Sunday, June 3, 2007

Wasted time

Blogs are private spaces. Some bloggers allow comments. Some bloggers do not allow comments and talk to themselves. It is a vent, a release of some sort. I had posted a few comments in a private blog called Sepiamutiny - where many Indian-Americans share their worldviews, personal experiences and opinions - in response to a blogpost and was treated in a very bad manner. I was called a hindu extremist fundamentalist psycho, a roti, a FOB (which means Fresh Off the Boat), a woman-hater, a writer of jingoistic blogs, a sexually frustrated person and a nutcase. I was accused of trolling a blogger named ANNA, who writes for Sepiamutiny. The evidence was my IP address. I have never done that. I have no interest in her at all. My post on India's national anthem - a truly moving poem which billions of Indians have deep respect for - was slighted as 'stupid shit'. Nobody said a word.

The entire post is here (please click on it to read):
My last post (originally post #76) was deleted by the site administrators, as if they have banned me. My final response is here (please click on it to read):
Honestly speaking, I have no desire to belong to that community. I have no hatred really. I have no attraction either. I am indifferent to these people.

I used to visit Sepiamutiny because I believe migration is going to be a phenomenon in the years to come. There are some brilliant good bloggers who write for Sepiamutiny. Vinod, Ennis, Siddhartha, Amardeep, and Namrata wrote some brilliant interesting posts there, and I had really enjoyed reading them.

Updated: June 12


Ardy said...

The fact that they banned you on Sepia is so friggin screwed up man, its totally absurd. I have noticed in the past too that Naina removes comments she is uncomfortable with, Shite!!! Her comments on the Holi post too were not very well thought out and so she closed comments on the post when people got a little incensed.

I just sent an email to the bloggers requesting them to remedy this, hopefully they will. I am a big fan of the writing of Amardeep, Ennis, Vinod. Anna is fun too and I like her spirit and I enjoy the blog for the very reasons you point out in your Migration post. Abhijeet and Siddhartha are cool too, I wished Namrata wrote more often. But who knows, after my email I may get banned too :-) I did like most of the stuff you wrote, a lot better than some of the comments we see there.

Holden Caulfield said...


Thanks for visiting. I see you work for AID. That's great. I work for AID too.

I will never write comments on Sepiamutiny. It has been a waste of time for me really. These people have a certain way of looking at things. Can you imagine them writing about another religion like that? I think these people are quite shrewd and cunning - they way they twist and turn and use clever turns of phrase. Enjoy Holi, there's no need to pay attention to confused people with confused agenda. I am no fundamentalist.

The way this poser OSN (I bet she is no Chinese-Indian) told her story is hilarious. These bloggers talk amongst themselves, remove posts, rewrite posts and write using different handles. Now I have doubts if these virtual people are for real. The actual post here was asking,'Where are the anna-trolls?' in response to this accusation. Now because there are no anna trolls from me anywhere on the blog, it was removed and replaced with "SM Intern: nice". Amazing stuff!

Don't worry about getting banned. I care two hoots. All this interaction over the internet means nothing. Thank you for working for AID. It is important work. I wish to be anonymously lurking on the web, though.

Dipanjan said...

That exchange was quite surreal.

Keep writing. And thanks for the Mohiner clip. Watched them live at JU campus 12 years ago. Happy memories.

Runa said...


I don't want to comment on whether your being banned was justified or not.But I have realized that SM is completely biased towards 2nd gens.

What was offensive was the stupid shit remark about the National anthem which was in really bad taste

Holden Caulfield said...

Thanks, Dipanjan. I love Mohiner Ghoraguli. I miss Kolkata so much. I am going home in July after two years and will meet Tuki (of Crosswindz).

All this blogging and commenting has been a waste of time, if you ask me. I think the way you write is a good policy. Quality posts after relatively long intervals. Enjoyed your post on Vidyasagar. Those were our well-wishers.

Holden Caulfield said...


You missed it then ... the hatred was elsewhere.

After her most hateful comments on Bharat, Hindus, jai gauri maa (at this point she is in the 'flow'), and lumping me with the RSS she ends this post with 'sare jahan se achcha xxxx humara humara' ... obliquely trying to point out that instead of Jana Gana Mana, our national anthem should be 'Sare Jahan sa Achchha'.

You see, this kind of negative spontaneity requires years of training.

I am not much bothered with these people. I knew less about Indian-Americans, now I know something at least.

In my country people are not getting food to eat. I will spend less time arguing/blogging/commenting. It is almost vulgar, when the time is for some action.

Anonymous said...

I've been reading SP since the beginning of this year. Mosts of the posts are intelligent and I learnt a lot about desis view things and mostly the comments have been sensibly moderated.

This time however, one WTF moment after another followed as I read the comments following your posts. That OSN asshole spewed hate and BS with gay abandon and people there just gobbled it up. I can think of no reason why most of his posts were not moderated or he be warned unless of course there's some personal element into it. Does empathy for fellow victims of discrimination so blind their senses? You know, usually when this sort of thing happens, there are a few voices of reason but this time there were none. And that's just sad coz I really liked that blog. Hoping some of the sensible ones comment too.

I don't usually (actually never) comment at the blogs I read. This one is to show support for all your intelligent comments at SP. Its great that you work for AID but don't stop blogging please, have just started reading your blogs.


Dipanjan said...

Actions are needed, true. But do not under-estimate the power of your words.

When you write, your thoughts and analysis get clarity. That reduces the chances of bad actions. Remember you can always make things worse.

You never know who is reading what you write and how their lives are being changed by your words and what actions they take.

You may not be capable of great actions, but might be capable of writing the greatest words and that's ok. Niradbabu has written an excellent Bengali essay on the importance of staying true to one's core self, abilities - swadharmochyuto hoyo na.

Your best words might outlast your best actions. Tumi ki mrityur cheye baro? Aami mrityur cheye baro. Ei sesh katha bale, jaabo aami chole. Rabindranath ki bishwabharati/shantiniketan/bangobhango andoloner katha bhabchhilen, na gaan aar kabitar katha?

Holden Caulfield said...

you are right. writing brings clarity to thought.

Nirad Chaudhuri is one of my favorites. He had an amazingly clear mind. Rabindranath ekdom mul-e aghat kore to ... se ek onno byapar.

Holden Caulfield said...

ASh, thanks for your comments. OSN wanted to 'educate' me, you see. ABCDs have the brown man's burden. Kipling's chela, i presume. Hilarious stuff.

i am quite a bad blogger, although i might improve. Everything is in the hands of these people. I pray nightly . :)

Rahul said...

i think the overall problem is that every time someone criticizes something about india, a lot of those born or currently living in india get VERY DEFENSIVE and say things like, "get over it," etc. which is pretty offensive. it's hard to have a conversation with people like you. i think all that chinese girl said was that she was treated badly in india, and no one believed her or they told her to get over it.

in fact, you, naive realist, still don't even think she is chinese! who are you to make such claims? you seem very angry and lonely.

if you're so "indifferent" and if you don't care about sepia mutiny, why are you wasting your time and writing this post anyway? seems like you're furious.

anyway, i think it's sour grapes - you are jealous and bitter and now you pretend as if you don't care.

i think the problem arose because you started saying that naina and the other blogger were the same person, that they were out to get you, etc. i think that kind of conspiracy thinking is a little self-centered and people have no time for it. i mean, really, who are you?

oh and runa, every blog has a bias. sepia mutiny is a south asian-american centered blog. if you want a blog that focuses more on DBDs, then why not start one? in fact, there are already some good ones out there.

you're all kind of weak and boring.

Camille said...

i agree with rahul - sour grapes. you really did instigate things first. i think you have a problem with women.

Holden Caulfield said...


i need evidence. i do not think you are the same camille whose posts i saw on sepiamutiny.

i have no problem with women at all. do not try to divert attention. thanks.

Holden Caulfield said...

in fact, you, naive realist, still don't even think she is chinese! who are you to make such claims?

i will never believe she is chinese-indian. thanks. i have never seen her post on sepiamutiny - but she labels me as a hindu fundamentalist, and has called me countless names - i think she is frustrated and lonely and needed some attention from people. i also think she needs some education.

you seem very angry and lonely.

No sir, on the contrary. I have plenty of life-long friends who do not give off pretentious smiles. i am not angry at all. that's a ploy i know - first you try to depict the 'other' as emotional - which then, by definition, robs him of any reason. Sorry, it is common tactic. doesn't work with me, at least.

you're all kind of weak and boring.

you all are a bunch of arrogant people, for no reason at all. i do not need to be arrogant to show my strength.

you are jealous and bitter

of what? its funny. i feel sorry for you all.

Holden Caulfield said...

anyway, i think it's sour grapes - you are jealous and bitter

I forgot to add this to my response:

i am not jealous of you people. nor am i jealous of those whose hard work has made this country your choice. on the contrary. i am amazed at the sincerity, dedication and enterprise of the people of this country.

but people like you, and most ABCDs, have given the concept of self-interest a new meaning.

Rahul said...

The problem stems from your inferiority complex. Perhaps you are lacking in education, I'm not sure. BUt you seem to have a chip on your shoulder when it comes to ABCDs, esp. the second generation which has had a lot of opportunities to become educated and rich. And when they have an opinion about India, you guys act liek the "masters at the gate." I mean, look at you on the arranged marraige post - saying ignorant stuff like "an arranged marriage is not a forced marriage." And how would you know about every single instance of this?

You seem to exhibit traits of a sloppy thinker. I would suggest taking some basic classes in logic, analysis, composition, etc. they will prevent you from becoming overly emotional when it comes to arguments that you consistently lose.

I mean, you never had a problem with Sepia Mutiny before your childish behavior was called out - now suddenly they are arrogant, a "waste of time," etc.? In fact, you keep writing commetns on your own post!

You are the reason India is lagging.

Holden Caulfield said...

The problem stems from your inferiority complex.

By no means, and in no way. I think you live in a fool's paradise, fed by positive reinforcement.

mean, look at you on the arranged marraige post - saying ignorant stuff like "an arranged marriage is not a forced marriage." And how would you know about every single instance of this?

Just because you have added the word 'ignorant' before 'stuff' does not mean i have to get into defense mode. that rhetorical strategy apart, i would suggest you read the whole discussion here, here, here and here.
The detailed discussion is surely not your selected eight words drawn out of context. Needless to reiterate, I have never said I know about every single instance of this.

arguments that you consistently lose.

arguments are not about winning. arguments are discussions. I think you are brought up in an arrogant society, and you use such false binaries (win/lose) as metaphors.

I mean, you never had a problem with Sepia Mutiny before your childish behavior was called out - now suddenly they are arrogant, a "waste of time," etc.?

It takes time to understand the underlying tone and the confused agenda of a group of people. I have taken my time. It is my gain.

In fact, you keep writing commetns on your own post!

I am writing comments so that people like you do not get away with rubbish comments. What do you expect? You will say anything you want, and that will not go uncontested? What do you want?

You are the reason India is lagging.

Finally, some sensible comment. I think it makes complete sense to take personal responsibility (while being aware of the history).

Holden Caulfield said...

they will prevent you from becoming overly emotional

Again, the same tactic? Try something new please.

Rajdeep said...


I have read many of ur comments on sepia. it seems u have spent a lot of time thinking about these issues. i am not sure if u know this, but sepia is analogous to the pseudo-secularists and minority-appeasers in India. you can extrapolate from there.


Holden Caulfield said...


thanks for visiting. i think that was quite stark. i think chasing secularism is fine. on this, i am with the indomitable gayatri spivak when she says - secularism is an impoverished abstraction that we must protect ...

the problem is often created by those who have nothing to lose: consuming cosmopolitans, atheists, pseudo-secularists, and politicians who gain from vote-banks. for the atheist, nothing matters. so what will that person be tolerant of? But a religious person who believes in something needs to be tolerant of other religions. As a proud Hindu, I can say that Hinduism acknowledges all religions as true. But these evangelists will continue proselytizing, and jihadis will behave like idiots. Have you seen the alarmingly declining population of Hindus in Bangladesh? And the 'church-planting' 'missionary-sponsoring' agenda of Christians? I did not see any posts on these issues by the sepia team. i think that OSN is a non-hindu and clearly an insider. Chinese-indian! what a story!

The problem is the dangerous combination of money and ignorance. after eating a lot of food, the voice becomes louder, however absurd, and out of tune that might sound. and because they look well-fed and confident, some of my countrymen want to be like them. I have made a few comments about ABCDs, but i think, fortunately, not everyone is like these people.

These westernized idiots conflate Sanskrit with Hindooism. It's like labeling someone a protestant if she talks in english. I could go on. Time to get some work done.

Rajdeep said...


all generalizations are false. i think that was a sharp observation - the distinction between Sanskrit and Hinduism.


Holden Caulfield said...

thanks, Rajdeep. I think these people do not know that in almost all regional languages India is called Bharat. Probably I got carried away by the sudden outburst of this girl.