Get Lit, Mr Prime Minister


Get Lit, Mr Prime Minister

Illustration: Akshita Monga

Dear Modiji,

I’d like to start off by saying that contrary to what Twitter thinks, I think you’re certifiably cool. I’m not saying nice things to avoid being called anti-national (although, if I’m not called anti-national at least once, it’s a day ill-spent for me, tbh.) I genuinely believe that you’ve captured the essence of our millennial YOLO SWAG generation ever since you’ve come to power. (I need not, of course, expand on tbh, YOLO, or SWAG. That would be disrespectful.)

Everything from your statue at Tussauds to wearing your name on your sleeve, speaks of the effortless grasp you have on the concept of being cool. Your friendship with Obama is also proper #goals, Modiji. I’m sure you make Biden so jealous that every time you book a flight, he worries that you’re about to come and lay some serious Brodi moves on his fam.

And your selfie game, Mr PM! I don’t know why Kim K has a book on her selfies, because it should be you. Your selfies have empowered all middle-aged Indian men – our fathers and uncles – to take selfies with casual abandon. You mix the offhanded narcissism of an Instagram model with the filter finesse of a profesh Facebook photography page. It is what they call lit, Modiji. I’m sure you also call it lit these days.

But like all great, mythological 56-inch chested heroes, you have an Achilles heel too. There’s no easy way to say this, but we need to talk about your references. Now, as far as references go, the idea is to drop it like it’s hot. At the Global Citizen Fest in NY, when Hugh Jackmanji was standing right behind you, eyes aglow with Wolverine-esque anticipation, you dropped a Star Wars reference. You couldn’t see it because your back was to him, but he looked like you’d light-sabered his soul. It’s like calling a really hot person from Tinder on a date and introducing them to your fiancé of seven years.

Why do you keep doing this to white people? They gravitate to us, all pasty and sweaty, and you remind them of other people in their fields who are twice as famous and half as desperate.

I’m sorry if this seems seditious, but that was uncool. You hurt Jackmanji’s feelings. I assumed it was a one-time thing, so I went back to my sincere reverence of you and your ways, but then Coldplay came to India and… how do I put this gently… you did the thang. Again.

Now I understand that you wanted to cue in a demonetisation joke to make light of the very dark sitch, but there was no need to throw Bob Dylan in the mix, sir. Coldplay has basically been collecting all of its thunder to showcase at the MMRDA to everyone who has enough money to pose as a fan. And then you throw in Dylan’s quote to an audience like that. How are they to ever want to listen to “Fix You,” after being reminded of the lyrical genius of  “The Times, They are A-Changin’”?

And what about poor Chris? To be shaded like that by the leader of the country he has been dedicatedly fetishising all year? Why do you keep doing this to white people? They gravitate to us, all pasty and sweaty, and you remind them of other people in their fields who are twice as famous and half as desperate. Will you do this to Trumpji also? Promise to hang out with him and then give a shout-out to the Brobama administration while Mr Trump lurks behind you, nonplussed. How many fragile white male egos must be smashed to bits by your wanton references, Modiji? Where does the madness end?

It is not my place to tell you how to manage your socio-political relations with other leaders of the world. Mostly, because I already did that, but also because it’s not really my jam. My jam is to tell you that your references are off the point. Say if you were not our revered prime minister, but a regular uncle from my middle-class family and we were watching Game of Thrones together (edited to our primetime sanskar standards, of course), would you look at Khaleesi and that Daario person and scream, “They were on a break!!”? What concerns me is that you probably would, and we would probably laugh, then be really confused about your stance on the whole Ross-Rachel thing. But our key takeaway from your ebullient outburst would be that you don’t know your shows, Mr PM.

It’s okay for us to have that impression, we’re all fam. But don’t give such an opportunity to all the evil gora presstitutes out there. Please, for the sake of pop culture, before you make a reference, Google it.

Sincere regards and charan sparsh,
Concerned Mitron