Madras Musings, written in Chinese, courtesy Google

The Man from Madras Musings has never known how to react when people tell him they watch his YouTube videos chiefly to relax and eventually fall asleep. MMM is forever plagued with doubts – is it good that an unintended outcome of his presentations is that they are good soporifics? Or should he pep things up a little so that people remain awake at least till the end of each episode? But that MMM may have to soon come to a decision regarding what needs to be done about it was made manifest to him when he found emails regarding mattresses in his inbox. There are people going to bed in China with Madras Musings.

Going to bed in China with Madras Musings

As regulars of this column are aware, there is an increasing readership for MM in China. Not a day passes when we do not receive fan mails from there offering to sell pumps, valves, cylinders, wire mesh, medical products to improve the aesthetics of our body parts, and also standing wheelchairs.

For some reason, MM seems to be a hit with women in China and the correspondents rejoice in names such as Lucy, Helen and Susie. But then numbers are evidently going up for now it is Angelina who adds herself to the list and she writes on a fairly delicate subject. Her message is as follows –

Dear Editor
I noticed you are in the field of bedding/mattress/pillows/seating industry……
I would love to connect and see if there will be any way we can support each other. 
Or can we be  your back up supplier? No disturb, we only share energy!

Now MMM is at a loss on how to reply. Firstly, there is always the fear that his good lady, also known as She Who Must Be Obeyed may discover this correspondence. She is often spoken of in domestic circles as the Chief Who Eventually Discovers All, and so MMM needs to be doubly careful.

The next aspect is, how did Angelina discover that we at MM are in the bedding/mattress/pillows/seating industry? Yes to be sure, some of our readers may lie down while reading MM, others may recline on pillows while yet another lot may be seated but how does that qualify for the magazine to claim to be in the business of bed essentials? Next, how does Angelina think MMM can support her and vice versa? It is all too embarrassing to contemplate, especially when read in conjunction with the rest of the message about back up supplies and sharing energy. It brings the blush of shame to MMM’s damask cheek.

Chinese Infiltration in Madras Musings

MMM is of the view that something will soon have to be done on the China question. Should we allow them to infiltrate this magazine? They already seem to be hovering around point zero, and as in the case of this latest message, resorting to unprovoked firing, at least of the imagination. Perhaps the time has come to start a Mandarin version of this paper; should it be called Manchurian Musings?

How to keep people awake over MM?

The bigger issue still remains – how to keep viewers and the readership awake till the end of the episode/article. But then, MMM can only blame himself for this contretemps. When he could convert a column titled Short and Snappy into Long and Loquacious, anyone would be tempted to go to sleep. And so, if you are awake up to this point, you are exceptional and deserve congratulations for sheer endurance. And may the Chinese not enter into correspondence with you.

My book on Chennai can be ordered here

This article appeared in Madras Musings dated November 1, 2023 and can be read here

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