Two rats met outside the drain hole. One rat said to the other, “Ratty, do you know something?”
“What?” asked Ratty.
“People of Nepal have decided to change everything old into something new. Isn’t that wonderful?”
“Why, that’s great!” said Ratty. “I too was getting tired of the same old things to eat and the same old sewage pipes to walk along. Are they changing some of these sewage pipes that are clogged with their pads and condoms?”
“No, silly,” explained the other. “That’s going to be too expensive!”
“Are they going to eat something new, Teethy?”
“Don’t be stupid,” said the other. “I’m not ‘Teethy’ anymore! I have acquired a new name in my New Nepal. My name is spelled Y-h-t-e-e-t. Can you pronounce that?”
“I can’t,” said Ratty. “Can you teach me how to?”
“It’s pronounced tee-thee!”
“But what’s new about that?” asked the confused friend.
“The spelling!” replied Yhteet. “How wonderfully dull some Nepalese are!”
Poor Ratty did not know what to say to this insult. He decided to say nothing as a simple way to avoid conflict with a friend. He played the dullard and asked, “How are they making a New Nepal?”
“They’re making a New Nepal with words and letters! When one man says ‘people’ for example he means everyone who does not disagree with what he says. Since for the Nepalese ‘to disagree’ is a synonym of ‘to be thrashed to death,’ New Nepal has more people than Old Nepal ever had.”
“Yea! That’s great! Now they won’t have to count how many real people are living in the country. What a great idea!”
“You’re not really as dumb as I thought you were,” complimented Yhteet. “However,” he continued, “you are not a toirtap!”
“What’s a toirtap?”
“One who loves his father’s land and kills his mother’s children like unwanted enemies,” said Yhteet.
“’A toirtap is one who loves his father’s land and so kills his mother’s children like unwanted enemies?’ I don’t want to be a toirtap! Never!” said Ratty. “It’s very un-rodent!”
Yhteet took a moment to digest this before he said, “I did not say ‘so.’ Why don’t you try to understand?” After a moment’s consideration, he spoke in a quiet sort of way, “Now, Ratty, I’d like you too to help build a New Nepal. What do you say to we two working together?”
Ratty considered this for a moment. He was unhappy with the way things were. The drains were too thick and clogged. Food was too scarce. People hoarded their grains so well that he was forced to recourse to what was rejected by them as wastage. He had as much right to live as they had. Lord Rat had created all animals equal but had made the rats superior in intelligence. O, if only He had not given men as much brains as He had!
Ratty decided to help Yhteet build a New Nepal where equal distribution of grains was a constitutional right. Considering the population of rats and men and their females too, such a distribution was going to make everyone poor and starving. However, superiority of any sort was against The Law of New Nepal. It would be a blasphemy for a rat to be considered right where the law-makers were claiming to be right because everybody else was wrong.
So, Ratty asked, “Teethy!”
Oops! He shouldn’t have thought of the spelling that way!
Ratty corrected himself and said, “Yhteet! How can I help you build a New Nepal?”
Yhteet almost felt like kissing Ratty! He was proud of this drain rat. He spoke with almost caressing words, “My dear Ratty, while men are becoming more international by adopting another nation’s national language as their own, we too have to go international by changing the map of Nepal. Let us get rid of everything old! If the triangular national flag is old, the triangular Everest peak is also old. Let us go and reshape the tallest peak of the world and make a name in history!”
“That,” said Ratty, “is the most wonderful idea a rat can have in his whole life! You’re a genius!”
“Ideas change the world!” agreed Yhteet. He was elated with his successful rhetoric.
“True,” agreed Ratty. “Now prove that you can gnaw away the highest peak to create a New Nepal. Let frontiers go international. Let language express whatever you want it to express. Let toirtap be the ideal of your life. I feel hungry and must rummage the drains before other rats consume what I might survive upon. Allow me, Sir Yhteet, to live undisturbed by your great ideals and I will cast a vote for you in the next elections.”
Saying this, Ratty disappeared into the sewage pipe.
“He will wake up one day,” said Yhteet. “Poor victim of Old Nepal!”