The predecessors of Gurmeet Ram Raheem Singh

Quite a mouthful. You might as well call him by his stage name MSG, which is more commonly known as monosodium glutamate, which is supposed to be harmful to health.

There are, however, a number of real cases of multi-religious names. One is Major-General George Bharat Singh, who was prominent in the 1965 war. Unfortunately there is no suitable reference on the net, though you will find his name easily enough through Google.

There was a lesser-known but moderately successful cricketer named Ashish Winston Zaidi, who played for UP in the Ranji Trophy for many years:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/india/content/player/36137.html

The Indian film industry was fond of titles like this. The best known is “Amar Akbar Anthony”, but there were also “John Jani Janardhan” (with Rajnikanth, no less) and “Ram Robert Rahim” in various languages around the same time.

And the song “Love Charger” evoked memories of the chargers used by Papillon and his friends.

“From the beginning of the book you’re left in no doubt as to how hard you needed to be to survive. On the boat heading for South America each prisoner carries his own ‘charger’, a slim metal cylinder for storing your cash – cash that would be sorely needed in order to make a break.

I kissed this three-and-a-half-inch , thumb-thick tube before shoving it in my anus. It went up high into my large intestine. It was part of me.”

 

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More odd station signs in India

A number of odd things can be seen in station signs if one keeps one’s eyes open. Here are a couple picked up from the net. Copyrights of the pictures are that of their respective creators.

First, this one from New Delhi.

New Delhi..

Nothing out of the way, right? Now see this one, also from New Delhi:

New Delhi unofficial

See how the Punjabi inscription has been added. Just wondering if this was done by the railway staff or someone else.

Something similar has happened at Titagarh station near Barrackpore.

First see this one of Barrackpore, which can be taken as the “standard practice” in this area:

Barrackpore

It can be seen that it has Bengali, Hindi and English.

Now see the sign at Titagarh:

Titagarh

It looks as if  an unofficial Urdu inscription has been added, like in the case of New Delhi above. Thanks to those who pointed this out.

It does look to be unofficial as the official signs would have the inscriptions of different languages to be of similar sizes and not in relatively tiny sizes as in these two examples.

To end on a lighter note, here is a more humorous example of modifying signs (this time from England):

Turban outfitters

When Trump meets Bolmondoley

Joke writers have a tough time with President Trump. He creates so many opportunities for jokes that they have little to do. Or he says something which is too difficult to decipher, and it may or may not be funny. One such occasion was the use of the word “bigly” which is supposed to be a new word he invented.

However, experts have concluded that it was a wrong transcription of the more common “Big league”, particularly as his brand of New York English was not understood by most. More on this here:

http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-37483869

and here: http://edition.cnn.com/videos/politics/2017/01/25/bag-the-bigly-moos-pkg-erin.cnn/video/playlists/wacky-world-of-jeanne-moos/

There are, of course, place names and person’s names similar to “bigly’, like this one-time English cricketer:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/content/player/12454.html

But British English has its share of pitfalls with words often being spelt in a way which do not reflect the pronunciation. Like Cholmondoley. Think you can pronounce it?

Find out here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4NTLkJqpC-A

The humorous possibilities in Cholmondoley being pronounced as Chumly was not lost on music-hall comedians of a century ago, who were noted for their low level of humour. Some examples can be seen here:

http://audiotalk.proboards.com/thread/3587

One example of such corny humour was bringing someone on stage with a placard saying “Bolmondeley”. Go figure.

Meet Hardik Patel-not the one you are thinking of

The name’s Patel. Hardik Patel.

Unlike my better-known namesake, I only trouble opposing batsmen.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/793915.html

https://cricket.yahoo.com/photos/india-a-vs-south-africans-slideshow/hardik-patel-of-india-a-take-the-wicket-of-david-miller-of-south-africa-during-the-t20-warm-up-photo-1443529291229.html

For example, see this scorecard for the Irani Cup:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/irani-cup-2016-17/engine/match/1053705.html

Maybe one day the national selectors will accidentally include me instead of Hardik Pandya. (Something of this sort happened because of confusion between two J.Yadavs some years ago).

The Devil’s scoreboard and other devilry

It had to happen one day in a Test: 666/6

devils-score

On the 4th day of the India vs England Test at Chennai, 19 Dec 2016.

Meanwhile, here is the Devil’s own locomotive (picture credit Sachin Balwatkar). It is now homed at Sabarmati shed, and was homed at Mhow some years ago. There were also some 666* s homed at Golden Rock.

loco-6666

More from the Devil’s domain here: Hell, Norway:

hell-signboard

And the railway station there:

hell-station

You may think that God has some influence here:

hell-goods-shed

However, this is Norwegian for “Goods dispatch”

In closing, there has to be at least one joke involving devils. Here is one from 2016, which refers to the US presidential election:

trump-devil

 

The US Presidential elections and Indian place names

As the saturation coverage of the US elections will continue for a while, we may as well try to match their leader’s names to place names in India.

While the incumbent President Barack Obama came to India more than once, he does not seem to have visited this place:

barrackpore

His predecessor Jimmy Carter did indeed have a village near Gurgaon named after him. Supposedly his mother had been there with the Peace Corps at one time:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carterpuri

A halt station called Carterpuri (between Bijwasan and Gurgaon) was listed in the timetable for a few years, though it seems to have closed down long ago and no trace of it can be seen now. A new station called Palam Vihar Halt was built some years later in the same general area, though no trains appear to stop there now.

When Bill Clinton was President, the combination of him and the First Lady was referred to as Billary. Therefore, a logical place for them to visit is:

bellary-map

although it has now been renamed to:

ballari-new

If (somehow) Donald Trump wins, he could visit the small town of McDonald’s Choultry in Tamil Nadu, though the station (between Salem and Erode) was long ago renamed to:

magudan-chavadi

This name change in the 1970s was perhaps the first step against the McDonaldization of India.

We close with this one currently making the rounds on social media, presumably taken in around 1970:

bill-and-hillary

Also read this one: https://abn397.wordpress.com/2015/01/14/present-and-past-us-presidents/

Famous Diesels

The original inventor Rudolf Diesel 

The French police dog Diesel who was martyred in the terror attacks in France in 2015:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diesel_(dog) . She deserves to have her picture here:

diesel-dog

 

The other famous Mr Diesel: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vin_Diesel

The Italian clothing brand: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diesel_(brand) 

which often features in jokes about Rahul Gandhi and the prices of petrol and diesel.

And finally the icon of Indian Railways: