Why Do We Keep Strangling Life/ Wound This Earth/ Crucify Its Soul/ Though It's Plain To See/ This World Is Heavenly

The airlines which I applied to is getting on my nerves by the day. They keep calling up every alternate week for more casual photographs. By now, they should have an album of me!

And yet another photograph of a prospective groom. By now I should have been used to it. The whole grind I mean, of seeing the snap, deciding on whether I like him or not (on the basis of that scrap that says what all he is doing at the moment and what his interests in life are) and then having my parents call up anxiously to know my answer...How I wish there could be a miracle and I would be in the middle of a Notting Hill like romance. Or any kind of romance actually.

Not that I can do anything on my own. I have joined a new gym where the morning trainer is lanky and cute. So I can be caught very often casting furtive looks in his direction. I guess checking out a trainer is kind of tacky, but I have good reason. He resembles the coach in Bend It Like Beckham.

The evening trainer is an upcoming cricketer who is a very enthusiastic creature. Whenever he sees me cycling or cross-training, the words that come out of him are: "Lage raho India lage raho." Quite a chirpy fellow that.

Enough about trainers. The dark side of my life says that I am becoming too snappy. I guess I have to curb my tongue. On Saturday, I was in the bus waiting to get down at a stop, when this man with a beard and pan stained teeth asked in a surly manner whether I was planning to deboard. Even after I replied in the affirmative very clearly, he shoved me hard and went ahead. So I naturally said loudly: "Asshole".

He whirled with his beard almost in my face and challenged me vehemently: "What you means?" While I had quite a few things to say in reply, I was suddenly struck dumb by the scary look on his face. And I know precisely why he got away with it. Because he was a Muslim.

I have never felt it so strongly till it actually happened to me. The kin of those dying in these terrorist activities all over the world -- I wonder how they feel. And here we have people living in denial. As VK puts it, human right groups which insist that terrorists should not be hanged.

I know it is true that had it been just another guy, he would have heard quite a few things. At that moment, I felt it so strongly and felt so helpless at the same time because it would have probably flared into a communal issue. Knowing what happens nowadays you can never be sure about anything.

I was watching The Path to 9/11 on Zee Studio yesterday. It was mind boggling -- the brilliant and educated minds that go into the creation of such plots. Till date I think I can't believe that a bunch of people could fly aeroplanes bang into some buildings. They have successfully created a world where you can't go shopping, watching a movie or move around without thinking twice. It is one where even carrying a lipstick has been made unsafe. I wonder why?


Essar said...

Will yuo get over the trainer for Chrissake! whats wrong with you? Ok, we are going to TCs next week, enough is enough.

thalassa_mikra said...

AB, I wonder if you actually thought through that post.

I recall a few such encounters in Delhi, and people get aggressive and menacing in such public arguments, because it is the best defence (it worked in this case), not because of their religion.

Please go board a Haryana Roadways bus and see if you don't get the exact same reception, regardless of whether the protagonist is Muslim or not. Or better yet, board a suburban train in Bengal and see what kind of menacing glares you get from good ol' Hindu Bengali bhadralok when you fight over seats.

If you stopped yourself from arguing it out because he was Muslim, well that's your choice. I know I wouldn't, and most people wouldn't. If there's anyone who's being hypersensitive about religion here, it's only you.

And I'm still shaking my head over the extrapolation of this trivial incident to a statement about terrorists and 9/11. Were you simply trying to find a hook to do a 9/11 post?

thalassa_mikra said...

I'm sorry if I sound a bit combative in the comment. That wasn't my intention at all. I'm just a bit puzzled by the post, and hopefully you'd clarify it a bit more.

AB said...

Essar: Right!!! As if we will. Let's see:0)

Thalassa: I did think quite a bit. And no way was it a link to relate it to the 9/11 thing. It just kind of came through in a tumble.

Maybe it was my perception. But I felt it right there and then. And I don't usually put instincts to fault.

And let me clarify, it's not that I regard all Muslims as evil, if you get those vibes from my post. Because I know really nice people and moreover I was born in a Muslim country like Oman.

It's fine by me even if you sound combative. You felt strongly about something and you said it.

Salonlover said...

Oh my god. I was passing by and your post caught my eye and I agree completely with Thalassa.
Also, it should interest you to know that the docudrama (it is NOT a documentary)"The Path to 9/11" popularizes right-wing myths by exaggerating Clinton's failures and Bush's successes, depicting events that NEVER happened. For instance, scenes which depict Clinton administration officials allowing Osama bin Laden to escape capture or death for diplomatic, political and legal reasons. Please read www.salon.com for more on this

AB said...

salonlover: Why the oh my god? You have your opinion and I have mine.
But brilliant and educated minds do go into creation of such plots. Can you deny that?

So Path to 9/11 was a docudrama, but 9/11 wasn't. And reality was infinitely more terrifying than any drama put together by the right wing!