Other Side of the Mirror: When Cupid comes calling
By : Bikram Vohra
My friend is 57 and one of those types who does 100 push ups before breakfast and eats nails for lunch, jogs ten klicks and is a man’s man, all up close and personal.
Now, he has gone and fallen in love. This chap, who once broke a fellow’s jaw in three places for merely looking at his girlfriend has now become a wet.
He invited me to meet her. To his place, for dinner. Pleasant lady, won’t set any river on fire but OK-kkkay, no sweat. He’s looking at her adoringly.
She paints, he says, his voice choked with emotion.
And she sings, he simpers, you have to hear her sing.
She’s changed my life, he sighs, I don’t know how I lived these years without her.
Thought it would be indiscreet to remind him he did very well, thank you very much, with all those girlfriends and wild parties and candles burning at both ends.
My life was a lonely planet, he says, now the sun has come out and I feel fulfilled, there is meaning where once there was nothing. He glares at me for confirmation.
This is the same man who could keep the party going till the sun came up.
Now he is drooling like a Labrador. With the same puppy eyes.
I say, I can see that, I can see that being about the most eloquent thing I can say if a guy is going all gaga in front of you.
She cooks, too, he says, wait till you have dinner, can I get you another drinky -winky with some icy wicey, my little myanh-wynah.
I look at him in horror. He didn’t just say that.
Mynah-Wynah picks up the ditty and says, no my daring-waring, I am appy-wappy, I’ll just go checky-wecky the din-din.
As she leaves, he says, isn’t she awesome?
I sort of nod dumbly.
She’s a bit like Aishwarya Rai, he says, from certain angles, don’t you think, with a touch of Jennifer Aniston, especially when she smiles, did you notice it?
If you say so, I say, really, I am so pleased for you.
Pleased, he says, pleased, here I am pierced by Cupid’s arrow, hit by the thunderbolt, and you are pleased, people are pleased when they get a borrowed DVD back without scratches, this is monumental, this is like Aphrodite took the whole week off especially for me and you are pleased, what sort of friend are you?
She comes back into the room and he says, just telling Bix here that you are my little Aphrodite.
She giggles and squirms.
He says, and my Venus.
She squirms some more.
I watch in awe.
She picks up a canapé and hovers it near his mouth like a chopper waiting for clearance. He dutifully open his mouth and makes a sort of engine sound.
He bites her finger.
She says, notty-wotty you bitty-witty me.
Don’t do it, I think, don’t say it, remember when we were young, remember the good days, remember the guy whose jaw you broke, do not kiss it okay.
He says, here let me kissy-wissy it OK and he pulls her hand.
She gives a high-pitched squeal of delight and tries to pull back. He won’t let her hand go. They conduct this little cameo tug o’ war which he has to let her win but not without a good fight and it matters not a whit that I am witness to this tribute to not so young love, actually, they seem to have forgotten my presence completely.
Finally he let’s go and she says, IwonIwonIwon and he looks at her admiringly, his eyes shining with pride, like she had just won the Oscar or the Pulitzer.
She’s so strong, he says, isn’t she? He looks at me for endorsement.
I say, sure, very, like real strong, that was impressive, no really it was, never seen anything like it.
And that’s the truth.