This post is in active response to the recently circulating video, or in the words of the video-makers, a public service message issued in the interest of all indian males [Link]. It is definitely no more than a publicity gimmick by 'Haywards 5000' to instigate the "true men" into buying their product and I wouldn't have ordinarily cared to object to its meaningless sermons. But somehow it has generated such a positive response from the online community, especially women, that I drew myself up from my slouch and put my fingers to the keyboard.
First of all, let us keep aside the fact that the message comes from an actor with such an indelible past criminal record and non-exemplary marital life; that a movie on 'Gandhigiri' and few instances of social service deem insufficient to balance the equation. An interesting point to ponder over though would be that the same Gandhian ideals of self-sufficiency and ahimsa which our dear Munna promotes in LRM, run tangential to the ideals put forth in the video.
Contesting each and every point would be too much of a task to my lazy Leonine ass, so I will just skim through a few notable ones. Kindly refrain from linking the points I butcher to my own personal way of life, as they may or may not resemble my pet peeves. So here I go...
1. Self-grooming: Yes, women do invest a huge chunk of their time getting their body hair ripped off the skin, patching the darker areas with makeup and trying to achieve that elusive body structure with limit tending to 36-24-36 (last I heard). But isn't it all done so as to present themselves as a superior female specimen to the male species and to usher in a feeling of self-confidence (though illusory)? And can she not expect a non-smelly and a less woolly male body in return? Talking about Indian males, haven't we all brought up on a culture that portrays every God with long hair and wearing fancy jewellery (read armlets, necklaces and earrings)?
2. Nurturing young ones: Zoologically, women were the naturally chosen primates to look after the offsprings while men hunt for the family. But civilization played its hand into turning those mothers into working women with ambitions and relegating those dynamic male hunters to static desk jobs. So is it so wrong of men to take care of babies considering the feminist idealogy of equal rights for women in every field?
3. Cooking & Dancing: Engaging in artistic pursuits, be it cooking, dancing or painting, has more to do with the hemispherical balance in the brain rather than a testament to the testosterone/estrogen levels in a human body. Announcing such activities as a female domain is as good as mocking the legendary men who enroll in such professions.
What is the true mark of a man then? I would like to believe that it is standing strong in face of dire circumstances protecting a weaker soul or a minority from the unjust onslaught of the self-righteous majority. May be it doesn't end at the ability of providing the sperm, but goes on to have the endurance to nurture the growth of that sperm into a fine human being. Or probably it has something to do with putting those gym-tuned biceps to better use in helping someone than bullying and exercising dominance over the less fortunate. And maybe... maybe the men & women eulogizing the video for what it's worth, need to recognize and boycott the misplaced ideals.
But what the heck, how would I know? I am just another man who gets orgasmic by cooking the food he loves to devour and grows his hair long enough to make his abnormally large ears disappear...
When US beckoned me by Siddharth Wagh is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.