Disclaimer: No animals were harmed in the creation of this blog post. All characters featured in this post are fictional. Any resemblance to any real persons, living or dead is purely intentional. 

A courtroom. Seated at the fore is LAzy Alonzo, the prosecuting attorney, alongside a harried poultry farmer. For the Defence stands Clea d’Almirah, beside a despondent looking Townie.

The atmosphere is tense. The Townie puts away her nail file and starts biting her immaculate nails.

[Enter Judge Roobahn]


[The Court Manager, Chess, coughs up a fur ball to clear his throat.]

Chess: All rise. [All rise] This court is now in session, the Honourable Judge Roobahn presiding.

Judge Roobahn:  Let’s finish jaldi jaldi. I haven’t checked on my Farmville artichokes in five minutes. Chalo, what happened today?

Chess: The case stands thus. The Prosecution claims that the Defence’s indiscriminate use of the #duckface has resulted in his ducks refusing to procreate in the…conventional sense with their own species. They have, instead, developed a bizarre affinity to the #duckface itself. The Defence…

Judge Roobahn [scratching head]: You mean the male ducks now like fake lips and not beaks?

Chess: Essentially, yes, Your Honour.

Judge RoobahnAchcha. Toh phir problem kya hai?


[LAzy Alonzo, M.A., BBA, LLB, steps forward.]

LAzy [clearing her throat]: Your Honour, my client appears before you with a grievance that challenges the decadent practices of not only this Townie, but of her generation as a whole. The #duckface is a menace which has its origins in the easy availability of technology, and has spawned the disgraceful cult of the #selfie. We take it for granted that-

Judge Roobahn: But sometimes they’re cute, yaar. If Snapchat was a paid app, I’d buy it.

LAzy: Your Honour, I compare the #duckface to the invention of Flappy Bird. Yes, we all downloaded it, and yes, it was fun, but as the creator rightly suggested, the addiction could result in the end of the world [pauses for effect.] If we don’t do something – if your astute and exalted self [Judge Roobahn sits up straighter] does not do something about the #duckface, the duck population of the world could soon be wiped out, you know or what? Because, food chain and all.

Judge Roobahn: My artichokes, Ms. Alonzo. Get to the point.

LAzy: Yes, Your Honour. The defendant recently visited my client’s farm, where she made insensitive use of the #duckface, in addition to #instavillage #countrylyf #nature #sunnysideup and #borntobewild. In the duration of her stay, my client found that his male ducks were no longer interested in, well, making babies, with their female counterparts. Instead, they now preferred her ducked decked-up, not to mention surgically enhanced, pout. This has to stop, right now. I’ve prayed for it in many languages. We stand to look at a future where the duck race no longer exists; where they do not roam wild and free to frolic and quack just the way Mother Nature ordained them to do. The thought brings tears to my eyes, and-

Judge Roobahn [frowning]: Stop with all these feelings, yaar. One person duck pouting can’t exterminate the artichokes, and-

LAzy: *coughs* Ducks, your Honour.

Judge Roobahn: Ducks. That only. And you’ve said enough. Now we’ll hear from Clea.

[Clea d’Almirah quickly stows away her phone and rises.]


Clea: Your Honour, the Prosecution has made its case on the basis of its assumption that the #duckface is immoral, indecent, shameful, etc. I ask you to cast your memory back to the Renaissance, the Golden Age of Art wherein the esteemed tradition of self-portraits has its roots. Banning the #duckface is a very feudal mentality. Artists who represented themselves in their art include the great Da Vinci and Raphael, Rembrandt and Van Gogh, etc. The defendant is part of the generation that has revived this great tradition, and as with all revivals, contributed to it in their own way.

Judge Roobahn: But that was then! No animals were harmed in the production of those paintings. Ab ki baat karo.

Clea: Modern science has reached such heights, Your Honour, that we can prevent the extinction of ducks quite easily. There are many species of duck: Muscovy, Mulard, Pekin, etc. We can isolate them from the #selfie-clicking population and make them breed! We can manufacture ducks! We can grow test-tube ducks! We –

Judge Roobahn: But it won’t taste the same na!  Royal China wala Peking Duck is too good, Ms. Almirah.

Clea: Your Honour, I humbly –

[Judge Roobhan jumps up suddenly, clutching his phone.]

Judge Roobahn: This is – um – a difficult case, so – er – we shall meet again tomorrow. Court adjourned [whispers to Chess.] Go check the High Court Whatsapp group! There’s stuff you wouldn’t believe! Much gossip. Huehuehuehue.

Do you think you have it in you to fight for the Justice often denied to the fictional, the trivial and the ridiculous? Then what are you waiting for? Sign up for Literary Arts’ Courtroom Event, ‘Jurist Inquiry’ and make sure Justice is served.

[Post adjourned]