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Time Up

I hate being a couch potato, not even on holidays. Apart from that fear of being morbidly obese, I hate being glued to the idiot box for hours on end unlike my sister who does not fall asleep until the noise of television plays on her ears. But this Thursday was role reversal. With a bad stomach and slight fever, I found myself shifting rooms in search of comfort and on a bed bang opposite a 29-inch TV. The experience was worse -- what with three remote controls to juggle with and make sense of -- that of the TV, DVD and the now mandatory new set top box, thanks to the conditional access system (CAS) that the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has just implemented in the metros. Well, for all the arguments and counter arguments about CAS, our government sums it up as a consumer-friendly initiative. I call it nuisance value.

Anyway, so there I found myself learning the ropes again, of switching on and setting the TV, then pressing AV1, then clicking on the set box, searching the menu and, finally, the flipping of channels. But boy, need I tell you, my fever was taken care of, albeit for a while. At channel No 121, Nina Manuel, a model, (by the way, we know Bollywood is every model's penultimate calling, but these days they are all also hosting every other show on TV -- from music, food, history to pets ) is imploring "Check out the party metre, guys" as she chases the who's who in the crowd for sound bytes. "I love it, it's werry werry hot," responds a wannabe, who in her excitement at being spotted lost her V for W. And you'd be brain dead if you watched it longer, 'cos all all that Miss Manuel manages to capture are giggles, giggles and more giggles... Maybe that is in, after all, even Aishwarya Rai does it too.

Next channel, the programme: women achievers (with the plethora of channels, it's also a little difficult to remember which one.) In this, the question posed is define a woman achiever. Tough one! Again a lesser-known female actor is intercepted in the hallway of the five-star hotel and flung the question. Her pearls of wisdom: "The fact that she gives birth to a man {sic} is so so so so powerful." Well said, mike moves over to Tara Sharma, an actor with a few films to her credit, who says "intelligence comes from within". So? In case you didnt know, behind every 'successful' show, there is a surprised viewer!

Then I catch Page 3 regular, columnist and writer Shobha De make her entry into one of the haute couture runway shows of one of these designers. The dolled-up anchor asks her, 'what is your personal trademark style'? Her answer: "aw ah hmmm... my personal trademark style is what you see tonight. But it also depends on the place and the mood, and..." She had more than one obviously, but was rudely cut short. Then a blunt Ajay Devgan came like a whiff of fresh air. "Frankly, I don't understand what the term is, I just wear what I am comfortable in." Now you know why the force of features or looks didn't matter to Kajol, who gave up her rising Bollywood career for him.

My channel surfing ends at a wine tasting do. Invariably, pop comes a question from the puppet anchor, who would actually do more good just focussing on the scene. So this time it is: 'Are you a wine lover?" A woman, dressed in a gown apt for the opera in Germany, says, "I am a wine lover, a malt whiskey lover, a vodka lover..." OK. Spot the wine connoisseur! Time up!

Comments

Sabarmati View said…
Hi,

Funny, really funny. I still can't undertstand the philospohy of attaching drama to everything!!! from ardhkumbhmela, wine tasting, desinger dresses to a gruesome incident like Nithari. The Indian television shows the kind of mature democracy we really have!!!! for every damn thing either we have to gigle or scream. For a change can the TV anchors speak like normal sane human beings!!!
Deepika
Sabarmati View said…
Hi,

Funny, really funny. I still can't undertstand the philospohy of attaching drama to everything!!! from ardhkumbhmela, wine tasting, desinger dresses to a gruesome incident like Nithari. The Indian television shows the kind of mature democracy we really have!!!! for every damn thing either we have to gigle or scream. For a change can the TV anchors speak like normal sane human beings!!!
Deepika
rita said…
indira,
i disagree with u, tele viewing wud be so mundane and boring if we had only a BBC or CNN or even our desi NDTV {barring night out} at our disposal, it is channels such as STAR PLUS,SONY,ZEE and others which adds a certain high to our otherwise humdrum existence , i love watching the stupid! weepy! amazing soap serials...ektaa r u listening? puhleeze...dont run out of imaginations.
if a celeb event is being aired on a particular channel ,loud announcements r made in the four corners of our house restraining all inmates to stay away fr the idiot box, for hell hath no fury then a housewife denied her tv progrmme!! scary nah! dont yawn, my dear hubby does that all the time, poor chap, he does not get to see his fav sports channels fr 9pm to 10pm mon to thur.. no prizes for guessing why, heres one more guessing game.. guess my profession? no prizes again.
echema rita

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