Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Astad, Ustad

Many, many years ago in the middle of a concert in Rang Bhavan, I realized the music being performed on stage demanded a smoke. Not because it was that good, but because it was that bad. Only one problem. None of us had any smokes left. There were many smokers around me but I couldn't just ask anyone for a toke.

Everyone knows the risk involved in asking the wrong kind of smoker. Some are stingy. "Just two puffs, ok?" Some make you wait. "Let me get to the filter". Others want to share the "one love, man, one love, woohoo Lord Shiva, Jah, man" vibe. Even back then I detested stoner talk. Unless it was coming out of my mouth, of course. So I turned to the guy next to me. He was a middle-aged man, smoking a big fat one and I prayed he wouldn't ration, make me wait forever or quote from Bob Marley.

"Can I have a toke?", I asked him. "Sure", he said and handed me the smoke. I pulled hard once, twice, thrice and it dawned on me. I had just bummed a smoke from Astad Deboo. So proud I was at my Celebrity Recognition skills, I had to share it with the Celebrity in question. "You are Astad Deboo!". And just in case he had forgotten important details of his career, I even yelled out "you once danced with Pink Floyd on stage!!" "Yeah, uh-huh" he said and took the smoke back from me.

"Pink Floyd!!", I shouted out again and felt my head grow woozy and my mouth get dry. My knees, they were both gone.

Rediff has a pictorial on the man.


Space Bar said...

mm hmm. some day there will be a post on the kind of people who've bummed smokes off one and done terrible things (sogged it up; talked too much). and there will be wondering if it was all worth it, if one shouldn't have just stayed home instead.


km said...

space bar: NEVER! There's no such thing as "talked too much" after a toke :D

Tabula Rasa said...

you forgot to add "and that's just like your opinion, man".