Wednesday, March 29, 2017


“The house of fame, he thought, is built on melting ice, not steel...” 

On my way back from bank, I met a couple who have been living in New Zealand for more than two decades. I knew this couple well when they were here in Mumbai. Today, the first comment I made to them was: “You haven’t changed at all!”

“I was about to say that to you,” said the husband.

“I agree,” added the wife.

Not changed at all? In what respect? All of us had put on a lot of weight… We all had grayed… and, yes, we all were not looking as young and dashing as we did years ago… Then, why did we all think of each other as ‘Not changed at all”?

Probably, because: they had seen me, twenty years ago, without a car or a wrist watch… And, today, they were seeing me without a car or a wrist watch, too… They had seen me, then, visiting my bank, and they were seeing it today, too… Perhaps, they were finding no change in my vocabulary and outlook towards people and life… Perhaps, they were seeing me firmly planted on the ground that I once walked…

And, I can say the same thing about the couple: they seemed utterly simple and humble… The NRI status did not seem to pollute this simplicity about life… people and life around them.

We all possessed ‘little’ then, but we were happy. We, now, know that only ‘little’ is enough to see us through this life-journey… that, the size of our wealth, fame and name will not determine our joy… nor will we be able to take those things when we die… Yes, we are aware of this truth!

Then, why this unnecessary pride in our accomplishments… in our wealth, name and fame? After all, how much do we really need to live happily in this world? And, for whom do we keep accumulating so much? Why this grand story?

I was very fond of Shekhar Suman’s talk show – ‘Movers & and Shakers’. He fitted so perfectly well for the role of host… so spontaneous and witty, so much in command. I think – well, I may be wrong in my assessment – with his stupendous success, Shekhar had turned a lot arrogant and insecure, too. I had read the report, that he demanded exorbitant sum of amount from the TV channel etc… Whatever it was: such an amazing show had to end forever!

And, today, I get to hear the same kind of stories about Kapil Sharma. As a comedian and as a host he is so good, so unique. His success has been mind-blowing… and, yet, what you fear today is that it is all going to go…

And, why?

Once again, let me not judge others. Let me only judge myself… After making all that wealth, name and fame, I will have to come back to my home… my very, simple and humble home… where alone – from the heart of my hearts – I know, that I will be secure and happy.


Pic.: Chetna Shetty

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