Friday, April 16, 2010

Taming Boseji

Our old friend Mr.Bose has been quite well-behaved of late. It still has some quirks. It absolutely refuses to play, for example, Rashid Khan's Kabir bhajans. Any Kabir experts here, while I digress? Remember the doha,
'Bada hua to kya hua, jaise ped khajoor,
Panthi ko chhaya nahin, phal laage ati door.'

Well, Rashid Bhai has changed the 'panthi' ( traveller) to panchhi(bird), which makes no sense at all. Perhaps that's why Boseji considers this recording to be a travesty of Sant Kabir's great poetry.
Jagjit Singh has done even better- he also sings panchhi, while the sleeve notes of his CD very clearly say 'panthi'. Perhaps that's why Boseji is willing to play him!!!

By mid-November last year Boseji had started acting up again. Practically all discs were reading "Disc Error". Nothing but nothing was playable. I was planning to take it to the service centre, but kept postponing the trip. I was, however, sufficiently annoyed with all this non-cooperation and so wrapped up Boseji in an old tablecloth and kept it in a corner of the guest room. My mother gave me her little Philips CD player, which , though not a patch on Boseji in terms of sound quality, at least played all CDs. Not that we had much time for music after that- my mother had her fall, and our lives changed irrevocably.
In March I finally thought of taking Boseji for some TLC at the service centre. Since it is no longer under guarantee, I knew that it would be a relatively expensive affair, so I thought I'd just check it out once more, before taking it for servicing. After such a long holiday, Boseji actually did play, so I packed up little Mr. Philips and put it away. The minute I did that, Boseji went all prima donnish again. So for a few weeks I had Boseji and Philips fighting for space on top of the drawers. I realised that Boseji needs to perceive the presence of Philips to behave!
As of now, Boseji has the place of honour on top of the drawer, while the threatening, deterrent Philips is on a stool just below. Accessible and visible. Let's see how long this arrangement keeps Boseji behaving!

Boseji, however much I may mock you, I truly appreciate your amazing voice. Keep singing and playing for us, my friend!


Aneela Z said...

what happened to the good ol' giving a tight " rapta" to make it start working again? or is it just a pakistani thing that all things animate and inanimate only fear the stick!!!

The Soul of Alec Smart said...

Hahahaha :D

Dipali, poor Boseji seems like he's fallen ill and needs some TLC, not an authoritative little Mr. Philips to boss him around :)

@Aneela: Nahiji, it's a very Hindustani thing as well. Raptas are liberally delivered to TV/radios, washing machines, vacuum cleaners.. you name it!

dipali said...

@Aneela: The first time he seriously misbehaved, Boseji had a good share of 'raptas' from the spouse, but they were totally ineffective:(
The very thought of whacking our exalted Boseji seems most blasphemous, though I have whacked countless other devices of all kinds:)
@The Soul of Alec Smart: When Boseji is mostly playing so well, it looks like 'nakhra', not illness! Let's see how long this lasts! Poor little Philips is just sitting there, wrapped up in a napkin- if his mere presence gets us such good behaviour,
why not?

Banno said...

Well, if you have Boseji at home, a little tantrums you must take care of, no? :))

Natasha said...

Panchi doesn't make any sense in the context- when did they start caring for chaaya, and even if they did, when did we start caring for whether they care for chaaya or not?

And I think Bose-ji needs to feel threatened before he performs. Our Bose-ji is a bit of a prima donna himself - I just refuse to give him bhaav, so he behaves with me, but he really troubles the bechara husband who is fida on him.

starry eyed said...

This is too funny!

You know what works around here...we start cleaning the appliance...and making calls and browsing about fior its disposal/sale...and it starts working like new again :-D

Or I 'fourth' Aneela's rapta!

Anonymous said...

Your personification of the equipment made for hilarious reading! That's how we also treat our stuff at home. Not working, give one tight whack. Still not working - fold hands and plead. Still not working - leave it alone, and not give it any bhav :)

Best wishes,

Sue said...


I love that doha, we learnt it in school along with "Kal kare so aaj kar".

dipali said...

@Banno: If not Boseji, the computer, or the internet, or some damn thing /person sulking/tantrumming. Such is life:(
@Not enough hours!: Did I tell you I love your new name? It suits you perfectly. yes, Bosejis seem to need to perceive a threat.
@starry eyed: we have to keep one step ahead of them, always:)
@Anjali: Thanks! These seem to blur the line between living and non-living things, no?
@Sue: Says the tall person:)

The Print Lover said...

LOL! We faced a somewhat similar scenario.

Our car is seemingly in its last days. The mechanic gave us a bill that was more than the value of the car itself. So we went to test drive a new one. Next day our car wouldnt even start. After a day of trantrumming, she (?) was back to normal.
Like she was angry that we thought of replacing her :)

dipali said...

@The Print Lover: I'm feeling so sorry for your poor old car:) may she continue to behave well!

Mumbai Diva said...

LOL. This was seriously funny. My washing machine is misbehaving too. It has also recd it's share of raptas.

dipali said...

@mumbai diva: I like 'seriously funny'!
I hope your washing machine is okay, and your husband didn't get near it with a screwdriver:)

Choxbox said...


and what about the good old three finger salute (control-alt-del) and reboot? often works. unplug everything and restart. most common advice given by the IT help desk :)