Cot on the Couch
Subbu was over the moon Ive been invited to a talk show, he said It looks like my political career is taking off, dont you think
Subbu was over the moon. ‘I’ve been invited to a talk show,’ he said. ‘It looks like my political career is taking off, don’t you think?’
I congratulated him. Only the most happening people were invited to talk shows. Subbu was going places. ‘What’s the show?’ I asked.
‘Cot on the Couch,’ said Subbu unable to hold himself. He was very excited.
‘Oh wow, that’s a bold show,’ I said. ‘But you better watch out. That host asks tricky questions that land you in trouble. A couple of upcoming celebrities got their careers snipped in the bud. Now they are neither up nor coming.’
‘Nipped?’ asked Subbu.
‘No. Snipped,’ I said. ‘Painful.’
‘What kind of questions can he trip me up on?’ asked Subbu.
‘Hmmm, let’s say for example he asks you simple stuff like, do you like flowers? What will you say?’
‘I will say, yes of course. I love flowers,’ said Subbu. ‘We don’t want to look like fools on talk shows. We want to talk. Confidently.’
‘Great. Then he might say, what do you like about flowers?’
Subbu answered quickly. ‘I will say I like them because they are soft and smell nice and make me feel good.’
‘Then he says, so you like things that are soft, smell nice and make you feel good huh. Then he asks, do you pluck flowers often?’
‘I will say yes of course,’ said Subbu. ‘What kind of a man would deny that?’
‘Then he asks if you pluck all kinds of flowers,’ I continued. ‘And you may say you’re great at plucking flowers. You confess you have a collection of flowers at home. Once you see a flower you cannot stop yourself. Of course, of course, he says, you young hot-blooded fellows are like that.’
‘So good na,’ said Subbu beaming at me. ‘I must be coming across like a sensitive, honest person who is clear about what he wants.’
‘Next, he asks, do you like only soft flowers or hard flowers too? You may wonder what hard flowers are, but by now you are feeling like you’re an expert on flowers and you say yes. He says with wide eyes, oh, you love all types of flowers soft, hard…hmmm.’
Subbu’s face was flush with excitement. I continued.
‘So, he says, so you hit on both huh? Do you hit on them singly or in groups? By now you cannot stop.
You say all kinds of stuff you never meant to say like you are in some kind of a trance. You claim stuff that never happened. Just when you think you’re going overboard and want to pull back he gives you a gift. Thanks for being ‘Cot on the Couch’, he says. He gets great TRPs. You get a small gift.’
‘I also get popular,’ said Subbu happily.
‘But for all the wrong reasons! Everyone from the horticulture department to the culture department will come after you for making derogatory and perverted statements about flowers. Once it gets on social media, your party will sack you and appoint a ten-member committee to verify your innermost fantasies about flowers. Your political career is snipped before it could flower.’
‘But the Committee will know I was fibbing,’ said Subbu relieved. ‘I am safe.’
‘You could be sacked for lying. Or for misconduct. Or both.’
‘So, what should I do?’ asked Subbu in panic.
I thought about it. Seriously.
‘Forget that gift. Don’t talk. Doesn’t matter if it’s a talk show, don’t open your mouth. If you talk, it might hurt you in places you never expected.’
‘Ouch,’ said Subbu.
That’s right I said. ‘Cot and bowled.’