A few Dhaka do’s & don’ts
No preamble here, straight to the chinta. When in Dhaka,
Do not state that you plan to live here permanently, even if you do. Instead say you are motamoti settled in some other city in some other continent, where you barely even reside.
The association with bidesh will automatically improve your social status.
Do state most emphatically that you are here for kaaj, and only for a few days. Start with less than a week and gradually increase it from there. As best is in, do mention how tiring work is and hint at your unavailability. Your dawat valuation will increase tenfold.
Do pretend you cannot recall where and when someone has respectfully invited you. It is best to do daam barano with those who sincerely reach out to you. Meanwhile, do launch detailed investigations into any dawats you have not been invited to and commit to memory all the details you can gather about where, what, when, whom all, because you are not meant to be there.
Do attack at least one to three persons at every social gathering you attend. It is soul enriching. And well rehearsed mean and nasty khonchas directed at unprepared and unsuspecting souls in a social arena is a demonstration of your supreme intelligence and sophistication (after all you live in bidesh). Plus, as you are only there for a few days, you may not get the chance to unleash your frustration elsewhere.
Do play the humble brag, as in display exhausted humility and reluctance when purposefully discussing your or your family members gazillions or brilliance or importance.
Do reinvent your background; it works. There are enough people who know nothing about the country’s socioeconomic history or the establishment to believe whatever rubbish you choose to manufacture.
Do actively seek attention, and then be outraged at scrutiny. After all, the two are not mutually exclusive.
Do not be brief or direct, as it will not be appreciated. Do be as indirect as possible, adding unnecessary names, facts, figures into your sentences, until you yourself do not know what you are saying. The greater the number of words used, the higher your intelligence ranking.
Do probe into everyone’s marital status, and those of their children and grandchildren too. The information you gather will ensure yours and your children’s and grandchildren’s success in life.
Do rush to befriend people you have nothing in common with or have nothing to say too. After all social media is a numbers game and you need to display your scores.
Do mention your spouse’s name in every second sentence. That way you will have assured all and sundry you are indeed happily married, and you are fused together.
Do become insecure when you see two people you barely know or like becoming close to one another; indulge in a bit a kotha lagano (indirectly of course) to keep them apart so you can then be closer to each than them to each other.
Do be contemptuous of those you perceive as having less than you. It is a true mark of your illustrious invented background.
Do continuously be negative about those you are threatened by and are jealous of. That will show you in a positive light.
Do criticize your friends’ other friends. It is imperative to create doubt in the minds of your friends about the relationships they have with those, other than you.
Do hone your small talk skills. Do take Chintamoni seriously.
Do not take Chintamoni that seriously.
Chintamoni grew up in Dhaka, where she will always belong, but never quite fit in. She is an enthusiastic traveller, a compulsive procrastinator, and a contumelious raconteur.