Macchars don’t wear sweaters

Bhatti Ustad Part 2

Posted on: May 2, 2010

Continued from Bhatti Ustad Part 1

Suresh, who I have briefly introduced to you (and who deserves many a page to be dedicated to him), was Bhatti’s cousin and lived just across Bhatti’s flat on the same floor on the same house. They weren’t really cousins in the biological sense of the word, but more because of some complex village lineage linkup. Suresh tried explaining it to me a few times, about how his distant uncle belonged to the same village as Bhatti’s mother’s sister, but nod as i did, i didnt really get it. Maybe it was simply because they had lived across each other’s homes almost all their lives.

The two families displayed an incredible symmetry. I swear i am not lying, almost geometrically, both families had a mother and father each (but of course); Bhatti and Suresh, who were of the same age and in the same class; Shanti and Raji, a sister each after them of the same age and in the same class; Manju and Sunta, a sister each after that in chronology, of around the same age and in the same class; and finally Naresh and Anil, the youngest brothers each in either family, who of course, were in the same class in the same school.

How they managed this completely perplexes me, though various theories can be proposed (this was pre-cloning days). The symmetry did not stop here, as both families had exactly similar houses on either side of the stairwell, with one double bed each, one TV, one Gas, one Gas cooker, and one Desert Cooler each. Suresh would often complain to me of Bhatti’s family indulging in competitive tactics, matching Suresh’s family gadget for gadget. I think there was some truth in his accusations.

Is it a wonder then, when my father tried to explain the concept of symmetry to me, I caught on quick?

4 Responses to "Bhatti Ustad Part 2"

Is ke peeche kuch conspiracy bhee to ho sakti?

A beautifully written piece and must have been a source of merriment over their neighbourly decades. Proves beyond reasonable doubt that nature has a sense of humor.

Incidently this type of symmetry is close to what is called an “isomorphism” in mathematics. Loosely, an isomorphism is a mapping f from a “group” of objects A to another B which preserves structure, namely

f:A to B: f(pq)=f(p)f(q) for all p,q in A

Very interesting reads – all of these from the start to the finish.

brings the 90s alive.

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