Pulling a fast one

G. Sampath
These days every Kuppusamy, Munusamy and Mayilsamy is going on fast. So I thought, why can’t I also do it? I hereby notify the global media that I will also be observing a one-day fast, soon. I will announce the exact date later, after I finalise the menu.
In the meantime, do send me suggestions. Just keep in mind that I won’t be having any chole bhature before, during or after the fast. Nor will I be taking selfies. It is better to spend a little money and hire a professional photographer to cover the event since it’s not every day that you do a public fast.
I will also ensure that I am not seen eating during, before or after the fast. That doesn’t mean I won’t be eating. Isn’t that the whole point of a fast, that it turns the mundane act of eating into a dangerous adventure? Fasting is a lot like an extra-marital affair. The details are the same as in marriage. But because the pleasures are forbidden, they are far more exciting. (Just to clarify: I am not saying this from any personal experience, it is a hypothesis formulated by observing other people only.)
Lots of experience
Fortunately, I have plenty of experience in fasting, having done it all my life. Every Tuesday, I fast between mealtimes: from breakfast to lunch, lunch to evening snacks, evening snacks to dinner, and then a solid 12-hour stretch from dinner to the next morning, when I break my fast with breakfast. But the big difference between this weekly fast and the one I am planning now is that my weekly fast wasn’t directed against anyone, least of all myself.
I must admit I was tempted when I read Arvind Kejriwal’s tweet on our PM’s fast, “Now that’s really cute…just one day fast…against himself”. Until then it had never occurred to me that I could fast against myself. What a fantastic idea!
I do have a lot of grievances against myself. For one, I don’t exercise enough. Second, I socialise too much with anti-nationals, who are spreading like germs these days. Third, it’s been three months since I misplaced my passport and I still can’t find it. All I have now is a USSR passport that I got made during a visit to a Soviet museum in Bulgaria. It looks exactly like any genuine international passport except that it has Lenin’s photo instead of mine.
A colleague tells me that if I grow a beard, do some rhinoplasty, and adjust my cheek bones to make me less good-looking, I could pass myself off as Lenin. And while on the subject of my good looks, please be advised that even the world’s most advanced facial recognition software would struggle to connect the face above this column with the handsome visage gifted to me by Lord Muruga.
Anyway, I’ve decided not to fast against myself. That idea is taken, and I need my own original cause to stand out from the clutter. So I am going to fast against you. Yes, you Tamils.
I was planning to avoid this topic but my conscience wouldn’t let me. As a Tamilian myself, I am furious. I’ve never been this angry since Javed Miandad scored a six off the last ball in Sharjah. It’s more than 30 years since it happened, but I’ve still not forgiven Miandad or Pakistan. But today it is not Miandad I am angry with – it is the people of Tamil Nadu. You are all intelligent enough to know that the PM spends a limited amount of time in the country. Still he came all the way from Delhi to see you in Chennai, and this is how you treat him? By blowing black balloons at him? Shame on you, I say! Failed by my own; When my father in Chennai called to say that people were planning to greet Modiji with black flags, I told him to go and stand at the airport with a white flag. But which father listens to his son in this Kalyug? He called back to say he couldn’t do it. Apparently, my mother had hidden all the white clothes before leaving for a 10-day Vipassana course. I told him to look properly in the almirah. As usual he became Sivaji Ganesan. “Dei, all I have is a white Rupa Frontline banian. Should I wrap it around the broom in the bathroom and wave it? Will that make you happy?” I put the phone down in disgust.
With this kind of family members, how can anyone participate in participatory democracy? For what it’s worth, I am still going ahead with my fast against all those who showed disrespect to the PM. They actually had to break down a wall because you wouldn’t let him use the road! Is this democracy? Yes, I am also unhappy with the Cauvery issue. But you are all acting as if Modiji has personally drunk all the Cauvery water. Hello? Take a break!

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