I’m not a big Shashi Tharoor fan. The only times I ever mention the guy is when I make the statement, “Dinesh Kapur is the next Shashi Tharoor”. (Now that I’ve put that in quotes, the statement will pop up in Google searches about Decay. Thank me later.) I’ve read occasional bits of his writing, which is good; but not nearly Ram Guha level. The excerpts from “The Elephant, The Tiger and The Cellphone” that were published in newspapers showcase a chap who, in that book at least, is trying to portray an accurate image of India to the west in a very elementary way. Basically, his writings are sort of a Dummies Guide to India.
The title, is how Stephen Colbert (the alter-ego, pronounced “Coal-bear”) called him during an interview on The Colbert Report (pronounced “Re-pour”). This is one of the few instances that anyone has held their ground in a face-to-face with Colbert. And it’s one of the even fewer instances of an Indian guy holding his ground in any interview. Interviews here tend to be lame exercises in sycophancy, thus when someone goes on The Daily Show or The Colbert Report; they have their faces pounded. But Shashi was kinda cool. He’s an MP now, Stephen took credit for that – deservedly. Anyone in rural Kerala who voted for him did so because of Stephen Colbert.
And in other news, my head hurts. I feel like an alien organism was gestating inside me and is now trying to emerge from my cranium.