Monday, December 15, 2008

Sonny boy observations.....

While having his bath, Sonny boy lurrrrves to whirl the water in the bucket round and round with his hand, faster and faster, making a mini-whirlpool in the bucket wherein a hapless toy fish chosen for the bath dizzily whirls....
Done with the whirling for the day, the fish was coming to a rest on the surface of the water, when I tried to make Sonny boy apply his swimming lessons to the bathroom as well.

"Sonny boy, see, the fish is floating on top of the water like your instructor tried to make you float in the swimming pool... see... !
And I beamed at him, for he had just been taught to stay afloat a few days earlier.

A delighted Sonny boy beamed back at me.
"Yeah Amma, fish is floating on top of the water! Like I float at bottom of swimming pool!"

Sonny boy finally has a friend in the school bus whose name I know. Aman. Who he looks up to with all his heart. Who is a year older than him and in UKG. And who has a little brother Fayaz who is 3 and in nursery.
Since Aman is 6, it's Sonny boy biggest yearning to be 6 too. That magical age holds mighty possibilities. We tell him that 5 is not too bad. That it is just 1 less than 6. And he mulls it over.
Aman is 6!
I'm 5!
and Fayaz is - ZERO!

Aman's smallest word is law. Recently Aman set forth a big one. One that I wholeheartedly endorse.
About all tallers.
"If I taller than you, you hafto obey me. Aman said all tallers hafto be obeyed."
Long live this friendship!

I try to make Sonny boy not follow in his Acha's footsteps. I try to make him remember where he's left his things, and not go running to me for all things.
So whenever he comes to me saying Amma, I can't find this/that, I firmly tell him that it is his toy/book/whatever and that he should look for it himself and not expect me to find it for him.
The other day I was running late for office and I was running helter skelter, looking for my glasses. I was somebody who always used to search things out for my Mom. So in passing, I panted to Sonny boy-

"Sonny boy, have you seen my glasses?"
He looked at me and then-
"Glasses is your thing. You should know where you kept it. You should look for your things yourself."

Sigh! So much for good karma.

Friday, December 5, 2008


Today while covering Sonny boy up snugly with the razai, a pretty white one with red and green flowers on it, saw some strokes of blue ink across it.

Frowning sternly at Sonny boy, I asked- Who did this?
Big innocent eyes looked up at me. "What??"

"Who drew THAT?"
Big innocent eyes looked up at me, unwaveringly. "I think I don't know."

"WHEN did you draw that?"
"I think maybe on Wednesday."

Wednesday is just his favourite day to name, he has no clue when which day is.

"When did you draw that - today or yesterday?"
"I think maybe THAT day."

Thursday, December 4, 2008

News- the bad and the good.

News bytes over the last few days have left me thinking we were much better off without cable tv and the prolification of news channels. Like I never fail to tell my husband, the news is the news is the news. Just hearing it on 10 different channels doesn't make it any different. But the husband continues to surf news channels, and the very news channels seem determined to prove me wrong and prove the husband right to surf.

Maj. Sandeep Unnikrishnan fell to a terrorist's bullets last week in Mumbai. His loss is something that will affect his loved ones every day of their lives.
But what was media's interest in the same? To glorify a slain martyr, brave to his last breath, or to sensationalise anything and everything to gain that edge over its competitor?

We were shown clippings of his mother at his side as he lay in state. One would think that the media could let a heart broken mother grieve over her son in private, allow her some last few precious minutes alone with her son.. but still, maybe it is the media's job to bring to its viewers the last images of its warriors. Certainly we felt that much sadder for seeing his mother weep over her son.
But what followed was nothing short of a farce.

Firstly, the media reports that the Major's father was upset that while the Karnataka CM had considered the funeral worthy enough to attend, the Kerala CM did not deem it worthy enough. Anyway, later, as Sandeep gained more prominence as a national martyr, the Kerala CM deemed it time to visit the family.
And THEN media reported that Mr.Unikrishnan refused to meet VS Achuthanandan. It went further to take footage of the visit. What interest could we regular citizens have had in knowing whether a CM visited Maj. Sandeep's house or not, and whether his father greeted him or not? But the news channel sensed a "breaking news" and went on to record an ill-advised CM trying to sneak inside Maj. Sandeep's house(!!!), Mr. Unnikrishnan getting livid on being shut out of his own home, and a grief maddened father abusing the CM, and shutting the door on his face.

Enough was enough, one would have thought.
But no! it went on to take the Kerala CM's reaction to being abused and being shown the door..... and then the dear CM goes one step further in sheer insensitivity and thoughtlessness. He reacts, asking whether, if not for Maj.Sandeep, any dog would visit Mr. Unnikrishnan's house. Hurray! The media channel had got its "scoop". This particularly distasteful comment did the rounds on ALL tv channels, and the issue of the day became whether the Kerala CM should resign for his statements.

But apparently, what the initial news channel and ALL subsequent channels conveniently omitted to say was that the CM had made this insensitive comment in reply to a question by the media on what he thought of Mr. Unnikrishnan's remark. Apparently, and this I got to know from a programme on Asianet, the whole sequence of the interview was not telecast- the question was omitted, only the answer went on tv. .

WHY does the media believe in pouring ghee on fire? What was the NEED to ask the Kerala CM what he thought about being called names, and being shut out of a house? Obviously no one would like it, esp when it was in full view and hearing of the entire nation. Especially when the said person was the Chief Minister of a state. And of course the CM played into their hands with that now notorious statement.

The point is that a family instead of mourning the loss of their precious son, now finds itself concerned with making statements that they did not mean to cause any offence/anguish to the CM, that the media has twisted their remarks and so on and so forth... For naturally, they would not like to be held the reason behind a CM's resignation.

Maybe at least now the media can let them mourn in peace?

* * * * * * * * * * *

However there was another bit of news this week, which tho' shocking and unbelievable to the core, was VERY welcome.

This was on Sr. Abhaya's death.
A death which occured 18 yrs ago, and which was reported to be a suicide (by drowning)for reasons unknown. Which was never accepted by Sr. Abhaya's family. A death which has finally been proved to be a murder. And the reason- that the Sister had caught another sister and two priests in a compromising act!

Apparently, Sr. Abhaya had felt thirsty and had gone to the kitchen for a drink of water, when she happened to see the three of them. Caught with their pants down, they struck Sr. Abhaya with the blunt head of an axe behind her ear. And then the three of them shoved an unconscious Sr. Abhaya into the well in the compound. Where she drowned to death.

Makes me wonder- which do these men and woman of God consider a greater sin? Having sex (or whatever it is they were doing!) or killing a fellow human being? Obviously they were in no doubt that they had to save their skins at any cost. Even at the cost of another's life.

Also made me wonder in passing - would those two priests have taken Confessional in these last 18 years? How would they have been able to hear another's misdeeds and thoughts while having committed such a HUGE crime?

Monday, December 1, 2008


Shock that terrorists could just sail in one fine day and hold a city to ransom.

Disbelief that the siege could go on for 3 days!

Grief at the bloodbath that ensued.

Irritation at the insensitive TV reporting.

Anger at our incompetent leaders.

Through all these, a certain numbness was the overlying emotion. All friends and family were unhurt, that I knew of. Till today.

This morning, in office, was routinely going through, when the heading leaped out at me. Obituary:Rohinton Maloo.

Who was having dinner that night at the Trident.

And then the numbness disappeared. To give way to an overwhelming despair.

Rohinton was my direct boss during one of my assignments with a TV channel. With whom I had worked closely, discussing and strategising... It could so easily have been me at that hotel. Rohinton and I had lunched at similar 5 star hotels at B'lore and Chennai during his visits. Where we had discussed how to bag which client.

Terror has stopped happening to 'them'. It is now 'our' life and security at stake.

Tomorrow what happened to that poor Israeli baby could (God please forbid) happen to Sonny boy.

There is nothing to guarantee that my husband and I return safely from our work tomorrow. Why tomorrow- today!

Why why WHY does God allow these kind of things to happen?

Stories were heart-rending. Each one more than the former.
A young couple who after 7 long years of courtship, were to marry. But now the young man was dead.
A brave, lean young man who tells his friend jokingly that he may finally be gaining some weight. Never again.

Parents who've lost babies.
Men who've lost families.
Families who've lost their father figure.
A country that's lost its heroes.
So much loss.

How do people learn to hate so much? So much that they can cold heartedly pull the trigger on fellow men and have no regrets at snuffing out that life? What kind of sick indoctrination do they follow? Which God do they worship that could possibly condone this kind of gruesomeness? Certainly not Allah who is said to be all Merciful

And knowing that there are such people, having had various examples and modus operandi to learn from, across cities, how do our politicians not learn from their mistakes and lapses? How do they maintain that in a big city such things are small? Why do we even need to have national leaders, I wonder? Just to go about uttering routine statements? And to go about offering money in exchange for lives so that they can claim their share of credit?

And why do we remain a nation of bloodthirsty vultures? WHY do we show ads in the middle of all this carnage? It is so incogruous and SICK. A reporter saying in the middle of an interview with someone- Sir, I'm sorry, but we're running short of time, so we'll just have to take a quick break. running short of time for what? There certainly was nothing worthwhile that she was rushing off to show. Just an advertisement. Which comes after a picture of the flaming Taj.

I seem to remember that during 9/11, none of the foreign channels covering the tragedy aired ANY ads during the time. They have a heart, they do.

Not like The Barkhas and the Rajdeeps of this part of the world.
One even went on to say that there were so many OB vans, so many cameramen, so many reporters gathered to bring the public the news, for over 24 hours now... yeah right.

one man's tragedy is another man's opportunity. To promote his channel. SICK.

God grant solace to all those who've lost loved ones.
And God set right the warped thinking of the terrorists. Teach them that killing doesn't solve anything. Certainly not of innocents.
And God keep us and our loved ones safe from such horrendous tragedies.