Sundar and Pratik work for a software company in downtown Pittsburgh and every day take 38C (bus) to commute from home to their office and back. I have had the fortune of travelling with them in the bus and get to listen to their discussions quite often. If you are anywhere in the bus when they are around, you will hear them, thanks to their decibel levels.
Sundar is a Tamilian guy while Pratik is a Bong. They must be room mates because they often talk about what has to be cooked at night and who has to clean the dishes, often argue about mustard and coconut oils, or Kareena and Nayanthara. But today was different! Pratik and Sundar were talking about the election results when the topic moved towards Michelle Obama.
Here is a gist of an overheard discussion:
Pratik: “I dont understand what Michele was thinking when she wore that dress, and that too on the night when Obama won. They were in front of a crowd of two and half lakh people!!”
Sundar: “Yeah, man. That black and red dress was quite nice.”
Pratik: “What?!!! You call that nice! It was absolutely pathetic! How can a First Lady wear something in black and red?”
Sundar: “Obama has said that India is such an important democracy with its cultural pluralism and an automatic strategic partner on crucial issues. He even voted for the N-deal agreement with India! In my opinion, Michelle was showing that she agrees with the values and views of Karunanidhi’s DMK party. I think Dayanidhi Maran is jobless nowadays but is like Chandrababu Naidu. Although, out of power, Naidu still has great friendship with Bill Clinton. Similary Dayanidhi has great friendship with Obama family and must have given DMK flag as present to them. Narcissus, Michelle’s tailor, used the flag to stitch her dress. He also used red for their elder daughter, Saasha and black for their younger one, Malliga”
Pratik: “She is Malia, not Malliga! And what crap! Where does DMK come into the picture? You Madraasis are crazy. Show me one Madraasi who is an important Indian American in the race to be part of Obama’s administration? There is nobody. Most of the names floating around are Gujrati and that too females, you know! Also, Narcissus was a Greek man, who loved himself!! Her stylist, not tailor, is Narciso Rodriguez.”
Sundar: “Wow! When do you read all this man? How do you know so much?”
Pratik: “If you reduce time spent on masala sites and chat, you will also be more informed” haa haa!!
Sundar: “So, if it is not DMK, who or what do you think, influenced Michelle Obama’s dress”
Pratik: “It could be Black and Red Publications. The Black & Red publishing project began in 1968. In their website, http://www.blackandred.org, they say that they exposed the constraints and ideological authority of Capital and also examined proposed solutions to social distress, judging many of them to be “rackets.” Political militancy was critically examined. They came to appreciate earlier rebellions against the State. Maybe this dress is her idea of showing the finger to George W Bush and his 8 year rule”
Sundar: “You are a true Bong! You can link this dress to anything you read on the Internet. Link it and say it is a tribute to Ganguly’s last test, as well!! What nonsense logic, Pratik! If you come to think of it, only reason she got publicity in the entire campaign was for all the wrong reasons, she has been labeled as the angry black woman! She is like the female black avatar of the young Zanjeer like Amitabh Bacchan. Her dress is to show the rise of the angry black woman. Red shows the anger or fire and black is her colour. That’s why it is a style statement”
Pratik: “I think Michelle is going to become a Republican. She is actually a believer in Communism and hence the red color. She wants few people (preferably just Barrack and another 10 people) to have any say in how the economy works. Already, economy is bad. Just like Tatas went from Bengal to Gujarat, companies will shift from America to Middle Eastern countries, if she has her ways! Mark my words; we may have to move out, too!”
Sundar: “I think she is going to be a style icon. She has already said that she has for the first time felt proud of America because people started believing in change. She even got her husband to change and sign a No-smoking agreement. She is a lawyer herself. See how she will express herself in the days to come!”
Pratik: “By the way, Stephen at office gave a different reason for her dress choice. He said that she usually prefers American designers such as Calvin Klein. With the campaign looking to get lots of votes from Hispanics, she started wearing clothes by designers of Hispanic origin such as Oscar de la Renta, Isabel Toledo and Narciso Rodriguez. Wearing Narciso’s dress is a way of saying a big “Thank you” to the Hispanic population.”
Sundar:”Hmmm … you talk big things. Liberterian communism and all! It is just coincidence that Red and Black is also a publication in Ireland or Black and Red is a radical publication. Now, maybe I am using radical in a wrong way but …. Man, did you see the match yesterday night? I saw Sehwag’s six and went to sleep. The ball’s path was like Sarah Palin’s election campaign. It went high in the air at the beginning, and with distance, popularity kept going down and finally hit the ground! Alaska Gov became Alas Gov and couldn’t win!”
The bus stops and we get down. Sundar and Pratik continue their discussion but I have to go in the opposite direction.
Michelle Obama had gone to Halloween Express in disguise when I was shopping for my daughter’s Halloween costume. She liked my daughter’s costume so much, she decided to wear something similar. It is my daughter’s ladybug costume that inspired Narciso to design Michelle’s historic attire.
I am Ranga and I approve this message!
Don’t believe me? See this for yourself!