Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Weird Things

My everyday train travel has led to several observations on the peculiar habits of people travelling by train.

On top of every seat there is a small slit, just wide enough to slide a paper. What passengers do is they just keep their tickets or passes on the slit (for e.g you would keep your ticket on the slit on the seat before you). The conductor won't disturb you if he sees a pass in that place. If he sees a ticket he will take it out, punch it and then keep it back in the slit. There is an option to buy the train ticket from the conductor as opposed to the station itself. Given the way I time catching the train until the last minute - I always buy the ticket from the conductor. After paying the money, he'd take the ticket punch it, ignore my outstreched hand and keep the ticket on the slit in front of my seat. I'd sit there with a confused look.

Also, I noticed, he has a gun holster like thing around his waist. It has three or four cylinder like things hanging from the holster. Each cylinder houses a particular denomination of coins. So if he has to give me 90 cents change back, he would press the cyclinder that houses quarters (4 annas) 3 times, dime cylinder once and the 5 cent cylinder once. Voila! - I have my change. He is like a mobile coin vending machine. The ticket is also uncomplicated - he just needs to punch on a generic ticket the zones I am covered for. Ofcourse our PTC bus drivers have their own system of rupee notes in fingers, pen behind ears, and coins in the bag kind of thing going on. But I couldn't help thinking that this holster might be a good idea for them. Its so effecient, if they have a generic ticket, they can get rid of the bag and just walk around like a western hero with a holster. They will be like the 'meanest ticketman from the west' who draws change faster than John Wayne or Clint Eastwood .

Tag Time:

Sudipta has tagged me and asked me to name 5 weird things about myself. I am not sure if I can name 5 but I'll try.

1) During school, university exams, I had this habit of putting margins on every paper before I start reading the question paper. So the moment the answer sheet is given, I *have* to draw margins for all the pages in the main sheet. I will not look at the question paper before that. For most of the exams during my 12 STD Board exam, the question paper was given immediately after the answer paper. While, all other students quickly started looking at the question paper, I patiently drew vertical left-side margins on all pages, drew the horizontal margin on the top of the front page, and wrote the date before looking at the question paper. I Did this till my 8th semester.

2) If the house has marble mosaic floor, I can't step on the boundry of 2 mosaic tiles. I would carefully step on the center of every tile. If it happened to be a multi-colored tile floor, I'd just go crazy. I couldn't believe when I saw 'as good as it gets'. Thats me. Thats exactly me. In our house in Vellore, the house had black and white tiles. I was learning chess then. I'd imagine I was a bishop and only walk diagonally. It drove everybody nuts. Also while walking on road pavements. I can't step on the boundary of pavement tiles. I have to time my walk such that my right leg crosses into the new pavement tile without touching the boundary. Needless to say I have a habit of putting my right foot first into any room/train/bus I walk - but then again I guess this is not so uncommon.

3) If I am in the car back seat. I'd like to sit diagonally from the driver.

4) When I increase or decrease volume/color/contrast on TV, radio etc. I will set the volume to an even number. Not an odd number. It drives me crazy if the volume/color remains at an odd number if I am visiting a friends house and he changes volume.

5) My temple habits. The less said about it the better. But seriously, prostrating in the temple, in areas beyond/after-crossing the Dwajya Sthambam is so against temple etiquette. Please don't do it. My grandparents unfortunately taught me this when I was a child and it always bugs me when I saw people falling down in arbitrary places. I get so distracted. Especially in Thirupathi right outside the golden temple. There is a reson why Dwajya Sthambam & Garuda (the gap is bigger in thirupathi) is kept near the entrance. C'mon you have decided to go to the temple. Do it right. - anyway you now know why this falls under weird stuff about me.

I am not tagging anyone, but I will just throw open the comment section for people to write their own 5 weird things. If you like, you can write it in your blog and let me know. I'll update it here. Thanks Sudipta for tagging me :-)

14 comments:

Nilu said...

many of us have the habit of not stepping on boundaries of tiles. it is very natural - especially for someone who took a basic course in Functions, Limits and Continuity.

Anonymous said...

5/5! Only difference being I ll patiently write my name, roll number, date, etc.. on the answer sheet and then look at the Q paper.
I also get really jumpy if someone walks in between the Garbagraham and the Nandhi. I always walk around the Nandhi to go to the other side!
I have this even number thing for many a stuff. But I ve consciosly tried to get rid off it a it started driving me nuts!
Guess nobody is uniquely weird in this world! :)
-Boo.

Anonymous said...

BTW, its WEIRD not WIERD! Weird, huh?! :)
- Boo.

Hawkeye said...

boo,

u havent seen my disclaimer item #14? :-) i'll let it be :-)

Hawkeye said...

nilu,

especially for someone who took a basic course in Functions, Limits and Continuity.

:-)

but i do understand that nobody is uniquely weird in this world

tilotamma said...

OMG, moving diagonally like a bishop across those b&w tiles, that has to be the most annoying thing :-))

Anonymous said...

5 wierd things:
1. Observing the registration numbers of all the vehicles before me and counting the total and then doing some calculations with those numbers in my brain till i reach my destiantion.
2. Almost always thinking about death......just to be smiling when it comes to me :)
3 ...........
4 ................
5......................

tried hard ... but i am not that wierd i guess .. may be i am half dead.

~sriki123

Anonymous said...

only 1 wierd thing: reading this blog. haha

curiouscutie said...

Not stepping on boundary is big with me as well. When the tile size is close to my foot size, I get pretty worked up.

When i walk with someone on the road, I beat myself to match the leg (when they step right leg, I do right). I hate it when they don't help me... although I don't ask them.

If I go to a place where I would use my right hand for eating (usually indian restaurants), I wash my hand before I leave and hope/wish that I don't meet anyone the way so that I avoid handshake... I exercise various tricks to guarantee that the first thing my hand touches is my food.

I never switch off the last light before going to bed. When I am by myself, I leave one light on allnight, usually not the one close to where I sleep.

I read newspaper/news books from back to front.

-cc

The Desi Nole said...

Here is my list
http://desinole.com/2006/06/5_weird_things_about_me_1.html

Jace said...

2) If the house has marble mosaic floor, I can't step on the boundry of 2 mosaic tiles. I would carefully step on the center of every tile.

Woah! That's exactly what I used to do. It drove me crazy. After a while, I had to force myself to step exactly in the wrong places and feel the pain, hoping to break the habit. It wouldn't. It finally died when we moved to a place with very large floor tiles and no clear delineations.

Anonymous said...

pompous nilu - idhu romba too much a theriyala unakku? ;-)

i did none of those fancy courses but have the habit and i bet there are many more like me.

hawkeye - guilty of four. since i do not visit temples escaped from the last one
but can add quite a few to the list like putting odd number of spoons of sugar, salt etc in my food.

fire eater

dangit said...

Oh my God. 5 on 5 . you could be describing me!!

Anonymous said...

When I increase or decrease volume/color/contrast on TV, radio etc. I will set the volume to an even number. Not an odd number. It drives me crazy if the volume/color remains at an odd number if I am visiting a friends house and he changes volume.

Same Pinch!!