Witerati: Much ado about modaks, masks & muted Onam sadhyas

Come Corona’s season of Onam and Ganeshotsav, and the dilemma driving denizens is -- to do or not to do neighbourhood jollifications
In times of coronavirus, to partake of the neighbourhood pujas or sadhyas or not is the million-modak question.(Getty Images/iStockphoto)
In times of coronavirus, to partake of the neighbourhood pujas or sadhyas or not is the million-modak question.(Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Updated on Aug 30, 2020 02:22 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | ByChetna Keer

Come Corona’s September. As Corona presides over its first September, poor dear Rock Hudson might well be doing a cemetery-confined workout, twisting in his grave contemplating twists ‘n’ turns to his classic were it to be remade in the time of Corona, locked out in his Italian villa.

Well, let the Hudsons rock it in the grave, come September and our Lamba jis & Lally Singh jis are more in the mood to rock it, Unlock, stock and barrel.

The thing about Come September is that it can seem very much like that Maharaja Mac burger out of which one hopes to see popping oodles of extra cheese topping.

The thing about August in the time of Corona is – dishing out damp festival season ‘starters’, as it is, like Janmashtami, Onam etc – that it pretty much looks like a mithai box cloaked with a cling film.

Alas, rather than a designer Haldiram hamper, Corona’s festival-dotted August looks like a boring nukkad-wale ka mithai dabba, bereft of smashing saccharine showstoppers.

Of Modaks in the time of masks

Picture this. Looks like the Lollitas, Lamba jis & Co may be legging it to Unlock’s August jollifications, Ganeshotsav or Onam, in neighbouring apartments. But are they? Many an RWA (Residents’ Welfare Association) is erupting into Ganeshotsav gusto or Onam feasting, throwing social distancing protocols to the wind, so much so that the same ‘Tin Pot’ RWA chief who ticked you off for that “one” time he caught you mask-less in the Lift, is the one leading the lung exercises riding “Ganpati Bappa Morya” ululations, albeit minus his mask.

Ah, but looks like the only place Lollitas & Co are legging it up and down is their apartment building’s common corridors, exercising not so much their ample anatomies as their grey cells: To go or not to go – to partake of the neighbourhood pujas or sadhyas. That is the million-modak question.

“Are you crazy, how can you think of flouting social distancing norms?” the hyperventilating elderly Biji or Bauji’s voice of caution caterwauls.

“Oh it’s cool, as long as you wear your mask,” the in-house pragmatic teenager twattles.

“Hmmm ... honey, if you’re risking going, you might jolly well smuggle out some Modaks for me too!”

That jolly last voice, belonging to a Lamba ji, Lally ji & Co, is the one that clinches the jollification joining-in dilemma for Lollita.

Actually, it’s not the voice that does it. It’s the “unmasked” delight dripping from the vocal cords of Lamba ji or Lally ji at the mere prospect of Modaks that decides it for Lollita.

Lollita’s one frosty look at the bulbousness mapping the middle regions of Lamba ji or Lally ji’s anatomies tilts the scales in favour of not going. Who’d wish the other scales tilting towards triple digits were Lamba ji & Co to park their Lockdown-cultivated calories on it!

The curious case of much ado about ‘unmasked’ glee for Modaks.

Of Unlock, stock and barrel

Whilst Lollita & Co debate whether or not to leg it to neighbouring pujas and sadhyas, Lamba jis & Lally jis are busy legging it to, nah, not to parks (post-Lockdown, parks are passe), but to Unlock’s hottest Selfie-ism destinations – India Gate and Raisina Hill to Sukhna Lake to Sunset Point.

If you thought the reason Lollita & Co didn’t leg it with the male for the masked selfie at Sukhna or India Gate is because Lamba ji or Lally Ji is suffering ‘n’ squiggling from a hangover of her glacial glare at the Modak smuggling schemes, perish the thought.

The reason they’re going solo is because they’re hoping to stock up for real hangovers. For, post the masked Status Update-ism from Sukhna or India Gate, Lamba ji & Co are looking to do the other kind of gate – gate-crashing a “thekaa” for September stocks.

The curious case of Corona’s ‘Come September’ locked up not with a Gina (Lollobrigida) but with Gin.

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