All your base are belong to us

Judge Mental

with 14 comments

I vividly recollect being sentenced to the gallows long, long ago for excessive usage of abusive language. (I also recollect furiously searching the dictionary under “O” for “obusive”, but that story I shall save for another time.) Yes, I had the makings of an epic badass way back in grade six. My favourite maths teacher (no doubt with the help of complex integrals and transforms) somehow decided that my constant references to the canine family were responsible for global disasters ranging from my 99 in the mathematics examination to stock market crashes to even Thalaiva’s only failure in the past two decades. It wouldn’t have taken me long to establish the merit of dogs and their ilk in a Big fight-isque scenario presided by the likes of Ms.Dutt, but as Murphy would have it, the news reached my folks and the rest as they say is history. Metaphorical aeons later, I found myself in the company of a few good men who were bent on proving that words other than the four-lettered one could be recycled and used as Verbs, Adjectives, Pronouns, etc. From Mothers and Sisters to Brothers-in-law to private body parts, nothing was spared in their ruthless endeavour to establish the might of desi expletives. The perpetrators always have the “It’s nothing personal, just good business” line in their defense but as Michael Corleone rightly pointed out to Hagan, “In this business, everything is personal”.

I’m not too sure I recall the time when the word “high” only meant flying on a jetplane. One of the few things I do recollect about aeroplanes is that the odd shape of the wings leads to the development of a pressure difference which in turn provides an aerodynamic lifting force. But I digress. I grew up in a society where a drunkard was always a bad man, where the cine villains always “high” and mighty (at least in the 90s, never mind the new age hero) and where an alcoholic was always a failure in life. It didn’t really help that my family went one extra step and labeled alcohol as “bad tonic” in Kannada; it was always referred to as “ketta aushadha” in family circles. Two years, some old and many new friends later, iconoclastic virtues have all been shed in favour of pragmatism. Hearing about the drunken revelry of an old chum hardly shatters any more glass, nor does being in the company of alcoholics anonymous. While the very thought of a period where I would have no control over my own actions is mortifying, the idea of cheap fun at the expense of an inebriated soul does seem tempting. The comparison between Churchill and Hitler is stuff of lore, and yet it raises pertinent questions about judging of character.

We at Morons Inc. have some inexplicable fascination for the world’s oldest profession. Before you get the wrong idea, this particular topic happens to be our stark favourite during debates and GDs, whose sole purpose as far as I can comprehend is to project the image of a group which is vela enough to discuss such issues of national importance. Two years and a million opinions later, I still don’t have an opinion. “Why do you care when the ones doing it don’t seem to themselves”, I had once argued just for the sake of giving the appearance of an intellectual. Inconsequential as it may seem to most, I have spent many a sleepless night pondering over the root concepts of good and bad. I have always had a bad habit of passing judgment on people. The guy who copies, the one who proudly pronounces himself to be another, and ironically one who is not as fluent as myself in the world’s most important language and yet might be infinitely more intelligent. As perverted as this may make me seem, what is the crime in flaunting one’s (god-given or sugery-given) assets to get things done in your favour? Any publicity is after all, good publicity.

An ardent devotee of elegance, I’ve always been smitten by dichotomy than taxonomy in general (though I’m sure some smartass would like to argue that dichotomy is merely a special case of taxonomy). Yin and Yang, Jedi and Sith, 0 and 1, nature has hinted to us in more than a million ways that there is no more to the world than a lazy scientist’s third law. Electronics has a taught me a simple way to classify signals; anything less than 0.5 V belongs to “Logical LOW” and greater, “Logical HIGH”. Till a while back, I used to apply the same to life. My NCERT-ish definition, “Anyone who does not indulge in activities that harm others or the society in general is a good person” once used to satisfy the thinker deep inside. I’m not too sure now. 16 Mutual Friends on facebook would probably agree with me. Any organizational setting has to exist in a framework of rules for its own sustenance. But at the same time, mere lack of conformity to social guidelines does not a bad person make. As corny as this may sound, and as much as I would not like to end a so-called profound post with this, when it is time to pass judgements, the judge would probably end up becoming mental.


Written by Chronoz

March 5, 2010 at 11:36 am

Posted in Yet Another Rant

Tagged with , ,

14 Responses

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  1. If I’d paid enough attention to the title, I’d have seen the horrid ending coming. My bad (*smacks knuckles into forehead*).

    Having similarly taken an ill-intentioned vacation in the Dark Side for much longer than class 6, my whole ideals weren’t exactly shattered straightaway. I still maintain a respectable distance from my year’s true bevda gang (of which FB-linked person was sadly a part), and made my best efforts to get my friends who had strayed through such a path- that started then itself with my neighbour. Sadly, the insti seems to have taught a killer lesson with morals, too- it’s all relative.

    (*Bitter pill taken. Swallow. Gulp*)


    March 5, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    • Errr….Don’t you hang around with the “high”er mortals all the time? Don’t think your advice seems to have had any impact.


      March 5, 2010 at 2:59 pm

  2. Shades of Kondy’s Ayn Rand inspired post here. I am in no way worthy enough to give a definitive answer about what is good and what is bad, but I can try to add some useful points.
    You speak of profanities that have crept into every North Indian’s hindi nowadays, me included sadly. I would again assert that it’s nothing personal, just a habit that is hard to shake off. Alcoholism is bad. Period. Not even Dela objects to that. And though I try to abide by most of the laws set either by nature or man, bending of the very same laws at certain instances is but inevitable. Proxies may be against the ethics of the entire teacher-student establishment, but the indulgence doesn’t rankle me half as much as say, lying to my mother’s face or throwing waste on the roads instead of dustbins.
    As for GV, I have already expressed my views to you. In the end, I would say that the greatest debate is one that remains unresolved forever and fought-over constantly. Like the current issue. That is why we Inglourious Basters like to float the same issues year after year, just to see if we can unearth any new aspect that might tilt the balance a wee bit towards Yin from Yang.


    March 5, 2010 at 1:40 pm

    • Brilliant point about the Yin to Yang thing. How can you say one thing is more “bad” than the other. (Yes, I know the correct term is worse).

      Should read Ayn Rand sometime.


      March 5, 2010 at 3:01 pm

  3. Unfortunately, I am reminded of this one scene from Sachein (one of the cliched vjay movies!) I think anything that doesnt hurt others one little bit, and still makes you feel good (and does you good, cuz otherwise not everyone around will be happy!) is something that can be justified. Drinking socially once in a while isnt a sin, becoming its slave, a regular drunkard is.
    After all, wine has biblical connections!


    March 5, 2010 at 3:46 pm

    • I don’t accept the Social drunkard tag. Either you drink or you don’t. 😛

      And as for the email, thank you 🙂


      March 6, 2010 at 10:22 am

  4. Being judgemental is something i vainly *try* to avoid ; as happened with me innumerable times, you feel a pang of guilt in your conscience being judgemental about someone every time :
    1) he proves your judgement wrong.
    2) he’s one of your friends or one of those whom you know well, ‘cos then you regret accusing him of some sinful act of his every time he’s nice to you.

    Talking about your judgement being wrong, i’d like to share a very famous anonymous quote, “We are all inclined to judge ourselves by our ideals; others by their acts.” This thing results mostly when the judgement made was based on an illogical, irrational and shallow set of observations.

    But judging someone is something that comes naturally, it is like drinking water or any other routine activity. Very hard to avoid.


    March 5, 2010 at 6:16 pm

    • Nice quote. Judging someone as you said is almost impossible to avoid but the question is which side do you put them in?


      March 6, 2010 at 10:25 am

  5. Profanities sometimes are nothing but an instrument to spice-up the otherwise dull and routine conversations. In fact it often serves as a vent for human frustrations before they get accumulated and fling out in the open as full fledged riots, which isn’t bad at all.

    So every thing needs to be studied in meticulous detail before fair judgement can be passed on it.


    March 5, 2010 at 7:34 pm

  6. thought provoking post….but of all lovely metaphors and implied allusions new or plagarised(/inspired) i hate the one on flaunting assets. I too have pondered over the relative notions of good and bad with my intensity of love/respect for good or hatred/fear for bad varying with time and cases of good losing out against evil.I believe that there comes a time when your logic fails to rationalize stuff and then you have to rely certain faith/values and beliefs without ever questioning them again trusting your maturity at this point of time.Thats y i guess my mum says that in the book of God, all your Paaps/mistakes you make till youth go into ur Mom’s account and once ur grown up u need to account for urself,as in life.
    PS: conversations on oldest profession,purest form of art,and yin to yang(the irony that it ws Lord who pointed it out?) are our staple food here(debates or otherwise), dont make us feel guilty that it could come under the “bad” category.same with the expletives.
    pps:i feel choosing ur beliefs of good and bad at the price of sticking to them for a guilt free life can hv massive implications though…….

    psr akhilesh

    March 6, 2010 at 5:04 am

  7. i second raghav abt the social drinking part. otherwise 99% of the world would be ‘bad’ in your eyes.
    @shreyas:’ketta aushadha’lol. that’s the first time ive heard it being called that way..


    March 6, 2010 at 9:35 am

  8. @Amit: How do you say one thing is more bad than the other? Profanities over, say drinking or something else.


    March 6, 2010 at 10:26 am

  9. nice post..btw i don’t have two opinions on this topic.. it makes an avg boy’s life more fun..and people don’t remember the profanities u use even a day it doesn’t hurt anyone..
    so acc. to the utilitarian approach to ethics which say an ethical action is the one that produces the greatest balance of good over harm, “bad” words are actually “good” words..
    p.s: did u watch baba?and u still think it flopped because of u?


    April 9, 2010 at 5:45 am

  10. Strange that I should re-read it now and find myself in a better position to say something here… Firstly, I must chastise you for calling any of Thalapathi’s works as a ‘Flop’… I’d stop with ‘stepping stone to greater glory’.

    Anyway, the point remains that the world isn’t a binary system and as a wise man put it, all isn’t in black and white but in myriad shades of grey. Maybe, it’s now our turn to conform to the adage – “Hate the deed, not the man.”


    April 17, 2010 at 2:08 am

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