Monday, December 01, 2008

indifference

When I walked into my office on monday, it was after thanksgiving. My body was sore from playing too much wii and waiting far long in airport lounges. I was glad I had urged myself to come to work, although I was feeling no guilt for plotting to leave as early as possible.

How are you asked my office mate.

It was after a long weekend. I assumed that this "how are you" was not just mere gesture. It was an actual question asking for an honest answer. I smiled and said "not bad". It was a long "not bad". It obviously meant " ya, I don't want to bore with you with the details, but in all honesty, I am not in the peachiest of moods". Taking the hint, he said "ah. that means not good".

I smiled and launched into a big explanation about how the weekend was actually fun but in retrospect maybe I should've tempered it a tad, if only to save myself agonizing fatigue.

And that was when the story changed tracks...

He looked at me a few seconds.

Then he said " I assume no one you know was injured in mumbai then".

Oh!
Mumbai!

Yes.

How manyth time was something happening in that place ?
I've lost count.

Indifference.

It refers to the feeling that consists of "no feeling".
Apathy.

Some people cannot care less.
Some people do not understand how caring will help.
Some people cannot bring themselves to care.

And then there are those like me..
who take it as a fact of life.
coz as every day dawns, terrorism is getting to be an urban reality.


Ah!
Mumbai!
I guess no one I know got injured, I said.

He was shocked. Apalled.

"You guess ?". Shouldn't you be certain ?

" My family is too large. If I search and ask long enough, I most certainly will be related to someone that got injured". I said.

Ah!

Indians.
Indians with large families.
Indians of the second largest country in the world.
Indians with so many people to call family, that losing one doesn't matter ?
Really? REALLY ?

*%^*^&&@&

Indifference.
People like me don't believe in luck.
We believe in grand words and themes called stochasticity.
Noise.
Probability.
Randomness.

There is a 50% chance that a madman's gonna do something to mumbai.
Everday.
Again and again.
Everyday.
Yet again.
Never ending.
A random chance.

When things start to happen randomly, you stop expecting anything.
You toss a coin.
It may turn out as heads. There may be a bomb here.
It may turn out as tails. It's not here, but there.
But it bloody hell is somewhere.
Waiting to explode.
You accept whatever you're dealt with.

Worse, you can't seem to care how it turns out.
It stops exciting you.
It stops moving you.
It stops affecting you.
You simply become indifferent.

An indifference born from shock.
Because you can't seem to do anything.
Because you feel helpless.
They keep coming and coming and coming at you.
Everyday you thank your stars that no one you knew died.

Someday there'll come a day when someone I know will get injured.
It's random you see.
Nothing's gonna change by then.
Anti terrorist policies may come ?
Nonsense!
There is no such thing.
We pass blame. We allot blame. We then pass it again.
Who gets blamed is random too.
Who gets to take responsibility is random too.
There is no one who can stand up and say " I failed, and that's why this happened"

Aisa hota hai.
Swalpa adjust maadi.
Thiruvilayaadal.
Life goes on.

And then someone says "I planned it. I wanted this to happen"
And still we don't believe them.
S/he's not being honest.
Someone's asked them to say that, we think.

The TV blares.
xyz from abc claims responsibility.
I see.
So what ?
Do they get punished ?
No.
Its just more paperwork for intelligence agencies.
Oh there were reports that his was going to happen ?
And still you didn't do anything ?
Why ?
Coz there was a 50% chance those reports were mere rumours.
Oh good job!
You know your probability, you freaking my cup is half full!!!
Half full is enough huh ?
Go hungry on a half full stomach why don't you ?
Take a half salary paycheque who don't you ?
Walk with one leg and one arm and a single ba!! why don't you ?
Isn't your cup wonderfully half full ?

A day will come when someone I know will go.
And the apathy will hit.
Coz it happens.
It happens only in india.
Collateral damage.
We have plenty to spare.
Enough buffer.
We didn't breed like rabbits for nothing did we ?
We have plenty to spare.

We have a volley of bodies.
An "akshaya pathram" of bodies.

This is how a peace-loving nation turns mad.
When there's nothing else to do, and no one to blame, and too many people you care about get hurt, a peaceful nation gets mad and violent.
And there's nothing that can stop a nation with right on its side.
Right ?
Right ?

I don't know.
In fact I don't know if I'll live to see the tale and tell the tale.

Meanwhile.
This is me.
Apathy.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

population control.

:-)

cheti said...

yeah it comes to that more or less !

Janani (used to be Anaztazia) said...

those "acts of god" ... earthquakes, droughts, landslides... we should let them take care of population control.