“Have you watched The Martian yet?”
I used to be asked this same question, the first thing every morning by my colleague Jeet like a ritual.
Since he barely knew me then, he was probably unaware that the last movie I HAD watched in a cinema was four years ago.
Yes, I am one of 0.001% Middle-class city Indians who don’t spend their weekends at the movies.
Jeet had watched “The Martian” TWICE in the week before and was so impressed by it all that he used to tell anyone who would listen what a great movie it was, how Matt Damon just kept getting better and better and how inspiring it was and all that.
“I LOVED it” he would say empathically. “It was better than all his previous movies. He has acted SO well. It just can’t get better”
After his powerful speech, he had probably expected me to charge to the nearest theatre and my failing to do so seemingly disappointed him more and more each day. This continued for a week (A week during which he still talked non-stop about the movie) when I finally informed him that I only go to the cinema when I judge the movie’s graphics will not be done justice by a small screen at home OR if I am convinced that I will like the movie.
I proceeded to tell him that the last movie I had seen was in 2012.
“And the movie, my friend”, I said, “was Alvin and the Chipmunks 3”.
I think he went in shock. He instantly sobered and told me (something he didn’t tell me before) that the reason he liked the movie was primarily because this was about an astronaut who didn’t give up when his comrades left behind on another planet and used his ingenuity to survive which included growing potatoes on Mars. (In other words, that it was indeed a good movie,the graphics were well made and it was so uplifting that I would like it).
The morning ritual stopped after that- he did still ask a few times but with a smirk that expected the same answer I gave him. (He didn’t stop gushing about the movie though).
However,the unbelievable happened and eventually it DID convince me to watch it and one fine Friday I showed up at his desk with my tickets.
“Tell me if you like it”, he smiled. “I’m beginning to get scared that you won’t and on Monday morning you’ll yell at me for making you watch it”.
Well, that didn’t happen.
I absolutely loved it and so did my family whom I watched it with. Matt Damon was splendid and I too found it very motivating which is what I told Jeet on Monday to his delight.
“There was just one problem , though”, I told him. “The end was a bit too far-fetched…Commander Lewis tries to catch him while he’s travelling at a speed of <I-can’t-even-calculate> in SPACE?? Too much!”
“No, no. It wasn’t TOO far-fetched. Just a little unlikely”, he replied.
“Oh please…I loved the movie- but playing Catch in space? Now there’s where I draw the line!”
For those who haven’t seen the movie, in the last scene, his fellow crewmen return on a rescue mission and since they cannot actually land on Mars again, Damon is asked to leave the planet and enter space where they would collide with him. Or Catch him.
This was literally, how the scene rolled: The Commander was standing outside the shuttle in space, her arms outstretched ready to receive a flying Matt Damon.
It was funny if you ask me.
The next morning while I was on my way to the cafeteria for breakfast, he bumped into me and told me that it was his birthday.
“Oh, it’s your birthday too?” , I said.
“Yeah, it’s my cousin’s birthday and Sehwag’s..”
“Alright, I’ll see you later then”
And I went on my way.
“You didn’t WISH me, you know”
“Haha. Happy Birthday!”.
And then I was really on my way.
While I was walking I started to think. I suddenly was inspired to give him a nice, small gift.
Undecided about what that would be, I wandered into my office stores to check I could buy.
Well, I didn’t get anything nice, small and READYMADE but staying there long enough, staring at everything gave me a brilliant idea.
And this is exactly how the rest of the day went:
I bought a small gift bag, a packet of coloured pens and the ‘actual gift’.
Then I set to work.
This was how the bag was originally.
My idea was to depict Earth and Mars on it- I did this by using the yellow and purple balls on the bag.
I coloured and smudged it with the coloured pens I had bought. This was a tedious task and took me an hour of sitting in the canteen.
Next, I wrote what I had to.
Thirdly, ( I wouldn’t have been able to give it without this icing on the cake) I drew a diagram of C.Lewis catching the Martian in Space 😀
This is the gift bag all ready.
What do you think? Did you like it? Jeet absolutely LOVED it. He laughed so much.
Do write in the comment section and tell me how you liked it.
Oh and the gift- any guesses to what it was?
Click here to find out if you were right.