Wednesday, October 6, 2010

WILL IT HELP?

Some days ago, a lady called me. She wanted to do the Personal Growth programme which THE DAWN CLUB conducted. I regretted saying that we conducted that programme only in the summer holidays. However, I could help her with our inspirational books. "Please come over... I will give you something to read," I told her encouragingly.

"But, will it help me?" the lady - who I was told, 23, and worked for a famous BPO - asked me.

I had already spent about ten minutes with her on the phone. I had asked her as to what exactly had prompted her to think about doing this programme. I, always do that with any one who enquires with me about the programme... Many a times, they think of doing the programme because of of embarrassment they encounter somewhere, or it could be due to the negative feedback from their bosses at the workplace... or it could be a nagging feeling of inferiority that consumes their mind... I, always, go into that. And, I have found that it helps them immensely to see the problem in right perspective.

So, when this young lady asked me sincerely - "Will it help me?", I was quick to respond, "It will."

There was a bit of hesitation. The lady was keen to do the two-months course. She hoped to conquer her 'blues' by completing this course. She was apprehensive about the reading material which I was offering her all free, and with all my enthusiasm. She was hoping to become self-confident on completing the course. She kept asking, "But, will it help me?"

I had come out of my class to talk to this stranger woman. I hadn't met her. I could have asked her to call me later. I could have told her "Sorry ma'am, we have no programmes happening presently. Please get in touch with us just before the next summer." Still, I was trying to help her in whatever way now possible for me... And, I was absolutely sure, if a person wanted to overcome a problem, then every little thing in that direction helped. In fact, the problem gets solved in bits and pieces... One has to take those 'baby steps' - the small steps, that too, one step at a time. I knew from my experience, that all these baby steps are helpful to stand tall one day.

But, when the lady on the phone hoped to stand tall by doing the two months course only, I knew that she was trying to escape from her problems. She was not honest as far as her desire to overcome her problem was concerned. If she was, she would have taken that first, little step...

"Ma'am, I have spoken to you for more than ten minutes, now. We haven't met before; we are strangers. Still, I have come out of my class to talk to you... and, here I am, trying to provide my inputs... Is it not helping you?" I asked the young lady on the other side.

"Oh yes, it does, sir," the woman was spontaneous in her answer.

"Then, please trust me. Every little step that you take to beat your blues is the right step. They are the scattered pieces of a puzzle called Life. You have no option but to put them together," I dramatised a little.

The silence was profound.

The next day, the young lady came over. I handed her some books and spent another fifteen minutes talking over the issues that burdened her. She looked quite relieved and grateful. "Thank you sir, for every thing," she said as she began to leave. "It will certainly help me... I know now."


GERALD D'CUNHA

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

REEL LIFE AND REAL LIFE

I watched the movie, 'ROBOT', along with my wife. Normally, we take our son along when we go to watch a movie. This time, my son's 12th standard term-exams were nearing, and my wife wanted him not to 'waste' his three hours watching this movie. So, we watched it secretly... and, both of us enjoyed the movie immensely.

"Don't open you 'big' mouth, " my dear wife warned me on our way home, "He has hardly done any studies."

That night, I could control my urge to open my 'big' mouth. The next day was a Sunday. I called my son from out. "We watched 'ROBOT' yesterday... It was mind-blowing. Go and watch today. It is a must watch for a creative guy like you." Then, I added the inevitable: "Don't tell mom that I have opened my 'big' mouth."

"Relax dad,"  my son assured me. When he was home, neither could he control his mouth.

Exams? "Just chill, dad."

I hadn't seen much of Rajnikant. I had never liked his acting... It was too loud, too gaudy for my taste. The Madras men are different... They always like larger-than-life stuff when it comes to 'filams'. The way they adore, rather worship, their film stars is peculiar to the place. Nowhere else do we get to witness this 'madness'.

Rajni is their God. And, in 'Endhiran' - 'ROBOT' - they have enough and enough of him. Their God, Rajni, doesn't age. He is eternally young, slim and handsome... He is an eternal lover... has the best babe around... He is tough, unbeatable... and can destroy an army of hundred villains all alone. He has the best of the best outfits, the finest sunglasses and leather jackets... and, yes, those expensive wigs, too.

Rajni doesn't grow old. Rather, the Madras men don't want him to.

What a pressure, that can be!

But, not for Rajnikant. The phenomenon. The simple guy who even did jobs of a coolie before he worked as a bus conductor... The guy who dreamt of movie world and did odd rolls... and, finally, the role of a Hero.

No, Rajnikant is still humble, still honest. He is 'fake' only for his movies... only to entertain his fans. That's reel life, and he knows it is okay only till the 'kick' lasts. At the end of the day, when the focus is out, you have to reveal the 'real' you... your dark, wrinkled skin, your bald head, your shapeless moustache, your simple comfort in that white shirt and 'mundu'. Rajnikant, I think, alone can do such switch over... It is a huge thing to do... Face the world, the glamour world, with that honesty, and true self.

Michael Jackson faked it in real life, and died, finally, under its weight. It takes terrific strength to do what Rajni is doing. Hats off, saar.

I like your movie, even more, because of this awe-inspiring quality about you.

Please, pass on a little of it to all of us, here.


GERLAD D'CUNHA