The Most Dangerous Goan Writer!
I chanced upon an old friend at a book club in Gurgaon and little did I know that he will become my road to interviewing Pogoat – the most dangerous Goan writer. Yes, even I got intrigued about why people refer to his writing as dangerous? Don’t worry, I will take you there.
Pogoat used to live in Gurgaon while he was working on his first book – Fair-Weather Brother. He was in Gurgaon recently and we caught up at a roadside Chai stall in sector 57. Pogoat seemed somberly impressive, contrary to the tales I heard of his dangerous writing. So, upon finding the right spot between the conversation, I asked – what’s this noise about your writing being dangerous?
Pogoat: I think, it’s just the usual thing, whatever mainstream media can’t understand is termed dangerous. Everything that is different is labelled dangerous. Gays are dangerous, lesbians too. Marrying outside your caste is dangerous. Fair-Weather Brother is a creepy reminder of our current situation – drugs, prostitution, corruption, dwindling tourism industry and fear of an imminent nuclear disaster. These reminders could possibly be the reason why people are calling this a dangerous book.
I laughed, acknowledging the legend. So asked, ‘I noticed that while you mentioned drugs, prostitution, corruption, you didn’t mention any feminist issues. Maybe, MeToo or general violence against women? Are these aspects missing for any reason?
Pogoat: Are you crazy? Let me try and prove my worth as a Feminist.
And then Pogoat read from his book.
This Year-On-Year Growth concept works only if resources are unlimited. Frankly speaking-da, the only unlimited resource on earth is the human sperm cells. One drop of semen has 180 million sperm. As a matter of fact, machaa, there are few men in America who have apparently fathered 300 and 600 kids through sperm banks.’
James and I laughed in disbelief. ‘What bullshit, baba!’ said James. ‘Seven hundred kids, baba? That’s like father Abraham,’
I couldn’t stop laughing.
‘Bro, no kidding. Unlike women, men can have an unlimited amount of children. More children than the stars in the sky. That’s why this Year-On-Year Growth concept is a male’s concept, a full-on scam concept.’
‘What the fuck, baba,’ I said wearily. ‘So tell us then, what is progress?’
‘Machaa, progress today means destroying our planet,’ laughed Tenzin, finishing the grapes. ‘What we actually need, is a female concept-da, where everything is limited.
Ok, I guess, I take my words back. Thank you, Pogoat.
While this interview with Pogoat (a Goan writer) might seem quite sober, his first novel ‘Fair-Weather Brother’ is a dangerously different trip from the prominent love laced contemporary Indian fiction today.
Best described by Iris Gomes in her book review
Fair-Weather Brother is a scary reminder of the times we live in and presents a bleak outlook that has an Orwellian feel to it –bordering on a 1984ish type of a chaotic situation. Drugs, prostitution, unnecessary airports, the fickle tourism industry and fear of an impending nuclear disaster, all make an appearance.
The writing style in Fair-Weather Brother is realistic. Pogoat does not mince words in his narrative, and one must admit, despite having knowledge of the reality of most of what is described in the novel, it proves to be unsettling reading nonetheless. Fair-Weather Brother forces you to evaluate your own perspective and actions in a world that seems to be going mad.
You can buy the Kindle or Paperback version of Fair-Weather Brother from here – https://amzn.to/2zvl2iC
See Pogoat Talk
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