The Menace Of Oil Spill

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Greenpeace activists hoist a flag after climbing on to a balcony at
 BP headquarters in London. Courtesy Guardian UK
Since the explosion and fire on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, Mother Nature has been responding to the audacious drill with a furious spill, while the giant BP is trying its best to calm her down.

Somebody please get Mother Nature into an anger management program. She should know that she is causing more damage to her own self.

Why is everyone after BP? Big corporations work for the benefit of small people. It’s just that their needs and greed are proportional to their greatness, which has certainly piqued Mother Nature this time.

She has already adulterated the Gulf of Mexico with millions of gallons of oil, polluting more than 100 miles of coastline. The fisheries have shut down and the sea creatures are dying. I was very sad to see pictures of birds caught in oil, dying for nothing. They could have made a delicious dish of tangri kabab for my friends.

I have been closely following this messy business because I too have suffered from the ill effects of oil spill many times—all because of my love of Indian pickles, which are usually preserved in copious amount of oil.

A Bird caught in Oil
I used to get my yearly supply of pickles from my mother. Those jars of pickles were the cause of all the major oil spills back then. While bringing them from my parents' home to my in-laws’ home, they would somehow defy my precautions and spill, spoiling all the stuff in my suitcases, including my best clothes and my worst clothes, in short, all the clothes that I owned. I had to suffer the trauma repeatedly, year after year. I felt like a victim—like a sea gull caught in the oil and doomed to die, and like those fishermen who have lost their way of life and livelihood—but was castigated as if I were a perpetrator like the oil giant, BP. It was more depressing because I had to suffer it alone, unlike the recent tragedy where people are able to share their sorrow through the media.

After suffering those agonizing, heart-wrenching oil spills for several years, I decided to make my own pickles.

Now I had always inwardly and outwardly desired to learn pickle-making, but had never been able to do so. When I was a little girl, my mother never allowed me to indulge in it, because according to her, studying was more important than making pickles. After I was married my new family said that making rotis and babies were more important than making pickles. So it remained an unfulfilled dream until…

…until frustrated by the recurrent oil spills, I fought for my rights and in complete defiance started making pickles on my own. I took all the jars in the house and started using them for pickles. Jars—they were aplenty—originally meant for dals and spices, but which remained empty, as I preferred to keep those products in their original packets. I pickled all types of vegetables I could find on the aisles of H Mart.

So now the kitchen counter and the dining area are lined with my plastic, and glass jars, radiating rich golden luster, dispersing delicious pungent aroma, which is more evident on entering the house.

I’m finally living my fantasy. Everyone in my house gets a good serving of pickles with each meal, with each snack, and even with tea. Whenever a friend invites us to dinner, I carry a jar of pickles instead of wine. As the number of jars keeps declining I buy new ones to replace them. Some go rancid and I have to throw them. Now this throwing business has been causing another round of oil spill. I have to continuously be on vigil to check which one is turning bad. After emptying the bad ones in the garbage, I have to clean the spill—here, there, and everywhere.

I’m feeling quite petty talking about my misery when Mother Nature is causing a calamity of such great magnitude. Honestly, it is in my thoughts all the time. I’m immensely worried about it, because I'm afraid it might ruin my vacation next week. I’m so excited about my new beachwear. I’m never going to reveal how cheap I got it on sale. I will only mention the original price, which is way beyond any of my friends’ budgets.

That reminds me…I haven’t been invited to dinner for a long time. I have so many jars of pickles ready to be given away. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to make some calls….

Related Links:
Bird Picture courtesy: - The Big Picture
Update June 2010: CNN Day 50: 11 dead, unknown gallons of oil, no end in sight
Update July 2012: The Atlantic: The Long Shadow of the BP Oil Spill Keeps Killing Baby Birds


  1. "I'm afraid it might ruin my vacation next week."
    - True Story

  2. Brilliant!!

    And somehow it brought back memories of oil-soaked notebooks in my school bag ..
    (Sorry Mom, but however tasty food might be, the spillage was the spoilsport :( )

  3. Never before had Oil sounded this deadly :)
    wonderful! witty post!

  4. Tea with pickles seems like a weird, new idea. :-D I have not had pickles for a long time and maybe I will try some now.

    I hope they are careful about how they transport oil, otherwise Greenpeace people can get nasty, especially those young activists who jump from bridges.

  5. @Anon: Wish you an oil-free vacation!
    @Puja: Yes, and the schoolbag eternally smelt of pickles!
    @Abhishek: lol
    @Deb: I regret writing this post! I'm now afraid Greenpeace activist might begin dharna outside my home!

  6. That picture of the oil soaked bird is really sad...

  7. Just read another post by Richa where she has compared America's reaction to Bhopal Gas Tragedy with this Oil Spill... such hypocrisy!

  8. Yes. It's our greed too.

    On a lighter note. One man's oil: The humble Parachute coconut oil that gives the best flavour to Avial, Meen and Kerala Beef Fry is what people across the country use before they bathe!

  9. The writers' pain is as evident as her attempt at being ironic. Watch this writer. Some day she is going to come up with a best seller.


  10. mmm me love garlic & ginger pickles :)

    U know i dont y its taking so long for them to clean up this mess...i still remember learning something in school about a certain type of 'oil eating bacteria' used to clean up oil spills.Wonder if they r using tht as an option..anyway i hope it ends soon before the hurricanes arrive n spread it even further :(

  11. @IHM: Both the incidents are sad and unfortunate, but we should not expect same reaction.
    @Gopal: ha ha Parachute! Never used it for cooking, but as hair oil years ago.
    @SK: You have sensitive Radar. May your prophecy come true! Thanks!
    @Rakesh: Now you have frightened me by mentioning the hurricane season. Going to hide into a closet.

  12. I wish I could say this is good - satire or commentary.But it isn't. The jokes if any fall flat and the usage of a tragedy to sidebar into your pickle woes is contrived and pathetic.

    You do seem to write well(language) but this post was a big disappointment and so was BlogAdda's pick of this.


  13. @Anonymous: Thanks for your honest feedback! I will try to come up with a better post next time….

  14. I have been victim of oil spills too many times. Recent one has been BP shares loosing its value like UK did with the rise of American empire. Some feel its British conspiracy to destroy America.

    By the way we have been running sort of fresh pickles.


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