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Warning: Aimless blog ahead. Proceed at your own risk.

This warning is specially for those dudes and dudettes who fail to do their homework and read up on what this site is all about before wading into it’s murky waters. If you will let those lazy eyes move a little bit to your right you will find mentioned clear enough to the meanest intelligence that I bore (to death) readers with not only some so-called tongue in cheek humor, verse,  short stories, rant and other such, but (now this is an all important BUT) also with mere rambling prose that goes nowhere in particular (exact words). Note that carefully, rambling prose that goes nowhere in particular is what I have said, and kindly refrain from acting innocent victims later on. Having said the essential let me proceed to ramble to my heart’s content.

The Lord and Master is…..

What?? Yet another blog on your L & M, Shail?! You posted one a couple of days back! Can’t you talk of something/someone else for a change?! Please?!” That is when you can stop long enough from wailing how women have got a raw deal in society. Gawd! (that is muttered under the breath)

Hmm… Isn’t that the thought that flashed across your mind right now? Indeed, the L & M will be the first man to agree with you on both counts, in case you said the above in his hearing. Hmm… As things stand, he is the only Martian left at home. The other two (the senior and junior sons) have like slippery eels, slipped through my fingers citing job and studies as reason to fly the coop. (Not that I am regretting any of that. Just the thought that they have taken their messy rooms with them brings a smile of relief to my face.). But methinks all that had been a ploy to escape starring in Mom’s blogs.

The sons having abdicated their responsibility, the L & M is the only one left to provide fodder to my supposed blogging, ….ummm… talents. In fact some months (or had it been years?) back I mentioned to him casually that I was going to write a book entitled (The junior son had howled in protest at the proposed name for the book), ‘The Lord & Master, the Kiddos and a Dog’. The L & M had sighed theatrically and  said philosophically, ‘Nee enthu venamengilum ezhuthikko’ (Write whatever you want).

Sheesh. Took me by surprise, the passive reaction, quite unlike the way the sons give ultimatums to what I can or cannot do. The senior was forever cautioning me against writing about him before he left home. He still does at times. Besides he thinks I shouldn’t be meeting people (in his own words), “that I have met on the net”. Talk about controlling kids! Egads, I was and am a much more open and accepting parent than he is as a son. As for the junior son, I remember the time a few years back that I went skipping down the stairs, (the calcaneal spurs had not yet made their appearance and I could merrily hop, skip and jump those days)  to the TV room in the cellar, with my favorite accessory camera in hand. The intention was to record for posterity (aka grandchildren), the posture of ananthashayanam which he assumed while watching television. On seeing me (most importantly, the camera), he had sprung up and  said in warning tones: “Don’t you dare put any picture on your blog!”

Of course all that has changed now and the Martians one and all are keen to get their share of star billing at Shail’s Nest methinks, hopefully. But right now, with only one (the L & M) available at hand to provide the necessary material, I sort of tend to harp back on him a lot more these days. So no amount of yelps of surprise on choice of topic is going to change things. That matter having been settled, let me get back (finally) to what I was saying.

The L & M is…. (this is where if you remember, I was forced to digress) a much harried man these days. Someone is hell bent on disturbing the peace of his well-ordered life-style, shaking him up somewhat in the process. What do you mean you know who it is? You know no such thing and to keep matters straight, I wouldn’t disturb anyone even if you asked me to. So there! I have been noticing two extra lines of worry on his forehead. And I swear today morning I heard him mutter to himself resignedly (even more so than when I told him the name of the book I was going to write and what its contents would be) about how there is nothing he can do about things.

In recent times, a new entrant has joined our household: Nibbles. She had been too tiny and helpless a kitten at the time of her arrival. She is still tiny by human standards, but her helplessness is a thing of the past. With each passing day perhaps feeling thankful for the roof over her head, the soft blanket, the yummy fish and the love of two doting old fogeys (she had been abandoned as a wee little kitten, in the pouring rain, in a plastic bag of all things, along with two of her siblings, who by the way did not survive) she must have felt she had to repay us in the only way she could. Being a joker, entertaining us old fogeys with her antics was her mission. If you remember, Goofy our dog had similar thoughts.

Nibbles has chosen the L & M to be the recipient of her wholehearted and devoted attention, naturally, because he spends time playing with her too. Not like me, neglecting her while tapping away at the keyboard and yelling at her if she so much as stepped in the vicinity of the laptop. Anyways… She plays hide and seek with him, pretends his hands are enemies she must vanquish.

She clambers up (and I must say it is a pretty long climb for a tine thing like her) his legs as if she were trained by the coconut tree climbers of God’s Own Country. With utter disregard for his seniority with regards to age, she teases him by pouncing from behind the curtains, tapping him playfully on his head and running away to hide. She slithers on to his lap from his shoulder and stomps all over him with tiny feet during the most sacred of times for most men, while reading the morning newspaper.

Not content with all this, she has unleashed attacks in the sanctum sanctorum of the Master, his room itself. I shall now proceed to paint a word picture of the attacks that happen there.

The pen stand is attacked and overpowered by pushing it off the study table; the bodies of the pens and pencils litter the floor of the room in a sorry spectacle. Every shoe in the shoe-stand is felled, the socks are chewed and chased in turns, all over the room, before being forced to accept defeat and surrender to the Mighty Nibbles. The dust bin is attacked with more vigor and none of the bits of papers in it are spared. They are pursued relentlessly round and round the room, aided and abetted by the ceiling fan, till exhausted, they flutter half-heartedly here and there. The wires are tentatively pulled at, sending the transistor on a suicidal mission off the table. The official papers on the table are eyed next, and that is when the L & M decides enough is enough. Just like how Goofy got an earful from the Master, Nibbles gets her share. She is chastised. But unlike Goofy who retired hurt to sulk royally behind the bushes, what Nibbles does is simply look back fearlessly at the L & M. Are you joining the game too, is writ large on her face as she watches him pick up all the fallen heroes on the floor and stacks them back in their place in the pen-stand/shoe stand respectively.

This was how things stood in our home when yesterday, the L & M walked in for breakfast with face downcast and told me,

“Tell them to send it over here.”

Well, I am not at my best early in the morning, have not been, ever since I discovered the internet. Cryptic statements that I would otherwise decipher in a jiffy, goes right above my head until and unless I have had my cup of chai. So I stared stupidly at the L & M.

“Tell the US to send it right over here!” There it was once again.

“Tell the US to send what??” I asked him. At my best or not, I like to get to the bottom of things. Why should US, if it’s the US I think it is he is referring to, be sending over to us anything at all?

“Tell them to send Irene over here. I’ll take Irene any day. They can have Nibbles in return.” said the much harried man.

Any takers from US? 😉

Note: As of now Nibbles has been missing since morning. I wonder if Uncle Sam has been eavesdropping and has something to do with her disappearance. On a serious note, we miss her awfully and hope we find her soon.  Or else I am done with kittens for a life time. Sigh! Who am I kidding? It will be probably only till the next time I see one and it looks at me and says meow.