Tuesday, October 8, 2013




1. Please read this story only if you have a sense of humour. This is a spoof, a yarn, just for a laugh, no offence meant to anyone, so please take it with a pinch of salt.
2. This story is a work of fiction. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve (all rights reserved)


“A” was a most ambitious naval officer.

His sole aim was to become an Admiral.

He moved heaven and earth and did everything possible to achieve his objective.

Those days the first promotion board was for the rank of Commander.

As his promotion board approached, the fear of supersession made him highly anxious and tense.

Soon the promotion board was over but the results were not yet declared and he eagerly waited for the promotion signal.

This excruciating wait almost drove him crazy.

He was hearing conflicting rumours.

This made him so tense and stressed-out, that his shipmates called us over and told us: “Hey, you guys are his friends. He is so bloody tense about his promotion. He is almost on the verge of a nervous breakdown. I think you chaps better speak to him and pep him up a bit.

We will do that,” we said.

The promotion signal is likely to be released tonight. The bugger is so nervous and frantic that he may even commit suicide if he doesn’t get promoted. He is all alone – his wife and kids are away for their summer holidays. I think it is better someone is with him to make sure he doesn’t go berserk and do something stupid if his name is not on the list,” said a shipmate of “A”.

In the evening we reached his house with a bottle of rum.

We did not have to open our bottle, since “A” was already drinking to soothe his nerves.

“Why are you worried? With your outstanding performance, you are sure to get promoted,” we said.

“What bloody outstanding performance? Someone told me that the buggers in Delhi are manipulating the list. That’s why the signal is delayed. I hope it comes tonight,” he said and downed his glass of rum.

His voice had a note of desperation.

I filled up his glass and said, “With your sea service, they cannot ignore you.”

“Sea service? My foot! All this sea-report crap is bullshit. Look at the number of guys who get their sea-time waived and all of them get promoted. Someone told me that my name is being pushed out of the list to accommodate some bloody influential landlubber pen-pusher sitting in Delhi. I am convinced of one thing now – never go to sea if you want to get promoted,” he said bitterly.

“Let’s go out for dinner,” I said, trying to change the subject. Maybe an outing would do him a bit of good.

“No. I am not feeling okay. If you want you can go ahead,” he said.

“Okay. I’ll sit with you and give you company. He’ll go and get us some dinner. What do you want – Biryani from Olympia or Butter Chicken from Delhi Darbar?”

I am in no mood to eat. You get anything you want,” he said.

As my buddy left to get food, on the way out, I whispered to him to go to the signal centre and find out about the promotion signal – when was it likely to come?

We, “A” and me, kept drinking.

“A” was quite drunk now.

It was more than two hours, almost midnight, but my buddy had still not returned.

I feared the worst.

We kept drinking in silence, losing all sense of time

Suddenly my buddy arrived.

He seemed overjoyed.

The promotion signal had arrived.

“A” had been promoted.

On hearing the good news, “A” asked, “are you sure my name is on the list?”

“Of course your name is very much there. I knew you would have doubts, so I have got a copy of the signal for you – see for yourself.”

“A” kept staring at the signal, at his name.

All his pent up tension seemed to dissolve and relief was visible on his face.

It was time to leave him alone to savour his moment of triumph.

But “A” would not let us go, “No. No. Wait. Don’t go. The good news calls for a drink. I’ve kept a bottle of Royal Salute for this occasion.”

“Whisky? After so much Rum?” I asked.

“Come on guys. It doesn’t matter. Today is a special day. Let’s celebrate.”

It took just two hours for us to polish off the bottle of Royal Salute.

“It’s nearly 3 in the morning. Time to leave,” I said.

“A” looked at me with hazy eyes and said, “Thanks for coming.”

“Do you know why we actually came?” my buddy asked, lurching drunkenly.

“Shut up,” I said.

“No. Tell me. Tell me why you came,” stuttered “A”, his speech blurred with intoxication.

“They told us you would commit suicide if you didn’t get promoted,” my buddy blurted out.

A looked at us and said, “Well, I don’t know about me. But one thing is sure. My wife would have committed suicide if I hadn’t got my promotion.” 

What? Your Wife? Your wife would have committed suicide had you missed your promotion?” we asked in surprise.

Yes. My wife would have been so totally devastated if I had been passed over for promotion that she would have surely committed suicide. She had worked so hard for my promotion. She would not have been able to bear the agony of my supersession…”

After uttering this insightful truth, “A” passed out on the sofa, happily drunk.

Copyright © Vikram Karve 
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved. 

All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2013. All Rights Reserved

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Did you like this story?  
I am sure you will like the 27 short stories from my recently published anthology of Short Fiction COCKTAIL
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Foodie Book:  Appetite for a Stroll
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About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer and blogger. Educated at IIT Delhi, IIT (BHU) Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and an anthology of short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional  and academic research papers in journals and edited in-house journals and magazines for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing and blogging. Vikram Karve lives in Pune India with his family and muse - his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal: http://karvediat.blogspot.com
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