- CRITTER TALK
- NEWS I FIND INTERESTING
At the top of his bucket list was the desire to visit every place that has his name in it.
Odd perhaps, but it is his bucket list after all.
As a result he intended to visit all the places ending in ‘Stan’. There are seven countries in this category.
Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
I cautioned him that visiting anywhere on the planet with ‘stan’ at the end of its name could be dangerous at best but he is determined.
He was startled that I knew why these countries have ‘stan’ at the end of their names. ‘Stan’ is Urdu and Persian for ‘where I stand’ or ‘place of’, making it a sensible word to have in your countries name – if you speak the lingo anyway.
He even asked me whether I might like to either accompany him, or visit him, in one of his bucket list countries as he intended to spend at least a couple of weeks in each.
He then set about costing up his adventure. Within the hour, he realized that he couldn’t afford it. He couldn’t afford to go to any of them.
Personally, I was quite relieved. Going anywhere ending in ‘stan’ these days runs the risk of you meeting The Grim Reaper somewhat prematurely if you ask me.
I then suggested alternatives.
Unfortunately his daughter overheard my alternatives and, being one of ‘the offended generation’ is now not speaking to me.
I suggested ‘Londonistan’, my old hometown of ‘Oldhamistan’, ‘Bradfordistan’, ‘Rochdaleistan’ and, for a particularly cheap stop over as he could stay at my place, ‘Hayesistan’.
His daughter accused me of being racist and Islamophobic.
It was a joke you silly moo!
There happen to be a large number of people from, or descended from, nations ending in ‘stan’ in these particular places. Actually, there are plenty of other places too. ‘Rotherhamistan’ and ‘Lutonistan’ for starters.
I double checked with my daughter, who is also part of ‘the offended generation’. She just rolled her eyes and said “Daddy!”
I explained that there was no malice in it. It was a joke based on the undeniable fact that the aforementioned places in England did have an inordinate number of people from, or descended from, countries ending in ‘stan’.
I wasn’t mocking them. I wasn’t insulting them. I wasn’t even complaining there were too many of them (which made a refreshing change I suppose). It was a JOKE.
It wasn’t a nasty joke. It wasn’t a racist joke. It wasn’t an Islamophobic joke. It was, and remains, a jokey play on an undeniable fact.
In desperation I told my Muslim neighbor about it. He laughed at my renaming of the towns. He laughed even harder at the reaction of ‘the offended generation’.
“Some people”, he said, “really need to get a life” – and no, he didn’t mean me. So there.
What are we supposed to do? Never speak? Never poke fun? Never have a laugh? Well, clearly not if we seem to be having a joke at the expense of another ethnic group.
A bucket list? I might as well just put a bucket over my head and pretend the world isn’t there anymore.
Humor apparently now falls into the category of racist.
You know that American ventriloquist, Jeff Dunham? Well, over here in Blighty, many of ‘the offended generation’ think his act is racist and Islamophobic because of his glorious creation, Achmed The Dead Terrorist.
Seriously! I don’t know about over there in America, but, over here in Blighty, it’s reaching the point when being white is enough for suspicions to be aroused that you are racist and God, (or the deity of your choice), help you if you have the nerve to actually tell a mundane joke about anybody who isn’t white and you are.
I’m so so sorry that I am white. Please forgive me. I must accept that being white is now a crime. Especially if I joke about anyone who isn’t.
Utter utter BULLSHIT.