Colonize This

by Anil Antony | 2/22/02 6:00am

I'll admit it. I've become something of an Olympics addict over the past week or so. Last night, after finding myself hypnotized by Michelle Kwan and giggling childishly at Irena Slutskaya (she's got a funny name), I began to wonder, "Hey, why are there no great Indian Winter Olympians? Moreover, where's the Indian Winter Olympics team?"

India, for having a population of over a billion, has sent pitifully few athletes (read: one, a luger) to the Winter Olympics. They did win a bronze medal at the Summer Olympics for women's weight lifting, but I'm not sure that's information Indian males want getting out. We're already hypo-masculine, as I learned in postcolonial literature. Perhaps it's said class, or just my natural paranoid self, but I'm beginning to see the world in binaries. Good versus bad, colonizer versus colonized and so forth. At any rate, this is enough to explain, if not excuse, my next few thoughts.

"I know why there's no Indian Winter Olympic team!" I exclaimed, ignoring the possibility that it's due to the climate. "It's the Brits. So typical," I sniffed indignantly.

I suppose the answer could just be that India doesn't have the necessary infrastructure to support their one Summer Olympian as well as curling and bobsled teams, or that when trying to feed a nation of starving people playing games seems a tad less important, but certainly something more devious could be afoot. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if I found the following headline in a newspaper, "December 17, 1997. A most vile and despicable act of neocolonialism was perpetrated by the Great Britain Olympic team. Under cover of night, British forces invaded the Indian Winter Olympics training hut, annexed the Indian bobsled and made off with a most sacred cow, which they later ate."

Just thinking about this was enough to get me riled. I mean, isn't it enough that those limeys have repressed my people for hundreds of years? They need to steal our Olympics to be happy? (And when I say "my" and "our" I'm pretending for a second that I'm remotely Indian.) First Dyer and Mountbatten, now this. Shame on them, indeed.

Of course, I'm never going to see such an article, because I'm pretty sure nothing so nefarious could ever occur. The British, for all their bad teeth, effeminate ways and dirty sounding dishes (like bangers and mash) have seemingly left India alone for the last 50-odd years. And we do have a lot to thank them for -- cricket, education, syphilis, Pakistan and Bangladesh, for starters. (Yeah, I know that's a cheap shot. The Bangladeshis are fighting hard to stay above water, literally.)

I'm sorry I've gotten so riled up over nothing. It's just that colonialism always gets my goat. Just like incest and libertarianism, it's one of those things that is good in theory but never in practice. I'm just kidding (I would never support libertarianism). Then again, who am I to talk? Indians have done some colonizing of their own, as well. And no, I'm not talking about the great Indus River civilization, nor the well, I don't know, but I'm not referring to whatever you're thinking.

Here at Dartmouth College, our colonies are full-fledged and thriving. We have a tight grasp on the economics and biology majors and are considered by many to be major players in engineering, as well. Indian immigrant parents seem to be missing the fine print in their immigration contracts. Section 7.2.small print.3.1 clearly states, and I quote, "Any sons procreated shall play tennis until their college years, while daughters rendered shall play piano. Upon reaching college, said offspring may either study economics, engineering or be pre-med." You see, it's not that we want to dominate these areas; it's just our contractual obligation. Our "brown man's burden," if you will.

And so scores of Indian parents are forced to send their children off to become rich and successful. However, I think the time has come that we once again expand. Now that my race has a seeming monopoly on Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and medical schools everywhere, it's time to broaden our colonial reach. Here at Dartmouth, I propose starting with the Environmental Studies department, partly because I'm already there, but mostly because no one else seems to want it. You think a few crunchy whites are going to put up much resistance? Sure, they'll protest in front of Collis, but big deal. Not even the British Empire could impede our march to independence.

Why stop there? By the time my stay here is complete, I'd like to see Indians in the process of taking over the ART and LIT distributives, as well as the TAS, SOC and QDS that we already have! I will not rest until there is an Indian in every classroom and a Hindu in every dining hall, and not just in the Pavilion with their Sakahara cuisine. Manifest destiny beckons, and we must obey. This is the real "diversity" we need.

Anglos, beware. You might think I'm nuts, but I'm warning you that if you get in my way I might just colonize your posterior with my boot.