11.2.09

Tata Steel - We Also Make Turtle Soup.

We also make steel.
Snappy line, that. Catchy. Memorable. And for those of us old enough to remember the first TATA Steel commercial it was used in, backed by stunning visuals and the subliminal promise of progress. All in all, a line that's carefully constructed to leave you with that warm, fuzzy feeling.

Unless, of course, you're an Olive Ridley sea turtle.

In which case, you're probably down on your flippers, hoping and praying that TATA Steel stay the hell out of (admittedly profitable) associated ventures like building a port in Dhamra, Orissa.

Why?

Because that just happens to be your favourite nesting site. For generations, you've headed there to raise your young. It's quiet. It's peaceful. The sand in the maternity ward, is scrubbed on a daily basis. And it's covered by your HMO.

The perfect place, in other words. Until now.

Now, TATA Steel also find it perfect. Perfect, for a port.

Ok. TATA. Bye Bye.
This is the ecological equivalent of living in low income housing projects that have been slated for "urban renewal".

If you're an Olive Ridley sea turtle, suddenly you have to say bye bye to all the familiar old landmarks. The little pool where you learned to swim, the playground for the kids, that romantic little beach where you first wooed the Mrs. - all gone. And in their place is this massive concrete edifice to progess .

And it's not like it happens overnight. No. The construction takes years. Your favourite sand piles are raided. The waters are choked with cement dust. Petrol and diesel fumes are all that's left to breathe. And all the other chemicals sitck to your shell with a sickening toxic shine.

So if you're an Olive Ridley sea turtle, you're seriously considering going ninja on these TATA Steel guys.

If you're not an Olive Ridley sea turtle, but just your average, ordinary, everyday biped, and don't like the sound of what's happening, click here.

4.2.09

Beer Is Thicker Than Blood.

A new study shows that our favourite brew is apparently thicker than the sticky red stuff that flows through our veins.

Sociologists can find no other explanation for the recent outburst of 'activism' surrounding the Sri Rama Sene annual pub bash last week.

One befuddled, bespectacled bean-head went so far as to label this a phenomenon, which, as we all know, is merely the official scientific label applied to anything that the men in white lab coats can't wrap their heads around.

A spokesperson for the Amalgamated Sociologist's Symposium had this to say "These are stirring (not shaken) times, for all of us here at A.S.S. For years now, we have been tracking instances of violent Hindu fundamentalism orchestrated by the minions of the VHP. But apart from a few khadi wearing, jhola toting, unshaven, leftist liberals, nobody gave a shit."

When asked how exactly this inverse correlation between the viscosity of lager and lahu was determined, he said "Just a few short years ago, we thought the blood on the streets of Gujarat would be the tipping point. We anticipated a huge groundswell of righteous anger and furious protest against the saffron brigade. Instead, our leading corporate criminals congratulated their brother from a political mother on being a great administrator."

"But just a few suds have fallen on the parched earth of Mangalore, and look at the reaction. Tipplers of every description have raised their glasses in unison. The hard working, hard drinking, urban crowd have staggered to their feet in inebriated indignation. Except for the poor women who were actually attacked, of course. They seem to have disappeared from the face of the party scene."

"What else can it all mean, except that beer is thicker than blood?"

When asked for a comment on the spreading wave of dipsomaniacal desi dissentfollowing this dastardly deed, the chairperson of the NCW said nothing of any consequence.

In the meantime, beer guzzlers and pub hoppers across the nation have taken to their bar stools in protest. A rally organised on Sunday had to be cancelled, as the principles had all made it a point to attend the pre-rally bash the night before, and were still recovering.

The question of why people have waited until this fundamentalist insanity has reached their doorsteps (or at least their local watering holes) before raising their voices in protest, remains to be answered to anyone's satisfaction.