Friday, June 17, 2005


Having recently read an article on the dying art of hitchhiking in The Hindu (hereafter referrred to as HH) and because the movie is about to be released (it might have been released all over the world but here in Chennai it hasn’t), let me give a few ‘rule of the thumbs’ to be taken into consideration while practicing this noble art.

1.Surprisingly, putting your thumb out works fairly frequently. Best place to get a lift is a traffic signal or around a turning where people slow down.

2.Always put your hand out when pretty young things zip by you. The chances of you getting a lift are abysmally low (say lower than the chances of Dubya being able to spell ‘United States of America ‘ correctly) but just assume you convert, then boy oh boy…

3.Murphy’s law of HH – the people who are willing to take you always take the first left. Invariably this involves their making gestures to indicate that they are very sorry but they will be turning left soon and they realise they are committing the worst mistake of their lives and will probably go straight to hell for this but inspite of this off they go, taking the first left, worst fellows. If however you want to take the first right, then my advice to you is to go to the White House, bonk Bush on the head, then come to my house where I will drop you off wherever you want to be dropped.

4.If you ever thought HH was boring, think again. There was this guy who went some distance out of his way to drop me, and then preached to me that at my age I should be walking. Another guy dropped me at home after recognising me (he had seen me on this quiz show on BBC called University Challenge) and kept questioning me about it, how I got there, what it takes to be a quizzer, how Bush got elected twice…. There was this old professororial no nonsense chap who started the conversation on finding I was finishing my B.E. by asking whether Anna Univ graduates were employable and then rubbishing my point of view (thankfully the journey ended much before I abused AU too much). Then there was this pretty girl who offered me a lift…. Wait a minute that happened only in my dreams. Sigh!

Simple rules to follow but if you follow them, and if you can fill a minute with sixty seconds worth of hitchhiking got, then you will be a man, my son!