“We are trying our level best”; what a lovely expression it is. The first thing noticeable about it is that it is typically Indian, almost at par with such great Indian innovations as “Law would take its own course”, and “We are servants of the people who have elected us”. The use of this expression fills us with hope, satisfaction and joy. Someone, somewhere is thinking of us and – you guessed it – trying his level best to get us out of the situation we are in. For example, we may be stranded on the road for nearly two days, with flood waters menacingly swirling around us, but as soon as we hear this reaction from the authorities, we do a jig in sheer joy. “Aha”, we scream, “now things would improve. We could have been worse off if they hadn’t been trying their level best.” Here are a few other equally amusing uses of this expression:
Doctor to Relatives of Patient: Please don’t lose heart just because his heart, kidneys, liver and pulse have failed. I am trying my level best to make him win the next Olympics Marathon.
Husband to Wife: Disregard my seeming disdain for the last three hours. I am trying my level best to understand your point of view.
Son to Father: I knew you would get carried away by my current level of marks, which universally resemble eggs. Don’t you realise that I am trying my level best to improve?
Taxi Driver to Passenger on the Road to Airport: It has been only ten hours since we left Navy Nagar and already we have reached Worli. As you can see, I am trying my level best to reach the airport at the fastest.
Indian Politician to General Public: I accept the fact that 63 years after independence, half our countrymen are living below the poverty line; that we don’t have drinking water, electricity, houses, food and schools. However, don’t ever forget the redeeming fact that we in the APNA (All Promises No Action) Party are trying our level best.
Agriculture Scientist: In the last seventeen years of our experiment, this piece of land may not have produced a single grain of rice. But, since I am trying my level best, we shall soon have bumper crops.
Indian Hockey Team: None of you should be disheartened that we were first from the bottom in the last tournament. But, can’t you see we are trying our level best and next time, if the umpiring, playing conditions and cheering improves, we may just win the gold.
PWD (NH): It may be that the current state of roads resembles the craters on the Moon but is there any doubt in your mind that we in the PWD are trying our level best?
Lawyer to Client: You are being very cynical about the Indian judicial system simply because your case has taken twenty-six years to settle. You never appreciate my trying my level best to obtain the verdict in your favour at the earliest.
Accounts Officer to Widow of Employee: Madam, everyone is full sympathy for you for the loss of your husband. We are trying our level best to complete the pension formalities. As soon as the file is obtained from the secretariat……
How nice the world would become if people won’t try their level best? How nice would it be if things are made to work in India, that is, Bharat?
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