Sunday, December 6, 2009

Suffering Told

Most of us love to complain.Untold suffering seldom is, they say. Be it the boss or the systems and policies at the work place or the inefficient civic authorities or a disappointing movie ... the list is endless. While teaching class twelve I had to get students to write letters of complaint. It was disturbing that they were never expected to be taught to write a thank you note or a note of appreciation. No wonder we are a nation of whiners - see, I am whining about it now.

The pleasure that we get from grumbling is cathartic - you get the offending matter off your chest. The act also unites people who have had similar experiences. Many whine sessions involve people competing to relate the greater grievance. If someone actually addressed our grievances, and we had nothing to be miffed about, I think we would be really miffed!

Sometimes we simply want a sympathetic listener who will take our side. And some people just don't get that. I was once whining to colleagues, about my weight gain. 'Even a tiny piece of cake gets converted into a tyre on the waist,'I said. All I wanted to hear was that I looked good despite a tyre or two. That's when this chemistry teacher earnestly explains to me that energy intake to the body that is not used up is mostly stored as fat in the fat tissue.The conversion efficiency of food energy into physical power depends on the form of energy source - type of food and on the type of physical energy usage, that is which muscles are used, whether the muscle is used aerobically or anaerobically. He continued explaining that the efficiency of muscles is rather low: only a small percent of the food energy is converted into mechanical energy. This low efficiency is the result of only a tiny percentage efficiency of generating ATP (whatever that is!) from food energy, losses in converting energy from ATP into mechanical work inside the muscle, and mechanical losses inside the body. These depend on the type of exercise and the type of muscle fibers being used. He then began to draw - maybe the molecular structure of a fat tissue or something - but stopped on seeing my face.

I was in tears.

There are those who give advice and practical suggestions to overcome a problem. These creative problem solvers don't get it that the whiner isn't asking for a solution. At least my husband doesn't(get it). Like the time when on returning from a parent-teacher meeting, I went on about how exhausted I was, how belligerent the parents were, how useless it was to talk to them how I was the last to leave only to find the bus gone, how I had to wait for another vehicle,how other teachers' spouses had come to get them, how sore my throat felt and how bad my head ached. Without taking his eyes off the TV he suggested, 'Make some tea and take a Panadol. You will feel better.'

My sudden sullenness did bewilder him - after all, he had tried to help, hadn't he?

A little cribbing isn't a dangerous thing but sometimes it becomes excessive. Constant complaining must be some kind of disease and what's more, it can be catching. So beware.


ThalassicReverie said...

A tyre or two doesn't diminish thy beauty in the slightest. :)

'Make some tea and take a Panadol. You will feel better.'

He did help (with 'immobile kindness'), no ? :D

PS: I would be sullen too if I were you.

Anush said...

u must have real sharp retention power - the description of the biological process was clear :)

the only time i grumble is when am in a hall full of ppl asking really really irrelevant doubts to the speaker OR while reading poems written by lit grads :P

hey, wats the definition of cribbing? Dictionary tells me that it means to plagiarize!

AtomicGitten said...

Whine! whine! it's good for the heart!
The more you crib the more you part(with your irritation)
And the more part the better you feel
So sit and whine before every meal

(plus it'll majorly diminish appetite- or conversely you'll use up a lot of energy to crib thereby burning fat cells-so weight problem solved to :P )

Materialmom said...

I meant beauty in the physical sense :(, but really sweet of you to say that :)

It is all in the game. Men, at least mine, can't read between the lines and women, at least I convey in cryptic riddles. Both of us have learnt, over the years, to understand each other.


I knew someone would say that. Those were not his exact words, the description was referred content - I wanted to show that he spoke like a text book.
Reading poems by lit grads??/..... Aaah now I get it :)
you can add : OR when someone criticises Chennai :)

'cribbing' is a word of Indian origin just like 'cousin brother' or 'co-brother'.
Check out the following


That would be fitness in a whine bottle :)

Anush said...

oh wen someone criticises somethin close to the heart, the reaction isnt cribbing! Its all out war :P

and i wud do the same if someone were to belittle this blog :) its become my online home i say... am here daily :)

and cribbing seems to be some sort of "stable vice" in horses... hmmm, utterly confused :(

AtomicGitten said...

I guess that gives a whole new dimension to w(h)ine-addichu-fittava-ffying :P

Materialmom said...

Maybe that's why people defend their religions - because it is close to their heart

Welcome home :)It feels really nice to hear that. I am happy to keep updating, why don't u return the favour?
As for ppl belittling this blog, who would bother? I am not as dynamic or provoking as some others :)

'crib' - verb (copied from the link I gave you): To complain or grumble about something. To have a problem with something. To take issue with something.
She had a major crib about the fact that he handled the sales meeting badly. or I wish I could crib to someone about my problems but there's no use. or We were just having our daily crib-session about how we didn't get pay-hikes this year.


Then a little gripe will cut the p(a)unch

Materialmom said...

The key is so low, I can hardly hear YOU :)

Anush said...

i kno, ppl change :P

was meant only for u, so deleted the comment...

Materialmom said...