE BAD by trying to ‘not be an asshole’.

Our mythology, popular culture and even self-help books are full of MAXIMIZE GOOD stories of inspiration, determination and the triumph of human spirit but (unfortunately) there isn't much emphasis on the MINIMIZE BAD approach.

Most of the challenges we encounter in the course of our mundane lives are domestic in nature where the stakes are not big enough to force us to “Rise to the occasion” and be a “hero” in the traditional sense. These domestic encounters however leave a lot of scope for people to act like assholes and get away with it and they do it way too often.

I believe that the world will be a better place if everyone consciously avoids being ‘that guy’ who does ‘that thing’.

Don’t be that guy: The Lift Caller

I was in a Schindler’s Lift the other day with six strangers and this fully grown man walked in talking on the phone. It wasn't an apologetic hushed “Okay… okay… I’ll call you later. Byebye” phone call. He was talking on the phone like a boss giving a full-fledged Knowledge Transfer session on the tax saving investment plans he has purchased in his 8 year old son’s name.

Everyone says Indians have no respect for other people’s privacy but they’re all wrong. We are yet to respect our own privacy! Respecting other people's privacy comes much later. I mean look at this guy. He walks in, stands right in between six awkward strangers and has a personal conversation like he was strolling in a coconut grove in Amalapuram.

It didn't end there. Once he was inside the elevator the phone’s reception got worse. A normal person under this circumstance would think, “Oh, I am in a metal box that is dangling in midair in the corner of a tall, large building. I should probably hang up and call back later when I am not surrounded by these creepy elevator people” but not this guy! This guy believes in freedom of speech in its purest form – noise.

Don’t be that guy: Obsessive Compulsive (Missed Call) Disorder

Don’t be the guy who gives 80 missed calls in the 90 minute span when his girlfriend is away from her phone. If she’s not answering the phone, she is probably busy with something, or having dinner, or sleeping, or watching a movie, or reading something, or just doesn’t feel like being on the phone right now. Women have a life outside their relationships too, you know?

As a general rule, do not give more than two back to back missed calls unless large numbers of people are dying in a short span of time (like an earthquake or a Zombie apocalypse).

And girls, stop counting the number of missed calls as a measure for how much he misses you. That is pathetic. If a guy is spending an hour of his free time giving 40 missed calls, it clearly means that he has no hobbies, no interests, no imagination or thoughts of his own. Why do you even like him?

Don’t be that guy: The Street Parkers

When it comes to parenting, parents really suck

I do not wish to contend C2's statement. I would just like to add that society sucks too because there are some things which even parents cannot control.

This gentleman in our colony for instance has two cars but only one car parking spot, so he parks his second car on the street. (It is amusing how people buy cars without figuring out where to park them). Now that he has parked his car on the footpath, it becomes his marked territory. He also gets furious at anyone who doesn't treat that space with the reverence and respect he thinks it deserves.

Thanks to gentlemen like these, there is an endless line of parked cars on every footpath on every street in every colony of every city because of which kids cannot play cricket because “the ball might break something”, cannot burst crackers because “it is too dangerous”. Edu penkulaata (Pitthu/Satoliya), Guti Billa (Gilli-danda) and a hundred other street games are not even in the vocabulary of the next generation because "if something happens to any of the cars, whose father will pay?"

What used to be a nimble, lively, and defining aspect of childhoods in our culture is now a parking lot – a cheap parking lot.

And then these car parkers meet up in social gatherings and reminisce in nostalgia, “When I was a kid, I used to play on the street all the time. In fact during summer vacations, we used spend more time on the street than inside the house… this generation kids toh… they spend all the time in front of the computer and Xbox only baba.”

More to come: