First off, Happy Belated Diwali!
So, I'm just now getting around to watching some of last week's television, and in my normal fashion, I never watch commercials/promos/etc so I had no clue as to the theme of this past week's episode of The Office. Wow, I was completely unprepared for an entire episode, not only titled Diwali, but with Diwali/Indians as its central theme.
I have to say, my knee-jerk reaction was to cringe. In what fashion is mainstream American television going to slay my culture? Not to mention one of THE most important and widely celebrated holidays in the year for Indians. Instead, I was completely and pleasantly surprised.
(Just for reference, Diwali was on October 21st this year. The show aired on Nov 2, so it was just a touch late... but I'm really nitpicking here.)
It was strangely exhilarating to watch the episode unfold. It was a great blend of cultural tension (and therefore perfect for The Office's slightly uncomfortable, squirm-in-your-seat brand of humor): equal parts mockery of both Indian sterotypes of Americans, and American sterotypes of Indians. Bonus were the "inside jokes" for the Indians watching.
Thank you Mindy Kaling (and of course the rest of the head honchos at the show) for even putting this holiday on the map in American culture, let alone writing/acting in this wonderful episode. Brava, chica. How can it be that you and I are about the same age? I feel so unaccomplished. But never mind me, keep doing what you're doing!
(I tried really hard not to give anything in the episode away for those that haven't watched it. If you don't watch the show at all... you're sorely missing out.)