Drumroll, Please! I am Profiled!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Woohoo! Friends, Manu Joseph, the acclaimed journalist and author, has devoted two big paragraphs to me in an article in OPEN magazine. It has made me so happy that I have been braying like an ecstatic  donkey for the past few days. And I am dying to share all that he has written with you.

My first reaction after reading the article was, “WTF? Why this felicitation?” It is his magnanimity that he has so condescendingly extolled my virtues in an article, which is otherwise an obituary to Anna Hazare’s movement—long live the movement—which I had nothing to do with. Even then, I simply couldn’t contain my joy. It felt as if I had been stuck in an unfriendly island among intimidating dwellers till now, feeling small and worthless, and suddenly someone raised my pedestal and showered rose petals on me.

Although, my low intellect could not comprehend everything that he has written, still, I felt highly honored. Right now, while I type these words, my eyes are filled with tears of gratitude.

When you start reading the article, at first, the statements look like little devils sitting smugly moving only the tips of their tails. Only when you delve deep into the underlying metaphorical, allegorical, and spiritual connotations and interpretations, do they reveal the writer’s profound love for not only a talented Indian like me, but for the entire humanity. After all, love is abstract, love is inevitable.

Manu Joseph starts by referring to me as a ‘he’, but after a few lines, he clues in that this he is a she. And I am sure that is me. Usually, I shy away from bragging about the accolades showered upon me for fear of losing friends out of jealousy. Also, I don’t quote so extensively on my blog, but Manu’s thoughtful paean has touched my heart and made me throw away all the rules with a speed of 7 miles per second. Now I don’t care if you turn green, black, or ashen after reading the following text.
There is a type of talented Indian who lives in the United States with his austere wife to whom he lost his virginity, and has two children who are good at spelling. He walks with a mild slouch. He is still intimidated by White waiters, but not Black waiters. In an elevator, chiefly in an elevator, he suspects he is probably small. He does not drive a Prius. He is acquainted with the word ‘generalise’ as something other people should not do. He is often a she. He is fundamentally a good person by almost all the definitions of that human condition—he is against genocide, burning people alive, including Muslims, and stabbing children, including Muslim children. And he loves Narendra Modi. ‘And’ not ‘but’, for ‘but’ will mean that he has considered all the facts and has made a moral decision. He loves Modi for honourable reasons. He loves the idea of a smart, tough and proud Hindu. He loves him because he loves Mother India. He was not always so traditional and patriotic. 
He will give many reasons why he is so now, he will give abstract reasons. He will say love is abstract, love is inevitable. It is not, in reality. Love is calculated, always. In America’s caste system, he is nowhere at the top. In fact, at times he feels he is at the bottom. There are moments, he knows, when brown is the new black. Back home he was something by virtue of his birth, his lineage and education, which was clear to all in plain sight. And the riffraff, which knew its place, readily granted him his, unlike in the United States. That is why he loves India. That is why the Third World middleclass and the rich who live in the West are deeply in love with their homelands. Nations that are filled with the poor are feudal in nature, and so excellent homes for the middleclass. India is probably the best. (From "The Obituary of a Movement" by Manu Joseph)
Such clarity of thoughts, such lucid prose! Isn’t he awesome? Reading the above lines has been like self-discovery for me and I am sure it will lead to self-actualization. I hope when he puts together the next article for the New York Times, there too, he inserts a couple of paragraphs in the same vein. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Right now, I am savoring this encomium as a donkey enjoys a horse cookie after eating hay day after day. Thank you, Manu Joseph! Jai Hind! Jai Bharat!

22 comments:

  1. What can I say except sending you my best wishes and my congratulations.
    I will have tobuy a copy of the Mag soon enough.
    I have always maintained that it is not the number of comments on one's post...it is the content that matters.You have proved me right.
    My best wishes once more and we hope to read more and more from you.
    Take care.

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  2. Replies
    1. Indu ji, it is just for fun! He has profiled NRIs and I have taken it personally!

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  3. *Drum roll*

    About time you got some recognition, Giri.

    On a serious note, pliss to note this comment on the link...

    'Brilliant! Mark Twainish.'

    DAAAAAAAAFUUUUUUUUUUQ!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lol...yes, I did browse the comments!
      Thanks :-)

      Delete
  4. Trust you to turn something negative into a drumroll for yourself :) you are nonpareil, Giribala. Hugs.

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  5. This is huge. I must become a NRI, soon.

    Also today I learned what WTF actually means. World taught me wrong.

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    Replies
    1. Eh...if you want to move to the US, you should first learn to walk with a mild slouch :-/

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  6. Well you turned the piece on its head. I know who the braying donkey is ;-)!

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  7. What makes you think it's not me!! Hrrmp.

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    Replies
    1. Really? Do you also walk with a mild slouch and suspect that you are probably small? Are you intimidated by White waiters, but not Black waiters? If yes, then it could be you because I am not intimidated by only White waiters, but by Black, Yellow, and Brown as well....

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  8. ooooo..... what a strong piece and how apt :)

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  9. wow...very a very well written apt piece by manu joseph and better yet your analyzation and post over it..made it a superb read..p.s. i like the donkey in the end:p

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  10. Giribala, even though I don't know you personally at all, this description is so uncannily you that I suspect he trailed you for months on end to do his story!

    This was classic!

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  11. I am tired of telling myself how funny you are!! Hilarious, Giribala, simply hilarious!! I wish you would write one post each for all that Manu Joseph writes.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Deepa :-)
      I do enjoy reading Manu Joseph's articles, but this time I was put off. A writer of his stature should not spread misinformation.

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