“You can smell an Indian before you see or hear him” is a truism as old as the Himalayas.
Just the other day, I stumbled upon a furphy that Alexander the Great hurriedly scampered out of India after crushing the local king Porus not because his soldiers mutinied; au contraire, it seems the Emperor found the strange miasma surrounding the vast Indian countryside and the people so off-putting he went nauseous at the mere sound of the words “India” and “Indian,” an allergy that was to stay with the bloodthirsty warrior till his premature end a few months later.
“The swamps of Macedonia smell sweeter than these sweating savages,” the son of Philip raged as he gave the whip to Bucephalus’ side before furiously galloping out of Currystan where the Indus cascades down the mighty Himalayas.
Power of Curry
India kneeled before the aggression of the restless Alexander.
But the invincible conqueror turned tail before the overpowering aroma of curry.
Curry odor sticks to the Indian body like a damp shirt.
The hot medley of black pepper, asafoetida, ginger, coriander, and garlic that goes into the making of curry not only insinuates itself into every pore of the Indian body but creates a curry membrane a few feet above the ozone layer.
Of course, Indians are impervious to the bizarre curry odor born as they are in Currystan, and live surrounded by an ocean of curry-babies, curry-daddys, curry-moms, curry-buddies, curry-randis, curry-cousins and curry-corpses, all sailing through life in a Chicken Jalfreize aromatic haze.
Tell an Indian he smells weird and anon his Chappals (as we curry-hogs refer to our slippers and sandals) will jump into his hands before swiftly landing on your face a milli-second later.
Where curry is concerned, as far back as the Vedic age Indians developed anosmia to it (p.540 of The Thinker’s Thesaurus defines anosmia as loss of sense of smell).
I’m a proud card-carrying member of this vast, teeming curry herd that now numbers 1.6 billion (counting Indians and my cousins in PakistanTerroristan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Mauritius, Jamaica, Suriname and Trinidad).
Deprive me of curry for just eight hours and I start displaying serious withdrawal symptoms. Kinda like a White trader on Wall St without the evening cocaine fix and an Eastern European puta slurping his Vanilla milkshake.
After entering the New World, I remember back in the 20th century occasionally packing the South Indian ambrosia Pulihora (Tamarind rice) to office for lunch. The moment I opened the Pulihora container my White office-mates would shriek in horror. “OMG, Whaaat is This?,” before collectively retreating into the corridor where they’d whisper sotto voce about the incompetent Immigration authorities.
Back home, I’d blissfully ignored perfumes, colognes etc (Attar in India is used only by the shower-loathing members of the cartoon-hating religion). After all, in Currystan I was just another atom in the jetsam and flotsam of a billion curry atoms.
But when I moved to the New World things turned out to be different.
Appearances are all in the New World. Even minimum wage coolies at McDonald’s and Walmart daub themselves with cologne and perfume thanks to the almighty power of the “Buy Now, Pay Interest Forever” invention called credit card!
Any time I stepped out of my curry abode, I’d don some cologne or the other in a desperate effort, alas frequently futile, to mask the smell of Yennai Kathrikai, Poondu Kozhumbu or Pulihora clinging to my soul.
Stumbling Upon Good Luck
And so I’ve lived in uneasy fear amidst the curry-haters of the New World.
Don’t ask how I stumbled upon Bvlgari’s Man in Black. Continue reading »