Tuesday, April 26, 2016


Pic.: Anima D'Cunha

“Fire and swords are slow engines of destruction,
compared to the tongue of a Gossip.” 
- Richard Steele
Do I gossip?

Much, much less now. But, the habit is not gone fully.

There is some strange kick – a kind of self-gratification – whenever we gossip about other people… I, obviously, did not like when others gossiped about me… I hated it… I knew how damaging it was. And, that realization was enough to lock my own loose tongue…

Leave other people alone, as you want them to leave you alone.

But, then, as I told you, there ‘is’ some strange kick, some intoxicating substance, coming out of the gossip we all indulge in. Hence, we fall prey for it… become its addicts…

“Gossip spreads faster than fire,” the saying goes. I add this: “It sells faster than Salman’s movies, too!”

Early in the morning, today, when I opened ‘Bombay Times’, I was amused…  In fact, I was shocked and angry – to see on its 2nd page… The full page was allocated to carry to us, the readers, the alleged e-mail text of Hritik and Kangana. “It is the limit,” I found screaming in my mind, “It is irresponsible, cheap journalism.”

Now, who heard me? Who cared?

More than the water and the daily bread, people want the daily diet of gossip – who plots against whom, who sleeps with whom…  If that wasn’t true, Bombay Times would be a dumb-head to do it, today…

That’s why, the other day, Nana Patekar said with anguish, how obsessed the media was about the suicide of a TV actress and cold towards the suicide of hundreds of poor farmers!”

Gossip sells, sir… Yes, it, always, sells to a full-house… A box-office hit!

Seventeen-year-old, Sahas, had one more story to share in our PD session today… ‘Who Will Go To Hell.”

Once, a king invited a group of Brahmanas for a meal in his palace. An eagle happened to fly over the kitchen area, holding a cobra with his beak. A few drops of poison fell in the food, which nobody noticed… After the food was served, all the Brahmanas died, on the spot!

Some weeks later, the king had invited a group of his well-wishers for a meal and they had almost reached the palace. Seeing them, a woman enquired, “Where are you headed?”

“To king’s palace,” they explained, “The king has invited us for a meal at his palace.”

“God have mercy,” the woman cried, hands cupping her face in surprise, “Have you not heard about the Brahmanas who died eating the poisonous food served by the king?”

Meanwhile, in Yamlok, there was some confusion. Yama’s servants were puzzled as to who would go to hell – the king, who had invited the Brahmanas for the meal… or the cooks, who had prepared the meal… or, the eagle who had carried the poisonous cobra with his beak… or the cobra, whose poison had killed the Brahmanas?

“None of them,” Yama declared, “That woman with the loose tongue will go to hell!”

“The only time people dislike gossip is when you gossip about them,” Will Rogers, once, said.


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