No omelet for you. A letter to the JNCASR student committee.

JNCASR has a utility store, which sells toiletries and sundry eatables. Apparently, you can’t get omelet there. Because people who are vegetarian have complained/ might complain about it. Or something. Anubhab Roy wrote to the student committee asking if something couldn’t be done about this. His arguments fell on deaf ears. Obviously, then, I had to say something. Here’s what I wrote to the student committee:

Hello,

Anubhab Roy sent me a copy of his missive asking why the utility centre cannot serve omelets. He made the point that an institution cannot go around banning things some section of its residents don’t like. I am told his plaint is going to go unheard.

I disagree with Anubhab Roy. And I’m glad the administration at JNCASR has taken the pragmatic path of respecting people’s rights to stick to their principles in the face of overwhelming common sense.

I am a Pastafarian, and the central tenet of my faith is that flour should only be used to make noodly shapes. Shaping flour in any other way is unclean, disrespectful, and sacrilegious. I have had to bear with chappatis and bread at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, in the mess and indeed in the utility store all my life.

It isn’t just that they want to serve chappatis and bread; they also insist on using the same utensils for chappatis as for noodles. They also insist on displaying the toaster in full view of the food-queue.

Now that I have seen the pragmatism of the student committee and the rest of the administration at JNC, however, I can finally hope that these wrongs will be righted.

I would, left to myself, do away with chappatis altogether, but I get that I live in a community. I just want my faith to not be compromised. I appeal to you to respect my right to my faith – the faith of hundreds of thousands of people across the world.

I hope, therefore, that you will ensure that the utensils used for chappatis are not used for noodles, and that the toaster is moved to behind the washing machines.

I thank you and hope that you will kindly oblige.

Yours,
Ravichandran S

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10 thoughts on “No omelet for you. A letter to the JNCASR student committee.”

  1. A missive is a kind of letter – an official letter of request, in fact. I plead guilty to convoluted writing in general, though; but not because I use nice words.

  2. “His arguments fell on deaf ears. Obviously, then, I had to say something.”

    Are you India’s next ‘sole protector’ of minority rights? 🙂

  3. Oh, I just don’t like deaf people.

    It’s a ‘majority right’ I’m trying to defend in this case, in fact. By banning non-vegetarian food from the canteen, we’re deferring to a small minority who’ve have some tiff with chickens and can’t stand them, even when they’re dead.

  4. This is non-stupidism. Happens to also be the cause of the majority in this case.

    Preachy in general? No question. In this case, I’m only poking fun at vegetarians-by-religion.

  5. How on Earth did you get that from what I’ve said?!

    In this case, the large number of people who have no problem with eggs have been asked to go without them because some section cannot stand eggs. I obviously think this is silly.

    How does this say anything about my general position on whether majority should prevail or even that I have a position on something like that?

  6. The real issue is, whose rights and what rights exactly are being
    impinged upon by a group of people eating omelets in a
    public place – the key words being “public place.” The
    whole majority vs minority discussion is wholly disingenuous.

    I could just as well say that I’m offended by the smell of
    cabbage and ask the canteen stop serving it so that I can
    eat there – and have a group of cabbage haters sign a
    petition to back me. Is this request any less rational than
    saying that my specific superstition prevents me from being
    within a 10 foot radius of someone eating an omelet so
    no one else can?

    Egg lovers have just as much right to eat their omelets as
    cabbage lovers have to eat their stinky cabbages.

  7. …or whether I should be allowed to demand that chappatis and bread not be served in the ‘public place’ that is the mess hall because it ‘offends’ my religion. They’re defiling the body of my saviour!

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