Babubhai Katara is a despicable man. Last week he was in the news for having been caught red-handed while trying to smuggle a lady abroad by passing her as his wife under a fake passport. What's funny is that he'd cleared the immigration and the customs check and both of them were merrily seated in the airplane with less than half an hour to go for the takeoff and that's when, that's exactly when his crookedly malicious fate decided to shake a leg. A fellow lady passenger aboard lost her passport.
The officials started pulling out all the documents and in a routine check asked Babubhai Katara's supposed wife what her name was and in a lyrical moment, she will rue every single day of her life, the lady blurted out her real name of Paramjeet, instead of the name she should've given, Sarada Ben, the name on the fake passport she’d used. Needless to say, with that swift stroke Babubhai Katara's political and personal life has come to naught. That he deserved it is beyond any doubt. But that the disaster could've been avoided if the woman hadn't been so idiotic is equally obvious.
Now at this point I want you to spare a thought for Babubhai. What wrong did he do in scheming it up? So perfectly planned. And the only thing beyond his control got him into the deepest shit ever for no fault of his. Come to think of it, it's not the first time that a man has got screwed because of a woman around him.
Since the very beginning, women have proved too tempting a presence for man to ignore and too devastating a force to survive alongside with. Think of Eve coaxing Adam to go for the forbidden fruit and damning all humanity in the years to come.
Think of Samson revealing the secret of his locks to Delilah and his consequent capture by the Philistines.
Think of Draupadi mocking Duryodhana in her palatial abode and thus paving the way for Duryodhana to swear for revenge.
Casino, a movie based on the true story of gangster Frank Rosenthal played by the inimitable De Niro, is another classic example of how a man did everything for and yet was betrayed by the love of his life. In Frederico Garcia Larco’s popular play , Blood Wedding , the bride runs away with her childhood sweetheart on the day of her wedding. Her childhood sweetheart and the groom kill each other in the end. One wouldn’t have imagined that Macbeth would murder Duncan if it were not the Lady’s instigation. Everything came to dust. What was the bloody need for Paris to steal Helen and give way to the most important war waged in Greek mythology. Two fantastic warriors, Hector and Achilles were lost in the fight for a woman. To be precise, somebody else's woman.
Whether you like it or not, plays, books and movies are based on societal influences and observations by writers and directors. It’s not as if Shakespeare suddenly got a brainwave to script a character like Lady Macbeth. Shakespeare and his ilk draw from characters they’ve seen around in their society. More often than not, your favorite movie turns out to be something that you relate to. If playwrights long back could identify characters like that, they must’ve stemmed from real characters like Larco’s bride or Lady Macbeth in the society. For the record , the phrase Femme Fatale originated in 1912.
Hell, even Shane Warne could’ve played the 2003 World Cup if it were not for his mother giving him pills to look good. That’s probably stretching it a bit but my point is that when it comes to women , I think a lot of us men stop seeing reason.
What gets me to write on this topic is an advice I’ve been giving a friend to let go off a girl he’s been clinging on to. Irrespective of any advice that I can give him to part ways, he’s been hoping against hope that things will work out. And I can see why. I think women have this innate quality to get men to do a lot of things that they otherwise wouldn’t. A smile here, a nod there , a wink here , a nudge at the back, any little goddamn thing will make men go weak in their brains to begin with, followed by the knees and God knows where else. Try as I might, I can’t get this friend to forget his lady and after a point one has to just leave it at that.
And just at the point when I’m about to curse this friend of mine for not being able to see reason or logic, I’m reminded of Al Pacino’s immortal line in Scent of a Woman:
“Women. What could you say? Who made 'em? God must've been a fucking genius. Hair. They say , hair's everything you know. Have you ever buried your nose in a mountain of curls and just wanted to go to sleep forever? Or lips. And when they touched yours were like that first swallow of wine after you just crossed the desert…”
And I smile and tell G, “It’s alright. Go for her… What can I say?”
Maybe when Neil Diamond paid US$ 150,000,000 as divorce settlement for his wife Marcia Murphey and remarked “She was worth every penny”, maybe , he let the curls and the lips get the better of him, his reason and his money.
Just like all men before and after him and how can we blame him for that?