Wheezed to college. Had to get my marksheet attested and submit it, or else they threatened to kick me out. J n Squee were doing class, so, wandered about the campus aimlessly for a while. Went to the library to return Tennyson's "In Memoriam", which I never read. I have a 90 paise fine!! It's absurd, I can't borrow any books until I drag myself to the Central Library and stand in an unending queue in the heat, to pay 90 PAISE!!!!!! Went to the Head to get my attestation.
Head (looking stern): Attestation? What for? (looking hopeful) Are you planning to leave us?
I (a trifle hurted): No Sir, we were supposed to submit a copy of our marksheet to the office.
H (grim): The last date for that was a fortnight ago.
I (apalled he hadn't noticed): But Sir! Look ! ! !
H (impatient): At what?
I (frantic): Me! ! I've been so ill! Very, gravely, ill. I haven't been attending classes, you know, that's how sick I've been.
H (muttering incoherently under breath, signing xeroxed marksheet helplessly): gngh .. never atten .... etc.
Poor man, he needs to de-stress.
J and Squee came out of class and gave me steely glints, as if to say, "You stayed in the luxury of your cool, cool home, while We had to do classes all week. You're not one of us suffering proletariat anymore." All this after I had condescended to carry a particularly voluminous edition of "Bleak House" for them! Just imagine, in my condition! On top of that, they hadn't got their own marksheets, so now I have to wait till Monday to submit mine, as it is we're so very late. I put it down in writing today: J and Squee will be held responsible if I am denied a Master's degree for late submission of my undergrad marksheet.
Went to the canteen in an attempt at reconciliation, but the three of us glared at the floor, looking very glum, for a long time. I wanted to discuss my lachrymose laryngitis with them, but I don't think they'd understand.
The canteen is teeming with highstrung first years, these days. They yelp and run around, showing their navels and discussing men. Or Bob Dylan. I'm very fond of such things, but they could keep it down, sometimes, you know.
When my late friends decided to snub me, as well as each other, by each taking out a book and reading, I decided I'd had enough of my outing for the day, and proceeded to leave.
Got onto an auto with this boy who was lip-syncing and head-banging, possibly to some form of acid rock. He looked like a ferocious punk, and writhed and contorted his upper torso as we sped on. I snarled in encouragement. Then our nonagenarian autowallah lit a beedi and embarked on some motor madness.
I was glad to get off. As I was plodding towards home, who should I meet, but this old acquaintance, whom I barely know [we used to have a crush on the same neighbourhood loser as pre-adolescents. I think we spent a week walking by the dude's house together - every evening.] She's doing media studies from an obscure college in England, after having crawled somehow out of school. She's big, and pretty, and has the hugest breasts I have ever seen. This is what she had to say:-
Booby von Trapp (chirpily): Hey gal! Long long long! Say, what's with all this? What, huh? Kya yaar, I mean to say?
I (smiling weakly): Hi, are you on vacation? The orange highlights suit you.
BvT: Yeah, but Coo! What's with YOU, gul? What's with the yellow skin, the dead eyes! Where's the shine, gal?!?! Where's the GLAZE??!! I mean, no make--up and awl! Are you going political? Radical? Say!
I (wanting to say): Ailing homo sapiens aren't supposed to look like luxury sedans, with shine and glaze. (actually saying, apologetically): Yes, I know, I've been ill, and haven't had the energy to use papaya scrub on my face.
We gibbered inconsequentially for some time, before I wrung myself off her.
The whole world is becoming inexplicably punk. I think I'm ageing.