My blog of February is all about food and diet. And all about love too. Have you ever wondered about the strange love-hate relationship between food, diet and love? Sounds confusing right?
Food is our basic need and so is love. We need both food and love to survive. Then what happens, when diet comes into the scene?
Diet is like a racist leader…it creates divide and rule policy among food groups. Examples are no-sugar, no-carb, no-white foods, and the list can go on and on.
It sometimes creates pre-condition for being in love, especially among the youth. Your diet is right, you look good and healthy and are attractive. It even gives you an edge in some interviews.
Allow me to introduce, the three characters of today’s story.
Character 1: Shantanu Chakrabarti aka Shaan. 38 years old and works and lives in Chennai. Married to Simran Kaur for the last 10 years. Love marriage, of course!
Character 2: Jignesh Bhai Patel aka Jiggi. Same age as Shaan and lives in Ahmedabad. Married to Bhawna Ben for the last 15 years. Horoscopes were matched to avoid horror scopes later. Arranged marriage without a doubt!
Character 3: Moatoshi aka Moa. A year junior to the other two. Hails from Nagaland and blissfully single. Now works and lives in Mumbai.
Shaan and Jignesh had registered for a course by Rujuta Diwekar. After 12 weeks of waiting, they finally received a call to meet the reknowned dietician. So, both arrived in Mumbai and after some planning through whatsapp decided to put up in Moa’s bachelor pad.
‘Hey, Bongo! You look like a soccer ball now. Don’t you feel scared of going back to Kolkata?’ Moa joked.
Shaan had a serious look on his face as he scanned the apartment. He was trying to find some space to lodge his baggage.
‘You may get kicked by both Mohun Bagan and East Bengal!’ chuckled Moa.
‘No buddy. I am in serious trouble. It’s been 10 years of survival with rajma chawal and there is more air in me than a soccer ball, I feel.’
‘Hmm’. Acknowledged Jiggi.
‘I tried GM diet and no carbs diet but only for part of the day. When I was not at home. Simran knows to cook rajma chawal only. I yearn for some fish curry sometimes.’
‘There is a diet called the diet by origin. It says that if you continue to eat the food you grew up eating, your body best adapts to it. A plus point of arranged marriage. My wife cooks what my mother used to. Perks of arranged marriage.’
‘Makes sense.’ Said Shaan. Still unable to decide where to keep his toiletries pouch.
‘Its more to do with marrying someone with the same food background. Could be love or arranged.’ Added Moa.
Moa empties a shelf for Shaan and turns to Jiggi.
‘But Jiggi bhai, what’s with that little potbelly? You almost look like a 4-month old pregnant Somalian lady.’ Moa chuckled again.
‘Bro, don’t ask. My business went through a major slump and liquor became my comforter. I used to travel to Daman for the weekend sometimes to indulge in drinking.’
‘How is the situation now?’ asked Shaan.
‘Business has picked up again. Put now the potbelly refuses to go. So, like one day, I read about Madam Diwekar and how she transformed Ambani Bhai’s son. And I got motivated and registered.’
‘You are one lucky chap.’ Shaan and Jiggi said in a chorus.
Moa gestured with his hands, why?
‘You are not married, number one.’ Said Shaan.
‘You can eat your Chinese food everyday, number two.’ Said Jiggi.
‘No digestion problems since most of your food seems boiled, par boiled and bland.’ Shaan added.
‘And, no potbelly which walks a step ahead of you, but with you all the time.’ Jiggi continued.
‘Ssssshhhh.’ Said Moa.
‘The grass is always greener on the other side.’
‘I have been detected with diabetes and now I make a conscious effort to eat the foods which suit my body. I engaged with a personal trainer a few months back and now I continue to follow the exercises that was recommended then.’
‘Boss, where do you get the time? When I return from work at 8 pm, my children want me to do something or the other with them. That continues till they go to bed at 9 pm. By then I am totally drained out.’ Added Shaan.
‘Perks of not entering a family life’ grumbled Jiggi.
‘Now that’s not fair. I am almost the same age as both of you. I did not get the right companion to settle down. And sometimes I miss being a family man. But no excuses is good excuse. What about the mornings? Wake up early and do some form of workout.’ Added Moa.
‘Agree with you buddy.’ Both chorused.
‘You are not your weight’ reads out Moa as he takes Jiigi’s laptop from him.
‘Rujuta Diwekar says that we should not eat oats and other cereals for breakfast. It seems we should not begin our day with boring and tasteless stuff like those cereals. And all this while, we knew that Kellogg’s cereals was the best breakfast choice.’ Said Shaan.
‘Diwekar Madam talks like my Baa. She says you should eat enough ghee everyday. Did not pay heed to Baa’s free advice, now paying up with a course fee.’ Sighed Jiggi.
‘Ha, ha! We never give importance to anything free, unfortunately.’ Replied Moa.
‘Simran is glad that I am taking serious steps to becoming fit and boy, am I glad too. I will take the prescribed diet charts and now will get poha, upma and other yummy food at home. Simran has said, she will also follow the diet…it will be our journey together.’
‘Ohho, too much, love all over again, is it?’ Jiggi teased Shaan.
‘So, guys tomorrow your life upliftment starts. Before you transform into the good-goody students of Ms. Diwekar’s health conscious class, lets smoke some grass.’ Moa suggested with a serious look on his face.
‘You still carried on our little mischiefs from back old Pune college days?’ Jignesh asked with popping eyes.
A momentary pause.
‘Hell, no. Was just kidding!’ chuckled Moa again.
‘More than anything, I remember how I was ragged and asked to treat my seniors to something enigmatic. A local batchmate suggested and helped me out. Then I took you to the joint guy. My first and last visit.’ Added Moa.
‘And by the way, Nagaland folks don’t eat Chinese food.’ Winked Moa.
The three friends laughed and joked again after 8 years. They reminisced over some drink, food and all things good.