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  Opinion   Columnists  25 Dec 2021  Shobhaa De | 2021 was better than 2020! Will 2022 sizzle & crackle?

Shobhaa De | 2021 was better than 2020! Will 2022 sizzle & crackle?

Irreverent, provocative, opinionated... Shobhaa De has been challenging status quo for four decades... and is at her best when she punctures inflated egoes. Readers can send feedback to
Published : Dec 25, 2021, 2:40 am IST
Updated : Dec 25, 2021, 2:40 am IST

Europe shuts down, New Year’s parties are cancelled across the globe, we in India are less despondent and generally optimistic about 2022


It is THAT time of the year, folks, which encourages “mooh fut” people like me to offer unsolicited advice and make gratuitous comments about everyone and everything, since hey… another year has ended! We have survived, the world is still spinning, and Boris Johnson has produced another bambino.

Omicron? What’s that? Who cares? As Europe shuts down, country by country, and New Year’s parties are cancelled across the globe, we in India are less despondent and generally optimistic about 2022. No special reason… it’s our DNA! We laugh at the wrong moments, and cry for no reason. We live in permanent denial, staring at the stars for celestial guidance during any and every crisis. Our major decisions are often taken by the venal neighbourhood astrologer who has exploited the family for two generations — by wrecking even that tiny bit of security and self-confidence. We all need to battle demons. So what? So long as the Kashi Corridor is getting mega attention and Aurangzeb has been put in his place, finally, India will be just fine!

Not sure how fine Yogi Adityanath is feeling, though. Let me begin by offering advice to Uttar Pradesh’s chief minister: Yogiji… You were totally sidelined by Modiji at the Kashi Corridor jamboree, which was orchestrated to the last micro-detail for optics designed to make our great leader resemble an emperor — for the highest impact on social media platforms. Bhalo! The historic event was shot as a mega-blockbuster with just one hero… and that hero wasn’t you, Yogiji! Maak kariye. In fact, Yogiji, you were treated like a junior artiste… an extra, in filmi parlance. Ab dekho… UP elections mein hota hai kya….

Sourav Ganguly… that last delivery was not very well delivered, boss! Some would call it shabby and deliberately wide. Virat Kohli is India’s cricketing hero… a tiger whose roar is as lethal as his bite. Indian cricket fans will always be proud of his stupendous achievements, no matter the dirty politics of cricket. Bad deliveries are bad deliveries. The timing was as off as the sneaky handling of our team’s biggest asset. Woh bhi… on the eve of the major South Africa tour. Dadagiri also has its limits.

Harnaaz Sandhu, be careful when you swim in shark-infested waters. Doing balle balle to celebrate your big win as Miss Universe won you extra fans, but take a tip or two from your senior Priyanka Chopra, who won the Miss World pageant the year you were born! Now that’s a smart, global woman worth emulating in showbiz. She can mercilessly roast her husband and his family and still go back home to post loved-up pictures with him. Her career path, with Matrix as the latest trophy, has been phenomenal. She’s Panju, you’re Panju… hard-working and ambitious. Hire her Hollywood agent NOW!

Vicky-Katrina… making halwa for the hubby is fine. Making babies, also fine. But making movies is what you both do. Fans are eagerly looking for cues, now that Vicky is back on the sets and you, Katrina, are still showing off your mehndi and choodis. The sets are waiting… and remember… Tiger zinda hai!

Rahul Gandhi… errr… is he still around? Not on the ski slopes? Rahul Baba, do stay in chill mode, please…It suits you best. And helps voters to make better decisions, knowing you are leading a tension-free life, and leaving your mamacita and sister to do the heavy lifting. Though even they look like they’ve given up before the fight has even begun.

The Didi of West Bengal is keen on being the Dada of India… Why not? If anyone can change the course of the next national election in 2024, it is Mamata Banerjee. Didi… just be your feisty, aggressive, maddening self! It’s these personality traits that have made you the most feared woman in India. Take them on! Take them all on… decimate opponents as only you can! Khela hobey, with or without Sharad Pawar’s support.

Leena Nair… we love your Bollywood moves! The way you groove to motivate people is an exceptional talent, and you should get the frosty, snobby French to defrost by making them dance to your tune, both in the boardroom and on the dance floor. Just Chikni Chameli the hell out of them. Let them taste some fiery Mallu pepper curry, and spicy Kolhapuri Chivda. Chanel No. 5 is fabulous but our ittars are timeless. Spice up the global fashion scene Leela Kutty… we are counting on you!

As for you, R. Ashwin, bada aaya off-spinner! Your comments about feeling “crushed” by Ravi Shastri’s words are distinctly “off”, old chap. Stop behaving like a schoolboy, whingeing at this stage, when Ravi Shastri isn’t the team’s god. Suck up to Rahul Dravid, by all means. But backbiting like this shows you lack the spirit of sportsmanship. “Thrown under the bus’”, were you, lad? Learn from Anil Kumble and Kapil Dev… you rank third in the highest wicket-taker rankings, after these two, okay. Focus on the balls….

In this utterly silly season, we need a Santa with a sense of humour to jolly us along. Amit Shah can dress and look the part, but the bag of gifts seems empty! In place of energetic reindeer pulling the sleigh, we are stuck with lethargic donkeys. While touring Maharashtra, where the BJP failed to topple the MVA and the Thackerays, despite strenuous efforts, you, Sir, called your political opponents all kinds of names. That’s not a Santa thing to do. It’s more Banta than Santa, and nobody is saying “Ho Ho Ho”. Errrr… “Ho” is “yes” in Marathi.

Despite these ups and downs, madly enough, 2021 has ended better than 2020. And there’s hope 2022 will sizzle and crackle and soar… Omicron or no Omicron! So much good stuff to look forward to… movies, for one! And amazing OTT offerings, with fresh talent impressing viewers and grabbing eyeballs. Bring it on, Bollywood. One can always count on showbiz to put on a grand show during any crisis. Let the red-carpet roll… lots more airport looks and Maldivian biggini shots, please. Oh… Bebo needs to keep her mask on when she parties, or else, we’ll be devastated as a nation that Bebo and her babies have been kept apart because of an irritant called Covid. Uffff… such a party spoiler, this virus! To quote Kareena: “I hate you, Covid”. So do we all! Just go away, will ya?

See you on the other side, readers…

Till then… mask up, drink up… stay merry! Remember… Zindagi, ek safar hai suhana, yahan kal kya ho, kisne jaana….

Tags: omicron, new year, cm yogi adityanath, sourav ganguly
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi