Archive for June, 2005|Monthly archive page

Missing DoorDarshan – yes, some impossibles do happen

I don’t watch the news in this country. The closest I get to the news is ‘The Daily Show‘. Being an old-fashioned person, I continue to rely on the newspaper. My concession to technology – reading the newspaper on the internet.

A couple of nights ago, I watched the news inadvertently (the TV was on, and I was too lazy to hunt for the remote), and am still recovering from the trauma. Don’t remember the network involved (with names like KWFA or KDFI or WXPGA, who does?) – one of the stories was about Fire Fighters ‘rescuing’ a bunch of ducklings. Mama duck was out strolling, with the ducklings in tow, when out of nowhere, an open drain appeared! Mama duck, being an old hand at dealing with open drains & other perils in the DFW area, neatly stepped aside. Poor ducklings, understandably still a little wet behind the ears (question – do ducks have ears?), did not. And to cut a long story short, their day ended happily. No, we do not know if their adventures included getting a ride in a big red fire truck.

A heart-warming story by any standards. Why am I being such a curmudgeon? Call it thwarted ambition. When I was a wee babe who knew nothing other than DoorDarshan and the ‘news’ they offered – I used to hate the news. It was always a time that Dad got the TV, and I was supposed to keep shut (an excruciatingly difficult task, as my usually two-ticks-above-being-declared-vegetative mind would be bursting with views to share the minute the news started.)

The only bits of the news I found interesting were those clips of the Prime Minister wearing yet another silly hat on a visit to yet another remote part of the country, in his/ her attempt to win the tribal vote. Indira Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, Rao, even the rather serious VP Sigh – no one was spared. I tried to imagine Manmohan Singh doing a tribal dance, and failed. Not willing to admit defeat, I tried to imagine him in a many hued hat made mostly of feathers. Failed again. The smart man wears a turban.

But I digress. Most of the news was filled with stuff that went way over my head – RBI increasing or decreasing interest rates, the Commerce Minister talking about trade deficits, the Union Budget, cricket… Thanks to 6 months of economics (only 3 of which count, as the other 3 were spent under mad, bad Dr. P whose insistence on certain new fangled instruction methodologies left 99% of my class, myself included, all at sea), I can at least pretend to understand the intricacies of Macroeconomic policy. (Cricket still goes over my head, but so do basketball, golf, American football, ice hockey and a vast number of other sports. I have long since stopped caring.)

All I want to do is watch the news and nod my head sagely a few times every other minute or so. A relatively modest ambition, I used to think. And what do I get? Ducklings! Just how am I supposed to feel grown up if by the time I do grow up, the news dumbs down? Do they have archives of old DD broadcasts? If so, where can I get them?

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A month and a week later

I was on a self-imposed ban for the last month and a week. Had to take an exam, and being Guilt’s favorite child, I felt that my time was better spent not blogging (OK, I admit it – one of the voices in my head told me so!) Knowing that no one was going to miss me helped me feel more of a martyr, which is always a GREAT feeling to have before an exam. (Note to my unborn children: This is how boring stories are born – – “When I was a young, I gave up everything when I had an exam!” – a slight variation on the “When I was a boy, I walked 10 miles to go to school story I personally have heard many many times from my own father)

But I digress – in the two months since I started blogging, I hadn’t received a single comment. I haven’t told my friends about this blog – call it another one of my eccentricities – wanting to get by without hits from loyal friends….

So I log in today, and I couldn’t help scrolling down just to see if someone had actually left a
comment… And lo and behold! Not one, but three! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Right now, I’m experiencing this rather sublime feeling, which my classmates from college used to call “cheap thrills” – for the uninitiated, here’s a definition: a feeling of undiluted joy arising from causes that appear trivial / stupid / inconsequential to others.

And what follows this fantastic moment – guilt. But of course! My blessed Goddess never deserts me. I am rude to not have responded to those who bothered to read me, and cared enough to say something to me. My deepest apologies.

So other than taking this exam, what have I been up to? Let’s see,
(a) traveled through 8.5 countries in the European Union
(b) wrote, nay, published my first novel
(c) had my column published by the New Yorker
(d) worked, traveled all the way from Frisco to Dallas, and back again a number of times, did not clean my apartment, did not get enough sleep
(e) found the love of my life, to whom I am now engaged

If you picked answer choice (d), congradulations!

Today, I got home from work early – I was actually in my kitchen at 7:53 PM! Wow! Hasn’t happened in weeks! I’m celebrating the feat by watching the Caesar miniseries on ABC. About 40 minutes into the first episode – so far, so good. Oops, the miniseries just took a deep hit… Mark Anthony’s speech is on – sans the ‘friends, Romans, countrymen’… Sacrilege!!!

Yes, I am one of those really annoying persons – I read the book, and insist on watching the movie / TV series and crib intensely when the movie / TV series strays the teeniest bit from the ‘original’. And considering that Hollywood is increasingly turning books into movies, I’ve been getting increasingly insufferable. Yes, evil me waits with bated breath for the Da Vinci Code.

OK, I have digressed enough for one entry. More in the days to come.