Friday, November 19, 2010

It all started when I read the following line:

UNCONDITIONAL APOLOGY ??? What the heck does that even mean? Are we allowed to give apologies with any kind of fine-print? How does a "conditional apology" sound? Something like "I am sorry - but … I don't really mean it" ? If that's so, why should you even bother about saying sorry in the first place?

Hey, not long ago, saying a "Sorry" was an utterly simple concept. Let me illustrate:

Plain and Straight-forward. In fact, I think the concept of a "sorry" is an ingenious invention. Who ever thought of it is a mind-bending jedi-master of human psychology. "Saying Sorry" is the greatest social insurance policy for our unavoidable yet frequent inadequacies with it's miraculous ability to solve a lot of problems and fill the world with diabetic levels of love and peace among earthlings. But, sometime in the recent past of our great civilization, I realized the concept of sorry begun it's decline. Do you want to know when I suspected this was happening - When I started receiving a "sorry" each time I missed bumping into someone on the side-walk. A "sorry" is right on their lips. Thanks, but hello, may be I want to bump into you. A good, solid bump followed by an OUCH! of the genuine kind. At that moment, I KNEW that by uttering too much of unnecessary apologies, we are abusing this glorious gift from our ancestors who invented the concept after seeing a whole lot of tragic blood-shed.

For those who came in late, let me explain what happened back there with the unconditional apology story. Congress party workers created ruckus, protested, burnt effigies when a retired, out-of-work RSS ex-chief - K.S. Sudarshan made the following idle remark on Sonia Gandhi:

So, what ensued is a natural comedy: When someone credited Sonia to be a secret CIA, you know like a Jason Bourne or something, we have ugly, unhygienic protesters from the Congress Party soiling the streets of the country. Goddamn it, you idiots … It was a compliment. Go after that idle activist Arundhati Roy who thinks Kashmir never "soulfully" accepted India … Soulfully? Shove that soul up somewhere ... I don't care ….  


HEY HEY HEY !!! Can someone explain me what is going on here? What is this extraordinary enthusiasm and media melodrama about someone who said something and as if a "sorry" is going to smoothen things out.

An unimaginable amount of newspaper space and make-up mascaras on news anchors' faces is being wasted from our green planet to cover this "sorry"-full theater.

Politicians are demanding apologies, rejecting them, sometimes refusing to apologize or standing by their words, or taking back their words or even worse … clarifying them … justifying why they need not apologize. Sometimes, there are protesters wasting their worthless workday by standing outside some politician's house demanding an apology. Occasionally, there are physically manifest ways a political party acts which the public must construe as an apology - they either "snub" or "fire" a politician  - of course, at today's rates, you need to punch a giant hole amounting to at least tens of thousands of crores to be "snubbed" or "asked to step down". (On a separate topic, don't you think that ever since we got the new rupee symbol, all we hear is record-breaking levels of heists and scams. This is what happens when godless secularists choose an inauspicious day to release the symbol for our currency).  Don't get me wrong. Accepting an apology is fine, but why the hell is the political conversation being dominated MOSTLY by the quality and nature of apologies? Who cares about apologies? What about some policies, for a change? Is it just me or does anyone feel a little bizarre about the level of seriousness with which the elected officials are going to fulfill my dreams?

From a simple sorry-hug-kiss routine, the irresistible sex appeal of a "sorry" has been appropriated and abused by corporations, politicians, countries and other public figures. I never understood why any of the public figures or any kind of organization will need to apologize to the people. You see, saying sorry is a personal act. You are a public figure who either sucks at your job or possess a bad attitude. I would like you to get out of your office and pay back the money you stole from us rather than looking for some personal sympathy. Mindful of our impressive abilities to lie and fake, we have created an elaborate system of bogosity in form of laws, democracy, elections  and yet, the entire political discourse is about clamoring over the physical act of saying things audibly no matter what the intention is. If a corporation or a politician makes a news anchor scream, they should be paying the price for their incompetence and the nuisance- not waste my time by any type of inapplicable personal canvassing.

Let me remind you that this kind of behavior never happens in real-life between us people. If a friend pissed you off, you either beat the shit out of him or forgive him depending on where you lie on a scale of Joe Pesci to Gautama Buddha. There is never this circus of saying a conditional sorry or refusing an apology or staging a protest demanding an apology or  feeling bad that the sorry wasn't genuine or conspicuous snubbing in front of TV cameras to make a point.

If you are the kind of person who says "It's OK if he called me an 'uncompromising, incorrigible. worthless burping, inter-stellar hyper-sneezing mosquito of our cosmos '. But, hey, at least he said a sorry !!!" -  Right! you deserve that solemn apology. For the rest of us, I am telling you, folks. don't fall for this whole apology thing. It's sweet if a personal acquaintance apologizes for a personal inconvenience. If a public figure is apologizing to the effect of your emotional satisfaction, he's treating you like a bitch. Beware.


g2 said...

Damn it! I spent more than an hour on youtube because I clicked on the Joey Pesci link!

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