“What is a blogger?”
“Aachchha baba, ei blogger byapar-ta ki?” (‘Son, what is this thing called blogger?”), he asked as he got up on his bed and sat down again. The good news is he seems to be gaining physical and mental strength enough to will himself to get up and sit down on his bed. Per my family, this is the best they have seen him in the last ten days. The difficult thing though is that now I had to figure out a plausible way to explain what is a blogger. As you may or may not realize, there are three main challenges in explaining the concept of a blogger to my dad.
The first challenge, clearly, is explaining the concept of a blogger to my dad 🙂 To this day, he is still worried about how does this thing called Google (or as he calls it “Googly”) get to know everything. Forget that – he still has not figured out how my brother in Kolkata gets to know his (dad’s) medical test results done in Kalyani earlier than he himself does. He thinks email means the hospital guy rattles off all the results on the phone to my brother who diligently writes them down on paper and pen. I could barely get past a simple explanation that a blog is like a daily journal where you can write your opinions, stories, events – whatever you want. Instead of paper and pen, you write it on a computer which keeps it in the internet. His immediate interruption was to enquire if I can write blogs too. I told him, yes and that I indeed am a blogger. You could see the pride of an Indian dad welling in him and overflowing in his face. He has not a clue what is a blogger but he was proud as proud can be that his son was a blogger. Go figure!! I am sure by this time he had figured out that if his son was a blogger, it probably is not a bad thing after all. Might be even a great thing 🙂 After all, his son does it 🙂
The second challenge is my dad relies on a few time-tested sources of information for himself. “Ami AT Dev-er dictionary -tey kothao khnuje pelam na”. Meaning, he could not find that word anywhere in AT Dev dictionary (a popular local English dictionary) . And as everybody in his neighborhood knows, if it is not in AT Dev dictionary, the entire English empire has no power to come up with any more new words. Mind you, the said AT Dev dictionary that he has is the 1973 edition – before even internet was around. Let alone blogs and bloggers.
The third challenge – and this is a tough one – is that he is hard of hearing. Over the years, watching him, I have concluded that being hard of hearing and having an infuriating need to understand everything going on around you is highly positively correlated. We got him a high end hearing aid. Just like his attitude towards dialysis, he just refuses to give in to that. I would barely start “Blogger maaney holo….” (‘blogger means…’) and he would rudely interrupt me “Smuggler??????” (this one needs no translation 🙂 ). Trying to suppress laughter while explaining a blogger is not something for the faint of the heart.
In any case, after a long (and enjoyable, I might add) conversation, he concluded (without being any the wiser on what a blogger is) “Koto ki sob beriyechhe. Koto kichhu dekhey gelam”!! (‘So many things have been invented.. So many things I got to learn before I die’).
Thinking later, I kicked myself for not going for a simple Machiavellian route – “Bloggers are people who have been completely cured after going thru dialysis”!!!! 🙂 “Tumio blogger hobey?” 🙂 🙂