Tag Archives: Shakespeare

No scarcity of Jacks of all!

Click here to read in Gujarati
Today, just for some change in topic and also to entertain you, I am here with this Article. Before I compose some episodes from my past memory, I would like to twist the word ‘Jack’ slight differently. Automobile owners know about jack and we see that this workshop tool bears the loads of all vehicles from light to heavy always in its position down on earth as a servant, but never up as a master! ‘Jack’ is a proper noun, famous in nursery rhymes also such as “Jack and Jill, went up the Hill” and “Little Jack Horner, sat in the Corner”. But here, I have no concern with all those Jacks.

In figure of speech or idiomatic narration, the meaning of ‘Jack of all, but master of none’ is related with a person and not with the jack, the tool that I mentioned earlier. This saying is applied to a person who might be competent with many skills but not outstanding performer in any one. One more shadow meaning, contradictory to above while speaking only ‘Jack of all’, is as a compliment to somebody who can handle the most situations smartly.

We might have witnessed many Jacks who try to be a grocer with just a single dry ginger*. Their little learning, sometimes, might prove to be harmful or dangerous to us. We should be careful of such boastful persons pretending that they know everything. We should think for 999 times before having their help for the solutions of our problems. We should salute them at the distance of 5.48064 meters. The Linear measuring unit Gaj (2 feet)** in Gujarati is out of date and therefore I have converted it into metric calculation!

Now, let us come to the main link of our talk with illustrations of some 1.5 times wiser (દોઢ ડાહ્યા)guys. They are always proud of declaring them as ‘Jacks of all”. The world is over-crowded with them and therefore we have never to face with any short-supply of them! Such a stranger happens to meet you easily on a Railway platform. He is there to see off his relatives. He turns towards you and begins to talk with you. He favors you with an unsolicited advice that the particular last night train always runs crowded and if you have no reservation, you should better go to the yard from where the train is going to arrive on the platform. You follow his advice, go there, occupy the upper berth and sleep down. Early in the morning, when you wake up, you find yourself and your compartment on the very same Railway Station. Now, you realize that the compartment was dropped off to be shunted to that particular train.

Above episode is not fabricated, but it bears the label of fact with it. I have presented it in a style as if you-you have been the hero of that comical tragedy. Still, I’ll not let you go as I want to give you the roll of another hero of one more episode. But, for this, my prime condition is that you must be a male because I wish to send you to a barber’s shop for your shaving; yes, only for shaving, not for getting your hair-cut. Morning hours are always busy in this industry, but you are lucky. You enter a shop where all chairs are vacant. Perhaps, the owner only is there as his staff is yet to resume duties. You occupy one chair and primary job for creating lather with soap starts to soften your beard covering the territory of your face.

Now, you count the minutes! One, Three, Five… Oh! Ten!!! That fellow is not prepared to take razor in hand and start shaving. You presume that he is doing so just to provide you an extremely close shave service with no irritation. But, the layer of lather is getting thicker and thicker. You look like a Santa-Claus with white artificial beard in front mirror. Being the brush very hard, you feel irritated in hair roots, skin and mussels of your cheeks. Now, you cry out, “Why, why, O Mister! What’s wrong with you? What are you doing?”

In hesitating tone of speech, the poor fellow whispers, “Sorry Sir! I am not the hair-dresser. I am the friend of the owner of this shop. He has gone somewhere on bicycle saying that he would soon return. I thought I may save your shave-time with this primary job. He will be just coming. Excuse me, Sir!”

But, you are not losing your temper because you are confused. You are in custody of the soul of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. ‘To laugh and not to laugh’ is a question! Besides, ‘To be and not to be angry’ is also a bigger question for you! Lastly, Pointing to him a chair, you say simply: “Have your seat there and be relaxed, my friend (you stupid!).”

Just before, the lather of soap might begin to get dry and particles fall down, the owner enters the shop as a savior of the dummy barber to bring him out of his miserable situation. No sooner does the owner step into the shop, the helpless guy quits the premises carrying his pitiful face similarly just as a mouse runs away seeing a cat.

The mouse of your computer is in grip of your hand to scroll further, am I right? But sorry! Your another episode is over, my Article is over and my time is also over here!

Byes… see you again,

With regards,

I am

– Valibhai Musa
August 30, 2008

* સૂંઠના ગાંગડે ગાંધી થવું!

** નવ ગજના નમસ્કાર!


Posted by on August 30, 2008 in Article, લેખ, gujarati, Human behavior, Humor, MB


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The Square World – I

Click here to read in Gujarati
title of my post, today, may seem to be surprising and perhaps misleading to my Readers. It has been proved and established, geographically and astronomically, that the earth is round; but, here it is said ‘square’. I won’t keep you any long in hankering state, but clarify straightway that I am going to talk about the jails, their cells – The Square World.

This Article, being somewhat lengthy, will be published in parts conveniently. To make my Article universal, I have ignored some specifications. My purpose and attempt behind this blog post is only to awake the feelings of my Readers to condemn such acts against humanity and maintain the mind to think over universal brotherhood.

All these chapters narrate the variety of harassments and tortures to the detainees by the cruel jail authorities. These jails are from a dictatorial rule of Government and one cannot hope even in a dream that any one or moreguidelines or rules of human rightsfor prisoners may beobserved or honored by them which have been internationally approved by Human Rights Commissions. Peter Beneson says, “Torture is banned; but in two-thirds of the world’s countries, it is still being committed in secret. Too many Governments still allow wrongful imprisonment, murderunder the title of encounter or ‘disappearance” to be carried out by their officials with impunity”. The most of democratic countries, no doubt, observe these norms, but they cannot upgrade the jails as some western countries do.

The inmates of prisons canbe categorized as convicts, under-trial and detainees. They may be in any category, but we should not forget that, after all, they are human beings. They have some basic rights such as enough space for lying and sleeping, proper sanitation, standard and sufficient food, purified water, seasonal clothing, medical facilities, reasonable wages of their work for their families at home etc..

Now, I’ll quote you some examples which I have collected from various sources to describe such hells on earth that will shake you from the inner of your heart and you will immediately pray to the God, if you are a Believer, that He may save anybody to be the guest (!) of such miserable places. No doubt, everybody has to face the Day of Judgment as per most of the religions; but there will be punished only those confirmed sinners who might have committed unforgivable sins which may also be out of the God’s discretion for the sake of His promises for reward for good deeds and warning of punishment for evil deeds though He is Kind and Merciful.

Generally, in any dictatorial or monarchyrule of government; the detainees are kept in such secret places or unknown jails that their relatives cannot know their whereabouts. These types of rulers do not honor internationally approved code of conduct to be dealt with the detainees and under-trial prisoners as they are conditioned minded people and they always are worried for their existence and safety of their kingdom or rule. Therefore, they always keep their subject under the pressure of terror. It is the basicprinciple of judiciary that any accused should not be considered as guilty until one’s guilt is proved. But to such “Jungle rule” type of authorities have no concern with such ideology of natural justice.

Now, I come to the point and join you with me to raise your feeble cry as we are helpless except we can burn our hearts and utter the words “shame … shame !” towards such cruelty against humanity. Please go on and bewitness of those miserable prisoners who may prefer death if they are allowed rather than to live in such a hell.

The directive of Human Rights for prisoners clearly mentions that any detainee should not be interrogated at night; but here what we see, go ahead:

Inside this square world, you can see Blindfolds, Shackles. Handcuffs and Whips as the weapons of the torturers to be used against the helpless prisoners for their true or false confessions of their so called crimes. You can see blood on the bare backs of these poor fellows. Here, at past midnight also, the detainees are summoned. They may be half asleep due to their anxiety and fear, but the cruel authorities have no concern with the odd time and they can summon anybody at any time for investigation or interrogation as per their mood and willingness. There is no end of such inquiries. They are being beaten cruelly till they are bled and tortured till their nerves are wrecked. The heavy metal door creaks with a squeak harsh enough to send their blood tingling. Every time, the guard turns the keys in the hole, the door unlocks in stages with a sharp metal voice. The inmates sleeping in various positions due to lack of enough space sit erect, with all alertness, like a flock of frightened sheep, expecting the slaughterer to enter the pen and make his pick.

Now, my Readers, hold on your heart and read further. But before that, I clarify that the characters coming before you in turn will be named in single Alphabet beginning with “A” and so on further. “What is in name?’ as in a Shakespeare’s play, we have no concern with names.

A young man of 20, Mr. A, stark naked except a brief loin cloth is pushed in the cell. His head and eyebrows are totally shaved and moustache half-shaven. Blood streams from his chest, back, arms, thighs and legs. He is chastised with lashes which have turned his skin violet. To his ghost-like appearance, nobody in the cell dares to glance at him. His helplessness and distress move all the prisoners of the cellfrom the deepest of their hearts. Then follows a dangerous officer with a cunning smile on his thick lips.

He shouts addressing to that poor creature, “Tell them of your sins why we have treated you thus.” And the young ghost mutters, “I had been here few months ago and after some formal inquiries, I was released. As I went home, I informed some of my relatives and family friends about the whereabouts of their missing members. I told them that they have been detained and that I have met them. Now, once again, I am arrested with the charge of having disclosed the secret of the state.”

The butcher-like officer once again shouts loudly and says, “Did you hear him?” All the rest answer in a chorus, “Yes, we did hear.” The message is conveyed. The young man hardly able to walk is then pushed out of the door, taken away to where nobody knows.

– Valibhai Musa
Dtd.: 13th December, 2007
[ Continues on Part – II ]

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Posted by on December 14, 2007 in લેખ, Humanity, MB


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A chosen paragraph from a letter to my adopted sister is presented here below:

“Dear sister,

As you had told me once, when I was given lift in your car while returning from our religious place, that which relationship as brother and sister could be considered greater whether the real – related with blood or such bound with feelings. There was my quick reply that it depends upon the understandings of each other. Your straight question was in reference to our mutual relationship as brother and sister.

To clarify my point, I would like to illustrate you an example from the play – “King Lear” written by Shakespeare. The same question as you put before me was asked by the king to his daughters one by one regarding the relationship of the father and daughters. The answer of the youngest daughter was based on reality which King Lear disliked, but later on in the worst times, he realized that the answers of the rest daughters were artificial just to please him and the youngest one was right.” My sister, our life is a school where we have continuously to learn till the last breath of our life. Love of any category is not dependent on words if it is true.”

7th July, 1997

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Posted by on May 5, 2007 in લેખ, MB


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