by Towheed Feroze
I have a special eye for salacious news; you know the sort of stuff that sends a shiver down the spine. So, got the frisson when I read the news of a young guy and a girl caught in a toilet within the Dhaka University campus.
Reportedly, this incident happened in the TSC area, where the entry into the washroom by a young woman followed by a guy, her boyfriend, triggered curiousity plus anger among the public, who, later caught the couple in the act, handing them over to the police.
Bet all the thrill of doing it in a public toilet evaporated with a dozen angry and testosterone-charged people shouting from the other side of the door.
I hear members of the public, who discovered the act, were driven by a moral duty. Really! Well, I would have thought that it was the feeling of envy that someone was having all the fun while they were left sucking their fingers, which provided the motivation.
After all, when it comes to women, the finer virtues of men are mostly overtaken by their baser instincts. This is exactly why a guy who is unmarried with several girlfriends is disliked by others who either do not have the quality to chat up a girl or, the courage to keep on trying to befriend members of the opposite sex, brushing off rejections.
Anyway, here are two episodes from my own life, where the adventurous young men, in search of thrill and bliss, ended up creating a furore: Shamim, a young lad in his early twenties, used to come to our house regularly since he was a close friend of my younger brother. Soft spoken and courteous, he never failed to follow the proper social etiquette.
‘What a gentle boy,’ my grandmother once noted. However, one day, after coming back home late at night I could sense that something serious had happened since one of our young domestic helps was locked inside a room.
What’s the matter, I asked her and she showed me her hand on which she had used a blade to write the name, Shamim.
For a few minutes I thought it was perhaps the name of someone she had met but then found that the person was none other than our own ‘shanto chele’ (quiet boy). It seems, though he appeared calm on the outside, there had been a raging tempest within him – the storm of lust. Or, in Bengali film terms: Shanto keno oshanto!
It transpired that Shamim approached the girl, made a few lofty promises in return for sexual favours and the girl, in her romantic naivety, agreed.
The rest can easily be included in a movie plot; at that time, a large multi-storied building was being constructed by my grandmother’s home (which is now called Prince Tower) and Shamim used to go in that under construction building and take the semi-finished stairs to reach the fifth floor which was just opposite our roof.
Since a legal case was ongoing over ownership issues, the work was stopped for months with very few masons left.
Then, using one of the many large wooden planks left on the floor for making doors, Shamim (The prince of darkness) would come to our side, meet the girl, collect the honey and go away.
On that day, while crossing over from the haunted skeletal structure to the den of pleasure, Shamim was noticed by someone else smoking on the roof of a nearby building.
A man just crossed over to your roof, he came shouting and then……
Our Don Juan made a dash for it though we later caught him in his area. Naturally, he denied everything. One guy from his locality told me: you do not know, he (Shamim) collects posters of bikini-clad women; what can you expect from him?
Hmmmmm! A point one cannot refute.
One wet June evening in 2014, while dozing at home, got a phone from a guy who plays squash with me.
‘Boss, you have to come; I am caught.’ The languor evaporated as I became alert.
What have you done?
Well, this guy, the player in all sense of the word, was caught with his pants down in a village called Sanar Par, on the Chittagong Highway.
While reason told me to stay away, fellow feeling eclipsed all rational thought in the end.
I along with another friend was on our way to some unknown place outside Dhaka. Our source of strength: my New Age press card and, of course, the undaunted spirit of a journalist honed over the years.
The problem was that my lover boy was found in flagrante with the wife of another man!
While the husband was away, the wife phoned and our lothario ended up at her door in no time with a variety of fruits. Maybe he was planning to have fruit-sharing sessions in between romps!
Some people in the area sensed a jackal, locked the door from the outside and, informed the husband.
Police were called, the husband with a few other locals formed a moral brigade and was moving about menacingly with a machete and, I was on a mission to save a guy with a penchant for the forbidden.
In these cases, the best plan is to go on the offensive from the very first moment. ‘I am a journalist from Dhaka’ was enough to create a stir and, perhaps add more to the local gossip.
Whispers went around: Dhaka theikka shangbadik aise, mathae chul naikka (a bald journalist has come from Dhaka to save the culprit).
Negotiations began; my task was naturally to convince that there was a misunderstanding. The guy had come for a social visit and not to steal someone else’s honey.
In the end, we prevailed; the villagers seemed a bit disappointed, this event of catching a stranger with a local young wife had united all homes, triggering a wave of mouth-watering tales.
An abrupt end was not to their liking. Some even shouted: oi shangbadik re dhor (get the journalist!).
They wanted some action; at the end, the machete was put aside; the police left, the saved part-time lover promised never to pursue deviant fantasies and I drove back with a film plot plus a title: Amar ghor e oita kheda? (Who’s that in my room!).
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