American

I haven’t been able to work for any campaign this year. Did some phone banking. And am hoping to do some election-day moniter-y stuff. Or perhaps, I will just drive people to vote. Next elections, I will vote.

I don’t know if people still remember that Raed Jarrar was denied boarding on a plane because his tshirt had Arabic on it. It prompted many conversations but one argument that struck me was made by moacir – who focused on the Equal Protection amendment as opposed to the usual 1st amendment stuff.

With the help of Stephen Marlowe, Blake Wentworth, Prithvi Datta Chandra Shobhi, Sunit Singh, Ravikrisnha Reddy, moacir and I designed the following piece of hipster-protest.

Daily Chosun Link III: Pukkah Edition

I am a _tad_overwhelmed at the moment. But this weekend, I will post my talk from Madison. And I have some long languishing post on teaching postcolonialism. In the meantime, with no ironic hipsterness, I present a Daily Chosun Link ‘o da day: Avoiding the Stigma of Being an ‘Ajumma’. The checklist at the bottom helps you identify yourself as a Ajumma or a Lady. One handy tip-off: “In the sauna, should the ajumma let out a fart and people stare at her, she will just leave without saying sorry.” I forsee a full-scale comedy routine: You might be a Ajumma if …

Most crucially, I call to your attention, this fragment from that brilliant article: “it is pukkah to refrain …” !! Anyone else going “!!” with me? Pucka or pukka, meaning solid, true, right, done, ripe, is an old hindi word that made it into EIC english fairly early. The OED has a reference from 1698: “FRYER Acc. E. India & P. 205 The Maund Pucka at Agra is double as much as the Surat Maund”. Another reference c. 1776: “Trial of Nundocomar 102/1 Maha Rajah said it was necessary to witness it to make it pukka”.

Hobson Jobson gives us a fuller rundown. It notes that the EIC took the word to China: “Dis pukka sing-song makee show / How smart man make mistake, galow” from the Leland, Pidgin English Sing-Song.

Um, anyways. But, Pukka as ‘correct’ in Korean-English? How did that happen? Apparently, it means something in Vietnamese. And in Russian it means Wall of Partition? What is this un-pukkah biz? Etymologists want to know.

Eid Saeed

Today, I will not go to work. I will stay at home and finish up decorating. We will all wear our new clothes and hug our parents and grandparents. Friends will stop by all day – dressed fresh and clean. We will exchange those three-pump hugs that I can never get right – left shoulder, right shoulder, left shoulder? – and drink Rooh Afza and eat Saywiyyan with almonds. The kids will run around, shiny and jingly. They will climb on everyone and stand before us – hands extended for their eidi. .

Dinner will get served at 2. Nihari. Biryani. Cars will leave, packed to the hilt with relatives, to houses far and near. At every stop, a new embrace. A new smile. We will, maybe fight about the movie to watch. Or maybe some cricket match will be on the t.v. Our pockets will be heavy with the cash-gifts. We will remember that we haven’t seen someone all day and everyone will rush to call and be the first to wish Eid.

It will be the best day, ever.

Eid Mubarak and, as someone else put it, a late Diwali Mubarak to all my gentle readers. May you and yours always remain together.

earlier: Eid and Eid.

Audacious Hopeful

Do you think he'd wear a CM t-shirt?Barack Obama appeared on NBC’s Meet the Press today and acknowledged that he is now considering running for Prez in 2008. Looks like Oprah’s campaigning is paying off– let’s hope she can influence elections as much as she can booksales. He’s out on the campaign trail right now, stumping for the November election and his new book, which is #1 on Amazon today. This guy is outta control, he’s got every voter base covered. Some quotes from the Larry King transcript:

Soccer moms:

KING: What do you make of all of this, Senator? You’re on the cover of “Time,” the book is out, everyone’s talking about you what’s that like?

OBAMA: Well, you know, it’s a lot of fuss and, you know, fortunately I’ve got a wife at home who is more interested in whether I rinsed out the dishes and put them in the dishwasher, which you know I think keeps me grounded. Continue reading “Audacious Hopeful”