This guy ain’t no Raj, my Tamil friend and political junkie from another town.
He’s a bit on the dopey side. He’s yokel to the bone for an Indian and a freeloader too. He only comes to the motel to use the free wifi and watch the cable television.
Abdull the night manager said he was freeloading long before he started working here over three years ago. ‘He only asks me one question a night,’ says Abdull. ‘And I answer it with either one word or a grunt.’ They don’t really see eye to eye.
Wan, a Malay, felt like a milky and tea and a chat with me out the back. We were having a delightful conversation about racial harmony in Malaysia. ‘Basically you all hate each other,’ I said. “And those indians in the next town are the worst,’ I said, just stating a fact.’They have attitudes bigger than their station in life.’
‘Small time thugs is their station,’said Wan.
Conversation got around to the New Zealand Maoris. ‘They never get denied entry and can work and fuck their way around Australia, doing all the crime they want.’ I said it would be better if the Malays were allowed a free pass to Australia.’We’d get more work done.’ And the Australian aborigines, ‘they are more racist than their ‘haka’ loving cousins in New Zealand.’
I said this is what we are up against, ‘but you have your own problems with the curry heads here.’ He nodded, enthusiastically.
When the Indian freeloader got back from the toilet, he butted into our conversation and started speaking to Wan in Malay. Now that’s one of my pet fucking hates. ‘Can’t you have the courtesy to speak English.’ I pointed at Wan who nodded in agreement. He’s overweight, suffering from diabetes, a devout Muslim and very open minded to these kind of conversations. He speaks pretty good English too.
‘But I wasn’t saying anything bad about you,’ said Mr. India with Too Much Attitude.
I bet you weren’t asswipe. Abdull was telling me he was a ‘busy body’ of the highest order and always wanting to know who was fucking who at the hotel. When Abdull told me that he was also enquiring about what was I doing here, that really put me in the right frame of mind.
‘The Indians really must be careful,’ I told Wan. ‘If the Chinese gain power then they’ll stamp them out like cockroaches on the heal of their flip flops.’
‘Who said that?’ asked Mr. India with Too Much Attitude. He was nearly frothing at the mouth. ‘The Chinese won’t stand a chance. Back in the racial hay day -‘ he was talking about May Day in 1969 – ‘we marked up even more kills than the Chinese and Malay. And just to bump up the figures, we even killed a few Muslim Indians too.’
Was he boasting?
‘Now what’s your name?’ I asked. For two months I knew nothing about this freeloader except that he’s got a fixation with whores and gets very excited talking about the rates (the cheaper the better) and fucking bareback.
‘Well listen up Mr. Ali,’ I said. ‘It’s not exactly a secret that the Malays and Chinese hate you as a race.’
His finger started wagging at me. ‘You can say that to me but not to any other Indians or they will knife you.’
He was angry and eyeing off knife on the table that I had used to cut up some fruit. I said I was only relaying what people told me. I said as a person I quite like you, ‘I even have Indian friends.’ That was an obvious lie.
He tells to me continue doing what I’m doing on the computer, ‘But don’t try and create racial riots in my my country.’
First it was an Indian in Johor who told me fuck off back to Australia because my clothes stunk. Second time, an Indian threatened to call the police because I jumped the line. And now this jerk off.
But I wasn’t deterred and continued. I said the Chinese and Indians are only guests in this country. ‘The real owners are Malay so show the some respect.’
‘But I was born here,’ he said.
Yes, you are 100 percent Malaysian and all that jazz. And how dare I…
‘Do you like the Malays?’ I asked. He really thought he had checkmated me.
‘Yes I do.’
‘Well good boy. The Malays like grateful guests.’
Just before he lunged for the knife Abdull came out the back to see what was the commotion about. ‘Mahathir wants his son to be prime minister,’ he says, joining in the debate.’He was in power for 22 years and wants Najib out so that his dynasty can continue the line of dictatorial power.’
He also said that Anwah never buggered boys. ‘Mahathir was scared he’d wrestle power from him. He was a threat to his absolute power. The current government kept him locked up too for the same reason. But now Mahathir found it in his heart to side with the opposition. Do you think he might come clean and say that Anwar was innocent? Not on your life. Now he’s in the same bed with that Chinese politician from Penang he locked up for a decade.’
Signs of a desperate man, I said. And as soon as he starts his own party, then the dirt will start flying. The freeloader was flabbergasted but didn’t dare refute Abdull. He knew not to fuck with his free internet and cable television.
I said that Najib was a true Malay, and not Indian like Mahathir. Though he’s called the ‘pirate’ because he was born in Batam, in Indonesia, the island famed for ferocious pirates, which might explain the current looting of the government coffers.
Mr. Ali points his accusing finger at me again. ‘You just watch your back.’
I said I was a paying guest here and you? Abdull backed me up and said back off. ‘If you ever threaten my guest again, it won’t end well.’
We are hoping that Ali stops hanging around here. Abdull gives me a coffee. ‘Good work,’ he says. ‘The owners have been trying to get rid of him for the last eight years.’
I said Ali was a fucktard. Abdull said he was a liar too. ‘His name is Muthu.’
I told Abdull I’d be watching my back.
He said there was no need.
‘He’s an electrician who can’t even afford to pay for internet, let alone a Thai hitman.’
He thought I was pretty safe. “To understand racism is to be deeply embroiled in it.’
I really couldn’t disagree with him on that one.
Did I tell you that racial inflammatory joke yet?
‘No,’ said Abdull, ‘ you hadn’t.’
The Chinese say given a choice between a snake and an Indian, who would you trust your life with?
Abdull knew the answer to that one and laughed so hard, I swear to god the Hindu deities could hear him and were marching up from the Indian temples to our hotel to slay us all.
‘No problem.’ Abdull is always saying that. He says he’s not the night manager in a zero star hotel in the wrong part of town for nothing. ‘I’ve got history in this town. And if anyone were to make an enquiry, they’d think twice about fucking with me. ‘
He’s says not to spare another thought about the curry head. ‘If he doesn’t come back to tomorrow night, you’ll become an honorary member here for life.’
I’m really honored already. But I’m sure he’ll come again. People like him just don’t get it unless they are being smashed over the head with a thick plank. His dark shaved head would be very accommodating too it. He’s the type of guy who barges into someone’s conversation and then makes it his agenda.
‘It’s his inalienable right as an Indian born in Malaysia,’ said Abdull, who says he’s seen this so often before amongst the Indians. “It’s the kind of attitude born out of 22 years of rule under the dictator Mahathir.’
Abdull lights up a clove cigarette, and nods his head which seemed to sum up the disgust he had towards his fellow Malaysian.
‘He’s not the brightest spark. But if he does come back tomorrow we can work on him some more.’
In a country where you can’t even say ‘boo’ without being considered a racist, it seems tonight was one small victory for the hotel.
‘It was eight years in the making ‘ said Abdull. He was pleased indeed and I was more than happy to play my part.
The next night the Indian is back. But he’s quiet and is watching something intensely with Abdull at the front desk on his tablet. I reset the wifi and see a porn movie playing on a tablet.
He’s not taken the slightest interest in me. Then I turn the TV on. It’s an Indian soap opera and hitmen are closing in on the kill – a white Caucasian male. Just another reflection of what’s playing out in my mind.
I think it’s time to pack and move towns. I might pay Raj a visit.