JournalismPakistan.com November 6, 2018
There you are at this decent party enjoying the now rare crispness of the conversation, relieved there are still some intelligent people on the planet when someone says, let’s have a song, Mrs. Revti is here, she is a great singer. As you look on in mute horror at this first step in the musical hijacking of the evening Mrs. Revti denies her talent vehemently and is now exhorted by others to come on, give us a song. And you are thinking, hang in there lady, stick to your guns, don’t start singing, please, we are enjoying ourselves, we don’t want to be frozen into silence while you belt out your melodies.
Because like ketchup from a bottle once the first bit plops out the rest just flows and one song will lead to another and another and another and someone else will join in with his or her rendition and before you know it will be amateur night ad nauseam.
So now Mrs. Revti is being encouraged by her friends to go for it, conversation across the room is dying in throes of agony as people say, ssshhhh, sssshhhh and you are thinking if I wanted to be shut up I could have stayed at home. Now some enthusiast has picked up a fork and is hitting a plate with it to create background rhythm and Mrs. Revti is doing that mandatory pre-song clearing of her throat because the old girl has finally surrendered to popular pressure. The fact is she was not going to give up this opportunity to shine and that guy in the corner is her husband, possessive pride beaming like headlamps in a fog, and you groan inwardly because you know that’s the rest of the evening gone to hell in a basket.
People are now making suggestions on what song to sing and possible titles are being flung at Mrs. Revti. She is now all tanked up and ready for the long haul and you could cry and as is obligatory, there is a false start and then off she goes and you are standing there like something out of Madame Tussaud's waxworks. You cannot even move and refresh your drink because that would be rude and the first song segues seamlessly into the next as you stare woefully into the bottom of your empty glass and the person next to you whispers, she is good, isn’t she and you nod in miserable agreement. What you really want to say is if I wanted to go to a concert in offkey singing I would have done that, this is supposed to be a party.
(The writer is a Senior Editorial Advisor of Khaleej Times and the paper’s former Editor. He has also been the Editor of Gulf News, Gulf Today, Emirates Today and Bahrain Tribune)
The News October 21, 2016