Wednesday, February 21, 2007

That Undeserving Bitch

'She was a nobody. Hardly Sharukh or Amitabh, or even a Preity Zinta or Kajol.'

'Here she's almost forgotten.. except for a stint as a judge in the indian version of dancing with the stars.. she's just got two films.. no one remembers which was her last release..'

'in the sense that a lot of people r saying that she's got no real merit.. in the sense, it's just real good luck that she was abused by this goody character. otherwise, as far as india is concerned, she is a has been.. '

Such seems to be irritated thoughts of many Indians that watch in disbelief as Shilpa glides on red carpets to accept contracts, accolades and even the British PM's handshake.

Why such ungenerous sentiment from the land of milk and honey?

Shetty was one of the biggest celebrities to grace the Celeb Big Brother, which is usually populated by third rate British has-beens with flailing careers.

She did not initiate all the brouhaha that followed her entrance into the big house. Goody and co did.

Indians everywhere seem to be asking, 'Why is the whole of Britain over-reacting to the racism issue and why oh why are the British putting Shetty on a pedestal?'

Especially since she has provided only flops in recent years.

Why is an issue is being made in India out of Shetty's level of fame or status of her Bollywood career. The Indians are trying to judge and measure the situation by the actress's box office standing, because they wouldn't know how to judge it by the standard of Goody's racist behaviour. And they wouldn't know to appreciate Shetty's attitude in the Big Bro house the way a nation that prides itself on good behaviour would.

Who cares about the horrors of a coining of a rude nickname in a nation where young girls take safety pins to hold in defense in public buses, where the loudest voice is the only one heard, where the idea of a queue only co-exists with the idea to jump it, where the police are doing their duty only with lathis and dicks?

How many races co-exist in vast numbers in India? One. They would have no comprehension of how big an issue racism is in modern times, especially in Britain that is like a rainbow tribe, where the whole of the white population like to think of themselves as tolerant and well behaved (with their pretty-please and thankyous) and entirely absolved from their guilt-ridden colonial past.

The issue of 'racist bullying' was what the whole of Britain was reacting to with horror. Horror at one of their own people treating a guest in such an uncivilised manner. It put everyone here to shame; even the college porter stopped me to assure that he condemned the behaviour of Goody and co, even ashamed of them. The British were suddenly thrown back into the skin of coloniser/tyrant which they feel they have almost escaped, albeit slightly slyly, out from under the shadow of USA (ironically, the real Big Brother)

To Shetty's credit, she behaved beautifully through it all. She never for a moment forgot that she was representing her people, and was utterly dignified and fair (or at least appeared so) peppered with typical Indian overinvolvement with the cooking and pissing people off with too many onions and spices.

It was enormously gratifying to watch the brown native setting an example in civilised behaviour to the white master race (another irony is that JAde herself is mixed race). Take that, you erstwhile colonising pigs, the uncivilised savage part of me wanted to chortle.

So I do believe Shetty deserves her millions and tv and movie contracts and the PMs handshake for putting the whole of Britain to shame and making the British wish that She, and not Goody, belonged to them. Only by making her win, again and again, can they attempt to absolve themselves of this latest sin and everlasting history.

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