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Apple red happiness

It was easier to have fruits. So I bit into a very sandy apple. Now what was it with apples and happiness? Upala Sen examines...

india Updated: Mar 16, 2008 02:51 IST
Upala Sen

I don’t know how she manages it but Tigress looks happy all the time. It’s not as if she is cracking up with laughter or anything, but generally she seems in good humour, her amused look in place, her face always glowing…

I realised I was thinking aloud because I heard a sigh that would have put Zephyr to shame and Home Minister’s voice floated down from the loft: “It’s my fault. I should have forced you to have fruits when you were a child.”

And with that she thrust two bulbous apples into my hands and returned to her ‘lofty’ abode.

Now, I have not been keeping in the best of spirits lately, which is why as much as I hate that food type (fruits) I accepted them with uncharacteristic meekness and set off for office.

I don’t know how it works with you but when I am off-colour I prefer talking to people I don’t know or know very little, that way the conversation flows. Otherwise with the familiar Joes conversation dwindles into terse Q&As.

So there we were all huddled near the stairs. Actually he was sitting and we were standing. I think they knew each other a little, besides they had a mother tongue in common. Shyly he muttered something. She translated: he had made it to an august institution. Congratulations followed. The honest praise loosened his tongue and he started talking— how adventurous it was going to be, the course needed “some tweaking” though, he would come back and “do things differently”… He was promised a lunch and a lecture and when he left X said, “Nice boy. If he doesn’t change, only evolves. He will make some woman happy some day.”

X’s words brought back a memory of a humid first-year Arnold (Mathew) lecture. DM’s (the professor) grandson was coming over for the weekend and she couldn’t quite concentrate on the Scholar Gypsy. And though at 18 one doesn’t think too grandly of grandsons, one is nevertheless willing to expand such interests to cut short lessons. I have forgotten most of what she had said except one

bit. She was telling us how he helped her wipe the dishes dry post dinner and she remarked, “I teach him these things. At least he will make some woman happy some day.”

The grandson, incidentally, was then all of three.

I thought, are we so wretched that generations of men have to be trained before we can be happy? It was easier to have fruits. So I bit into a very sandy apple. Now what was it with apples and happiness? I surfed the net. There was happyapples.com, the official site of a company by the same name in

Missouri, US. Then there were these lyrics on walkingtheveganline.blogspot.com that went Apple red happiness/Popcorn cheerfulness/Cinnamon singing inside..../Peppermint energy Gumdrop holiday/When you choose a vegan life! On anthrofiction.com there was a love story titled ‘An Apple... for Your Happiness’ where this doe-eyed beauty gets this man to fall in love with her by feeding him her specially baked apple pie.

Why is it such an exercise for women to be happy? How do men do it? The site jumbojoke.com enlists some reasons why men are happier: Your last name stays put.

Chocolate is just another snack. The world is your urinal, etc.

Another day over, as I dumped my bag with a thud the Home Minister asked, “You OK?" I was not, I was feeling sick after all those sandy apples. “Ma, how will apples make me a happier person?” She smiled guiltily, “I didn’t say anything about happiness. I thought you were saying you wanted glowing skin.”

I was surfing channels aimlessly when Best Friend called. He was very unsympathetic in the morning and I did not want to talk to him so I asked the Brat to take the call. She hollered, “He wants to know if you are feeling any better— then he can stop doing the dishes.”