Monday, November 15, 2004

Dinner with a cretin

Had a nice dinner with three friends on Saturday night, despite the presence of a Cretinous Fifth who spent the large part of the evening serving up anti-Pakistani statements garnished with backhanded compliments. Excerpts:

Cretin: I went to Pakistan for the Lahore match in March. Great fun, guys. So clean. The women are so beautiful. I came back feeling only 20 per cent anti-Paki.
Rest of Us: Er…vis-à-vis what?
Cre: Huh?
RoU: How much per cent were you anti-them when you went there?
Cre (proudly): Oh, 100 per cent. I hate them, maann!

Cre: You know, last day of my trip, I was so touched, I told this elderly Paki woman, I said to her, you know aunty, I’ve learnt that many Pakis are good people.
RoU: Not in exactly those words surely? It’s a pejorative term.
Cre: Pardon?

Cre: Nice trip. But one thing bad, you know, in the plane, we were travelling by PIA, and there was this very distinct Muslim smell. You guys know what I mean, right?
RoU: Hey, isn’t there something good on TV? Someone get the remote, quick!

The diversion wasn’t successful, for there was an India-Pak match on TV, and Pak were heading for a win, which elicited groans of anguish from the cretin. 35 to win off 32 balls with wickets in hand, and Inzamam strokes a beautiful cover drive for four. It was the sort of thing that cricket-lovers live for. In that split second, this clumsy, hulking bear of a man who all of us so love to make fun of, this slothful giant turned into an artist, giving us something that had the same effect as a glorious turn of phrase by one’s favourite author, or a few seconds of cinematic brilliance, or a musical crescendo.

What did the cretin say? "Fat bastard, now those fuckers are gonna win!"

And it wasn’t even a match of any consequence. It was nothing but an onanistic exercise by the BCCI (to celebrate its 75th anniversary or something) in front of an audience of millions. Then friends wonder why I’m so strident about some of India’s "cricket fans"…


  1. the cretin lives in chennai!

  2. This comes unintroduced, but I cannot not react to your posting. I study in New York and work in the city over the summers. A woman - chaste British accent, very academic looking - comes in and I, like the gauche fool that I am talk to her about one of the three taboo subjects on the menu - religion (the other two being sexuality and politics in this Bible thumping country, or for that matter anywhere in the world). I used the word "saffronization" (this was the time when we had the BJP in power and NCERT was excising and adding according to the will of certain extreme right wing elements) of textbooks. Man did she blow up - phew, it still makes me shudder when I remember that evening. She called me a "british bootwiper", a "colonial ball licking stooge" among other things in front of the genteel Manhattan evening crowd sipping Cosmopolitans, looking very puzzled. I learnt my lesson. Pick your battles in places where you can swear. I talked the weather to DEATH for the rest of the summer.
    I just had to... :)