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One evening about three months back, I was rolling out rotis for dinner. When I put the last one on the tawa, the efficient time-saver that I aim to be, I started clearing the kitchen platform even as one side of the roti was getting done. The rolling pin and board went into the sink. But I had put the board face down. Nope, that’s not the way. With my right hand closing the tap (multi-tasking, multi-tasking!), I picked up the board with my left hand and flipped it the right way up …….and got the shock of my life.

Well. Flipping boards right way up is nothing unusual. We, who toil in the kitchen, do stuff like that day in and day out without a second thought. In fact I must have done it a couple of hundred times at least. And yet, that particular day, I had almost jumped out of my skin doing the same mundane task. So intense had been the pain I felt – like being poked with a red hot skewer – on the inner side of my right forearm. When I glanced down at my arm there was an angry red welt about three inches long and half an inch broad.

How the heck had that happened? The L&M was sitting glued to the television in the front hall and Luci was by his side. Apart from myself, there was no one in the kitchen.

Sigh. I’ll tell you how it happened. In my left hand I was still holding the flat ladle used for making the rotis, which ladle moments before had been in direct contact with the gas flame. When I flipped the board, I had inadvertently brought down the hot ladle hard on my right forearm. In short, I had well and truly branded myself. Three months gone I still have a mark to show that stupidity is certainly not finite in this world.

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former


© Shail Mohan 2019