Saturday, July 11, 2009


The line of battle was drawn for the supremacy in the Indian car bazaar when the cavalcade of multinational car companies tailgated on to our roads firing on all cylinders and the market leader finding itself in the 'clutches' of competition changed gear and made a 'bumper' issue of its range of models in order to 'choke' its rivals. But the social spin-off of this brouhaha has been the insidious invasion of car buzzwords into the middle class lingo.

"I thought that I had pulled off a coupe (sic) when I bought a tin Lizzie(old car) for a song," wrote my uncle from Mumbai, "But soon it became a sad song as the car turned out to be a veritable bone-shaker. Now, after six months, my 'state of the heart' could any time lead me to a car-diac arrest needing a multi-point injection from my doctor."

Take another quote overheard at a party: "Despite my obesity, I could catch the pick-pocket because my weight-to-velocity ratio was in my favour. In the scuffle, I sustained a few dents on my bodywork, but I came out of it with my chassis intact."

My aunt Girija, on enquiring about a movie that she recently saw, replied, " It was a murder story. I love films with good 'suspension' till the very end." Her son, nick-named 'dicky bird' for his penchant for travelling in the rear space of cars, keeps asking me why the cars don't have their 'trunks' in front like the elephants do.

According to a friend of mine, our Prime Minister should fit a central locking device to his flock (of ministers) through which he can lock up their blabbering mouths and while unlocking, he should enforce strict 'emission norms' on their verbal diarrhoea.

Car jargon can often have bizarre effects on the odd sections of our society. The very mention of 'saloon' (car) can make confirmed tipplers with suspect 'road grips' drool, thereby increasing their vulnerability to 'hit the road.' An ad for the 'estate' car can give jinxed realtors and property speculators the 'flat tyres'. Windscreen w(v)ipers can make a man with ophidiophobia(fear of snakes) lose his 'bearings'.

I am myself on the 'horns' of dilemma as the force that could break a horse's power is being brought on me at home to buy a bigger car. Their demand may not draw much mileage out of me. For, instead of yielding to pressure like a collapsible steering wheel, I intend to fit the noisier ones with a silencer by discoursing on the need to tighten our (seat) belts to avert a (cashy) crash.

Video Courtesy:

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