Our office building’s ground-floor men’s room has a peculiar problem – it’s missing a tap!
Actually, the tap broke off for whatever reasons taps “break” off, and it was replaced by a rag pushed in by a stick to plug the resulting water-spout.
That… happened 5-years ago!
Instead of replacing the tap, we got accustomed to living without one – after all, there are other taps in the washroom, which too work at times!
The essence of the tap is that it, in a strange way, depicts what life is like for the average Indian.
We are very proud of something called “Jugaad“, which is basically a Hindi-word that denotes “ingenuity” or “innovation”, but not in their traditional sense.
Ingenuity and Innovation are Good Things
But I wouldn’t want to live in a world where “Jugaad” becomes a good thing.
That is because Jugaad is a word that signifies an incomplete, under-competent attempt at fixing a problem with a temporary solution only because the person doing it was either too lazy or just too unskilled to solve the problem properly!
If a plumber walked in the door and gave the rag-stick trick as your broken-tap’s solution, you would be annoyed!
The other thing that bugs me about Jugaad is the way the Jugaad-oo (as they are known) strut about like male birds in springtime.
There is a failure to realise that the job done wasn’t enough, or right for that matter, because even though the problem ceased to be visible, it didn’t really go away!
Boman Irani really Rubs me the Wrong Way
I have nothing against the man himself – he is a great actor – but its that advertisement he does for Ambipur that reeks of Jugaad!
Think about it – all Ambipur (and every other car or room perfume) does is cover a bad smell with its own good smell… that’s all!
It does not remove the bad smell… which means the problem doesn’t go away!
So why then do we not smell that bad odour again?
Simple – biology – the human nose gets accustomed to a smell and stops differentiating it as it would the first time it encountered that smell.
Which is why loads of people live across massive drains and garbage piles in India, because they cannot smell what infrequent visitors to those areas do.
What air fresheners like Ambipur do is they mask the bad smell with a good smell, and when its effect begins to wear off, your nose is gradually introduced to the bad smell again, ensuring that you don’t notice it!
A Small Experiment for You
At home today, take a hammer and smash your finger till your bones break.
Then, go to the doctor and ask them to fix it by blindfolding your eyes – now you cannot see the broken bones so, obviously, they aren’t broken anymore!
If you think that’s a stupid solution, why do you still use air fresheners with allergens and chemicals in them to rid your car of bad odour?
Maybe it’s because you don’t care about the health and welfare of those who sit in your car… or maybe because you’re just too <insert descriptive word here>!
Maybe we should start calling them air “fresheners”, with quotes and all.