Mohapatra (not his real name), our Procurement Manager, was sitting in the cafeteria, trying to open a small bottle of Nimbooz. The bottle cap just wouldn't turn. The boss walked in and took a chair at Mohapatra’s table and said conversationally. “What Mohapatra, you cannot even open a small bottle!!”
Mohapatra stopped his struggle with the bottle, stared at the Boss from behind soda glasses and said, “You think I cannot open this bottle!! I can pick this table up with one hand!!”
“I am sure you can,” said the Boss trying to change the subject realizing that Mohapatra had not understood the friendly jibe. But it was too late.
“I was wrestling champion in school you know!” continued Mohapatra. “I won the trophy every year.”
“That’s great” said the Boss looking a little wary. He got up.
“Sit down.” said Mohaptra pulling him down to the chair.
“This cap is fused with the bottle” said Mohapotra holding up the bottle. “Otherwise I would have opened it just like that!!’
“I am sure you could have. I was joking Patra...” said the Boss getting up again.
“Sit…” said Mohaptra gesturing to the chair. The Boss sat down resignedly and looked around for help. But we were too busy snickering to be of any help.
“You think I am weak?” asked Mohaptra leaning forward and looking intently at the Boss.
“No Patra. I was just pulling your leg….” trailed the Boss helplessly.
“I challenge you to a match of wrestling!” said Mohaptra staring at the Boss without taking his eyes off his face.
“I am sure you will win heh heh” laughed the Boss nervously.
“I will win and show you!” said Mohapatra wagging his finger.
“Err no need of all that. I am sure you are a champ…” said the Boss edging slowly off his seat.
“Don’t ever doubt me again Boss.” said Mohapatra shaking his head shaking his head from side to side.
“I won’t” said the Boss relieved that the standoff was coming to an end.
“Yes, you shouldn’t!” said Mohapatra looking satisfied.
“See you then....” said the Boss getting up and walking way quickly.
“Boss!” called Mohapatra.
The Boss stopped, looked around warily and queried gingerly “Yes?”
“Can you open this bottle for me?” said Mohapotra thrusting the Nimbooz bottle at him.
We were too busy rolling on the floor laughing to see what happened next. But the group at the other table saw the Boss open the bottle, keep it on the table without a word and walk away.
Mohapatra picked up the bottle and drank nonchalantly like nothing had happened.