Sourit Bhattacharya


Don’t go near the yellow halogen lights if you buy liquor on black

Be it Irfan or Mandol’s, whosoever’s country liquor-shack it is, there are days when there is no sense of control in anyone. Say, a drunk policeman in civil dress utters a few “lih, lih” words of nonsense, and the whole lot of drunkards joins him in making weird and barbaric sounds. That guy sleeping peacefully against a pole –  now awake – starts abusing the man in front who was making some salty crisps for his pegs. Done, it will then turn into a ruckus. The best policy in these times is that of DS or Director Special. His attaché case has the initials of his name decoratively grafted on the side parts. DS. Black. A fat black toad. Wearing a cheap Terylene shirt. A locket with the photo of the Mahaprabhu dangling from the half opened shirt. Glimpses of share-market forms in the attaché case. A dotted pen with the name of a foreign liquor brand on it. A filthy comb thick with the fossilized dirt from many heads. A photo of an old woman. Calmpose tablets. A metro-rail ticket. And a purchased diary. Bought this year. That night was very sweaty. Noisy too. The policy of DS was just to gulp a pint of liquor in a whisker and leave the place. But that night he was caught by a man, wearing a cheap starched kurta, fair, slim, with dyed hair covering the neck, a long nose, but no teeth.

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