Buses and misses

In tune with TN’s tested tradition I turn to tinsel town this week too. 12 B, as all true Tamilians groomed in pristine celluloid culture know, is a movie on alternate realities with twin plots.

If the hero gets into the aforesaid bus, a story unwinds. If he doesn’t another evolves. That much would suffice as inspiration for what follows. Only remember that there is more than one bandwagon in circulation and too many bedfellows bending over backwards for berths. Of course, their idea is to take the voter for a ride.

We will take our peek through the eyes of our hero, Captain, no matter if the vision is apt to be a bit blurred and political objects may appear farther, nearer or nowhere near where they really are. For e.g, the DMK bus that appeared close but was given a miss.
We confine to dialogues because in this rational land rhetoric is reality. Start, Action, Camera:

Story 1: Captain at bus stop.

Captain: (staring straight) I am King; I want my own bus.

Sudeesh: Is it not better for you to drive some one else’s bus so that if it crashes, as it is likely, you can jump?

P’latha: No Dravidian parties!

Cap: (squinting) But our name plate has ‘dravida’ too … ounnng!

P’latha: I meant J & K.

Cap: (straining eyes) But I am not fighting polls there. Maybe I can go to catch terrorists or finish of Paki army alone with bare hands for free. See, I can’t be bought. Sudeesh, check Samantha’s dates …

P’latha: I mean Aiyya or Amma

Cap: (looking keenly) Why are you so angry with DMK? Last time we went with AIADMK, if my memory is right, so why not DMK now? Anyway, that’s what TN people themselves do.

Sudeesh: That’s right. Otherwise how do we answer our party men who paid for tickets in the hope of a DMK deal?

Cap: (tilting head to focus hard) We give them free tickets for my next movie … check Kaju Agarwal’s dates. She seems sweet.

P’Latha: (Ignoring both) Now, what are you trying to do with your eyes?

Cap: (brows narrowed) Who are those people sitting still in front of me since morning? Tamilisai, Javdekar or some other ally?

P’Latha: (sighing, as she wipes the specks of dust off her hubby’s specs) None. Optical pollution.

Cap: Well, then we will buy and ply our own bus.

Reactions: J camp is all silence. K declared the fruit has fallen in a lonely pit to be buried and forgotten. Vaiko said Captain has failed to put people’s welfare in front. BJP said it is still waiting for Captain to turn nationalist. Anbumani claimed he is the only leader who can both walk and talk.

Story 2: Captain at bus stop after announcing alliance with DMK a little earlier.

Cap to Mrs Cap: I am waiting for the rational bus to pick me up at an auspicious time.

P’latha: I won’t get into the bus.

Cap: Fine. Follow me in your car. You are my eyes and ears. So, just give me a nudge when the bus comes. Not too hard, I don’t want to fall and get run over.

DMK bus arrives, K exults from window and spreads his yellow towel out as if to catch a falling fruit. Cap ambles to front entry.

Stalin: (blocking way) This is for Vice CM. Climb in from back.

Cap gropes along to rear.

P’latha: (voicing sinister spousal concern) Don’t go deep in. At least, travel footboard so that you can skip out any time. I will collect you on my follow through as I am used to.

Too late. Cap has vanished into a sea of rationalists who were praying precisely for this moment.

K: (hugging his latest co-born) Thambi Captain has taken the right decision. My wishes to P’latha and I happily recall the occasion when I as CM conducted their wedding in Madurai. With Captain by my side, TN will henceforth see the flow of honey, milk and fruit juice too.

Captain: That’s a great cocktail. Cheers to people. Together we will wipe out TASMAC from TN.

Stalin: (smirking in silent sarcasm) Can’t the two tell sunset from Son rise?

Reactions: An opportunistic deal, said AIADMK. Vaiko bemoaned that the fruit will soon become pulp. BJP is shocked that Captain, who took on separatists and sleaze on reel, could get so anti-national in real. Anbumani reiterated that he can not only walk and talk, but also run and ramble.

Story 3: True climax. Captain at bus stop. PWF bus sputters in and breaks down to a halt a few feet short. Vaiko & Co jump out and run frantically towards Cap, waving a piece of paper and drag him in. Political Pandavas confer in the stalled bus and try to ‘kick’ start with the new steady leader. Cap declared future King of a future coalition’s future regime. Third front dawns with a hangover.

Reactions: J camp suppress a smile. Stalin relieved. K is allergic to fruits now. Sarath Kumar ditches BJP and hitches on to AIADMK. Ditto with small allies as they seek out better deals. With Anbumani, who claims to be first front, the contest is now four-cornered. BJP is cornered.

Expect more twists and turns. Sequels to follow. In TN theatre, the show never ends.

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Jawahar T R