Wednesday, March 09, 2005


I was brought up in a place called Oragadam - a place not many I am sure would know, and would know is in Chennai. Most of the men who live there are vested various powers in the municipal corporation's day today activities, or are shop vendors or simply slum dwellers. But the generation 10 years elder to me were very entreprenaurial - they conducted cricket tournaments, started Film star fan clubs and burst a lot of crackers for common good on occasions other than diwali.
On the same lines, they planned to start a gym because they were literally appalled by the health standards of youngsters in the street. So, they bought this space next to the first left you see when you start walking from the bus stop and built a small room, with some dumbbells, bench presses and everything. Now came the final question of naming the gym - Terminator 2 was a rage back then and Arnold what-ever-his-last-name-is was a great inspiration. So, they decided to name their gym after him. There was just this one minor, small hitch - they had no idea what his last name exactly was, or any clue to how to spell it. There was no internet to help them nor could they go out and ask anyone. Finally, they decided not to deter from their inspiration, chose to adapt it to the literary standards of Oragadam and hence for the next couple of years the board in front of Oragadam's first gym read.

Arnold Sivanesan Jim
Propreitor, Ebi Muthuvel, Oragadam, Chennai

Of course there was a cutout of Arnold with his flexed muscles so that people don't mistake Arnold Sivanesan to a srilankan news reader. Should admit that, the "Jim" was a roaring success transforming rookies like us into sylvesters and sarath kumars. If ever you have seen how I look, you would have some idea :)


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