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Way of the yak, yak...

Indrajit Hazra writes the excerpts from the pages of the imagined weekly diaries of Hollywood star Richard Gere.

entertainment Updated: Apr 21, 2007 02:56 IST

Saturday, April 14: I need an image makeover... I mean a reincarnation. I’m getting tired of being that American guy who hangs out with the Dalai Lama. This AIDS awareness trip to India is fine, but I need to make people know a new Richard Gere. I’ve got it! I'll be the dude who is the star in Chicago and that other blockbuster, Shall We Dance? That’ll be refreshing!

Sunday, April 15: Whoa! The people here love me! Especially after I told them that India actually won the 1962 war against China. I mean, it did spiritually, you know.

Monday, April 16: Damn! It seems that my plan has backfired. There I was getting the group of truckdrivers eating from my hands and telling them how to boycott Chinese condoms, when Shilpa blew it for me! It was I who was supposed to be vilified across India for publicly kissing her! It was my effigies that were supposed to be burnt! It was I who threw her back in my 58-year-old arms like I threw Jennifer back in Shall We Dance? But it turns out that no one in the audience had even seen the movie! Worse, Shilpa is taking all the credit for being obscene! Hel-lo, I’m the guy from American Gigolo! I’m the guy who picked up a prostitute in Pretty Woman—how’s that for spreading AIDS awareness? And now some Indian producer is talking about a film tentatively called Gori Nehin Tho Kya Hain, which apparently means something deep, in which Shilpa plays herself and Tom Hank will play me!

Tuesday, April 17: As I was checking out of the hotel, someone who I thought was a fan approached me. I even took my pen out from my most flattering pocket. But instead of wanting an autograph-or a kiss-she icily said, “How could you make that popaddam girl even more famous?” Before hurtling off, she said her name was Jade and if I was interested in reality TV I should get in touch with her.

Wednesday, April 18: It’s lovely in Kathmandu. Thinking of talking out against China with this politician here named Prachanda. Seems the understanding sort.

Thursday, April 19: Er, turns out that this Prachanda dude is a Maoist. So here I am, trying to get in touch with the Dalai Lama or my agent in California, whoever picks up the phone first, so that I can get out of here.

Friday, April 20: Spreading the message of safe sex in Mongolia. My audience comprises three men and 17 yaks. I think this is going to be a great, new career move.