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Off the cuff: Can you name my new country?

”We should have our own country,” I told my wife, after reading that an Indian godman on the run had bought an island off Ecuador and declared it his nation. “Don’t be crazy,” said my wife. “Managing this apartment is tough enough and you don’t get good house help anymore,’ she said, running her finger on the dusty bookshelf. “It will be great to print our own currency. We will call it the ‘Moolah’. The printers in the market today are just amazing and I have a friend who is a super graphic designer. Maybe we can also 3D print our new home,” I said dreamily. “Which lender will give you a mortgage to buy a country? ” asked my wife, as she wrote down a long list of things to do for our new maid who is multilingual and speaks three languages, and stuck it on the fridge with a magnet.
“No, not a new name, what will be your title since you will be heading this new glorious nation. And which country will recognise it first? You will need an emissary." Mahmood Saberi “We can invent our own language, one that is easy to spell, unlike English,” I said. “We can keep out people we do not like and there will be no visa on arrival. Maybe the maid can be in charge of security at the airport. She is a toughie.” Incidentally, a godman in India is something like a Marvel comic book hero. He can see through walls and see events in two different places at the same time. Just as Superman or Spiderman is loved by the comic book populace, a godman is also revered, but unlike the super heroes, the godman does not wear a cape but has a felicity with words, is always smiling and is more like the villain, Joker. This godman, who goes by the name Nithyananda, claimed he could speak to cows and has cured 82 children of blindness. “The godman has named his country, Kailaasa and is seeking UN recognition,” I said. “Isn’t that the Dothraki title, meaning, the wife of the Khal, in the Game of Thrones,” I said. “Let me Google it,” said my wife and after a few moments said, “That is Khaleesi.” “Kailaasa will be another country for the prime minister to fly to,” she said cheekily. “We should have our own airline,” I said. “Maybe we can seek Vijay Mallya’s help.” “Hey, we can grow our own onions and give them free to Indians and Italians to cook their meals, since there seems to be a shortage of onions. Did you know that red onions can be eaten raw?” The onion shall be our national veggie,” I said. “Will there be a mall in your new country and home delivery of groceries,” asked my wife. “The last time you made me stay in the middle of a desert and all we could buy was ‘karak chai’ from a Malayali who ran a shack and claimed to be from my hometown. What will you call yourself?” she added. “Why do I have to change my name?” I said. “No, not a new name, what will be your title since you will be heading this new glorious nation. And which country will recognise it first? You will need an emissary. Maybe we can use the Zomato delivery guy temporarily to deliver our credentials?” said my wife, now really involved in the running of our new country. “I need to go shopping for new dresses. Maybe we can get someone to pay an official visit to our country. We will be aligned with everybody.” “I will go and write the National Anthem,” I said, humming the lyrics, “ta-da, ta-da, ta dim, dum-dum.” — Mahmood Saberi is a storyteller and blogger based in Bengaluru, India. Twitter: @mahmood_saberi More by the writer New Year: Time to be a better person...again Maharashtra: A political thriller in the land of Bollywood Off the cuff: Freedom of press in era of smartphones

”We should have our own country,” I told my wife, after reading that an Indian godman on the run had bought an island off Ecuador and declared it his nation.

“Don’t be crazy,” said my wife. “Managing this apartment is tough enough and you don’t get good house help anymore,’ she said, running her finger on the dusty bookshelf.

“It will be great to print our own currency. We will call it the ‘Moolah’. The printers in the market today are just amazing and I have a friend who is a super graphic designer. Maybe we can also 3D print our new home,” I said dreamily. “Which lender will give you a mortgage to buy a country? ” asked my wife, as she wrote down a long list of things to do for our new maid who is multilingual and speaks three languages, and stuck it on the fridge with a magnet.

“No, not a new name, what will be your title since you will be heading this new glorious nation. And which country will recognise it first? You will need an emissary.”

Mahmood Saberi

“We can invent our own language, one that is easy to spell, unlike English,” I said. “We can keep out people we do not like and there will be no visa on arrival. Maybe the maid can be in charge of security at the airport. She is a toughie.”

Incidentally, a godman in India is something like a Marvel comic book hero. He can see through walls and see events in two different places at the same time.

Just as Superman or Spiderman is loved by the comic book populace, a godman is also revered, but unlike the super heroes, the godman does not wear a cape but has a felicity with words, is always smiling and is more like the villain, Joker.

This godman, who goes by the name Nithyananda, claimed he could speak to cows and has cured 82 children of blindness.

“The godman has named his country, Kailaasa and is seeking UN recognition,” I said. “Isn’t that the Dothraki title, meaning, the wife of the Khal, in the Game of Thrones,” I said.

“Let me Google it,” said my wife and after a few moments said, “That is Khaleesi.”

“Kailaasa will be another country for the prime minister to fly to,” she said cheekily.

“We should have our own airline,” I said. “Maybe we can seek Vijay Mallya’s help.”

“Hey, we can grow our own onions and give them free to Indians and Italians to cook their meals, since there seems to be a shortage of onions. Did you know that red onions can be eaten raw?” The onion shall be our national veggie,” I said.

“Will there be a mall in your new country and home delivery of groceries,” asked my wife. “The last time you made me stay in the middle of a desert and all we could buy was ‘karak chai’ from a Malayali who ran a shack and claimed to be from my hometown. What will you call yourself?” she added.

“Why do I have to change my name?” I said.

“No, not a new name, what will be your title since you will be heading this new glorious nation. And which country will recognise it first? You will need an emissary. Maybe we can use the Zomato delivery guy temporarily to deliver our credentials?” said my wife, now really involved in the running of our new country.

“I need to go shopping for new dresses. Maybe we can get someone to pay an official visit to our country. We will be aligned with everybody.”

“I will go and write the National Anthem,” I said, humming the lyrics, “ta-da, ta-da, ta dim, dum-dum.”

— Mahmood Saberi is a storyteller and blogger based in Bengaluru, India. Twitter: @mahmood_saberi

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