In a world that is gradually getting torn apart by religious extremism, humans are doing their best to keep me amused.
The other day I was travelling in an auto rickshaw with two elderly male co-passengers. In Kolkata autos are economical, shared, route driven rides, in case you were wondering.
Among themselves they were discussing the hopelessness of our country. Not me, my co-passengers thought our country was hopeless. I am extremely hopeful about our country. Especially my state.
Well, so I sat listening to this man complain about how one Mr. Minister was worried about the length of skirts when there were permanent problems like Kashmir, terrorism, rape, economy, literacy, debt and a few hundred more.
“How is the length of a women’s skirt a topic of discussion!” He was outraged.
I on the other hand, completely agree with Mr. Minister. Just because we have primitive, persistent and paralyzing issues lying around awaiting a solution, doesn’t mean that we will stop playing Barbie dress ups! After all, who knows what is best for a woman to wear? Of course a man.
At this point I should tell you that I am a woman, I live alone and I do not wear skirts. If you have seen Piku (The movie) then you will get what I am like. No, I am not like Deepika (some wishes are simply too extravagant), I am at that age where I am difficult to please.
In a typical day of my life, my maid comes at 5.30 am, sharp, not a minute to or past. At times I wish she shared her time keeping skills with my newspaper-dada who comes as and while he wishes. And when he feels that the day’s news is not important enough, he doesn’t come at all.
Every morning I clumsily open the lock, babble out what my maid has to cook and get back to sleep. When I finally wake up at 9.30 am (You are allowed to judge me), the first person I call is my mother. Here is an exact transcript of one of our daily conversations.
Me – Hello (groggy).
Ma – You are up! What did your maid cook?
Me – (I mumble the menu)
Ma – Don’t lie, how can she cook fish? There was no fish to cook.
Me – There was Ma.
Ma – Tell me how many fishes are there in your freezer.
Me – (I name all the raw fishes freezing in my freezer, which is a lot)
Ma – You don’t have anything to eat, I will send food.
Since I am a writer, now a published struggling author, my work comprises of writing my second book, connecting with my marketing partner, connecting with reviewers and bloggers and convincingly self-doubting.
But before doing all these activities I read the newspaper.
One day I was eating an apple (the only healthy thing I eat) and reading newspaper to look for the news that forced my newspaper-dada to drop by, when my friend called.
“What does Britain want?” he asked agitatedly.
“Uh…dugna lagaan?” I tentatively guessed.
What Britain wants has become a million pound question. Everybody has their own theory. Here is mine.
My grandma used to say that too much dairy is not good for the stomach and mind. I don’t know if she said that to make me eat less butter and cheese or was that a fact. I also do not know how popular dairy is in Britain. But my best friend who lives in London says that their dairy is the creamiest and she can’t stop having it. Hmmm, may be grandma was right after all.
After hearing my friend speak about Brexit, most of which I didn’t understand, he suggested watching Mohenjo Daro.
Just when I thought British people were losing it, Hrithik proved me wrong. We were losing it too.
Anyone, apart from Mr. Minister who is busy deciding skirt lengths, seems to make no sense to me.
Like, there is a Ms. Minister who has taken up the cause of uterus. She has decided to dedicate her life to the righteous use of uterus by confining surrogacy and thus, probably, eradicate the Parsi community as well.
Phew! That’s a hell of a task to accomplish in one life.
Everyone has the right to decide what motivates them, but uterus? Really? Not saving the girl child? Not education for the girl child? Not protection for women? Not health care for women? Etc. etc. etc. but a woman’s uterus!?
As a woman I should have the right to use my body (which includes every part of it) as and how I please without causing legal violations. However, I will give it to Ms. Minister for sheer creativity. Never in a lifetime could I have come up with the concept of “righteous use of uterus”.
My fellow Indian girlfriends, if you think that you are in a soup because you are in India and thus completely confused about which skirt to wear and how to keep your uterus locked, then think again. You are not half as worried as an American.
Here are two words hanging like a gun over Americans, ‘Donald’ ‘Trump’.
Among all this amusement there is a ray of hope for Muslim men. Muslim women might just have the right to say “Talaq, Talaq, Talaq,” or so I read. Finally, a broken nikah will not just be a man’s onus.
Here is my thought for this week. Not that I claim to be sane, but what’s going on around me is beyond insanity. And in its own twisted way, unabashedly amusing.
Koel is a quirky bibliophile who lives and works in Kolkata. She is a freelance writer and author with her first book ‘Aqson Level 1’ been recently published.