Nomological Net

Stray thoughts from here and there. The occasional concern for construct validity. No more logic. Fish.


faults in the clouds of delusion

Monday, April 24, 2006

All the world s***s in tune

This post cruelly bumped me up with a Tom Lehrer intro, and then led me back into dredging the murky mists of my mind -- all the way back to a time when I was young and the world was a worse place. Someone had written me one of those painful effervescent emails asking me to describe Spring in my part of the world. I had obliged. With this.

> spring is here spring is here
> that wonderful thing on the wing is here.
> across factories and slums and chawls we fly
> speeding through yon old mumbai
> there to the side of the railway tracks
> we see anon those naked backs
> all lined up in a row so straight
> as early morning they defecate.
> while in amongst the commuting crowd
> we hear our neighbours snore aloud
> the local trains all stink of sweat
> and our armpits are already wet..
> but what of wetness, what of smell
> this ain't no thing like the living hell
> of floods and torrents and drains with shits
> that mumbai becomes when the monsoon hits.

I'm not sure whether to be regretful or proud when I report that this is my only work to have been performed in public -- at the British Council in Bangalore. Totally without my prior knowledge or consent.


Blogger wildflower seed said...


4/24/2006 9:27 PM  
Blogger km said...

I am proud to have blogrolled you, TR.

(BTW, ever seen the expression on the face of a "Bombay newbie" when he or she learns why some vegetable vendors grow "coriander" and "methi" by the side of the railroad tracks near Jogeshwari? That explanation can make the hardest-core vegetarian take up meat with relish and - relief. And this must be the longest comment in paranthesis ever.)

4/24/2006 11:25 PM  
Blogger kundalini said...

tsk. "life ki dhun gungunao, city main kho jao, radio, radio CITY!!"

4/25/2006 9:57 AM  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

you have no reason to smirk. you never lived in bombay.

honored! (and yes, it's a scream)

what is? latest fm channel?

4/25/2006 10:50 AM  
Blogger kundalini said...

not latest, but yes fm channel. km, your comment brought this unrelated thought - i often wondered growing up why staunch veggies were always the people who called dessert "sweetmeat"!!!

4/25/2006 11:03 AM  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

good point. i've also often wondered what such people would do when facing a menu featuring sweetbreads :-D

reminds me of one of my atg childhood memories -- the first day of the new nirula's branch in my locality in delhi, localites packed in like hot choc fudge, me at the order pick-up counter getting shoved aside by indignant man brandishing take-out box featuring hamburger with one solid bite carved out (a sight for the ages) and demanding immediate redressal for the meat content within. a sardarji on his other side kindly acquainted him with the notion that cheeseburgers do in fact contain meat. the immortal response: "hain? chizbrrgrr mein noan-waj?!"

life is a learning experience.

4/25/2006 1:30 PM  
Blogger Psyche said...

:)) they for spring and you write of local trains!! And they even performed it. haahaahaaa.

I hope one day all my attempts at sarcasm get as much recognition :)

4/25/2006 5:51 PM  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

well, almost. the person who requested the elegy was different from the one who sprung it on the unsuspecting bangalorean cognoscenti. (interestingly, my mother, who does not live in b'lore, was in the crowd at that time -- much to her mortification, i suspect.)

but hey -- sarcasm must exist for its own sake! don't sell your sarcasm out (unless the price is good, of course).

and thanks for stopping by, no sarcasm intended ;-)

4/25/2006 10:06 PM  
Blogger GhostOfTomJoad said...

I was hoping the Boston marathon would inspire you to write about greater things...but this stinks, man!! :-)

4/26/2006 1:39 AM  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

that's hilarious!

but a little sad you didn't see the natural evolution of topics -- from running to trains, and now the latest post is on flying. got you! :-)

4/26/2006 9:21 AM  

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