May 5, 2011

Rant UnLtd

There is a reason people like Sathya Sai Baba and Anna Hazare manage to enthrall us. We Indians are completely bereft of imagination which is essential for a basic modicum of sensitivity. We do not understand that breaking queues at a toll booth will only impede the flow of traffic, not hasten it; we don't understand that driving garbage trucks around with their hoods open will strew the streets with rotting stench and dropping garbage; we definitely don't see how smashing a few fingertips while swinging through doors is in any way wrong. Toh kya hua ji?.

The building which houses our office is being painted. Today as i was leaving work i noticed that the paint dripping from the workmen's brush had coated the entire flower bed which lay around the right side of the building a stark white. These are beautful peonies, daisies and marogolds. The flowers could be recognised only by their shape since all of them seemed a uniform white. In all likelihood the plants will die soon. In Fremont i recalled, the painters would first take care to cover with a light tarp any plants that were likely to be smudged with falling paint when the external walls of any structure were being painted. It wasn't a matter of a great investment, just some simple steps. I spoke to our security staff and when he called the workmen's supervisor, his whole attitude was that i was the one who was out of my mind. The whole while that we kept arguing, he refused to accept that it was absolutely simple to cover the flower beds while the men were at work and remove the cover in the evening!

This is why we will never win any Nobels, never get anywhere while China will build nuclear power stations and SEZs and the US will keep inventing cheaper and better antiretroviral drugs. You need imagination, you need sensitivity to do those things and we lack both.


Shoumitro said...

Absolutely agree with you. We dream to become a great nation only on the strength of our economy, but our assets as human beings are abysmal. We are not even mediocre. Lying and backstabbing are our second nature; safety and quality are two aspects only to pay lip service to. I am sure the workmen who painted your office worked under very dangerous conditions. Really, we have a very long way to go.

stonetemplepilot said...

better still would have been to take up the matter with the dumb twit who hired the painting group!. whoever is in charge of such matters at your workplace.

the aam admi is mostly bothered about his bread, it's the acmospeheric men/women who need to get their act right:)

Shoumitro said...

Btw, I could not understand your alluding to Sathya Sai Baba and Anna Hazare.

drift wood said...


I was referring to our lack of imagination which makes us headless chickens who hail as godman anyone who can conjure up some sacred vermilion or a few pens! (which any decent magician can also do); we start applauding public figures like Hazare simply on the basis of his 'clean Gandhian image' without any real inkling what the Lokpat Bill will be tantamount to. Mind you, I'm not criticising Hazare or SSB here. What gets my goat is the blind adoration that is showered on both without any real attempt to scrutinise their actions/opinions.

My only grouse with what you wrote is that you're also holding someone else responsible for something that is basic commonsense! This is the way all Indians function. Even in offices, team members rarely take onus for their tasks & I think this is just a reflection of a larger malaise.