10-16 October 2014 #727

Attain nirvana by doing nothing

As Dasains go, this year’s festive season had a somewhat somnolent quality. Many of us logged 18 hours of sleep a day, waking up only to gnaw at a deceased mountain goat, belching frequently in a loud and carefree manner in our sleep, chewing the cud by re-eating juicy morsels of ex-goat lodged between our molars, plopping suparis into the mouth, sucking on a juicy paan, turning over, and going back to sleep. I know what you’re muttering, you’re muttering: how is all this different from a non-Dasain day at the Ministry of Labour’s Department of Sloth and Lethargy? Um, I’ll have to get back to you on that.

In fact, one expert who has closely researched the circadian rhythms of an average adult male in this country points out that a Nepali drone’s sleeping patterns are essentially the same, Dasain or no Dasain. As citizens of a landlocked Himalayan republic that has never ever in its entire history been colonised by aliens from the Planet Voth, we have all had a nice long vacation and now, fully rested, we can once more plunge headfirst into the task of not writing the constitution as we prepare for the next festival on the calendar.

Sad to say, there are workaholics among us who will insist on going to work in the coming week to push paper. Woe on such spoilsports, they need counselling. It’s not that we are less lazy the rest of the year. But Dasain was the time that we really dropped all our inhibitions and let ourselves wallow in indolence. Even though we know how important it is to lie low and pretend to be comatose, we do sometimes lapse into exertion and toil. Vigilance, that is what is required. Vigilance against meeting deadlines set by the Deadline-Setting Committee of the Second Constipation Assembly.

We have always underestimated the role inaction plays in resolving crises. There is such a high chance that the decisions taken by a pro-active government will be huge mistakes that being indecisive actually prevents it from making blunders. Laziness also prevents violence. People who are too lethargic, it has been proven, just can’t muster the energy to fight. And as we all know from Newton’s Third Law of Thermodynamics, a body at rest will remain at rest unless someone pokes a pin under the aforementioned body’s hind quarters.

Deep-fried goat innards washed down with beer are an important ingredient to ensure inertness, which is why the gobblement left no stones overturned in order to guarantee that 45,000 mountain goats were imported from the Tibetan Plateau this year in addition to the 100,000 plain goats that are brought up from the Tarai. Because without adequate supplies of goat, Nepalis may actually end up doing something useful and important in the national interest, like passing a new constitution. No kidding.

You may well say, this is all very well and good, but what about the post-Dasain period? What if some wise-guy Chairman of the Dialogue Committee or the Monologue Task Force actually goes and strikes a consensus deal on contentious issues that has bedeviled constitution-drafting? What then? How do we foil that?

Not to worry, the semi-government National Institute for Lassitude and Stupour has moved swiftly to do nothing so that those who are on hunger strike can go faster unto death. From now onto the SHARK Summit, top leaders are going to be sent to the US for treatment of sore throats and stomach aches to prevent the spread of Ebola. And everytime the vice-president goes anywhere we will close down the airport and bring traffic to a standstill so that nothing untoward will inadvertently be accomplished in the capital.

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