Are we as a nation slightly more serious than we should be? While all these folks from the slighted veteran actor to that local religious fundamentalist who’s made it to the evening news may make us think otherwise, we Indians have, contrary to perception, been a guffawing lot.
The problem may stem from the fact that we wear two jackets — one, where even liberal Indians wearing a supercilious air either get easily offended or are worried about others getting easily offended; two, the overwhelming bindaas.
The fact that we have so many ‘politically incorrect’ jokes doing the rounds — and increasingly via the ‘privately public’ domain of the mobile text message — should automatically suggest that we are a bunch of people with thick skins and wide grins. But come out into the full glare of the public platform and you suddenly see a whole litany of complaints and woes that make us wonder whether we’re citizens of a confident country or hyperventilating, hypersensitive kids in a school.
The story of India can be seen as a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma with a joke at its core. If that makes you feel slighted or less of a serious chap in the eyes of your reflection, don’t take offence, it was just a joke.