WAH WAH PEDAL AND BONDED LABOR
In the sixties the “FUNK BROTHERS” wrote most of the lyrics and the music for the MOTOWN SOUND. They were also the inventors of the “WA WA PEDAL”. This electronic foot pedal was attached to the lead guitar and when depressed gave the guitar a very distinct and melodious sound.
If you wish to hear the WA WA Pedal go to Eddie D’silva’s extensive data base for music downloads dated 21 December 2011 and follow the links to The Temptations song called “Cloud Nine”. You will then get the communist plot of this Kahani.
In the Seventies, Mean Sing had a full fledged orchestra and he was an excellent Conductor. He had all the musicians on a taut string. Being ambidextrous he played the Tabla with his left hand/wielded a “CAT OH NINE TAILS” (BULL WHIP) with the right hand. He called this whip his “WAH WAH” PEDAL.
Every time he cracked it, all members of his orchestra put their right palm behind the right ear and cupped it/they lifted up their left hand at a 45 degree angle and sang in unison “WAH WAH MEAN SING JEE”. I am sure many readers will remember the orchestra members from memory.
It came to pass that Heart Bag Sing and Mean Sing elected to grab some glory for the JAISALMER war heroes. They hatched a plot where a monument would be built on the airfield premises and the unveiling ceremony would be by the Honorable Defence Minister Shri Jagjivan Ram. A date was finalized for the same and a slew of VVIP’S and PRESS would be flown in for the ceremony.
Mean Sing went in high gear and mobilized forces on a War Footing. As usual all the cost for this Magnum Opus was not authorized as per the Air Force Rules and Regulations. The little known secret of “ADJUST” was utilized and on paper a few blast pens were refurbished and a portion of the taxi track was redone. The Garrison Engineer was happy.vThe making of the MONUMENT commenced immediately.
A host of officers were positioned in Jaisalmer and a tent city went up to accommodate all and sundry. Bobcat was the Guard Of Honor Commander and his tent was equipped with a telephone. Every day Mean Sing flew in at 0700 Hours and after checking the Guard Of Honor troop, gave his suggestions and checked out the progress on the rest of the Bandobast. He flew back by 1100 Hours.
Time was heavy on the hands of the officers. The first tent in line was the best equipped one and it had all amenities including one desert cooler and a humongous fridge. The occupants of this tent were the SMO, S LOGISTICS O and the MTO. They would commence celebrating every day at exactly 1200 Hours and by 1700 Hours all three would be comatose.
Three nights before the unveiling ceremony the phone rang in Bobcat’s tent at 0100 Hours. t was the Military Provost Marshal of the local division. The Captain tells Bobcat that he found three men passed out in an Air Force jeep in the Out Of Bounds Area of Jaisalmer town. He took command of the Jeep and put the three men as guests in his Quarter Guard. They were currently still passed out. Bobcat tells the Captain to hold fire and checks the VIP tent and sure enough all three officers are missing and so is the Jeep. e tells the Captain that they are officers and he will vouch for their transfer. Lot of wheeling and dealing is done and the three officers and the jeep is brought back to the Air Base.
The bush telegraph is busy and one of the informants calls Mean Sing with the gory details. Mean Sing flies in at day break and asks Bobcat to give him a hand written report addressed to him in a single copy. He reads it and tells Bobcat that it is now an Official Secret.
The progress on the Monument is completed in time. On the great day all dignitaries fly in to Jaisalmer and the dispersal looks like an International Airport with various types of aircraft. The place is crawling with Press Walahs.
The Guard of Honor goes off like clock work and soon the Honorable Minister unveils the Monument. Jaws drop and amazement is written on all faces. It was obvious that communication was lost from Mean Sing to the Garrison Engineer and the architect. The Monument looks a cross between the Washington Monument and the Qutib Minar and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
All return to Jodhpur and life goes on. Soon Mean Sing is posted to Delhi and the three jail birds– Surprise! Surprise! – are also posted to Delhi. From then on till Mean Sing retired the three jail birds were at his beck and call at all times – ‘adjusting’ for their one night of alcohol sodden stupour.
Who said life is fair?
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