Many physicists today postulate the existence of multiple universes, even when sober. We used to live in a world of infinite possibilities. Now we live in an infinite number of worlds. India shines. Democracy thrives. The economy booms. A hundred flyovers bloom. This is not that India. If you see your picture here one day, don’t worry. That’s not you.

Ask Uncle


Dear Uncle,

Our grandmother has started talking to furniture. Is this a cause for concern?

Javed, Bangalore


Respected Javed-bhai,

The key question is, is the furniture talking back? If so, you have poltergeists. You will have to call either a Catholic priest or Steven Spielberg. If you have small children in the house, it’s better to call Mr. Spielberg. Don’t worry if the furniture appears to be moving. They are simply trying to escape your grandmother. I’m guessing they learnt this from watching you.

If the furniture is neither speaking nor moving, then I suggest you try talking to her. It’s quite possible she may prefer talking to you, although I cannot judge, since I have never talked to you myself. All I have as evidence is the question you asked me. The question is concise, but not particularly entertaining. She may be chatting with chairs in order to avoid talking to you. If this is the case, buy more furniture. You could also put her in touch with Mr Clint Eastwood, who does the same thing in front of large audiences. Perhaps they can form a club.

Love, Uncle


Genuine article from actual paper, starring Mr Clint Eastwood


12 comments on “Ask Uncle

  1. wheelerwrite
    September 9, 2012

    Hi India, Did you publish this because of Clint Eastwood and this is a coincidence and you haven’t read about or seen Clint’s performance at the Republican convention?

    • shovonc
      September 9, 2012

      How could I forget? Thanks a ton. Uncle has revised his advice.

  2. Barb Drummond
    September 10, 2012

    There’s a wonderful line in the film ‘The Milagro Beanfield War’ when an old man is talking to his dead friend. He is asked why does he talk to the dead? It’s because they’re the onlyt ones wiht the time. ….. also, I think it wsa the singer James Taylor said something about if you talk to god that’s acceptable, you are divine but if you get an answer they will lock you up for being crazy.

    • shovonc
      September 11, 2012

      I won’t let you know what he said to me then. Thanks for reading.

  3. meesha
    September 10, 2012

    The Clint Eastwood reference was a nice touch – made this a very topical reply from ‘uncle’

    • shovonc
      September 10, 2012

      Uncle means well, but he is not very well informed. The reference was thanks to reader Steve, who commented above. Uncle changed his answer.

  4. wheelerwrite
    September 11, 2012

    Very nice.

  5. keeper @ chindia-alert
    September 21, 2012

    Cha,cha Shovonc – I gather you’re Indian, of course. But your sense of humour is more British, if I may be so bold as to suggest. Have you spent time in the UK?

    BTW – I was born in Shanghai, but spend my childhood and uni years in Calcutta (Kharagpur. IIT); then moved to the West. Now I am in the UK.

    Keep replying! 😉

    • shovonc
      September 22, 2012

      Hi! Yep, Indian. I spent the first ten years of my life in Yorkshire, but it’s not their fault.

      • keeper @ chindia-alert
        September 24, 2012

        Yorkshire’s loss. BTW – have you been invited to play cricket for Yorkshire? I gather that is the right of every born Yorkshireman.

  6. shovonc
    September 25, 2012

    My mum made me play rugby wearing woolly mittens. My sporting career never recovered.

  7. windhound
    September 30, 2012

    Humour greatly appreciated.

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