Chicken Soup for the (Female) MBAs Soul - Part II

Ministhy Dileep | October 18,2013 03:50 pm IST

[On Spiritual Rejuvenation: By Ms. Fast Tracker]


"What do you get when you mix black with yellow?" Gurujee asks with an all-knowing smile.

After she recovers her composure, Ms. Fast Tracker stares wonderingly at the serene face smiling at the audience. Not that she was ready for a Zen and the Mobike Mechanism early on Friday morning. The Training Department had tricked her into attending the stuff. After promising that it was on Stress Management, damn it. " Black", she says, rather crisply. " Correct. Sinful yellow becomes a nasty black", harrumphs Gurujee. Everyone laughs. She frowns and surreptitiously checks her watch. Yuk! This has been going on for more than four hours now.


"What happens if you mix white with yellow? Even a teeny weenie bit of soulful white?" Before she has time to do a mental mixing, Gurujee preempts her answer. "Dirty Yellow becomes humane. And resembles the colour of jealousy and envy less prominently. Would you agree with me, daughter?" (Lordie, spare me she thinks. Last time someone called me daughter was when I shared a drink with Old Aunt Philomena). She excuses herself during the time the Gurujee sips his orange juice and slips out of the training hall.


She meets the handsome guy from finance, at the tea corner. They start discussing income tax. After madam calculates how much of her earnings have been wiped out of her custody, she orders chamomile tea. The finance guy bids goodbye after listening to her wisecracks on Gurujee. She had wanted to impress him. You see, she had seen the potential of a white knight. Even though he discussed insurance.


She looks listlessly at the incense stick spreading citrus notes from the corner of the teashop. The voice of the Spiritual Guru reverberates in her inner being. "Be like an incense stick - spread sweetness wherever you traverse." She wonders if Mandira Bedi would fit in with that statement. And gleefully, maliciously shakes her head. No way. Not even by the noodle straps of the invisible outfit. Om, Shanti, Shanti.


How on earth can you be a white innocent in the corporate world? Easy enough for the Gurus to give tips on the art of living in a black, merciless world. What did he suggest that she try out instead? Start breathing deeply, when the permanent black colleague saunters past with the rather green-in-the-gills boss? All the while plotting an alliance with the power camp.


She tries to do a self-analysis and concludes. That her conscience is a rather jaundiced yellow. And fast mixing with black. The breathing was only speeding the merger.


Maybe she should try reading more spiritual books. She searches in her vanity bag. Comes up with her daily planner on which the last four hours spiritual notes had been jotted. Under the heading 'Mandatory'. Next to the one called "Don't forget". Where she has noted the amount of washing to be done and vegetables to be bought. Not to mention the Dog Show. Where the most eligible bachelors usually turned up.


Stifling a yawn, Madam Jaundice reads, "Even the stone which lies next to the jasmine creeper, splattered with its fragrant pollen, smells sweet." She rolls her eyes. Maybe she can try that one for the next presentation on Customer Delight. Spray them with pollen. To make them sneeze with delight. Oh, Gurujee, she groans silently, I have become too jaded indeed. And I am not yet thirty-three.


On checking her email on her laptop, Ms.Yellow-On-the-Guts reads the new bomb. Dropped by her erstwhile B-School classmate now in Rwanda, Burundi. That measly old duck who had gone adventuring with an NGO, had got married some time ago. Apparently she had got herself a son. (The mail was addressed to the exclusive coterie of classmates wherein Ducky had been allowed in solely because she had been well, rather silly and easily impressed. And too flattered and awed to have been included).


Now, that loser had gone ahead and done something the others hadn't done. Her female soul gets very colorful. No time for the pollen now. Not even for the incense. Especially when the biological clock is ticking merrily to the deadline and the potential white knight still talks insurance. Madam grins evilly, feels her usual confident self and starts to type.


Dear All, she writes, Aren't we all glad to be the Godmothers of Master Ducky. Oh, sweet Ducky, just HOW do you manage to get the time for all that delivery-shelivery stuff. And isn't Rwanda a place where there is no electricity? Oh, I guess you did a Mira Nair. I read in Savvy the other day that she had opted for the traditional delivery schedule instead of a Just-In-Time computerized Caesarian. Is Master Duck quacking as yet? Kiss his priceless little head for me. Smooch, smooch.


Darling Ducky, I am sure you are achieving all your career drivers of domestic happiness, relationship building and service to humanity. Do they pay well in NGOs these days? How I wish I had your time. You see, I have this meeting with the Business Heads in Seattle next week and a darn seminar where the Vice Presidents of thirty, or was it forty-two Fortune 500 are meeting together for the first time. In Tokyo. And I have to do all the stupid planning by myself. I don't even get time for my aerobics. And I really hate to balloon up by ignoring my figure. Maybe I will get to swim it all away in the all-paid cruise liner that my company has promised me. Aren't they sweeeeet?


What business did you say your husband was in? Wasn't that the company that got busted last month? Oh, dearie, don't worry. I am sure there will be lots of opportunities for you to really work after the kid grows up in five years time. When did you say the second one was coming? Don't delay it darling. It's not very wise.


Madam Black-Yellow mix signs off with a happy cheerio and marks the return receipt. She wants to make sure that the rest of the twenty has read it. And laughed equally heartily at Ducky for boasting of her quacky, smelly nappy-bound achievement. Maybe the fool will learn her place in the order of things. And always keep to the sidelines. Damn, who is ringing the cell?



Ministhy S. is PG (PM&IR) from XLRI-Jamshedpur, and currently, an IAS officer working in the UP cadre. She has written five books - 'Unequal Equations', 'Learning with Tippy Tortoise: Tales for Kids', 'Happy Birthday: Poems for Kids' and a novel published by Dronequill Publishers, Bangalore....