Monday, September 14, 2009

Putting the 'Pool' in Car Pool

So - many years ago I had a roommate in grad school who like many desis before and after him multi tasked as a NFL coach, College football coach, President of USA, Supreme Court Chief Justice, Prime Minister of India, Sankaracharya, Expert in comparative religion and of course also spent few hours teaching undergrad kids MS Word for $1,100 per month. Typical of many desis of that time who hadn't touched a drop of alcohol or hadn't tasted egg until they landed in US, he'd fill his weekend nights with several rounds of 'chivas regal' and several plates of chicken. At the end of it, he'd develop sudden expertize to comment with absolute certainty on vegetarianism, the source/reason/state of religion, how stupid his parents-living-in India were and why he became N times more "fundoo" than them by simply stepping into the US soil etc ..etc.

So this boy within 1-month after landing did all the customary things: started referring to the state as "my state" the football team as "our team" and of course the country as "inga namma oor'la". He had to travel 30 miles once-every-week to do some team-based research for his professor. He did not own a car. The rest of his lab mates had a car and they took turns to car pool. The person who was chosen to drive that day picked my roomie up and dropped him back home. However, when he referred to these trips during the weekend, he'd say "I car pooled with my friends to go and do research for NASA". He didn't really own a car and was simply bumming a free ride. So for a while we were confused, thought he'd picked up the word "car pool" from somebody and really liked to use it. So we let him go. But he kept saying that again and again like "I didn't want David to car pool with us because David is so out of the way. But I am okay with it because it helps to discuss the project on the way". One day while he went on for the Nth time about car pooling, a drunk guy stopped him mid-sentence and asked him "dei nayee... ungitta car irukka da". Confused, our man says "No I don't have a car". Pat came the reply:

"appo mathavangellam car kondu varanga nee {refer_to_title_of_post} kondu poriya ?"

This Ghantaknaath must be very similar to my roommate. Look at him say this:

"Because I don't want a public option or any surrogate for it, which just puts the system in an even worse position than it is now.

But, if a public option is indeed passed, then I will be really pissed if it excludes end of life counseling or does not cover abortion expenses."

If I remember correctly, saar is on a F-1 visa. As part of the stipend rules and immigration rules, the university compulsorily withholds some money from his stipend to pay for his insurance. The university chooses his insurance provider. Even if he wanted to change his insurance provider, he has to work extra hard and convince quite a few people. Ivanukku indha altaapu thevaiyaa? 3 more years in F-1 + 9 years to a green card + 6 years to a citizenship. He is almost 2 decades away from having a say on such topics. Pammittu irukka vendiyadhu dhaane.

37 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hawkeye....gosh....give us a warning in future :-) I was sitting in a very boring mtng with some senior folks and couldn't stop laughing when I read this....

"appo mathavangellam car kondu varanga nee {refer_to_title_of_post} kondu poriya ?"

Needless to mention, I had a hard time explaining.

anyways, great timing and very well written...

Anonymous said...

//"appo mathavangellam car kondu varanga nee {refer_to_title_of_post} kondu poriya ?"//

Who is this guy? This was my thought exactly after reading the first two paras.. :-)

-Ganesh

Anonymous said...

I hate desis who despise our beloved cricket for sissy games like baseball..

-G

Anonymous said...

LOL. Intha indhi pasanga {refer_to_title_of_post} a vettina thaan ulagam urupadum.

Anonymous said...

I was laughing all the way on my drive back home from work recollecting this line...

"appo mathavangellam car kondu varanga nee {refer_to_title_of_post} kondu poriya ?"

the drunk fellow who said this is THEIVAM.

man...i'm still laughing as i type this....awesome. ROTFL.

MLC said...

ROTFL!!! @ "mathavangalaam car ...."

Anonymous said...

you rock..keep it going

Anonymous said...

aiyoo, free vidu. kaasa panama, why cant he have an opinion when our tea kadai kanthasamy has also an opinion on everything about america.

What is it with you and that fellow? the only time i read him is when you mention him.

There was nothing wrong in the carpool usage by the way.

Babs said...

vedu mapalai, avan avan-inuku thaani la kandam naa evan nu ku.....

Alan Smithee said...

Just two words for him -- locus standi. Lack of it has not stopped these guys from having an opinion. If I remember correctly, Sonia Faleiro's dog had a "vote for obama" sticker on its blog.

Gradwolf said...

Lol, I totally didn't get that gaurav sabnis post! But yeah, you should also talk about F1 bloggers who write about politics. All same case....

blackaccord said...

ROTFL... I didnt read the title first... Thanni adichaale idhellam appdiye varadhu thaan la??

Anon, reg baseball... I dont see a problem with that.. 10 years back there was no streaming of cricket on the net.. Not everyone was able to afford Dish network and the heavy subscription fees for live cricket.. the only way to follow it was on cricinfo.com.. For sports fanatics who are used to watching live cricket, Euro soccer or Formula 1, the only alternative to catch a live sport was to watch NBA or baseball or Football here.. I can't go and talk about Sachin's century with John and David at work. There are ppl who watch american sports so that they can be part of the sports talk at work.. and then there are ppl who are sports fans watching every sport passionately... baseball might be sissy to you but its america's favourite passtime and IMO a hardcore cricket fan would not despise cricket to watch baseball. He would rather watch both with his passion more towards cricket..

NEO said...

appo mathavangellam car kondu varanga nee {refer_to_title_of_post} kondu poriya ?"

I LAUGHED SO HARD..NAMMA PASANGALUKU THANNI ADICHA THAN THATHUVUAME VARUM...

WHOEVER SAID THAT GIVE MY HATS OFF TO HIM

NEO

blackaccord said...

hawkeye,
'Ghantaknaath' nna enna??

Idling in Top Gear said...

Brilliance on the part of the drunk friend. :)

Having been an undergrad in the US, I had the misfortune of enduring such characters for a full 4 years in college, especially the "hadn't touched a drop of alcohol or hadn't tasted egg until they landed in US.." and filling "his weekend nights with several rounds of 'chivas regal' and several plates of chicken" and "referring to the state as "my state" the football team as "our team" ." And such characters also engaged liberally in bashing GW Bush's idiocy while they themselves were battling to get a C+ at a tier 3 state college!

Coconut Chutney said...

piniteenga mamu! :D i literally rofl-ed. :D chancey no!

The Talkative Man said...

what to say... :P

I agree with Anon G@7:16:00 : I was on a 3 month trip on a B1 six years ago and was watching TV with another B1 who happened to land couple of months before me. The batter whacked one into the crowd and the guy jumped up and down shouting "HOME RUN RA!"...Just felt like grabbing his collar and yelling "Dei naye, nee idhuvaraikum sixer paathadhey illaya? India-la endha TV ad vandhaalum evanaachu six adikardhu dhaana kaatuvaan?!?"

Sreekrishnan said...

lol... I think entha oooru US la better nu paesaravanga kooda ithula included ...

i used to tell my frn " Pozhaikka vandha naiy ku enna enga ooru... moodittu kaasu sambathichutu KKNagar pakkam poi seru"

TTM said...

You got beaten!! I was reading this too..

http://community.codesmithtools.com/forums/p/10000/37140.aspx

TTM said...

Corrected Link

Anonymous said...

@blackaccord

I'm talking about the parupu sundaram desis who know zilch about cricket or any other sport, who have not played anything back home, come here and talk as if they are Tony La Russa or Bill Belichick.

Those are the ones i referred to.

-G

Anonymous said...

Hahah .. nice post again :D .. edo vandoma .. padichoma .. velai pathoma ponoma nu illama .. perusa vanduttanga .. inda maari naraya peru alanjundu irukkanga America la .. V well written :)

sozzler said...

wow.. lots of haters among your readers..WTF..

typical crab mentality..

there is this ANon guy who disses everyone who speaks about american sports and name drops bellichick and la russa.. nalla comedy pa

Anonymous said...

@ Sozzler

Go take your reading classes and come back here. I'm not dissing everyone who speaks about american sports, I'm dissing good for nothing people "parupu sundaram desis who know zilch about cricket or any other sport, who have not played anything back home, come here and talk as if they are Tony La Russa or Bill Belichick"

-G

blackaccord said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
blackaccord said...

Anon aka. G, your initial comment was not clear enough and hence my response.. Again we can't stop people from saying their opinions.. Opinions are like a$$holes.. yours works for you and mine works for me..

on a different note, hawkeye not sure if you came across this news.. For ppl who used to listen to Madras 'A' radio in the 80s, Indru oru thagaval 'Thenkachi swanithan' passed away..

http://beta.thehindu.com/news/states/tamil-nadu/article21162.ece

Maddy said...

I wonder what motivates the "hadn't touched a drop of alcohol or hadn't tasted egg until they landed in US.." guys turn "NORMAL" :-)

Gaurav said...

Hawkeye My Man!!! :)

Been a while since your attention drifted my way. I was starting to wonder if you have stopped reading my blog. Good to see you have not! I hope that the next such post will not make me wait as long as this one did.

Anyway, for what it's worth, I am on a green card, couple of years away from citizenship, and file taxes as a resident, not with the NR form. Not that it makes a difference. If I were on F-1, I'd still have made the post.

Anyway, let me know if you are coming to the East Coast some time. Would love to meet in person. Maybe we can talk about things over chivas regal and organic chicken. Met our common friend Anantha in Jersey a few months back. Hope to meet you soon as well.

Anonymous said...

@Gaurav

You could have saved some time by posting in ur original post that you are in GC. Shucks 28 comments wasted. :-)

-G.

Gaurav said...

LOL @ Anon/G. Maybe I should post all updates related to my immigration status on my blog.

But like I said, visa status doesn't matter. I'd have made the post even on F-1. Heck, I can make a few passionate posts on the problems with the Canadian and British healthcare systems or the German college subsidies, if that tickles Hawkeye.

sozzler said...

Annan Anon avargale, so you decide who is paruppu sundaram desis and who talks about Tony La Russa..
who died dude?

there is a clear hierarchy of abuse meted out to desis..

H1B desi disses F1.. GC desi disses H1B and the citizen desi GC desi.

Anonymous said...

@sozzler

Another one who needs reading skills. I said people who dont see sports back home and show off after coming here and think they are well versed in American sports.

Kurai Yeri Kozhi pidikka theriavathan vanam yeri vaikuntham ponanam..Those are the cases i'm refering to..

-G

ms said...

hawkeye, love reading your posts, man! my knowledge of tamil is restricted to yenna? va maa! always watch every tamil movie and simply beg my dvd guy for one with english subtitles. i am missing all the fun while trying to understand the comments. but, i will persevere, thanks to googletranslate!

Anonymous said...

@ms:
good luck translating "refer_to_title_of_post" in google translate :)

- Pradeep

Kokki Kumarru said...

Guess wat like many of the others here, even i felt to use the sentence similar to the way the drunken man told it after reading a few lines about car pool!!

Anonymous said...

B who made that comment Kau/SR. I know that guy that carpooled was b/o of mugraj.

Hawkeye said...

Kau and Kau only.