Monday, 26 November 2012

Of Mangoes and Men

These days the only times I am prompted to blog anything of any sort is when I have a headache. That, some experts have concluded, with knowing glances and revealing smirks, is the symptom of a busy life, and an extremely atrophied mind. However, and I contrive to bring value to my readers as well, of course, this blog will aim to transcend petty everyday matters and delve into the realms of the unknown. Yes, as stated before in my rather lengthy, convoluted and extremely pointless mission statement, I shall not blog about girls(comparing them to the sun or to the homeless stray next door as per the vicissitudes of life), or about socks or about girls and socks(sorry to disappoint you kinks out there). What this blog(it sounds kinda funny when you say it out loud too...blawwg) is meant to be about is not tedious parenthetical interruptions(contrary to appearances, damn it I did it again!!).

This is then, about the sort of blogs and articles that would make you cringe, including the ones that use italics for no good reason. There are millions of them coming up on Rahul Gandhi all of a sudden. The whole of the opposition seems divided on every damn issue, including whom to fire and whom to promote. And out of nowhere a third front seems to have emerged, almost like an apparition to haunt the hell out of our conscience and our elections. First things first, though, the Gandhi scion, so often derided for being..well a Gandhi scion, is not young. Yes he looks young, and girls find him attractive, but that still does not magically transport his biology to the past. Then again books that would make him out to be a great CEO, but not such a great politician would obviously gain traction with a public hungry for any sort of information on this one man who was supposedly born to lead the country.

We are a country of a billion people and change, and as far as the law of averages goes, a billion people would have to be as confused as hens in a coop. So we got smart, and we decided to appoint local leaders, assuming that while a billion people acting in their own respective interests concomitantly would bring chaos, a few elected representatives would bring order. And living in the era of information as it were, we assumed that we would be apprised of their everyday movements, and any conflicts of interest that might arise between our leaders and our wellbeing.

There isn't any conflict of interest of course, among our leaders, there's just...interest. Theirs, not ours. You see, these people might like to call themselves leaders, and that's brilliant because it gives them the swagger of a rockstar with the power of a monarch to boot. I have a different title for our representatives though, and that would be servant. You can bet your behind no one would sign up for that post, Servant of the Democracy....or Elected Servant to the Legislative Assembly. But, in short, that's what their job is SERVE. US.

These are the ideals espoused by one brave man, and his decision to form a party for the common people of India is undoubtedly a laudatory one. His idea is putative as well, and as far as most of us on the internet are concerned we are all sold on his promise to deliver a corruption free government to us, for us by us..and all that. We, the mango men of the country, are to be held solely responsible for the actions that affect our daily lives. And this is such a brilliant concept. So much better than a lady looking to ally with a former rival to bare her political teeth and ambition, so much better than news channels selectively filtering news, so much better than girls being jailed for expressing their opinion, and so much better, of course, than the circus of corruption that passes off for politics every day. This awe inspiring mango man brings to us a HOPE...for a better tomorrow, for his fellow mangoes.

Except... for who the mango men are in this nation. It's not us. It's not the sort of people who can read this blog and go..hmm..this idiot should be arrested and tried for sedition. It's not the sort of people either, who would write such blogs. The mango man of this country can't read this, and doesn't earn the sort of money to be able to afford a computer to be able to read this either. The mango men of this country don't give a damn about what corruption is, or how it works, or why it should be eradicated. This is why such a brilliant concept must also become street smart.

Give something to the mangoes, Mr. Kejriwal. To gain power, you must play the game first, and the only way changes can be made is through the requisite channels of power. There is no point in being short sighted or idealistic.

The mangoes are ripe enough for the taking, but you have to scale the tree first.

Friday, 9 November 2012


"Everyone has so much to say they talk talk talk their lives away...don't even hesitate"
-Slow Cheetah, Red Hot Chili Peppers

The Red Hot Chili Peppers are a fine place to start your study on philosophy, if at all you would want to start such a study(I can think of no reason other than anaemia or a concussion why you would). Anyway, ever since the days of their magnificently shambolic performances as Tony Flow and the Miraculously Majestic Masters of Mayhem and the unforgettable Cocks in Socks tour, the Peppers have been something of a bastion of morality, spirituality and the Talmud of how to let your hair down and get groovy. But then again so have most post modernist psychedelic punk funk bands of the era. Their whimsical lyrics followed up by their utter disregard to the rather banal putative interpretation of music allowed them to transcend barriers and lift us up into the realms of the unknown. Music wise of course, although you could argue that cocks in socks were pretty radical, even for the eighties.

Well back to reality, and if you would believe the naysayers, or was it the soothsayers? My Shakespeare clearly has not withstood the test of time, it is the rapture. Or the Ragnarok, or whatever you would like to believe heralds the End of Days. It is 2012, of course, and of course a certain Barack Obama has made himself rather popular on Twitter by dint of winning a second consecutive term as the most powerful man on Earth. He just about edged out Justin Beiber, who we must now believe is the second most powerful man(person) on Earth. Although he had help, Obama, not Beiber, in achieving his position because of a certain shapeshifter individual, who somehow managed to espouse the exact same ideals that were on the news channels that very morning. And being an (extremely) casual observer has its can see politics for all it's worth, smoke and mirrors and the lot.

But this pretty much reflects the way we have evolved as a society. From have designated roles and an efficient method of operation in teams viz. hunting, gathering, we have evolved through the ages into less clearly defined roles where we can subsist by pulling a hood over the other guy's head. The best, and richest people on this planet can now survive merely by pretending to be better than everybody else, and the key thing there is if two people believe that they are, their whole family, acquaintances and all would definitely be on board with it all. Because we are in such desperate need of leadership, we would be willing to accept anyone who said they were better than us merely because they said so. And because we really don't know better.

The thing is, to listen more. Because when you listen, the world seems to open up and you get to see people for who they truly are, rather than what they are trying to be. And even though you can't really change anything by listening, you can do a lot better. You can try and figure out the stuff that's worth changing, and the stuff that's best left alone. Because even though our society is now being subjected to the sort of dry rot we find in week old mushrooms, what is significant is the number of people who are willing to stand up and fight for themselves. And if you listen hard enough and wait long enough, you would hear the winds of change rustling through the land, almost  as silent as a tiger on the prowl, and just as deadly effective.

When the Chili Peppers sing there's a reason for the 21st century, they're damn right there is.