Friday, March 23, 2007

i'm not THAT stupid

At an SEZ protest yesterday a fat, light-skinned bloke in white kurta pajamas, about 5 foot 8 inches tall and wearing two gold rings, tried to pass himself off in an interview as a landless laborer. "We make 100 rupees per day, plus we're allowed to take vegetables from the fields and we get a portion of the grain at harvest time," he told me, throwing in a few English phrases of his owne, via an interpreter. I'm pretty sure that the substance of what he told me was true, but how the heck did he think he was going to fool me into believing he was a landless agricultural laborer? I think I'd have been skeptical even on my first day in India! And having seen a few landless folks--usually, because of poor nutrition, less than 5 foot tall and so slight that they seem part of some lost tribe of pygmies--there was just no way. I almost busted out laughing. I'd have sooner believe that the guy had just swallowed a landless laborer.

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