Every country is different. Every country has a flavour. There are unsaid and unspoken rules that every country follows. And if you are an Indian, I am sure you follow these. How else would you survive?!
1. Never walk on the sidewalk. Please. It’s for other important things…it’s for peeing, for the dog to sleep, for vendors to set up their stalls and for us to litter.
Walk in the middle of the road. Do you see that girl right there in the middle? Just like that. There is no reason why you should walk on the footpath. The sidewalk has a different purpose or let me say, important purposes! It’s the place where people pee, dogs sit and laze around, vendors sell their products and people litter. So, just give them space. Yeah?
2. Use your phone for all the right reasons and at the right time! On the road, while walking or driving…just reply to that text. And talk all the time, wherever you are.
Utilize the time you are walking by texting on your phone. Don’t look up and check for your safety. That’s others job. They should be the ones looking since they are driving. And talk on the phone. And keep checking if the person on the other end is able to hear you. If not, shout. People around are virtually deaf. And it’s not like there is some punishment or anything, right?
3. Ignore queues. Break them. If you can’t, just stick to the person in front of you. And you are not really sticking to them if you can’t smell their hair shampoo!
Don’t stand in queues. Just pretend that they don’t exist and wriggle somewhere at the head of the line. And if you are a woman, just give a lovely smile. It’s magic. And if you are still forced to stand in one, stick to the one in front of you. He should know you exist. Push and communicate that you are in a hurry. Be so close that you can make out what hair shampoo they use. Otherwise, you are not really close.
4. At the traffic signal: Green – Go, Yellow – Go, Red – Go faster.
We are busy people. Please break the signal since you have somewhere to reach. Also, people with two-wheeler vehicles should zig-zag their way and use the footpath to overtake other vehicles. Like I said, the footpath serves so many functions.
5. Knowledge is power. Knowledge of your neighbour is supremacy. So pry. Jhaanko aur dekho!
What’s your neighbour doing? Reading? Texting? Anyway, it doesn’t matter. You should pry. Look into their phones…see who they are texting. Is the girl beside you texting her boyfriend? Is the boy beside you sending a “non-veg” joke? Now judge them. Think about how the society has degraded morally. Think about how you’d have punished them were they your kids.
6. Stare and make friends. Think about what they are thinking. Try to see how their day went. Your eyes are your gadgets.
Take a nice look around. See someone? Or anyone? Now stare at them. Stare so hard that they notice you staring at them. If you still think they haven’t taken a note, smile at them. Now did they notice? Great. Go ahead and stare at someone else. See what they are wearing…do they look good? Make mental notes of what they should have worn instead of those shoes. Keep doing this. It’s a great mental exercise.
7. Going out alone is for losers. Go out with people. Be it anywhere. Even the loo. Whom will you have a conversation with, otherwise?
Always have company. Have a symbiotic relationship with someone who can accompany you and whom you can accompany. Girls, always have a loo partner. Guys, never let a girl go out alone. And do NOT ever go to a restaurant alone. The stares will kill you and no one will be there to witness (since you are alone).
8. Always have a conversation with foreigners. Know about them. Ask them all the questions you’ve been wanting to ask people about America.
Please go and get to know them. Ask them their names, where are they from, whether they are on their honeymoon, whether they have kids, whether they pooped, everything. Make them feel comfortable. And click their pictures. Stand beside them and ask them to say “CHEESE”! You need to show we are a friendly lot.
9. Our clocks work differently. Learn to show up late. Showing up early is equivalent to being “vella”.
If you are new to India, please learn how our clock works. We don’t like being on time. If we say we’ll meet at 9, we mean 10. If the party is supposed to start at 7, it’ll start at 9:30. If you show up on time, there is a high chance you have absolutely nothing to do. You are a loser.
10. Pack things that are not required. And carry lots of bags. Travel heavy.
I don’t care if that’s the opposite of travel light. But that’s what we understand. Pack for 10 days if you are going for a day and pack your whole house if you have to go for a week. Because, honestly, you might have several emergencies anywhere and everywhere. What if you are hungry? And you don’t have your favourite cookies? What if there’s no food around? What if you land up on an uninhabited island? What if the aliens attack? What if it’s the day when the world ends? You have to think of everything.
11. Always give an opinion about everything. Everything under the sun is okay to give an opinion on.
Your opinion is invaluable and everybody needs it. Talk about the economy, politics, Bollywood, education, anything. It doesn’t matter if you have the knowledge required to discuss about these topics. You should look intelligent and sound like one. Tell the woman nearby with the baby how important breast-feeding is. Discuss with the man next to you how morally degrading Indian kids have become. It’s important and you have to voice it.
12. Throw that empty packet of chips on the road. Only if there is garbage on the road will sweepers clean it. Gandagi failao, Bharat ko swachh banao!
Eat the chips packet and peep out the window. Is the road clean? No? Throw it out. Nothing bad can come out of throwing one wrapper in the pool of thousand others. On the contrary, more the amount of garbage, more inevitable it will become for the sweeper to clean it. You are doing a good thing.
Saare jahaan se achha, hindustan humara!