The intelligentsia (as defined by Wikipedia) is a social class of people engaged in complex mental and creative labor directed to the development and dissemination of culture, encompassing intellectuals and social groups close to them. You can very well attribute this term to the Bengali society who fits this definition quite well. But what does a timid and herbivorous (although Bengalis think goats to be omnivorous – chhagole ki na khay) mammal like goat got to do with this elite group of people? The answer to this is well known to all of us – Bengalis love goat meat. Although in other parts of the World, goat milk and milk products (cheese) are also extremely popular, but we the Bengalis don’t care much about the milk. It is the meat that is most important to us – the ultimate food in any Bengali plate. Historically, goat meat is the only kind of meat that Bengalis (especially the Hindu Bengalis) ate. Goats were the most popular offerings to Goddess Kali and Durga – and the meat then cooked in a recipe void of any garlic or onions and hence termed as “vegetarian meat”.
Couple of years ago, I wrote an article on how to save gasoline by changing some of our driving habits. I have republished the article again with the faint hope that it may help us again. I say “faint hope” because whatever we could have saved has been wiped out by this record price increase. These days I am taking a more philosophical approach towards this disaster, and this resulted in a new play “Baad Protibaad”. Well, don’t be scared, since “Baad Protibaad” is not a philosophical play at all (unless you really try hard to dig out the trace amounts from deep within the characters). It is just a humorous take on the effects of the gas price increase on us, the Bengalees.
The word “Gas” has some special connotation to us the Bengalees. But now, it almost means our life blood. And when this important part of our existence in this country is threatened, how do we react?
“Baad Protibaad” is a short play, produced in an audio play format. The play will be broadcast on EBC Radio, 1170 AM on Sunday, June 22nd, in the Bengali program air slot – “Probaha” hosted by Abhijit Sanyal at 10am in the morning. The play is produced by ECTA Inc. Following are the detailed credits:
A Hilarious Play in Bengali by Sudipta Bhawmik
Produced by ECTA Inc.
Directed by Indranil Mukherjee
Subhodev Das as Ashok
Aparajita Das as Kakoli
Indranil Mukherjee as Soumen
Anisha Das as Jhimli
Recorded and mixed at the Bharatiya Kala Kendra, NJ, Studio by Partha Sarathi Mukherjee
Edited by Partha Sarathi Mukherjee and Indranil Mukherjee
Music and effects by Partha Sarathi Mukherjee.
And please remember to come to ECTA’s mini theater festival on June 28th and 29th at the Edison Valley Playhouse, in Edison, NJ. If you like the above play, I am sure you’ll love the plays at the festival.