Letter from a concerned reader Columns

Who likes Spartacus?

Madam, Sir,

Did you see the sad news? Kirk Douglas has left this world. Saddest of all sad news. Actor means Kirk Douglas. These days some idiot will grow one beard and wearing cooling glass means actor. But real actor means Kirk Douglas.

When I saw the news, I put one phone call to Dr. Shankaramenon. I said, “Doctor, doctor, I think Kirk Douglas has died.” He said, “Oho Mathrubootham, how many times I have to say just because I am doctor I am not god, ok no problem, what is the flat number? I will come and try something. Maybe I can try electric shock.”

I said, “Kamanatti rascal, porambokku karumam sori nayi paradesi muttaaal manda shiromani madaya, I am talking about great actor Kirk Douglas. You will go to Hollywood and give electric shock? Rascal, Hollywood police will shoot you and then put in electric chair. You enjoy the shock.”

Madam/ Sir, when you make friends during youth whether any warning will be there that they will turn into foolish people in retirement. Please ask science department reporter to find any solution.

Then I called Mohammed Usman in his shop. “Usman, Usman,” I said, “Kirk Douglas has expired.” He said, “Mathrubootham, is it some shampoo item? I will ask boy to replace. But shampoo and all you can use after expiry also. I am using one after-shave lotion since 1997.”

I said then, “Usman do one thing please, bring shaving lotion called Anthony Hopkins and perfume with name Audrey Hepburn.” He said, “Oho Mathrubootham! Upper-class lifestyle these days. Please send names on WhatsApp so that boy can buy properly.” “No problem, I will send,” I said. Then I recorded all the abuses in Tamil and Malayalam in one voice message and sent it to Usman. Enjoy Usman, foolish man.

Finally, I went to Mrs. Mathrubootham. I said, “Kamalam, the great Kirk Douglas has departed this world.” She came into room and said, “Yes, I know, old man. Whole day I am feeling sad. What a hero he was.” I said, “Too much hero. Scenes of Spartacus are still flashing in my mind after 60 years.” She asked, “What is your favourite film of Kirk Douglas?” I said, “Easy question, it is Spartacus.” She said, “Okay, what is your favourite film after Spartacus?”

I said, “I don’t know, I have to think. Which films you have enjoyed Kamalam?”

She said, “Spartacus was classic. But Lonely are the Brave is even better. And have you seen Lust for Life? Let us thank the god for all these experiences. It is a blessing only.” I said, “Yes, yes 100%.”

Then she said, “But old man, you tell me two or three good Kirk Douglas films you are liking, we can get DVD and watch together.” I said, “Kamalam, first of all, there is Spartacus, it is a classic.” Then she said, “Old man, how many times you will say Spartacus Spartacus. Everyone has seen Spartacus, whether you have seen any other film? Or you are fraud fan just putting big talks?”

Madam/ Sir, I immediately went into bedroom and closed the door and I said in loud voice, “Kamalam, how dare you say such things?” Then I went on Internet to urgently read Wikipedia entry of Kirk Douglas.

If he has only one super-hit film means it is my problem? Nonsense. Kirk Douglas and all too much hype.

Yours in exasperation,

J. Mathrubootham

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Printable version | Jun 21, 2021 12:13:01 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/columns/who-likes-spartacus/article30763142.ece

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