Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Prank calls

This is in the days when mobile phones were not common. Hell, even landlines were not present in all homes. I remember we didn’t still have a phone at home. My neighbour Mr. Joshi had one though and he was generally kind enough to pass a message if a friend  called. It was called a PP number. To this day, I don’t know what a PP number means. It was one of those terms that are loosely coined and no one really knows or cares about what it stands for.  And we’d have secret codes when we called each other. For eg., we’d let the phone ring once , hang up and then call again just to signal that it was one of us who was calling and the called party would quickly pick up the phone so that the parents wouldn’t know who was calling. But coming back to my story, my home didn't have a phone but Shee’s house did. In fact she had one line in her room.

There are some things that we do as kids that we think are fun but we realize much later that maybe it wasn’t so much fun for the other party.  This is one such thing I’m guilty of. When the Jackdaws got together for a night of fun together, this was one such "fun" thing we did. We’d call someone’s number (stranger or someone we didn’t like) in the middle of the night and make ridiculous jokes. We thought it was funny. The calls weren’t malicious, they were just meant to be a prank. But, I’d like to apologise to you if we ever called you in the middle of the night and your baby woke up or if the calls tormented you for many nights afterward. We’re really sorry!

But the one joke we had, I think it was funny. I don't think we came up with it. We must have heard it from somewhere. We’d call some number and after many rings, when someone would pick up in a sleepy voice, we’d ask:

“Kya aapka fridge chal raha hai? “(Is your refrigerator working?)

And the confused person would say yes. And then we’d say

“Pakad leejiye, varna bhag jaayega!” (Catch it now, or it might run away.)

And then we’d quickly hang up.

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