Rebeccus Farcis

Rebeccus Farcis means "Have Fun", in err.. the yet to be discovered Martian.

The Art of Eating

with 11 comments

For someone who’s lived in a quite a few places in India, so much so that he is confused of his own identity, food has never been a problem. Anything certified vegetarian and edible was what he called food. Also, for someone who looks as if he’s been famished all his life, he always put it diplomatically ‘we eat to live’, read, eately barely enough to live.

Presumptions and firm beliefs of this order continued in his crazed mind until the final few days of his rather unhappily extended stay in Chennai. A few doubts started creeping in his mind when the once fine neighbour of his started growing along the 3 perpendicular axes, in not exactly the right proportions. The Y-axis (height) never grew more than an inch, however, the other two axes (waistline and tummy, for dummies) had swollen to the dimensions, justly comparable to those of a healthy baby elephant. ‘Pizza’, was what the response he received, for his polite inquiries. ‘Pizza with cheese bust’, on further inquiry. Life then, still was, ‘we eat to live’, only, this one being a real jalsa for a life.

Domicile changed to Mumbai, three days into this place, all such beliefs were shattered. Apparently, food was something else. There was more to food than eating bits of it just to make keep a metabolic rate on the other side of a perpetual comatose sleep. Food was more than water. Water you drank to sustain life; and this life you spent eating. You ate four square meals a day, chomped royally on assorted snacks between these meals. And all of this was considered normal. Apparently, food habits across the nation differ, this was only one of them.

There are large swathes in the country, the populace of which subscribes to the thought that the honorable spud is the quintessence of life. At the going rate, can anticipate elections being fought and governments being toppled over the price of this dear tuber. Add it to the other lifeline, that silly spoilt milk suspension condensate they call paneer. Someone confiscate these two from the market, I can foresee a cataclysm much worse than the one a certain Andrew Strauss has been privileged to see in Bangalore.

Then there are people who would qualify to be the perfect antithesis of yours’ truly, a ‘pure non-vegetarian’. These folks have a small filter just behind their thyroids which effectively screens them from swallowing any food not remotely non-vegetarian. These true ‘carnivores’ marvel at the sustenance of the general public whom they classify as ‘herbivores’. I mean, ‘how can one live without meat?’. The styles differ. There is this set of population that swears by a certain tooth – the sweet one. They tend to prepare their food a little on the sweeter side. They tend to make this goo, slightly yellow in colour, thick, sauced with a few cut tomatoes, and jaggery 10 times quantity of tomatoes. Jaggery also finds a pride of place in their dining table, with half a kilo of it decorating each plate.

Another set of population practices the opposite. They tend to have a certain strange preparation akin to the dear gunpowder on their table. A general rule running across that region is that you add half a kilo green chillies, another half a kilo red chili powder for every 1 kilo food you prepare. That doesn’t suffice, so they consume their food chomping on a green chilli simultaneously. There is another set of junta that swears by the butter floating atop the paratha, one that swears by the ghee floating atop their bhati. Another by the fish they consume 17 times a day: during every meal, and between any two of these meals. Amid all this, one invariably tends to admire that one popuation that swears by satvik bhojan.

There are ones with scary food habits – an apple in the morning, one plaintain for lunch, a little herbal tea in the evening and perhaps a few oranges for dinner! The perennial ‘dietians’ – the ones who ‘breakfast like a king, lunch like a pauper and dine like a slave’ (this is a diet tip a dear friend tries very hard to follow). On the other end of the spectrum, you have the kings; the junkies, the folks who swear by junk, all senses of a firm diet plan evaporated on the sight of anything junk and can digest that trash thrice a day.

Sure Mumbai has been an eye-opener. There have been multiple attempts by the not-exactly-dishonorable roommate and neighbours of dragging this blessed soul into this magical world of eating – only, they’ve never quite managed to.

P.S. The above words are the rumblings of a deeply frustrated heart, one that’s been beating faster by the day, these past few days, longing for that one food that it believes will satiate its soul. Read, mom’s food.

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Written by Srinivas

March 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

11 Responses

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  1. was this an RC passage from CAT ? dude u sure write complex articles… 🙂

    209

    March 5, 2011 at 4:03 pm

    • Ravi, I’ll send it across to the authorities in IIM-A! 😉

      Srinivas

      March 6, 2011 at 6:00 am

  2. Welcome back buddy!! Awesome read…I never miss your posts buddy(a reason might be bcos u write o scarcely!! ;))
    Or maybe cos you write so well…I know this ‘friendly request’ would go unheard due to your supposedly hectic schedule/life @PARTY(or something rhyming with that…oops..NITIE): Please write often…I just love them…not only me, i guess…people love them…we love them. 😀
    Coming back to the post…you covered all the varieties perfectly!! I guess I’ll fall into 2-3 categories…the chilli one, the trash one, the pure non veg one…yeah..that’s it!! 😀

    Tonmoy

    March 5, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    • Tonmoy,

      Never realized that NITIE rhymed with PARTY! Thanks for that info bro! 😉

      Is it only my presumption that you are a Bong! You must fall into one more category, technically speaking! 😉

      Srinivas

      March 6, 2011 at 6:01 am

  3. Ah! That last line abt mom’s food, had me too longing for it. Sigh!
    Nice post buddy. As long as you don’t cultivate any of those scary food habits and are able to maintain at least that famished frame of yours, I guess you’ll be fine. 🙂
    Keep writing!

    Aishwarya

    March 5, 2011 at 10:03 pm

    • Thanks Kozhi! 🙂

      Srinivas

      March 6, 2011 at 6:03 am

  4. i really hope the phrase “pizza with CHEESE BUST” was a typo.
    either ways, the unintended pun sounds delicious to me

    hantan

    March 6, 2011 at 5:51 am

    • Hantan,

      Wonder why do people always take the wrong connotation. 😉 Blame it on Rio? I mean… well.. blame it on Mumbai? Blame it on … whatever! 🙂

      Srinivas

      March 6, 2011 at 6:05 am

  5. and i hate this article for one reason: no mention about those who swear by the Dosa.. how can you miss it man? just how.. you didnt do justice to the art of eating 😛

    hantan

    March 6, 2011 at 5:52 am

    • The article was written on observations (of a few folks around me who errr.. ‘love’ to eat, I guess you get my hints).

      Was so engrossed in my these observations that I overlooked my own fetish for the beloved dosa! Yeah.. my mistake! Should’ve written about the art of eating a masala dosa with a fork and spoon! 😀

      Srinivas

      March 6, 2011 at 6:10 am

  6. Awesome! Loved the way you’ve covered ALL the kind of people 🙂

    I loved what you called Paneer :p

    Pooja

    March 7, 2011 at 9:01 am


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