Sunday, April 15, 2012

76. Cry you must....

Try recalling last time you were moved to tears watching a Bollywood movie in a cinema theatre! Only the middle-aged movie buffs would reminiscent the past when emotional family dramas would have hundred of viewers sobbing in the darkness of a cinema hall. Not anymore, as wholesome movies have been replaced with wholesale products with first-week box office collection being the only indicator of success. A market economy has little room for sob stories!

It goes without saying that for better part of the last hundred years, ever since Indian cinema came to life in 1912, Bollywood movies had helped millions of viewers drain excess tears to remain psychologically healthy. It is an act of emotional incontinence that provides a variety of emotions find an easy escape. Once you are done with it, you are ready again to face the vagaries of life again. No wonder, sobbing stories have been the biggest hits of commercial cinema.

It is a coincidence that 'hundred years of Indian cinema' also marks the anniversary of its tragedy queen Meena Kumari. Known for her reputation to portray grief-stricken and tragic roles, which were both real-life and reel-life, she had helped millions of viewers fulfill their biological and psychological obligation of shedding tears. At an immense personal cost, she could prove that far from being a sign of weakness shedding tears was indeed an act of strength. There is nothing quite as cathartic as a good cry!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

75. More of less

Little over a decade ago, a phone was just a phone. It could only help dial a number provided one could reach a phone. No more no less! It could neither act like an alarm nor a torch, it could neither click pictures nor convey written messages and it could neither help you surf the virtual web nor assist the perverted mind to set off time bombs. Mobile phone is one among several gadgets that modernity has literally milked to capacity, gifting the user more for less on each purchase.

Buy a trouser and get a shirt free; buy a television and get a mixer grinder free; buy a car and get a refrigerator free; buy a house and get the swimming pool free are market manifestations of a growing culture of 'less for more'. Without doubt, less for more has enticed all and sundry into it without any aspersion being cast on how and who pays for the so-called more in our lives. That more mobiles in a home may mean less sparrows in the courtyard is just about beginning to be a matter of serious concern!

Across almost all areas of human endeavor, less has indeed become a dominant feature. A growing economy is indeed jobless; deficit democracy is producing shameless leaders; unaccountable government is churning clueless policies, human relations have become meaningless as attitudes turn careless; and with education becoming valueless future has never been as directionless. It is perhaps the greatest of all paradoxes that we are seeking more of less. No wonder, our expectations too have become endless.

Can anyone help lessen the more of less from our lives?