I only swear when I drive! I realized this horrible truth as soon as I started driving in Bangalore. It was a hidden character inside me that has not revealed itself until now. It all started like this.
I started learning to drive in October of last year. My husband took driving classes for me whenever the driving school guy did not show up. On one ill-fated day my husband was taking the driving class. We were driving in front of CMRIT college and I was behind the wheel. I saw a pedestrian walking on the road but not on the footpath. At that point of time my driving skills were limited to driving on the left side of the road, almost sticking to the footpath. The pedestrian encroached my space! I had to slow down, press the clutch, switch the gear and move slightly away from him. At the same time there were cars coming from the other side of the road. For a beginner, who has absolutely no road sense, this was a gargantuan task so there came my first swear word,’ f**k’. My husband was stunned. We were about six months young in our relationship and he did not know this side of me.
I immediately said, ‘I am sorry. There is a foot path right beside him. Why can’t he walk on that? Why does he have to walk on the road?’
My husband replied, ‘Calm down’.
He immediately added, ‘Move away from him. Are you going to run over him or what?’
I really wanted to run over him. Why else are there footpaths for? The pedestrian had no intentions to cross, he was just walking on the road as though he owned it. I had no other option but to move away from him.
People motivated me to swear in my PhD and their efforts were not wasted. Their speeches have registered in my subconscious mind and waited for fulfillment in the most inopportune moment.
My labmates swear words flew along with their vocabulary whenever some piece of equipment did not work. The harsh words hit the metallic surface of the experimental apparatus and repelled back at me. AT one instance, one of my lab-mates (name not provided here for sensitive reasons), was conducting the experiments.Every time, the experiment went wrong, he wrote the word, ‘fanculo’, beside the experimental details in the lab record book.
I asked him, ‘What is this?’, and pointed at the word, ‘fanculo’
He replied, ‘It means that the experiments did not work in Italian’
I smiled and said, ‘No, I don’t think so’
He responded, ‘Yes it is true’ and seriously nodded his head.
Since I was the only non-swearing person in the lab, my lab-mates tried to enrol me into the swear club. They gave scientific explanation as to why mouthing bad words is good for people.
To be continued…
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