One of my peeps, as in snarky, Tanglish*-speaking person of Madras** origin, tires of Cincinnati and visits the Creation Museum. It’s great stuff, so please head to his blog and read it all.
This paragraph, in particular, cracked me up because of its conclusion.
Cincinnati is a large city with levels of urban excitement that slightly exceed that of a doped bear in hibernation. So when I found myself staring at a 2 week long stay, I was worried about what I would do in my leisure time. That was when my colleague Harish … pointed out that the Creation Museum was just a few miles from downtown Cincinnati, my religious (and blogging) instincts fired up and we found ourselves at 2800, Bullitsburg Church road, Petersburg, Kentucky on a Sunday afternoon. Kentucky is filled with places that end in “burg” and for some reason it reminded me of whiskey and hooded white men wielding torches that burned crosses, so we decided to play it safe. I became Christopher (“Chris”) Asher and my friend, Harish Ravindran became (as a result of his undying fanboyism) Harris Jeyaraj. I even told him that he could explain his last name to evangelical Christians as “Victory of the Kingdom of God” or something to that effect.
… I am always disappointed when my precisely nurtured stereotypes fail to come true.
Such cross-cultural exploration has distinct advantages. Like repeatedly reminding us that the more humans are different the more we are the same, superstition is not the specialty of a single group of people, we are all whackjobs so it’s a miracle humanity has done anything constructive, etc.
… Now, lifetime members are a different species altogether. They pay $495 and are people who seriously believe that (barring the engineering that built the museum itself) science is generally bad and that (a specific English version of ) the Bible is literally true. But then I have met VHP-RSS type uncles in Chennai who believe that India had the Pushpaka Vimaana thousands of years before the Wright brothers. And people drop jewellery into the Hundi at Tirupati, so to each his own I guess.
Not to mention the creation of happy-making neologisms such as Wyoming Tyranoswareshwara Iyer and the Vadivel Theory of the Origin of Man.
* Tamil-English. Think Tex-Mex, but funnier. Also, snarky Madrasi is a redundancy.
** I refuse to call it Chennai.