Saturday, March 21, 2009

My life came free - Part 1

I hope I am a product of carefully nurtured love & the noble aim to pass on the baton of Ramasamy family DNA down to generations which would probably be known as Ashley Ramasamy or Hariharren Ramasamy, few decades from now and not a freebie for anjaal aluppu marandhu sachet, bought in vaagai adi mukku sumaar (super) market in Tiruneveli.
Evidence is to the contrary though! My father, His father and siblings are well known for their eye for details such as "Bru 150 gm paacketudan skipping kayiru free" and I proudly belong to that lineage which has never bought a single pet jar in its households (be it in Chennai or the US or Singapore). We always have a way with freebies and sniff them better than all namesakes of Tamilnadu put together!
"Onnu vaangina onnu free" has resonated more within our family and held it together for decades than the untruely affection-laden demonstrations such as "Anna, onaku pidikkume nu Delhi lerndhu pori urandai panni eduthindu vandhein". Its considered to be coming of age and "Sundaram iyer parivaar kaa naam roshan karna" type activity, to come home with a freebie! Sworn enemies in brothers and sisters, keep their animosity in their respective VIP-wont-lock-suitcases and appreciate such fetes with generous outpouring of love (read: They get you roadside sweater the next time they come home, which they dont generally spend on).
Today I take immense pride in unveilng some of our proud possessions which would make James Otis' collection of Gandhi belongings look like the relative width of clothes on namitha when compared to her waist size.
Here are those proud conquests:
-- You may walk into any of our first, second, thid cousin fraternity's houses anywhere in the world and we will amaze you with our hospitality. You will get bru coffee in china clay cup and saucer. Thats a promise, if you dont mind the cups and saucers being un-identical. We cannot blame hindustan lever for their inconsistent design of freebies. After all they are free!
-- You may never hesitate to ask us for a plastic cover to carry your kid's milk bottle. We have covers of every size and make. You can choose from RMKv, Walmart, Carrefour or Saravana stores. We demand covers from these organizations even if we are there only for window shopping
-- If you are not the type that uses GPS for navigation, dont hesitate to ask us for a piece of paper and pen to note down the route. The paper would be from eagle diary (depending on your luck, you may even land on an antiquated 1970 diary paper) and the pencil would be from IKEA furniture (which BTW is given to note the furniture specs. Of course, we visit IKEA once a month to collect pencils)
-- While we cook in abundance for our guests and ensure they visit our loo before they leave, excuse us for the tiny dessert bowls, for Gooday biscuit promos dint promise beyond that. Its a strange coincidence that my wife (who is not from our lineage) and my father bought gooday biscuits the same day just to lap up that offer!
-- Ah yeah! While you are at the loo, never forget to use the Swagath hotel sample soap that my dad benevolently donated us (in 100's)
-- For those less observent guests, my heart swells in pride to say that, the spoons for the soup, main course and the desserts were sponsered by my employer's client whose canteen gives a spoon or more a day, for my lunch. We reuse because its free!
The strategically positioned Bvlgari perfume and Nike shaving foam, in our loo are proud displays of, not our affluence, but our persistence in making our air hostess share such freebies meant for business class. After all where there is will, there is a freebie!
I hope we pass on the baton to the future generations and I only wish, they move up the food chain and collect freebies of eclectic nature that will make us all proud and rich!
(PS: Placing a lot of hope on our ability to collect freebies, I have named this blog as Part 1. It should take a week to add another long list of conquests. Thinking of it, we are attending a wedding this week. That means a blouse bit, coconut (why do they give perishables) and a sambadam)

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