This one is about Alia Bhatt. Had flaring of nostrils been an Olympic event, Alia would have won a couple of gold medals to make our nation proud (is flaring of nostrils a doubles event?).
This post does not involve flaring of nostrils, or any activity regarding them; for that matter, it does not involve any part of her nose that had turned out to be the a salient feature of Highway.
I was a bit late to catch up with the Koffee With Karan episode on social network. What had she been thinking? Varun Dhawan ended up responding with Manmohan Singh, which was not unexpected: champion quizzers have lost nerves and have come up with answers very close to the correct one.
Alia, as we know, had taken things to a different plane.
Before she knew, internet was flooded with Alia Bhatt jokes (some of them were outstanding, and I loved them more than Alok Nath, Nirupa Roy, or Yami Gautam jokes — though not as much as Neil Nitin Mukesh jokes). #AliaBhattJokes started trending on Twitter.
All India Bakchod had come up with a video to “troll” Alia a year and a half back after the path-breaking number Ishqwala love. Just like almost any AIB video, it is approaching the million-views mark. Alia herself had appeared in the video, but it was merely a dig at the ridiculous lyrics of a horrible song.
Then AIB did it in collaboration with Alia. They trolled her again, but with a difference. This time they decided to go big: they roped in Mahesh Bhatt, Karan Johar, Arjun Kapoor, and Parineeti Chopra (sigh), but most significantly — they got Alia as well. Again.
AIB did a wonderful job yet again, but I was blown off by Alia. She hails from the same country where a certain chief minister had issued an arrest order for a reasonably harmless (ill-made) cartoon; and yet, she laughed, and most importantly, she laughed at herself.
Sense of humour is an intriguing concept. People close to me are perhaps aware of the fact that I keep on brooding that humour is not offered as a major.
The other aspect that I am ashamed of admitting is the fact that sense of humour has certainly not been strongest point of Indians. We have tried to be funny, but few would rank among the world’s finest humorists.
There is a reason for this: we do not know how to laugh at or make fun of ourselves. Our bloated egos do not allow us to do the same. We end up making fun of others, taking jibes at them in public, and flooding Twitter with 140-character one-liners.
Alia Bhatt did none of the above. She made no smart-aleck comments on the internet; she did not retaliate on social media (pardon my limited knowledge if she has).
Instead, she responded in the best possible way: with a bit of help from others (which includes Parineeti, the finest of the young lot) she made us laugh at herself; and feel guilty; and feel like slapping ourselves.
We had made fun of her. She combated with humour, and won the battle, because however hard you try to defeat and strangle it, humour always comes out victorious in the end.
Kudos, Alia. If only we had mastered the art of laughing at ourselves as well. If only I could do at 37 what you could at 21. Stay well, girl, and whatever you do in life, do not give up the ability to laugh at yourself.