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Monday, July 18, 2005

how to hold hands

Hands are the most important part of our body, and like other important organs, come in a pair.

We lend a helping hand to one who needs it and, it is the hand that rocks the cradle. We raise hands to draw attention; we grip hands to show warmth and affection, we join hands and form human chains to project a cause. We acknowledge the wishes of others with folded hands and shake hands with a person to share a sense of goodwill (remember the long never ending hand shake between one of our ex Prime Ministers and the Chinese Premier)? We always admire the safe hands of the fielders (in cricket) and that of the goalkeeper (in football).

Unfortunately, when it comes to the celluloid and the TV, we find that our actors and actresses do not know how to use this gift of nature to attain perfection. Invariably, they do not have any idea of what to do with those limbs. They just hang while the lips mouth those famous lines like ‘kaan khool kar soon ley…’ (listen with your ears open…) or words to similar effect. We have heard of people being tongue-tied but here we find people hand-tied. Another group of people who do not know what to do with their hands are the politicos – when not thumping desks or hurling missiles at one another in the parliament or waving to the crowd or joining hands on stage to express the beginning of yet another grouping, they love to sit with their hands in their laps, or use them to support the chin.

In marriage, the hands of the bride and groom are joined together in holy matrimony by the priest in full view of hundreds of relatives, guests and well wishers and with the fire God as witness – no one wants to learn of the background story, and what sort of goodies changed hands before the bargain is struck! When a person retires from service, his friends give him a farewell by literally lifting him off his feet, tossing him in their hands and singing ‘he is a jolly good fellow’. And – when we perform the last journey, we may not see it but we know that there will be a whole lot of hands to support the bier and lift it to the shoulders.

The bandit Gabbar Singh cut off the hands of police Inspector Sanjeev Kumar, to teach him a lesson – all of us have Gabbar Singhs within us, we would have loved to give tit for tat to so many persons around us and teach them lessons, but our hands are tied. Our wishes die natural deaths.

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