Watch the road ahead

Late at night, it was pouring rain while I cycled back home. From the main road, I had to make a turn to my house, while no vehicle comes from the opposite direction. I saw this one guy, on the bike who was coming out of the road I had to go into. He waved in my direction and signalled that I can come. I thought to myself, ‘What a nice gesture!’

I cross, and suddenly this car, coming from the same side I was coming, going to the same side I was going, races past me and speeds ahead. “Hey, Asshole!” I yelled. But it was too late. He had driven past and gone too far. It was also raining remember. I yelled, right when I was crossing the guy on the bike who facing the opposite direction.

I keep cycling with my raincoat almost being a hinderance. I hear a bike approaching me. Soon enough the bike guy cuts me off and stops me in the middle of the road, removes his helmet and asks, “what did you say?”

I said, “Hey, that was not for you. I said, Hey Asshole! to the guy who drove past me, almost knocking me over.”

He said “Oh! Really?”

He takes his phone out, makes a call and says, “There’s some dude here calling you an asshole….Yeah. Come back. I’ve got him”

I was taken aback. I kept looking at the guy, preplexed that wondering what are the chances.
The car comes back. The driver gets down from the car and I got the shock of my life.

They were twins…

This story is almost true.

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Raise Gentlemen

Dear Son,

You will not abuse power. Your ego is not bound to your manhood. When the time is right, you will have the urge to have sex. It’s something you shouldn’t be ashamed about. But you will not put your pride on the fact that you had sex at a certain point in your life.
Establishing dominance, cat calling and pride in being able to have sex when the other person isn’t ready or has said has nothing to do with you being a man. Understand chivalry. Understand that the more you believe in the fact that having sex or losing your virginity has nothing to do with your dignity.

You will not put your ego, on the line. Firstly, try not to have an ego. But if I mess up as a parent and you end up having an ego, keep it to yourself. Don’t take it out and whip it around. There is no mid way to being a gentleman. I’ll repeat that, son.
There is no mid way to being a gentleman. You will honour the fact that the girl you are with has said no and not take that for granted.

Don’t do it, son. Don’t listen to the voice of ego and assume that it’s only fair because you feel entitled. You are not entitled to anything. I hope this is the second and last line that I have to repeat. You are not entitled to anything!
Man up, walk away and let me not hear about even one incident of any violence of personal space, both physical and mental.

You’ll fall while learning about life and your self-confidence should probably be there throughout your life. But don’t prove it, you don’t have to show anyone that you are able to. Believe in yourself. Don’t be pathetic.

Now before I go on ranting about the incidents that triggered this letter, I better stop. I’m sure you’ll have tools to find out about it. So one last time… You are not entitled to anything. You believe in yourself and don’t have your ego on the line at any point. Be a gentleman. If I’m going to be drinking when you read this, let’s have some alcohol, else a cup of chai for me and let’s talk…

Regards,
Papa

On the bright side…

It’s been a year of stupidity, mistakes, and some wonderful experiences.
Of meeting new people, learning so much.
Of watching wonderful movies, discovering masterful artists.
Of laughing at the younger version of me who was such a doofus.

It’s been a year of all this….

Hosting a Game Show where I played Dumb Charades and Pictionary with contestants. Thank you to Beam It Live team with which I had such a good time for 6 months. I made some dumb mistakes. I learnt so much about being presentable and about having fun on camera. That sounds so rehearsed. Even calling that sounds a little rehearsed.
Started the year in Goa, where I performed at a wedding for the first time.
Performing on a bus, on the way to Coorg for a few doctors Thanks to Vibrant Holiday Destinations. It was one the weirdest, yet rewarding experiences I’ve had.
Performing at a venue where I get picked up and thrown off stage by a drunk heckler. (I was startled.)
Joining and working with Improv Comedy Bangalore and experiencing being there without any net supporting improvisers on stage learning how to try to be honest and not trying to be funny.
Performing in a Comedy Club where, people come and watch Stand Up in Mumbai.
Performing for 400 people in Mumbai, twice in the same night, Thanks to Kenny Sebastian.
Performing in a Comedy Festival in another city, where the comics are a very close-knit group.
Travelling to Goa for Improv and spending time on the beach with the team.
This year the number of people trying comedy has gone up by a huge number in Bangalore. Performing in various venues in Bangalore and other cities is something I’m thankful for and am looking forward to as well.
All in all a year with so many wonderful moments.
Even though there have been differences, and we having to lose so many great artists in the world, 2016, you’ve been fairly kind and generous to me.
Thank you and Here’s celebrating the last day of the year.

PS:- There are more than the five thumbnails of movies and comics and books that I watched and enjoyed, presently those are the ones that came to my mind. Tig Notaro, Whiplash, La La Land, Buster Keaton and Animal Farm

Cheers!

Happy New Year Folks!

What was the first question that was ever asked in the English Language?

How to attempt to grab the attention of as many minds as you possibly can?
When’s the last time you saw a gentleman?
What would you say to someone if they offered to dance along with you?
Why isn’t there more mindless walking in the city?
Who would you call at 5 in the morning to have a cup of chai and talk your heart out?

How to try and sustain attention, without letting more people leave than there are, still reading?
When do you realise that the person you’re sitting and talking to isn’t going to be the one?
What can you tell yourself about that person that makes them someone special, but not special enough?
Why do we find out that the person is not the one, only after it’s a tad bit too late?
Who do you call and confide in when you break the code?

How to keep people wondering what these questions are about?
When did this become a series of questions that intend to break the fourth wall?
What can you possibly be thinking about that can successfully take this forward?
Why can’t I sleep at night without having questions bother me?
Who can you point out to have no secrets at all?

How to put an end to all of this?
When is the right time to make your own decisions?
What can you tell about your life that’s worth sharing?
Why can’t I have more time with you?
Who am I and what I doing reading this.

Answer any three of these questions and write them to me, or talk to me about anything that you’d want to talk about.
We can then all decide that chai is the intermediary solution to all our problems.

“And we are ready for Take Off” – Alarm

I woke up in an empty hall that has two huge windows facing the rear end of the HAL Airport.

I mentioned rear end because all the fighter jets and flights would take off and would go in the opposite direction.
I would wake up at 3 in the afternoon, go for lunch and come back in time to have tea.
Sitting on a chair at the balcony of the 2nd floor, looking out into the airport while the sun sets, while there’s rain pouring down or all through the night has been one of the most relaxing experiences.
I remember, ours was the top most floor in the building. I had access to the terrace. Standing at the terrace felt good too.
I had only an i pod with me that had the most popular songs of that time that I would listen to while looking out into this vast land.

Sometimes I would be forced to wake up at ten in the morning, after a night shift that got over just three hours ago, because of a flight that’s about to take off. It would wake me up with so much velocity that I would the first memory of waking up being having my ears ringing and wondering where was I. The take off of a fighter jet was my alarm.

I remember celebrating the 2011 World Cup that India brought back after 28 years, in that house and it felt like we were all celebrating in unison.

I miss that house. I have some amazing memories in that house. We used to play cricket indoors with a smiley ball. I had access to the company swimming pool and table tennis court.

Now that I think of it, it feels like it hasn’t been too long ago.

I went back to sleep.

Being Goofy! Anonymously.

Dear Shunky,

This is your inner voice, or maybe it’s just you and you’re trying to make this sound like a deeper conversation than it is. Nonetheless, here are few lessons on my mind today.

Being goofy and stupid can’t ever be not on the table.
If there’s a point where you’re not goofy, you should look forward to the next time you get to be goofy.
So don’t ever stop being stupid. Forget the facts and remember the feelings.
There’s value to be taken in Anonymity.
Being not famous for doing something. I don’t find it particularly but there is value to it.
There’s also a certain drive in Naivety.
Not knowing how good you are, or just how bad you are can sometimes keep you going as long as you want to put yesterday’s work to shame.
There’s the thing! You know, the thing. Writing, playing a sport, a long drive and then there’s the idea of that thing.
What’s it like to write? What’s it like to be a writer?

Deep down, doing that one thing means everything.
Not being known for doing that one thing.
Just doing that one thing.
Fame, is enjoyable, is lucrative and is always desired but not the objective of doing that thing.
Maybe only once you reach being truly famous can you say this line.
Like they say, Money isn’t everything but you need to make enough to be able to say it.

Now stop conning people reading this, that the inner voice told you to write this. You’ve already used a wallpaper to conning them to coming on to this page.

This is you.
Plain stupid you.
So get some sleep you freak!

Unwanted hype to make a point…

Have you ever began reading a paragraph and made up your mind about what the write up is about. There’s a comedy fest happening and I would want to make a point but my point isn’t too strong. So here’s the deal, I’m going to write about the comics that are going to be there at this fest. Some of them I have no clue about. ┬áLets see how this goes.

Aakash Mehta – He can seamlessly mix Gujarati and English. His videos are evident of it.
Aamer Peeran – Tesla. Goes with his gut and goes big. Tough looking soft guy.
Abbas Momim – I’ve met him just once and he seems to be the guy who knows about the right things happening in Comedy. Or that should happen, ideally.
Aditya Shridhar – Comedy Nerd and knows who were the greats.
Ahmad Ashik – Milke Khushi Hogi, I hope.
Ahmed Shariff – New Shariff in Town. Strong Views. He can get your attention and hold it just with the audibility of his voice.
Ajay Samson – Feel good guy who is insane with voices and characters while doing his stand up.
Alick Bailey – I will look forward to meeting you, Alick.
Anand Rathnam – Confident, thinker and always fun to have chai with.
Angad Singh Ranyal – Kaun Nahi Jaanta. Satsriyakal.
Anurag Godugu – Let’s see how this goes.
Anusha Choudhary – Hi, I’m Shunky Chugani.
Arun Govada – Grounded, visionary and super supportive for the comics around him and also for comics in other cities.
Ashwin Alphonso – Hi man! What’s up?
Ashwin Nair – Super sweet guy. Eager to learn. Once he introduced me on stage as Classical, Freestyle Zumba Dancer.
Atul Khatri – The first comic that I met and spoke with after his show who suggested to watch every comic and see and learn all the time.
Avinash Agarwal – Phir milenge Zaroor.
Avinash Ghosh – You meet him at a coffee shop and it will seem that he is the owner of the coffee shop. Something that’s very authoritative about him.
Azeem Banatwala – Super Computer with Algorithms always being updated, in the context of Comedy.
Bhavneet Singh – This guy is crazy cool to hang out with and we could talk for hours. Before one of us would fall asleep out of dehydration. It’s never happened, although it can.
Brian Aylward – Looking forward.
Chirag Panjwani – The only other Sindhi Comic who is as short as I am.
Danish Sait – The one and only. Kaun Nahi Jaanta!
Darius Sunawala – Everytime Darius is in the house there can’t be a dull moment. Each time I meet him, the conversation has been memorable.
Dattaprasad Godbole – I’ve envied guys like Dattaprasad who understand and very well know what they are talking about. One of the intelligent comics.
Deepak Chandran – Milenge!
Diptarko Ghosh – He’s funny when sober and fun when he’s had a drink or two.
Hriday Ranjan – Smart bhoy.
Jinx Yeo – I’m glad I got shortlisted for Masala Mayhem Comedy Fest.
Kanan Gill – Invests in the conversation that he has with you and super fun to hang out with when not being mobbed after a show.
Kaneez Surka – Improv ki Mallika.
Kjeld Sreshth – Mera dost, Mera bhai. One of the guys who if you make him laugh, his laugh will make you feel good. (Try it!)
Kritarth Srinivasan – A force to reckon with. The most common line we use is, Tu Best Hai.
Kunal Rao – The conversations we’ve had whenever I’ve met Kunal has been helpful in writing.
Mahesh Bolisetti – He knows Magic and he is someone you should dance with after a show.
Manas Tayal – Namaste!
Max Mystel – I’m already intimidated by the name.
Mayank Parakh – We shall talk soon.
Mukesh Manjunath – When he has his nights you will remember the guy, super sweet and maaza aata baat karne main.
Naveed Mahbub – I would have remembered if we would have had a conversation.
Naveen Richard – One of the most committed and well defined comics. He will surprise you. Even though you think you know him, he will surprise you.
Navin Kumar – Somoene who is super comfortable about who he is and always is looking ahead of the curve.
Neelaksh Mathur – Well behaved guy who is super comfortable on stage and talks to you whole heartedly.
Nishant Suri – Animated on stage and someone who lives up to the name of Suri Sahab ka ladka.
Nishant Tanwar – One of the first live stand up comics I watched.
Nitin Gupta – His name precedes him.
Pooja Vijay Ramamurthi – Someone I met a long time ago at an open mic in the audience when she got up on stage she got everyone. I was pleasantly surprised.
Praveen Kumar – Prolific, mentor and one of the sweetest people you’ll meet in any walk of life.
Pushkar Bendre – Hi there!
Rahul Dua – Hello to you too..
Rajashekhar Mamidanna – Bade Bhiya. He’s so pleasant to hang around and watch. He’s like a chacha ji that I’d like to meet.
Rohan Dias – He’s ekdum jhakaas and is super smart.
Rohit Swain – He looks like he made it to the state level cricket team. Each time I met him the thought came to me.
Rueben Kaduskar – Someone who I met just once and is super accomodative.
S Aravind – Prolific and macha…
Saad Khan – I’ve never had a word with him so far.
Sahil Shah – Kaun nahi Jaanta inko.
Saikiran Rayaprolu – Very hardworking and presentable on stage.
Sandesh Johnny – Ek baar bhi mulakaat nahi hui.
Sanjay Manaktala – A mentor, your story about Bill Cosby can’t be forgotten by me.
Sapan Verma – Kaun Nahi Jaanta. Lekin Sapan Verma, mujhe nahi jaanta
Sejal Bhat – Dark Comic. You think she’ll say something nice and she comes up with something that leaves your jaw open.
Shadab Aziz – Very Freindly Guy. We had a Bangalore Vs Hyderabad comedy show off and they played really well.
Shrirupa Sengupta – She has the hands of maturity and the voice of a child and the eyes of a Bengalan
Shunky Chugani – Kaun hai yeh!
Shyam Tenali – Trying hard not to do a reference to a comic book that I read in my teens. You know what I’m talking about.
Siddharth Banerjee – Very Witty writer and super helpful to the comics around him.
Sneha Suhas – She’s Bangalore’s very own diva.
Somanath Padhy – One of the best guys to hang out with for writing. Epic burn moments keep happening around him.
Sonali Thakker – Met a few times, watched her on TV and bas utna hi.
Sorabh Pant – I’ve watched him, admired his energy and bought his book. Not in that order.
Suhas Navrathna – One of the strong solid comics that takes stage and keeps the audience’s attention.
Suman Kumar – Author, Writer, Photographer, Stay at Home Dad and super expressive.
Sumit Anand – I’m sure if we were in the school, he’d bully me but banda accha hai.
Sumukhi Suresh – Kya bataun? Inke baare main toh you know better.
Sundeep Rao – A beast of a man on stage and on the prowl off stage.
Toby Thomas – Is baar zaroor milengey
Umesh Somani – Someone who looks like he fluctutates between, don’t mess with me and I’m jolly good ji.
Utsav Chakraborty – There isn’t a dull moment if this person is in the vicinity. Ekdum Paagal hai
V Shridhar – Smart Word Play and Plays with Smart Words.
Vamsidhar Bhogaraju – The most expressive funny guy on stage, when he is on stage. Actor and brilliant with characters.
Vasu Primlani – Aware about the environment and pretty honest about what she feels. Muh pe bold deti hai.
Vikram Poddar – Intellecual conversations are in order and his humor goes across corporate borders. (Yeah!)
Vivek Muralidharan – Good host for a party. The go to guy when he’s incharge and super fun.
Yash Bajaj – Is baar kuch toh hoga….

Over 80 Comedians.
Over 16 Days.
Masala Mayhem Comedy Festival
Get your tickets now! http://www.masalamayhem.com/buytickets