Mars vs Venus
by Vimala Ramu
“You know what happened the other day. I was talking to Sheela….”
“Which Sheela is it? Don’t shoot off without clearly telling me who it is”
Computers are supposed to be very intelligent designed as they are by the best technical brains and wrought as they are with expert hands. But they can be pretty dumb at times. For example, I cannot understand why every time I mention ‘Mala’ it asks whether it is ‘Komala’ or ‘Vimala’. Similarly, it can never make out that ‘Supriya’ and ‘Priya’ have nothing to do with each other and as such there is no reason for any doubt or confusion. Probably, it is due to its extra sharp ‘brain’ that it cannot help nitpicking.
Likewise, the men folk in my family, though they claim to be more intelligent than us, the lowly females, are found wanting in quite a few circumstances.
Having two Sheelas or two Neelas in the extended family is akin to having two rooms or two bedrooms as far as the brain is considered. When a narration takes place, the narrator need not specify which one it is (A or B) that is involved in the anecdote. As the narration progresses, it becomes obvious whether the one meant (Sheela/Neela/bedroom) is A or B. Sometimes.in fact, the specificity of the person involved becomes subservient to the narrated matter.
But not to our men folk; they need to clear at the very outset as to which one I am referring to. Without this clarification they just refuse to let us proceed to the next stage of narration. Sometimes, this effort to make them understand about whom the narration specifically is, becomes so complicated that, many a time I give up in the middle in disgust and terminate the conversation.
When we talk to women, this problem of nit picking hardly arises. They listen patiently without interrupting because they know that the gist of the matter may not be limited to the characters/things mentioned in the first line to bother about whether it is A or B. Moreover things become obvious when they hear the narration to the end.
Thus, though we think we are presenting the topic in hand formally with introduction, body and conclusion, the men folk are totally baffled by the lack of co ordinates of the characters involved. As a result many an anecdote goes unrelated due to sheer nit picking and lack of skills or quick uptake more familiarly known as ‘Reading between the lines.’
I am afraid I have to contradict Prof Higgins and sing, “Why can’t men be like women”?