Saturday, April 09, 2005


... and the chicks for free?

I do not eat candies. Not, at least, the kind that used to be called ‘boiled sweets’ in the yellowing books I read in my youth.

(I confess to a weakness for chocolates, especially liqueur chocs, Grand Marnier for choice. Of course I’m not cadging, perish the thought, I merely mention it as a matter of passing interest and absolutely and categorically deny that that statement is directed at any charitable souls in the cyber-ether …)

To resume … I do not like candies. There is nobody in my home who likes candies. I do not normally interact with children whom I can bribe with candies.

Then why, when the stewardess comes round before take-off with that tray heaped with Alpenliebe and Cofitos, do I grin ingratiatingly and pick up a fistful of the stuff? Why do I try to make light of it by telling her, in conspiratorial fashion, that “I’ll be just a little greedy”? And why oh why do I compound my sins by chasing down a stray strawberry bite and then explaining weakly “I have a daughter”?

Simple answer, of course. Freebies.

Suspended above Death Valley on a clear day with an awe-inspiring view of the most starkly majestic landscape below, I could still turn away from the window to claim my share of the booty (one plastic cup of flat cola and a miniscule sachet with exactly 5 salted peanut halves). Prompted by hunger? Thirst? What about the hoagie and Diet can in my carry-on?

When a Certain Magazine (one does not name That Media Group’s publications on blogs) started to appear in a cellophane pack with free samples of toothpaste/shampoo/hair-oil/whatever, I regularly bought it at airport bookstores. After all, it did have some good reviews. As my emigrant friends would say, Yeah right! What made the purchase even more stunningly irrelevant was my .. aerodynamic? .. hair-style. (Well yes, I do still need toothpaste)


We all hate airline food, or claim to. We all agree that it’s terrible. We know, because when the long-suffering lady leans over and asks ‘Vaige or nawn-vaige, Sir?’, we fold out the seat-tray and hunker down over the Rice a la Rubber and the Putrid Pickle. Prompted solely by civility, mind – how COULD we say No when the nice lady’s taken the trouble to wheel her trolley up the aisle? Braving indigestion and obesity out of sheer kindness.

Something for nothing. Beating the system. Getting a bargain. Poor Milton Friedman, the history of mankind demonstrates that there will never be a significant number of people who believe him.

Postscript – the kind lady actually came back after take-off. To present me with an air-sickness bag. Bulging with candies. “For your daughter, Sir”. She has a genuine smile.
I checked her name-tag. Thank you, Ms. Lovely Sarkar.

What an awesome blog! And no, I don't throw such words around lightly, unless I happen to be talking about my wife's attire :)

I found you through India Uncut and you'll be up there with Bridal Beer on my list of best written blogs.
Made famous by Amit Verma?

This blog needs no endorsements. Infact the way I see it, Amit can take credit for stumbling on to this really wonderful blog. Also, practically everyone dropping in from Amit's blog cant resist the temptation of comparing this blog with Bridal Beers. Why?

I am not contesting the fact that Bridal Beer's blog makes for interesting reading. But, barring the Bong connection, the similarities pretty much end here.

end there
She writes very well. So does he. Hence the connection. I never said the two blogs were similar.
I love Coffitos.
I liked this post :)
Simple because I do the same thing--I can NEVER pass up a freebie, even if it means paying more money to get the freebie in the first place!
Its called "SALE!" here and one goes about and buys Persian Rugs for a non-existent Living room .. coz its on SALE!! Damn!
love your post....!
have you ever tasted those brown candies (with no brand name!)served before take-off on the airline with a "D" connection?
i have shamelessly asked for "air-sickness bag" full just for my son!
I find freebies totally irresistible. Free newspapers, free drink samples, free laundry detergent, free deodorant... if it's there for the taking, I'll take it. I have no idea who or what I can blame for this insatiable greed, but it does result in some rather unusual consumer goods experiences. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to try a sample portion of this soy-based chocolate dessert.
postcards outside bars, mentos at bank counters, sample cooked (frozen) kababs at the supermarket, free alcohol mostly anywhere, free new email accounts, irrelevant memorabilia from events,pubs,marketing sprees.....
(my 2 pie bit)

- and no one has poignantly thought of fresh air, the smell of rain on earth, unconditional love.

ya, right.
and yes, that airplane food one- I have never quite got it. Is it some sort of "I have paid ofr this so I will bloody well make use of it" or just succumbing to the (inexplicable)greed...
you know what they say, the best things in life are free
Good stuff this!
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Is it any wonder you work for the Government!!
Really enjoyed reading this one!
There's a saying in Tamil - Freeya kuduta phenyl koda kudipom. Which means 'If it's free, we'll even drink phenyl'
Funny post. A must-read blog :-)
hhaha hehehehaw haww!! :) that was surely funny!!!
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