Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Fire escape

Kabaddi, a boisterous and occasionally violent team game, is immensely popular in Bangladesh where it's apparently the national game[1], and beyond. It's essentially a cross between British Bulldog and Tag, but has the added twist that you're not allowed to inhale while attempting to tag an opponent.

Witty remarks alluding to Bill Clinton aside, the method employed to demonstrate that someone is not inhaling is to have them chant, "KabaddiKabaddiKabaddi..."

Which brings me on to my main point. I have to play 'Stairwell Kabbadi' whenever I visit the other office in the same building. Is this some attempt of mine to keep fit? Well, maybe, if the avoidance of passive smoking counts as keeping fit. The offices themselves are all designated as non-smoking areas, so the smokers choose to get their collective fix in the fire escape, notwithstanding the 'Please No Smoking in Stare' [sic] signs that the building management has kindly pinned up. The alternative option - to smoke outside - evaporates during Ramadan, of course.

There is an alternative to Stairwell Kabaddi, which is to become a Nybster. Regrettably both lifts are so slow that waiting for them can take aeons.

At least my complaints that mixing naked flame with flammable trash was dangerous has at last largely eliminated the hazardous habit of dumping cardboard boxes and other office waste in the fire escape. How are we supposed to evacuate a building if the fire is in the stairwell and we're not allowed to use the lifts?

That's still not as bad as my erstwhile residence, Grumpy Goat Towers. The bottom of the fire escape stairs there were habitually used for storage of mattresses, supermarket trolleys and moribund bicycles[2], and were thus completely useless as emergency exits. Requests made to the management to clear it out, followed by threats to inform Civil Defence[3] went completely unheeded.

[1] Not cricket, then? I'm surprised.
[2] Not unlike Birmingham Canal Navigations.
[3] Arabic for 'Fire Brigade'.


1 comment:

Mars said...

i like the term "stairwell kabaddi" hehe


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