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Check point

[This is a ridiculous story]

Cheat codes!
Everything has cheat codes. Sure, even this situation would have a chit code. Only if I knew.

In our deliriously celebratory mood on the occasion of the end of another work week, we had set out about on town. In our dreamy eyes we saw ourselves burning the dance floors, riding the Janpath like a boss and dining at the choicest of tables in the Capital. Naive that we were, we ended up spending most of our time stuck in traffic on NH8. Which essentially meant quick dine & having to leave back for home un-drunk, un-danced, un-delirious.
It was 1 A.M. on a Friday night. As we approached Gurgaon, we saw barricades on the road at a distance. It was the usual police checks at night, nothing out of ordinary. The traffic goes slow, some turn back, some shake hands.
As we approached the barricade though, we saw a bright white light being flashed intermittently towards the car at the barricade. Apart from the usual police people, we saw some other officious dorks shuffling around busily. They were wearing white over-coats.. those typical evil-lab-scientist-coats. There was a large screen at one side of a van. Every time the white light flashed, a red, green and white mess of an image would come up on the screen. Some of the people in cars were hauled out after the image flashed and a stick was jabbed into their mouths. The white light was too bright, so we couldn't see faces of either the people in lab-coats nor the people being hauled. But every time the stick was thrust into the mouth, the person would vanish slowly inside the large van standing solidly beneath the flyover. 
I was cursing myself, why did we not take the flyover...
And then it was us at the check point. I was frantically thinking for a possible cheat code, a possible phone number to dial, possible excuse... but didn't know what for. We were not drunk. We didn't know what the dorks were testing people for, and what those sticks were for. 
I rolled down car window and asked the police what the matter was. Instead of answering me, he motioned the guy in lab-coats to examine me. For the first time in my life, I felt like I would much rather deal with the cop. It felt like 'the close encounter of the third kind'. It was unnaturally chilly and the place was illuminated strangely with sharp long shadows and bright blind spots. A lab-coat came by my window. His face was completely dark, as he obstructed the light. But his square thick glass rims shone mysteriously. There was a dull green shadow beneath the frame of the eye-ware, and it moved ever so imperceptibly.. it was as if the glasses were some sentient scanners. 
A chill went down my spine. 
The lab-coat barked, "is your mouth really healthy?"
I went WTF o_O, "excuse me?"
He looked past me. He wasn't a person at all. He was from some other planet. He continued in a monotone with blank face... "healthy mouth germ build-up se free hota hai. Lets check." and thrust his hand inside the car, around my collar. He yanked me out of the car and thrust a glowing tooth brush in my mouth. It all happened so suddenly that I was absolutely paralysed. I didn't know what to do, what to say. My friends were undergoing similar trauma. We were all alone with our fates hanging by our teeth.
The screens flashed picture of our teeth (i think. I had never seen them before on large screen, so no way to know really) The lab-coat then hauled me inside the van and shut the door. He pulled out a small vacuum cleaner from one of the corners and jabbed it inside my mouth. I was regaining my senses by this time. I struggled and spat out the silly contraption and hit the lab-coat in his nuts. As he doubled over, I opened the van and jumped out. An alien rage took over me. I felt like the hulk (except for the going green and powerful and large and clotheless part). I do not remember much, but I remember the sound of vans unlocked by me and more lab-coat nuts being impaired for ever. At the end of the rage filled destruction, I think I threw that vacuum cleaner thingie onto the large screen. It blew up in quite a handsome show of fireworks and bang bang.
It was at this point that I thought to myself, "hmm.. crazy shit!" and the hulk in me left this planet along with the lab-coats.
I could see the police now acting normally and shaking hands unnecessarily with a lot of people. I got into our car, slipped a Gandhi paper into a policeman's hand (more out of habit, that anything else) and left.
Ever since, I have felt a change inside me. A small change, but bothersome nevertheless. I brush now thrice on Fridays.

Comments

Aparna said…
??? i should like to see that!!! (u brushing on fridays thrice - would you do it all at once - brush 3 times one after the other OR 2 times in the morning and once at night OR once in the morning and 2 times consecutively before sleeping OR once in the morning, once when u reach home and once before going to sleep (given there is considerable gap between coming home and sleeping) OR are we going to be entertained by a perfectly awesome image of you brushing at your office desk/washroom :)

you know as I was reading it - it came to me that the Colgate Total ads probably took their inspiration from alcohol testers :P
Ajinkya said…
i know!
i am pretty sure that the idea for the ad came from a CD who was stopped by police to check if he was drunk or not, on the way to the client meeting. pakka.

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Ctrl-tab
Ctrl-tab...
Scroll Scroll Scoll..
Alt-tab
Alt-tab...
Catch yourself slipping away.

Deep  breath. 

Close the browser. silence the mobile and turn it away.

Open an offline-real-paper diary. Stop your thighs from lolling impatiently. Stay still. 

Pick up a pen awkwardly. ahh, the fingers are stiff. It will take a  while for them to get used to holding a pen. Quick finger exercise - open the palm, stretch finger outwards, close into a fist, dig the fingers in. Repeat.
Ok now.. about to pick up the pen again, but eyes dart towards the screen. Tempted to check email.

Shut up. The last consequential email came two months ago. Nothing of consequence is online.

Pick up the pen. Don't fetishize the object now. Get on with it. Put it on paper, write a word and start it already. If I get to a sentence, perhaps I will get into a flow and won't have to look up from the paper at all. 

One sentence later.

Ahh. That was good. I am feeling good about myself. The sentence makes sense. …