Potential World Champions, on Steroids

Rupa Gulab

I must begin by congratulating all the fabulous Indians who shone at the Olympics. I have to throw in warm hugs for our two favourite women –Mary Kom and Saina Nehwal! Okay, so we didn’t do as wonderfully well as we had hoped we would, but on the brighter side, our sportspersons didn’t have to pay exorbitant excess baggage fees on their way back home. Also, we needn’t despair because India has so many people who are world-class at other more important things than sweaty sports. Take a look at just a few:

 The world’s most honest politician: Shivpal Yadav, the young and energetic Uttar Pradesh chief minister’s uncle, has got to be the most honest politician in the history of world politics. Recently, he gladdened the hearts of sundry officials and bureaucrats by warmly assuring them that it’s okay to steal — but just a little bit, mind you. I cheered madly because I thought his restraint was admirable. I was shocked, though, by the reaction of the mediawallahs who were present when Yadav made that heart-warming speech. They gasped in an outraged manner and behaved like my absolutely favourite TV hero, Arnab Goswami, on steroids. Hello, shouldn’t we be grateful that Shivpal Yadav is not a sleazy hypocrite like the rest of his breed? I predict that Mulayam Singh Yadav’s brother has a brilliant future ahead of him.

Team Anna’s hunt for an honest politician ends in UP, hooray! Perhaps Team Anna can also use Shivpal Yadav as the mascot of the new party they’re planning to set up?

The world’s most enlightened feminist: Kiran Bedi, former cop and current wailing banshee, made me sit up when she said that the Indian media focuses too much on “small rape”. Till she made this enlightening comment, I had absolutely no idea that rape came in different sizes like you get at clothing stores: extra small, small, medium, large, extra large, extra extra large, extra extra extra large, et cetera. I do hope international agencies for women’s rights interview her and kilos of valuable research come out of this. She must be felicitated for this insight — and I absolutely insist that she should be appointed to a global panel of feminists of the stature of Germaine Greer! Meanwhile, I’m busy making pretty garlands for her out of brand new, made-in-China army boots — hey, a woman like her deserves only the best!

The world’s most outraged person: TV anchor Arnab Goswami wins this contest effortlessly. He deserves not just one shiny gold medal, but three golds for the brilliant performance he delivers every week, every night. He frightens sly old Pakistani army chaps and evil retired ISI honchos more than the United States of America ever can. Seriously! I wish I was related to him, because this is the man to go to if your waiter doesn’t look suitably apologetic when you find a fly in your soup, if your tardy plumber doesn’t arrive at the appointed time to fix a leaky cistern, if the pizza delivery boy forgets to get sachets of oregano, et cetera. He can make anyone shiver in their shoes.

The world’s most forgiving people: In most civilised democratic nations, when political parties don’t deliver, voters make chutney out of them by showing them the door. In India, however, when politicians don’t deliver, they placate angry voters by giving them free household appliances to make chutneys. Honestly, mixers and grinders are what Indians really, really, really want. This practice is mainly prevalent in the state of Tamil Nadu, perhaps because they do make a lot of delicious chutneys to go with their dishes. Offhand, I can name coconut, coriander, garlic, tomato and ginger. You can’t really blame them, can you? 

The world’s most confused homophobe: How on Earth can we take yoga guru Baba Ramdev aka Baba Black Money seriously? I mean, on the one hand, he/she makes ugly speeches about homosexuality and while you’re gasping for breath and trying to recover from the vitriol overdose, he/she swiftly slips into pretty, feminine salwar kameezes. Huh? A very special medal must be made for someone as special as him/her: sky blue on one side and baby pink on the other. And wouldn’t it just be too fabulous for words if he/she won it at the 2016 Olympics, considering that it’s in Rio, the world’s favourite lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) destination?

This story is from the print issue of Hardnews: SEPTEMBER 2012