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Dec
13

celebrating my new relationship with Cyberwit

After self-publishing nine critically-ignored collections of short stories, my tenth is being published by someone else. It’s all very exciting not having to pay any money to release your own writing on the world.

To celebrate I decided to listen to the Sangeet with Ramaprasad show on WPRB in Princeton yesterday morning.

Why is that?

Because the publisher of my new book Cyberwit is located in India. Not only is it the very least I can do to show my support for their very dubious decision to spend their hard-earned rupees on my work, but in the unlikely event my book shoots up the Best Seller list in India I’d like to be somewhat-familiar the music that everyone over there seems to enjoy.

It was an eye-opening two hours. A good many of the singers employ a Hindustani singing style that incorporates a lot of pitch variations, or ‘Taan’. It’s like if a normal singer was forced to perform in a bouncy castle occupied by a number of obese children after a few energy drinks.

The last song of the show was the one that made the biggest impact. Not because of the quality of the performance, but by the name of the performer; Pannalal Ghosh.

For reasons that weren’t obvious to me at the time, the name sounded like a sex act. As in the phrase “I gave her the ol’ Pannalal Ghosh.”

I made this observation to the one who is always with me but wasn’t there at the time. “I wonder why that name sounds like a sex act to me. This bears further investigation” I said aloud to nobody.

Perhaps it’s because Pannalal sounds like a position you’d read about in the Kamasutra. “Assume the Pannalal.” I can’t say why, but when I picture the Pannalal I don’t imagine the two parties facing each other.

And Ghosh?

Well, that sounds very much like how the sex act ends. It ends in a big, wet ghosh. Both participants end up ghoshing all over the place. Perhaps that’s why I didn’t imagine the couple facing each other during the Pannalal stage. They know what’s coming and want to avoid getting any ghosh in their eye.

It’s at this point that I should really reconsider posting this ‘tribute’ to my new publisher. There is a very slight chance that they might actually read this take offense. They might even reconsider their affiliation with such an uncouth American.

Imagine the irony if they get so upset that they end up giving me the ol’ Pannalal Ghosh after I went to the time and energy to try and get a better appreciation of their culture. Literally inserting a little karma in the Kamasutra.

That might be the worst sentence I’ve ever written.

So whatever happens, something good came out of it.

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