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I feel good. Not that I actually feel good. I feel terrible in fact. I just feel good that I found the right word for exactly how I feel….fey. Websters defines ‘fey’ as….

1. Feeling unreal, weird, otherworldly.

2. Being in unnaturally high spirits, a state of mind that is thought to immediately follow devastating news.

I think I’m feeling all these and more. For the first time, I am not feeling naturally horny. I am tempted to think that if at this very minute, Scarlett Johanssen appeared in a negligée and beckoned to me, I’d….well…maybe say something like,’ Bitiya rani, kitni bari ho gai ho….’ and shake my head gravely like A.K.Hangal. And just leave it at that.

Okay, I’m just kidding, trying to laugh off what happened to me today. I’m doing that all the time. The grimmer life gets, the funnier everything seems to me. Makes sense? No? There, I told you its weird, this feeling.

This afternoon, for the first time in my life I felt not wanted.

I had applied for an internal job posting in our engine testing area, a pretty plum kind of environment.

The engine testing area is where it all comes together. The jet engine that is so painstakingly built and assembled by hand with myriads of components, is finally tested in a special sound-proofed test cell. You stand right outside while a test at full power is on and you’ll just hear a low muted whine, that too if you listen very carefully.

The written exam was a breeze and so was the practical test and I believe, so was the interview. I made him laf. Thats a sure sign you’ve passed an interview. That was last Friday. This morning the head of the cell called me over, sat me down and straight off the bat, asked me a question,” Tell me something, Ashoot. Ashoot is it? Can I call you Ashoot?” I said go ahead.

“If you were recruiting, would you hire someone who is 58?” He paused for effect and continued,” or would you take on someone younger even if he doesn’t happen to be as highly qualified? And if he is promising, you could then mold him to suit your requirements?” An image of a lump of playdo with a masters degree, being molded by this guy’s chubby fingers, flashed in front of my eyes. I did what any sane guy would do under the circumstances. I giggled.

“Whats funny?” he demanded, probably wondering why I wasn’t upset at his question. I don’t like this guy at all.

” Its nothing, something stuck in my throat….and you were saying?” I cleared my throat to stop myself from any further giggling. That’s something you have ta learn about giggling. If you want to stop it, just cough or clear your throat repeatedly. It works.

He had already made up his mind. I had done well in the exams and I could create problems for him if I was overlooked outright. I could demand a review and our levels of transparency would ensure that he would have to reveal all details, explain and perhaps face the possibility of being told that he was wrong or even worse, that he had discriminated (given my skin color). That would be disastrous for his career.

He was therefore making an appeal. Lay off this job, he was saying to me. I tried to hide my feelings, kept my nonchalance on and replied,” Of course, I’d go for the younger guy anytime.”

I walked out of the room, feeling strangely calm, though there was a persistent pulsating in my eardrums and my ear lobes felt hot. I tried to take in a deep breath but it caught, impeded by the tears that made my eyes smart. It wasn’t because I didn’t get the job. It was because for the first time I felt discarded. My time was over.

So the fey feeling.

No sweat. I’m right now in the ‘unnaturally-high-spirits phase’ as explained in the Websters definition. I’ve just met a young Belgian woman named Stella. Stella Artois. She’s slim, cool and intoxicating. I’m performing on her with my lips, draining her steadily. I’m in no hurry. Stella has five willing sisters. They all came for just eleven ninee-nine, taxes extra.

See? Its easy to bounce back if you’re a naturally horn…I mean, happy guy.