Looking out of the window you make a casual remark- "It's going to rain heavily today evening" Chances are 2 times out of 10 someone who hears this replies "Oh no it will not", with such a tone that almost implies that it was originally your idea that it rain heavily. And that by disagreeing, they will prevent your supreme show of superhuman powers of nature control by their sheer will power. They are the "Chronic Disagreers".. The strange sub-species of homo sapiens, whose only purpose of existence is to disagree. I shall refer to them as c.d henceforth. You will have greater pleasure reading this if you substitute c.d for something else throughout (Yeah.. the word that has "dress" in it)
My association with c.ds goes long back... My doctor disagreed with me when I attempted my first bawl just after birth. My teachers disagreed with me when I started attending school (Both very unnecessary I opine) And then few years ago I was discussing something with a friend, and well... We disagreed on a particular point. Very recently that same topic was repeated with the same friend (yeah.. I recycle conversations once in 2 years) We disagreed at the same point as earlier.. Funnily though, this time around I subscribed to the other guys views (remembering and repeating it to avoid a showdown) and he still disagreed!! I would have rationalised his behaviour perhaps, thinking that he has come around to my earlier view in the grand scheme of things we are all a part of, only if he hadn't exhibited the symptoms of being a c.d over all those years I've known him..
This illness perhaps stems from the innate need to be one up on the other person. Especially when you can have the thrill of disagreeing and being successful at that with a fellow of such great intellectual capabilities as myself. Really.. People cannot resist disagreeing with me. Case in point, I am not spared even by auto-drivers... A few weeks ago I happened to find myself on an auto (I found myself there as in - I have no recollection of how or where I hailed and occupied that 3 wheeled wagon) It was raining.. Or perhaps it had stopped raining. Doesn't matter for my narration, anyway, so feel free to assume either.
The auto passed/ ferried across a small pond (which I had never noticed all my life) at the base of the Richmond circle flyover. A few other vehicles struggled to get past that pond (my own vehicle had comedown with flu at the sight of an even smaller water body previous day- which led my present situation). Auto driver seeing me looking at other poor vehicles with concern said,
"Nodi saar, bere autogella coil-ge neer seerkondre ashte. Naan coil-ge protection haaksiddini" (Or something similar - I don't exactly remember)
I said, "Hmm.. So nimdu LPG naa??", simply because I thought he wanted to converse a little with me.. Bad mistake. I saw a flash of evil c.d grin before he replied ,"Ayyo.. LPG-ge addakke sambhanda ne illa" (in the same tone Vishnuvardhan said "Nange ninge innumele yava sambhanda noo illa" in a senti-film) Strike one!!
A few minutes later he again started talking about how due to heavy rains, a branch of a tree almost fell on the head of someone he knew.. I though it was my duty to make appropriate sounds again. So I said that one has to be careful during such rains. Uh oh... Another grin (disguised as a wry smile - but I tell you, it was a grin) "En hushaaru saar.. Grahachaara nettig illandre husharaagidru en prayojana"
He nonchalantly dismissed my mild suggestion that one should be especially carefully in such rains and just resign to our fate as decided by the nine planets..
Some miles later, he asked me the time. I said 8:30.. "Ayyo illa saar, adu 6:40!!!" Strike three and Out!!
Ok, I made the last one up. But twice bitten, third-time shy, I decided to have no more such conversations with this knowledgeable auto-driver.. Apparently he was satisfied with having the last say twice..
So what do you when a c.d marks you as a target? For one, you can try steering conversation towards a topic c.d is uncomfortable with.. Or if you are physically strong you can try to knock c.d out before he has the pleasure of disagreeing with you. If all fails, make a run for it! Get as far away as possible.. In the meanwhile I'll look around if some NGO offers a helpline to such hapless victims as myself. I need counseling, for the last attack has traumatised me pretty badly :(
Be careful, for they’re out to get you…