Thursday, November 12, 2009

Exclusive interview with Mr. Smart Rider from Bangalore

I had the great opportunity to meet Mr. Smart Rider from Bangalore, India during my trip here. He is a well spoken-about person outside of India. Having achieved fame for having innovative riding skills in India, he spent some time in Singapore past week. In an exclusive shreeni.info interview, he speaks about Singapore riders' lack of value for time or money, self expression and freedom:

Shreeni: Welcome, Mr. Smart Rider, how are your doing today?
Smart Rider: Thank you for welcoming me on your blog, please call me SR.

Shreeni: Fair enough, so let me start by asking you about your Singapore riding experience. What were the highlights?
SR: It is a generally clean city, but I was most disappointed to find that all Singaporeans have no value for time or money.

Shreeni: How did you come to that conclusion?
SR: Take for instance the rider in Singapore. Not only do they wear helmets, but they also make their pillion riders wear helmets. Not just that, they apparently buy costly helmets which are good enough to survive a crash, but what's the use? Everybody knows the only purpose to buy a helmet is to show it to the cops. Why waste money on costly helmets? In fact, in my country, we can just mold used plastic in the shape of a helmet and carry it in our hands. That's good enough to keep the cops away. So, as you see, Singaporeans are a spendthrift lot.

Shreeni: What about your views that Singaporeans having no value for time?
SR: Again, I had ample opportunity of seeing riders there. They waste valuable road time on unnecessary things like stopping at red signals and pedestrians crossings. We Indians value our time. We cant wait for such insignificant things. As you might have seen in Bangalore, we don't follow these conventions.

Shreeni: Isn't that against the law?
SR: Not really. As you see, we Indians believe in true freedom. Not only is the nation free, but every individual is also free to do whatever he feels like. Thats what I like about our nation - we are not hypocrites like other advanced nations, calling themselves free and subjecting the residents to such restrictions like stopping their vehicles based on a color. That even sounds racist to me.

Shreeni: But what about the high level of fatalities in Bangalore compared to Singapore. Isn't that caused by "freedom", as you put it?
SR: Not really. All riders, both in Singapore and Bangalore, are performing nation building. Since India had set itself the goals of population control, all we are only doing is contributing our meagre bit towards it by keeping fatality rates high. But again, since Singapore birth rate is falling and all, motorists there are doing their bit by not having fatalities. You see, riders in both countries are a patriotic lot.

Shreeni: What about the incessant honking seen in India, did you see that in Singapore?
SR: No and that was surprising. In Bangalore, and in India in general, we consider it a mode of self expression. The volume of honking and the music are the way we express ourselves and our standing as a great free nation. I wonder why the Singaporeans don't do it.

Shreeni: But doesn't your "self expression" cause inconvenience to fellow riders?
SR: Thats mathematically impossible. Assuming I express myself at volume v1, there always exists volume (v1 + 1) at which a fellow rider can express himself. Since this is a recursive expression tending to infinity, any self-expression by any rider can, in theory, be mitigated by a higher self-expression by a fellow rider. Given that option, if a fellow rider chooses to only listen to my expression, he is expressing himself with that choice. So, its all a mode of self-expression.

Shreeni: Fair enough, Mr Smart Rider. I hope to be in touch with you.
SR: It was a pleasure talking to you.

(ps: For the humor challenged, this is a sarcastic post)

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