Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Just pondering...

Is there an international etiquette of when to pull the door and when to push the door? I am very interested in this question especially because, all the buildings in my office campus follow the rule of pulling the door when going out of the building and pushing the door when entering the building, and this rule has ingrained so much in me that subconsciously if I am going out of any building anywhere in the world, it has become a tendency for me to pull and if I am entering any building anywhere in the world, it has become a tendency for me to push irrespective of the sign on the door which might indicate to perform otherwise. It was one such occasion recently when the door sign in a shop I visited indicated ‘Push’ when I pulled on my way out of the building that this question popped up and also made me realize how deep the habit has grown. But yes, the question remains - Is there an international etiquette of when to pull the door and when to push the door?

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It was almost 7-8 years ago when I was getting down from my college bus that my lady friend beside me pointed to another person of her gender outside the bus wearing shirt and trousers with shirt neatly tucked in, and remarked ‘No girl ever tucks her shirt in. It looks so disgusting. Cannot she realize that?’ Although I did not whole heartedly agree to this vehemently expressed opinion nor had I noticed till that point of time anything amiss in girls wearing western formals with shirt tucked in – not that I am a keen observer and purist in terms of dress etiquette in the first place, far from it actually – it really hit home the point then that girls ought not to wear shirts tucked in, for my friend was indeed a purist in terms of dressing and what-not. Since that day, I confess, I haven’t noticed a single girl wearing Western formals or any combination of shirt and trousers with the shirt tucked in. Until today. Imagine my surprise when I saw not one but four girls wearing Western formals with their shirts tucked in! Not that they were looking disgusting as my friend felt, but it sort of rekindled the thought about dos and donts of female dressing. But this shirt tucking in – is this a new wave of female fashion statement starting?

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The toughest question to answer these days is ‘How is married life?’ Everyone and anyone who knew you just got married ask this question and there really is no proper answer to this. I mean there you are just having lost that golden freedom of independence, of being care-free, of doing what you felt like doing without asking permission, of going where you want to go without telling anyone, of sitting hours together in front of laptop without being asked why, of being irresponsible, of not caring a damn about anyone else other than you and yet, at the same time, of having obtained a new sense of belongingness with somebody else, of having cared to, of having the joy of caring for someone, of being pampered, of being told what to do and what not to do, of sharing the sorrow with, of sharing the joy with, of doing things specially to see the joy in that person, of missing the person, of feeling responsible for that person, its really a mixed feeling of having gained something precious at the cost of having lost something precious too, for both of them are equally important at their respective phases in age and life. Well, I have time to think and write like I did now, but I cant think and say in so many words when I am asked that question, and hence I just say ‘Married life is nice’ inwardly thinking “Get married and you will know!” if the person is unmarried yet and “You know how it is after marriage and yet you ask!” if the person is married. I confess I have asked this question too but more as a conversation-starter rather than really getting down to reality and brass tacks. Come to think of it, I guess even I am asked for a conversation-starter and hence my reply is good enough without really taking to heart the question or the answer…

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1 comment:

Pradeep said...

In NY, tucking the shirt in when wearing formals is quite common. I guess it is catching up there now.