Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Thursday, October 09, 2008
He was probably close to 80. Yellowed teeth (a few missing, probably 'coz they were too yellow), hollowed cheeks and grey hair so light, it was like a dense fog that settled over his scalp.
He stopped me outside my gate. I presumed he wanted a lift somewhere.
"Can you do me a favour?"
His voice definitely didn't hide his smoking preference. It was a hoarse whisper at the loudest.
"Where are you heading towards?" he asked.
"Oh, I am sorry, but I am just going to the junction. Not anywhere far."
I rarely like the prospect of giving lift to strangers. Humanitarian considerations have taken a quiet back seat, thanks to Bangalore newspapers.
"I want a small help from you. Can you buy me a pack of cigarettes?"
Now this was more than just a regular dilemma. This has become a moral issue. One of conscience. The man was obviously hiding his desire for nicotine from his family. Else I'm sure he'll have an able-bodied son or grandson to get this task done.
I decided to play the white samaritan.
"I am really sorry. You shouldn't probably be smoking at this age. Plus your family might not really like it. I'm sorry."
There. I have said it. Being someone who smokes a strict four cigarettes everyday (never less, often more), it was a dire decision for me to make. Does it imply that I don't care about my health as I do about others'?
I brushed the dilemma off my white samaritan uniform. After all, he was pretty old. I wouldn't be smoking at that age. So it's best he too doesn't.
I couldn't get that old man out of my head. I kept thinking. He was asking out of possible desperation. A desperation for something that might seriously affect his health. Now if a packet of cigarette can have such an effect on me, what about euthenesia? Both are questions of personal choice. But to hand it to them, you need someone else.
Can I pull the plug on someone suffering from a possibly terminal disease?
I remain a huge advocate of euthenesia. I am ready to keep money aside for a flight to any country were euthenesia is legal, and get my plug pulled. But who will pull it? If my life doesn't go into progressively deeper ditches, I am sure none of my close family will.
And if ever someone asked me to stop his aching heart from its miserable journey, I don't think I can. There will be a dear someone, somewhere in the world who wants to see the ailing man live how much ever he can naturally. Who am I to decline their needs? Who am I to decline the dying man's needs?
See why this is a question of moral dilemma more than just of personal choice? There is no answer here. My hands are empty. Probably yours too.
As I came back after my short ride. The old man was still there. I don't think there passed anyone else who granted his wish. Will the cigarette pack make his today brighter and tomorrow pitch dark? Is that what he wants? Or a bleaky today and a bleakier tomorrow?
I didn't look at his face. I couldn't stand the question anymore. I was too scared.
Tuesday, October 07, 2008
(Courtesy Nikhil Chinapa's note in facebook)
"Rave parties are a heady mix of drugs, Alcohol and sex", say Headlines Today.Music anyone? Did we forget the music? Rave parties are a heady mix of free spirited individuals, gathering together to celebrate life under the influence of some of the best music in the world. Screw drugs, screw alcohol, screw you, Headlines Today - you clueless bunch of useless journalists who wouldn't know a "Rave" if it stood up, poked your eye and bit you in the leg.I'm not for a second condoning drug use or even attempting to stand behind the often used argument of, "Oh, but drugs are everywhere". Yes they are, but for the millionth time, the people who do the drugs continue to do them with or without the music!! Will you moron's stop maligning the music I love and reinforcing public paranoia against electronica and electronic music artists?The media are all the same - in a rush to report anything and sensationalize the latest "hot" story. I still don't know what EXACTLY happened with the so-called terrorist encounter in Delhi where Inspector Sharma lost his life. Which channel is continuing it's coverage that story? Screw channels, which newspaper is still covering it, or EVER covered it? As far as I know, all they did was mouth the official story.Same story... different city. "Police bust drug fuelled rave". "241 revelers arrested" "Large quantities of drugs confiscated." Really? did the cameras catch the "large quantities" or are you just taking the word of our lads in Khaki? Are we going to get statements from the peddlers, from our arrested revelers... or will we only continue to loop the same footage of carefully worded statements from the authorities?Come on Headlines Today, NDTV, Times Now... either shit or get off the pot.Real jounalism. I crave for it in my country.
I wonder if someone will deport me off this country. What should I do for this? Any suggestions? Rave perhaps?