Letter writing, and other polite ways to deal with crap

by neo

Respected Mr. Damodaran,

As part of my neighborly endeavor to convince your kind self that your dog is the creator of the “doo doo” deposited frequently outside my front door, I have attached to this letter a set of nine photographs, one video and ten slides of my proposed presentation at the Society Meeting, tentatively titled: “Damodaran’s Doggie Doing Doo Doo.”

(I deeply regret my use of certain less polite euphemisms than “doo doo” during our recent discussion in the hallway. I’ve been in a foul mood since this morning when my day started, somewhat literally, on the wrong foot.)

Sir, please be advised that, after hearing the contours of your defense against these allegations, I now intend to call on a new witness—the maid known as “Ratnamma”, better known as the lady who cleans the hallways. Ratnamma has developed a reputation of being quite the canine expert—you might recall the decisive role she played in the Mrs. Bakshi vs. Pack Of Stray Dogs incident during Holi.

Ratnamma will testify that:

  1. The dog in the video recorded at my front door (time 0:10 to 0:53) is your dog; that his manner and posture suggests that he was about to powder his nose; that he would have done so had I not, in my enthusiasm to secure a good angle for my video, startled him.
  2. The color and texture of the deposits found at my doorstep (refer to pictures #1, #2, #3, #4, #5—all taken on successive days last week) are identical to the deposits left by your dog elsewhere in our building (refer to pictures #6, #7—showing your dog along with his generous donation to our building’s strategic manure reserves.)

Sir I do respect that it is still your contention that a stray dog bearing an uncanny resemblance to your dog is responsible for these actions, but I would submit to your fair judgment that your position is looking increasingly untenable, for the evidence is mounting. Consider: there were no untoward incidents during the entire week that your family spent in Tirupati—it is hard to imagine that the alleged stray dog modified his restroom arrangements on the basis of your travel itinerary.

Damodaran-ji, while I have your kind attention, I would like to bring to your notice another issue. As per the de facto routine established over the past year, your respected mother blows her conch shell every day at roughly 8:01 a.m. Sir, lately this aforementioned schedule appears to have changed. For instance, today the conch shell was sounded at 5:30 a.m., 5:33 a.m., 5:36 a.m., 5:43 a.m. and 5:48 a.m. If there has been a change in your mother’s prayer strategy, do let me know. Furthermore, at 6:01 a.m. today there was a new and hitherto unheard sound; while my wife is of the opinion that it was someone shouting “Govinda” at the top of their voice, my son remains undecided—he feels that it could have either been your mother trying to scare away a rapidly approaching Godzilla, or vice versa.

Finally, please allow me to express my sympathy for the harrowing morning you had on Sunday, when some rogue locked you in your own house by affixing a Godrej Navtal lock to your front door. The dastardly act was certainly not easy—the exterior bolt is designed to prevent this sort of mischief, and so the vandal needed to loosen the screws, relocate the exterior bolt and then affix the lock. One wonders why the country is in such a bad shape when we seem to have no dearth of innovation, talent, patience and dexterity when it comes to crime.

Sir let me put an end to the vicious rumors: my wife and I did not deliberately ignore your pleas for help as we left the building for our jog that fateful morning. We failed to notice your shouts—and the conch shell—because we, like most people in your immediate neighborhood, have grown rather immune to any loud sound emanating from your premises.

I was especially saddened to learn from Ratnamma that, perhaps due to his long and unplanned incarceration until the locksmith arrived, your dog was forced to perform his doggie duties within the confines of your house. I can’t even begin to imagine the stench, because I already know how bad it is.

I hope that with this letter I have clarified my position on the various obstacles that stand in the way of normalizing the bonds of neighborly brotherhood between our respective households. I now look forward to your esteemed presence in the Society Meeting tonight at 7 p.m. in the club house, assuming that by then—and here I refer you to photos #8 and #9—Ratnamma has cleaned the shit therein.



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