' Good, Bad and Ugly

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Good, Bad and Ugly
By Richie John Pais

January 30, 2013

Human beings no matter how they are in few things do emote when the people they know are happy or sad. They use traditional words like “I am delighted to see you happy”, “Congratulations”, ”Sorry to hear that your father is no more”, “Please accept my sympathies”, depending on the situation. Some people may not know how to talk. They are short of words or they do not know how to construct a sentence in such situations. But by their emotions they show that they are with you. Eyes Speak here.

When others share our joy and grief we are moved. We find solace. That’s why people are invited for birthdays, weddings and other celebrations. Nobody holds these events privately unless he or she is the stingiest person on earth. People attend funerals without any invitation but by intimation.

In spite of so many changes in technology in this modern world, we have remained traditional. But rarely, we are also hurt when the dearest people do not turn up intentionally for happy occasions or funerals or when they do not visit the hospitals when our family members are sick.

Sharing our joy and happiness and not caring at happy and difficult times are two types of attitudes common in life. We call them good and bad. In addition to the above, we have a third type of a human tribe, the ugliest of all. The duty or modus operandi of these people who exhibit this attitude is - to hurt you- no matter you are happy or sad.

I am a poor writer as everybody knows (including me). Not poor in financial status but in quality. That is why I have to request, cajole or force the editors to publish my articles, stories or poems (my own classifications depending on size and stuff). “There are so many articles lined up. The moment we do not have any, we will publish your article” The editor of a famous newspaper tells me.

“Our readers like the quality. But at times, when they are bored with it, they tend to go for low quality stuff. So once in two months we publish poor quality articles as well. We respect even poor quality writers though we do not pay them” another editor had told me.

Quality or not, I am a quantity writer. I scribble a lot because I have lots of pens gifted by my in-laws as they feel pens are the cheapest and ‘fittest’ gift for me. Somehow my articles get published. Once when I was checking my ‘Published Articles’ file, I was amazed to find out that I could compile ten books. A foolish and most foolish friend of mine supported me and said “Just try, who knows, you may be the greatest writer on earth. Unless you publish your work, nobody knows your worth. Just hold a book release ceremony. All books will get sold instantly”.

I decided to take out a single book first. Other nine will follow if the first one is a success.

We kept a book release ceremony for which people from all walks of life like readers leaders, pleaders etc. were invited. Thinkers & drinkers too were not left out. Good attended, bad were very busy. But that was fine because if all had attended we would run out of refreshments and coffee. When we invite people for any occasion, we all want only few to attend though we force all of them.

 A called my friend, the ‘most foolish’ because on the book release ceremony he did not himself buy my book nor others. Only my father, mother, brother and wife acted like buying and posed for photos. They did not pay. Later they returned the books saying my readers might want them. They did not want any shortage of supply to meet the heavy ‘demand’.

A lady who visited my home almost every day in the pretext of talking to my wife came to my house after weeks. My wife does not talk to her at all. But still calls her ‘A good friend of mine’ in her conversations with others. Every time she comes home my wife tells her “My hubby is free. Please talk to him”. This time too same thing happened. “You did not come for many days” I questioned.

“I was busy. I was reading Anton Chekov. O Henry, Leo Tolstoy, Mark Twain and Jeffrey Archer the great writers to name a few... You know” She said.

“Do you read them”? I quipped.

“Yes, they are the best in literature”

“So you are reading a lot of literature”.

 “Yes... Some foolish idiot people are also taking out silly books these days. They should stop writing. They should write like these great writers”

“Who took out the silly book? How will you tell others how to write good stuff?”

“Let’s forget about it. Bad is always bad”

“Tell me who Leo Tolstoy is?”

“Leo Tolstoy was an American writer”.

“Anton Chekov”?

“ British”.

“Good. Very good. That makes Archer a Russian and O Henry an Indian. May be Rabindranath Tagore was an Irishman. Let’s talk some other time” before I could finish, she just vanished.

My grandmother who was abandoned by her daughters breathed her last few days back. The funeral was held as she had to be buried. So many people turned up. But her own daughters did not come as they had already taken her ‘golden’ possessions when she was alive.

After three days of funeral, a mass was offered for my dead poor grandmother without her knowledge. After the mass, refreshments are always offered to people who attend. We came back home with remaining refreshments (idli wada, sheera and coffee) which were more than we ordered.

I was sitting with my maternal uncle in our portico. Memories were fresh. We could only talk about his mother and my grandma who suffered a lot during the last few years.

The same lady came there “Good morning… I think I have seen this man” she said

“He is my uncle who has come from Bombay to attend…” she stopped me while I spoke.. she said. “I am bit hungry”

I told my wife to bring something. She brought more than enough. The lady ate. “Nice sheera…. I see many people here.. Are you celebrating something”?. She tried to show that she was innocent and ignorant.

I knew it was not innocence or ignorance but nonsense. “My grandmother who was…” She did not allow me to talk.

“You know Raveena Tandon?”


“She is coming back into films”

“Is it?”

“You are not excited?”

“I have my own problems”

“She too had problems. May be that’s why she is coming back into films. Do you like Sridevi?”

“I have some other things to do”. I just walked out from there and stood near our gate. I am a strong man. But these people have the ability to make tears really roll down on anybody’s cheeks. My uncle who followed me said “It is common. I understand every bit of her. She is trying to project that she is your wife’s best friend. But your wife does not like her. This lady is in fact jealous of her. She has the habit of insulting people and ignoring things which happened. I do not know what type of disease is this”

The lady came out to the place we were standing and said “Ok. I want to study more on Anton Chekov and want to go and see my best friend’s Grandma who is suffering from cold”

I told her with a lower voice “Please go. You must do all these things. But before you go, I want to tell you something.”

“Tell me”

“My book never got released. And my grandma did not die. Bye”. She increased her speed of walking.


Richie Pais Archives:



Comments on this article
Donad Roche, Kodial ani RuzaigarFriday, February 01, 2013
GOOD BAD UGLY,...GAD SAD OCD problems are common. The lady wants your yammy food and your Konkani' Kolovari' book in English. Dear RJP you are very clever in making observations and using it as humour . Thanks for entertaining us thro' this column of Daiji. Your anger reminds me a saying from American Journalist, Carl Hiaasen, "Good satire comes from anger. It comes from a sense of injustice, that there are wrongs in the world that need to be fixed". Good luck Richie Pais.
Comment on this message     

T.DSouza, MangaloreThursday, January 31, 2013
Good article about what happens in life. Looks like you have really cared for your grand mother without expecting anything in return. God will bless you ten times more than what you have done when you grow old. What goes around comes around. We should always remember this when we care for others. One advice though....do not be too ugly to your neighbour, may be she needs some love and affection too!
Comment on this message     

C.G.Shenoy, MangllurkarThursday, January 31, 2013
Good Bad Ugly,yummy yummy RJP, your friend seems to be a great Pagly! Intersing write up...keep it up...Good Luck!
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