15 April 2006

A Change That Is YOU

The smell is intoxicating me; my eyes are getting heavy and my thoughts gone for a toss. Hold on, I’m not tipsy; neither I’ve come out of an election procession, just that I have just finished a soap opera from the house of Balaji Production. Had Alfred Nobel been sitting in the couch and watching the ever going soap operas that the cable dish out, he might actually used his invention bombing the likes of these saas-baahu serials. What amazes me most is the amount of fan following these serials generate? To refresh the mind of the avid viewers as well as those of you who are quite alien of these facet of our culture I would like to give you my take on these.

Don’t know how to start; actually it was out of curiosity that I have started watching these serials. The expensive costumes, the highly dramatize acting, the matrix like fighting and the trio of “Anger-Jealousy-Tear” exactly in that sequence, coupled with three times slow-motion of a scene makes our industry a genre apart. Even though the story line ends up being in predictive lines, the writers are smart enough to create new dimensions and that too in matter of days even at times minutes. On a last count a very famous serial was having at least 7 directors shooting at the same time but with different plots. I thought we all should learn the art of multitasking from them, Is Bill listening? There is as if a mathematical relationship between the name and the starting letter. Each Balaji Production has to start with the letter “K”, with each serial having an extra “a” or “e” or “I” in their nomenclature. Surly some people make it a point to show that they are good in alphabets too!

The story line hardly matters rather than the name should be numerologically perfect. This lead to my next part of the post which about a story that I have heard while I was a kid from my grandpa. He used to tell me that it is based on his friend’s life.

He is Mukul, a very ordinary boy staying in a very ordinary village in East India under British India. Born exactly 100 years back when the best a man could buy is the dream for independence. He was not a very good student, neither was he excellent in anything. As I’ve said, a very ordinary boy. But one thing that stood out is his tenacity. Mukul was then in class VIII, pretty heavy for his small head. The books hardly made any sense, rather the likes of Mangal Pandey was his hero. Oho! I forgot to tell you about his family. Mukul was the youngest child of the family. He had one elder sister who eventually expired when she was just 12 years because of bleeding while giving birth to a still-born child. Mukul was 6 years old then, a year later his mother expired. The world collapsed for him. There is only his Baba left to support him. Mukul was in class VIII; he had a passion for football. He left the school to join the local coaching club. He used to come everyday in the morning at 7 am and practiced till 5 pm taking couple of hours of break for lunch. His Baba always aspired that his Mukul will one day bring pride to the village by becoming a good player. Everyday Mukul used to come for the practice along with his father, who used to sit at the bench wearing the black glasses under the mango tree. With every passing day Mukul tried to improve his play, but he was never taken into the first 11 of any match. He kept on trying for 3 years. In these three years he used to come in the morning for practice and his father would silently sit in the bench. But in these three years he never got a chance to play. At times his coach used to tell Mukul that he is not good enough than the rest of the boys. But he never gave up. One day he went to his coach and urged him, “Please sir, let me play in today’s match”. His coach replied,” today is final match and I can’t take chance”. Mukul was adamant; he went on insisting that his coach should take him in the first 11. After a great deal of conciliation the Coach agreed, but told Mukul that he will play only for first 20 mins. That 20 minutes changed the complexion of the match, Mukul scored 3 goals in first 20 minutes, his coach didn’t replace him and at the end of the match Mukul scored 8 goals setting a record. The victory was euphoric, the entire village was proud of Mukul. His fathers dream came true. “Mukul… Mukul, where is your Baba” Coach asked. “Sir, the man who used to sit in that bench watching me practice from 7 in the morning to 5 in the evening was blind. He was my Baba. He had faith in me that I’d one day make everyone proud by playing. Sir, he expired in the morning and today I played so that he can see me playing a match from the skies above”.

Believe and self-conviction can change lives. It is for you to understand how capable you are.