Wednesday, August 17, 2005



Snippets from conversations overheard due to an irresistible urge to be a nosey parker.

While walking home from work:
An undergraduate (freshman or sophomore) couple are talking to another couple of undergrads on the pavement. Said one of them to the others, “Would you guys like to come up to see our disgustingly filthy room? I think it’s really cool.”

Now, I understand that I’m not getting any younger, and my teenage years are a memory, but even though some of us had pretty filthy hostel rooms, we never went out of our way to invite people to view our living conditions.

Can some of this blog’s readers (who are still in college) enlighten me about such modern ideas?

At the airport.

Two portly middle-aged men are talking mostly about religion (or, more precisely, how important the church is). I couldn’t keep my ears away from the conversation. Their conversation diverges into the present war. One of them suddenly brings up high gas prices. The other remarks, “We need to use our God given renewable energy sources; the sun, the wind and water, and not rely on oil.”

Amen to that (probably the only part of their entire conversation I overheard that I agreed with).

On the bus.

White male to another white male. “These Chinese and Indians are every where. They’re taking all our jobs away.”

Oh dear!

Girl to another.

“I really love Indian food, curry and all that stuff. And naan bread.”

Says the other girl. “I think I’ve had Indian food also. I hated it. I had this stuff called Phad thai, and it was waaaaay too spicy for me!”

Duh! Phad Thai!


Amit said...

Pad thai with Naan Bread --- how does that sound---or taste?

I think you littereally "over" heard

Anonymous said...

Interesting, Sunil. Here's one that I overheard in a nearby book store a week ago.

Two young guys come in and ask an employee: "Do you have Shantaram?"

Employee: "Which book of Shantaram are you looking for?"

gawker said...

The problem arises when you have 2 roommates, one of them is a filth lover and one is a fastidious prick. The filth lover never clears dishes, the fastidious prick gets mad, takes his anger out on you along with the filth lover. Finally, the fastidious prick stops talking to everyone in the apartment, stops cooking on his turn and then no one makes food for anyone. You run out of money, eating out. But luckily, just when you are thinking of mailing home for cash, you graduate.

Sunil said...

Amit.....yeah! But actually, i cheated here and didn't put in the complete conversation. The other girl then told the girl who thought Phad Thai was Indian that it was actually Thai :-)

Anand.....too funny!

Vikram, thank you. It's a great relief to know that ALL students don't think it's cool. I was very disturbed for a while....thought the "generation gap" had become too large....but some hope remains :-)

Gawker...i solved that problem by getting my own apartment. It's a little more expensive, but a phd takes a there's no point in suffering with annoying room mates for 5 years. :-)

Sourin Rao said...

How can someone hate Pad Thai ? Beats me. Could be the spicy levels. When I lived in Missour, they had a Thai place with varying levels of spicyness ranging from 1-10. Whoever could eat #10 spicy would have their names on a Wall of Fame.
Most of the Guntur chaps had their name on this Wall of Fame.

greatbong said...

Its a common American thing--"It's so ugly that its good."....I subscribe to the view---watch Mithun's movie "Gunda" and you will know exactly what I mean.

Anonymous said...

Dude Sunil!!!
We meet again.

Anonymous said...

Overheard conversations are really a class apart. Nice ones. I do remember guys in univ who used to take pride in unkept rooms..I dont think its a new gen thing.

Heres one nice one I heard from an old British couple recently. The old man tells his wife, "The world order changes in cycles. The power is now with the West. But it will soon move to the East". He shakes his head sadly and solemnly. His wife happily cheers him up, "Dont worry, we will both be long dead by then."

Sunil said...

Sourin....I love Phad thai.....and Seattle has some of the best Thai restaurants you could find any where (perhaps because of a fairly large Thai population here). Guntur...LOL.

Arnab......I spent many wasted years watching Mithun movies (including classics like Cheetah, Kaalia and loha).....but do not remember Gunda. I think you are making this one up.....but will check :-))

Amlan.....nice to see you here!

Amrit, you must have been a model student (but I am abnormally clean and tidy i guess we're freaks).

Surya......many of my friends indeed did have filthy hostel rooms. But they were not really proud of least, not proud enough to invite people over to observe their filth! But the one you over heard is a good one.....

Unfortunately for me, I might be dead too by the time the power moves to the East :-(

Anonymous said...

Overheard this about myself dozens of time.

"Don't worry he is deaf"

Since I really am a bit, I guess it qualifies as over-hearing? No? :)

Hello Amlan btw. Read(and bookmarked) your blog, loved it.

Anonymous said...

“Would you guys like to come up to see our disgustingly filthy room? I think it’s really cool.”

"Would you like to check out the hideous incinerations on my back? Er... I mean, my tattoo. It's kinda cool. And what about these 11 rings on my left ear?"

Anonymous said...

Phad Thai? oh, you mean that is from Thailand?
oh,, you mean Thailand and India are different countries? :)

but dirty is cool... I must be getting realllly old!

RPM said...

Is that stuff about Pad Thai made up? That sounds utterly ignorant! Especially if I assume that it happened in Seattle or some place where Indian food is sort of mainstream.

And that thing about jobs - uh oh. :-(

Sunil said...

nema...hehe....but you better go for that ear surgery you have been putting off for years.

Srikanth, Charu....:-), it's not made up. I think i was as surprised as her friend. Like I said in a comment above, I left the transcript incomplete. Her friend gasped in shock, and enlightened her. It is strange though.....there's plenty of (bad) Indian food in Seattle, and some of the best thai food in the States is here. Which is why the comment is so priceless! Most people here are very aware of foods from various corners, and i've had an educational experience learning about food!

Ravi said...

Spice Rack on Ave serves Tandoori chicken pasta? maybe the girl went to a fancy indian place tht served phad thai with sambhar? give her some benefit of doubt.. (well i overheard some days back, "Benefit of doubt always goes to girls".... hence the change of heart :)

Anonymous said...

...Gunda. I think you are making this one up.....but will check :-))
Oh no, it is for real! Probably the best Mithunda movie to watch in a group! I won't watch it alone, for sure.

Michael Higgins said...

Hi Sunil
Interesting post.
Pad Thai is great, (but not Indian). If she didn't like Pad Thai, she only likes burger and fries.
I would comment more but I'm still on vacation.

Sonia Faleiro said...

Hilarious post. Now that everyone has an iPod to obscure the outside world, overhearing conversations is a lost art. Thanks Sunil, for reminding us how much fun it can be!

greatbong said...

Gunda does exist...I shall write a post on this marvellous check my blog for it.

Sunil said...

Vishnu, point I need to find a copy of that movie.

Neela....perhaps i didn't know all this, because I don't watch t.v. :-))

Michael, thanks for stopping by even on your vacation. I'm surprised that you are even allowed to come close to a computer while on vacation. Brave.

Sonia.....get rid of your iPod (actually, don't. I love my little mp3 player too, as do most of us).

Arnab, my humble apologies. I wait with baited breath for you post on Gunda (anyway, I read your blog for my daily dose of irony)

Dilip D'Souza said...

Sunil, you said: It's a little more expensive, but a phad thai takes a while...

Why does it take a while and why is it more expensive? (Apart from REALLY being Indian).