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I turned 37 this year.
Ok, it was last year. What are you, Sherlock Holmes?
Gosh, you guys, my birthday falls on 31st December, which totally rounds off to 1st January. Doesn’t it ?
So, I turned 37 at the v-e-r-y end of last year.
But like you really didn't think I was that old, right?
I mean I totally don't look it.
(Cue to friends and family that are reading this - Scroll down to the comments column below, copy - “Yo Su, I totally agree. You don't look a day older than when I saw you at 18” - and paste).
Well I don't feel much older either. I mean, maybe a little bit, and that’s only because some people insist on making me feel like that. Like when I was riding in the metro the other day and a 20 year old guy, I repeat a TWENTY year old guy, insisted on giving me his seat !. And no, I didn’t have a cast on my foot and nor was I looking pregnant.
(Note to self: D*** the Delhi pollution, I am n-e-v-e-r riding in the Metro again)
Well my excuse for not feeling that old is that I totally don't deserve to be 37, as yet. I mean, at 37 you MUST know some stuff, mature stuff, which in my case leaves a lot to be desired.
So I came up with a list of things I still don't know a thing about, with the hope of getting my act together before the impending 4-0 hits me.
KNOW HOW TO EAT HEALTHY
People my age, not just eat healthy (read frugal), but also use all opportunity to profess this newfound knowledge, to all and sundry. I am s-o-o-o-o not there yet. I can barely tell the difference between carbohydrates and proteins. Gluten free? Paleo? huh? See now you’re talking Greek to me. I eat everything and don't even feel remotely guilty about it ! That so counts for being reckless and young, right?
KNOW HOW NOT TO ENTER FOREVER 21
What? 30’s are the new 20’s. Haven’t you heard?
KNOW HOW TO DRIVE A CAR IN A FASHION THAT IS ACCEPTABLE TO SOCIETY AT LARGE
Lets just blame this one on my small town upbringing. There were no formal driving schools there. And yet, I have a license that allows me to drive, well…
A 4-wheeled private vehicle: TICK
A commercial truck: TICK
A 40-seater bus: TICK
A road roller (!!) : TICK
(Shhh, yes, I bribed the man at the license office and no, I’m not a danger to society)
KNOW HOW TO BEHAVE WHEN ONE HAS AN ACCIDENT (AND IT WAS TOTALLY MY FAULT)
Recently, at a busy traffic light, I hit the stagnant car in front. Oh don’t you judge. Have you ever tried pulling out your sunglasses from your bag, lying in the rear seat, while simultaneously trying to avoid eye contact with the poor beggar who thinks you are scrambling for your bag to give him something? Well, don't try, because it may end up with you moving your foot from the brakes and hitting the poor guy’s car in front, and then probably not knowing how to react. So I got out and tried to apologize, (I am a girl of manners, you see) only to realize that the traffic light had turned green and I probably should have moved my car instead. But I just stood there apologizing then to all those that passed me. And very surprisingly, it didn’t make them very happy. Can you imagine?
KNOW HOW TO BEHAVE WHEN ONE HAS AN ACCIDENT (AND IT REALLY WASN’T MY FAULT, NOT EVEN A TEENY TINY BIT)
What I should have known is that one doesn’t just get out of the car to understand what happened.
See, I didn’t know that.
What I probably should also have known is that you don’t chase the man down if he tries to get away.
I didn’t know that either.
What I definitely should have known is, what to do, once I had managed to chase him down.
But I didn’t !!
So I drove like a lunatic, (I think my license also says, “Can drive like a lunatic around town: TICK”) and just stood there, wondering what to say to him, and finally said “hello”, at which point, he just drove away, without even saying a “hello back”. Yet again, can you imagine?
KNOW HOW TO GRACIOUSLY TIP AND NOT BE ALL AWKWARD AND SHAKE HANDS INSTEAD
I just never get this. Most hotels now expect you to leave your gratuity in a sealed envelope at the end of your stay. You can totally thank me for this. I totally inspired them. It was because they saw me struggle, every single time.
I’m still trying to grapple with this at salons though. But the hairdressers these days don't look like they are going to be impressed with the pittance I plan to leave any ways. So instead, I buy whatever hair goo they suggest, because, well, I’m not mature enough to say, “No, Thank you”.
KNOW HOW TO WEAR LIPSTICK
Don’t laugh. It’s apparently a thing adults do.
KNOW HOW TO TALK TO SOMEBODY WHO DOESN'T KNOW YOU, BUT YOU KNOW THEM (DON'T ASK HOW)
I introduce myself, then struggle to think what I should say next, then try and act oh-so-cool, then fumble, then get nervous, then ask them a question that reveals that I have totally been stalking them on Facebook!
KNOW HOW TO GRACIOUSLY ACCEPT COMPLIMENTS FROM BOYS/MEN
Yes, this one is a wee bit embarrassing and let us call this an “all-girls-boarding-school-syndrome”. But really, I go shy, then turn as pink as my “wheatish” complexion would allow, then become all 18 year old coy, then simply weird and high pitched. Yes, I am clearly not 37 ( Told ya, Now you believe me ?)
KNOW HOW TO BUY FRUIT
I religiously make my trips to the fruit shop. I poke all the mangoes, I smell the melons, I move all the peaches upside down (and destroy the neat display), I enthusiastically check bunches of grapes one after another, but in all honesty I have absolutely no clue what I’m meant to be looking for !
KNOW HOW NOT TO CRY
I don't mean not to cry in real situations. I need to learn not to cry during Jim Carrey movies, at random commercials, at children performing (and I don't even know these children), at dog videos or simply when I’m hungry. See mature adults don't do that. They go to the kitchen and fix themselves a meal instead, which brings me to the next one.
KNOW HOW TO COOK
I make killer Maggi (yes, I follow the news, and yes, I know it could possibly be harmful, but, but, but-t-t-t its MAGGI, people. Have you no emotion?) But to be 40 and not know how to toss a healthy meal for your family, well not so cool.
So, while I work on this list and prepare myself to graciously hit the big 4-0, do keep this as a secret, all of you, and till then let’s just simply pretend I haven’t quite turned 37, because I clearly don’t deserve to have. Not as yet.