Takes you back on the memory train, to those college days when the word ‘Funda’ spoken in different tones could mean anything from – ‘how was your day’, to ‘what’s your problem’, to emphasis on your individual philosophy. Like the Nuers’ who have 200 different words for cow, our vocabulary and thought processes, be it slang or otherwise have word interpretations based on nuances. Some common ones include yes and no based on the shaking of the head. A horizontal motion of the head in most regions means ‘no’ except Maharashtrians where the movement denotes a ‘yes’. By the same token, when a mother slaps a kid’s bum – the facial emotion communicates whether it was anger or love.
Read on, connect the dots, and understand my convoluted theory which simultaneously is trying to answer the multiple WhatsApp messages from friends around the world about the January 6, 2021 (a day marked in infamy) shenanigans in the Capital complex of Washington DC. With one speech that morning our esteemed COC succeeded in including USA amongst his personally labeled ‘shithole’ countries. To put the events of the day in perspective – The incoming President (to be referred to as Delaware Joe) had won the election by a substantial margin. But the bully pulpit refused to acknowledge the same and as a last resort jumped the Capital Building while Congress was in session. They proceeded to govern themselves like hoodlums and some even reverted to their primate ancestry and swung from chandeliers with war cries. Others marched around with flags wearing hats sold at fire sales and flea markets. Their demand was for the Constitution to be negated and their wishes for another four years of anarchy fulfilled.
Congresswomen, Senators, and administrative politicos along with lobbyists slithered under furniture, hid in cabinets and some even tried to camouflage themselves with the floor rugs, while the media circus gave a minute-by-minute coverage of their discomfort and agony. What was incomprehensible to Americans glued to their TV was – where were the Security Guards? Where was the Swat Team? Where were the Commandos? Where were the DC police? And, mostly, where was the COC?? My ‘funda’ was if this can happen at the most closely guarded real estate, what hope do I have of protecting my home? I quickly went into the front yard and pulled away the picketed signs “Black Lives Matter’, ‘Worship Diversity’, ‘Democracy Forever’! After all, this was Texas, home to all things redneck (a term for xenophobic loyalists of the current administration).
In the history of United States, never had Lady Liberty seen such a sacrilege of the rule of law. This was followed by another historical moment which came later that evening when Republicans and Democrats denounced the attack and certified Delaware Joe to be the 46th President of (now laughingly referred to as) the greatest country on earth. January 20th, 2021 will herald a Democratic President with a majority in both the Congress and Senate and the world awaits while my ‘funda’ asks ‘aata baghu ha kai kandey kadhto?’
My dear esteemed readers let it never be said that I do not tie loose ends. This column started by defining verbal nuances in different cultures. What happened in America this week is left to your interpretation – do you have a horizontal or a vertical slant? Or, akin to a mom’s phalange contact with the rump, do you think the American COC used his verbal mechanism to stoke the fire as a last resort to retain his pulpit?