This is the Christmas email I sent out to friends, thought I might as well post it here in its entirety, so that I can make 2010 my bloggingest year yet :)
tl;dr just a long winded way of wishing you a merry xmas.
So I was wondering, what if Jesus were born in India? What would we get if we replaced Bethlehem with the idiosyncrasies of modern day India? Well, legend goes that Joseph and Mary had to travel to Bethlehem to pay a special tax. We're right on target then! I admit my version of the nativity story is bits and pieces I remember from school, polished off with a six-year-old friendly version that I read on the interwebs after the idea for this post struck me, but bear with me here. So, Joseph and Mary travel to India where Mary is to deliver the Son of God. Of course, health insurance was a problem, and India being the prime destination for cheap but world class healthcare, they decided to take the medical tourism route. Thanks to an unfortunate booking on Air-India, their travel dates were anyone's guess. A little known story goes that the angel who came to Mary to tell her she would bear the Son of God had to make a coupla trips back to confirm their booking with the local Air India offices. As a result, Joseph and Mary arrived in India the night before her due date. The journey left Mary wishing for a trip on donkeyback, like in the good old days, since the aircraft was even less comfortable than that.
Upon arrival, they were greeted with burning tyres and buses. I guess it was apt that the day before the Lord's birth was a bandh in India. This was of course, strategically timed by the political parties who called for the bandh, so that two productive days would be lost. The birth of the Lord would be a holiday in any case. As a result of the bandh, they were left stranded. Most of the hotels weren't open, and Apollo Hospital was kinda far from the airport. Determined that the Son of God would not arrive into this world at the airports rather apt but unclean arrival terminal, they ventured out. The few open hotels immediately jacked up their rates tenfold seeing that Joseph and Mary were a) foreigners, b) desperate for a room. In the end they bribed the custodian of a Yatri Nivas run by the state tourism corporation and he gave them a semi-passable room for the night. Needless to say, there were bedbugs and mice galore. At this point, Mary is rather ironically telling Joseph that she has seen stables cleaner than this back in Bethlehem. A while later, the Lord is born, and Joseph, having had an overdose of the recently concluded FIFA world cup, names Him Jesus, ostensibly in tribute to Jesus Navas, the Spanish winger.
Now, some wise men arrived by the red-eye flight from the Promised Land. Being wise men, they knew fully well not to carry expensive gifts since they would have to bribe the customs officials to get them into the country, and it wasn't quite worth it. Instead, in their wisdom, they shopped duty-free. I'm not sure of the exact nature of the gifts they bought, considering duty-free didn't stock gold, frankincense or myrrh. The guy at the check-out counter didn't even know what the last two were. I'm guessing they bought at least one bag of Herschey's Kisses chocolate, judging by the purchases of all foreign-returns in my office. They were to follow a star that they knew would rise, but being wise men, they had factored the smog in our cities into their plans, and had brought along a GPS. They ran out of wisdom soon, though, when they discovered that their expensive Tom-Tom unit didn't have much coverage in India. They had more pressing worries though, they had to register themselves at the police commissioners office as foreigners before they could proceed to see Jesus.
In the end they did get there, only to figure out that they were a bit too late. Senior officials in the immigration department had already leaked to the media information regarding the presence and whereabouts of Joseph and Mary in India, and the wise men were beaten to the post by Barkha Dutt who was shouting at the Child, trying to get the first ever interview with the Son of God. Vijay Mallya was there too, since he was tipped off about the water-to-wine capabilities of the Kid, and the folks from Dr Batra's Homeopathics were there since they needed His miracle cures since Homeopathy was shite anyway. Lalit Modi was offering him an IPL team, and the producers of Big Boss wanted to do an Ed TV style reality series on his life that somehow also involved walking on water while carrying Rakhi Sawant. The Kid could do it without a CG budget.
yeah i think i should probably stop.
PS2, if i weren't agnostic, i would say that this has probably assured me of my ticket to hell.
PS3, Merry Xmas y'all. :)
PS4, yeah i know, i missed out on lotsa details, couldn't be bothered, etc.
love, take care, etc.