The Quirky Life of P

Humor and satire revolving around Mr P- a fictional mix of an avatar of Mr Bean and the veritable Bertram Wooster of Wodehouse fame.

Archive for the month “November, 2014”

Jalfrezie for Thanksgiving…

Never Too Late: Is there a person you should’ve thanked, but never had the chance? Is there someone who helped you along the way without even realizing it? Here’s your chance to express your belated gratitude.- Daily Prompt

P on the phone: “Hey Sis? How are things?”

Sis: “I’m all right P. What is it this time? You have to be quick. I am about to go shopping”.

P: “It’s nothing. I just wanted to call you and see how you were and…”

Sis: “P, get to the point, I’m in a hurry.”

P: “Well, I just finished making a vegetable Jalfrezie to go with my rice and ‘Sookha rotis’, like what you made for last Thanksgiving, and I followed your instructions exactly… but it does not taste the same like what you make…”

Sis: “So then, could you tell me what you did exactly?”

P: “I’ll read out what I had written down from your instructions…”

P proceeds to read out the recipe from the piece of paper:

“Recipe for vegetable Jalfrezie

2 tbsp oil , 1/2 tsp cumin seeds, 1/2 cup onion-chopped fine, 500 gm mixed vegetables-cut chunky, 10 shallots-peeled and halved, 1/4 cup tomato puree,1 tsp ginger paste, 1 tsp garlic paste, 1 tbsp green chillies-chopped fine , 1 1/2 tsp kashmiri chilli powder, a pinch of garam masala, 2 tomatoes-cut into cubes, coriander leaves-to garnish.
Heat oil and add the cumin seeds, Mix in the chopped onions and sauté till light brown,
Mix in the vegetables, shallots, tomato puree, ginger-garlic paste, green chillies, and chilli powder; Cook vegetables for ten minutes, Add tomato cubes, and cook for another 5 minutes, Stir, sprinkle a pinch of garam masala and cook for about 5 minutes and serve garnished with the coriander leaves.”

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Sis: “That sounds all right to me, except that there is no mention of salt…

P: “Oh, should I have added salt? You didn’t tell me that!”

Sis: “I am sure I said salt to taste… Unless you did take it literally and tasted some salt…”

P sheepishly: “Could be… could be… Can I add the salt now? I suppose it is never too late?”

Sis: “You can add the salt now, never too late unless you have finished eating the dish I guess, but the vegetables will not absorb it as well as when it is added while they are being cooked… Anyways, the dish would taste better with some salt even if it is added now.”

P: “OK then. Bye…”

Sis:  “Bye”

The phone was put down at the other end and then P realised he had forgotten something…

He called her up again and she picked up the phone.

Sis: “What is it now P?”

P: “I just wanted to say thank you. I wanted to thank you when I was over there yesterday at Thanksgiving but it slipped off my mind… I guess it is never too late to let you know how much I appreciate all your help and advices and for putting up with me.”

Sis: “P my dear brother, you don’t have to put into words all your feelings… It’s always written all over your face! I love you for all your quirks!”

P: “Thank you sis! I love you too… And before you go for shopping can you come on Skype and take me through how I can make some ‘Sookha rotis’ to go with the Jalfrezie please?..”

It was too late for P as the phone then was switched off on the other end.

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Never Too Late

Murder on the train

Overheard: This week’s writing challenge revolves around eavesdropping.

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P had been ill at ease with the night travel by train in India, especially when he did not get tickets for the air-conditioned compartment and had to travel second class with the windows left open to counter the heat. It was not helpful that only the previous day, he had watched the film ‘Madras mail’, which was about a murder on a train. Tired, he had however nodded off and was woken as the train jerked to a stop at a station.  As he lay there with his eyes still shut, slowly drifting off to sleep, he was jolted by the sound of a slap. He kept his eyes closed and listened…

Child’s voice: “Kill him, mummy, Kill him!”

Woman’s whisper: “Hush! I don’t want you to wake up everybody on the train!”

Through half-opened eyes, P slowly peeped at the family of three on the opposite berth, travelling in the same cubicle. The dim light was still turned on and he could discern the figure of the man slouching by the window, probably fast asleep.

The woman was now looming over the husband with her hand slightly raised as the tot stood by her side, anxiously whispering “Get him mummy, get him!”…

P was shocked to hear the child say those words… He couldn’t believe a child could be so evil!… But then he remembered the famous film, “Omen” and he shuddered.New Picture (19)

The woman was now leaning towards her husband and as her raised hand came down in a slap, P cringed and shut his eyes…

Child’s voice: “Did you kill him?”

Man’s voice: “What the…?”

Child’s voice: “Did he escape again?”

Woman’s voice: “Yes, Dennis. And stop calling the mosquito “him” and “he”. It is an “it”…

P breathed a sigh of relief…

The woman was trying to kill a mosquito… and not her husband!

Unless of course, by the term “mosquito”, she was alluding to her husband…

 

 

 

Be kind to humanity…

Cue the Violins: If your life were a movie, what would its soundtrack be like? What songs, instrumental pieces, and other sound effects would be featured on the official soundtrack album?- Daily Prompt

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New Picture (15)It’s a pain that the music that P plays,

On his violin on his most happy days,

Is a cacophony of howls and brays,

And if he sings along, the music frays

Your nerves, you pull your hair in a craze!

 

On sad days it’s like a banshee’s wail,

The noise drills your eardrums like a nail,

Chills in your spine will put malaria to the pale,

It makes the neighbourhood rail.

P even gets threats in his mail!

 

New Picture (14)In summer if you open your window,

To let in the breeze and some air flow,

A headache will soon hit your brow,

In the simmering heat like another blow,

As the violin practice proceeds, its intensity will grow.

 

In the monsoon, muffling the thunder and rain,

With off-key notes so loud, even earplugs are in vain;

P’s violin drives everybody insane;

Even the cat next door rolls in pain.

So folks, P’s music in your movie will be your bane!

 

If any one’s life were a movie

Please let the background music be

Anything other than what P

Plays on his violin, in gloom or glee.

Do be kind to humanity!New Picture (17)

From Caterpillar to Butterfly…

Salad Days: Is there a period in your own personal life that you think of as the good old days? Tell us a story about those innocent and/or exciting times (or lack thereof).- Daily Prompt

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P was reminiscing on

His salad days gone by,

And how like a caterpillar

That morphed into a butterfly,

From a carefree and spritely tot,

He had now grown to a man.

 

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Those balmy days he didn’t have to worry

For food on his table, and he voraciously ate

The meat, eggs, potatoes, and anything sweet,

But he fretted about salads on his plate,

As he dreaded the thought to eat or meet

A caterpillar hiding in the greens… he shuddered at the fate!

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Home run…

 

New Picture (7)Golden Key You’ve been given a key that can open one building, room, locker, or box to which you don’t normally have access. How do you use it, and why?- Daily Prompt

WordPress would you kindly

Give P a key that need not be

Golden or that opens the gates

To heavens or bank vaults

Or secret doors and boxes of treasures.

 

Many a time P gets himself

Locked out when he forgets

To have his house key with him

The door then shuts and auto locks

And he is left out stranded.

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He needs a key that magically

Appears in his hands

Every time this happens.

He just needs it to enter his home

Without calling a locksmith each time.

It’s such a drain on his wallet!

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(See earlier post P becomes listless…https://avatarofmrbean.wordpress.com/2014/06/01/p-becomes-listless/)

 

 

P.S. And he would certainly appreciate a key that opens the door to eternal happiness too! That would surely be a home run!

A stone that could melt your heart

By Hand What’s the best present you’ve ever received that was handmade by the giver, not store-bought? Tell us what made it so special.- Daily Prompt

 

P was looking after Dennis, his neighbours’ little boy, again that Friday as they went on some urgent errands.

Dennis: “Mr P, why don’t you have any pets?”

P: “I’d like to have a cat or dog as a pet Dennis, but you see, I’m only renting this house and the landlord had insisted on no pets.”

Dennis: “Not even some gold-fish?”

P:  “Goldfish may not be a problem to the landlord. I did try keeping goldfish, but they all died on me… You know I’m so quirky, I don’t want to have pets that will die on me. I hated pets dying on me when I was a kid”…

And P changed the subject with some talk about cartoons and football…

The next day, was a Saturday and P was hoping to devote it fully to some reading, TV watching and general lazing about. As soon as he finished his brunch, he was about to go back to bed with a book when he heard a small knock on his door. P went and opened it to see Dennis there, with a small cardboard box.

Dennis: “Mr P, I have brought you a pet…”

P: “Oh Dennis, you should not have… I can’t keep a mouse or a small animal… I may not be able to look after it well and it may soon die…

Dennis: “Don’t worry Mr P, this pet won’t die… You won’t even have to feed it or wash it”

P was curious. He took the box from Dennis and opened it…

A pair of painted eyes looked at him from the box…

Dennis: “It is a pet rock, Mr P. I made him for you.”

Pet rock

The little boy had taken a grey, flattened, oblong shaped rock and had painted a face on it and made it colourful with some spots of paint.  P was touched. He realised that even stones could melt his heart. His Adam’s apple wobbled as he tried to control his emotions.

Dennis: “Can we build a pet rock house for him today and then he can bring Mrs Pet Rock and their children too?”…

That was the end of P’s lazy Saturday…

That bright, crispy morning…

Trio no. 4 Today you can write about anything, in whatever genre or form, but your post must include a speeding car, a phone call, and a crisp, bright morning. (Wildcard: you can swap any of the above for a good joke.) – Daily Prompt

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The air was chilly and crisp but it was a bright morning.  Winter was over and nature seemed to revel as sunlight danced on the leaves in the trees, and bounced off from the windscreen as P drove in his shiny red car. He had an hour to get to the meeting that Chris had arranged with a prospective employer. There was plenty of time and P had decided to take the long, scenic drive to get to his destination. P was in a reverie, listening to Hariharan’s ‘Walking in the moonlight’…

The shrill ringing tones of his phone brought him back to the sunny morning from walking in the moonlight and listening to the raindrops… He stopped the car at the kerb and answered the call. It was his neighbour, Chris…

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Chris: “Where the hell are you?”

P: “Driving to Glenelg. Did you forget about the meeting you had arranged?”

Chris: “I haven’t forgotten about the meeting, but I think you have. John rang me just now, saying he had waited for you for twenty minutes and that you haven’t turned up…”

P: “Well, the meeting is only at 9 am and I am on my way. Should be there in another forty minutes”

Chris: “The meeting WAS at 9 am and it is now twenty minutes past nine! Did you adjust your clock last night?”

P: “You mean, set my alarm? Of course I did and that’s why I am well on time now.”

Chris: “You are not well on time. You are late! I was talking about changing the day light savings time!”

A flabbergasted P realised that he had not changed the clock the previous night and he was late for his interview! “Day light savings” had not crossed his mind as he had wondered at how the morning had seemed to be sunny and bright, despite the chilly, crispness in the air.

A squirrel that had wandered down to the kerb, was frightened to scurry up the nearby jacaranda tree, as P revved up his engines and his car sped towards Glenelg…

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