I was at the mall today.

Three young ladies with armfuls of clothes entered the trial room, leaving behind three young men, absorbed in their phones near the clothes-stands outside. These men were the approvers. Two of them seemed to be good multitaskers, jumping to attention the moment their names were called. The third was not.

His girl would peep out and try to get his attention by holding up her hand in an ‘ek-chutki sindoor’ kind-of gesture. Of course, that would not work. Then, she’d call out his name in a soft, musical tone,


You know – in that nice, Nagma-kind of loving call?

But, he’d continue to browse his phone. Then, the call would become louder, harsher,


You know –like Greg Chappel in a rage?

Incredibly, he’d still be unreachable!

Other men had, by now, helped their ladies select the outfit by making powerful closing statements like,

‘No, it’s not making you look fat.’

‘So what if you have a pink? This is a different pink.’

Finally, she stomped out and almost bit his head off!

That makes me think. Why don’t malls make the trial room experience more pleasurable for the buyers? There could be a light, you know, like outside Operation Theatres that would go off when the person is ready to sashay. A beep, maybe. And finally, if the approver does not respond, he could be given a mild electric shock via remote control?

Of course, if I were to take the approvers’ point of view, they’d say none of the above is needed. All we need are some pre-recorded messages in the trial room:

No, it’s not making you look fat.

So what if you have a pink? This is a different pink.

Yes, take them all.

I love you.