Or Bata..

…no, I was not comparing shoe brands. I was referring to the most commonly used words in a virtual conversation, be it on instant messenger chats, over the phone, or nowadays, even on Orkut.

By the way, looking at how people use the Orkut scrapbook as a virtual chat room, Google has integrated Gtalk with it. I always thought Orkut was a great tool for social networking, but now its probably changed skin to social “chatworking”!

Anyways,coming to the point at hand, have you ever faced a situation when you were talking over the phone / chatting with somebody, you do not have much to say, the person at the other end too does not have much to talk about, and you keep exchanging pleasantries in the form of these 2 words – “Aur Bataa” ?

I have. Many times. Well, I am not much of a psycho-analyst in the field of social behaviour as far as the 2 sexes are concerned, but I guess it happens with most people who generally cannot do normal talk. I could have used the non-political phrase – small talk, but being the single gentleman I am, I do not want to offend the fairer sex. I cannot bear to be unfair to them.

However, I do not wish to come across as an MCP as well and will, with all fairness to the fairer sex, say that we men also indulge in small talk and gossip. But then, its a statistic that the average woman talks about 20,000 words daily, while a man only 7,000.
Now, you can do the calculations, but how much can one gossip in only 7,000 words?
On the other hand, does it mean that man is not the average human being..?…hmm…

Anyways, I have digressed again. Well, it so happened that at one of our tea sessions in the office, my friend and I were talking about this “chat characteristic”, and how difficult it can be to continue a conversation, especially when its not a close buddy of yours’.

Wouldn’t you feel like the lowest parasitic scum of the earth, when after an hour’s talk, which would (depending upon the gender of the person involved) typically range from getting to know each other’s diurnal activities and scheduled nocturnal activities, to analysing the latest fall-out of the Hrithik-Ash kissing scene, to discussing career, work and marriage plans, to talking about the latest gadget, to discussing the vital ‘statuses’ of the girl/guy-next-cubicle, to bitching about your manager, to deciding about the next booze session and so on, the person at the other end, without a care for human emotions, nonchalantly asks “Aur bataa” ??!!

It certainly gets me a little tensed, irritatingly amused, and totally bored (Yes! all 3)!! There could be quite a few reasons, the more prominent ones being:

  • I would have exhausted all that I wanted to say. But since the onus to continue the conversation is on me, I need to make use of whatever is left of my brains.
  • The person at the other end does not really care what I say as long as he/she can put the nail-polish properly or ogle at Pamela Anderson do her stuff on Baywatch!
  • The person does not really want to talk to me, but wants to carry on for courtesy reasons. However, at the first hint, such as “nothing much yaar”, you would hear a quick “bye” and a click.
  • The person REALLY wants to know everything about whats happening in my life. Which augurs well if the other person is of the fairer one . However, you can never really takpoint no. 2 and 3 out of the equation.

Of course, to make your life worse, “aur bataa” has different variants which can wreak havoc in these typical shapes and sizes.

  • Aur bol…
  • Aur bolo…
  • Kuchh Khaas..?
  • What else man..
  • And what else…
  • Aur..?
  • Aur batao…

Till date I have not been able to find a counter-strike which can throw the proverbial ball on to the other side of the court. It’s usually been a prolonged silence coupled with a blank look, or a delay in reply inviting a “Buzz!!” followed by a lame line ” oh sorry, got disconnected..” or the slightly encouraging “aahh…well…“.

But I was able to counter this once. I replied “Tu bataa yaar” with gusto, thinking that it would atleast put off the other person and would end the talk. The proverbial ball came at a speed which left me reeling! She replied ” arre yaar, we’ve been talking for the past one hour, I have told you everything and I cant talk anymore! Chal bye!” Click.

Justifying my name..

Ok, I admit. I read the sun-sign forecasts in the morning newspaper, but thats one of the many things I read when I am, in what I call the state of “extreme happiness tending to nirvana” (commonly referred to, by you common people, as “the loo”).

I normally don’t believe in Tarot cards, but could not resist from taking this test.
By the way, I found it quite eerie that the Tarot card coincided with the meaning of my name. I think I am an alien after all!!

Click here to find out what card you are.

You are The Hermit

Prudence, Caution, Deliberation.

The Hermit points to all things hidden, such as knowledge and inspiration,hidden enemies. The illumination is from within, and retirement from participation in current events.

The Hermit is a card of introspection, analysis and, well, virginity. You do not desire to socialize; the card indicates, instead, a desire for peace and solitude. You prefer to take the time to think, organize, ruminate, take stock. There may be feelings of frustration and discontent but these feelings eventually lead to enlightenment, illumination, clarity.

The Hermit represents a wise, inspirational person, friend, teacher, therapist. This a person who can shine a light on things that were previously mysterious and confusing.