Saturday, August 25, 2012

A NAVAL YARN - One Mogul Replaces Another Mogul


Bosses May Come and Go but THE MOGUL RAJ CONTINUES
ONE MOGUL REPLACES ANOTHER MOGUL
A Naval Yarn
By
VIKRAM KARVE

This happened long back, more than 33 years ago, in the early days of my naval career, when I was a bright young officer.

It was the farewell party of our boss, the Captain of our ship.

Everyone was happy to see him go ashore on transfer at the end of his tenure, for he had been a terrible boss, a ruthless taskmaster, quite a tyrant, and he had made our life hell. 

A strict authoritarian disciplinarian, he wielded total power and commanded the ship like a martinet, ruling us like an absolute monarch.

As far as he was concerned, it was “his” ship and there were just two categories of people on-board:

HE (the supreme master and commander)

and

WE (the rest of the crew, which included everyone else starting from the second-in-command right down the junior-most sailor).

He exemplified the naval saying immortalized by Captain Queeg in the classic Navy Novel by Herman Wouk – THE CAINE MUTINY:

 “…there are four ways of doing things on this ship – The Right Way, the Wrong Way, theNavy Way, and My Way. On my ship we do things My Way…”

I had nicknamed him: “MOGUL”.

At the farewell party, whisky was flowing freely and everyone was thoroughly enjoying the party, downing peg after peg of the choicest whisky, happy to see off “Mogul” and celebrating in anticipation of the forthcoming “freedom” from “Mogul Tyranny”. 

For me, it was an evening of mixed emotions, since it was my farewell party as well, for as luck would have it, by sheer coincidence, I too was going ashore on transfer.

In fact, our tenures, Mogul’s and mine, had been coincidental – we joined on board ship on the same day and we were leaving the ship together.

As it is customary to “look after” the farewell guest very well, my shipmates had plied me with plenty of whisky, peg after peg, down the hatch, and by the time I was called upon to deliver my farewell speech, I was feeling very “nice”. 

As I told you once in my blog: In the Navy, Officers don’t get Drunk – they only feel “nice”. 

And I was feeling awfully “nice”.

Being the junior, I was called to deliver my farewell speech first.

As I told you, I was feeling awfully “nice” due to the enormous amount of whisky I had imbibed.

At first, I said the customary things – I thanked my shipmates, talked about the good times we had together in the wardroom, but as I spoke, my inhibitions started peeling off, and then, in a spurt of audaciousness thanks to the Dutch Courage fuelled by the alcohol flowing in my veins, gesticulating towards the Captain, I blurted out:

“I know all of you are happy to see off this Mogul. But remember one thing – ONE MOGUL REPLACES ANOTHER MOGUL. Don’t be too happy, since it may well turn out that the new Mogul may be worse than this Mogul. And then you will reminisce and remember the “good old days” you had under this Mogul.”

After uttering those words, I narrated the story of one my favourite books – ANIMAL FARM (an allegorical novel by George Orwell) where the tyrant humans are overthrown by the animals, who achieve “freedom”, but soon, the pigs, who led the uprising, gradually assume control, and eventually the pigs become worse tyrants than the humans and they make life hell for all the other animals.

A few months later I ran into one of my ex-shipmates and he told me that my prediction had come true. Life onboard had indeed become so terrible under the new Captain that in the evenings, everyone sat in the wardroom drowning their sorrows and reminiscing about the “good old days” in the earlier “Mogul Empire”. 

“The earlier Mogul was a bullshitter, but at least he was an honest bloke,” my ex-shipmate said, “but this new Mogul is not only a terrible bullshitter but he is a bloody freeloader to boot!”

Isn’t this “Mogul” theory true in real life too?

Leaders come and leaders go, elections happen, governments change, regimes come and go, sometimes democracy becomes dictatorship and dictatorship becomes democracy, socialism metamorphoses into globalization, liberalization, crony capitalism – all sorts of things happen, but for you and me and the common man (the “aam aadmi”) nothing much changes and our lives remain just the same (in fact, sometimes, it may even get worse). 

Of course, there are exceptions – yes, there are a few genuine leaders who really make a difference, but nowadays, such examples are few and far between. But, by and large, the Mogul Principle prevails. 

So before you rejoice too much on hearing the news that your tyrant boss is going to go away, remember THE MOGUL PRINCIPLE :

“ONE MOGUL REPLACES ANOTHER MOGUL”

Cheers. Have a good day.


VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2012
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Did you like this article?
I am sure you will like the 27 short stories from my recently published anthology of Short Fiction COCKTAIL
To order your COCKTAIL please click any of the links below:
http://www.flipkart.com/cocktail-vikram-karve-short-stories-book-8191091844?affid=nme
http://www.indiaplaza.in/cocktail-vikram-karve/books/9788191091847.htm
http://www.apkpublishers.com/books/short-stories/cocktail-by-vikram-karve.html
COCKTAIL ebook
If you prefer reading ebooks on Kindle or your ebook reader, please order Cocktail E-book by clicking the links below:
AMAZON
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005MGERZ6
SMASHWORDS
http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/87925

Foodie Book:  Appetite for a Stroll
If your are a Foodie you will like my book of Food Adventures APPETITE FOR A STROLL. Do order a copy from FLIPKART:
http://www.flipkart.com/appetite-stroll-vikram-karve/8190690094-gw23f9mr2o

About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer. Educated at IIT Delhi, ITBHU Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories, creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional research papers in journals and edited in-house journals for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing. Vikram lives in Pune India with his family and muse - his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal: http://karvediat.blogspot.com
Professional Profile Vikram Karve: http://www.linkedin.com/in/karve
Vikram Karve Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/vikramkarve
Vikram Karve Creative Writing Blog: http://vikramkarve.sulekha.com/blog/posts.htm
Email: vikramkarve@sify.com      


© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
Post a Comment