Oct 28, 2008

Gate Crashers

(Here's the script I used for Project 6 of Toastmasters at the Chennai Covansys Toastmasters Club [CCTM]. Won the Best Speaker prize for this one too :-). Do read through and leave me your valuable comments.)
Has any one ever gate crashed a wedding reception???
Something I thought could be very exciting!!!

Our lecturer for Operations Research Madam Phansalkar’s son was getting married that day. My batchmate Prashant was also a faculty for undergraduate courses in our college. Phansalkar Madam had sent an invitation to Prashant for her son’s wedding that day.

That day was a usual day at college. Lectures were over and we were lazing around in the canteen over poha and chai. Prashant too was there with us. He read out the invitation … ‘You are cordially invited with family and friends…’

Now, when you are away from home for a long time, things like good food, dressing up, mingling with guys other than your boring batchmates are things that turn you on... ‘Cordially invited with family and friends’ struck the same chord among all 10 of us.

Prashant called out… 'Those who want to come for the reception, please raise your hands'... (the professor effect :P). Shamelessly I raised my hand… then I saw 9 other shameless people around me.

My friend Shagufta, a typical tomboy, and a total extrovert did the head count aloud. Prashant was visibly baffled; he was just being formal... Shagufta was just being normal!!!

Poor Prashant had to maintain that friendly gesture and said 'Yes yes... why not' and turned to the rest of us... one by one people started making excuses and began dropping out.

I badly needed a feast. Shagufta had been away from home for her graduation as well. Probably that made her hungrier for good food. She gave me the sternest look and said… 'Priya... you are not dropping out... We'll just be eating a tiny portion of the food from soooo much food... wont harm anyone'. I was game and thought it will be fun to try out. Gate crashing was something I always wanted to do. I accepted.

She gave the pleading 'please don’t drop out' look to another close friend Jay. Guess what… boys always agree and so did Jay.

Finally we got ready by around 6.00 pm and headed to Jay's house. We could hear sounds from inside his place...
'Oh no!!’
'Aah that looks better'...
Shagufta and I thought Jay was definitely deciding what he should wear!!

We rang the bell... and banged the door... Jay called from inside... 'Come in... Door is open'. We went in to see him playing some super fast car game on his PC - dressed in shorts and a tee shirt!!! We were irritated!!!

Shagufta switched off the PC and in her usual tone said... 'Jayy... chalna nahi hai kya' which means don’t we have to leave now?

Only then did Jay actually notice us. After all boys will be boys… switch off the TV or PC… only then their minds open up. He pushed back the chair and sprang up the moment he saw us... to him we were overly dressed for a usual evening - he least expected that we would actually dare to barge into the reception… uninvited.

Jay tried the ‘hurt the ego’ stunt on me. 'Priya!!! I never expected this from you...class topper doing such things just doesn’t suit you'. Shagufta came to my rescue... 'Jay, good food is waiting for us... but its not waiting for us forever... are you coming... now!!!' I stood there smiling at him with a 'serves you right' look.

We helped him find something to wear. Actually to make sure we don’t look overly dressed we dug out his most ethnic kurta and made him decide on that.

Jay is someone who was very conscious about his looks.
He looked at the kurta and at then at us… 'Are you girls sure I should wear this?'
Shagufta said 'Of course yes Jay... simple yet elegant'.
'Absolutely... all the girls at the reception would go crazy over you', I added.
That did it. Jay was ready in a minute and we were out with Prashant in the next 5 minutes.

Seeing only three of us, Prashant looked a lot more relieved than in the morning. He got the company he wanted instead of the crowd!!! Prashant called for an auto and gave Phansalkar Ma’am’s residence address.

We reached her house… but there was no activity. It was dark and quiet… no sign of celebration… no sign of food!!! And it was not April First. Only then it struck us that receptions are not normally held at people's homes. In all the excitement and enthusiasm, we did not read the venue details on the invite... 'Cordially invited with family and friends' did not let us look beyond.

The boys were embarrassed. Shagufta was angry… may have been hungry too. I was lost. Prashant rushed to the security guard to find out where the reception was happening. It was happening at a hall just behind Jay's house. Jay could not hold back his anger. We could not hold back our laughter. Jay sighed 'Aaah!!! Too much', Prashant the perfect host said... 'Come on let’s rush no more delay'... Shagufta promptly agreed with a 'Yes yes!!!'... I was more practical... 'Bhaiya, Shivaji Nagar'... I called out for an auto.

We finally reached the hall and stepped in. The big fans at the entrance, the red carpet, the potted plants along the walk way, food counters visible at a distance - this was the wedding venue!!!
The strong scented air that the fan blew on our faces shook us up... Shagufta and I exchanged looks - guilt struck both of us - but it was too late... Jay was already prancing around the hall in his new kurta and Prashant was mingling with the other faculty members... we had been abandoned!! Shagufta and I were embarrassed – now!!! After a couple of moments both of us exchanged looks again – as if telling each other - 'Big Deal!!'. We started having a good time - pulling Jay's leg, checking out the other guests, what the others were wearing etc.

After a while, our course coordinator walked in. We began hiding ourselves behind each other, in the process revealing all 3 of us. Sir smiled at us and spoke very normally. Some other staff members were also sweet enough to speak to us. We are sure... behind those smiles they were thinking... 'How come these people are here’?

Finally the inevitable happened. Phansalkar Ma’am spotted us. She saw our pink faces and tried to calm us down... "I'm sooo happy you'll came for the wedding... Don’t you'll leave without eating" she said pulling my cheeks like a typical aunty. "Tell her that's exactly why we're here' Shagufta whispered in my ear... I was confused how to react... and simply nodded. Prashant and a couple of other staff members were laughing at us for the rest of the evening.

Finally after all this, we headed to the food counter... and ate to our fullest. We were so shameless we did not even wish the couple, nor did we present them anything. We just ate and ate and ate.

The next day at college was good fun. We told long stories about our act of bravery. Our batch mates realized we were lying when we skipped Operations Research lectures for the rest of the term.

(PS: We never dared to tell Phansalkar Ma'am that the food was simply mouth-watering at the reception... Ma'am if you happen to read this... I'll be happy the message got conveyed :) Prashant thanks so much for reading out the invite that day... and Jay and Shagufta... a big thank you to both of you for matching my Shamelessness Quotient :P)


Mayank October 28, 2008 at 4:07 PM  

He he..ha ha ..ho ho ho...

Too gud...just reminded me of good old days :-)

I just loved it.. specially the part when you guys realized that the reception is happening near Jay's PG.

I could actually imagine the expression on Jay's face.

Priya October 28, 2008 at 4:16 PM  

Thanks Mayank for that prompt comment... :)

Glad you liked it... and guess wot... Jay's expression was exactly like you imagined :P

venkateshwaran October 28, 2008 at 6:16 PM  

nani shall i call phanslakar madam and ask her to read it ? I still have her number

Priya October 28, 2008 at 6:31 PM  

@venky - u can go ahead n tell her... :) OR is history now :))

ma'am will finally get to know how innocent we kids were.... n that we just wanted to give prashant some company :))

Nautankey October 28, 2008 at 10:29 PM  

Well written..err spoken..how many aahs and pauses? :P

Used the speech to advertise urself as the class topper too..nice idea I say :)

Prasita October 29, 2008 at 8:20 AM  

:) the naughty side of Priya...super coool!

Priya October 29, 2008 at 9:14 AM  

@prasi... thanks a ton :)

@nautankey... 0 aah's 0 pauses 0 fillers and used the WOTD once... :) hmmm... thanks for the comment....

Gaurav November 3, 2008 at 9:22 PM  

That was very interesting... probably this is the first time i have read someone's blog entry completly :)
the best and the most correct part you caught about guy's in your words ---

"After all boys will be boys… switch off the TV or PC… only then their minds open up."

I could actually associate myself with the same (me being with the TV or PC and my mom dad getting no responses from me)

great blogging keep it up,...

I will surely come back to read more,,, probably inspire me to actually start writing on my own blog :))

Priya November 4, 2008 at 11:08 AM  

@gaurav - thanks for those comments...

darril November 5, 2008 at 1:02 PM  

Hi Priya,
I remember the days, which i did the same in my college days....
The way u have written is amazing, i felt like one of u in the group while reading this...
Great! keep it up..

Bhavik and Minal November 17, 2008 at 10:35 PM  

This morning i was feeling very bored. Just read this article and I am good to start with work. Its very well written maja agaya. Just reminded me all the places where we all use to stay. Jay PG yours and mine. I really miss our college days.

Priya November 18, 2008 at 10:20 AM  

@darill - thanks so much for the comment and am happy there are more n more gate crashers like my frens n me :)

@minal - guess all of us miss times at symbi... i'm happy am able to write stuff that helps all of us recollect all the fun moments that we had together... thanx for the comment :)

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