Sunday, August 03, 2008

Korbo, Lorbo, Jitbo Re (But when?)

So the Tapur-Tupur Twins are out of KKK. (Tapur Tupur, for the edification of my non-Bong friends, is Pitter Patter in Bong, as in "pitter-patter of rain".) And they are out because both failed to do this stunt where they had to cross over from one highrise building to another suspended from a rope. While Tapur (or was it Tupur?) at least got into harness and stepped on ramp, the other one gave up without doing even that. Both claimed they have a family history of vertigo. This was a crucial stage of the competition as it was giving all those contestants who had lost out earlier a chance for a comeback. BTW, Tupur (or was it Tupur?) had earlier been chucked out because she had failed to make the cut in a stunt that involved getting into a heavily-padded suit and helmet and running from a pack of ferocious Belgian Shepherds. She had complained of claustrophobia then.

Duo Daar Gaya, Aur Ghaar Gaya
In the final analysis, what the Chatterjee sisters have successfully and emphatically proven is that Bongs, including the women, are a bunch of wimps. If that wasn't worse, they have also demonstrated how Bongs instead of just making a quiet exit (like Vidya Malwade) will try and prove a point. (By claiming to be victims of a range of phobias in this case! As if that exonerates them from not attempting stunts in a reality show that professes to bring their participants face-to-face with the very fears that they have been running away from all their lives.)

Is dono ne Bangali auraton ka naam pura hi mitti me mila diye!
I have no compunction in claiming that yes, I belong to the generation of post-Independence, post-Naxal period generation of Bong men, who would not hesitate to show a clean pair of heels if the situation so demanded. And I'm not saying this because it's fashionable now to do so after Imraan Khan's character in Jaane Tu... showed why it's best to first shoot questions... and keep on shooting them till your opponent's brain turns to jelly.
On the contrary, Bong women were the ones who were expected to juggle the shuriken and trident, beat the shit out of the Mahisasurs and basically compensate for err... for the lack of err... for want of a better word... balls... in the males of the species.

In fact, just check this out from one of my favorite columnists:
"The British... raised only one regiment from the east, the 49th Bengal, and disbanded it the moment hostilities were over. The official line on Bengalis, according to Byron Farwell's Armies of the Raj, From the Great Indian Mutiny to Independence: 1858-1947, was that 'Bengal is a low-lying country inhabited by low, lying people.' The Bengali was fit thereafter only for clerical work. Hobson-Jobson defined the Baboo as 'a superficially cultivated, but too effeminate Bengali.'
Bengali men were kept out of the catalogue of 'martial races' from where the post-Mutiny army was recruited because the Sahibs had no answers ( the difficult questions asked by Bengali Brahmins). Such thoughts jostled sporadically through an idle mind as one walked by the roundabout intersecting the two busiest streets of London, Oxford and Regent. There was a reason.
Huge double-deckers glowered at the massed crowd of pedestrians who dared to interfere with the command of the jungle; the buses seemed to get more hostile as the lights changed while we were still midway on the zebra crossing. Next to me a Bengali father, hunched over a pram, his back sloping 45 degrees forward, his face tense with anxiety, muttered to his wife to hurry. She was young and pretty and walked many inches taller than her slouched husband. The new-mother heaviness around the hips brought an extra insouciance to her measured gait. She gave her husband one withering sideways glance as the double-decker purred angrily at mother, father and baby-in-pram. She lifted her face higher and asked her husband: "Kee korbe? Booker upor chaliye debe na kee?' (What'll the double-decker do? Drive over my breast, is it?) The husband was not waiting for an answer; with pram he scurried across while the regal step of the Bengali woman never faltered as she took her time.
Bengali women are the true martial race of Bengal. Thank God the British never found that out. They would have raised the 49th Bengal Tigresses and never been defeated by Gandhi." -- M.J. Akbar, Byline, Oct. 11, 1998.

So, this is my humble appeal to all Bong women out there taking part or looking to take part in reality shows: Mamoni-ra, it's not enough to go and win every song-based reality show that's on at the moment, you need to show the world that you are made of sterner stuff, that you are the true khatron ke khiladi, and not papa ke dulhari.

P.S. And this is a an appeal to you too Mamata-di. What are you doing abstaining from voting? Take a stand. Look how Mayawati-behenji is preparing for prime ministership. You too should think of doing something as daring, if nothing at least sign up for KKK.

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