And Taare Zameen Par follows me around…

Yesterday, through fluke and a mischance, actually had a spare day in which to fill with mindless gossiping with friends over a cup of piping hot cappuchino, yummy grilled sandwiches and mindless shopping. So there we were. Three moms. Moi, mom to one, and still looking like pregnancy weight needed to be shed hasta la vista. Another friend, also mom to one, the same age as mine own, lithe, sleek and flat bellied like one of them Egyptian belly dancers, and the third, mom to two, with the second one barely having popped out a few months ago, back to being sleek and lithe and flat bellied, and having the good sense to do a fitness instructor’s course during her nursing days. Unlike lazy moi who considers running around only offspring to be the only form of exercise worth doing.

Yes, yes, yes. Felt like the fat ugly friend of the group all over again, and had I closed my eyes, it could have been me, blast from the past, back in the college canteen, being the fat funny one, in outdated clothes, and unmatched shoes, while the rest of the girls were getting the glad eyes from the hunks around. Then one of the duo pipes up, “You know, you look exactly like Tisca Chopra?”

I did a double take. I would have preferred a Jennifer Lopez or a Jennifer Gartner, or even a Madhuri Dixit, or even Malaika Arora, but was quite flattered with the Tisca Chopra. Hell, I even have the rapscallion reduction xerox of Ishaan Awasthi minus the bunny teeth back at home. And yes, I have the furrowed worried harassed permanent expression set on my face. I sometimes fail to recognise self if catch glimpse in the mirror of self laughing.

Anyway, that got buried under more urgent gossip about who was divorcing whom, and who was seeing whom, and who had got some work done, and such like. A spot of retail therapy followed, and I staggered with my load into a rickshaw to get back home. Yes, yes. The driver is absconding. Am reduced to toting my carcass around in public transport, much to the horror of self. Sat in empty rickshaw and commandeered driver of said vehicle to take me to my destination. The chappie, in the manner of all autodrivers, started rickshaw off at a rapid trot which meant no brakes, zigzagging to avoid traffic and all the while looking at me strangely in the rear view mirror. Ever felt creepy in the pit of your stomach? That was what was happening. Then he turned his head right around, a 180 degree swivel while the rick was going forth at top speed in Mumbai traffic. I shrieked in fear and inched further into the leatherite, cracked and peeling seat. Painful memories of dislocated fingers from previous rickshaw accident on highway still fresh in memory made me brave, and I hollered sternly, “Kya hai? Aage dekhke chalaon. Nahi to gadi rokon.” He laughed, an evil laugh, that revealed lines of really bad, paanstained teeth. “Nahin madam. Hum aapko theekh se dekh rahen the. Aap Aamir Khan saab ko boliye, bahut hi badhiya picture thi. Aapne bhi badiya acting ki thi. Woh munna tho bahut he badmaaas hai….” He looked ahead momentarily to get his bearings and breath back. “Bahut hi badiya picshur thi!” Eh? Tisca, you have one autodriver fan. By default.

What do you think? Do we match any? The same comparison twice in the span of a single day really has me flummoxed.

 Edited to add: Asked the husband said question to be met with quizzical look and raised eyebrow which suggested “Dont flatter yourself.” That settled the debate.


About Kiran Manral

Kiran Manral published her first book, The Reluctant Detective in 2011. Since then, she has published eight books across genres till date. Her books include romance and chicklit with Once Upon A Crush (2014), All Aboard (2015), Saving Maya (2017); horror with The Face at the Window (2016) and nonfiction with Karmic Kids (2015), A Boy’s Guide to Growing Up (2016) and True Love Stories (2017). Her short stories have been published on Juggernaut, in magazines like Verve and Cosmopolitan, and have been part of anthologies like Chicken Soup for the Soul, Have a Safe Journey (2017) and Boo (2017). Her articles and columns have appeared in the Times of India, Tehelka, DNA, Yowoto, Shethepeople, New Woman, Femina, Verve, Elle, Cosmopolitan, Conde Nast Traveller, DB Post, The Telegraph, the Asian Age, iDiva, TheDailyO and more. She was shortlisted for the Femina Women Awards 2017 for Literary Contribution. She is a TEDx speaker and a mentor with Vital Voices Global Mentoring Walk 2017.
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18 Responses to And Taare Zameen Par follows me around…

  1. Cee Kay says:

    Well, you know what? I haven’t seen you in person (and different pics I have seen of are so different from one another that I don’t know what you really look like) but I HAVE seen Trisca (in TZP – where else!). And I must say I found her really attractive. A dignified kind of attractive. (I know, I know I’m not making much sense. It is past midnight afterall)


  2. Pingback: And Taare Zameen Par follows me around… | Jennifer Lopez Celebrity News

  3. chandni says:

    How can I say just looking at this one pic in the header??

    but if auto wallah says so, it must be 😀


  4. Pingback: Jennifer Lopez » And Taare Zameen Par follows me around…

  5. dipali says:

    We need more photooo:)
    But TC is one attractive lady:)
    Methinks you are too, whether or not you resemble her:)
    Now quit fishing, madamji, or we’ll have to pack you off to Aamir Khan saab for his next flick.


  6. childwoman says:

    Quite a few years back I had seen tisca chopra in one of teleserials on zee tv or something, and in other ads as well…and funnily i always thought you looked like her….really…but then I thought since she was not so famous then, you wouldnt know whom I am talking about….well, now there you go..YOu look like her..and thats a good thing, because she is beautiful elegant and graceful,,,no wait…that’s you … 🙂


  7. Kiran Manral says:

    Ceekay: Yup. Dignified. I like the sound of being a dignified beauty as opposed to being an undignified beauty. LOL>

    Chandni: Yup, the autowallah must be right.

    Dipali: Nope not fishing, just in absolute shock that this strange thing should happen on the same day twice. And has never happened before, nor since.

    Childwoman: Tara you are so good for my ego….


  8. sushma says:

    hey hey..when I saw this particular pic of yours, I felt that too, even before TZP.. I thought you looked vaguely familiar and kind of pulled out my remaining hair on the scalp to narrow it down to Tisca.. yes you are beautiful inside out for me..


  9. DotMom says:

    you are beautiful. Unless the picture you put up has extreme photoshop work done on it 🙂 the Bollywood illetrate self had to google Tisca. And man.. she is attractive, but not more than you. No WAY.


  10. M says:


    Your picture on the banner does show a resemblance – so woohoo! 🙂



  11. alka says:

    The only pic I’ve seen of you is up there on that banner and I sure as hell won’t argue with an autorickshaw-wallah. Bask in the glory Kiran. Tisca is beautiful. Maybe the next time you can scribble an autograph to such “fans”. Ah!! The glory!!


  12. Wow!! Now that you mention it..!! 🙂

    Yeah next time dole out the autographs!!


  13. chandni says:

    but the important point is, she IS very pretty 🙂


  14. kiranmanral says:

    M: LOL. I thought it was the harassed look we had in common.

    alka, sunshine: I must remember to sign the fake name and be arrested for being an imposter.

    chandni: Yeahhhhhhhhhbaby! LOL.


  15. Kakali says:

    The autodriver & your friends are right on. You do look a lot like Ishaan’s mom, I didn’t know her name though.


  16. d says:

    That pic on the header does resemble Tisca! Agree with auto driver..


  17. Big Zed says:

    Tisca eh?!
    Now I’ve got to see the movie.


  18. Ronak says:

    You would’t believe it, but that was the first thing that I thought, when I opened ur blog and saw the header pic…


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